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11 NO. 1
contents JACOB FULLER
8 Lewis Wins Round 2 See what happens when Hinds County supervisors try to slash the sheriff ’s department’s budget. QUAIL RIDGE PRESS
Cover photograph of cracked lake bed, file photo
England cites the Mississippi Museum of Art as an example. It hosts a multitude of programs like “Music in the City”—the Oct. 9 program is a recital featuring mezzo soprano Viola Dacus—and “Unburied Treasures” featuring art by Mississippian William Hollingsworth Oct. 16. Her hope is that more people will start coming to these culturally enlightening events. “There is nothing better than a community that has a personal relationship with its arts,” she says with assurance. “Especially a place like Mississippi. Everybody should be able to experience that.” The museum already has an established older membership, but England believes it is important to have youthful participation as well. She is currently revamping the membership program to appeal to both older and younger generations. While she could not give any details, she thinks the changes will be instrumental in bringing in the college crowd. England hopes to stay at the museum and broaden her role there. She wants everyone to experience the power of Mississippi art. This southern girl loves her state and its people. “The people around me inspire me,” she says. “This is a great community, and I would love to be here forever.” —Matthew Bolian
23 In Their Shoes Talamieka (pictured) and Charles Brice unveil an art exhibit inspired by his deployment to Afghanistan. KELLY BRYAN SMITH
It was during a summer art history class at Ole Miss that Allison England fell in love with Mississippi arts. Now, England, 27, is their resolute champion at the Mississippi Museum of Art, where she has worked for the past two years. “It was really a serendipitous thing,” she says, sitting in the art museum’s Palette Café. “I never planned to work for the museum; it just happened.” England joined the museum’s volunteer team, and shortly after, a part-time job as an accounting assistant became available. Now a full-time employee, England is the membership secretary, charged with getting more people connected with the museum. This Mississippi art advocate grew up in Starkville and visited the capital regularly. “Once a month, my family came down to Jackson to visit family, and I always visited the zoo,” she says with a smile. To this day, visiting the Jackson Zoo is still one of her favorite things to do. “The tapirs are my favorite animal,” she says, giggling. “They kind of just hang out in the mud.” Since moving to Jackson, England realized there is so much more to it than a great zoo. “When I was younger, downtown was never a place that we came, but now living in Jackson and living in Fondren, there is so much more than I ever realized. And there is always something happening in Jackson,” she says.
33 Snack Smart With little time to spare during the school year, plan ahead to provide kids with healthy, diverse food.
Gwen McKee set out to save a cookbook and in the process created a thriving publishing company. COURTESY TALAMIEKA BRICE
4 ............... Editor’s Note 4 ....................... Sorensen 6 ............................... Talk 6 .......... Week in Review 12 ..................... Business 14...................... Editorial 14 ...................Mike Day 15.....................Joe Atkins 16 ............... Cover Story 23 ................. Diversions 24 ........................... Film 26 ....................... 8 Days 28 ........................ Events 30........................... Music 32.......................... Sports 33 .... Life & Style/Food 37 ........ Health + Fitness 40 ..... Girl About Town 41 ..... Astrology/Puzzles 42 ..................... Fly/DIY
Cookin’ and Bookin’
Jacob D. Fuller Reporter Jacob Fuller is a former student at Ole Miss. When not reporting, he splits his time between playing music and photographing anything in sight. He covers the city for the JFP. He wrote and took photos for the cover story.
Matt Bolian Edititorial intern Matt Bolian is a full-time redhead, Christian, husband, Army officer and property developer (blackwhitedevelopment.com) who loves ultimate Frisbee, tacos, fruit smoothies and dreaming big. He wrote the Jacksonian
Kristin Brenemen Art Director Kristin Brenemen is an otaku with a penchant for dystopianism. If she can figure out the sewing machine, she has some mad plans for Halloween. She designed and laid out pages.
Kelly Bryan Smith Kelly Bryan Smith is a busy mom, writer, brain-tumor survivor and nursing student living with her small son in Fondren. She enjoys cooking, swimming, reading and collecting pastel blue eggs from her backyard chickens. She wrote a food feature.
Dr. Timothy Quinn Dr. Timothy Quinn is a family physician practicing in Ridgeland and holds an M.D. from Meharry Medical College in Nashville. He integrates lifestyle modification and education into his medical care. He wrote a wellness feature.
Jasmin Searcy Jasmin S. Searcy holds a bachelor’s in psychology, a master’s in clinical and community counseling from the Johns Hopkins University and is pursuing her doctorate in clinical psychology. She wrote a wellness feature.
Kathleen Mitchell Features Editor Kathleen Mitchell is an adopted Mississippian who attended Millsaps College. She lives in Fondren with a small fluffy cat, an absurdly large dog and a normal-sized husband. She wrote features for wellness, arts and DIY.
September 12 - 18, 2012
At the “Hindsonian” at Hinds Community College, Mike Day won top cartoonist awards from the Mississippi Press Association and the Columbia Scholastic Press Association in New York. He was also a cartoonist for the Hattiesburg American.
by Donna Ladd, Editor-in-Chief
An Inconvenient Joke
hen I heard Mitt Romney make fun of climate change during his convention speech to great laughter—“President Obama promised to slow the rise of the oceans and to heal the planet”—my mind immediately flashed back to Waveland, Miss., days after Hurricane Katrina hit. I stood on the town’s main street surrounded by piles of rubble as far as my eyes could see. I’ve always described what I saw as akin to “carpet bombing.” I can’t think of another way to describe the devastation. As Romney added the punchline, “My promise is to help you and your family,” I thought of the man I interviewed in Waveland whose mother had drowned in the rising ocean waters whipped up by the fierce warmth of a Gulf hurricane. I couldn’t believe Romney would joke about the effects of climate change, and certainly not at the very moment when Gulf Coast residents were trying to survive another hurricane-induced flood. During Katrina, George W. Bush was president, and we still lived in a time when too many Republicans called climate change a “hoax.” Big industry didn’t want to deal with any expense or regulation that might result from the need to keep the oceans from rising or overheating, or to avoid droughts that lead to wildfires, failed crops and higher food prices. There was so little focus on possible weather-related disasters that FEMA was little more than an ineffective agency run by political appointees, as we learned so tragically. Now, seven years later, even many Republicans are coming around to the dangers of climate change. If there is anything we now know here in Mississippi and in neighboring states, rising (or surging) oceans are nothing to belittle or use to score cheap political points. We also know that it is time to stop using weather change as a cheap political tool and start approaching it in a bipartisan way before we lose more of the Gulf Coast and beyond. Climate change is science. It’s fact. It’s real— even if it is inconvenient for some industries. So when Romney made that pitiful, distasteful joke, I thought a time machine had transported us backward to a time when politicians actually got away with making fun of “global warming.” We were again in a time before Katrina created the smells of death I experienced as I walked streets of Bay St. Louis and talked to people sitting in front of rubble because they had nowhere left to go. These were families, Mr. Romney, and they needed help then, and they need it now. I’m not just talking about a more effective FEMA, which we have now. (Isaac showed the difference in great detail.) We need the kinds of help that come from looking beyond your next political campaign and your donor base. Our country needs leaders who are willing to put political capital on the line to, yes, help American families reduce climate risks. How? Through a respect for science and scientists. Every time I hear a politician make fun of science because it doesn’t fit a talking
point—from climate change to “legitimate rape” not causing pregnancy—I think of bullies in a school ribbing the kids who actually study. The bullies are just thinking about looking cool; they only care about that moment. Politicians who make fun of science, likewise, are looking for cheap votes, regardless of what might happen in the future to prove them wrong. By then, with luck, they’ll have served their eight years and be enjoying retirement with a library in their name, so it won’t matter to them if they were wrong. Ask Bush. But too much is at stake to forsake science for short-term political gain. Beyond the disasters such an approach could hasten, there is the problem that we need more science and math education in our country. We can complain all we want about the lack of “good-paying jobs,” but the fact is that many companies cannot find Americans educated enough in science and math to fill those good-paying jobs. This is a failure of our leaders—both because they show such open contempt for good education in math and science, as well as contempt for the kinds of critical thinking that rigorous study helps create. Such critical thinking doesn’t always help them politically if those thinkers decide to actually start doing the arithmetic and learn more about how debt, deficit and financial systems actually work. Those savvy citizens might actually figure out that voodoo economic systems like trickledown economics, or “Reaganomics,” don’t deliver what the jokester politicians promise us. They simply do not add up. Ask Ronald Reagan—who loved to make fun of what he called “environment extremists” who “wouldn’t let you build a house unless it looked like a bird’s nest.” In opposing expansion of Redwood National Park and
other green efforts, Reagan said: “Trees cause more pollution than automobiles do.” And: “Approximately 80 percent of our air pollution stems from hydrocarbons released by vegetation, so let’s not go overboard in setting and enforcing tough emission standards from man-made sources.” And he cited a study that supposedly showed that “80 percent of air pollution comes not from chimneys and auto exhaust pipes, but from plants and trees.” In addition to his disrespect toward the environment, Reagan had a math problem. He first cut taxes in 1981—but then presided over massive spending (up 60 percent), passed the largest tax increase in history (raising taxes 11 times), lifted the debt ceiling 18 times, tripled the national debt and nearly doubled the federal deficit (compared to Jimmy Carter!)—all by a president who had promised to balance the budget and reduce spending. Oh, and the Tax Reform Act of 1986 raised tax rates on those earning under $30,000 while lowering marginal tax rates for the wealthy. Sound familiar? A major problem we face now is that many of the people who supported Reagan’s vision for the wealthy then, and the throwback trickle-down economics of Romney and Rep. Paul Ryan (he cites Reagan as an idol) now, don’t excel on these pivotal science and math questions. Ask yourself: Are you willing to believe the science community’s research on climate change? Do you want to use your math skills to figure out that someone who proposes massive tax cuts without revenue offsets might be using the wrong side of the calculator? Put another way, Mr. Romney: Actually helping families requires a healthy respect for both math and science—not someone who drowns in contempt for both.
