This Week’s Various

As always, all images here copyright DeepFriedKudzu; others are noted and credited, used with thanks via Creative Commons licenses. Interested in using a pic? Email me. Thanks

Turnbull Bakery in New Orleans has closed again (a 105-year-old institution) so no more melba toast.

Tomato Aspic
From the Washington Post (are you so ready, too, for Sunday night when we get the new season of Downton Abbey???): ‘On Downton Abbey, Aspic Matters‘.

God's Treehouse

Side View of the World's Largest Treehouse

(Both these images by J. Stephen Conn, under Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0). Thank you!)
The local newspaper there calls the closing of the Minister’s Treehouse / art environment one of its top stories of 2012, and reports that it’s still closed.

The WSJ writes about the American Folk Art Museum‘s crummy year, and that it had to forfeit 210 promised gifts.  The museum will be showing a Bill Traylor exhibit this summer.

Edgar Ray Killen thinks he has just cause (or at least is trying to convince the court) for a new trial in the 1964 deaths of Chaney, Schwerner, and Goodman.  I attended his trial in 2005 when he was finally convicted. I hope that no more taxpayer dollars are wasted on his behalf in this regard.

(Pics from one of our visits to the Audubon Zoo🙂
Audubon Zoo, New Orleans

Audubon Zoo, New Orleans

Audubon Zoo, New Orleans

The likely reason why lightning bugs aren’t exhibited more at zoos…  While some people have started butterfly habitats at their homes, I’ve thought about lightning bugs (and researched it a couple of years ago)…this current discussion between those in the animal keeping profession touches on how difficult it would be.

Salvation Mountain Revisited at the San Diego Reader.

Image used courtesy BeFrank under Creative Commons license.  Thank you!

The CSMonitor reports:
The bearded builder of “Phonehenge West,” a structure that became a famed piece of Mojave Desert folk art, is heading to jail after a Los Angeles County judge found he wasn’t paying enough toward the demolition of the fortress.

Los Angeles County charged builder Alan Kimble “Kim” Fahey $82,000 last year to demolish the structure, which included a 70-foot tower, stained-glass windows, a working windmill, and a replica of a Viking house in Antelope Valley, some 50 miles north of Los Angeles. This week, L.A. County Superior Court Judge Daviann Mitchell sentenced him to 539 days in jail after raising doubts about his inability to make payments on the bill.

The judge’s decision has sparked outrage among Fahey supporters, who claimed the structure should have been protected as a unique example of American folk art. But citing administrative law, most pointedly requirements that county residents get prior approval before embarking on massive building projects, code enforcers refused to budge, a jury backed them up, and the judge is set on enforcing the sentence.

World's Flattest Beignets? Food Truck Outside Joe Patti's, Pensacola
Seriously flat beignets at a food truck outside Joe Patti’s in Pensacola.  They were still delicious.

Harbin Hot Springs Temple by SunRay Kelley
Image by Inhabitat, used under Creative Commons license. Thank you!

That CSMonitor article above refers back to a NYT article in late November on SunRay Kelley, who ‘has built perhaps 50-odd chimerical structures across the continent, from freaky folk palaces to Smurf huts.’

AT one time or another, Mr. Kelley has lived in almost all the dwellings on the homestead. First came the Earth House, in 1976, where he cast four bronze hands to hold up the roof beams. Next, Mr. Kelley moved above a workshop into an apartment he calls the Hoot, whose weathered timber bones wouldn’t look out of place at Winterfell. The friends and fellow travelers who moved into these places afterward have stayed for months or years, while pitching in on the bills.
Judy continues to own and rent out her old yoga studio. (What do you get when you cross yoga and a yurt? What Mr. Kelley calls “the Yogurt.”) He sculptured the undulating folds around the entrance during his first infatuation with cob, a cladding that mixes earth, straw and water.

Judy leases out the Sky House, too, a four-story marvel that resembles a Russian country church. Here as well, the ornamentation is wildly imaginative. The log rafters jut out past the roofline like a bowsprit or a narwhal’s tusk. The exposed pole ends soak during the endless spit of fall.
In fact, Mr. Kelley went shoeless for decades. “I was pretty religious about my barefootism,” he said, sinking into a chair in front of the kitchen fireplace. “Then I decided, every once in a while it’s not good to be too religious about anything.”

