Tag Archives: New Orleans

My iPod Has Issues – We Almost Went to New Orleans

20 Apr

This weekend, we were supposed to take a field trip to New Orleans. However, the forecast called for a bunch of rain and the threat of flooding. Being in a city that is below sea level with the potential of flooding did not appeal to any of the teachers. For that reason, the field trip was cancelled.

To make up for that, I decided to check the old iPod for songs connected to the city New Orleans and the state of Louisiana. Hopefully, there are enough to make a good list.New Orleans

“City of New Orleans” by Arlo Guthrie

“New Orleans Instrumental No. 1” by R.E.M.

“The Battle of New Orleans” by Johnny Horton

“Saturday Night in Oak Grove, Louisiana” by Tony Joe White

“Lafayette Breakdown” by Cajun Playboys

“New Orleans Ladies” by Louisiana’s LeRoux

“High Sheriff of Calhoun Parrish” by Tony Joe White

“Basin Street Blues” by Louis Prima

“Walking to New Orleans” by Fats Domino

“The House of the Rising Sun” by The Animals

“Sons and Daughters” by The Neville Brothers

“C’est La Vie” by Bob Seger

“Acadie A La Louisiane” by Bruce Daigrepont

“Voodoo Child” by Jimi Hendrix

“Big Bad John” by Jimmy Dean

“Baby Please Don’t Go” by Van Morrison

“Jesus Just Left Chicago (And He’s Bound for New Orleans)” by ZZ Top

“Brown Sugar” by The Rolling Stones

“Mr. Bojangles” by The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band

“South Rampart Street Parade” by Al Hirt and His Band

 

Which Witch is Which

7 Feb

The other night, we, like a ton of other people, went to a Super Bowl party. It was a fun gathering with great food and great friends. As often happens, I learned a few things while I was there.

First, people at Super Bowl parties do not watch the Super Bowl. During the game, they eat, talk, mingle and all sorts of other things. I was guilty of this because I did not care who won the game. It was background music for what was happening within the room. However, the same people got quiet and paid attention to the halftime show.

In short, I learned that a lot of people watch a concert and a football game breaks out.

Secondly, I learned that Katy Perry, the halftime performer, is a witch. At least, this is what folks on social media were saying. Of course, that would be a pretty sharp turn for someone who used to be a Christian singer and likes to dance with Jabberjaw.Shark

A halftime show being performed by a witch follows a line of Super Bowl halftime shows that sent dark forces through our television screens.

Madonna’s performance was designed by the Illuminati and announced the arrival of the Antichrist. If you do not believe it, then look around the Internet. It is all right there.

Not to be outdone, Beyonce’s performance was also filled with Illuminati symbolism. I am not sure what message they were trying to get across, but Beyonce did all she could to get everyone’s attention. Heck, she even knocked out the lights, which allowed the field to be brought from the dark to the light. Illuminati was written all over it.

With all of the symbolism during these shows, I wonder if they used the symbol himself, Prince. That purple guitar has to mean something.

To honor Katy Perry’s witchiness and all of these performers for their service to the dark forces, here are a few of my favorite witches.

Samantha Stevens – She tried to hide her powers, but they always saved the day.Bewitched

However, I do not understand why someone with her skills did not notice when her husband turned into another person.

Stevie Nicks – My favorite witch of all time.Stevie

The dressed like a witch. She sang about witches. She is the coolest witch of all time.

The Bell Witch – I have to include some local lore. I will not go into the entire story, but she is the only witch to be officially recognized by the United States government.Bell Witch

Any kid who grows up in Tennessee knows that you never stand in front of a mirror and say her name three times.

Broom Hilda – We had a high school teacher that we called Broom Hilda.Broom Hilda

It was not nice, but she earned it.

Melisandre – Anyone who watches Game of Thrones knows all about her.Melisandre

She can convince kings to burn people at the stake, and she can give birth to smoke monsters.

Rhea of the Coos – There cannot be a list of witches without including one created by Stephen King.Rhea

The Dark Tower series is filled with dangerous characters, but Rhea of the Coos is one of the most dangerous.

