Monday, August 31, 2009

Blow Hard

A new DWI breath test law that will take effect tonight at midnight imposing stricter penalties for drunk driving offenses. During the last legislative session lawmakers increased the sentence to a mandatory 1 year license suspension for those that will not submit to a breath test, up from the previous law of 6 month suspension. Additionally, if a person refuses more than one breath test within 5 years, the driver's license will be automatically suspended for 2 years. Perhaps not so coincidentally, the law takes effect just in time for Labor Day weekend. For more information, click here.

Photo by Oregon DOT

Roosevelt Hotel Reopens In New Orleans

National Public Radio aired a story this morning written by Kathy Lohr, about the reopening of the Roosevelt Hotel last month, nearly four years after being closed due to damage sustained during hurricane Katrina. From the story:

The hotel, now part of the Waldorf Astoria chain of hotels, dates back to 1893; in the 1920s and '30s, it was the place to stay in New Orleans. Jazz greats, including Louis Armstrong, performed in the Blue Room, and movie stars frequented the grand hotel. After being shuttered for nearly four years, the Roosevelt has regained its former brilliance. Original mosaic tiles in the lobby were uncovered, and the Italian crystal chandeliers have been carefully cleaned. Now, they are stunning.

More here.

Photo by Infrogmation

Fly Me To The Moon..Or Church

Governor Bobby Jindal has run up quite a tab by using a state police helicopter to attend church services around the state, this according to a story that appeared in yesterday's Advocate, written by Michelle Millhollon. Between March 8 and July 19, Gov. Jindal made 14 trips to attend and speak at church services across the state. The helicopter that the governor uses the most costs $1,200 an hour to operate — about $45,000 for five months of church visits. That's 45 grand of tax payer money in 5 months. At least he didn't blow that money on something as silly as "volcano research", or heaven forbid, expanded unemployment benefits. Whew.
Read more here.

State Tax Amnesty from Alexandria, ran this article by Mike Hasten about a two month tax amnesty program the state will run from Tuesday, Sept. 1, to Saturday October 31, during which, the state will waive half of the interest payments and all penalties assessed for late filing if overdue taxes are paid up to date. From the article:
Even people who are currently wrapped up in legal battles with the state over back taxes can take advantage of the settlement offer. You'll have to pay any fees, such as attorney costs if the department has had to hire outside counsel, or administrative fees.
Byron Henderson, spokesman for the revenue department, said a large number of people are expected to settle their accounts with the state. Of the $473.1 million in accounts receivable and $168.3 million in interest payments due, the state set a target of collecting about $150 million."Based on current economic conditions and prior tax amnesty periods, we're confident we can reach that goal," Henderson said.

More here.

Honore Says Not So Fast

Matt Smith, reporting for CNN's says that Retired Lt. Gen. Russel Honore claims to have no interest in running for the Senate seat now held by David Vitter. From the article:
Retired Lt. Gen. Russel Honore, now a CNN emergency preparedness analyst, said he is moving back to his home state. But "No one's talking to me about running for Senate," Honore said."That is a serious rumor that's got started that's created a lot of buzz," said Honore, who left the Army in 2008. But he said he has never declared a party affiliation, and any talk of a Senate run is "all about speculation and rumors."
Read more here.

Here's our post from Friday with the story from the that first reported Honore may be contemplating entering the race.

Photo by Getty Images

Could You Pass Me Those Cracklins..And My Lipitor has an article by Rebecca Ruiz that lists the top ten "most medicated" states, and guess who comes in number 8? Of course, there are many contributing factors that lead to this, but the big three are heart disease, obesity, and diabetes. Dr. Jane Barlow, vice president of medical strategy and clinical quality for Medco Health Solutions is quoted in the article:
"The growth in prescription drug use," says Barlow, is driven in part by "chronic diseases that are largely preventable and are linked to lifestyle and physical activity."

You don't have to look very far to find the other states in the top ten, most are right here in the south with a couple of exceptions.

1. West Virginia
2. Alabama
3. South Carolina
4. Tennessee
5. Arkansas
6. Missouri
7. Kentucky
8. Louisiana
9. Mississippi
10. Iowa

Here are Louisiana's relevant stats:

Retail prescriptions filled per capita: 15.4

Percent of obese/overweight adults: 63.6%
National average: 63%

Heart disease death rate per 100,000: 232.2
National average: 200.2

Prevalence of diabetes: 10.6%
National average: 8.2%

Read more here.

EVD Construction Goes High Tech

Evangeline Downs is bringing construction to the digital age by having a live streaming web cam capture the building of their new 25,000 square foot events center project. According to the Advertiser, they hope to open the facility, which will be located on the north side of the casino, by the first of the year. They plan to use the building for concerts, receptions, horse shows and other special events. A hotel is also in the works. Even though it may be a little tedious to sit and watch for hours on end, it is pretty cool to check in on from time to time to see their progress. See the Evangeline Downs web cam here.

New Rebate Program for Appliances

Got a clunker of an old refrigerator? Maybe an old energy hog of a freezer? Well, this fall a provision in the recovery act will kick in so you can get a brand new energy star appliance. They're billing it 'cash for appliances' and the Department of Energy will offer rebates of $50 to $200 for purchases of high efficiency household appliances, like refrigerators, dishwashers, and washers and dryers. KLFY has more details, and here is the Department of Energy full press release detailing what appliances are eligible.

