Thursday, July 31, 2008

I'm back from Boca.

I survived bad hotel kosher food, too.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Girl Sailor

That's me - at least for today. I'm sitting in the Tampa airport, waiting for my connection to Ft. Lauderdale.

I miss D. and the monster collies already...but I'm excited to see Brookie!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Bobby Speaks.

This is a fabulous distraction from the oil fumes coating the city and its environs at the moment...



Yet another distraction? Saints training camp begins today. And Colston is there!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Help me, Oprah! Help me, Tom Cruise!

Please Lord, let me fit into my bridesmaid dress this Saturday.

I faithfully promise to limit my chocolate and red wine consumption, and to only stare longingly at the po'boys D. brings home from Crabby Jack's.

I promise to hit the elliptical we just bought more often and to even use the dust-gathering exercise ball that sits forlornly in our living room.

I will eat healthy things, ignoring the bounty of fried goodness that surrounds me (like the gravy cheese fries at Parasol's).

I will ignore the 902840239482309482309 degree heat and 4,000% humidity outside and walk the collies daily.

I will even Jazzercise if it means I will not look like a Jersey girl stuffed into a bright red organza dress like a piece of andouille.

Your most humble servant,

Cait the Starved

The Delachaise Blog

The Delachaise Neighborhood Association has an official blog, gorgeously designed by the lovely NOLABlossom.

Check it out - between the two of us, we'll keep the neighborhood blights in line. ;)

http://delachaiseneighborhood.blogspot.com/

Chris and Rebecca

Dear Chris and Rebecca,

I am so thrilled for you - D. and I are honored to be part of your wedding, and we're happy that - after 8 years of dating - you're now officially in a relationship.



Some advice:

-Rebecca, let Chris keep his Britney Spears poster (in the closet, where it belongs.)
-Chris, Rebecca's probably right. About most everything. ::wry grin::
-Rebecca, you need a Saints jersey. Drew Brees, perhaps?
-Chris, a Jaguars jersey (say...Greg Jones?) wouldn't hurt.
-Make sure to laugh a lot. It helps. For reals.
-Always remember why you love one another, and chose to commit your lives to one another.
-Keep some popcorn on hand for when friends come to visit and you decide to fake-fight.
-Chris, Italian leather shoes ARE a necessary expenditure.
-Rebecca, keep some Xanax around the house. It could prove useful during football season.
-It's okay to have a crush on Buster Posey. That goes for both of you. Get your minds out of the gutter!
-Let the little stuff slide. Always talk it out.
-Most importantly, there's no contest. The shrimp po'boy will always lose.

Then again, as D. just pointed out, we're not married...so I'm probably full of crap.

I love you both, and we'll be in Jacksonville just after lunch tomorrow.

Until then, here's a little lagniappe for two of my favorite FSU alums:



Geaux Noles, and congratulations to two of the most amazing friends I will ever have - I'm so blessed to have you in my life, and I'm so fortunate to be included in your special day.

Love,
Caiti

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

In a master stroke of the universe laughing at me...

...two of my favorite musical acts EVER will be playing in New Orleans this weekend:

-Alejandro Escovedo
-Old 97's

D. and I will be in Jacksonville, proudly standing up for our friends Chris and Rebecca, who are getting married after nearly 8 years of dating.

We're thrilled for them...but I told Dave this means we'll be listening to an Old 97's/Escovedo mix on our 8-hour drive. :)

But if you're in town this weekend, do go check them out. You won't be disappointed, I promise.

Here's a song we're considering for our wedding ceremony:

Friday, July 11, 2008

Kicking off Friday on a happy note!

D. and I attended last night's Delachaise Neighborhood Association meeting at The Columns, where 3 of the DA candidates spoke...it was very interesting (and by parts illuminating).

More on that later. I still need my coffee.

Towards that end, here's one of my new favorite picks for my road trip playlist, Black Kids. They're quasi-New Radicals, and they're a Florida band (woot!...says this Floridian) - they're actually from Jacksonville. Here's "I'm Not Going to Teach Your Boyfriend."

Lemme know what you think...I think that this band has the motivation and live show chops to have some lasting power, but time will tell, right?

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Happy Soggy Wednesday Time!

On a day as dreary as this (it's pouring out here in Metry), some moody, atmospheric music is ideal to cope, especially when you realize that it's gorgeously sunny uptown at the moment.

Here's "Touch Me I'm Going to Scream Part II," from My Morning Jacket:



Hey, it's less harmful to your health than an NOPD cop armed with a truck...

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Progress? Quoi?

I blearily peeked out from under my duvet this morning at exactly 7:01, when the jackhammers started pummeling the street outside. Jake and Charlie, who have taken to luxuriously stretching out in D.'s absence, jumped up in alarm, and promptly punctured my liver.

Well, yes, that's a bit of a stretch, but the collie maiming was very painful when paired with the siren's call of the construction outside.

Still, half the battle of progress is to accept change in all of its murky good and bad proportions, right?