The Witch – She does not need a name. She only needs her feminine ways to lure Conan the Barbarian into her lair.Conan

He threw her into a fire, but she came a lot closer to killing him than James Earl Jones ever did.

Marie Laveau – She was the Witch Queen of New Orleans and was said to remain forever young. Redbone recorded a great song about her, and people visit her grave.Marie

I have been there and drawn three X’s on her tomb. That is supposed to wake her up to offer some black magic help for anyone who needs it.

There are plenty of more witches out there casting spells and dancing in the woods. I wonder which one the Illuminati will get to perform at next year’s Super Bowl.

What is the South?

16 Jan

This semester, my colleague is teaching Southern U.S. History, and, on the first day, he asked his students to answer a simple question – what is the South? As it turns out, the question is not as simple as it appears, and the students have been trying to answer it for a couple of days.Question

I have been listening to the discussion as it takes place outside of my office door, and it has brought to mind a blog that I recently read. The person wrote about how they wanted to visit a southern city because they had never been to one. They had been to New Orleans but did not think that counted. The Big Easy was too diverse to be truly southern.

I was taken aback by the blog because New Orleans is one of the most southern of cities. Apparently, the blogger thought that a southern city should be a place where people put on their camouflage caps and rebel flag t-shirts; hop into their pickup trucks; and crank up the country music station.

Of course, those people exist. However, the South is more than that. It has different geography. It had different foods. People speak with different accents. In short, the South is a diverse region, and New Orleans is a perfect example of that.

However, that does not answer the question that was asked of the students. What is the South? Well, it is a matter of perspective. It depends on area. It depends on race. It depends on the person who is answering the question.

Obviously, people have different opinions about the South. Some think of its faults, and others think of its more positive qualities. I can only think about it from my point of view. When I answer the question, this is what I come up with.

The South is:

drinking sweet tea.

having people from other parts of the country make fun of your accent when their accents are just as strange.

the Blues.

reading Flannery O’Connor and William Faulkner.

not being able to live without air conditioning.

eating black-eyed peas and hog jowl on New Year’s Day.

driving on country roads on a Sunday afternoon.

being washed in the blood.

hiking the trails of the Great Smoky Mountains.

eating baloney on crackers with a little hot sauce on top.

growing up as a non-football player in a region that worships football players.

going to college football games and worshipping players on a Saturday afternoon.

listening to the Allman Brothers and the Marshall Tucker Band.

feeling shame when watching film of Bull Connor’s forces using fire hoses and dogs on protestors.

saying I want a Coke when ordering a soft drink and knowing that someone who calls it pop is from somewhere else.

attending a NASCAR race and thinking I could do that.

driving the Natchez Trace from Nashville to Natchez.

going to church and having a “dinner on the ground.”

walking in the footsteps of Elvis at Graceland.

drinking Jack Daniels.

eating at a locally owned Meat and Three.

greeting strangers as you walk past them.

knowing that the region has had some serious issues.

being proud of where I live despite knowing about those problems because there are some great things about it, too.

To me, that is the South.

A National Championship and the Lessons of History

4 Jun

Last week, the Cumberland University baseball team won the NAIA national championship. It is the third time in the past ten years that the baseball program has claimed the top prize. The coach, Woody Hunt, is a legend in these parts and has led the program for three decades.Cumberland Baseball

A couple of days ago, we had a celebration for the team. There was a parade, and hundreds of people showed up at the baseball field to honor the players and the coaches. Several people spoke, and I was lucky enough to be one of them. As Faculty Athletic Representative, I track the academic progress of all student/athletes and make sure that they are on the way to completing their degrees.

A lot of the baseball players have been in my classes and, hopefully, have gotten the point that history is important. We can learn from our past and use that information to move into the future. In fact, a lesson from the past convinced me that they were going to win the NAIA World Series.

The event was held in Lewiston, Idaho, home of Lewis-Clark State College. That is important because their team was in the World Series, as well. In fact, that is who the Cumberland Bulldogs had to beat to win the championship.

