Thursday, October 28, 2004

I have eaten at The Hummingbird. My mother-in-law hasn't.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Read the first comment here.

You don't know much about my daddy. Daddy was Joseph the carpenter. Though we didn't have much, on Sunday mornings we would drive downtown in the Ford to the Commerce Street Newsstand so he could buy the London Observer. I stood between them on the seats. Must say, wasn't hurt there. Onionskin and 50 cents.

UPDATE: Right down from the Kirby Building and A. Harris.
When I'm done kicking Craig Johnson in the shins for taking photos at night, go to J-Birds for a look at truly lovely craftsmanship.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

The light is right, but the weather is too warm.

When I was a little girl, before going to school, this is the season that Mrs. Green, who lived next door, and my mother would go shopping.

Mother had hardly a cent to spend, but after coffee in the morning the girls would pack me up and set out in Mrs. Green's finned Chrysler.

Mrs. Green was a craftswoman. If you've ever seen a felt Christmas tree skirt with sequinned and beaded figures, or a cheap bird cage bronzed and filled with plastic greenery and not-very-authentic fake birds, or a Barbie dressed in a pyramidal pile of gathered net, you have a window into my young world.

Her house was cluttered with stuff.

I loved it, and I loved shopping with them.

I don't know where she picked up her ideas, maybe Good Housekeeping or some other magazine, but we would search through piles of fripperies and bolts of fabric.

Mother didn't have a car. Mrs. Green would take us to what they called the A. Harris shopping center which was down around Polk St., so Mother could trade stamps in at the S&H Green Stamp store.

When Patricia and I broke down our Mother's house in Dallas, the tacky fake brass umbrella stand that we sold came from there.

A. Harris? Who was A. Harris? Many Dallasites grew up with Sanger-Harris, and I miss it still, but who was A. Harris?

I did a little research, and the best I can do in a short time is this.

Monday, October 25, 2004

Elvis and Prescilla, at it again.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Good grief!

We watch HGTV, and the imagination of the designers is getting more fun by the day. Here are designations:

Mediterranean Revival
Old World Eclectic
International Eclectic
Contemporary Traditional

You can play, too! What was the last composite you heard?

UPDATE: In comments, Kim Crawford adds

Trailerpark Egalitarian

UPDATE II: Heard last night

Global Exotic

Thursday, October 21, 2004

His heritage? Who cares? Is he a good dog or a bad dog?
Reason #2477 for us not to have cell phones:

Early on today, Lyman and I decided to try a recipe that called for a 2-1/4 pound pork loin to be rubbed with a selection of dry herbs.

When he came in from the grocery, he said he wished he'd had his cell phone. He would have called.

Our conversation:


"When I got there, all they had near that size were seasoned pork loins, like barbecue, or lemon and garlic. They had a John Morrell that only had onion, but we've bought that before and it was tough."

"So, what did you do?"

"I bought one of these big ones. We can cut it into three or four pieces and one will be just right."

"That's what I would have done."

"I wish I'd had my cell phone with me."


"I need to use it sometime."
Here is a happy confluence of research and luck at Chateau Plumage.

Sunday, October 17, 2004


I guess there are women or men so motherly that any old animal will fall into their lap and let them pare their toenails. My old black cat Shadow took it very well.

I am not one.

For three years I have worked with Lucy, making much of her toes and showing her my own manicure. She's always watched, but never cared much for such attention to her toes.


This weekend when I cut and filed my nails she was ready for it herself. I could pick up individual toes and use a rough emery on each of them.

This could save both of us a lot of anxiety.
Dr. Joyner notes this article about the death of journalist Pierre Salinger. I grew up hearing that name.

Interesting to me, though, is this bit:
Mrs. Salinger, spoke from Le Thon, near Avignon in the Provence region, where the couple moved four years ago to run a bed-and-breakfast inn. She said her husband decided to move to France because he was so deeply opposed to the presidency of George W. Bush. "He was very upset because he thought Bush was not fit to be president. He said he would leave if Bush became president and he did," Mrs. Salinger said.
No doubt Mr. Salinger did not like Mr. Bush as president, but a bed and breakfast inn in southern France sounds more like a retirement destination than a political refuge to me.

Friday, October 15, 2004

Does this girl look as flirty to you as she does to me?

That's Jesse Manning of Shooting from the Lip beside her.

(That silly link won't work. Scroll down to the October 9 post.)
The Great Mississippi Balloon Race weekend starts today.