Boy Scouts of America Four Man Scramble Golf Tournament Benefiting the Youth of the Andrew Jackson Council
Tuesday, September 25, 2012 Lake Caroline Golf Club â€˘ 118 Caroline Club Circle Madison, MS 39110 â€˘ 601-853-4023
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;.%5%.).'92%.3%13<).-%.3"%.%:3).' A@?>=?3(%1)2)2).% Enjoy a four course (sit down) dinner, different menu each night, and an award winning performance at Broadmeadow United Methodist Church 4419 Broadmeadow Dr. Jackson, MS Doors open at 6:30 pm / Dinner at 7:00pm Performance immediately following
Performance immediately following
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/.!3)/. CONTACT the Crisis Line is a 24/7 Crisis Hot Line that helps callers explore solutions for their problems, offers information and referral services and intervenes in emergencies: www.contactthecrisisline.org
news, culture & irreverence
Thursday, Sept. 6 The Mississippi Democratic Party names Madison attorney Vicki Slater, 3rd District, and Biloxiâ€™s Matthew Moore, 4th District, as candidates in the upcoming congressional races. ... The Democratic National Convention wraps up with President Barack Obamaâ€™s nomination acceptance speech in Charlotte, N.C. Friday, Sept. 7 Midtown Partners announces that residents will soon be able to move into 16 new energy-efficient townhouses in the neighborhood. ... Canada closes its embassy in Tehran and announces it is severing diplomatic ties with Iran, which it claims is providing military assistance to Syria. Saturday, Sept. 8 Ole Miss and Mississippi Stateâ€™s football teams win at home, both with scores of 28-10. Both teams move to 2-0 on the season. ... University of Louisiana-Monroe shocks the college football world when it defeats No. 8 Arkansas 34-31 in overtime. Sunday, Sept. 9 The New Orleans Saints lose their first game of the season against the Washington Redskins 40-32. ... Coldplay and Rihanna play in the closing ceremony of the largestever Paralympics Games, wrapping up a summer of sports in London.
September 12 - 18, 2012
Monday, Sept. 10 The Hinds County Board of Supervisors repeal cuts to Sheriff Tyrone Lewisâ€™ budget. ... Thousands of public-school teachers walk off the job in Chicagoâ€™s first teacherâ€™s strike in 25 years after union leaders announce that negotiations failed to resolve contract disputes.
Tuesday, Sept. 11 The Rankin County Board of Supervisors vote 4-1 to raise taxes hours after a public hearing where they voted unanimously not to do so. ... Moodyâ€™s Investor Services warns it will downgrade the U.S. credit rating from AAA to AA1 if Congress does negotiate a budget this legislative period. In August 2011, Standard & Poorâ€™s cut the U.S. rating from AAA to AA+. Get news updates at jfpdaily.com.
The Cookbook Ladies are a modern success story. p 12
Flood Control â€˜Kumbayaâ€™? by R.L. Nave
he two-dozen officials representing various government and civic agencies couldnâ€™t decide on which song was best suited for the signing of a document that enables work on a long-awaited floodcontrol project to begin in earnest. Gary Rhoads, the mayor of Flowood and president of the Rankin-Hinds Pearl River Flood and Drainage Control District, aka the Levee Board, suggested the group sing a chord or two of â€œKumbaya.â€? Socrates Garrett, a Jackson developer and Levee Board member, offered Sam Cookeâ€™s â€œA Change is Gonna Come.â€? Either song would have been apropos. Mondayâ€™s ceremonial signingâ€”Rhoads officially signed the document weeks agoâ€”of an agreement between the Levee Board and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers lets local officials move forward with developing a floodreduction plan. The Pearl River Vision Foundation, a not-for-profit association started by Jackson oil magnate John McGowan, will conduct the study on the Levee Boardâ€™s behalf as well as foot the bill. â€œTheyâ€™ve got the motivation and, evidently, the financial capability,â€? Rhoads said of PRVFâ€™s financing of the study. Without the agreement, the process could take three or fours years and cost twice as much, board attorney Keith Turner said.
Rhoads added that getting the agreement in place represents the end of three decades worth of worry over flooding along the Pearl River. In spring 1979, the river swelled 25 feet over flood stage, prompting a series of proposals over the years, including expanding the levees and the development of a lake system. The Corps and conservationists panned McGowanâ€™s initial two-lake vi- Levee Board members Flowood Mayor Gary Rhoads, developer sion that would offset Socrates Garrett and Jackson Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. are all singing construction costs the same tune, in support of a â€œOne Lakeâ€? flood-control plan. through real estate and other economicdevelopment activities, calling that plan envi- nation. Eventually, the Levee Board scrapped ronmentally damaging and cost prohibitive. â€œTwo Lakesâ€? in favor of a more modest 1,500The ensuing controversies around â€œTwo acre, six-mile-long single lake, starting at LakeLakes,â€? which included shouting matches land Drive and stretching south to Richland. and allegations of ethics violations, could Jackson Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. have earned Mississippiâ€™s capital-city area the called the occasion a big day for the region. reputation of hosting the most raucous floodFLOOD, see page 9 and-drainage-control district meetings in the
Wednesday, Sept. 5 Officials release Jackson Police Department Sgt. Richard McGahey on $15,000 bond after arresting him for bribery charges Tuesday. ... Costa Rica suffers remarkably little damage from a magnitude 7.6 earthquake that struck off its shore today.
In 2012 so far, the United States has experienced the hottest eight months of any year on record. During that period, 33 states reported record heat. In the Arctic, according to one calculation, the amount of ice that has disappeared since March is equal to the areas of Alaska and Canada SOURCE: CLIMATECENTRAL.ORG combined.
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â€œWeâ€™ve been, for many years, trying to push forward this notion of flood protection for our region, and this is a big step forward in that direction,â€? Johnson said after the meeting. Johnson, who had been skeptical about the McGowan groupâ€™s Two Lakes plan, added that his administration is 100 percent on board the One Lake idea, which also offers economic and recreational development potential for the city. Dallas Quinn, PRVFâ€™s spokesman, said that the organization plans to hold a public meeting within 90 days to solicit input on the project, which must comply with
the National Environmental Policy Act, or NEPA. In addition to taking public comments, NEPA requires that all flood-control alternativesâ€”including two-lake, levee and do-nothing plansâ€”be considered. McGowan said that any economicdevelopment efforts associated with the flood-control project would hinge on the findings of the environmental study, but added that he does not foresee the obstacles that held the project up this long being a problem going forward. â€œI think everybodyâ€™s together on this particular plan,â€? McGowan said. Email R.L. Nave at email@example.com. Comment at www.jfp.ms and read the JFPâ€™s past coverage at jfp.ms/pearlriver.
County Wonâ€™t Cut Sheriffâ€™s Budget by Jacob D. Fuller
crowd of a couple hundred people, including more than 60 sheriffâ€™s deputies, roared with applause when the Hinds County Board of Supervisors overturned a Sept. 4 decision to cut the Hinds JACOB D. FULLER
FLOOD, from page 6
JFP DAILY BUZZ by JFP Staff
September 12 - 18, 2012
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Hinds County Sheriff Tyrone Lewis received good news when the county Board of Supervisors voted 3-2 in favor of repealing a $2.5 million cut to Lewisâ€™ budget.
County Sheriff Departmentâ€™s budget. County supervisors called a special meeting Monday to discuss repealing the $2.5 million cut to the departmentâ€™s budget the board passed the previous week. Sheriff Tyrone Lewis said he did not order the dozens of officers to attend. They attended on their own, out of concern, he said. District 5 Supervisor Kenneth Stokes and District 4â€™s Phil Fisher supported the budget cut, which Stokes proposed to fund raises for all county employees, including those in the sheriffâ€™s department, and add to the countyâ€™s cash reserves. Lewis and the deputies left the boardâ€™s chambers immediately after the decision. He spoke to the deputies and the media outside the Sheriffâ€™s Department on South President Street. Repealing the cut was important to help keep the citizens of Hinds County safe, Lewis said. â€œYes, we need a raise, but we need a raise the right way, not at the sacrifice of your sons
and daughters walking to school being molested or attacked by individuals when they know that the budget has been cut for public safety,â€? Lewis told his deputies after the meeting. â€œNot at the risk of your mothers, your wives, your grandparents going to the grocery store to shop, and not able to go out and put their groceries in the car without feeling safe.â€? Fisher said the county has clear inequities in how it distributes payroll in more than one county department, which the board must address. â€œWeâ€™ve got people who just joined the county who are doing administrationâ€”secretariesâ€”making $52,000 a year, and weâ€™ve got jailers making $1,818 a month,â€? Fisher said. â€œWeâ€™ve got sheriffâ€™s investigators who are new coming in, making $3,600 a month, and ones whoâ€™ve been here for years making $2,500.â€? Fisher sited a crumbling infrastructure, among other issues, as a major reason the budget cut is needed. At the current rate, he said, the county will repave individual roads once every 125 years. â€œYou can see that our budget is strained beyond its capabilities,â€? Fisher said during the meeting. District 3 Supervisor Peggy Calhoun said the $500,000 Stokes proposed to put toward street resurfacing will only repave about 12 miles of roads. The negative effect of that money not going to the sheriffâ€™s department would far outweigh 12 miles of repaved roads, she said. The county has three avenues it can take to remedy its budget woes, Fisher said. First, it can raise taxes. Second, it can depend on economic development, a long-term step that will take years to generate revenue. Third, it can rearrange money within the budget. The third option is what he and Stokes were trying to do, Fisher said. County supervisors voted 3-2 in favor of the repeal. District 2 Supervisor Doug Anderson, who voted in support of the cut last week, voted in support of the repeal Monday. Contact Jacob D. Fuller at firstname.lastname@example.org. Comment at www.jfp.ms.
by Jacob D. Fuller
City to Audit Retro Metro Some Council members, including Ward 5 Councilman Charles Tillman, have raised questions of where developer Retro Metro has spent the funds from a $5.1 million bond it received for the project. “Business is business with me. If something seems like it’s missing, and nobody wants to discuss it and give you an answer, I’ve got a problem with that,” Tillman said after the council’s special meeting Sept. 10 at City Hall. The city has paid Retro Metro, headed by Socrates Garrett, Leroy Walker and Howard Catchings, $50,000 so far to upgrade communications wiring in the building. They will pay another $200,000 plus interest over five years for improvements. The $5.1 million bond was a private issue, though, Garrett said,
SEWERS TO COST CITY BIG
The Jackson City Council wants a full audit of Retro Metro before any city departments move into the former Belk building.
