Friday, April 30, 2010


New Orleans, LA
Jazz Fest 2010

As you can see, the fest is as much about the food as it is the music...






Thursday, April 29, 2010

Eye Candy

New Orleans, LA
Jazz Fest 2010


I remember way back when Big Sam used to own the Funky Butt over on Rampart.  I used to go in there to hear him and his Funky Nation play and wonder why this guy wasn't playing at Jazz Fest, or all over the country for that matter.  It was the best kept secret in the city.  This was back when Big Sam was really BIG Sam, before he lost a bunch of weight and started going to the gym all the time.  He was always one of the most charismatic performers New Orleans had ever seen.  Now he's all buff, and fine as a motherfucker:




The secret's out, too.  He's all over the place now, drawing a huge crowd at the fest last week.  Last time I saw him in San Francisco, the Boom Boom Room had people spilling out the door.  I saw him at d.b.a. not too long ago.  I was going to say hello on the break, but I realized I was going to need a machete to hack through the tangle of shrieking females clinging to his feet.

Hmm.  Maybe some other time.

Check them out here.  See if you can make it to their next show.  Bring your dancing shoes, and lots of energy.  Have fun!

Quite a ride...

Cooper Landing, Alaska
August, 2008


Have I mentioned how much I miss Alaska?  How much I'm dying, aching, itching, literally chomping at the bit to get there?

Yeah.  I'm sure I've mentioned it.  Once or twice.  I know of more than one person who's sick of hearing about it.

Last time (actually, the only time) I was in Cooper Landing was kind of funny.  The lady who owned the B&B that I stayed at in Seward said there was a guy up there who had horses, and I should look him up if I wanted to ride.  So a few days later as I was leaving Homer, I gave him a call.  It went something like this:

Dude: "Oh yeah, I've got horses.  When do you want to ride?"

Me: "Uhh, whenever.  Tomorrow?"

Dude: "OK, yeah.  Can you come in the morning, at like eleven?"

Me: "Sure.  I'll drive up there tonight.  Where should I stay?"

Dude: "There's a place up the road, another one down the street.  I rent rooms here at the ranch, too."

So basically I said oh great, I'll just get a room from you, I'll be there in about four or five hours.  He said fine, someone should be there, give me your number just in case.  A couple of hours later, I get a phone call:

Dude: "Hey, I've got to go up to Anchorage tonight, be back in the morning.  Just come on over here to my place, the house is all yours, I'll leave the back door unlocked.  You can take the side room, the one with the purple bedspread.  Help yourself to anything you'd like, the fridge is fully stocked for pretty much whatever you need."

Are you fucking kidding me?  Dude.  You don't even fucking know me.

Yeah, so I'm a City Girl.  Whatever.  It blew my mind that somebody who DIDN'T EVEN KNOW ME was willing to leave their home unlocked for me to wander into and sleep in.  Plus he left a kitchen full of bacon, eggs, and reindeer sausage for breakfast?

I'm glad he did.  It was a full day, and a hard ride...


The best was when he asked me to help him hook up his new television the next afternoon.  That was the whole reason he'd driven up to Anchorage the night before, was to buy a big new, fancy television for the living room.  Only problem was, he didn't know how to hook the fucking thing up.  You're asking me?

Oh honey.  You picked the wrong girl.

I did my best.  Which wasn't very good.  Poor darlin'.  He was still on the phone with customer service as I pulled away.  I'll have to pay him a visit if (when) I get up there this summer.  See if he ever got off hold, at least...


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Sounds about right

New Orleans, LA
Mardi Gras 2008


Poor Britney.

Monday, April 26, 2010


New Orleans, LA
Jazz Fest 2010

Festival favorites:





Sunday, April 25, 2010

Shadow Shot Sunday

New Orleans, LA
City Park




Johnny Sketch and the Dirty Notes

New Orleans, LA
Jazz Fest 2010 greatest hits

These guys are pretty fucking awesome.  That's Johnny Sketch, down below.  He's pretty bad ass.  I mean, how many guitar players out there bust out an electric cello every other song?


This is Dave.  He lived in one of the apartments out back for a while at the Compound.  Dave's lazy ass was always hanging out in the pool.  Right next to MY lazy ass.  Some days the whole band would hang out in the pool.  The Compound usually needed some time to recover from those days.


The rest of the Dirty Notes are looking good:



They're sounding good too.  Horn section's as strong as ever.  Visit their website here and check their 'sketchule'.  If you're lucky, they will be coming to a city near you sometime in the near future.  Go.  You won't regret it.  Trust me on this sort of thing.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Two asses

Marin County Fair
Fourth of July, 2006
San Rafael, CA

The minute I took it, I knew that was the perfect title for this picture:


Oh, calm down.  It's just a joke.  I would never insult an innocent donkey like that...

Seriously though, I miss that dude.  His parents are going to buy my car from me when I move to NY, which is one less thing I have to worry about now.  Love when family takes care of things for you.

He's living in Oregon now, in the mountains, on a farm.  Waking up at the crack of dawn to feed the animals and, uh, tend the farm, I guess.  Crazy how things can change.  It's a far cry from managing the French Quarter Bar at the Ritz-Carlton, I'll tell you that...