Now, if you do get a new refrigerator and aren't quite sure what to do with the old one, Allied Waste does offer a large appliance and furniture pick-up once a month. Here's a handy map on the Lafayette Consolidated Government website to see when they pick up at your house and a complete list of what they do and do not accept.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

2 New Recreation Centers in Lafayette

There are 2 new recreational centers in town for both kids and pets to enjoy. The first is Camp Bow Wow, a doggy day care and overnight camp that recently opened in Lafayette. Camp Bow Wow is located at 114 Eunice Street (off Pinhook) and what's pretty cool about this 'camp' is that they offer live online video stream Camper Cams so concerned 'parents' can log on and view their pets anytime.

Also, you may have noticed, there's some new building activity on Ambassador by Dulles. That's going to be a Jump Zone Party and Play Center which is expected to open in Spring of 2010. The 9000 square foot facility will feature 8 different inflatables for kids to jump on, a large obstacle course, and a special Sesame Street Learning Area for toddlers only. Jump Zone will be a pay one price facility so all activities are included in the admission.

Photo by deweller

Victoria Reggie Kennedy

On Thursday, National Public Radio (NPR) aired a discussion between correspondent, Cokie Roberts and host, Steve Inskeep on Morning Edition regarding the widow of Sen. Ted Kennedy, Victoria Reggie Kennedy. Victoria Kennedy is originally from Crowley. Roberts, herself from New Orleans and daughter of former members of Congress, Hale and Lindy Boggs, gives her insight and opinion of Victoria Kennedy's involvement and potential future in the office of her late husband. Check it out here.

[UPDATE: The Huffington Post has a front page story on this very topic right now. Read it here.]

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Art Show at Evangeline Galleries

One of our sponsors, Evangeline Galleries, has a brand new website just in time for a huge art event they are hosting in September. Evangeline Galleries announced that they will be featuring artist, Kimberly J. Brannon, of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and international fine art dealer Alexander & Victor Fine Art. The Open House Preview Event will be from 10am to 8pm on Friday, September 25th with the show continuing on Saturday the 26th from 10am - 8pm. In addition to Kimberly’s contemporary art works, they will have over 200 new traditional paintings brought in by Alexander & Victor Fine Art, to go along with Evangeline Galleries original art and prints - the largest selection of art in Acadiana.

Kimberly’s abstract and floral acrylics on canvas and paper explore beauty through brilliant vermilion hues and raised patterns that will leave your fingers jealous of your eyes’ encounter. Her application of the paint differs from one layer to the next - drips on top of thin washes, with palette knife workings and layered gold-leaf – collectively developing the story of how each painting was created.

Kimberly received her BFA in Printmaking from Louisiana State University, and studied at the Illustration Academy in Liberty, Missouri. Her art has been published by the Phoenix Art Group, in Phoenix, Arizona. She is currently working with the art publication group, Art in Motion, of Vancouver, Canada.

Alexander & Victor Fine Art bring with them decades of fine art experience and a collection of original artwork that include both traditional and contemporary pieces from many international artists from 15 different countries.

For more information, please call Evangeline Galleries at 337-232-1442, or email

Image: Kimberly J. Brannon, Sunset, 2009, Acrylic on canvas 48"x36"

The Shed BBQ Coming to Scott

Looks like there's a new restaurant coming to Scott in November. According to various reports, The Shed BBQ and Blues Joint has signed a new franchise agreement with Frank Sannier and Kaliste Saloom III for Lafayette, Louisiana. WLOX reports that they are going to be moving into a "pre-existing 8,000 square foot building located just west of Lafayette on the Scott exit, LA93 North" which sounds like the old IronHorse Bar and Grill.

Hurricane Katrina Victims List

As one final Hurricane Katrina anniversary post, I thought that this was one of the most poignant tributes out there. John Mutter, a professor at Columbia University created this Hurricane Katrina Deceased-Victims List website and it's accompanying facebook page in an attempt to document all those who died as a result of the storm and its extended aftermath. The list, along with details of their passing, if available, is here. It's sobering to see the names of all the people that storm took with it: men, women, white, black...people of all ages - but so many lady was 105, another 102....

This particular family's experience has stayed with me since I first read it. It's the story of the Green family and here is what they were doing 4 years ago today:
Joyce Green, 73, died while on a rooftop waiting to be rescued; She suffered from Parkinson's disease and told her son Jonathan she would take care of NaiNai (Shanai Green). He told her not to give up, but she died. Marion Green, 69, Rita Green, 84, and Shanai Green, 3, also died. Shanai slipped off a roof into Hurricane Katrina's flood waters; The family didn't leave the home because of the traffic exiting the city. They went to the roof of the house. The house was floating down the street at the height of tree lines. Within five minutes, they landed two blocks away. Robert Green lifted Shanai to the roof of a more stable home. He turned around to grab the other two kids, but Shanai had fallen off the roof. The water was too treacherous to pull her out again. He yelled "Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Jesus." He couldn't deal with it. He said he was her Paw-Paw and knew she knew he would pull her up out of that water.....
Heartbreaking. If you do nothing else today, please take a few minutes to visit this list and remember all the good people that didn't make it out of that horrible flood 4 years ago.

Photo by Richard Masoner

Friday, August 28, 2009

Katrina Links

There are several articles today regarding the 4 year anniversary of Hurricane Katrina. leads the way with Greg Palast's story on Ivor van Heerden former professor at LSU who predicted the failing of the levees in New Orleans. Van Heerden was fired from LSU, Palast claims, under pressure from Big Oil interests, and the Army Corps of Engineers. Read it here.