man and cultural services, water and sewer, and parks and recreation. Developer David Watkins recently cut his ties to Retro Metro and the project. He said he left that partnership to focus on the long-delayed Farish Street entertainment district, which his company, Watkins Development, is heading. Email Jacob D. Fuller at Jacob@ jacksonfreepress.com. Comment at www.jfp.ms.
by Jacob D. Fuller COURTESY JARO VACEK
he city of Jackson will soon have a sewer repair bill that could rival the city’s entire annual budget. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the state Department of Environment Quality have handed down a decree to the city that requires it to make major improvements to its water and sewer infrastructure to comply with the Clean Water Act. City Council President Tony Yarber said the Council is reviewing the proposed plan, which could cost between $200 million and $400 million over several years. The City Council’s water and sewer ad hoc committee is reviewing the consent decree and making sure the city can comply with it, Yarber said Monday after the council’s special meeting at City Hall. Yarber said the city is facing this decree now because of a lack of action by former city leaders. “It’s called neglect. It’s called ‘close my eyes and hope it goes away,’” Yarber said. “We’re talking about years, probably almost a generation’s worth of neglect. There’s a ton
and no public money is at stake as far as that funding goes. “I just want to know the answer that makes sure we’re don’t get the city in trouble and we’re good stewards of the taxpayers’ money,” Tillman said. Ward 4 Councilman Frank Bluntson didn’t want to move some departments into the building now and begin paying rent, not knowing when the others would be able to move in. “The way it’s been going, it could be six (or) seven more months before the others ones get in there,” Bluntson said. The project began last year, when the city agreed to rent the building from Retro Metro to house six city departments, including hu-
The city will soon have to begin what could amount to more than $200 million in sewer and water improvements to comply with the federal Clean Water Act.
of blame to go around, but we’re at a point now that blaming doesn’t pay the bill.” Chris Mims, the city’s communications director, said Jackson has been in negotiations with the EPA and DEQ for about two years on the decree, which will likely include the city paying a fine for violations of the Clean Water Act, which include sanitarysystem overflows, storm water getting into the sewage drainage and overloading the
water-treatment plant, lines bursting, and sewage overflowing into streets and yards. The city will likely have several years to complete the necessary improvements. Mims said the decree is not a result of neglect on the part of the city. “The city’s spent more than $100 million since 1997 on the wastewater system,” he said. “We’ve been making improvements all along, but we realize that this consent decree is going to probably be several hundred million (dollars) more.” The city will get no grants from the federal government to pay for the repairs. That burden lies solely with the city and with ratepayers. Mims said Mayor Harvey Johnson Jr. and the City Council are going to seek every avenue for funding available to minimize the effect on taxpayers. Those avenues include the state water-pollution-control revolving-loan program, which is funded, in part, by the state and federal governments and comes through the DEQ. The city must pay the loans back at an agreed-upon interest rate at or below market rates.
Mayor Johnson said the city will assess how it can pay off any loans before they take them out. He said the city is already borrowing $23 million this year for wastewater system repairs. To fund the additional, necessary improvements, the city will also look into bond issues and a sales-tax increase, which the city has sought from the Mississippi Legislature for at least two years. Both years, lawmakers failed to pass the bills. “Hopefully, we’ll be able to work with the Legislature this year and possibly get the local-option sales tax to a state that will be amenable to the city,” Mims said. In April, the city of Memphis, Tenn., signed a similar decree with the EPA. It included $1.29 million in fines and an estimated $250 million in improvements. In 2011, the EPA lodged a consent decree with St. Louis, Mo., for violations. The estimated cost of that city’s repairs was $4.7 billion over 23 years. Email Jacob D. Fuller at jacob@ jacksonfreepress.com. Comment at www.jfp.ms.
he Jackson City Council is asking for a complete audit of the Metrocenter Mall project before it clears any city departments to move into the former Belk building. City administration put the relocation of four city departments to the former Belk building on the City Council’s agenda for the Sept. 4 regular meeting, but Council members chose to pull the item until they could get someone to complete a full audit of the project. Council President Tony Yarber said the Council will meet Thursday to decide whether to use a private auditing firm, the city’s internal auditor or request a state auditor to lead the process. If they choose to go with a private auditing firm, the city will bid out the job.
by R.L. Nave
Isaac Churns Up Oil, Questions COURTESY LOUISIANA ARMY NATIONAL GUARD
Hurricane Isaac disturbed oil from the 2010 BP disaster, washed up on Gulf beaches.
A Think Locally. We do.
September 12 - 18, 2012
United Way of the Capital Area
United Way focuses on Education, Income, and Health to help families in Hinds, Madison, and Rankin counties.
Go to www.MyUnitedWay.com to see how you 10 can help.
s Isaac, a tropical storm that sped up to hurricane strength when it made landfall, approached southeastern Louisiana, it was a forgone conclusion that the storm would unearth toxic remnants of the 2010 BP oil disaster. But a picture of the extent Isaac’s environmental implications is starting to emerge. After Isaac passed, the U.S. Coast Guard’s National Response Center received some 90 reports across the Gulf Coast states, ranging from sightings of tar balls, oil slicks and spills. Through tests, researchers at Louisiana State University confirmed last week that oil that washed ashore on Elmer’s Island and Grand Isle matched samples from the BP Macondo well that malfunctioned two years ago, spewing millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf. In Mississippi, post-Isaac reports included a sheen of unknown sources near Ship Island and approximately 50 half-dollar-sized tar balls per square meter washing up on Ship Island Sept. 4, and sightings of other oil sheens near Bay St. Louis and Pass Christian Sept. 2 and Sept. 5, respectively. Also, on Aug. 31, the day Isaac officially made landfall as a Category 1 hurricane, three fishing boats overturned in at a marina near Bay St. Louis, discharging about 30 gallons of diesel fuel into the water “Proper planning and equipment go a long way to prevent industrial accidents, but these disturbing reports of oil sheens, overturned tanks, and chemical releases following Isaac show that industry is illprepared and ill-equipped to handle these storms,” said Jill Mastrototaro, Sierra Club Gulf Coast’s campaign director last week. Nearly 5 million barrels of oil glugged into the Gulf of Mexico after an April 2010 drilling rig malfunctioned and caught fire, killing 11 workers on Transocean’s Deepwater Horizon drilling vessel. The release went on for months as BP, the UK-based petrol giant, fecklessly sought ways to plug the leak one mile below the ocean’s surface. Eventually, officials applied 1.8 million gallons of a chemical dispersant called Corexit. Scientists disagree about the benefits of using oil dispersants such as Corexit. In
April 2012, researchers from the University of South Florida on behalf of the Surfrider Foundation completed a study that concluded Corexit inhibits microbial organisms from breaking down the hydrocarbons. The report also found that Corexit enables organic pollutants found in crude oil to remain level with that the National Institutes on Health and U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration consider carcinogenic. “It’s one of those nagging questions that we’re not investing enough in to answer. I’m afraid when the next hurricane comes along, we’re going to be wringing our hands over the same stupid questions,” said John Amos, president of Skytruth, a Shepherdstown, W.Va.-based environmental watchdog group, said about using chemical dispersants after oil spills. Amos added that it would be unfair to assume every reported spill after Isaac originates from the BP disaster, but Skytruth, which monitors and posts satellite images of reported oil spills worldwide, noticed more reports in the days following Isaac than on a normal day in the Gulf. “It’s going to be a continual housekeeping chore,” Amos said, referring to cleanup efforts. Comment at www.jfp.ms. Email R.L. Nave at email@example.com.
WORDS OF LAST WEEK Hot Poker Bounce Pat Robertson
sheriff sewer One Lake football weather
Mom-inChief arithmetic Depraved Heart
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by Dylan Irby and Molly Lehmuller
The Cookbook Ladies of Rankin County
DIRECTV is currently recruiting for the following position in Jackson: Site Manager If you are not able to access our website, DIRECTV.com, mail your resume and salary requirements to: DIRECTV, Attn: Talent Acquisition, 161 Inverness Drive West, Englewood, CO 80112. To apply online, visit: www.directv.com/careers. EOE.
September 12 - 18, 2012
First Friday of Each Month Free Spanish Class
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other southern states, eventually extending north and coast-to-coast, encompassing all 50 states in America. The â€œBest of the Bestâ€? QUAIL RIDGE PRESS
n 1978 Barney McKee, then director of the University Press of Mississippi, brought home a cookbook that he couldnâ€™t publish. That book was â€œThe Twelve Days of Christmas Cookbook,â€? and his wife, Gwen McKee, was enamored. She found the book too cute to let fall to the side and took up the challenge of publishing it herself. An English and journalism major, McKee has an affinity for writing, and she loved to cook, so it was a perfect fit. That was the beginning of the Quail Ridge Press, born on the McKeesâ€™ dining-room table on Quail Ridge Drive in Brandon. During her early years publishing, McKee found the fledging companyâ€™s biggest challenge was â€œhaving the confidence to believe that I could actually start and run a business. â€Ś (and) that I could talk people into buying my cookbooks,â€? she says. She would often second-guess herself when trying to sell a book to storesâ€”â€œYou donâ€™t really want this book, do you?â€? she asked of bookstore managers. As unsure as she was of whether she could do it, she got the first book out, and it was a success. After that first foray into publishing, the company got larger than she ever expected. After successfully publishing several cookbooks, McKeeâ€™s husband suggested doing a book that gathered all the best recipes from a state into one book, and McKee set out to do just that. She brought in her friend Barbara Moseley, and the two got to work on Mississippi. Their â€œBest of the Best of Mississippi Cookbook: Selected Recipes from Mississippiâ€™s Favorite Cookbooksâ€? (1982, $16.95) did fantasticallyâ€”McKee says it was â€œjust a huge success.â€? Today, it is still one of their best-selling books each year. A year later, Quail Ridge published â€œBest of the Best of Louisiana Cookbook: Selected Recipes from Louisianaâ€™s Favorite Cookbooksâ€? (1983, $16.95). That book was a resounding success, as well. After that, the twoâ€”known to their fans as â€œThe Cookbook Ladiesâ€?â€”decided to keep going to
The Cookbook Ladies are Gwen McKee (left), founder of the Quail Ridge Press in Brandon, and her friend and co-editor Barbara Moseley (right).
