Archive for September, 2008

Remember this guy? He’s back!

Last week as comparisons to Haslett began flying in reference to Sean Payton, the blonde-coiffed former Saints coach has himself a new gig.

The Rams named Haslett to replace Scott Linehan, who was fired Monday morning after compiling an 11-25 record.

Ya boi Varg will be at the first-ever Broad St. Bazaar today from 10 – 3. That’s Sept. 27! Like today!
I’ll be slinging salvaged wood folk art for the most affordable prices ever. Promo is below…

There’s a new market in town and it’s gonna rock! The Broad St. Bazaar launches this Saturday in the heart of Mid-City with a great cross-section of flea market vendors, and some of New Orleans most creative artists, crafters and clothing designers. Neighborhood fave Ruby Slipper will be serving up hot brunch and cold cocktails and Mid-City’s own DeSoto St. Band will provide the live musical backdrop. The weather’s supposed to be gorgeous. Come help us launch the market in true New Orleans style!

BROAD ST. BAZAAR: Flea Market & Community Services
WHEN: 4th Saturday of every month, beginning Saturday, September 27. 10 am – 3 pm
WHERE: Robert’s parking lot, Broad St. @ Bienville
WHAT: Flea market vendors; artists, designers and crafters who work with recycled materials. Plus: brunch & drinks by Ruby Slipper; music by the DeSoto St. Band; free Tulane Community Health screenings; Phoenix recycling station; voter registration; personal services like braiding and massage.
WHY: To help revitalize the historic Broad St. corridor and link to the Bayou Rd. development district, which has a Fresh Market every 4th Saturday.

Cree’s Cheap Chic: Vintage clothes & original Cree-ations
Donald Miller: Used books: Lit classics, Greek to Beat, plus sci-f and Louisiana-ana
Howlpop/Calamity: Value-priced art fashion
Fleur de Lisa Candles: Soy Candles & Reed Diffusers in a variety of scents
Lance Vargas: Salvaged wood folk art and flea
Renee Allie: Used books, knick-knacks & other flea market items
Defend New Orleans: DNO t-shirts, hoodies & accessories
High Bohemia: Handcrafted spirit dolls, jewelry, lavendar bags
Linda Glessinger: Vintage items, some way cool and some way collectible
Recycle Bicycle: Refurbished used bikes & accessories
Avant Garbe: UP-cycled funky wear with a New Orleans flare plus unique vintage pieces
Amanda Golub: Used DVDs, toys, collectibles, old purses, books, etc.
Maggie Mae: Original t-shirts, jewelry & art; vintage jewelry, clothing & collectibles
Tatyana: Original voodoo dolls and recycled animal/dolls; women’s clothing & shoes
Bayou Salvage: Recycled selvage & salvage
Rachelle Matherne: Handmade resing jewelry and bottlecap magnets
King & Queen Emporium: Essential oils & incense
Art by Mags: Stenciled clocks & signs; NOLA Rising & Obama art prints; silkscreened clothing
Amy & Robert Sorenson: Tie-dye and folk art

Hello Nancy Pelosi! My name is Lance Vargas and I am a blogger down in New Orleans. You know, the City That Bush Forgot!

Man, I was so happy when you and the Democrats took control of Congress back in 2006! I’m not a huge fan of your party but man, I can’t stand those Republicans! They can really mess a country up in a short time span can’t they? I’m still waiting for my trickle downs. Starting to get a crook in my neck! In fact I can hardly even see what’s going on up there but I hear there is some sort of financial crisis going on and there isn’t anything left to trickle down. They spent it all up and left nary a drop! It’s a good thing I wasn’t waiting for it anyway!

See Nancy, debt has been a monkey on my back since I moved to New Orleans four years ago. During the transition my fiances took a hit and I relied on my credit card to get by. Those plastic slices of ruin have been a sucking chest wound on my finances ever since! My interest rate jumped 14 percent because I was late on my SBA loan? What?

Since I know each credit card company is backed up by a financial institution and since our nation’s financial institutions are in so much trouble these days I was just wondering if the proposed $700 Billion might be better used getting ME out of debt. And folks like me of course.

See, even with the most liberal of calculations, $2,333 of the $700 billion bailout is my individual portion. That’s $700 billion divided by the 300 million Americans.