Next, CNN's AC360, has an essay from Harry Shearer, regarding the progress of New Orleans in the last four years. From the article:
While the national media packed up and moved away after the initial orgasm of anger at FEMA, the local media reported something remarkable: The Corps was claiming that the flooding was due to the "overtopping" of its levees and floodwalls, while two teams of pro-bono forensic investigators were finding evidence that no overtopping had occurred.As the Corps started denigrating these investigators, they kept digging, and kept coming up with the real story, available now for all to see (though all too few have) as the ILIT report from the University of California at Berkeley and the Team Louisiana report from Louisiana State University.Their conclusions: The "hurricane protection system" built by the Corps had serious design and construction flaws, baked into the system over 40 years under administrations of both parties, that caused catastrophic failure in more than 50 locations under storm surge conditions markedly less than the system was advertised to withstand. You and I, federal taxpayers, had paid to flood New Orleans.
Read Shearer's essay here. has an Associated Press story of a Doctor's admission that he had "hastened the demise" regarding a patient under his care during the Katrina aftermath. From the article:

Dr. Ewing Cook said that as staff at Memorial Medical Center desperately tried to care for and evacuate patients, making spot assessments of which ones might survive, he scribbled “pronounced dead at” on the patient’s chart, intending to fill in time and other details later. “I gave her medicine so I could get rid of her faster, get the nurses off the floor,” Cook told ProPublica, an independent nonprofit investigative organization, in a report to be published Sunday in The New York Times Magazine.
More here.

Finally, has a story of the potential candidacy of Gen. Russel Honore, a man many came to know through his work restoring order to New Orleans in the days following Katrina, in the race for David Vitter's Senate seat. Honore, a Republican, would challenge Vitter in the Republican primary. Democrat Rep. Charlie Melancon announced his candidacy yesterday. From the article:
While polls show Vitter as the clear favorite in both the primary and the general election, one very senior Louisiana Republican predicted that if Honore runs, "He wins." As that GOP party elder further explained to the and Bayoubuzz on the promise of confidentiality, "All he has to say is 'Stuck on Stupid', and Vitter is toast."

More here.

Local Bin

By Cecil Doyle

Always liked the term, "Howdie". Be it my earliest cathode-tube-recall of Buffalo Bob on the receiving end of quips & retorts from the wooden Mr. Doody or Cousin Minnie Pearl screeching the term in hickatonic glee; it's very sound as satisfying as a heaping plate of rice 'n gravy. That being said, the area band of hayseed stompers known as The Howdies have self-released a batch of 15 dittties that both simmer and satisfy. With production help from Jay Burton, they've packaged and released a homespun, knee-slap of an album with the boastful title, MADE WITH PURE LIGHTNING. Julian Primeaux more or less fronts the outfit on lead vocals and guitar, flanked by bassist Christopher Slim and the Keller boys (Stuart: harmonica, kazoo & vocals / Austin: percussion & gadgets) waxing it down in back.

They've been a semi-regular staple of the area club scene for at least the past couple of years and this effort definitely bears the fruit of that season. From the opening toe-tapper, "Bogalusa Stomp" on through the finality expressed in "Long Pine Box", a whoopin' good time is guaranteed for all. The bolt bursting bottle of spirit-lifting elixir pictured on the disc's cover, flanked by rusty hammer and fading wallpaper speaks volumes on the sound made within. For more info, check it out at either or

Longtime Lafayette area guitar hero, Micheal Juan Nunez has just released the follow-up to his last disc, ABOUT TO SNAP (which has continuously remained a constant in a good majority of KRVS' programming for the past few years). THE AMERICAN ELECTRIC boasts 12 fine new originals and is MJN's most diverse effort to date. Besides remaining a torch bearer to the Lafayette Slide Sound so prevalent and masterful in the styles of Sonny Landreth and Roddie Romero; Micheal's fingerprints also stream out of Seventies New York-styled punk ("Punks Like You"), true Delta spirit ("Coming Home", "Mr. Jones"), breezy Soul ("Groove With Me"), sexy Prince-like funky bravado ("Hard Sometimes") and a surprising foray into 1920s crooning ala Rudy Vallee ("Goodbye"). In fact overall, his vocal approach comes off as more relaxed and self-assured than ever on this outting which also boasts several fine examples of continuous track sequencing, an art seemingly abandoned by most these days. With the track record of his former band, Riverbabys as well as sitting in with established area artists like Roddie Romero & the Hub City All Stars on a pretty regular basis; Micheal Juan is poised as one of the true bedrocks of Lafayette's musical soundscape. Sample tracks from THE AMERICAN ELECTRIC on his website at