series includes regional books as well, such as those featuring the Deep South, Midwest and the Great Lakes regions. The company that started on a dining table is bigger than Gwen ever dreamed it could be. Ensuring the success of Quail Ridge is still hard work, McKee says, even as the company has grown. She praises her staff for easing the load, but she still oversees and helps in the process. A large part of any small businessâ€™ continuing success, she attests, is smart money management and growth and avoiding debt. â€œA lot of people want to expand real quickly. They feel like, â€˜Yeah weâ€™ve had a success, letâ€™s publish six cookbooks, instead of the one or two we did last year,â€™ and I think thatâ€™s risky,â€? she said. â€œWe didnâ€™t take a lot of big risks. We were conservative. â€Ś I would advise, if youâ€™re doing something well, keep
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doing it, and grow a little bit at a time.â€? The cookbook publishing process begins by finding someone who can write recipes. Sometimes Quail Ridge gets submissions from folks who have authored recipes and want to publish them. Then, the recipes go through editing and testing. The publishers want to know that every recipe actually makes a dish people will want to cook and eat. The design of the book, from the theme to the formatting and cover art, all has to be perfect, McKee says. Then Quail Ridge must complete marketing research to determine how many people might be interested, who and where they are, and let them know about the upcoming release. Finally, the book needs to be sold to stores, printed and shipped. Moseley and McKee oversee each step of the process and will step in when necessary. Book publishing may not be an easy job, but it is one McKee loves. Her love of cooking and writing motivate her to bring people the best cookbooks possible. However, the process of bringing specialty products to potential consumers is difficult, especially in marketing cookbooks. Each book is â€œalmost a gamble,â€? she says. â€œYouâ€™re gambling on how many people will want to buy this.â€? Still, she said, â€œYou have to have confidence in your product. You have to know that what you have will make somebodyâ€™s life better.â€? Quail Ridge Pressâ€™ beginnings and growth are a quintessentially American story of entrepreneurship. A woman with skills, passion, ideas, and plenty of support from friends and family was able to turn a homebased venture into a full-time job, and then into a successful business. And while McKee may be retiring soon, sheâ€™s sure that someone will pick up the reins of Quail Ridge to continue its tradition of publishing quality cookbooks for the whole countryâ€”from right here in Mississippi. For more information and the complete Quail Ridge Press catalog, visit quailridge.com.
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The United Auto Workers (UAW) would like to thank all the vendors who participated in the “Unity in the Community” event on Saturday, August 18, 2012, held in Canton, MS. This event was to benefit the boys and girls club in canton. Thank you to the following vendors: Kroger Food Store Ridgeland, MS Hamill’s Florist Canton, MS Michael’s Madison, MS Reddy Ice Jackson, MS Barnes & Noble Ridgeland, MS
MS Discount Drugs Canton, MS
Monroe’s Donuts Jackson, MS Malco Grandview Madison, MS
School Aid Ridgeland, MS
BP Gas Station Jackson, MS Fresh Market Ridgeland, MS
McAllister’s Canton, MS
Everlyn Cage Jackson, MS
UAW Local 974 East Peoria, IL UAW Local 22 Detroit, MI
Stein Mart Jackson, MS
Canton Discount Drugs Canton, MS
Discount Trophy Ridgeland, MS
Mariel’s Ridgeland, MS
B & B Grocery Canton, MS
Mt. Olive M.B. Church Bolton, MS
Oletha’s Ridgeland, MS
Crab’s Seafood Shack Ridgeland, MS Piggly Wiggly Canton, MS
13 JCV7210-18 Event Week September 10 JFPress 9.5x6.167.indd 1
9/10/12 11:09 AM
opining, grousing & pontificating
Time to Think Ahead
eople don’t plan to fail; they fail to plan. Anyone needing evidence of that adage’s truth needn’t look much further than Jackson’s decrepit, and worsening, infrastructure. Staring down the barrel of an Environmental Protection Agency consent decree, the city now faces the very real possibility of shelling out hundreds of millions of dollars to upgrade its sewer system. Think the EPA is playing around? Just ask St. Louis, Mo., which is spending nearly $5 billion to fix its sewer problems after getting a similar decree. Mind you, whatever Jackson spends on the sewers will be on top of the $100 million the city has already spent since 1999. In other words, roughly $13 million per year went to making what amounts to Band-Aid fixes. As is always the case when infrastructure languishes, Jackson’s problems have accumulated over many years and many administrations. Consider the situation in Raymond at the Hinds County Detention Center, where the building is in such disrepair that the Hinds County Sheriff’s Office is having problems keeping the doors locked. For a period, escapes were so common that the situation would have been laughable if it were not so terrifying (see: the July 30 jail uprising). While the jail’s present condition resulted from decades worth of do-nothing neglect, the Hinds County Board of Supervisors has waffled in the past few months to correct them. First, the board called for a new jail. Then, it backtracked to make quick fixes in the meantime. That’s wise, but it doesn’t exactly instill confidence that there won’t be more problems. Unfortunately, when it comes infrastructure projects, it’s hard to know what success, or even progress, looks like. What has $100 million bought the city’s sewer and wastewater system? This week also saw what some people might consider a milestone, the signing of a document between the local Levee Board and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that could put breaking ground on a flood-reduction project for the city as little as 18 months away. If you’ve followed the coverage of flood control in the pages of this newspaper, you know how evenly we’ve distributed blame for holding up flood control for 30 years by stubbornly sticking to plans that were dead-on-arrival. Luckily, Jackson has escaped a second deluge on the scale of the 1979 Easter Flood—so far—that wreaked billions of dollars in damage when calculated in today’s money. The operative phrase here is: “so far.” Given the schizophrenic weather patterns that climate change induces, this year’s drought could just as easily be followed by a flood next year. What is clear is that it’s time to end the far-too-common practice of rolling the dice and hoping nothing bad happens. When those bets fail, we’ll all have to pay the price.
Get This Party Started
September 12 - 18, 2012
ongressman Smokey “Robinson” McBride: “Distinguished delegates of the Ghetto Science Community, welcome to the Ghettocratic Party’s Neighborhood Convention, Voter Registration Drive and Disco, held at the Clubb Chicken Wing Multi-Purpose Complex. “Now that the Republican and Democratic conventions are over, it’s time to motivate the masses to vote for the presidential candidate of their choice. Now is the time to help members of our community defeat and counteract the efforts of voter suppression. We must transform the unemployed deejay’s apathy into determination. Our senior and disabled citizens need clear and unobstructed paths to access voting booths. We must instill a sense of urgency in the spirits of young people to invest in their future by going to the polls. It’s time to convince and encourage our doubtful and cynical Ghetto Science Community members to move this nation forward through the power of ‘One Person, One Vote.’ “Already, I have assembled and organized a volunteer Ghetto Science Team Political Action Committee, aka Ghetto PAC, to achieve the goals of successful voter registration and participation. Brother Hustle and the Compensatory Investment Request Support Group will serve as our voter registration street team. They will hand out free, refreshing bottles of Juicy Juice on Ice to registered voters. Also, I have strategically placed voter registration centers at places such as Jojo’s Discount Dollar Store, Pork-N-Piggly Supermarkets and Mr. Habib’s Convenience Store. “Let get this party started quickly, and register folk to vote so that our 14 nation can move forward and step into tomorrow!”
Is ‘Getting By’ as Good as It Gets?
n the past month we’ve been through one hurricane, two national conventions and three weeks of preseason football. Here are a few of my casual observations: The Democrats know how to put on a better production than the Republicans do. But speeches don’t win elections. And the American Dream is either reality or fallacy depending on which side of the aisle you’re on. After listening to both sides talk about that “dream,” now is the time to ask ourselves: Is it tangible? And, can either party get us closer to it? Most of us are raised to believe that if we just work hard enough we can be successful. We’re told that instead of coveting another’s wealth, we should just “work,” and we too can have the house or car of our dreams. What’s more, if you haven’t gotten those things, it’s merely because you’ve been too lazy, right? Well, I know about work. I know folks who work their behinds off daily but are barely able to string two checks together. They pay their bills; they buy food; they are always only one missed paycheck away from the streets. They can’t buy their dream home or car, and they can’t take that family vacation. It’s not because they’ve splurged or taken on a mortgage they couldn’t pay. No. They’re stagnant simply because these days, their paychecks just don’t stretch far enough. Sure, the free-market system—that thing
called capitalism—is set up to make winners and losers. But do we want a country where the best you can look forward to is “just getting by”? You see, this isn’t a Democratic or Republican thing. This isn’t a black or white thing. This is a quality-of-life thing. This isn’t the time to let emotions, biases or prejudices cloud our judgment. The Republicans, at best, have questionable undertones to their message. The “taking back our heritage” shtick is scary. It sounds like the dominant culture having a tantrum because someone dares level the playing field. The Democrats put on a powerful production in Charlotte. But tear-jerking oratory to a supportive crowd doesn’t count in my book, either. It’s great, but don’t let emotion be your only guide. The presidential campaigns have been throwing a lot of information at you over the past months. Some you liked. Some you didn’t. Personally, at the end of the day, I’m just tired of seeing good people struggle. And in November, we need to be putting the guy in the White House that can help us regular folks enjoy a little play with our work. We don’t need a $750,000 show horse, but we’d like to go a month without having to make the choice between buying gas to get to work or buying groceries. And that’s the truth ... sho-nuff.
In the story “Raising Filmmakers” (Vol. 10, Issue 52), the writer incorrectly identified Ceili Hale as the director of the Blu August film team for the 48-Hour Film Project. Ceili was the production assistant. Kelly Buckholdt was the team leader of the Blu August team, E.J. Carter was the director of their 48-hour film “Turnaround” and Alec Martin was the assistant director, according to the film’s Facebook page. The Jackson Free Press apologizes for the error.
