Party Girl's toes are still tappin' from Festival International last weekend and the Performing Arts Society of Acadiana's four-day Tap City marathon the previous week. I hope everyone had their dancin' shoes on. I'm looking forward to hearing all of your festival party stories, but let me tell you about Tap City. The New York dancers were picked up at the airport by Don Johnson in the Good Times trolley, their open-air transportation for the weekend. Don whisked the dancers to the tap jam at Downtown Alive!, where they later performed to some zydeco with Lil' Nathan and the Zydeco Big Timers. The dancers were also treated to an elegant dinner in the Iberia Bank lobby where they were introduced to their local tap all-star counterparts. Although the PASA stars had been practicing for weeks for their closing number in the show, they were caught by surprise when Rebecca Landry called an impromptu rehearsal as dessert was served. Barbara and Bobby McCarty, Conrad Comeaux, Joyce Bonin and Daryl Byrd and his daughter Emma enjoyed the sneak peek performance, a sign of more tap to come over the next three days. At Saturday's ArtWalk, tap legend Brenda Bufalino signed copies of her book at The Independent Weekly's offices to the tap sounds of the Immaculate Heart of Mary dancers out on the street. Sunday's Tap City performance was followed by a cast party at Michael Doumit's home, which sustained the dancers for yet one more performance for local students on Monday. I said marathon, didn't I? "Familiar faces and new audiences alike showed up for all of our tap activities making the Tap City weekend a huge, exuberant success!" says PASA's Natalie LeBlanc. Party Girl would venture to say even Natalie and PASA Director Jackie Lyle were tapped out!
Birthday girl Gail Romero of Van Eaton & Romero wasn't quite ready to tap her feet when a brass band surprised her on the treadmill at Red's for her big 65th. More than 100 agents were in on the surprise, armed with a "Social Security" birthday banner and signs with Gail's eighth grade photo, the work of Gail's business partner, Nancy Broussard. Party Girl bets Gail is still thanking her for that one! After all the commotion, Gail was able to enjoy breakfast overlooking the tennis courts. Happy Birthday, girl! Doesn't everyone need a business partner like Nancy?
Party On! ' PG
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DEC 6 Here we are, at the top of another bad list: this time, Louisiana has the (dubious) honor of beating out all other states when it comes to gutting higher ed funding, this Picayune story reports. The American Association of Colleges and Universities says our cuts (nearly 18 percent this year alone) are the highest in the nation. Three-fourths of the states increased funding last year, with the top spender increasing funding by 28 percent. This is a great legacy for our governor, right?
DEC 6 Blogger Lamar White Jr. takes a look at the creepy effort over in Baton Rouge, wherein the southern, lily-white area of the city wants to secede from the union, er, create its own "city" and take all the really fat sales tax cows with it. Turns out the group campaigning for the move is a for-profit corporation, and Lamar says that means its effort won't pass legal muster.
DEC 6 Blogger Tom Aswell tells us about some fishiness he found in the state worker's comp office. There's some confusion about when one guy started working there, and there's also some involvement by a GOP lege from Hammond. It's all just another example of the Jindal administration's actions that "defy explanation," Aswell says.
DEC 6 Edwin Edwards may think it's possible he will be governor again, but columnist James Gill isn't so sure. Edwards would have to get a presidential pardon to run for governor -- unless he wants to wait until he's 99, Gill says. But even Edwards' many supporters should probably hope he doesn't get that, because there's no real chance he can win, Gill says.
DEC 6 Here's an interesting post on DIG Magazine for football history buffs. It's about the Pelican Bowl, the Bayou Classic and the history of black college football. It's a trip down memory lane and the story of a "mythical black college national crown." What killed it? Trying to compete with the Bayou Classic.
DEC 6 Nelson Mandela became famous while sitting in prison, where he was a symbol of apartheid. But his enduring legacy was his ability to forgive, to reach out a hand of peace to heal his country of division and oppression, and the Picayune talks about this aspect of his personality. The story also reminds us of the more light-hearted moments Louisiana shared with the former President of South Africa.
DEC 6 We've all been passed by a nut on the highway and assumed the driver was on drugs. Maybe that's not hyperbole: here's a story from the Picayune about a guy riding around with a meth lab in his back seat. One wonders if his insurance policy included coverage for random explosions.
DEC 6 Here's a new blog in the NOLA Defender; it's called Shift Change, and it's all about cocktails. This installment by Rhiannon Enlil focuses on the sazerac, the enigmatic cocktail made with absinthe. But Enlil also introduces herself, a long-time NOLA bartender who has "a lot of booze" in her house.
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