So, how much would it help America’s financial institutions if everybody decided to pay off $2,333 worth of their debt all at once? Would it help? If so, I’d like to formally request that my portions be paid to my USAA credit card. It’s the one with the highest balance.

And I’m not looking for a handout either, I want the same interest rate being offered to the big companies. I just don’t want to be indebted to a credit card company anymore and since Congress is in the business of debt relief, I figured I would go ahead and propose this! In fact, if you want to pay off the entire balance of the USAA card, we can work it that way too.

Anyway, let’s talk. I think you’ll find that this Vargas Plan will assist both the little guy and the big guy. I’m just worried about giving away the equivalent of 16 Cat-5 Hurricane Protection and rebuilt coasts to folks who have already shown to be bad with money. I mean, I’m not great with the stuff myself but at least I’m managing. And this is with being laid off twice and a few natural disasters to boot!

Also, I am posting this letter and your response on my blog,


Lance “Varg” Vargas

e-mailed 10:16 a.m.

Rep LaBruzzo,

Hello! My name is Lance Vargas and I am a blogger over in New Orleans. I am sorry for bothering you as I am sure your e-mail box is filling up with inquiries about your sterilization program. I am trying to help get the word out there by getting some questions answered. If you answer the interrogatives below, I will post them on the blog. They all relate to The Program.

- Will The Program be offered to all women or just poor women? How will income be verified?

- What will be the age limits?

- Will proof of residency be verified? How long after a person lives in the state will they be eligible?

- What department of state will manage The Program?

- How much will the doctors be paid to perform the procedures?

- Who will assume liability for complications?

- Will there be counseling provided to the participants before and after? At what cost?

- Will the $1000 be taxed?

- What are the overall costs per person for The Program?

- Has a study been done to weigh the cost of the program vs. safe sex education or adoption?

- Has a study been done to determine how many poor women would be willing to participate?

- How will this decision effect the already dwindling population rates in South Louisiana? Will we lose more Congressional seats because of it?

- How is the state going to determine how many children of poor mothers grow up to be taxpayers versus dependents? How much revenue will be lost to the state and country?

Those are some practical questions but here are some more honest questions…

- How am I supposed to react when I see the state is providing free health care to poor people when I, as a struggling artist, have to hustle to pay the mortgage every month and sit worrying about health care?

- Isn’t The Program a form of socialized medicine?

- Or worse, Eugenics? (I wont patronize you by adding a definition)

- How does the pro-life governor feel about the program?

- How is the state going to determine if a woman is using The Program to avoid kids or just to make $1000 off the fact that she doesn’t want them anyway.

- Why does The Program seem to be geared toward women with a brief mention of men? One would think with the number of absent fathers and the cost of child support enforcement, it might be easier and more successful to gear it towards men.

If you could answer these questions and get back to me I will get it up on the blog ASAP. Also, I’m putting this e-mail and your response on the blog. It’s at



e-mailed at 9:52 am

Remember this?

Now, that’s what was needed on Sunday. An effort like that. This isn’t a knock on Frenchy it’s just an exalt for Deuce.

But hey, I guess…

See also, Muffalatta.

Here’s hoping for a speedy and stress-free return to Middendorf’s on Lake Manchac. The fiancee and I would pop a good CD in and drive up the double nickel for Middendorf’s awesome BBQ ersters and thin-sliced catfish. Unfortunately, it seems it was the original building that received the brunt of the surge and that one had the more character and appeal with an emphasis on stained wood and driftwood fixtures.
Culinary catastrophes: Hurricane Ike wrecks popular restaurants

Now that’s a bowl of spaghetti that I like to see. However, impending New York apocalypse is imminent! Better build some levees around that reclaimed land in Lower Manhattan!
Invest 93

While it seems easy for some folks I talk to to dismiss a murder they may read about in the paper that is listed as “man gunned down in Lower 9″ or “teen shot in Central City,” the stories within are always so much more complicated. The vile comments suggest “another thug gone” but it’s simply a defense mechanism that allows them to feign some sort of street justice. The victim often gets the most blame. Many times, it’s nothing of the sort.
21 years later, a son seeks justice

Oh lawd, lawd. He has arisen.

Even dead seemed to try to flee Ike’s wrath

Hurricane Katrina chased bluesman Clarence “Gatemouth” Brown from his adopted home in New Orleans to his hometown here on the Texas Gulf Coast, where he died in exile. Now, another hurricane has disturbed his rest.