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XFORD – James Meredith’s new book, “A Mission from God,” (Simon & Schuster, 2012, $25) co-authored with William Doyle, sometimes reads like the opening confession in Fyodor Dostoevsky’s “Notes from Underground.” “I befuddle people,” Meredith admits. “People have an awfully hard time trying to figure me out.” Here’s more: “I’m not a team player. I am my own team.” “A lot of folks think I’m a real odd bird.” Like the unnamed narrator in Dostoevsky’s classic 19th century novel, Meredith confesses he’s a self-absorbed loner: “I am immortal. … I am a moment in history. … My ego is so enormous. … Someone once wisecracked that my name should be changed to ‘I, James Meredith.’” Meredith has baffled admirers and detractors much of his life, certainly since that day 50 years ago when he, the lone black man in a sea of white, entered the campus of the University of Mississippi and enrolled as a student. In his own words, the Attala County native is “a civil rights hero who absolutely hates to talk about civil rights,” a black man who rejects the term “African American,” a man who once joined the staff of the original modern-day GOP obstructionist, the late U.S. Sen. Jesse Helms of North Carolina (also known as “Senator No”). Meredith endorsed Mississippi segregationist Ross Barnett’s gubernatorial bid in 1967 and former Ku Klux Klan leader David Duke’s bid for Louisiana governor in 1991. Meredith’s career after his dramatic showdown at Ole Miss has been a series of fits and starts: abortive runs for Congress and other offices, including president of the United States; a mixed record of business ventures; a law degree from Columbia University although he never took the bar exam nor practiced law. When I first met James Meredith in Jackson back in the early 1980s, he had just founded what he called the Reunification Church, which he believed would help him fulfill his “divine responsibility assigned by God,” revealed in a “series of dreams,” and “use my life for the betterment of my people and mankind.” The church turned out to be a dream that never quite worked out. Today, nearing 80, he admits he has one great regret: “I have not done nearly enough to help America’s poor, and especially its poorest black citizens.” As for communicating his ideas of “triumphant American citizenship, black advancement and black self-transformation” effectively to others, “I have failed completely,” so far. He always set his sights high, and he al-
ways had a strong sense of self. When the mob at Ole Miss crowded close to him in 1962, shouting epithets and threats, he said his view of himself was this: “I am a Zen samurai. I am invincible. Nothing can harm me.” After all, he had come back to Mississippi after years in the U.S. Air Force to declare war on racism at “the holiest temple of white supremacy in America”: Ole Miss. A man who eschewed Martin Luther King Jr.’s philosophy of nonviolence, Meredith “believed in overwhelming physical force and the threat of organized violence, legally applied by the federal government” as the only means to defeat the Jim Crow South. Meredith writes of beginning his lonely 220mile “March Against Fear” from Memphis to Jackson in 1966, saying, “I could feel the spiritual presence of my late father walking beside me, and along with him were no less than Jesus Christ and the Founding Fathers of America. There was George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Frederick Douglass, along with my African and Indian royal ancestors.” He would be shot on the second day of that journey. Today, when I walk the tree-lined pathways of the beautiful campus of Ole Miss, I see what James Meredith helped accomplish here. I see students of all races burrowing in their books, hurrying to their classrooms, laughing outside the Student Union. What Meredith did not only changed a university, but also a state and a nation. He admits he has always been “a loner among blacks as well as whites.” He would never be the leader on the steps of a great memorial preaching to the multitudes, never the congressman negotiating compromises over thick stacks of legislation, certainly never the civil-rights leader-turned-media celebrity. He would and will always be that lonely figure, a mystic and a mystery, who stepped onto the stage at a critical moment, braving more than his share of what Shakespeare called the “slings and arrows,” showing unimaginable courage and fortitude, enough to override those baffling moments since then. That includes even now as he rejects the statue of him on the campus he integrated as a “false idol” that “must be destroyed and ground to dust.” One key to the James Meredith mystery that’s never been much discussed is provided in his book: his love for Mississippi. He left it many times, but he kept coming back. “Mississippi is mine. And one must love what is his,” he writes. “I love Mississippi like a bee loves honey.” That’s a profound statement from someone whose love hasn’t always been requited.
What Meredith did not only changed a university, but also a state and a nation.
8:30 a.m. A Service of Word and Table 9:30 a.m. Sunday School for all ages 11:00 a.m. Worship Service Live Streaming at www.gallowayumc.org Televised on WAPT Children’s Church Ages 4-Kindegarten Nursery Available Ages 6 weeks-3 years
305 North Congress Street Jackson, MS 601-353-9691 English 601-362-3464 Spanish www.gallowayumc.org
m o d g n i K ome amp C ting Mee
Celebrate our great Camp Meeting heritage Bluegrass musicians
Bill & Temperance & Jeff Come sing old favorites! U Bring all your friends. U
Join us for Sunday Dinner.
Sunday, September 16 10:30am service Sunday Dinner for everyone follows the service.
United Methodist Church 4419 Broadmeadow Dr / Jackson 601-366-1403
EDITORIAL News Editor Ronni Mott Features Editor Kathleen Morrison Mitchell Reporters Jacob Fuller, R.L. Nave Events Editor Latasha Willis Deputy Editor Briana Robinson Copy Editor Dustin CardonMusic Listings Editor Natalie Long Fashion Stylist Meredith Sullivan Writers Torsheta Bowen, Quita Bride, Marika Cackett, Richard Coupe,Tam Curley, Scott Dennis, Jim Pathfinder Ewing, Bryan Flynn, Diandra Hosey, Pamela Hosey, Robyn Jackson, Garrad Lee, Genevieve Legacy, Amanda Michaud, Jessica Mizell, Anita Modak-Truran, Larry Morrisey, Robin O’Bryant, Eddie Outlaw, Casey Purvis, Debbie Raddin, Julie Skipper, Kelly Bryan Smith Editorial Interns Elyane Alexander, Matthew Bolian Piko Ewoodzie,Whitney Menogan, Sam Suttle Victoria Sherwood, Dylan Watson Consulting Editor JoAnne Prichard Morris
‘Mississippi is Mine’
Editor-in-Chief Donna Ladd Publisher Todd Stauffer
Revealing Heaven On Earth
8/31/12 2:28 PM
The Water Also Rises
In the Ecological Balance between Droughts and Floods, Where do Mississippi Farmers— and Consumer Prices—Stand?
September 12- 18, 2012
story and photos by Jacob D. Fuller
he office of Gaddis Farms sits in a metal building just beyond the post office from the half-dozen or so shops and the police station on Madison Street in the rural town of Bolton. Half the building serves as the offices of one of Hinds County’s oldest and largest farms. The other half houses a John Deere heavy equipment and tractor retailer. Ted Kendall IV, a fifth-generation farmer, is the man in charge. This time of year, though, he’s usually not in the office. He’s in one of the many fields his family has owned and operated since 1897 in the town about 13 miles west of Jackson on Interstate 20. It’s corn harvesting time in late August, and this year, more than ever before, that means Kendall needs to be in the field. Never before have the golden ears meant so much money to be made.
He took time out of his busy harvest season to talk with the Jackson Free Press the afternoon of Aug. 24. We met in his modest office, complete with family photos and an impressive eight-point whitetail buck mounted on the wall. Across much of the Midwest, farmers have experienced a summer hotter and drier than any they’ve seen. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Palmer Drought Index shows that 57 percent of the contiguous United States was under moderate to extreme drought at the end of July. That’s the highest percentage since December 1956, when 58 percent of the contiguous states were in drought. This summer, much of the region’s cash crop, corn, died during the long, dry heat wave. In Mississippi, crop farmers are feeling the drought as well, but not in the fields. With the exception of
parts of the northern Delta, the state hasn’t experienced drought conditions much, if at all, this summer. Plenty of rain has fallen to feed the thirsty corn. So much so, in fact, that Kendall said it has been an improvement from the previous two summers. “We’ve had a very good growing season,” Kendall said, sitting in the desk chair in his beige-walled office. “It was hot and dry in June, but we get accustomed to that. Then we started getting rains in July that really made our crop.” With much of the product in the country’s largest corn-growing region dead, corn prices are at an all-time high, running about $8 a bushel, up from $6 a bushel last year, said Robert Mashburn, who runs Bolton-based Triple R Farms along with his partner, Richard Mellon. While farmers in the state will take in record profits, the drought in the Midwest is going to raise the price of
WATER the Midwest farmers’ losses, but it’s not grocery shoppers. Poultry and cattle farmers need corn to feed their animals. Though they may buy most or all of their feed supply from inside the state, they still have to pay the record prices for feed crops the drought has created. “From a corn and soybean stand-
Ted Kendall IV explains how his combines pick and strip eight rows of corn from the cob at a time in one of his numerous fields in Bolton.Thanks to ample rainfall in central Mississippi and widespread drought in the midwestern United States, Kendall is selling his golden crop for record-high prices this year.
you’ll see farm employees driving massive combines. The giant machines cut, shuck and strip eight rows of corn off the cobs at a time and hold up to 300 bushels. When they are done, nothing is left in the field but broken stalks, dried-up husks and dark-brown, empty cobs. When the combines are full, workers load the corn into the trailer of a semi-truck along one of the narrow, bumpy roads in western Hinds County that few travel other than farmers and hunters. Then the combines return to the field to bring in more corn— and more money. Farmers like Kendall, who runs Gaddis Farms with two family members: his father Ted Kendall III and Kendall Garraway, his cousin, will harvest corn in August and early September. For some farmers, that is when all the work pays off. Those who have waited until harvest time to sell their crops can now take full advantage of the market, which requires massive amounts of corn and has suddenly lost many major suppliers. Others, however, worked out deals with buyers earlier in the year, before the drought destroyed large portions of the crops across the Midwest. Long-Term Problems Consumers will see price increases at the grocery store, but not just in the numerous corn-based products on the shelves. Most of Kendall’s corn stays in the state. His largest buyers are a group who are feeling the equal-and-opposite reaction of
point, I think primarily what you’re looking at is increasing the cost of animal feed,” Kendall said. “Most of it goes to raising cattle, chicken (and) hogs. So it’s certainly going to increase the cost in production for livestock.” To add to the cattle and poultry industries’ troubles, meat prices have dropped drastically during the drought. As farmers began seeing the drought killing crops across the Midwest, they realized feed prices were about to make keeping cattle and poultry through the winter a much-less profitable endeavor. So they began selling off their cows, chickens and pigs, and they flooded the market. With the sudden increase in supply, demand couldn’t keep up and the prices fell. While that lowered the short-term cost of meat during the spring and summer, it also lowered the long-term supply, and thus will raise the price of meat over the next couple of years. The U.S. Department of Agriculture predicts the price of beef and veal to rise as much as 4.5 percent this year, and as much as 5 percent in 2013. Pork products could jump up 3 percent by the end of this year, and another 0.5 percent next year. Cattle farmers in Mississippi have an advantage over many other states. They have ample grazing land with plenty of grass to feed their cows during the spring, summer and into the fall. When winter comes, however, ranchers have to turn elsewhere for feed.