No commercially available recording has arrived yet from Sam Rey. Neither have they gigged much (having to my knowledge, performed maybe just once or twice in public, thus far). But this should in no way deter you from searching out one of the area's best kept new secrets. Like ominous smoke rings lifting from the ashes of Bluerunners (the band who in my humble opinion were most emblematic of the sum of everything musical about the Lafayette area for the past twenty-something years), Mark Meaux and Will Golden ARE Sam Rey. When they debuted recently at The Blue Moon Saloon, a small gathering of locals witnessed a truly unique musical experience. Sitting comfortably side-by-side near the front edge of the tiny stage, an antique lamp table (complete with working lamp) between them serving as platform for their accompanying effects / drum machine; they wailed a brief set of down home, blues-informed dittys that bore little resemblance of the dance inducing rhythms that fueled their former long running vehicle. Meaux's Dylan-by-the-way-of-Grand Coteau-esque vocal delivery stews perfectly with the duo's rootsy musical plate peppered to the fullest by multi-instrumentalist Will Golden on a variety of stringed instruments (steel & slide guitars, banjo, etc.). Every tune sounded like home.....even the spacey, transmission static employed on great original numbers like "Satellite Lights" (perhaps because that particular tune leaves me feeling like I've just walked on the moon!). Besides being able to catch fleeting moments of their tracks regularly on my own weekday radio program on KRVS; about the only other way to currently catch a batch of Sam Rey is by checking out their MySpace page ( or just 'google' or 'bing' them up on your computer and something is bound to happen. Try and keep the feet still with "March On" or wonder just when the New Orleans Tourist Commission will catch hold of and use their new track, "Meet Me In New Orleans" and slap it on every television and radio commercial they produce over the next five years. Expect pure brightness from Sam Rey!

Cecil Doyle, originally from Mamou, knows everything there is to know about music. He hosts the Medicine Ball Caravan every Monday - Thursday at 11am and Jah Mon heard weekly on KRVS 88.7. He also serves at the station's Music Contact.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Another Announcement

Today is announcement day. First new Gator Girls, and now, Rep. Charlie Melancon announces he will run for the U.S. Senate seat now held by David Vitter. He made a nice video too so you don't have to read anymore. This promises to be the first of many such videos that we will be bombarded with by both candidates for the next year. Good times!

Gator Girls

They're dancers not evolutionary hybrids. Half-gator, half-girl. No indeed, they're Gator Girls! The Lafayette Ice Gators announced they're new Gator Girls dance team. Brittany Hale, Krysten Theriot, Kristy Jimenez, Ashton Vilcan, Cha- sidy Gautreaux, and Sheridan Riles. The girls will be led by choreographer April Lafargue and coordinator Lisa Chouest.
There's more here.

He's Fat And We Love Him

One time, long ago, a young man went to New Orleans to see Los Lobos play at Tipitina's. The Lobos came on at 12 midnight, and proceeded to blow said young man's mind till 4 in the morning. The last encore was this Fats Domino classic. Follow the wheel and let yourself be hypnotized and transported. And lets start the weekend!

Disney to Film at Old EVD

This weeks City-Council meeting confirmed that the Disney movie "Secretariat" will film a large portion of the movie in Lafayette Parish. The Advocate reports that according to Marcus Brown, with the Lafayette Entertainment Initiative, Disney will film many scenes at the old Evangeline Downs Racetrack in Carencro and as we mentioned last week, company officials were also recently spotted in Opelousas scouting locations. For more information on the movie, visit or click here for the Secretariat imdb page.

Photo by John McNab

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Katrina 4 Years After

I found this essay by Stephen Sabludowsky on Maybe it's the decongestants I'm on, or maybe I'm just getting soft, but I found it very touching. There's nothing like the plain spoken accounts from Katrina survivors to cut through the hyperbole commonly found in main-stream media.
We are approaching the 4th Anniversary of the most tragic experience
this State has ever encountered—Katrina socking southeast Louisiana and New

There is probably not a single person in this state, and almost
certainly none in the New Orleans region that has not been greatly impacted by
the storm, the breaking of the levees, the fumbling by the federal government
and the finger-pointing by leading public officials at all levels.

I imagine any person who lived in the Southeast region of Louisiana has
his or her own Katrina story.

Most likely it involves evacuation, being uncertain about loved ones
and property, coming home to horror, rebuilding of homes, fighting with
insurance companies, attempting to find a place to live, waiting for FEMA
trailers, consolidating families, re-starting careers, losing hope, losing loved
ones, and yes, just crying.


As I have mentioned before, for almost two years, at times, I simply
started to cry without knowing why.

Yet, I was one of the lucky ones. I did not live in a FEMA trailer, nor
was I dispersed.
True, some of my people close to me left and did not want
to come back home. Their seeing the blue-tarped roofs, the wind-ravaged homes,
the debris all around was just too much for them to bear. Ironically, while some
of us could not wait to never return, others could not return and are tired of

So, on this 4th Anniversary, as we are talking about health care
battles, calling each other horrible names, looking at the most sinister within
our political opposition, I know the bells will ring strong on Saturday and we
will look into our individual and collective souls. We will be thankful we are

Some of us are not. Some of my friends and people I know killed
themselves due to grief. Some are still not able to get out of the shock that
their lives came to a swirl as the hurricane collided with their existences.
They are still immersed in bewilderment.

Story continues here.

Lousiana Water Stories, on GMA

I'm running this post from Jon Bowermaster's blog (see link below) as a reminder to Daily Meaux readers to wake up early enough to catch his segment tomorrow on Good Morning America...or to do the sensible thing and set your Tivo. Viva la "Crack Of Noon" club!
We first went to Southern Louisiana with cameras one year ago; we’ve been back a couple times since and are just wrapping up the editing of a beautiful, provocative film –

SoLa, Louisiana Water Stories” – about man’s relationship with water in a part of the world where everywhere you look you’re surrounded by bayou, swamp or wetlands, the Mississippi River or Gulf of Mexico.

The region is home to the most unique and vital culture in America and every Cajun from Grand Isle to Breaux Bridge, has a story - or two, three or more - about … water.

