BASKET-WHAT?: We know New Orleans is in football mania right now, but a team called the New Orleans Hornets would like to remind you that they start training camp today.
DUDE, YOU'RE GETTING A DELL, AND IT'S BEEN SITTING ON A SHELF FOR MONTHS: WDSU led its 10 p.m. news last night with images of computers still boxed up on shelves in the inspector general's office. Sounds like not much has changed since last January, when we reported the IG's office still didn't have networked computers or a dedicated server.
CHINESE DEMOCRACY: State Sen. Julie Quinn, who has been a bulldog on the issue of Chinese drywall, is in Washington today to lobby for legislation against the use of the material.
A LONGER CAUSEWAY?: The Lake Pontchartrain Causeway may no longer be the longest bridge in the world, if the Qatar-Bahrain Friendship Causeway gets built; it's planned to be 25 miles long, as compared to our Causeway's mere 23.6. Construction is skedded to start next year. (Hat tip to Chad Bower at WWL-TV.)
FOOTPRINTS IN MID-CITY: "Inside the Footprint" examines the structures currently sitting where the proposed LSU/VA hospital is scheduled to be built:
We seek to document the "footprint" of the proposed LSU-VA Hospital slated for construction in Lower Mid-City in New Orleans, Louisiana.
We believe locating the hospital(s) in other downtown locations, such as the vacant Charity Hospital, represents a better plan for moving forward - one that does not involve the eviction of numerous individuals and families who returned after Hurricane Katrina, the destruction of viable businesses, and the elimination of many historic structures.
While much of the footprint is in tough shape by a number of measurements, we hope to focus on the many aspects that nonetheless show that the neighborhood's wholesale elimination to make way for vast swaths of parkings lots, for example, is unwise and should be avoided.
KATRINA FOOTBALL: The city collectively groaned during last Sunday's Saints game when Fox Sports saw fit to run images of New Orleans in the throes of the federal floods. Michael Homan asks the question that was on my mind:
I believe it is important to let people across the country know that we still need help rebuilding. But at what point will we be able to watch a football game and not have to hear about Katrina? At the same time, my passion for the Saints is inextricably tied to my experiences during the flood and afterwards.
We play the NY Jets this Sunday. Why is it appropriate to show our city under water after the federally maintained levees gave way, but not appropriate to show the twin towers collapsing?
AND FINALLY: The Reggie-Kim romance is back on (at least in the press), and the Web site Sports Odds is wondering how such a momentous
Photograph by Jonathan Bachman
Welcome back Pierre Thomas! The Saints won a defensive battle in Buffalo 27-7, thanks in part to a monster second half from the resurgent third year back. No, its not a misprint, and you may want to hold off on scheduling that annual appointment with your optometrist (at least for the moment). These aren't your grandfather's Saints. They're not just a high-scoring side-show that finds a way to manufacture a loss- these Saints are catching up to the curve knocking it out of the park.
Gregg Williams has the defense improving week to week and playing at a high caliber. The stingy Saints "D" only allowed 243 yards from scrimmage, and held the Bills' All-Pro wide receiver Terrell Owens without a catch for the first time in 185 games-ending the third longest streak in NFL history. After' forcing Buffalo to punt on their first possession, the Saints gave up what would be the Bills' only points of the game, on of all things, a fake field goal that ended in a touchdown reception for defensive end Ryan Denny.
Gimmicks notwithstanding, the Saints "D" was stifling. They sacked Trent Edwards four times and forced two turnovers-the third time in as many games the "Black and Gold" has come up with two or more.
As far as for individual performances, Thomas reminded us what all the off-season fuss was about. With Brees having a pedestrian outing, well short of the pregame billing, and leading rusher Mike Bell still sidelined with a knee injury, Thomas literally ran away with the game. After not carrying the ball at all the first two games of the season, or for that matter the first two quarters Sunday, Thomas shredded the Bills defense for a career high 126 yards on just 14 carries and scored two game sealing touchdowns.
Thomas' 9 yards a carry couldn't have come at a better time. When the Saints "high-flying offense" was grounded by Buffalos' defense, Thomas provided the leg work to get the job done. In a " what have you done for me lately" league, Thomas was quickly becoming the forgotten man in the Saints' offense. But after his performance Sunday, I don't think anyone will be forgetting him anytime soon-especially not the Buffalo Bills.
Photograph by Jonathan Bachman
Holy Jumping Jehoshaphats the Saints have started their season off well, don't you think? Regardless of what you could say about the talent level or health of the three teams the Saints have beaten thus far, you cannot argue that they haven't put forth convincingly dominate performances in every game. The Saints have the league's best offense (no surprise here) thanks to the league's (here's the shocker) second-best rushing game. The defense is also playing even better than hoped, or at least good enough to be the NFC's best defense.