Slideshow here.

Real Lane Cake, From The Original Recipe
(above, a Lane Cake I made, half-devoured, resting for a moment in the fridge)

Sweet, sweet, sweet Southern Living / Time employees: that last issue in which one feature had chubby green letters at the top denoting recipes for all ‘The Frostings’…let’s not do that again.  It’s just all over the place at the website too, with frosting outnumbering icing at 453 to 103. You can fix this.  Thanks

Me, a loyal reader since 2nd grade, and (this is a stretch, but) 5th cousin 3x removed from your PF founder, LL Polk (who surely would have preferred icing)

State Capitol Building, Baton Rouge LA

Former Louisiana governor Edwin Edwards (governor for 16 years, later a prison resident for 8) and his new wife will be the subjects of a reality show, premiering on AandE 2/27.

Sign, Loveless Cafe, Bellevue TN

The Loveless Cafe will have four chefs cooking at the James Beard House on Valentine’s Day. The supper will have five courses, one served family-style (one of the first according to them). From The Tennessean:

Just a sampling of the menu includes Pimento Cheese Profiteroles with Bread-and-Butter Pickles, George’s Watermelon Ribs with Southern Squash Casserole and Fried Squash Blossom with Bonnie Blue Farm Tennessee Goat Cheese, and, of course, Loveless biscuits with homemade preserves.

Hallway at the Alluvian Hotel, Greenwood MS

Viking has a new owner.  Fred Carl Jr will remain president and CEO, but the company is now owned by Middleby Corporation in Elgin, Illinois (those of us who are so crazy-proud of Viking, and it being in Greenwood, and what that’s done for Greenwood, and those of us who have snuggled up in rooms at the beautiful Alluvian and praised FCjr because Viking is why it’s there after all, and the fact that Viking is made here in the USA — here in the South…well, we are observing a moment of silence…).

Fred Carl says things are staying in Greenwood.

But still, groan.  Story here at the Commercial Appeal.

Downtown Nashville, Facing the 'Batman' Building
Interested in this Wildsam Field Guide to Nashville — looks different:
“Part almanac, part urban lore, part best-of, part memoir, the first Wildsam Field Guide focuses on Nashville, Tennessee, once monikered Gunpowder City, origin of cotton candy and Cracker Barrel, northern end point to the Natchez Trace. The field guide explores all of that and more. From illustrated maps of comfort food and music stops, to stories from Rosanne Cash, Tony Earley and Senator Bill Frist, Wildsam digs deep to find the taproots of the Music City.

Inside you’ll find a never-published note scribbled by Johnny Cash; the story of Jesse James living on Fatherland Street; a taxonomy of songbirds; the lifespan of the Ryman; Mayo’s fried pies; contents of a Civil War knapsack; a historic look at the Billboard Hot 100; poisonous snakes; debutantes; handmade neckties and Arnold’s Country Kitchen; the world’s smallest art gallery and Jack White’s rolling record store.”

…and they mentioned Mayo’s — makes my heart flutter; I’m a big fan (I’ll post on Mayo’s next week. Gracious…

Porterhouse at Doe's Eat Place, Greenville MS
(above: the porterhouse we order at Doe’s in Greenville — Av’s favorite steak anywhere)

John Kessler from the AJC on the ‘new way to cook steak’ which…if you’ve flipped through the new Modernist Cuisine at Home, it involves taking a Prime steak, freezing it for an hour, searing it, then basically roasting it in a slow oven until it reaches temp.

Your for the day: Nicola Verlato’s 2010 work, ‘Cleveland, Mississippi 1932‘.

My friend Larry Harris, who built a small-scale replica of the Watts Towers (his model appeared on The Simpsons during one episode, shown above) will be at an exhibit, ‘Farfetched: Mad Science, Fringe Architecture, and Visionary Engineering’ at the Gregg Museum of Art at North Carolina State University, 1/17 – 4/26.

The Gregg Museum’s spring 2013 exhibition Farfetched: Mad Science, Fringe Architecture and Visionary Engineering takes as its basic point of departure British mathematician Alfred North Whitehead’s famous quip that, “Every really new idea looks crazy at first.” The exhibition will feature objects that question (and push) the boundaries of what is considered “normal” in art and technology.

