bschaller at ltoa dot com
Thursday, February 12, 2004

Bloggin' Cajun Style: Day 2

Wow. This place is a serious trip. After a long day of drinking bourbon in airports I was prepared for an early night. I figured in bed by 10:00 at the latest. I could not have been more wrong. My friend Marianne gave me the name and numbers of a couple of her friends to call so I would have someone to hangout with. So I called Dan and we went out at 11:00. Later than I expected, but hell, when in Rome, right? We went to a super pretentious place called The Wine Loft. We were also with two girls and two guys from Ecuador, who by the way spoke Spanish to each other almost the entire night. So here I am with five people I have never met before, in a town I don't know, and at some high class wine bar. Just call me Raoul Duke. I bought this ticket, I might as well take the trip. It ended up not so bad. They were nice people and of course I managed to strike a music conversation. We agreed on Zepplin. Oh, and I was drinking Maker's Mark with a vengeance. I got back to the inn at 2:00 AM, tanked. Waking up at 7:00 AM this morning was rough. I was wicked hungover and maybe still a little drunk. So I take a shower, brush my teeth twice and jumped a trolley for class. Class was not so bad, aside from the massive pain. I learned a lot and I think the product is pretty great. After class I came back to the inn and took a light nap. I mean how does one sleep well in Haunted House? I woke up and was of to a steak house name Dickie Brennen's. I told the inn keeper this and she said not to go. She told me about a place called Charlie's and said that was the best bet. So off I go to Charlie's. What a trip. Imagine the worst VFW or American Legion you have ever been to. Now take that down another couple of notches. That is what this place looked like. The waitstaff was a few days older than God and a little younger that Oprah. There was also no menu. Now with all this I was a little apprehensive. What I got was some of the best food I have had, and arguably the best steak. They even have a step below rare, called "purple". Of course I had to go with this. The steak came out sizzling hot and super good. Never judge a book by it's cover. I am now about to rest before heading to the quarter for some jazz. I'll check in soon. Keep it real until then. B

Wednesday, February 11, 2004

New Orleans...

Hello everyone from New Orleans! That's right, The Congo is broadcasting live from the Big Easy. I arrived here at around three in the afternoon and have been enjoying it ever since. This place is a trip! I am staying in the Garden District, just down the street from the French Quarter at a place called the Castle Inn Bed and Breakfast. My room is great and I love what I have seen of the city. Stay tuned for pictures which are sure to follow. I ate a place this evening called Igor's Garlic Clove. Absolutely amazing food. If you go try the Chicken Anna, wicked good. I am off the enjoy some more of the city. I will write with more updates tomorrow. See y'all soon. B

Tuesday, February 10, 2004

Can I See Your Papers Please...

Last week the Department of Homeland Security conducted sweeps in Portland, Maine looking for illegal immigrants. It arrested 10 people and harassed countless others. After going through a local social outreach shelter they set up shop outside of a Mexican grocery and asked everyone who exited for their citizenship or immigration papers. This caused a panic in the Latino community in Portland and caused many legal Latino citizens not to leave their houses and not even send their children to school. Last Saturday people gathered in the streets to protest these actions. Even the mayor of Portland was appalled. I was pretty sure that one of the benefits of being in this country was that you could move around freely without being asked for your "papers". This is a practice that was common in fascist countries like World War II Germany, Spain, and Italy. Something tells me that this is not making our country inherently safer. I think it is important that we do not tolerate this kind of activity. We must not desensitize ourselves to such acts. Anyone who is in the United States legally should be free from fear of harassment about their legitimacy. This seems to me like just another in a long line of infringements by the Department of Homeland Security. I understand the need to improve safety but if the choice is between safety and freedom, I'll always choose freedom. Patrick Henry said "Give me liberty or give me Death". New Hampshire's state motto is "Live Free or Die!". Have we as Americans become so comfortable and so afraid that we are willing to cash in liberty at the first sign of possible harm? That's not what being American means to me. What do you think? B.

Monday, February 09, 2004

Get Down Charlie Brown...

From our friends at Gothamist, check out "Hey Ya!" Charlie Brown style. This is great! B.

Cry Me a River...