The weather looks good this year.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Just a note on the Dem's use of Mary Cheney in these debates. I have never printed anything here about my gay brother that I didn't vet with him in advance.

UPDATE: I've been reading an awful lot about this business around the internet. I don't mean to imply that the Democrats are shameless or the Republicans are shameful, and yak, yak, yak in this context.

The point I'd like to make is that the mere fact of my brother's homosexuality is not much of a predictor as to how he thinks about any topic, political or other. I don't think he'd care for his name to be brought into any debate where he wasn't asked about the topic himself. Unless I question him specifically, I don't have a clue to what he thinks.

He does like vodka martinis and he does think that most call vodka, like Gray Goose, is overpriced. I might just drive over and spend election night with him.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Must say, I was so terribly thrown by the first question in this debate that I didn't hear much else.
The illegal immigration problem is a tough one.

I live among African-Americans. The woman who didn't very well take care of my mother in Dallas was more interested in having a data-entry job that paid $7 an hour than a house-cleaning job that can pay $10 an hour.

It gets back to Camille Paglia's notion of "revalorizing" trades. On an everyday basis, does the average American need a lawyer or a plumber? A surgeon or a dependable and honest car mechanic?

Immigrants doing dry-wall work in Dallas during the building boom were making $50,000 a year, which I, as a small-town journalist on my best day could never sneeze at.
WTF? Will our children grow up in a world as safe as ours?

My poor parents bought metal ID tags for me and we had regular duck-and-cover drills at school.

A president was assassinated, a presidential contender was assassinated, and a major civil rights leader was assassinated before I was out of elementary school.

I'd hope we can do a little better.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

You know what I think about this election?

Me and mine are out of the fire zone. If James Wolcott thinks it's equivalent that I get popped by Gaia and he gets popped by Allah, then he can handle it.

We came out pretty well. I won. Not everybody did. This time.
Bi-focals, anyone?

I took a large envelope to the post office to mail.

The clerk behind the counter had his glasses at the end of his nose, looking through them to read the number on the meter. I had my glasses at the end of my nose, looking over them to count out the correct change in my hand.

Same pose, two different purposes, and neither one of us can stand to wear bi-focals.

I replaced mine with the cool Transitions lenses so I can have sun protection without keeping up with shades.
Jordana is close upon expanding the Axis of Weevil by one.

Perhaps she can take comfort that she won't be making introductions thiswise:
Dear Shellie,

I wanted to share with you my family's recent addition. My daughter-in-law Theresa and son Paul who live in Southern Alabama had a surprise Friday Morning Sept. 17th when Rider Sage Frusha came into the world weighing in at 10 lbs. even and 22 in. long with jet black hair. Of course the most beautiful baby in all of Alabama. But as Paul Harvey would say here's "The Rest of the Story". He was born at home in the bathroom with my daughter in law and son the day after Ivan came through. No power, no drugs, no coach. My daughter in law is my new HERO. She cut the cord, tied the cord and had him wrapped in a towel when the EMT's arrived. Baby and Mom are great; dad is still a little bit shook up.
This letter was sent to Shellie Rushing Tomlinson at her site All Things Southern where you can find Shellie's observations from The Porch and, well, things Southern.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

When Michael, Lyman's older son, was in nursery school in New Orleans, his teacher taught the tykes a little song:
Sharing time is a happy time.
We share our books and we share our toys,
And have a very, very happy, happy time.
I don't know where Lucy learned that, but she believes it to the end of each quivering feather, unless she's the one expected to share.

A few days ago I gave her half a pomegranate. She'd just piddled with it a bit when I picked it up and separated out a few seeds to eat myself.

She stood stock still and looked at me with disbelieving horror.

"You didn't do that, did you?" she seemed to ask.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

I was working on the jigsaw puzzle this afternoon. We've worked about 2/3 of it.

"Jaaaaanis," called a little voice.


"What you doing?"
After last night's debate, which I watched on MSNBC, a young woman from the Christian Science Monitor described what she had seen on stage as a "bloodbath".

My, my. We are a sensitive crowd these days.

She should catch Lyman and me on a party day.

Friday, October 08, 2004

I just don't read these debates the same way other people do.

I thought Kerry looked more engaging and more himself than he ever has. I found him far easier to watch than John Edwards earlier this week. Perhaps I just prefer a more mature man. And such an improvement over Gore years ago. I can imagine Kerry in the living room for four years.

