20090422-finds-0101.jpgLADY 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

ROADHOUSE REVIVAL
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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