LADY BIRD JOHNSON SMILES DOWN FROM HEAVEN
If you dandy dandylions or favor frogbit, Wildflowers of the Coastal Plain belongs in your field pack. McNeese State biology professor Ray Neyland has compiled a photographic guide to more than 530 spontaneous outbursts of beauty that pop up from east Texas to Florida and north through the mid-Atlantic states. Louisiana, in fact, is the only state fully within the geographical confines of Neyland’s guide. Terse, to-the-point descriptions of the wildflowers, their range and blooming season accompany each photograph. But be warned: Some of the descriptions read like flower erotica: “this hirsute annual herb produces erect or procumbent stems ... the alternately arranged leaves are elliptical, ovate, or lanceolate with entire or toothed margins ...” That’s Heterotheca subaxillaris, otherwise known as camphorweed. Put on the Barry White, turn down the lights and crack open the Champale, mama! Indices to the book sort flowers by color, making it easy to track down and identify that specimen idling by the roadside or climbing the hedge. Wildflowers of the Coastal Plain is available at Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, amazon.com , and through lsu.edu/lsupress . — Walter Pierce
WALK THE LINE
Ever wanted to try your hand at tightrope walking but did not want to deal with pesky things like falling to your death from 500 feet off the ground? Well Pack & Paddle has something for you. Gibbon makes a flat slackline that you can place between two trees and practice your acrobatics. Some practitioners of slackline walking can perform tricks, such as back flips and front flips. But just walking on it is not as easy as it looks. Trust me. (And your chiropractor will thank you). You can find one at Pack & Paddle, 601 E. Pinhook Road. The 15-meter line is $79.95 and 25-meter $99.95. Call 232-5854. — Ryan Broussard
1960s dance hall music on steroids. That’s how Kevin Dugas and Steve Riley describe their latest project, High Performance, an all-star band that came together with the notion of a ’60s Cajun roadhouse revival, bringing back the big twin fiddle, pedal steel guitar-infused sound popularized by legends of the day like Belton Richard and Aldus Roger. While the idea for the band has been germinating for a decade, High Performance finally came together for the first time last year, and has just released their first CD, “Live From Breaux Bridge,” recorded at Mulate’s. For today’s Cajun music fan, High Performance may be as close as you can get to transporting yourself back to a swinging early 70s Breaux Bridge dancehall. “Live from Breaux Bridge” retails for $15.98 and is out on Swallow Records. It can be ordered through flattownmusic.com . — Nathan Stubbs
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OCT 30 If you're a Louisiana native of (ahem) a certain age, you might have fond (or fuzzy, as the case may be) memories of a Zebra concert and singing "Who's Behind the Door" until your ears rang. This post on NOLA Defender profiles the leader of that band, Randy Jackson.
OCT 30 The National Journal offers this analysis of Bobby Jindal's willingness to stump in any Senate campaign that's not in Louisiana. Why is that? The Journal asks some GOPers and finds that the answer is one we already know: he's so unpopular here, because he's been so busy running for President, that his support might be "toxic."
OCT 30 If you're not obsessed with the Texas governor's race - what's wrong with you? Here's another installment, from our own IND contributor Lamar White Jr., who explains why Wendy's "infamous" wheelchair ad was a shock to the national media - but not to anyone familiar with Greg Abbott's record.
OCT 30 Blogger Tom Aswell is still all over the OGB mess - and all by himself, apparently. In this post, he's revealing orders from the Jindal administration to destroy records from the state employee health insurance plan. Those orders (he's heard) have angered the Secretary of State and caused an administration lawyer to quit her job. Wow!
OCT 30 Blogger Crazy Crawfish is taking aim at state Superintendent John White again, this time for comments White made recently, claiming that there is no real opposition to Common Core in Louisiana. Crawfish is documenting proof to the contrary here, and lays down the gauntlet to "mainstream news media." (Don't hold your breath on that one, buddy.)
OCT 30 Gambit covers Advocate publisher John Georges' recent visit to Loyola in this post. Georges touches on how things are going in this new gig, what he thinks about the Pic's decision to move printing to Alabama, and how he feels about his political campaigns.
OCT 30 A NOLA lady has alleged she was drugged and raped at a Bywater club that had a clothing-optional policy until recently, and she's now become the victim of a smear campaign, columnist Jarvis DeBerry writes in this post. She chose to reveal her story and her name, and she's being punished for that now, he says.
OCT 30 BESE member Lottie Beebe pens this letter to the editor of the Advocate about the state Department of Education. The DOE isn't exempt from the state public records law, and because of recent lawsuits she tried to require regular reports about how many requests had been made to the department and how many remained unanswered. She wasn't successful.
OCT 29 Manny Schewitz blogs on Forward Progressives about recent Facebook posts from David Vitter, including one that purports to take you to a petition to stop Ebola (say what?) but actually signs you up for his newsletter or campaign email list or some such nonsense. Dave must think we're dummies, Manny says -- and Dave's probably right.
OCT 29 Usually, the copy on Red Shtick is satire. But in this post "from the publisher," we get a pretty astute political analysis of Edwin Edwards' charisma and old-school populist swagger. Edwards isn't concealing billionaire backers, or trying to make his opponent out to be "Satan," the post says. He's just running. Huh; imagine that.
OCT 29 Salon's Elias Isquith writes this fairly hilarious commentary on a National Review post about Bobby Jindal's attempts to "beef up" in preparation for a presidential run. But it's not just funny; Isquith seems to have Bobby's number, commenting on how the Gov "and his team are hopelessly ensconced in the Tea Party bubble."
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