Bush was better this week as well.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

For the Thursday Three:
1) Favorite country/western/bluegrass songs today - London Homesick Blues, You Were Always on My Mind, and Crazy.

2) Favorite singers - too many

3) I don't listen to any radio stations unless I'm in the car, which is rare, or the Tigers game is not on TV.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

When, I ask, did the Democratic Party in America turn into the party of the fabulously wealthy with good intentions?

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

The best slam that Cheney got into Edwards was the note that Edwards had established an S corporation, which saved him, personally, $600,000 in taxes.

Edwards rejoined that he had paid all the taxes he owed.

We're pretty well-off people. We don't have $600,000.

UPDATE: My understanding of the corporation is limited and this post is probably wrong.

I still take exception to the notion that Kerry and Edwards have a better understanding of the struggles of the middle class than do Bush and Cheney.
I think Lyman could whip John Edwards black and blue in a courtroom. And he doesn't blink like a girl. He liked criminal defense, not trial lawyering.

Mr. Edwards has the same prissiness in this debate that so annoyed me from George Bush in the first.

Joe Lieberman sure looks good these days.
Lucy will never suffer much neglect if she has any say-so.

I was concentrating on working a wicked, dark spot in the jigsaw puzzle when a little-girl voice across the room called "Hey, Lucy".
Here is a piece about the monarch migration at the Gulf coast.

The Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge is here.

I have written to find out what they think will happen with the monarchs this year.

Monday, October 04, 2004

The Vidalia fire chief is still awaiting news on the investigation of the July 3 4 fire that burned the local McDonald's. He'd like to hear something, as the debris cannot be cleaned up until the investigation is complete. Believe me, it's not a pretty main street in the best of times. A fire ruin only makes it worse.

The report will come from the regional fire marshall in Baton Rouge.

Maybe not. Here is a story from the Concordia Sentinel.

Sunday, October 03, 2004

Lucy went to bed early tonight. She'd had it with company, and was telling them so all day long. She didn't say "Sit down. Be still. Tell people not to call." She shrieked.

This is usually a quiet house. It is not quiet when the boys come.
When I was watching Ivan closely, I ran across a mention of these guys. Particularly interesting was that this troupe strapped down an SUV in Gulf Shores, equipped with weather gauges and webcams to record the hurricane's landfall. Some video clips are here.
Well, yes, the food always looks fine, but the descriptions call for a visit someday.

Saturday, October 02, 2004

I'm considering taking Lucy out of the house today.

Lyman and the boys will be watching the Yellowshoe Tigers play Georgia in Georgia on TV at 2:30, and I'm not sure she should be exposed to that kind of language. Maybe Big Daddy will come to watch with them. That might tone it down a bit.

(Don't get the wrong idea. They all have excellent manners and seldom descend to profanity. Some situations just overstrain them.)

LSU does not have the team it had last year when it beat Georgia twice, and Georgia carries a grudge.

These boys are serious about their sports. Jason's cellphone rings with the opening chords of "Eye of the Tiger".


1) Too much for Big Daddy at 85. He'll watch it at home in his bed. Jason has been instructed "No kicking anything indoors."

2) Georgia is up 24-0 with six minutes left in the second quarter. It's "colorful" around here.

3) The half closed with Georgia up 24-10. Big Daddy has arrived. Discussion ensues.

4) Michael says "This is the last time I come home for a game. Y'all don't bring luck."

5) 38-10 at the beginning of the fourth quarter. Michael's phone rings. "I ain't answering no calls from Baton Rouge. I'm not talking about this game."

6) Nick Saban doesn't seem to feel like an extra million dollars today.

7) 45-16. The kicker missed the extra point.

8) Jason changes the ring on the phone.

9) Duck gumbo for dinner. They'll feel better.
Lyman's boys came in from Baton Rouge at about 10 last night, after we put Lucy to bed.

They come with appetites and things to tell, showers to take, people to call and round up, laundry to do, people to introduce - a little circus of homecoming.

Several times before they departed for a night on the town - which can be a lot of fun in Natchez, especially when topped with watching the sun rise over the Mississippi with a Bloody Mary Under-the-Hill, or so I've been told - Lucy shrieked at them to hush up and go to sleep.

The kids came in very late (as in I heard voices at daylight) and are snoozing in their beds.

It's everything I can do to keep Lucy from getting back at them.