For example, Frank Lloyd Wright was considered a great architect, and Norman Bel Geddes was recognizeda great designer, but neither Wright’s visionary mile high city (The Illinois), nor Geddes’s proposed flying wing (Air Liner Number 4) ever proved feasible (no wonder; the air liner would have had nine decks and incorporated areas for deck-games, an orchestra, a gymnasium, a solarium and a machine shop for in-flight repairs).

Meanwhile, an uneducated Hispanic handyman named Simon Rodia, who was labeled insane, really did manage to build the famous Watts Towers in Los Angeles—singlehandedly and so sturdily that the towers couldn’t be torn down (city engineers tried). Some of the greatest scientists, architects, and engineers who ever lived—Galileo, Newton, Tesla, Marconi, the Wright brothers—were accused of insanity at one time or another during their careers.

Thinking big (or “thinking outside the box”) in both art and science means taking risks, and even risking failure. To make this point, Farfetched will include works by both mainstream and “outsider” artists and scientists, ranging from Perpetual Motion Machines to Orgone Generators.

We did the stereotypical thing on Christmas Day — ate Chinese food.  We actually planned on Chinese and a movie like always, but the weather was supposed to be severe so we didn’t want to chance it in a theater…

What exactly did these traffic lights that day mean? Other than, um, stop, I guess:

Confused Traffic Lights
Av went that morning to the Merry Mitzvah Day activities at Children’s Hospital Uptown (since we’re Jewish, there’s not a lot to do on Christmas Day, so we like to do for others, and that’s what mitzvahs are all about no matter what day of the year it is. This is usually when I’m making my 20-30 pies for a church that serves the hungry that day. In Mobile, too, members of the community work at hospitals in certain staffing areas so that people who celebrate Christmas can instead be home with their families. Each community usually does something a little different, but it’s nice.). When he got back, we were ready for lunch so we left and you can see how awful the weather looked from the pic above. We decided to drive out to Kenner and have lunch at Little Chinatown since it gets so many good reviews. Wow was that good!  I knew when we walked in and could see the ducks on the rotisserie in the back of the restaurant that we chose well.

Little Chinatown Restaurant, Kenner LA
We joked that ‘Intestine with Xo Sauce’ is, as we say in Alabama, ‘Chitlins with kiss-hug sauce’.

Little Chinatown Restaurant, Kenner LA

Oh that duck!!!
Little Chinatown Restaurant, Kenner LA

Beginning January 21, the Dallas Museum of Art is offering free general admission.  The world needs more access to art. Bravo, Dallas!!

Thanks a million times to my friend, the wonderful artist Bethanne Hill, for sharing this link to Tabby Cabins in Georgia — I’ve seen tabby a thousand times and never knew what it was called.  Here’s a beautiful website with tabby taking on different forms. Wondering: does this qualify as tabby too?:
Shell Monument at Pine Flat Methodist Church Cemetery, Butler County AL

Face Jugs by Jerry Brown, Kentuck

(above: some of Jerry Brown‘s face jugs at a past Kentuck)

BoingBoing had this article on 3D scanning/printing of 19th century face jugs this week. Face Jugs: Art and Ritual in 19th-century South Carolina opens at the Birmingham Museum of Art (another great free admission museum).

Kelly Smith Trimble, who I worked with to produce some projects for the Lowe’s Creative Ideas magazine, did a fun piece for HGTV for Winter Garden Stalking in New Orleans.

Waffle House and the Strip, Tuscaloosa
Above, the Waffle House on the Strip in Tuscaloosa.  There is actually a ‘Waffle House Index’ — no joke — used by FEMA, coined by director Fugate. I heard about this and couldn’t decide if it was real or not. But is is. This from FEMA’s own link to EHSToday:
If a Waffle House store is open and offering a full menu, the index is green. If it is open but serving from a limited menu, it’s yellow. When the location has been forced to close, the index is red. Because Waffle House is well-prepared for disasters… it’s rare for the index to hit red.

CBS’ 60 Minutes is going to have a segment this weekend on the big change at the Times-Picayune:

Happy New Year, and Roll Tide! xoxo!

Leave a Reply