Friday, November 30, 2007

today and tomorrow

This morning's not-so-hungover-hangover was brought to you by: Shiner Bock, New Orleans Amber Rum, and the letter W.

Tomorrow's? Champane Happy Hour at Savvy Gourmet

My co-worker told me our love affair had to end, as I am killing her slowly with alcohol and cigarettes.


Some guy has taken (and since released) two hostages in HRC's campaign office in New Hampshire. What the fuck. Two hostages freed at Clinton campaign office.

Wonkette speculates on who this psychopath is.

It's amazing how when you're actually working and doing your job, you're in your own little world and oblivious to the bigger things going around you.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Here come the Chinese

I like tequila. I'm a little snobby about it. So, of course this caught my eye - 'Chinese' tequila worries Mexico.

The title is a bit more sensational than the actual issue. It appears that parts of China have a similar climate to certain areas of Mexico. Thus, the plants indigenous to Mexico are able to flourish as they would in their natural habitat. The plants in question are maguey and to a lesser extent nopal. While maguey is a form of agave, it is not the blue agave in which true tequila is made from. In fact, it is used to make mezcal, which is a product similar to tequila. In addition to being from another plant, mezcal generally comes from a region other than Tequila - Oaxaca. Mezcal is also of the "tequila worm" fame.

So I guess what it boils down to is that the Chinese are wanting to produce maguey to make mezcal, which the general public (and the media, it appears) generally doesn't differentiate from tequila. Because tequila has grown in popularity the last 10-15 years, China can make some bank in the tequila market.

What Mexico wants is denomination of origin so that tequila (and I guess mezcal) can only go by such a name if it comes from Mexico. This Chinese stuff would have to have another name. You know, like Syrah is from France and Shiraz is from Australia.

See also:
The Grande Enchilada
The Incontiguous Brick

[h/t: Beegs]

ALTL's tequila advice to you: Quit drinking Cuervo Gold, 1800, and Sauza. The 2006 Tequila Trade Agreement allows for tequilas such as these to be bottled outside of the country. They are only required to be 51% blue agave, while the real stuff is, well, 100%. Read the fine print at the Cuervo website: Imported and/or bottled in the United States by Heublein, Norwalk, CT. Get yourself to Dos Jefes or Yo Mama's and order yourself a Herradura Reposado. Neat. No training wheels. Sip it. Give tequila a real chance.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

A day in the life...

Last night my co-worker and I had a date with that attractive bottle to the right. The date went so well that we almost finished the entire bottle. Needless to say today was a little rough, but never dull in our office environment.

Today's early morning buzz was someone all up in arms about the racist trash debacle, already claiming that the mayor is going to be on the outs and discussing the line of succession if the mayor resigns. He was all excited as the prospect of Jackie Clarkson becoming the Acting Mayor, as she will be president of the Council soon. Unfortunately someone said to him "Well, if the mayor is indicted he won't resign, history has shown us that." I was sort of interested, so I dug up the City Charter and it appears that the City Council appoints one of the two council members-at-large, the prez isn't simply a shoe-in. Sorry buddy, Jackie's not in Ray Ray's office yet.

A series of posts on Wonkette had me near tears while not doing my work and pumping myself dull of fluids. This one was the highlight: Georgia man tries to use fake $1 million dollar bill, Fails. I mean, seriously? And then he got mad about it? The human race never ceases to amaze.

To top it all off, right as I was starting to feel normal again, I find out that Tales of the Toddy is sold out (of course my ass failed to buy tickets in advance despite knowing for a month). It doesn't help that the people that work for Tales of the Cocktail are impossible to get in touch with, despite plastering their phone number(s) everywhere.

So instead I am continuing my recent-war-related movie marathon by watching Blood Diamond. In the last week this list has included Lord of War and Lions for Lambs.

This is very verbose, I must still be a bit intoxicated. If only ALTR would blog from time to time. Maybe she's taking notes on the YouTube GOP debate.

Monday, November 26, 2007

oh baby

Look how sexy Trashanova looks as he corner peeks with those brooding eyes and carefully tousled hair.

What is that bling on his finger? It's certainly not a wedding ring and he dropped out of LSU after a year to become BFFs with Lenny Kravitz.

