Monday, April 16, 2018

'Books for Brews' prison book drive returns April 21

Posted By on Mon, Apr 16, 2018 at 2:40 PM


One Book One New Orleans and Louisiana Books 2 Prisoners will host a "Books for Brews" book drive at Second Line Brewing this Saturday.

At the event, attendees can receive free beer tokens in exchange for donations of books to be sent to people who are incarcerated. The organizing groups will collect a few specific types of books, including new or gently used paperback dictionaries, composition notebooks (the kind without a spiral binding), and softcover trade or how-to manuals on subjects such as carpentry or needlework.

Other types of books are not needed at this time.

One Book One New Orleans also is looking for a couple of volunteers to help box and transport the books after the event. If you can't make it, but want to lend a hand, Louisiana Books 2 Prisoners has an Amazon list to purchase books for donation (tragically, no free beer is involved).

The book drive takes place from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. April 21. Admission is free.

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Friday, April 6, 2018

'This isn't a resting point, it's a launch pad' — an interview with WWL-TV's Sheba Turk on the release of her new book

Posted By on Fri, Apr 6, 2018 at 9:46 AM

WWL-TV Anchor Sheba Turk's new book was published by Pelican Publishing March 27. - PHOTO BY JOSH DETIEGE
  • Photo by Josh Detiege
  • WWL-TV Anchor Sheba Turk's new book was published by Pelican Publishing March 27.

In March, WWL-TV anchor Sheba Turk and Pelican Publishing released Turk’s book Off Air: My Journey to the Anchor Desk, about growing up in New Orleans in a family of modest means, striking out on her own in New York City for college (only to have to return home when she no longer could afford to attend school there), and her meteoric rise from co-producer to reporter to traffic anchor to morning show anchor at WWL in just two years.

Turk credits her success to her loving, albeit flawed parents, a positive attitude and an abundance of strong female role models, including her mom and her mentors Kim Bondy, a former program producer and now-strategist and consultant, and Soledad O’Brien, former CNN anchor and now-CEO of Starfish Media Group. O'Brien also composed the book's foreword.

Turk celebrates the book’s premiere at a signing 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday, April 8 at Terrance Osborne Gallery (3029 Magazine St.). Books are available for purchase at the event, or online at www.ShebaTurk.com. She took a few minutes to talk with Gambit about her journey so far, her book and what’s next.

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Monday, March 26, 2018

Supercard of Honor: chatting with wrestler Cody 'The American Nightmare' Rhodes

Posted By on Mon, Mar 26, 2018 at 5:23 PM

Back at WrestleMania 30 in 2014, the talented Cody Rhodes, a hard-working wrestler with a magic touch for finding ways to connect with the audience, was relegated to a minor role in an opening multi-man match. Four years later, he's returning to New Orleans a proven main-eventer, and on Saturday, April 7 at Ring of Honor's Supercard of Honor, he'll face Kenny Omega in a dream match pro-wrestling fandom is buzzing about.

Cody (left) and Kenny Omega (right) will face off April 7 at "Supercard of Honor" - RING OF HONOR
  • Cody (left) and Kenny Omega (right) will face off April 7 at "Supercard of Honor"

After almost a decade at WWE, Cody left in 2016 to make a living as an independent wrestler. He's not the first to try, nor the first to succeed, but as a longtime fan it's been gratifying to watch Cody's journey, first out from under the shadow of his legendary father (bleach-blonde Hall-of-Famer Dusty Rhodes, The American Dream) and then beyond the gates of WWE as an international independent star.

Cody's always had charisma. Years ago, his absurdly perfect good looks were the basis of an ultra-vain "male beauty" persona that remains dear to the hearts of many (and helped get my then-partner interested in watching wrestling). It was Cody who finally reintroduced WWE's iconic white-leather Intercontinental Title belt, and he proved capable of making all kinds of unlikely material work, including getting fans excited about something as seemingly basic as him growing a mustache.

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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Fashion show, comedy night highlight reproductive rights

Posted By on Thu, Mar 22, 2018 at 3:38 PM


As new abortion restrictions with tentative support from the governor wind through the Louisiana Legislature and the federal government moves to strengthen health care providers' conscience objection protections, two local groups have planned fundraisers spotlighting abortion rights and emergency contraception programs.

On March 31, New Orleans Abortion Fund (NOAF) hosts its inaugural Say Yes to the Vest benefit, in which local designers present creative takes on the vests worn by abortion clinic escorts. (Tagline: "Mesh has made a comeback.") Camille Roane of the Black Girl Giggles comedy collective hosts, and there's storytelling and a silent auction.

Tickets, $20, include drinks and snacks and fund NOAF's assistance programs for women who want an abortion but cannot afford one. The event begins at 7 p.m. at New Orleans Art Center.

On April 2, Louisiana Foundation Against Sexual Assault (LaFASA) hosts a comedy and burlesque night at Sidney's Saloon to raise money for emergency contraception (such as Plan B) for survivors of sexual assault — especially those who are denied such medications by health care providers.