Theirs are stories with a lot of passion and heart but also a fair amount of dismay. SoLa’s waterways are home to some serious environmental problems, including oil and gas spills, petrochemical waste that has filtered into the air and water, fertilizer run-off from its neighbors and coastal erosion that is disappearing twenty-five square miles of Southern Louisiana each year.

Tomorrow morning (August 27) between 8 and 9 a.m. EST ABC’s “Good Morning America” and Sam Champion are excerpting a piece from our film, taking their own look at one of the most serious and mysterious of SoLa’s problems, a growing Dead Zone in the Gulf of Mexico.

UL Fall Semester

So, the first day of school was quite busy! I only had 4 classes, but 2 of them are each 2 hours long. In addition to that, my day just starts out really early. 8 o'clock AM. Once my classes ended, I got to spend a lot of money on books and art supplies! It was really fun getting to pick out the different charcoal and graphite pencils, conte sticks, erasers, and sketchbooks that I'll be using for my drawing and design classes. The only negative "issue" that occurred was the fact that people parked in my parking zone WITHOUT a parking permit! I pay 45 dollars a semester for a parking spot which I did not get to park in. I hope they all get tickets. Besides the inconvenience, my day was great. I love my classes, the teachers, and everything.

Day two. I had one class today which was Honors seminar. On normal days, we vote on a certain topic and the next class period, they'll have someone come in and give a presentation about the topic we chose. Today, we didn't have topics chosen so the class was rather boring and we got out 20 minutes early. I bought even more art supplies and a text book. I hate how books are so expensive! Even the used ones are way over-priced.

Olivia Melancon is from Lafayette and a first time freshman at ULL. She is documenting her experiences here in a special series for The Daily Meaux

Coffee Concert Tomorrow

Pasa and CC's present another free Coffee Concert tomorrow from 6pm - 7pm at the CC's in River Ranch by City Club (not the one closer to Kaliste Saloom). Tomorrow's show will feature Drew Landry.

And speaking of Drew is a pretty interesting 7 minute segment from a documentary film featuring Landry called "Carry My Cross". The movie documented the making of his latest record and tour for the past year as he worked odd jobs when necessary to help support it all. According to the promotional liner it "examines a slice of America rarely seen on the evening news, with a cinema verite style, following Singer/Songwriter Drew Landry through one-year of his life as he records an album, tours, and inevitably fails or succeeds. Through interviews with friends, family, ex-lovers, employers and band members, we capture Landry's essence as well as the disenfranchised America which inspires his politically truthful songs."

Big Checks All Around

Governor Bobby Jindal was in Abbeville yesterday to pass out another big check. This time it was for almost $12 million, which is to be used for:
  • $8.36 million to go toward hurricane recovery efforts
  • $3.46 million to support local hazard mitigation to protect Vermilion from future damage from hurricanes
  • $44,000 to the Vermilion Parish Police Jury to purchase an emergency generator for the Police Jury Municipal Complex
  • $28,665 to Delcambre for water treatment plant improvements
  • $16,667 to Maurice for police protection
  • $16,667 to Kaplan for water system improvements
  • $16,670 to Abbeville for improvements to A.A. Comeaux Park
  • $16,666 to Erath for purchasing communication equipment
The Abbeville Meridonal has a full report.

Reminder: Selling Kidneys is Illegal

If you've got $75,000 and want to buy a kidney, technically you could on Craigslist as some 41 year old male in Lafayette has his posted right now....but we'd advise against it. As KATC reports, selling human organs is illegal. That isn't stopping the black market though as the number of human organs popping up on craigslist is growing.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Hey That's My bad Idea....No It's Mine

update: Seagal: Lawman.

In a breathtaking development to yesterday's post about a new reality show on A&E starring Stephen Seagal as a cop (he really is one), controversy has erupted where only apathy should have dared tread. Seems that A&E has sued Genuine Entertainment for asserting that A&E stole the idea for the Seagal show from them. So, hypothetically, you can steal an idea, and then sue the folks you stole it from, just for them saying you stole it? I didn't know yo could do that. Of, course, A&E doesn't think they stole the idea, hence the lawsuit. Still, what is it about this guy, Seagal, is he a magic man? Does he have powers? Podnuh, he's got the power to kick your mouth. Just talking 'bout Seagal. More here.

Please...Its James Burton and Albert Lee

Here's a story that is really just an indulgence to highlight two of my all time favorite guitar players, Shreveport's own James Burton, and Brit, Albert Lee. The two have arguably done more to define "twang" than all other guitar players combined. Which is why it's a bit silly to report that the duo failed in an attempt to break the Guinness Book of World Records mark for largest guitar ensemble this past weekend in Shreveport. The current record was set in Germany in 2007 with 1,802 people tallied, while Burton and Lee could scrounge up only 875 participants. Fear not, Burton says he and his friends will continue to try to break the record until they pull it off. There is a horrible video of the event complete with a lame Elvis impersonator (has this ever been a funny gag? Ever?) here. And loads of youtubage of both Burton and Lee here. Enjoy.

Photo by mandy-pixels

Monday, August 24, 2009

KXK C-Ya 2

Longtime country radio morning show host, Scott Daniels is no longer on the air at 99.1 KXKC. As we reported back in June, his co-host Casey Carter seperated from the company, and now, Scott Daniels is gone too. According to the KXKC website, former afternoon guy Ray Robicheaux will take over mornings and weekend guy Big Al is filling in afternoons. Daniels started at KXKC when the station launched on August 21, 1992 but rumor has it that the station was never able to recover from the profanity ridden on-air altercation that the Independent reported on here.