On another note, doesn't Veronica White look frighteningly like Whitney Houston with that 'do?

stupid corporate America

I was reading this article and it just infuriated me: Mambo tangles with Anheuser-Busch over michelada beer.

Mambo Seafood is a chain of restaurants in Houston (maybe throughout Texas). Apparently they submitted a trademark application for their Mambo Michelada. Anheuser-Busch is all up in arms because they think - get this - it sounds like Michelob.

I guarantee you this is not because Mambo sounds like Michelob. It's the michelada part that somehow sounds as if it could be confused with michelada. News flash, A-B, the michelada is an old school drink found in Mexico! The Mambo owner explains...

The words michelada and chelada come from the Mexican slang for beer, or chela, said one beer analyst in Mexico City, who follows Mexican brewer Grupo Modelo, which is half owned by Anheuser-Busch.

Some say chelada. Some call it michelada. Some add tabasco sauce or other ingredients, depending on the part of Mexico where the drink is made, the beer analyst said.

"It depends on the region. We call anything that has beer and lime a michelada," said the analyst, who did not want to be identified.

Yeah, buddy. I learned to make a michelada by real live Mexicans back during my booze slinging days during a World Cup match. Throw some hot sauce and lime juice (drop or two or Worcestershire if you like) in the bottom of a salt-rimmed glass and top it off with a nice dark Mexican beer, preferably a Negra Modelo. This is not some new invention. Is it simply because someone thought to trademark it?

I gotta agree with the article, Anheuser-Busch is just trying to edge out the little guy, while trying to make more room for their own awful canned michelada the Budweiser Chelada. You just can't can things like that! It's like that stupid canned/bottled mojito from Bacardi. Barf.

mmm mmm good

Last Wednesday:

This Wednesday:
Tales of the Toddy

Monday, November 19, 2007

Now that the election is over, what shall we do?!

I know some people that could benefit from this...


Saturday, November 17, 2007

Ms. Mae's, hooray!

With the news that Ms. Mae's is back up and running, I had to go see for myself what closure for almost two months had done to The Club. It's definitely a lot cleaner and has a new coat of paint. Things have been moved around, some things are gone. There are even new support polls to make sure the ceiling doesn't fall down! Can't say I miss the claw machine, but at least the cigarette machine will return soon.

Most disappointing, though, was the lack of Mardi Gras tiles in the women's bathroom. Despite assurances from the Wall of Shame that most of the tiles would return, the bathrooms were tile free. :(


I miss them!

It was almost as if nothing changed, the lady herself was there cleaning off tables. The typical crowd which always encompasses those from all walks of life. The intense pool games and the same bartenders.

Glad she's back up and running.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

The Club is back!!!

Celebrate the grand re-opening at Ms. Mae's Friday morning at 9 AM!

I never knew how much I missed you until you were gone...

So the fat lady has sung for Williams

Aside from the bruhaha that has erupted in the NOLA blogosphere in response the mailer that went out at the end of last week blasting Cheryl Gray, the Williams camp has been trucking along with the election challenge in the Senate District 5 race. Last Friday the Fourth Circuit ruled 6-5 to affirm the trial court's decision of no cause of action. Yes, only 11 opinions, as Chief Judge Armstrong had to excuse herself due to ties to the Williams family. Judge Tobias, who agreed to affirm, wrote something interesting:

I find that the plaintiff's petition states a cause of action. Ergo, the trial court was in error granting the peremptory exception of no cause of action. Given the time constraints for election contests set forth in La. R.S. 18:1409, the plaintiff/appellant was obligated to proffer the evidence that he would have presented at the trial of the merits of his case. When the trial court refused to allow the plaintiff/appellant to proffer the evidence, something the trial court was required by La. C.C.P. art. 1636 to do, the trial court again erred as a matter of law.
Basically, Judge Tobias cited that the trial court was wrong in it's decision, yet upheld the result because he alleged that Williams should have sought a writ of mandamus. The failure to do so caused Williams to lose the suit in this Fourth Circuit judge's opinion.

