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April 24th, 2006


I am not dead. However, my Internet connection at home appears to be. Cox has been "working on it" since Wednesday. As they've also been "working on" getting us an expanded channel package for more than a month now, but have only managed to increase our plan from basic to digital basic, I am not optimistic. They were incompetent before the storm, but their incompetence has now taken on a life of its own, bought a house in the suburbs, and started raising a family. Unfortunately, since the whole TV/Internet package belongs to our landlord, not us, there's no way I can turn to a different company.

It's getting very old, though. I don't miss the idiocy of the Internet, and I'm reading more than usual, but I miss my LJ friends and need my eBay income. I know I should have come to the coffeeshop sooner -- it's only a ten-minute walk, and people have started calling to make sure I didn't take all the -pams -- but Christ on a little pink sidecar, how I hate this place. I just heard one of the uber-cool counter people insult several thousand people (not to their faces, of course) by using the term "Chalmettairie." Yes, all suburbs are exactly the same, as are the people who live there, and you're soooooooo much cooler because you have a dead-end job making lattes on Magazine Street.

Besides, making fun of Chalmette at this point really should cause a bolt to descend from heaven and strike you dead.

Fucking cool people. God, how I hate 'em.

Not much other news. The roofers put a nail through the freon line of our air conditioning on Friday night, so we are hot as well as Internet-less. Though temperatures have been in the high 80s/low 90s, this isn't as uncomfortable as you might think; the house was built to stay cool, with thick walls and high ceilings. With the windows open and the fans going, it's not at all bad. The cats think it's great; they've never hesitated to let me know that I keep the apartment too cold. I work on Waiting For Bobby Hebert, which is going to overshoot its deadline by a couple of weeks and is probably going to end up with a different title. I read thrillers from the drugstore paperback racks, for which I have developed an insatiable appetite (seven in the past six days). I get this craving every year when the weather turns hot, and fortunately there is always a new crop to satisfy it. Mostly I can't remember which killer went with which story, but the convoluted machinations feed something in me, and every once in a while a really fine writer turns up (Michael Connelly, Jonathan Kellerman). And Pete made Marisol food at Bacchanal last night -- I had stuffed pork belly with blackberry habanero sauce, duck confit with mee krob noodles, and a BBQ lamb kim chee bowl -- so that was a brief but welcome diversion.

I suppose that's all for now. Assuming an Internet miracle fails to happen, I'll try not to let another week pass before checking back in here, but did I mention that I really hate this coffeeshop?



The Internet is alive! I'm sure it won't last, so must spend what time I have looking up information about Lakefront Airport, which I forgot to do at the coffeeshop. For the moment, though, this tidbit --

From a local Internet dining board, describing a dish from a North Shore restaurant called Juniper:

POSTER A: Can someoone describe what this appetizer is?

3 grilled U-12 shrimp and blackened aged soft brie served with a blueberry compote and spicy creole remoulade

POSTER B: the brie is blackened with seasonings and put on a flat top. it is set on top of a blueberry compote with 3 grilled jumbo shrimp (u-12 is the metric system for 12 shrimp to a pound) the creole remoulade is drizzeled on top and served with some toasties. the appetizer is fabulous! it may sound off the wall but after this you will not want brie any other way. this is the great thing about juniper. everything comes together so nice to please any palate.

From chapter 5 of Soul Kitchen:

"Look, if you don't want the job, I guess I'll put an ad in the paper. Hire some twenty-two-year-old hotshot with a culinary degree from Delgado. Next thing you know we'll be serving coconut shrimp with Brie and blueberry sauce."

Goddammit. It seems I cannot invent a single silly, incoherent dish that isn't promptly produced by some local chef before the novel has even been published. Nobody except Chris ever reproduces my good dishes.

I wish I'd thought of the remoulade sauce, though. That makes it ever so much worse.

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