Kendall is also a cattle farmer. He said he has not yet felt the hit of the higher grain prices there, but expects to this winter. “We don’t purchase much feed in the summer in the cattle business,” Kendall said. “We rely on grass. For the winter—for our protein and energy—we’ll start purchasing things.” It may seem fortunate that he has ample amounts of cottonseed and corn growing in his own fields. He said, though, that he depends on selling most of his crops, not keeping it in house. Poultry and pig farmers in the state are already feeling the effect of the higher grain prices, Kendall said. They need the corn year-round to feed the animals. The feed is more expensive than ever, and it’s only going up. Ranchers commonly use cottonseed and hay to feed their cattle during the winter months. Unlike corn, cotton is not widely grown in the Midwest and the supply has not been heavily affected by the drought. It has, however, met an enemy in Isaac. Then the Rain Came Beginning Aug. 28, the outlook for state agriculture, especially cotton farmers, took a turn for the worst. Isaac, a tropical storm that began in the Atlantic Ocean, had become a Category 1 hurricane by the time it made landfall late that Tuesday night near New Orleans. The storm then seemed to stand almost still, crawling north at 6 to 8 miles per hour. All the while, Isaac was dumping as much as 20 to 30 inches of rain on areas of the Gulf Coast. The early assessment shows the state’s biggest farm losses from Isaac will come in its cotton crop. One of the final stages before farmers harvest cotton is the boll, or flower, of the plant opening, which exposes the delicate white fibers and seeds of the cotton. During this stage, excessive water can be devastating to the quality and yield of the harvest. “Once the cotton is open, it only gets worse when it rains on it, or it stays out there a long time,” said Garraway, the vice president of Gaddis Farms. “The quality factor goes down almost every time it rains.” The problem with assessing the effects of Isaac is that farmers won’t know the full damage to cotton quality until after the harvest. Most cotton farmers harvest beginning the second week of September and are finished by the second week of November. “The earlier the cotton (was planted), the worse,” Garraway said. “I would think it had a pretty detrimental effect, especially on the earlier cotton. I don’t know whether that’s 10 percent—I don’t know. It’s certainly not the whole crop, but it’s going to affect the yield some.” Deputy commissioner of the state De-
more WATER, page 19
everything we consume, Mashburn said. Basic supply and demand, and the forces of a summer without rain, means the farmers like Kendall and Mashburn, with live crops and full harvests, stand to make a profit they’ve never seen when the corn leaves the field and heads to the buyers. Drive past Gaddis Farms’ headquarters and into the fields this time of year, and
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WATER, from page 17
partment of Agriculture and Commerce Andy Prosser doesn’t expect Isaac’s affect on the state’s farmers to translate to higher prices in the stores. Farmers had already harvested most of their corn and rice in the state before the storm arrived. He doesn’t expect the rain to seriously damage soy crops, either. “Keep in mind, in terms of the whole United States and the world market, Mis-
sissippi plays a very small roll in terms of the overall supply. So I don’t think Hurricane Isaac will affect overall food costs,” Prosser said. During the worst of the story, some dairy and chicken farmers lost power in the state’s six southern-most counties—Hancock, Harrison, Jackson, Pearl River, Stone and George—and parts of southwestern Mississippi. Prosser said that loss of power
meant a loss of milk for dairy farmers. “You have to milk cows every day, and if you can’t keep your milk cold, you’re eventually going to have to pour that out,” Prosser told the JFP. “We did have some dairy farms that weren’t able to keep their milk cold due to loss of power.” The problem for poultry farmers came after Isaac passed and typical late summer heat set in, without electricity to provide
ventilation for the birds. “Most of the temperatures after Isaac were still very high. So you had some poultry farms lose some chickens in the houses,” Prosser said. The losses were not large-scale, Prosser said, largely because most of the farmers had more WATER, page 20
Climate Change: Real or Not? by Ronni Mott
n 2008—back when President Barack Obama was science is highly uncertain. … This is not the case.” “This analysis shows that scientists publishing in the a candidate—then-Sen. Obama promised to take In “The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change,” peer-reviewed literature agree with IPCC, the National on global warming. After a bruising, losing fight in Oreskes cites reports from the Intergovernmental Panel Academy of Sciences, and the public statements of their Congress of proposed cap-and-trade legislation that on Climate Change, an organization formed in 1988 by professional societies. Politicians, economists, journalists, would have forced greenhouse gas emitters to pay for the World Meteoriological Organization and the United and others may have the impression of confusion, disagreetheir polluting ways, Obama seemed to put the issue on Nations Environmental Programme. ment, or discord among climate scientists, but that impresthe back burner. “IPCC’s purpose is to evaluate the state of climate sion is incorrect.” The subject’s stove-top position shifted again when science as a basis for informed policy action, primarily In 2005, National Science Academies (including the presidential hopeful Mitt Romney revived it during his on the basis of peer-reviewed and published scientific United States) from 11 countries, signed the “Joint science acceptance speech at the Republican Nationacademies’ statement: Global response to clial Convention. “President Obama promised mate change.” The scientists left no doubt as to begin to slow the rise of the oceans and to their conclusions. heal the planet,” Romney said, prompting “[T]here is now strong evidence that ripples of laughter among the delegates. “My significant global warming is occurring,” promise is to help you and your family.” they wrote. “The evidence comes from Obama wasn’t shy when he responded direct measurements of rising surface air to the jibe just a few days later during his temperatures and subsurface ocean temown acceptance speech. peratures and from phenomena such as “Yes, my plan will continue to reduce the increases in average global sea levels, recarbon pollution that is heating our planet, treating glaciers, and changes to many because climate change is not a hoax,” the physical and biological systems. It is likely president said emphatically. “More droughts that most of the warming in recent decades and floods and wildfires are not a joke. They’re can be attributed to human activities. This a threat to our children’s future. And in this warming has already led to changes in the election, you can do something about it.” Earth’s climate.” The party platforms back up the candiThe bottom line is that the scientists dates: “We know that global climate change all agree that climate change is real and that is one of the biggest threats of this generait is caused by human activities. One need tion—an economic, environmental and nanot look farther than the harsh and violent tional security catastrophe in the making,” weather patterns of the past year to see the the Democratic platform states. devastation such changes can bring to the Republicans, however, aren’t on board: planet. More than 60 percent of the contigu“Science allows us to weigh the costs and ous United States is suffering from drought, benefits of a policy so that we can prudentreports New Scientist magazine, along with ly deal with our resources,” the platform Mississippi farmers had little to complain about come corn-harvesting season parts of India and Eastern Europe. “In the states. “This is especially important when this year. Fields like this one produced well, unlike those that suffered through the Arctic, sea ice cover is at a record low, and the causes and long-range effects of a phe- widespread drought in the midwestern United States. the Greenland ice sheet shows what the U.S. nomenon are uncertain.” National Snow and Ice Data Center calls ‘exNot surprisingly, American politicians disagree on literature,” she writes. “IPCC states unequivocally that traordinary high melting,’” the authors write. “Global land an issue. the consensus of scientific opinion is that Earth’s climate temperatures for May and June were the hottest since reIn the long run, it is the opinion of scientists, not is being affected by human activities: ‘Human activi- cords began in the 19th century.” politicians, that is important. The overwhelming majori- ties … are modifying the concentration of atmospheric In the story, “With El Nino On the Way, Next Year ty of the world’s scientific community clearly sees anthro- constituents … that absorb or scatter radiant energy. … Will Break Heat Records,” republished in Slate magazine, pogenic (caused by humans) climate change as a serious [M]ost of the observed warming over the last 50 years authors explain why variables in temperature are not eviecological problem. The only question is: How much? is likely to have been due to the increase in greenhouse dence that anthropogenic climate change is not occurThe agreement of the scientific community dates back at gas concentrations.’” ring. The authors conclude: “The signal of global warmleast decade and continues to gain strength. Oreskes reviewed 928 scientific papers published in ing caused by humans is very clear, despite attempts by Writing in the journal Science in December 2004, “refereed scientific journals between 1993 and 2003” to certain parties to drown it out with a lot of noise.” Naomi Oreskes wrote: “Policy-makers and the media, par- find dissenting opinions. “Remarkably, none of the paEmail Ronni Mott at email@example.com. ticularly in the United States, frequently assert that climate pers disagreed with the consensus opinion,” she wrote. Comment at www.jfp.ms.