Of further interest is the opinion of Judge Lombard, who concurred with the majority opinion, but offered:
I am, however, disturbed by the allegation of a voter canvass conducted by the Secretary of State on election day. Such activities, if true, have a chilling effect on the voter, discouraging and often denying a citizen's constitutional right to vote.
Although ruling simply on the proceedings of the trial court, both judges displayed obvious doubt. And appeared to be perturbed by the allegations.

Judge Murray wrote a lengthy dissent, of note:
I believe the irregularities alleged by the petitioner herein are sufficiently serious to potentially affect the outcome of the election. Therefore, the trial court erred by dismissing the petition on the basis of the exception of no cause of action. Whether the petitioner is able to prove his allegations remains to be seen, as he was precluded from putting on any evidence in the trial court.

Judge Cannizzaro agreed with the above, but also dissented Judge Tobias's opinon, In conclusion, he wrote
I recognize a need for swift justice in cases involving elections. Notwithstanding, the overriding concern should be to ensure that the will of the electorate is constitutionally protected.

I think that about sums it up. Sure, you can claim that Williams is a whiner and should just suck it up. One blogger even alleged that he should simply support Cheryl Gray (see the comments). Unfortunately, it's not that simple. You're going to tell me that when you miss the run off by 50 votes and a candidate that was placed in the race to draw votes away from you, who was left on the ballot without notice to the voters after his withdrawal received approximately 1500 votes, you wouldn't contest that? I know the blogosphere holds a hollier-than-thou attitude, but seriously. That's 10% of the votes. When notices were posted for candidates' withdraw from different races, that withdrew closer to election time than Andrew Gressett (forgive me, I cannot recall the notices I saw at this time). Its sort of odd, don't you think?

Due to some confusion involving all parties, the paperwork to the Supreme Court was denied by a mere matter of minutes. Then the appeal of that was shot down 2-5. So the judicial system has served us all well again. Instead of simply taking the trial, Judge Medley at the CDC invoked the bureaucracy of the system to shut the case down. Williams was never able to present his evidence. 1500 votes were thrown out. The Clerk of Court doesn't see a problem with that, nor does the majority of the courts.

I know it was a tough case based on the sensitive nature, but politics never ceases to amaze.

Child abuse defined

Nevermind protecting the rights of the unborn - what about the rights of those who cannot vote but have their political affiliation forced upon them?

This gem is courtesy of the Romney's (hottie) sons' Five Brothers Blog which ALTR reads for all the wrong reasons.

Sadly, this picture reminds me of a Bill Jefferson campaign "worker" I saw around this time last year sleeping in a chair at the corner of Claiborne and Nashville, sporting a Dollar Bill t-shirt and all.

In other Romney news, Jossip reports on the Osmonds' opinions on the former Massachusetts governor.

Back in the saddle again

Speaking of ethics reform, so far this week ALTR has dealt with 2 ethical dilemmas at her 9 to 5. One such dilemma involved the hiring of a controversial employee; the other involved sex. I took the high road on one, and the low road on another. With which dilemma did I do the right thing, you wonder? Well, let's just say that the sex was really good.

So, it's only Thursday morning, and the week has already been full of controversy. And BTW, in case you're like me, don't forget that you have an election to vote in on Saturday. Yeah, I almost forgot too. But, as Adrastos suggests, I'm not the only person who feels this way.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

About a month back...

One beautiful Sunday afternoon I was huddled in bed watching Blades of Glory and nursing my hangover. I suddenly hear the familiar sounds of a brass band float up to my room. I've heard this before.

I head out to the balcony and low and behold...

Some social club who's name I failed to recall took over my street for about 20 minutes. The people sitting on my stoop, trashing all the yard's, peeing down driveways, and jumping in the bed of pickup trucks and jumping up and down didn't phase my glee at the scene.

Gotta love living in New Orleans.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

just out of curiosity...

If you were running for public office, would you go out on a blind date?

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

the fat lady has not sung.

No one has really been talking about it, but David Williams has filed suit in CDC calling for a new election in the Senate District 5 primary election. Many people told of irregularities at the polls (our very own ALTR was told she could not vote, her name wasn't on the list until she pointed it out to them), but the biggest issue in this situation is that the Republican candidate Andrew Gressett withdrew a month prior to the election. His name was still on the ballot (as the only Republican candidate, mind you) and there was no notice posted at any of the precincts to indicate that he was no longer in the race. Come to find out, he received 1500 votes.