When I look a the list of winners, that is what I want to do. I want to cry. Granted their are a few awards that are well deserved, but on a whole I am pretty sure this show was the nail in the coffin. I have officially lost all faith in humanity, or at least the record industry. I am happy that Outkast won Album of year with Speakerboxxx/The Love Below, but look at their competition: Missy Eliot, hardly the most prolific of song writers and should definitely lose for her association with all things puffy suit; Evanescence, a modern rock band whose breakthrough hit came on the "Daredevil" sound track, please; Justin Timberlake, enough said; and the White Stripes, although good I hardly think the record of the year should sound like it has been recorded on a 4-track in your garage on purpose. In a way I am glad that Outkast won not only because I love the album(s), but because if any of the others had won I would be really pissed. I am happy with best Folk going to Warren Zevon, even though JT beat him for best Pop Vocal, best Bluegrass going to Alison Krauss, and best short video going to Johnny Cash for his cover of Hurt. However I super pissed about things like Sean Paul winning best Reggae Album, Bob Marley and Peter Tosh are rolling over in their graves. The fact that Beyonce won five awards just makes me sick. I thought this was an award show about music not little girls who shake their ass and get pimped out by their fathers. The fact that 50 Cent did not win a goddam thing does however harm my soul. I did not watch but I heard the performances were awful as well. Hard to believe. Oh, wait no it's not. I know what to expect. It is the same every year, but I think it is getting slowly worse. It is just a matter of time before TRL votes are counted for Grammys. I guess that is why we have reverted to being musical tree-top flyers. We must search out music from below the mainstream radar before it gets twisted. In that sad state of affairs that is pop music at least we have something to listen to. What do you all think about the Grammys? B

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Bloggin with Words...

1.21 Gigawatts
Pressure Drop
Pretty Girl in the Corner
BenWa's World
Blogcritics Dot Org
Business Casual
Tequila Mockingbird
Being Homeless
Blog for America
Boing Boing
Emo Kid
Fashionably Late
Indiana Blogs
Information Pollution
Oliver Willis
Rebecca Blood
Wil Wheaton
Little. Yellow. Different.

Bloggin with Pictures...

Photoblogs Dot Org
Human Clock
Chicago Uncommon
Gaping Void
Blue Jake
[daily dose of imagery]
Chromogenic Dot Net
A Visual Notebook

Congo National Gallery

Leroy Neiman
Ralph Steadman
Salvador Dali
Edward Hopper
Dale Chihuly

In Heavy Rotation

Pernice Brothers: Yours, Mine & Ours
Air: Talkie Walkie
The Bens
Johnny Cash: Cash Unearthed
Squarepusher: Big Loada
Gomez: In Our Gun

The Screening Room

Mystic River
Swimming Pool
The Cooler
Big Fish

Summer Reading List

Don DeLillo: White Noise
Tony Morrison: Beloved
Jack Kerouac: On The Road
Sarah Vowell: Partly Cloudy Patriot

Radio! Radio!

NPR (try it, it's good)
Pacifica (God Damn Hippies)
Fresh Air
This American Life
WOXY FM Cincinatti

Fun Places to Go

Google News
Senses of Cinema
Home Star Runner
Film Threat
Okay Player
Group Hug
Exquisite Corpse
Poetry Slam Inc.
The Criterion Collection
The Digital Bits
DVD File
The Onion
80's Cartoons
Fifty Word Fiction

The Way-back Machine
10/12/2003 - 10/19/2003 / 10/19/2003 - 10/26/2003 / 10/26/2003 - 11/02/2003 / 11/02/2003 - 11/09/2003 / 11/09/2003 - 11/16/2003 / 11/16/2003 - 11/23/2003 / 11/30/2003 - 12/07/2003 / 12/07/2003 - 12/14/2003 / 12/14/2003 - 12/21/2003 / 12/21/2003 - 12/28/2003 / 12/28/2003 - 01/04/2004 / 01/04/2004 - 01/11/2004 / 01/11/2004 - 01/18/2004 / 01/18/2004 - 01/25/2004 / 01/25/2004 - 02/01/2004 / 02/01/2004 - 02/08/2004 / 02/08/2004 - 02/15/2004 / 02/15/2004 - 02/22/2004 / 02/22/2004 - 02/29/2004 / 02/29/2004 - 03/07/2004 / 03/07/2004 - 03/14/2004 / 03/14/2004 - 03/21/2004 / 03/21/2004 - 03/28/2004 /

Staff Art Selection...

Edward Hopper: "Rooms By The Sea"

Things To Do...

Open a Record Store
Take up Digital Photography
Take up Kayaking
Buy a Sail Boat
Start a music site better than these guys
Start a Band again...
Start a Leroy Neiman collection
Take up Yoga

My Most Recent BlogCritics Posts

Thirteen: Teen Vice in Inde Film
The Bens: 4 Track EP
Johnny Cash: Cash Unearthed
Don DeLillo's White Noise
Mystic River: A Real Contender
On The Road With Dean and Sal
Learning Modern Classics from Penguins

Congo Tribal Council

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