Photo by Ken Romero

A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge

The New York Times ran a profile of Josh Neufeld, writer and illustrator of the graphic novel A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge. The book recounts the stories of seven survivors who were living in and around New Orleans, and is based on research and interviews conducted by Neufeld. George Gene Gustines wrote the feature for the Times. From the article:

“All my comics are reality based,” said Mr. Neufeld, who lives in Brooklyn and has long contributed art for “American Splendor,” the autobiographical comics written by Harvey Pekar. The winding road leading to the New Orleans novel began when Mr. Neufeld signed up to work with the Red Cross after the hurricane hit, serving as a disaster response worker in Biloxi, Miss., for almost a month. He said the catalyst for volunteering was 9/11. “Having been in New York when the towers fell, I remember that overwhelming feeling of helplessness and displaced anger,” he said. “When Katrina hit, I saw what was happening, and I realized that I, as a single person, could somehow help.” Mr. Neufeld blogged about his experience and self-published a collection of his dispatches called “Katrina Came Calling.”

The novel was released last week published by Pantheon. It's a fascinating article. Read it here.

LSU Vs. Swine Flu

NPR ran a story yesterday regarding the 50 cases of Swine Flu reported at LSU during sorority rush this past week. NPR reporter Larry Abramson interviewed LSU spokesperson Herb Vincent, as well as officials from other universities as to what steps can be taken to stem the flu outbreak. Listen to or read the story here.

Photo by kozumel

Here He Comes To Save The Day

Thomas Conroy, writing for, reports two equally amazing/disturbing items today. First, the A&E network has a new reality series starring Steven Seagal set to air later this year, aptly titled, Steven Seagal: Lawman. Which leads us to the second amazing/disturbing item: Steven Seagal has been a fully commissioned deputy with the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office in New Orleans, for the last 20 years. Really? The show will chronicle Seagal's activities as a real cop. Not sure whether to laugh or vomit. Read the story here. Seagal also has his own energy drink called Lighting Bolt. That's him as he appears on the can.

Photo by Brookage

Tell The Army Corps Of Engineers To Set Their Tivos

At the risk of contributing to media-induced Katrina fatigue, I thought it worth mentioning this post from Eliza Browning, an associate producer for the CNN program AC360.

Eliza Browning
AC360° Associate Producer

We’re kicking off a weeklong special on New Orleans this week. It’s been four years since Hurricane Katrina pummeled the Louisiana city and we go back to see how the area continues to persevere and rebuild despite significant uphill battles.

Sean Callebs reports on how city leaders are trying to rebuild New Orleans’ public schools. Katrina’s floodwaters washed away a school system that was already floundering even before the storm. But after the storm wiped the slate clean, city leaders were given an opportunity to rebuild public schools. New Orleans has become a lab for some of the most ambitious education experiments in the country – including new programs, innovative teaching methods and an array of charter schools. Although overall test scores have improved and success stories abound, the system isn’t perfect. Sean takes a look at what’s working and why some students are still falling through the cracks.

No More Rail For Us

As we mentioned earlier the month, the state was requesting federal funding for a high speed rail to run between Baton Rouge and New Orleans. Well now, after much national criticism, Governor Bobby Jindal has done an about face and has declared that he will not request funding for the project. Local business owners and the Baton Rouge Chamber of Commerce, who were originally consulted, are now surprised at this recent turn of events. Bill Barrow with the Times-Picayune has more.

Photo by dsb nola

Sunday, August 23, 2009

State Dems Accuse Vitter of Ethics Violations

The State Democratic Party has filed a complaint against Senator David Vitter saying that he is using taxpayer-funded Town Hall meetings as campaign events. According to The Hill:
Louisiana Democratic Party Chairman Chris Whittington filed a sworn complaint with the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Ethics Thursday accusing U.S. Sen. David Vitter of using taxpayer-funded town hall meetings to engage in campaign activity. Whittington’s complaint is based on Vitter’s statements at several taxpayer-funded town hall meetings criticizing U.S. Rep. Charlie Melancon, a potential re-election opponent. At one town hall meeting, Vitter encouraged the audience to "keep up the pressure on" Melancon.
More here.

Hydrilla Problem in Henderson

KLFY has a video report about the Hydrilla problem in Henderson Lake that is literally suffocating out whole sections of the lake. Furthermore it seems that run off fertilizer from nearby farms could actually be helping the invasive plant grow. According to the town's mayor, Sherbin Collette, the state Wildlife and Fisheries recently sprayed an herbicide to try and kill the plant, but he is skeptical. Collette believes the best way to solve the problem is by lowering the water level and allowing the sun to kill it naturally. He says that would save taxpayers thousands of dollars in spraying costs. Either way, the herbicide has already been sprayed so now it's just a wait and see. More here.

Photo by lsqcp

Beaded Treasures

Here's a super cute accessory that would go great with any outfit.....River's Bend Bead Studio is a Lafayette jewelry maker on Etsy with tons of really awesome one of a kind beaded earrings, bracelets and necklaces. This particular necklace is a double strand of pearls in varying colors with sterling silver, vermeil, and copper disks along with Swarovski crystals sprinkled in for some extra sparkle. This handmade treasure would look great all year round! Necklace shown is $45 and available here.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Saints A Twitter

As requested by Daily Meaux reader, and all around good guy, Scott Jordan, here's an unofficial list of Saints related twitter accounts. Tweet on!