The 1982 Grammy Award winner’s casket was one of dozens belched up by the ground when gulf and rain waters from Hurricane Ike flooded Hollywood Cemetery, an all-black burial ground on the west side of this city on the Sabine River.

This story will be told for centuries.

- Moss has seven receptions for 164 yards and one TD with a long (the TD) of 67.

- It was ugly all the way through but really got ugly in the fourth quarter. I remember telling Mikey we just needed a couple first downs and this one would be out of reach. Little did I know the fates would make a calculated, fast and furious decision to deny us. A 67-yard TD pass on the first play of the drive? Another tipped ball? Perhaps they had PHED (Post Hurricane Evacuation Syndrome)?

- Reggie Bush needs the ball in the open field. Once there, his quickness can do wonders. If he has anything to do with an defensive line, he is toast and runs around trying to find some open field which NFL defenses aren’t going to allow coming out of the backfield. He could also stand not to taunt opposing teams. I heard a Chicago fan say his little dance in the end zone after his score in the NFC Championship game ignited the Bears and their fans and motivated them to kick our ass the rest of the game. That’s right, Reggie cost us the Super Bowl.

- Meacham? Meacham! Congratulations on your first NFL catch and touchdown at the same time. It seems like just yesterday our premier 2007 draft choice showed up out of shape and was injured.

- Welcome back Deuce. Two touches for ten yards. That’s 1/3 of what Frenchy and Bush did with 8 times as many attempts. Yes, I know that is a fruity stat.

- Shockey had his pouty face on after his fumble. This was after he got up from it and screamed, “I’m on fire! I’m on Fire! Help me!” The Coach Payton ran out there and said, “Please don’t let the invisible fire burn my friend!”

- Disabled Saints D had three quarters of very annoying and nerve-wracking play and one quarter of just sucking eggs.

- Go Grammatica!

- Clay offers up some photos of local flood protection points-of-interest during Ike’s storm surge. It is always commendable when a blogger puts their boots on the ground and provides the simplest information not reported in the local coverage. No comments necessary, just the facts here.

- Speaking of boots on the ground, Maitri, Karen, , Ariella Cohen, and Jacob Brancasi traveled down into the doorstep of Acadiana after Gustav and sent back many important photos and reports. It’s assumed that the storm surge from Ike only exacerbated the damage from Gustav. And hopefully as the area recovers, visitors can free to take a day trip into that beautiful yet threatened part of the state.

- Jeffrey’s Saints’ recaps are in full swing, expect delightful recaps from the 600 seats as early as Monday but no later than Friday but sometimes not at all through the rest of the season. There will be much hating on Reggie Bush and Jeremy Shockey, many questioning of Sean Payton’s calls and numerous references to a certain alcoholic breakfast beverage made with tomato juice.

- Speaking of the Saints, now would be a good time to check Italian Sports Guys, Saintseester (who also happens to have a very nice site design and Our Saints.

- Tim’s left brain was in full effect when he comprised a small “evacuation decision matrix.” No matrix needed for me Tim, I’m not depending on no levees! Whoa! Hey!

- Pistolette is knocked up and internet addicted so she’s taking some time off (great Gustav ‘I’m stayin’ coverage over there by the way), meantime Nola Slate is showing signs of life. Ditto for Celcus who seems to have been going at it non-stop since Rising Tide and the storms.

- I’m sure I left some folks out, just go to anyone on the blogroll, they are all good.

Ruthie the Duck Girl dies of cancer at 74

I dressed up as Ruthi this past year for Halloween and, after only skating a few short blocks in the Quarter I parked my ass on Molly’s bar stool in fear of busting my ass. Many rounds later, I was trying to skate to the bathroom and ended up doing just that, in front of groups of people who commented on my stupidity.

I don’t know how that little lady did it but she managed to spend a generation or two doing what I couldn’t do for one night – skating a diminutive frame around the crooked sidewalks and streets of the French Quarter wearing a wedding dress with ducks in tow. Everyone who has spent any time down there has a story about her it seems.

Eccentric New Orleans has a great page on Ruthie with detailed links along the side. They also have several pages on other Quarter characters over the years. I don’t see that crazy Hulk Hogan guy in there though. Come to think of it, I haven’t seen him since before Katrina.

Erster’s got some more words and thoughts on Ruthie.

Again, adieu Duck Girl.