Much better

I started a new job this week.  Today was my third day.  It's great so far.  It's a lot nicer to see signs like this in the kitchen...

                  opposed to signs like this.  At least the sign at this place hints of professionalism.  Although let's face it.  There's a reason they put the sign up in the first place.  But the money's good, it's easy, and the food is awesome so I'm happy.  I got the job in typical New Orleans fashion.  I called a friend and said, "Does the place you're working at still need help?"

"Yeah!" she said. "Actually, can you come in and talk to them about it tonight?  Please?"

An even funnier side note: one of the owners used to be a regular at a dive bar I worked at up the street like ten years ago.  He was the sous chef at my favorite restaurant in town, which is half a block away from the bar.  I remember that he became the executive chef sometime after I stopped working in the neighborhood.  Now it seems he's gone into business with the owners and opened the place I'm at now.  I had no idea until I started working there.  Very cool.  I am reminded once again how very small this city really is.  Amazing how it still manages to produce such an over-abundance of great food and music.  How is that possible, with so few people?

Anyway, he'd better be good to me, or I'll show everyone those pictures I have from Mardi Gras 2002...

Friday, April 23, 2010

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Moose tongue

Salty Dawg Saloon
Homer, Alaska

It's calling my name.


  I'd really like to get up there at some point this summer.  Last time I was in the Salty Dawg, I met this guy:


He'd been moose hunting that morning, successfully it appeared.  He was saving the tongue for a friend.  A very lucky friend, I might add.  I'd love to have a friend who would bring me fresh moose parts for dinner from time to time.

Field trip

Today seemed like a good day to trade the sounds of the city for the sounds of the swamp.  So I drove across the river and headed down to Barataria Preserve, which is a great place to spend an afternoon wandering around.




I found this up in a tree.  I have no idea what it is.  I'll bet GG would know.  She knows all about bird stuff.  She would probably pull out one of those humongous bird books she has stashed all over the house and find it in about a minute.


Barataria Preserve is part of Jean Lafitte National Park, which consists of six different park sites spread out around south Louisiana.  Worth a visit if you're in the area.   Jean Lafitte National Park


Sunday, April 18, 2010

Shadow Shot Sunday

New Orleans, LA
Audubon Park




first world trash

Remember last week I was telling you about my friend Jenelle and how she's such genius and all that?  If not, you can refresh your memory here.

There's something I forgot to mention.  After she moved to NY, Jenelle started a company called first world trash, where she designs handbags and other cool stuff from recycled materials.  Notes from her website:

first world trash

Products are individually handmade almost entirely from recycled materials. Our bags, created from used seatbelts and vinyl billboards, are designed for durability in an urban environment.
remade in america
Our bags are born in the junkyards of America, where we salvage seatbelts from old cars and rescue billboards before they are thrown into landfills. All materials are then deep cleaned, cut and polished in preparation for stitching. Each bag is individually designed and crafted by first world trash owner and designer, Jenelle Malbrough, in her apartment, in Queens, NY. All bags are tear proof, water resistant and built to last.    

You can check out what she's got to offer here.  Told you that girl's a genius.

Saturday, April 17, 2010


New Orleans, LA
French Quarter Fest 2010






Of course, we can't forget...


Things I miss about San Francisco

Lots of trouble.  Good times.  Late nights, early mornings.  It's all the same, isn't it?

Friday, April 16, 2010

Uhh, go Gigantes?

Sorry I'm late.

I meant to acknowledge opening day for the San Francisco Giants last week, because if I were still living out there, that would have been a huge deal for me.  At least work-wise.  To be honest, I really don't care about baseball.  Are they doing well?  I think they are.  Even when I worked right there, literally next to the stadium, I was only vaguely aware of the team.  The only reason I'm even aware that opening day was last Friday is because I have a 2010 Giants schedule on my refrigerator.  Why, you ask?  Because someone sent me one in the mail.  Fucker.

I did think about my friends at the ballpark last week, and I missed them.  I was busy working an opening day of a different kind last Friday.  It was the first day of French Quarter fest, really a warm-up for the upcoming Jazz Fest season.  Greedy, insatiable, howling, thankless crowds for hours on end...

Actually, maybe it wasn't really all that different from opening day at the ballpark.

Hope I can get out to San Francisco sometime.  Looking forward to checking out the view from one of these bar stools next time I'm in town.

The neighbors

New Orleans, LA
Mardi Gras 2008



They live up the street.  They're out there pushing the bed around with a different theme every year.  This one from a couple of years ago might be my favorite so far.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Seward, Alaska
July 2009


Let's make a deal

I've already explained a little bit about jazz funerals to you here.  So this is my plan:

Let's start out at St. Augustine, my favorite Sunday morning hot spot.  We'll wander our way down to the Quarter, parade through Jackson Square, end up somewhere on Frenchmen Street.  Dancing will rule the day, and I think a costume party would be in order.  There should be umbrellas twirling, white handkerchiefs waving.  For fuck's sake, don't wear black.  As I said, think costume.  Think colorful.  I want you pie-rootin' your ass up and down the street decked out in all your finery, just like it was Mardi Gras morning.  Blue skies, the sun will be shining and the band will be playing...

Yeah you right!