Drew Brees:

Malcolm Jenkins:

Chip Vaughn:

Billy Miller:

Darren Sharper:

Courtney Roby:

Pierre Thomas:

Jeremy Shockey:

Leigh Torrence:

Jeff Charleston:

Roman Harper:

Reggie Bush:

Usama Young:

Misc. pages
Saints Report twitter page:

Jeff Duncan:

Brian Allee-Walsh:

New Orleans Saints official site:

ESPN's Chris Mortenson:

Oh Mose!

Well, Mama always said trouble comes in two's. Actually, I never heard her say that. What I did hear was a federal jury returned a guilty verdict in the corruption trial of Mose Jefferson, brother of former congressman William Jefferson, himself convicted of corruption charges less than a month ago. Does anybody watch The Office?

The ran the AP story. Read more here. Ah corruption, if I didn't laugh I'd cry.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Ochsner And Rouses Partner For "Choose Healthy" Campaign

Who doesn't start their day scanning Well, I did today, because there is an article about Rouses Markets teaming up with Ochsner Health System for a "Choose Healthy" campaign, intended to educate people about the benefits of smart food and lifestyle choices, disease prevention, and regular medical checkups. A recent study by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows there is definitely a need for nutrition education here. Louisiana is the eighth most obese state in the country with nearly 30 percent of all residents considered medically obese. From the article:
Rouses customers will find healthy, Ochsner-endorsed eating recommendations in every aisle of their market, and be able to take advantage of Ochsner education programs and materials and free health screenings, including blood pressure, cholesterol, glucose and body fat. Rouses’ Chef Nino will be incorporating lighter and heart-healthy recipes into his cooking demonstrations. Customers will also be able to access recipes and information on smart food choices, proper meal planning and disease-specific diet alternatives via the Choose Healthy link at both the Rouses and Ochsner Web sites.

More here.

Lafayette Drunk Driving Numbers Skyrocket

KATC is reporting that the number of Drunk Driving cases in Lafayette has skyrocketed this year. So far the Lafayette Police Department is reporting 300 cases of DWI year to date, which surpasses all of 2008 by about 50 cases...and we still have 4 1/2 months left to go. Tonight the Lafayette Police Department will be conducting a sobriety checkpoint somewhere within the city limits between the hours of 9pm and 3am so be careful and if you choose to drink, don't drive.

Photo by versageek

JCPenney Hopes To Catch A Thief

The new Louisiana Avenue JC Penney's was broken into Wednesday and company officials believe this is the latest in a string of robberies the store has been experiencing lately. On Monday a store near Covington was hit with the same M.O.....the robbers come in through a hole in the roof that they cut and then lowered themselves down with ropes. According to the Shreveport Times the burglers then disabled the alarm system and walked around the store stuffing jewelry, clothing and other items into plastic bags. In Covington, the theives made off with over $1.5 million worth of goods. National Jeweler has more on the Covington heist and the Advertiser has details on the Lafayette robbery. JC Penney's is located in the new Stirling Lafayette Shopping Center along with Target, Petco, Lane Bryant, Rue 21, Cacique, Hibbett Sports, Maurices, Squire Formal Wear, AT&T, GameStop, GNC, Jackson Hewitt Tax Service, Chick-fil-A, and Taco Bell.

Photo by scottwills

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Captain...The Interferometers Detect Nothing!

Not real sure what this article means, but I couldn't let my own limitations deprive our more intellectually inclined readers of a science story happening right here in Louisiana. Clara Moskowitz, of reports:
The Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory Scientific Collaboration (LIGO) is a set of instruments in Louisiana and Washington built to search for evidence of gravitational waves, which are theoretical ripples in space-time thought to be caused by the acceleration of mass. No one has yet directly detected these waves, though they are predicted by Einstein's theory of General Relativity, and are widely thought to permeate our universe.In theory, every time mass accelerates — even when you rise up out of your chair — the curvature of space-time changes, and ripples are produced. However, the gravitational waves produced by one person are so small as to be negligible. The waves produced by large masses, though, such as the collision of two black holes or a large supernova explosion, could be large enough to be detected.

Do with that what you will. The rest of the article is here.

Photo by David R. Carroll

The Killah

I love this clip so much. The drummer's shades, the synchronized clapping in the audience, the pitiful attempts at pyrotechnics, and most of all Louisiana legend Jerry Lee Lewis. Ding dang that looks like fun!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Yet More Sam Rey

Another installment in a series of self-promotion. Sam Rey (Will and I) has recorded and posted two new songs and a remix of a previously posted song, all here on our Myspace page. The tunes are as follows: Meet Me In New Orleans...that's the remix; Sakes Alive..check out Will's solo; and Kite Tails...a tear jerker if there ever was one. Click on the link and join us! Then go spread the word of Sam Rey.

Virtual Jewelry

Ever wondered how that big ole diamond ring would look on your hand? Well, Stuller Settings has come out with a new iPhone app called 'Live Diamond Try On' that'll do just that....allow you to virtually try on jewelry and see how it looks. The technology is pretty cool - you pick out a ring you like, take a photo of your hand and the app will put the two images together for you. You can read more about this technology here on National Jeweler or on the Stuller Settings website here, where you can download the app.

Are School Uniforms Working?