WGNO was at the CDC Monday covering the judge's ruling - video here, you're going to have to scroll down to 11/05/07 - David Williams Sues.

I love that Arthur Morrell explains:

You know, people are gonna vote for someone who's dropped anyway, it's just the way people are, so. And there was nothing at all to indicate that people would have voted differently.

I really have a hard time choking this statement down. If people knew the candidate were no longer viable, they would still vote for him or her? I mean, forgetting the fact that the candidate's name was still on the ballot. Isn't Morrell embarrassed that his office can't do it's job properly? I mean, amongst the other defendants named.

Two more words: secret ballot. Seriously.

We called it back in September after Gressett filed, this would be a problem for Williams. But who knew that after Gressett withdrew the government would fail to be competent? Wait, I guess everyone knew that. We just didn't know it would cost Williams the election.

EDIT: Some Came Running had some thoughts on the suit prior to trial.

I also wanted to note that the appeal is in the 4th circuit, where Williams was once a judge.

good morning, sunshine

You know how sometimes there are outside noises that make their way into your dreams right before you wake up? This morning my alarm was going off and my clock is set to some random radio station that's always these guys complaining about something or another. This morning the guy on the air swears that we will see pedophilia legalized in our lifetime.

I just don't see that NAMBLA has the same support that the Human Rights Campaign does. Nor will it accumulate that sort of support anytime soon. I think polygamy will be okay before pedophilia garners support from the bulk of the nation.

Homeboy needs to quit projecting his fears. Besides, he sounded far too old to have to worry about some other controversial thing happening in his lifetime.

Good morning, indeed.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

a little bit funny

It's sort of a weird feeling when the ex-wife of a former professor calls in to talk to you about a domestic dispute she had in 2002 with said professor that your boss dealt with.

It's interesting mainly because said professor was always such a weirdo and you and your classmates often wondered about his personal life.

anger, rawr!

With the joys of e-mail, there is bound to be at least one person who sends you ridiculous forwards. For me, it's a customer I once had while living in small town Texas who is the nicest little lady, although red neck and totally conservative. This morning I opened this e-mail:

This is scary...see the snopes link at the bottom for more detailed information.

This was sent to me and I found it interesting enough to pass on. Regardless of which choices I make, they are supposed to be educated ones. Since I knew nothing about it I thought maybe someone else may not either.

I just wanted to warn all Christian parents to avoid the upcoming movie "The Golden Compass" put out by New Line Cinema and Scholastic entertainment. It is due out in December. It looks like a fun movie! But this is the first movie based on the trilogy of books titled "His Dark materials."

The author of the books, Philip Pullman is a militant atheist whose professed purpose with these books is to turn kids away from Christianity. He has said this outright. The first movie has been cleaned up to avoid a lot of objections - it is apparently not going to be too bad BUT ...the movie is bait for the books which are horrible. The books get progressively worse with the heroes (children) in the 3rd book actually killing God, who is depicted as a little shrunken man. I am not kidding. This sounds too terrible to believe, but unfortunately it is not.

It stars Nicole Kidman.

See the website below for more info. & verification:

This sort of things irritate the hell out of me. A month or so back I got this ridiculous e-mail about HRC being the devil incarnate and I had to respond to all "Oh noes, a woman president will end the world!" I have already hit reply to all and am currently deciding whether or not I should go ahead and send my response:
Is it so scary that people are allowed freedom of speech?

The Chronicles of Narnia, a pro-Christian series of books has been around for nearly 60 years with underlying tones of sexism and racism. A movie of the first book was made in 2005 and the next is expected in 2008. Was that scary to the general public?

His Dark Materials was first published in the mid-90s and is being made into a movie that will be totally dumbed down, losing the bulk of Pullman's anti-Christian themes. Do kids even go from movies to books these days? Or is it because there is a character named Mrs. Coulter who is actually quite sinister and evil that has the religious right so incensed?

