Some handpainted goodness from Selma, Alabama
There are a lot of ways to spell barbecue barbeque bbq bar-b-q bar-b-que bar-b-cue
and here we have bar-be-que
In November, we spent part of one morning enjoying Hattiesburg, Mississippi’s Pocket Museum — the “Tiniest Museum in Mississippi” which has even had a mention in the Washington Post.
The public is invited to submit collections for consideration to being featured — really, it’s an alley next to the Saenger, so there’s lots of room all around for little installations.
Because we’re the kind of people who get excited about new hotels opening, we really couldn’t wait to see what Marriott had done with the art deco Threefoot building in downtown Meridian, Mississippi. Branding it Tribute Portfolio means that — in Marriott’s terms — it’s one of their “characterful, independent hotels drawn together by its passion for captivating design drive to create vibrant social scenes for guests and locals alike” and that’s really just a lot of words in wonky phrasing that could probably mean a lot of things. Here, list of Tribute Portfolio hotels.
In 2003, I took this pic of downtown Meridian, before the MSU Riley Center had opened and downtown was looking more empty than anything. That big building is the Threefoot.
Threefoot came about when the Dreyfuss family came to the US and had their name anglicized.
We’ve been following what’s going on with this building forever. Back in 2014, Av was invited inside and took these pics:
When we stayed at the Threefoot in late November right after they opened:
The staff was very nice; the room seemed small (though it’s an old building, so…)
…but the bathroom was rather spacious in comparison.
We’d definitely stay here again, and I’m glad we had this opportunity to see more of the building, but the room itself didn’t exude a particular charm (that could have likely been more easily achieved had the designers embraced the built-in art deco design elements that are already here rather than create a space that would be home…anywhere) that would lend itself to “can’t wait for next time” status.
In that category currently — I can’t wait to get back to: Ritz-Carlton, New Orleans // Cosmopolitan, Las Vegas // Mansion on Forsyth Park, Savannah // 21C Museum Hotel, Bentonville // The Driskill, Austin // St Anthony Hotel, San Antonio // Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island
In November, we visited Mooresville, Alabama and wound up using a pic I took of the boys at the 1839 Old Brick Church as our holiday card
It’s been used as both a Baptist mission and Methodist church and now belongs to the town of Mooresville
It can be rented for ceremonies.
This is the pic we used for our Chanukah cards (I like using Touchnote to make sending the cards so easy)
Here on the top of the steeple, a hand with finger pointing toward Heaven:
The only other church I know of with that particular feature is the 1859 First Presbyterian Church in Port Gibson, Mississippi:
One of my groups here is thinking of putting together a program with 1818 Farms in Mooresville. They have classes on things like raising backyard chickens, wreath making, and flower arranging.
I don’t know how the New Orleans Museum of Art can ever take down the Dawn DeDeaux: The Space Between Worlds (though it ends January 22) because it is absolutely perfect and if I’m a curator or director there I’m definitely thinking about what board members and big givers I can start a conversation with about how we need to build a new wing and voila this is our centerpiece. It needs never leave.
Daisy Space Clown in Black Field
The Mantle (I’ve seen the future and it was yesterday)
Granted, for obvious reasons I didn’t attend a lot of shows this past year, but no matter, this would have been my favorite anyway.
The Face of G-d, in search of
The museum describes:
…the first comprehensive museum exhibition for the pioneering multimedia artist Dawn DeDeaux. Since the 1970s, DeDeaux’s practice has spanned video, performance, photography, and installation to create art that exists at the edge of the Anthropocene. Anticipating a future imperiled by the runaway population growth, breakneck industrial development, and the looming threat of climate change, DeDeaux has long worked between worlds of the present and the future.
And this could have been dark and dangerous and uncomfortable, and it was all of those things, but not so much that it left one feeling awful, rather introspective and more considerate about situations that need more attention.
Target, After Jasper Johns
From NOMA: Since the 1970s, her art has addressed an ever-widening series of gulfs: between people, between cultures and communities, and ultimately between humans and the Earth itself. Living and working in Louisiana—one of the fastest disappearing landmasses in the world—DeDeaux has been grappling with urgent questions about Earth and humanity’s survival for the last fifty years. As we face a world increasingly imperiled by rising waters, roiling temperatures, unchecked pandemics, and escalating social strife, the future DeDeaux’s work has long foreseen is now.