We're only a couple of days into the new school year and the Daily Comet asked the question 'after 10 years, do school uniforms really work'. While there are too many varying factors for them to make any firm conclusions, it's an interesting article and the comments from parents and students are especially insightful. Among other things, they say that the uniforms are more expensive and that making everyone wear the same color scheme hasn't deterred teasing. Kids now make fun if you're not wearing a "Dickie" brand generic khaki pant instead of a Walmart brand khaki pant. I guess kids will be kids... What do you think - are school uniforms working?

Photo by dprevite

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

New Louisiana Film Museum to Open

The Baton Rouge Business Report is reporting that a new museum dedicated to the over 400 films featuring Louisiana as their backdrop will open next month at the Riverwalk in New Orleans. The Louisiana Film Museum is a labor of love for local movie buffs who wanted to share their collections of memorabilia so they got together and created the museum. It will feature film clips, educational classes, posters, props, costumes and more and they've got a pretty interesting website too. It offers a huge listing of all Louisiana major motion pictures, documentaries and tv movies along with plot lines and their casts arranged by the year it came out. So far they have listed everything from 1908 - 1996 and it's a pretty impressive list of actors and films.....check it out here.

Hey It's Not A Big Flaming Pepper

Controversy has landed upon Nicholls State University in the form of it's new mascot logo. In an attempt to modernize, their old logo of a grey uniformed, white bearded Confederate Colonel named "Tillou", the University commissioned a new logo and mascot, complete with market research and a cost of $30,000. The results have not been met with resounding approval.
"It looked like a Nazi soldier -- a very angry Nazi soldier," said Nicholls alumna Hollie Garrison, 27, who saw the logo online for the first time this month. "My jaw dropped. I was speechless. I kind of thought it was a joke." Garrison, who lives in Lafayette, has started a group on Facebook called "I hate the new Tillou a.k.a. 'Nicholls the Nazi.'¤" As of Saturday afternoon, the site had attracted more than 275 members.

Director of University Relations, Renee Piper, says creating a logo that pleased everyone was almost an impossible task.
"Consider how challenging it is to create a mascot that would please multiple generations of Nicholls alums," Piper said. "There was never a prayer that everyone would love it."
While the university is not planning to rescind the design, Piper said it could fade away within a couple of years if no one buys the merchandise.

"But the market will do that," she said. "It's not our job to undo all the work of the focus group. This logo is what was voted on in a very inclusive and open process."

Read the article here byJenny Hurwitz of the Times Picayune.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Tilted Kilt Coming to Old Bennigan's

To pick up where KATC's Evan Anderson left off on his report that the old Bennigans / Shenanigans / River City Grill is now closed but construction is under way for a new restaurant - a franchise called the "Tilted Kilt". The concept is a Gaelic pub but with Hooters type waitresses in short kilts and halter tops. On the Tilted Kilt website, they describe the restaurant as a "Celtic theme sports pub staffed with beautiful servers....the uniforms would be knee-high socks and short, sexy plaid kilts with matching plaid halter tops under white shirts tantalizingly tied to show off the midriff". The menu looks pretty standard for a franchise - lots of quesadilla's, nachos, burgers, wraps, sandwiches but they do offer Irish entrees like Sheperd's Pie, braised sausages, and "Fat Bastard's Meatloaf Sandwich".

Photo by Chad Horwedel

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Storm Watching

With the first 2 named storms of the season brewing in the Tropics, now is a good time to revisit KATC's weather blog. Rob Perillo, Dave Baker and Kari Hall do a great job of updating and explaining what's going on with the weather. Tropical Storms Ana and Bill are coming one right behind the other and they are watching them closely. Storm season is here folks so get your plywood and batteries ready and bookmark the KATC blog today.

Saints Bring Back John Carney

The New Orleans Saints reacquired kicker John Carney because their current kicker, Garrett Hartley is facing a 4 game suspension. The reason why is unclear and has not been disclosed but Mike Triplett of the Times-Picayune has a full report.

Photo by David Reber

Disney Looking to Film in Opelousas

The Walt Disney Company will begin shooting a feature film, "Secretariat", in Louisiana next month. According to they are holding casting calls for horses right now to portray the legendary triple crown winner. Diane Lane is going to star in the movie and KLFY is reporting that they are interested in filming in Opelousas. Disney officials reportedly inquired about filming in the Palace Cafe and are interested in leasing the old Delta Grand building. The Times-Picayune has a full story about the movie but didn't confirm the exact shooting locales.

Photo by Banamine

We Sure Do Spend A Lot on Gas

The Natural Resource Defense Council recently came out with a study ranking states according to their usage of oil and gas and Louisiana ranked #5 among the states that use the most oil and gas. The study also looked at how much of their income people are spending on oil and gas and it turns out Louisianians are spending over 7% of their income on gas. They found that rising gas prices, combined with the economic downturn, are making people more vulnerable to changes in oil prices and while some states are taking drastic steps to reduce oil dependence through smart clean-transportation policies Louisiana isn't one of them. Fast Company Magazine took it a step further and looked at that list of states and compared it to how they rank according to household income levels. They point out that the states that spend the most on oil and gas are among the poorest in the nation and tend to have lower than average household income levels. That Fast Company article can be see here and the ranking of household incomes by states can be found here.

Graphic: NRDC

Swine Flu Hits LSU Sorority Row

20 cases of the H1N1 Swine Flu have been reported by members of various LSU sororities and the timing couldn't be worse for them. The girls came down with the illness during sorority rush activities this week and while no recruitment events are canceled, the girls are required to stay in bed for the week. JJordan Blum with the Advocate has more.