WATER, from page 19 When the Drought Does Come Though relatively untouched by this yearâ€™s dry spell, Mississippi is not immune to drought conditions. During a major drought in 1988, the state Department of Environmental Quality issued orders to Delta farmers to stop drawing water for irrigation from area streams. Not likTo Market, or Not ing the DEQâ€˜s approach to the problem, supervisors in In addition to the damage from 17 counties in the Delta region decided the rain, the drought has Kendall wonthey needed a publicly supported, nondering how heâ€™ll ship the cotton crop regulatory agency to decide what to do he does yield. Once the crop is picked, in such situations. spun, deseeded and bailed, Kendall and In July 1989, 17 Delta counties crehis team load the cotton on trucks and ated the Yazoo Mississippi Delta Joint ship it to Vicksburg, where they load it Water Management District, known on ships headed for clothing manufacas YMD. Property taxes in the counturers in Asia. ties fund the program, which works The lack of rainfall on the northto find new and more effective ways to ern section of the Mississippi River has irrigate the Deltaâ€™s farmland and safetranslated into water levels so low that guard against future drought, without travel along the river here in the South the DEQâ€™s regulatory approach. is limited. Water levels in Americaâ€™s Dean Pennington, a former irlargest river are so low, in fact, that the rigation researcher at the University of U.S. Coast Guard had to shut down Arizona and Mississippi State University, part of the river to traffic after a barge has been the executive director of YMD ran aground Aug. 22. since January 1990. He said farmers in The Army National Guard has the Delta are using some new approachbeen dredging the river, a process that es to cut water usage and maximize the involved large mechanical dredgers that output on their land. $OO'URXJKW'LVDVWHU,QFLGHQWVDVRI move sand and dirt from the bottom of The Yazoo Water Management 6WDWH%RXQGDU\ the river to help make deeper passages Districtâ€™s main goal is to find the balance &RXQW\%RXQGDU\ for boats. between adequate water for farmers and 7ULEDO/DQGV It is still unclear how long river wamaintaining substantial flow in streams 3ULPDU\'HVLJQDWLRQ 6RXUFH86'$)DUP6HUYLFH$JHQF\ &RQWLJXRXV'HVLJQDWLRQ ters will remain low, but some estimates and rivers for wildlife. Agricultural water say travel on the river could be difficult supply in the Delta comes from shallow through most of the fall. aquifers. Water for industrial uses and If Kendall is not able to ship the cotton down the Mis- and less susceptible to drought than corn. drinking water comes from deeper aquifers and is unafsissippi River, he will have to look at alternatives. His top Prosser said on a statewide level, Hurricane Isaac did fected by the agricultural water supply. alternative is to store the cotton until the river is back to little to affect the soy crop. Delta farmers use more irrigated water than any navigable levels. While he does have some storage on his â€œI still think weâ€™ll have a record crop of soy beans,â€? other group in Mississippi. The state issues permits for farm, it isnâ€™t enough to hold his entire crop, he said. Prosser said. any water well with a diameter of six inches or larger. Another option is shipping the cotton by truck, but Gaddis Farms also ships most of its soybeans by Delta farmers hold 75 percent of those permits in the as prices on corn and other food commodities rise, so will way of the Mississippi River. Kendall said they have al- state, while all others industries and citizens make up the diesel fuel, making that option more expensive than ever ready begun looking into moving soybeans by truck. They other 25 percent. That, Pennington said, is why YMD is before. Kendall said he will have to find more storage if he have also begun preparing to store a lot of the soy, which needed in the area. The most important thing his group is unable to get his cotton on ships after harvest. they do not usually do. That means using less space to promotes is conservation. store corn. â€œ(We) try to get landowners who are using water to be Soybeans Survive, For Now â€œThereâ€™s not enough storage in the state for all our efficient and do not waste any,â€? Pennington said. Corn is not the only crop affected by the nationâ€™s crop, especially because weâ€™ve got a big crop,â€? Kendall said. The second thing is underused water supplies. The drought. Soy is another major cash crop in Mississippi, â€œWhen soybeans are ready, theyâ€™ve got to be gathered and biggest source of water in Mississippi, of course, is the Miswith statewide yields growing every year. Today, soybeans either stored or sold. Weâ€™ve got a lot of concerns about sissippi River and its tributaries. No one directly uses the are selling at record prices as wellâ€”$15 to $17 a bushel. moving the soybeans as we harvest them.â€? river to irrigate farms in the Delta; however, they do use it lived through 2005â€™s Hurricane Katrina and were better prepared for Isaac. â€œWe did see and learn a lot of lessons from Katrina at the farm level, like having generators available (and) having extra fuel on hand to run those generators,â€? Prosser said.
Thatâ€™s an increase of about $5 a bushel from last year. Garroway, who also serves as the president of the Mississippi Soybean Association, said Gaddis workers began harvesting soybeans the first week in September. He said he doesnâ€™t believe the rain from Hurricane Isaac really helped or hurt the soybeans, which are more resilient to wet conditions near harvesting time than cotton
September 12 - 18, 2012
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Delta Farmers Advocating Resource Management, and the state Soil and Water Conservation Commission have pooled resources to help build such reservoir systems. Pennington said the Delta has close to 20 tailwater systems that can irrigate 300 to 500 acres each. One of the most widely used new technologies in irrigation is known as Phaucet. The Delta has several hundred thousand acres that are irrigated using Polypipe, a thin, rollable pipe. Farmers poke holes in the pipes to allow water out to irrigate their fields. The NRCS developed a computer program that can tell farmer the optimum number and size of holes to punch in the pipes for a given crop row, based on row length and water pressure from the well. The system allows farmers to get a much more evenly distributed irrigation than they were getting on their own. “It’s taken off. It is being very widely accepted,” Pennington said of the program. “We started introducing people to that about three years ago, and landowners really like it.” There is little maintenance cost for a Phaucet system. All the farmers have to do is measure their rows and monitor water flow. With steady irrigation, fields produce more
‘Obviously, our hearts go out to the people in the Midwest, because we’ve been there. It’s awful. It’s horrible.’
uniformly, which saves the farmers time and water. Some early results show that Phaucet could reduce irrigation water usage by as much as 10 to 20 percent, Pennington said. “Some people suggest even more,” he said. At Mississippi State University, agriculture professors are researching an irrigation tool known as electronic moisture probes, Pennington said, which are not yet widely used in the state. The electronic monitors test the moisture level of the ground and wirelessly transmit the data to a computer. Pennington said he only knows of one or two landowners in the state who use the probes. “It’s one of those that’s got potential. It needs a little more development. Landowners need to more fully appreciate the value of it. It’s just now beginning to show up in this area,” he said. While new technological efforts may not be fully appreciated this year, Mississippi farmers know that it won’t be long until their fields suffer from a drought just as the Midwest is getting hit now. When that happens, Delta farmers will look to YMD and others working to solve the problem of where and how to get the water they need to produce their yields. “We haven’t had the widespread drought in a long time like they’re having now. The last two summers here, (though), we’ve had issues with pastures and ponds drying up and bad corn crops. I can relate,” Kendall said. “Obviously, our hearts go out to the people in the Midwest, because we’ve been there. It’s awful. It’s horrible. We’re not reveling in what’s happened price-wise, but it has affected the price and we’ve benefitted from it.” Contact Jacob D. Fuller at firstname.lastname@example.org. Comment at www.jfp.ms.
indirectly. When the river is high, its water seeps through the earth and into the aquifers. At times when the river is low though, like it has been this summer due to the midwestern drought, water runs from the aquifers back into the river. One current study for the district is finding how to redirect water from the Tallahatchie River to the Quiver River in Sunflower County. Moving the water would supply farmers with an alternative to ground water and allow them to store excess ground water for times of serious drought. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is working with YMD to offer cost-sharing assistance to landowners to build on-farm storage reservoirs, similar to large catfish ponds, and tailwater recovery systems. Tailwater systems catch water runoff, either from rain or irrigation, which would normally drain off the fields and stores the water in large ponds. “That water can be used to irrigate the field when it dries out, or that water is pumped into an above-ground reservoir where it can be held for several days, weeks or months and used as an irrigation water supply when (the field) dries out again,” Pennington said.
TWELVE DAYS OF LIVE MUSIC
AND BLUES EVENTS !
• Vicksburg’s Got the Blues with Stevie J AmeriStar Bottleneck Blues Bar, Vicksburg MS
• Catfish & Cotton - Highway 61 Blues Museum, Leland, MS • ‘Da Delta Black Music & Me - Hobnob’s, Leland, MS • Bud’s Blues House Kick-Off, Leland, MS Featuring DJ Hot Sauce as Emcee with Pat Thomas, Eddie Cusic, The Delta Connection Band, and John Horton and the Hammers • Live Music at Club Ebony, Indianola, MS • B.B. King Blues Club All-Stars, Memphis, TN • Mark Doyle & Dr. Who, Walnut Hills, Vicksburg, MS
• Highway 61 Blues Festival, Leland, MS • Indian Bayou Arts Festival, Indianola, MS • Gateway to the Delta Festival, Charleston MS Live music by Super Chikan and Blue Mountain • B.B. King Blues Club All-Stars, Memphis, TN • Mark Doyle & Dr. Who, Walnut Hills, Vicksburg, MS
• Holly Ridge Jam, Holly Ridge, MS • Gospel Brunch, da’ House of Khafre, Indianola, MS
• Live Blues Music, Hopson Commissary, Clarksdale, MS • Give My Poor Heart Ease: Voices of the Mississippi Blues, E.E. Bass, Greenville, MS, Photographs by William Ferris
• Dockery Farm Tours with Bill Lester, Cleveland, MS Live music by Cadillac John and Bill Abel • LD’s Kitchen, Vicksburg, MS Live music by Central Mississippi Blues Society • Po’ Monkey’s Blues Bash, Merigold, MS Terry Harmonica Bean & his blues band • King Biscuit Blues Festival Week Special, The Wild Hog Saloon, Helena, AR, Muddy Waters & The Rolling Stones perform at Chicago’s Checkerboard Lounge 1981
September 12 - 18, 2012
• King Biscuit Blues Festival, Helena, AR, Headliner: Bobby Rush • Art Alfresco, Greenwood, MS • Po’ Monkey’s, Merigold, MS • B.B. King Blues Club All-Stars, Memphis, TN • Memphis Blues Society IBC Competition Rum Boogie Cafe, Memphis, TN • Vicksburg’s Got the Blues with Stevie J AmeriStar Bottleneck Blues Bar, Vicksburg MS
• King Biscuit Blues Festival, Helena, AR, Headliner: Taj Mahal • B.B. King Blues Club All-Stars, Memphis, TN • Eric Hughes Band, Bob Margolin at Rum Boogie Cafe Memphis, TN • Mark Doyle & Dr. Who, Walnut Hills, Vicksburg, MS
• FREE Live Music, King Biscuit Blues Festival Bit ‘O Blues Stage Helena, AR • King Biscuit Blues Festival, Helena, AR, Headliner: Bonnie Raitt • Mississippi Blues Fest, Greenwood, MS • 2nd Street Blues Party, Clarksdale, MS • Otherfest, Hwy 1, The River Resort, Rosedale, MS • Sam Chatmon Festival, Hollandale, MS • B.B. King Blues Club All-Stars, Memphis, TN • Mark Doyle & Dr. Who, Walnut Hills, Vicksburg, MS
• 2nd Street Blues Party, Clarksdale, MS • Cat Head Mini Blues Fest III, Clarksdale, MS • Pinetop Perkins Homecoming, Hopson Commissary Clarksdale, MS
• Live Blues Music, Hopson Commissary, Clarksdale, MS
• FREE Live Music “Biscuits and Jams,” King Biscuit Blues Festival Main Stage, Helena, AR • Birthright Blues Project Jam, Wild Hog Saloon, Helena, AR • Memphis Blues Society IBC Competition Rum Boogie Cafe, Memphis, TN • #BridgingTheBlues #BluesTweetUp, Gateway to the Blues Museum, Tunica, MS, Live music by Super Chikan & Zak Hood
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FILM p 24 | 8 DAYS p 26 |MUSIC p 30 | SPORTS p 32 KATHLEEN M. MITCHELL
by Kathleen M. Mitchell
alamieka and Charles Brice met in drawing class. Competitiveness in the classroom eventually grew into a marriage and partnership in Brice Media, a photography and graphic art company the couple co-owns. Art has long been a part of their lives and their relationship. Charles, 33, was deployed to Afghanistan with the Army as a photojournalist in 2008. He remained there for 10 months. After he returned and was discharged from service, he and Talemieka, 31, began telling their individual stories through art, and “Combat Boots and High Heels,” a multimedia art exhibit focused on military life was born. The show features a combination of photography, graphic art and large-scale paintings. The couple also plans to write a book about their experiences featuring the art they’ve created. When did you find out you were called to deployment? CHARLES: On my birthday. ... My commander called me and wished me happy birthday, and he was like, “And another thing, we just got word that we’re getting deployed.” What was the feeling like before you left? CHARLES: So while all this training and
stuff was going on (to prepare to deploy), you have to make preparations with your family—your finances, your family matters, emotional stuff. You have to get all of that out of the way because it is considered a distraction to the Army. And it was a time that I would say a soldier would make peace with himself before he goes off to war. With her, I never really realized her side of the story until years later. It seemed like it was all about me, me, me, me. TALAMIEKA: Just like he said, before he leaves, there is just like a back and forth, going to training, then home, then gone again. But what made me really realize that things were changing significantly was he fell asleep during those three days (at home between training sessions). He was fully dressed, shoes, everything was on, and all the lights were on in the house. And I was kind of laughing because I thought it was funny that he fell asleep, but then when I went to wake him up, I startled him, and he went to reach for what would have been his gun. So that was the really heavy part of, “This is really happening, this is changing, and that man that I married is becoming someone else.” I think that’s what a lot of wives deal with, they don’t come back the same, and you’re not the same. Because you grow anyway while you’re deployed.