Performers include Laura Sanders, Geneva Joy Hughes, Mary-Devon Dupuy, Cacophany, Jade Bronte, High Profile, Remy Dee and others. There's also a food pop-up by La Monita, and Will Jackson DJs following the show. Tickets are $10 and the event begins at 8 p.m. at Sidney's Saloon.

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Friday, March 2, 2018

Books roundup: Five literary events in New Orleans in March

Posted By on Fri, Mar 2, 2018 at 12:09 PM


It's March: when spring returns, clocks do whatever it is they do when daylight saving time begins and we break out the shorts and flip-flops we'll all be wearing for the next eight months.

Among the city's densely populated fooding-and-festing spring calendar, there are a few worthwhile literary events to attend this month. Here's a short list of picks.

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Monday, February 19, 2018

Pop-Up Magazine, 'live magazine' and storytelling show, is in New Orleans Feb. 23

Posted By on Mon, Feb 19, 2018 at 2:59 PM


What if reading a magazine were more like watching a play — i.e., you could share it with a roomful of people? That's more or less the premise behind Pop-Up Magazine, which brings its winter tour to New Orleans Feb. 23.

The show, which bills itself as a "live magazine," adapts a variety of stories from writers, journalists and artists, adding multimedia elements and incorporating an orchestral score to create 3- to 12-minute storytelling pieces. The resulting performance is in a medium that is less curl-up-with-a-book night in and more collective outing, senior story producer Anita Badejo says.

"If you read an article or you listen to a podcast, that tends to be a very solitary experience," she says. "[With our show], people are experiencing it together, in a room ... as part of kind of a community."

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Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Books roundup: Five literary events in New Orleans in February

Posted By on Wed, Feb 7, 2018 at 1:22 PM


We know, we know — it's not exactly the right time for this post. But as Carnival madness ratchets up to 11 with big night parades Wednesday evening, recall that there will be a time when you return to your regular life, or at least whatever passes for regular life in New Orleans.

Assuming that life includes good books, here are some literary events to check out this month.

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NOMA screens 'Fashion on Film' series to accompany fashion exhibit

Posted By on Wed, Feb 7, 2018 at 10:38 AM

"A Queen Within: Adorned Archetypes" opens Feb. 21. - OMAR VICTOR DIOP / COURTESY MAGNIN-A GALLERY
  • "A Queen Within: Adorned Archetypes" opens Feb. 21.

New Orleans Museum of Art will screen six documentaries about the fashion industry this spring in conjunction with "A Queen Within: Adorned Archetypes," its first-ever fashion exhibit which opens Feb. 21.

The film series kicks off March 2 with The Legacy of Alexander McQueen, which is a profile of the avant-garde designer whose 2010 suicide rocked the fashion world. McQueen's work figures prominently in "A Queen Within: Adorned Archetypes."

There also is a documentary about the making of Vogue's annual tomelike September issue, which sets the tone for fashion coverage for the coming year, and a profile of shoe designer and Sex and the City-era household name Manolo Blahnik.

Here's the complete schedule, which screen at the museum's campus in City Park.

March 2: The Legacy of Alexander McQueen at 6:30 p.m.

March 3: Bangalogia: The Science of Style and Sapeurs: The Men Inside the Suits at 2 p.m.

April 7: Manolo: The Boy Who Made Shoes for Lizards at 2 p.m.

April 20: The First Monday in May at 7 p.m.

May 18: The September Issue at 9 p.m. 

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Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Art exhibit highlights costumes of women, people of color and historically marginalized New Orleans groups

Posted By on Wed, Jan 31, 2018 at 12:09 PM


An exhibit opening at Antenna Feb. 2 celebrates costuming among historically marginalized groups in New Orleans, including women, LGBT people and people of color.

"King for a Day" is curated by Zibby Jahns and Lindsey Phillips and includes four installations representing costumes that are worn by various New Orleans communities, such as Baby Doll marching groups, Lords of Leather and punk and DIY groups. The costumes are displayed among fabrics and materials artisans and crafters commonly incorporate in those garments.

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Monday, January 22, 2018

George Saunders, short story master and Lincoln in the Bardo author, is in New Orleans Feb. 20

Posted By on Mon, Jan 22, 2018 at 1:12 PM

George Saunders, whose short stories crystallize his signature blend of the literary, the eerie and the profound, will speak in New Orleans Feb. 20.

The author will discuss his recent novel, Lincoln in the Bardo. The book, a phantasmagoric reimagining of what happened after the death of Abraham Lincoln's young son, is narrated almost entirely by the ghostly inhabitants of a strange purgatory. It was lauded by numerous publications as one of 2017's most important releases and won the Man Booker Prize.

If you haven't used up all your free New Yorker articles yet this month, you can try Saunders' work on for size with "The Semplica-Girl Diaries," which somehow manages to be an electrifying piece of short fiction that is also about consumerism, human trafficking, economic inequality, adult compromises, kids' morality and the evolving English language. It was collected in 2013's Tenth of December, which was a finalist for the National Book Award that year.

Garden District Book Shop hosts the reading at the New Orleans Advocate office (840 St. Charles Ave.) at 7 p.m. Feb. 20. Tickets are $10, which includes a $5 coupon for a book sold at the event.

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