Since New Orleans businessman John Georges bought The Advocate just a week ago, things have been moving quickly. Georges installed former T-P managing editors Peter Kovacs and Dan Shea as editor and general manager, and there was word that The Advocate's Baronne Street offices were adding several additional parking spaces immediately. It was a poorly kept secret that the paper had been talking to T-P city editor Gordon Russell, and only a slightly better kept secret that The Advocate was also interested in Martha Carr, a veteran of the city desk known as a meticulous editor.
"If Gordon and Martha go," a city reporter told Gambit Saturday night, "we all go."
And that's what seems to be happening. This morning Kovacs announced that Russell would be joining the New Orleans Advocate (not the New Orleans bureau of The Advocate, but "the New Orleans Advocate", a change in terminology). Also leaving the T-P: city reporters Claire Galofaro and Andrew Vanacore. (Former T-P staffer Sara Pagones, who had been helming the New Orleans bureau since it launched last fall, will now be St. Tammany bureau chief.) Russell becomes The Advocate's managing editor for investigations, while Carr will be the New Orleans paper's managing editor.
Kovacs told Gambit this morning that he didn't have a precise date for when their bylines might start appearing in The Advocate. "I think our goal is in the very near future," he said. "Things are moving very quickly and I would hope we would start seeing them in the next week or so. It’s a ramp-up process." Beyond that, he had little to say when asked about a redesign of the paper (rumored to be scheduled for late summer) and a possible web redesign. "We have lots of plans to improve the paper," Kovacs said. "I’m not going into which they are and when they’re coming."
Hey New Orleans — here's a dinner deal for you!
First you pay $35, then you bring your own food, utensils and your own goddam table.
You don't know where you're going, but you must wear white from head to toe. Oh, and there's a three-step process for application and a waiting list ("Best of luck in your registration!"), because, you know, the experience of paying a stranger for the privilege of staging your own dinner party is not just for everyone, darling.
And you can't cancel. Period.
The concept is called "Le Diner en Blanc," it's been done in other cities around the world, and it's coming to New Orleans this month, as described by Doug MacCash in a Times-Pic article this morning (hat tip: Food Goddess Lorin Gaudin). MacCash describes it as "an international phenomenon with thousands of adventure seekers finding their way to clandestine clone events," and I'm certainly with him on the clone part.
Seats are allotted on-site in a very specific manner.
In order to participate, one must be invited by a participant from the previous year or get on the official website's waiting list.
Once confirmed, the presence of each guest thus becomes mandatory, regardless of weather conditions, as the event is held regardless of weather conditions.
Huh? You want me to pay you to bring my own dinner and my appearance is mandatory? And no weather cancellations, no matter what? We cancel Mardi Gras parades that have been in the works for a year if the weather is going to be dangerous — your dinner party is more important than those?
Folk singer Michelle Shocked, whose anti-gay comments at a San Francisco concert last Sunday night made worldwide headlines after fans walked out and the venue pulled the plug on her mic, will appear on an Internet radio show tomorrow morning to discuss the incident.
Shocked, a former New Orleans resident who performed at the 2011 Jazz & Heritage Festival and local venues around town (most recently a gig at Chickie Wah Wah in November), had much of her upcoming tour canceled after her remarks, which reportedly included her belief that the overturn of California's Proposition 8 (which put a ban on same-sex marriage in the state Constitution) would result in the return of Jesus Christ. (Time reported the story with the headline "Singer Who Everyone Thought Was a Lesbian Spews Anti-Gay Hate at Concert.")
Shocked, now a self-described fundamentalist Christian, has taken to Twitter to explain, somewhat, that her remarks were taken out of context and misquoted. "Am neither against a woman's right to choose nor gay marriage. Am a fundamentalist tho," she explained. "Most don't even know what my 'views on Gays' are. What is reported to be my views on Gays isn't," she added, as well as "Just my usual troublemaking, at the expense of dear friends who trust me, even when I appear to be gay-bashing."