So here's the latest on the burned out house (AKA "Squatter's Heaven") across the street, thanks to a patient neighbor who sat through the code enforcement hearing yesterday:

Debriefing from yesterday's Adjudication Hearing for 1908 Peniston St: After many hours of waiting for the address to be called, the new owner (Stephen Smith) and myself entered the meeting room for the court proceeding. The Code Enforcement Officer and Mr. Smith were sworn-in (anyone who speaks will be) after which the Officer read off the charges against the owner. The Officer provided photos to the Hearing Administrator who asked the owner if HE was the owner of the property and did he dispute the condition of the property or the charges. He agreed that he was the owner and guilty of all charges. He added that he had just bought the property and intended to demolish but was told that the City was working on their own demo plans and that he should wait to see what the City does."Irrelevant," stated the Administrator; "Are you aware that YOU are currently facing Civil and Criminal charges for your (in)actions?" The owner stated that he understands now! The Administrator ordered another inspection in 30 days to determine if the owner has remedied that which he was charged of; next hearing date is August 13.
But wait, there's more - the house directly across from Squatter's Heaven is a gorgeous Spanish-style house abandoned by its owner, a vice-president at Purdue University. His house is literally falling apart from the inside out, and people have been helping themselves to parts of his former home - in March I literally watched someone back a truck up the drive and steal all of the furniture from the house. Along with a ton of other neighbors, I've called the police many times to report kids from Cohen breaking in to the house or squatters taking up residence...but Mr. Rochon has thus far continued his siege on our neighborhood.

Now I get it if you're just devastated financially after a hurricane, and can't rebuild in the same area. I also understand to a certain extent when people are emotionally devastated by storm waters and high winds - I grew up in the Florida panhandle, and before I moved to NOLA I lived in south Florida (a veritable beacon of hurricane joy). I can relate to being suckered punched by Mother Nature and trying to find a scrap of determination and strength to fix things or to even start over.

But I dislike intensely the head-stuck-in the sand approach of former residents like Mr. Rochon, who instead of taking responsibility for his property, plays the "woe is me" card whenever he is contacted about the safety hazards his home and yard create for our struggling neighborhood. This man is a human Eeyore - instead of seeing the potential for revitalization he sees excuses. We all share responsibility for improving this city and ensuring its sustained future.

Did I mention that this man is a VP at Purdue? Yeah. From another neighbor:

There has been a notification of Violation and Hearing Notice posted at 1905 Peniston (Gilbert Rochon III house), and the hearing is scheduled for July 15, 2008 at 1:15 pm at 1340 Poydras Street Suite 1100. If anyone can attend, please do!!! This property has been a danger to the neighborhood as vagrants and neighborhood teens have used it as a source of income (stealing architectural items and metals), a place to sleep, a place to hang out, and a dumping ground for trash and stolen vehicles (set on fire). Mr. Rochon has been notified on several occasions of the problems that his abandoned property has caused, and he has taken insufficient steps to secure the premises. The rear of the property has been fenced, but the gate is open allowing easy access.


The Delachaise Neighborhood Association will meet Thursday at 7:00 p.m. at The Columns Hotel.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Sigh.

So the city is fixing the drainage and sewer systems on our street, rendering it a place of horror for the next few months. If that means that I won't have to wade out to my car at 6:00 a.m. on a Sunday morning to move it to higher ground during a lightning storm, I'm golden.

The work began early this morning. (And yes, that's why the streets were cut down in our front yard. Grrr. Sort of.)

In semi-related news, the new slacker (erm, owner) of the burned out house diagonally across the street has been cited for not demolishing the home. As of this morning, he has thirty days to demolish it, or Code Enforcement will smite him with the unholy anger of a city struggling to cut through red tape. Here's a photo my neighbor took when a squatter set it on fire in the not-so-distant past:

Yeah. It's like that.

On the upside, I think we have a block party to look forward to the day that moldering monstrosity finally comes down.

Divinity, thy name is Sucre.

So my eldest niece is on the cusp of turning 16 (egads), and frankly, that merits an insanely fabulous cake.

By insanely fabulous, I mean a cake that costs nearly what my wedding cake will. Enter Tariq Hanna, the pastry chef at Sucre, an artisanal sweets shop nestled into Magazine Street.

I called Sucre in a last minute effort to plan an impromptu Sweet 16, since I had just found out she'd be here for the 4th of July. We're not a family of moguls, so spoiled fodder for MTV this girl is not. We surprised her with her cake at Ninja (she looooooooooooves sushi) on Saturday, before surprising her with a Vampire tour of the Quarter. The poor girl just moved to Ft. Polk (near Alexandria) from Alaska, leaving all of her friends behind just before her birthday.

Ouch.

Anyhow, Tariq's efforts proved to be nothing short of phenomenal - delicate chocolate chiffon cake with cookies-and-cream filling, carefully encased in fondant.

Kayla's face was radiant when she saw her cake. I had no clue at the time, but apparently her favorite TV show is "Ace of Cakes" on the Food Network. (So yeah, I was effectively ecstatic to have made her so happy.)

Alrighty then...:)



I'm going to need about 4 hours a day on the elliptical to work off all the junk food the girls and I consumed this weekend - I need to fit into a bridesmaid's dress next weekend. ::hanging my head in mock shame::

Holy heart attack!

D. is off gallivanting around Illinois with some of his family at the moment, while I am recovering from my four days of playing Aunt Cait to my two teenaged nieces.

So this morning D. woke up and checked the front page of NOLA.com, where he promptly saw the headline, "Greater St. Stephen burns down."

He called me, in shock, to relay the news, thinking that the church where we are slated to marry is now smoldering rubble. I immediately freaked out and click on the story, only to find that...






...it's a different church.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Dimitri loves Olga.

A non-NOLA post today...I have PLENTY to say about the street resurfacing project, but it's rainy and I'm missing D. and I require humor.

Ergo, I present the love story of the humble Dimitri, who seeks to woo our fair Olga.

Once upon a time, handsome catch Dimitri became obsessed with a woman named Olga, whom he briefly met on a curb near the San Francisco Marina. Olga gave Dimitri a business card. Here's what followed, as reenacted with great skill on YouTube:



Crushed that he was unable to reach out to the elegant object of his desires, Dimitri valiantly tried again:



Oh, Dimitri. Be still my beating heart...

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Yeah, so that was anticlimactic.

The victim got cold feet and didn't show up for court today.