A part of me is like, don't bother, this is just an FYI e-mail going around so people will be educated on their movie choices. But it's more than that. With words like scary, horrible, etc., it's clearly biased, but what more do we expect from that crowd? These people are just so damn closed minded. Don't we have bigger fish to fry than worrying about a dumbed down movie?! How about all the soldiers being killed in Iraq? Oh, wait, you think they're dying for a good cause. How about your children going around having unprotected sex? Oh wait, you only believe in abstinence until marriage.


Sunday, November 4, 2007

Future judges love pancakes too.

This morning a very hungover ALTR and friend saw Criminal Court judge candidate Laurie White at Betsy's on Canal St. She was seen schmoozing with fellow Betsy's customers. I thought about asking for a free DUI pass but Laurie seemed otherwise occupied.

Oh boy, it looks like the Saints will be putting Jeffrey's pants theory to the test by rocking the solid black.

At least Mare made the first field goal attempt.

I need a drink.

Adventures in outlet shopping...

Recently ALTR, ALTL and co. ventured into the great state of Mississippi to treat ourselves to some outlet shopping. The highlight of the trip was the Polo store.

Now, this particular store wasn't for the claustrophobic at heart. Nor for those that hate lines. They had three people working the registers, each line about 6 people deep with an average check out time of approximately 11 minutes. This average is largely thrown off by the coon asses in front of line 1 (Initially I thought these customers were what ALTR refers to as my people - Mexicans. But as soon as they opened their mouths it was clear. I am also a coon ass.).

One lady gets in line. The other two are shopping. They continue to shop as the line moves at a snail's pace, loading Lady in Arms down with various over-priced clothing, even at an outlet store. Lady in Pink even tears the one sales associate on the floor away from her attempts at recovering the wrecked store to seek out a V-neck something or other in LSU purple because the crew neck just won't cut it. Lady in Fleece assists Lady in Pink, even encouraging her to go to the fitting room and try things on while she destroys the folded clothes looking for new things to give her to try on (seriously, there is not that big of a variety of products - it's all pretty basic). Lady in Arms continues to stand in line, as Lady in Pink and Lady in Fleece continue to run back and forth and pile more and more clothing upon her. If I didn't know better, I would have thought Lady in Arms was holding a baby and there were just piles of Polo clothing suffocating it. But no, it was all clothes.

Finally the Ladies get to the register and that's where the fun begins. The check out process was slow to begin with because the store was clearly understaffed to work this spend-$150-get-a-$25-gift-card promotion. But the Ladies...oh the Ladies. Not only were they here for the previously mentioned promotion, but they brought internet coupons! Throw about five items on the counter, play the oh-will-we-make-$150-no?-add-this-shirt-close?-ok-try-these-socks game until the reached $150. Then use the coupon, play the game again, get the gift card, end transaction. Repeat. Then the ladies are using their previously awarded gift cards on their next purchases. As well as the coupons.

Let's just say it got to the point where the customers in line behind the Ladies were openly talking about how inconsiderate this operation was to the 5+ people in line behind them. After Lady in Arms was finally free and Lady in Pink and Lady in Fleece were standing at the counter, she goes back on the floor and starts shopping some more! Seriously? Wow. The check out process took over a half hour. I thought for sure there was going to be a bitch throw down in the men's sweater section where everyone in line was confined. When the chick directly behind the Ladies said something to them the response was something to the tune of "Gurrrl, we just spent $700, so there." Way to go, you got $1400 worth of merchandise for $700 and in the meantime made enemies for life. Watch your back as you walk back to your vehicle, arms full of bags, because someone is going to deck you or follow you and key the fuck out of your car!" It was that bad.

It's one thing to have transactions like that when there is no else in line. It is one thing if you make one or two and then go to the back of the line so the 5+ people behind you can check out and not slit your throat. But it is something else altogether when you are so inconsiderate to your fellow humans that you are such an ignorant, raging asshole.

Can't say that I miss working in retail after that one. The best part of this adventure was that I wasn't purchasing anything.

LSU really has the best fans. They are exemplary folks like this. We tried to explain to ALTR this is why she should not sport LSU gear in public, but she wasn't hearing it.