Lewis-Clark State College is names after Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, who Thomas Jefferson chose to lead an expedition into the Louisiana Territory. It is one of the most famous stories in our nation’s history. Lewis and Clark, with the help of Sacagawea, led a band of men through uncharted land to determine exactly what Jefferson had purchased. They returned in a couple of years with fantastic tales of the land and its people.

They were heroes and were treated as such. However, that is not the end of the story. After the journey, Meriwether Lewis faced difficulties in several aspects of his life. Finally, he left his home in New Orleans to travel to Washington, D.C. Lewis want to see Jefferson, his old patron. He traveled the Natchez Trace toward Nashville and was almost to the city when he stopped at a roadside tavern.

Meriwether Lewis never left that tavern. He was fatally shot, and the mystery of who did it continues to this day. The proprietors buried him in the yard, and his grave can be visited. A broken obelisk stands above him.Lewis Grave

So, how did this story convince me that our baseball team would win the national championship? Meriwether Lewis survived great dangers on his journey into the West. However, he could not survive his journey into Tennessee. With that in mind, I saw no way that a school named after him could beat a team from Tennessee.

The Great Month of May

31 May

Thanks to all of you readers, this has been the best month in the history of this blog. Wait, I should not put it that way. That has been the best month in the history of this blog that did not include being Freshly Pressed. That happened last year and created a stats page that looked like rat going through a snake.

This month has been consistently good with you guys showing up to read whatever stupid stuff I put on the screen. The most read post was something I write a long time ago called Let’s Go Peay! That was followed by:

You Never Know What You are Going to Learn at the First Presbyterian Church

The Legend of the Shadow Horse Gang

Hey, Nashville! Be a Real Music City and Build an Amphitheater

A Long Night in Old Nashville

Things I Learned at a Cher Concert

Sandy Springs Park – My Personal Field of Dreams

The Power of Dean

Narrows of the Harpeth

Movie Wisdom – Burt Reynolds Edition

Many of year follow this blog and check in from time to time. However, others get here through a search engine. This month, the most popular search terms were:

statue de lincoln hillsboro (oregon)

boot hill cemetery

scenery outlaw josey wales

escorts of tunica,ms

glen campbell prostitute

western actors

going to the fair to

cher concert she made a mistake

groom texas crucifixion of christ

May 2014 has been an important month in the SBI World.May

To further commemorate, I decided to throw in a little history. I am a historian, after all.

May 2004 – Terry Nichols was convicted for his role in the Oklahoma City bombing.

May 1994 – Nelson Mandela was inaugurated as South Africa’s president.

May 1984 – The World’s Fair opened in New Orleans.

May 1974 – India successfully detonated its first nuclear weapon.

May 1964 – Congress declared that bourbon as a “distinctive product of the United States.”

May 1954 – Roger Bannister became the first person to run a mile in under four minutes.

May 1944 – The USS England sank six Japanese submarines in two weeks.

May 1934 – The Dionne children, the first quintuplets to survive infancy, are born.

May 1924 – J. Edgar Hoover was named head of the Bureau of Investigation.

May 1914 – Woodrow Wilson signed a Mother’s Day proclamation.

Again, thanks for making May a great month.

Bane, Beyonce and Buffalo Wild Wings

6 Feb

Everyone knows that the Super Bowl turned into the NFL version of Vicki Lawrence’s 1972 hit “The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia“. The biggest sporting event that the United States has to offer came to a screeching halt, and officials of all sorts began to scramble all over themselves. Well, Twitter didn’t come to a halt, and those in the Twitterverse began to scramble to come up with the wittiest comments.

Like millions, I scanned my Twitter feed during this dark time and, like millions, noticed that I was reading the same stuff over and over. Twitter people come up with some very imaginative and funny lines, but they can also become copycats. I noticed that a few themes began to emerge. The first person who tweeted this things were being original and funny. The next billion or so were a little late to the “Super Bowl of the Dark Ages” party.

Bane was everywhere. Or was it Baine. No, it could have been Bain. For a one syllable named villain, there sure were a lot of spelling versions. He was an obvious reference for the interrupted game. It the movie, he blows up the field during a kickoff return for a touchdown. In real life, the lights went out after a kickoff return for a touchdown. I understand the reference and found it clever the first time. But, I didn’t find it clever the 10,000th time.

