Sunday, January 25, 2009

Coming up in The Gambit: Politics, spies, arts, and crime

Posted By on Sun, Jan 25, 2009 at 6:11 AM

This week's Gambit will be out this afternoon. A preview:

• The 2010 mayoral race is almost exactly one year away, but contenders are already positioning themselves at the table. Clancy DuBos takes a look at who's in, who's out, and who's keeping their cards close to the vest....

Common Ground was one of the first on-the-ground, citizen-driven aid groups to form in New Orleans after Katrina. Now it turns out that one of the group's founders became an FBI informant, though it's not clear when he did so, or what it means for Common Ground. David Winkler-Schmit tries to piece it together with an interview with the informant, Brandon Darby....

• Alison Fensterstock talks to burlesque queen Catherine D'Lish. Alison also takes the measure of the Grammy-nominated Cajun group Pine Leaf Boys....

• And it's time for our semi-annual bridal supplement, L'Image.

• Web extra: With crime on everyone's mind again, a group of citizens has set up NOLA Crime Alerts, a system that sends real-time text messages about street crimes to your cellphone. The service is free, and so far covers the French Quarter and the Marigny/Bywater (other neighborhoods to be added soon). As the Web site explains:

One night soon after the tragic murder of Wendy Byrne in the French Quarter, a friend of Wendy's was mugged in the Marigny. Concerned friends sent out text messages to others warning them of the specific area to avoid and to be careful in general - and urging everyone to pass the message along. Ten copies of the same text message and three phone calls later, the idea to set up an SMS Crime Alert Network was born, with the intention of warning as many people as possible of recent and/or in-progress crimes without inundating anyone with multiple copies of the same message.

SIGN UP FOR GROUPS:

* Central City: Send a text to 68398 with JOIN8441Q in the body of the message from your cellphone, or follow this link: http://tatango.com/join/8441-Q0MTAuM

* French Quarter: Send a text to 68398 with JOIN8338M in the body of the message from your cellphone, or follow this link: http://tatango.com/join/8338-MzODAuN

* Holy Cross: Send a text to 68398 with JOIN8408Q in the body of the message from your cellphone, or follow this link: http://tatango.com/join/8408-QwODAuN

* Irish Channel: Send a text to 68398 with JOIN8439Q in the body of the message from your cellphone, or follow this link: http://tatango.com/join/8439-QzOTAuM

* Lakeview: Send a text to 68398 with JOIN8406Q in the body of the message from your cellphone, or follow this link: http://tatango.com/join/8406-QwNjAuO

* Lower Garden District: Send a text to 68398 with JOIN8440Q in the body of the message from your cellphone, or follow this link: http://tatango.com/join/8440-Q0MDAuN

* Marigny/Bywater: Send a text to 68398 with JOIN8337M in the body of the message from your cellphone, or follow this link: http://tatango.com/join/8337-MzNzAuM

* Mid City: Send a text to 68398 with JOIN8404Q in the body of the message from your cellphone, or follow this link: http://tatango.com/join/8404-QwNDAuM

* Treme: Send a text to 68398 with JOIN8443Q in the body of the message from your cellphone, or follow this link: http://tatango.com/join/8443-Q0MzAuM

Mardi Gras is coming. Be safe out there; watch out for one another. See you in the newsboxes today, or find the electronic edition of this week's paper online sometime Monday afternoon.

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