Postcards to Teddy Roosevelt
Gulf to Galaxy
Where’s Mary video and Mary statue
For DeDeaux, physicist Stephen Hawking’s prediction in the early 2000s that humans have 100 years left—not to save the planet, but to figure out how to flee—sounded an alarm bell that humanity has a limited-time-only opportunity to come together and co-exist. Her art implores us to seize our last opportunity to heal past divisions, counter present inequality, and forestall future strife.
The Space Shroud
Dirt Bowl Table
CB Radio Booth
A boy in college took me to the Moulton Stockyard Steakhouse (there really is a stockyard in the back) on a first date.
I thought: wow, he gets me and knows I love experiences and I’m so grateful we’re not at Red Lobster or Olive Garden (he drove a dually, had a bass boat, and wore a cowboy hat and boots so he was staying on brand here).
Moulton Stockyard, Steakhouse Sign
Fiberglass animal friends on the 3rd floor
Moulton AL, 2010.
Let’s start the year with a tiny bit of fun nostalgia. Like old dairy bars and that ’90s icon, the Solo Jazz cup.
Lafayette, Louisiana is home to a real Borden Ice Cream Shoppe — the last one. And it is everything.
Those floors. That ceiling.
chocolate, choc swirl, choc chip, rocky road, walnut, vanilla, cherry vanilla, strawberry, praline, mint chip, butter pecan, cookies & cream…
All the ’90s college vibes with the Solo Jazz cup.
One of my best friends has a restaurant and I told them it would be so terrific if they could carry Solo Jazz like our college days. They agreed and called their US Foods guy (this is what friends do. When you nerd out on a cup, they call somebody and make it happen). The US Foods guy came back with a huge carton of these cups below without saying anything…like this 😂😂😂 complete imposter Dart 20J16E J Cup in purple Impulse design, absolute atrocity, would pass for the perfection that is a Solo Jazz RP16P-00055 🤣🤣🤣 .
I just know my friend called the US Foods guy and it started something like “hey, I know you thought this was no big deal, and I know this sounds crazy, but…”
One day let’s get together and put on an exhibit of hand-lettered signs/images from dairy bars and hamburger/hot dog stands. I submit for your viewing pleasure the collection at the Tasty Dip of Heflin, Alabama:
And yes, of course my favorite:
which, haaaa, I think is the, or cousin to the Solo No. 77SE “Silhouette Design” from 1977
Real question: Is it possible to look at this picture of a grape snow cone and not sing Chattahoochee lyrics?
In Lanett, Alabama, there’s a dollhouse built over the monument for Little Nadine Earles, who passed away in 1933.
When she was four years old, she asked her parents for a doll house for Christmas. Her father started on it, but she became sick with diphtheria, and then pneumonia. Her parents gave her a tea set and life-size doll before the holiday, hoping it would help make her feel better, but she just wanted the doll house, and told her daddy, “me want it now.” She passed away December 18th, before he had it completed. After she was gone, her father hired a contractor to build it at the cemetery. Inside are several dolls, a little toy tea set…
The stone reads:
‘Our Darling Little Girl
Sweetest In The World
April 3, 1929
December 18, 1933
Little Nadine Earles
In Heaven We Hope To Meet
Me Want It Now’
Below is a photograph inside the dollhouse that shows her friends that came by for her next birthday. The pic is inscribed “Little Nadine Earles Birthday Party” and the date. So sad!
People still leave notes:
Her parents are buried outside the dollhouse, and Nadine’s brothers have deeded the area to the city of Lanett.
There are four other cemetery dollhouses like this that I’m aware of: one in Tennessee, one in Ohio, and two in Indiana.
Actually, after my latest graveshelter post, not a dollhouse structure per se, but reader Wanda (thank you again!) sent me this clip of a cemetery in Florence, Alabama, where things were left in a protected monument for a little girl:
…and that reminds me of the grave of Florence Irene Ford in Natchez, who died in 1871 at the age of 10.
From the city’s site:
Upon her death her mother was so struck with grief that she had Florence’s casket constructed with a glass window at the child’s head. The grave was dug to provide an area, the same depth of the coffin, at the child’s head, but this area had steps that would allow the mother to descend to her daughter’s level so she could comfort Florence during storms. To shelter the mother during storms, hinged metal trap doors were installed over the area the mother would occupy while at her child’s grave.
…you can see the trap doors behind little Florence’s tombstone, which covers the stairway her mother used. They can still be opened today.