SPELL MY NAME!!!

SPELL MY NAME!!!

Beyonce was also all over Twitter. Of course, she was all over Twitter before the lights went out. All of the tweets were about her pulling all of the power out of the stadium or about her booty bumping into the generator. Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if either one of those were the actual cause.

We bow to you, Mrs Carter.

We bow to you, Mrs Carter.

I thought the references to Buffalo Wild Wings were the most ingenious. For those who don’t know, the restaurant chain has a long running advertising campaign where patrons delay sporting events to stay in the bar longer. If I was the CEO of Buffalo Wild Wings, then I would have a new commercial out a fast as possible.

Yes, it was us.

Yes, it was us.

Those were funny, even though they got stale after a while. Another trend I did not find funny at all. Several tweets went out that mentioned how it was rich people who were trapped in the Super Dome this time. Obviously, this was a reference to people being trapped in the Super Dome during Hurricane Katrina. Also obviously, it was coming from people with a more liberal view of politics. I know this because there were some other tweets about it being the fault of the GOP.

Making fun of the GOP is fine, but I felt that the tweets took light of the situation during Katrina rather than making an overt political statement. It’s strange that those who consider themselves the most enlightened are sometimes the cruelest when attacking those who disagree with them. Folks on the extreme left and right will think this crazy, but I think they have more in common than they realize. Close-mindedness and refusing to understand the other view come to mind.

Ok, I didn’t mean to get on a political soapbox when I am actually on a Twitter soapbox. Now, back on track.

I’m not good at being funny on Twitter because I have an affliction. I think of clever stuff after the moment has passed. With that being said, here are some not clever things that I thought about after it was all over.

Andrew Jackson saved New Orleans once. He should have gone down there and saved it again. I know. History humor is not that humorous. Still, it took a Tennessee person to save New Orleans from the British, so I figure he could save it from Bane or Beyonce or Buffalo Wild Wings.

Hell, they already put up a statue of him down there.

Hell, they already put up a statue of him down there.

As an aside, it seems to always take a Tennessee person to get something done. Jackson saved New Orleans. Sam Houston brought in Texas. James K. Polk grabbed California. Cordell Hull created the United Nations. Tina Turner was Beyonce before there was a Beyonce.

I also thought of Marie Laveau, the witch queen of New Orleans. Redbone sang a song about her, but there is something better. If you knock on her grave three times, then she may grant you a wish. I knocked, but I didn’t get the wish. I figure she turned out the lights because the Super Bowl interrupted Mardi Gras.

Knock three times.

Knock three times.

However, I had another idea that was most fitting. The lights went out to honor Don Meredith, quarterback and Monday Night Football personality. Watch the video to understand why.

Turn out the lgihts. The party's over.

Turn out the lights. The party’s over.

That’s about it for my Super Bowl Twitter analysis.

Listeria – Travelogue Edition

17 Oct

The latest issue of Travel and Leisure has an article called “101 Places Every Traveler Should Know”. As you know, I am a freak for lists, so I scanned the article to see which ones I have visited. The following is my personal list from the 101, along with a three word synopsis of each.

The Road to Somewhere

2. Maine – lots of lobster

7. Las Vegas – please read this

14. New York City – too many people

17. Kauai, Hawaii – most beautiful island

24. London – where’s the queen?

26. Jackson Hole, Wyoming – outdoor adventures galore

27. Salmon River, Idaho – riding rapids rapidly

33. San Francisco – tour Alcatraz Island

40. Miami – hot women everywhere

41. Los Angeles – seeing fallen stars

45. Napa Valley – vine to bottle

49. British Virgin Islands – hitting the bars

51. Chicago – my favorite city

54. Charleston, South Carolina – history and food

55. Amsterdam – red light district

59. Big Island, Hawaii – lots of lava

60. Sedona, Arizona – get some crystals

68. Venice – birdshit never dries

78. Yosemite National Park – beauty beyond belief

89. Rome – ancient and modern

95. New Orleans – varieties of decadence