But enough big picture, let's get to that snap judgment about yesterday's game:
The first poster for Bad Lieutenant: Port of Call New Orleans has surfaced. From the tight focus on Nic Cage's enormous gun (which seems to impress/intrigue Eva Mendes) to his showing-off of the liner of his fly jacket, to the skyline of a city that doesn't seem to be New Orleans, it's really ... something. What do you think?
Although two murders took place on Scott Street in the Mid-City area over the weekend, a neighborhood representative says the homicides are not a sign of rising crime, but rather are isolated incidents stemming from domestic disputes. Virginia Blanque, a board member of the advisory council to the Mid-City Neighborhood Organization who lives close to where the two homicides took place, says foot traffic has increased in the neighborhood and homeowners seem to have a more relaxed attitude.
We have people who walk all over here, Blanque says. As a matter of fact, I had a sense things were getting better.
As a sign of this improvement, Blanque points out the welcoming sight of furniture, plants and people on the porches of houses throughout Mid-City. If neighbors were more anxious and always on the lookout for crime, Blanque reasons, the area would have a more shuttered appearance than it does now.
Im seeing more accoutrements of comfort, rather than manifestations of fear, Blanque says.
The New Orleans Police Department is on the lookout for Daniel T. Marshall, a 23-year-old New Orleans man who is wanted in connection with the Friday night murder of 24-year-old Ronald Hodges that took place in the 400 block of South Scott Street. Leonard Nellum, 32, was arrested yesterday and booked with second-degree murder after allegedly killing his mother with a piece of cement outside of a house on the 100 block of North Scott Street.
Anthony Bean Theater has extended the run of August Wilson's The Piano Lesson (reviewed in Gambit this week). In Wilson's cycle of plays chronicling African-American life in the 20th century, The Piano Lesson is fourth in the sequence and deals with the legacy of slavery. Family members differ over breaking with the past or preserving a link to their history, in this case a piano that was once traded for two of their relatives. The instrument's inner panels are carved with the likenesses of past ancestors. But selling it might provide the money to invest in a venture that could support the family into future generations. Wilson won his second Pulitzer Prize for the play. The final performance is at 3 p.m. Sat., Oct. 3 at Anthony Bean Community Theater, 1333 S. Carrollton Ave., 862-7529).
It's the fall Arts & Entertainment edition of Gambit, which gave us an excuse to put KISS, Nicolas Cage and a ballet dancer on the cover. Seriously, there are pages of info on upcoming concerts, plays, exhibits, movies, sporting events, arena shows and other divertissements to help you mark your calendar for the next few months.
With Karen Carter Peterson declining to run for mayor, a lot of people this week were wondering if anyone was interested in running City Hall. One man is -- and in an essay, James Carville explains why he would be running for New Orleans mayor ... if he could.
Clancy DuBos does the political algebra behind the City Council pay-raise question -- and with Councilmember Jackie Clarkson declaring on Friday (after 5 pm) that she would not be supporting the raise, the algebra approaches calculus ...
In his latest "Suspect Device" cartoon, Greg Peters analyzes the mayoral race terror threat chart ...
Alex Woodward takes a look at a local school that's going solar. Elsewhere in our monthly Green Matters section, there's word of a carbon-neutral all-lesbian eco-cruise setting sail from New Orleans ....
This fall brings a slew of up-and-coming indie rock acts to town. Noah Bonaparte Pais talks to the talent bookers at some local clubs, and finds the increased competition means good things for concertgoers.
... and restaurant dude Ian McNulty finds formidable Vietnamese cuisine in Metairie.
That's it. And while you're waiting for the new Gambit, we highly recommend checking out last night's edition of Informed Sources on WYES-TV, with panelists Errol Laborde, Travers Mackel, John Hill and Ethan Brown. It gets good when the conversation turns to this week's U.S. Department of Justice report about conditions at the O.P.P.
See you on the newsstand.
Would you apply for a full-time job that often requires you to work six or even seven days a week and hasnt gotten a pay raise in 24 years and probably wont get one for at least another four?
Heres a clip from Thursdays YMO sponsored Peace Walk thru Central City just a taste to tie you over till Sundays parade (see route and time below): Six bands, 5000+ parade-goers, and nine divisions of scores of Black men wearing proper suits, sashes, fans and dress shoes, dancing for four hours atop the hot, feet-ravaging busted streets of New Orleans like it's not a problem. THIS is why New Orleans didn't die, aint never gonna die. Mufkrz here are HARD CORE!
God's speed, Rodrigue
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