She is scheduled to appear on The Nicole Sander Show on RadioOrNot.com Thursday morning at 10 a.m., where she'll certainly be asked about exchanges like this:
The crowd had come, presumably, to hear songs like “Come a Long Way” and “On the Greener Side,” which got airplay on MTV back in the day. (“Greener Side” was even up for a VMA against Madonna’s “Vogue.”)
Instead they were treated to a tirade that allegedly included Shocked announcing “God hates fags.”
Matt Penfield, who was live-tweeting the show from onstage called her rant, delivered during her second set, “totally sincere [and] super anti-gay and hateful.”
We’re still trying to get the full text of her speech, but apparently she told fans “you can go on twitter and say Michelle Shocked said ‘God hates fags.’”
Another Twitter user posted that Shocked “said she lives in fear that the world will be destroyed if gays are allowed to marry.”
Gov. Bobby Jindal's performance at Saturday night's Gridiron Club Dinner in Washington, D.C. went over well — at least with President Barack Obama, who praised Jindal's material and delivery at the
logrolling annual chance for politicians and the D.C. press corps to share a laugh:
"I have to say, I thought Bobby (Jindal) was incredibly funny this evening. I thought he was terrific," Obama said last night at the high-profile Gridiron Dinner, in his remarks after Jindal made a highly impressive speech full of fun and jokes, wiping out his 2009 lacklustre speech which was in response to the first State of the Union Address by Obama.
Jindal's entire speech has been posted online by The Washington Post. Here's one for Louisianans:
[N]ow some people have asked me if I intend to run for President in 2016?
And the answer is that I have no plans to run. I’ve made that clear, over and over again…in Iowa…in New Hampshire…and in South Carolina.
And for those who want a local take on politicos and press rubbing elbows, tickets are now on sale for the Press Club of New Orleans' annual Gridiron Dinner, which takes place March 19 at Walk-On's. The headliner is New Orleans City Council president Stacy Head; tickets are $40 and are available here.
More Jindal under the cut. (Lots of Indian jokes!)
Last night I saw a bloated vessel filled with crap dock in Mobile, Ala. — but enough about CNN. The story, of course, was the arrival of the Carnival cruise ship Triumph, which had an engine failure that stranded it in the Gulf of Mexico and turned it into the Good Ship Lollipoop for a few days.
But for CNN's Martin Savidge, the lack of communication aboard the ship was equivalent to the lack of communication on the ground in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina and the levee failures ...
SAVIDGE: blah blah blah Hurricane Katrina blah blah I assume it's something very similar.
PASSENGER: Yeah, but let's put that in perspective. I mean, Katrina was a major devastation. We're on a friggin' cruise ship, and we're just havin' a good time, so ... Two different things. Two different things.
CNN has mostly moved on to the Russian meteor story, but if you still want tales from the S.S. Hurricane Katrina, CNN.com still offers "Video: 'Everyone will need psychological help'", "Parisa Safarzadeh shares her account of the hellish trip on the Carnival Triumph" and the popular "Passenger video: Sewage on walls."
UPDATE: It seems that one of the charter buses bringing passengers from Mobile to New Orleans broke down on I-10, and those on board had to wait nearly an hour for a replacement bus, which must have been like Superstorm Sandy.
Orleans Avenue/Canal Street neutral ground report, Friday (yesterday's report is here).
Spray paint: check
Netting around front lawns: ubiquitous
Trash cans blocking off parking: everywhere
Stakes, tape and string: oh, mais oui
Port-o-lets: take your pick
Tents 'n' chairs 'n' stuff: boy howdy
Guy with a rattail buying smokes at Walgreens: we've got that covered
Sketchy carny-style food trucks selling funnel cakes: not yet
We'll start on Canal Street, just off Carrollton:
More under the jump!
Orleans Avenue neutral ground report, Thursday (yesterday's report is here).
Many of the "good spaces" have already been claimed, Endymiongoers:
Spray paint: check
Netting around front lawns: check
Trash cans blocking off parking: check
Stakes, tape and string: check
People: a few
Furniture: not yet
Let's go to the photos:
"Maomi & Friends" (?) have a sweet corner view.
Can't see on iPhone FYI.
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