And while he was abroad, how did you cope? TALAMIEKA: I (tried to be outwardly strong), but it’s a mask. And that’s what a couple of pieces (in the show) deal with. Charles and I both agreed that as a soldier, as a wife, a lot of times you just put on a mask. The only thing I had that someone would wonder or know that I had a deployed husband was because I wore his dog tags.
What feelings came out as you started the art for the exhibit? TALAMIEKA: It’s just the heaviness of it all. That’s the one thing I’ve been surprised at in the pieces we’ve created. The art that we do when we do families and children is very happy and bright and vibrant, even with our graphics. This show has been heavy. Even the medium that we’re using is heavy. Our pieces are mainly wood, and they’re very heavy.
Charles, what were your experiences in the field? CHARLES: There are positive things along with the negative things about being deployed. The positive is the people you meet. Some situations you go through are positive because it shows you the culture, and it opens your eyes. … The things I saw, especially the way they treat the women … It made me value her a lot more, and that’s what made me actually start thinking about what she’s going through, over here.
What have you learned about one another in doing this artwork? TALAMIEKA: This show has truly been very therapeutic, because when he came back there was an adjustment period for a time and there were anger issues and post-traumatic stress. And what I didn’t realize is that as his wife, I had post-traumatic stress myself. Like it was only three months ago that I could stop waking up and calling his name. And we have learned … He’s been a lot more open about his experiences, and I have been a lot more open about mine. So we’ve actually been able to see each other’s point of view through this show, and we found that we had a lot of things in common. See “Combat Boots and High Heels” at the Mississippi Arts Center (201 E. Pascagoula St., 601-960-1500) through Sept. 26. The show is free, although the Brices are accepting donations to the Mississippi Military Families Readiness Group.
What was the readjustment like when he returned home? CHARLES: Awkward! TALAMIEKA: It was very, very awkward. Because I’d gotten used to doing things without him, you know, taking care of all the bills, taking care of the yard work, taking care of my stuff and his, because I have to act as him while he is deployed.
In Their Shoes
Charles Brice works on a panorama painting of his experiences in Afghanistan.
Promises, Promises COURTESY CBS FILM
By Anita Modak-Truran
Bradley Cooper and Zoe Saldaña embody lost hope in “The Words.”
September 12 - 18, 2012
he Words” is a literary movie. I mean that all too literally. This film, written and directed by Brian Klugman and Lee Sternthal, tells a story of an author who has written a book called “The Words.” The book delves into the life of an “imaginary” author who publishes a book called “The Window Tears,” which he did not write, but instead plagiarized word for word (including misspellings) from an old manuscript found in the lining of a distressed attaché that his wife bought for him from an antique store during their honeymoon in Paris. The original manuscript is the sole literary achievement of an unknown writer (then a young man, but who appears in the film as an old man). The real writer (Jeremy Irons) wrote the novel during a breaking point in his life. He lived and breathed post-World War II Paris. The forger (Bradley Cooper) and the recording voyeur (Dennis Quaid) did not. The movie promises a heady experience, intertwining three layers of literary voices and personal hardships until “life” and “fiction” are inseparable—a possible thrill after the dullest summer of sequels and remakes on record. The twisting sub-plots pull and twist into a rubric’s cube of literary narrative so dense that at one point, I envisioned a cinematic experience as ingenuous as “The Hours,” another “book within a book” film. Unfortunately, “The Words” fizzles out before literary lift-off. The movie opens on Clay Hammond (Quaid), a celebrity author reading excerpts of his new book, “The Words,” to a capacity crowd. Hammond’s deep and inviting baritone voice introduces his listeners to an old man (Irons) standing in the rain outside a fancy New York hotel. It’s late evening, and a handsome young couple gets into a black limo. The couple represents everything the old man is not. The film flashes back to the American Fellowship Award ceremonies, where we see the same young couple—Rory Jansen (Cooper) and his dazzling beautiful wife Dora (Zoe Saldaña)—sitting in the seats of honor. Accepting the highest award of the evening, Rory deflects the accolades and refers to his
first published novel as a little book that some people liked. Cooper grounds Rory in three-dimension. Rory seems much more real than Hammond. Klugman and Sternthal pull out a second flashback into Rory’s struggles to become a professional writer. The stacks of rejection letters and a running inner monologue of “I’m not good enough” haunt Rory. He’s scared: “I’m not who I thought I was. I’m terrified that I will not be who I want to be.” Dora hugs him. She pets his hair. She coos encouragement. She never questions the validity of his dream. And then success—forged from someone else brilliance— falls to Rory. The movie cuts back to Hammond reading. You see, this is a reading of book within a book, and the filmmakers like to yank down the fourth wall to keep us off balance. As a result, the experience is jarring and disjointed, and what is real or not blurs together. During a break, an impressionable young woman (Olivia Wilde) with large, hero-worshipping eyes and a short skirt, flirts with Hammond. Hammond reluctantly returns to the podium to continue this next section of the book: Rory’s fall from grace. “Rory is the darling of the literary world,” booms Hammond. “Then he meets the old man … .” The real and imaginary people in this film are destroyed by the repression of lost hope. The myriad references to Ernest Hemingway and his ex-pat days in Paris seem to transfer the Lost Hope generation to the present. The film dabbles with themes of immorality among successful people, only to pull out a smug, unsatisfying ending. Despite moments of illumination from a brilliant cast and a feeling of authenticity, this movie aimlessly meanders into the hellish underbelly of middle-class despair, so harrowing that you may wish to bash your head in with a manual typewriter so as to clear the fog of depression. (I would have done so, but we cleaned the attic recently, and the old typewriter has been removed from the curb.) Some may think that I’m sliding into a melodramatic fit. But if the words fit … well … then they fit.
BEST BETS September 12 - 19, 2012 by Latasha Willis email@example.com Fax: 601-510-9019 Daily updates at jfpevents.com
COURTESY BOBBY RUSH
JPS Superintendent Dr. Cedrick Gray speaks at Jackson 2000’s luncheon at 11:45 a.m. at the Arts Center of Mississippi (201 E. Pascagoula St.). $12, $10 members; email firstname.lastname@example.org to RSVP. … Millsaps College Library director Tom Henderson speaks during History Is Lunch at noon at the William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Free; call 601-576-6998. … Theresa Andersson and Marlowe and the Sea perform at 7:30 p.m. at Hal & Mal’s. $8 advance, $10 at door; call 800-745-3000. … The play “The Foreigner” is at 7:30 p.m. at New Stage Theatre (1100 Carlisle St.); runs through Sept. 23. $22-28; call 601948-3533. … The musical “Godspell” is at 7:30 p.m. at Black Rose Theatre (103 Black St., Brandon); runs through Sept. 23. $15, $10 seniors/students; call 601-825-1293.
Vernon King, vice president of development at Methodist Children’s Homes, speaks during Friday Forum at 9 a.m. at Koinonia Coffee House (136 S. Adams St.). Free; email email@example.com. … The Women’s Fund hosts the screening of the film “Miss Representation” at 5:30 p.m. at the Jackson Convention Complex. Space limited; RSVP. Free; call 601-326-3001. … The Detectives present the dinner theater “Where There’s a Will … There’s a Way” at 6 p.m. at Parker House. $49; call 601-937-1752 to RSVP. … The Mike Dillon Band plays at Martin’s. … Fulkerson/Pace is at Fenian’s. … The Colonels perform at Reed Pierce’s. … The Press Play Band is at Studio 33. … Renegade is at Olga’s.
Race for Lionheart is at 8 a.m. at Time Out. Proceeds from the race go toward medical expenses for owner Richard Hartung. $20-$25; call 601-978-1839. … The Walk to End Alzheimer’s is at 9 a.m. at the Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). Proceeds benefit the Alzheimer’s Association of Mississippi. Fundraising encouraged; call 601987-0020. … The “Rollin’ Thru the Park” car, truck and bike show is at 9 a.m. at Pearl City Park (160 Mary Ann Drive, Pearl). Proceeds benefit Community Animal Rescue and Adoption (CARA). $20 in advance, $25 day of event; call 601939-7730. … The Mississippi Delta Blues and Heritage Festival kicks off at noon at the Washington County Convention Center (1040 S. Raceway Road, Greenville). $30, $100 VIP; call 662-335-3523. … The Farish Street YMCA Best of BBQ competition is at noon at I.S. Sanders YMCA (806 N. Farish St.). $10 admission, $50-$150 teams; call 601-948-3643. … Artapalooza Mississippi is at noon at Duling Green (Duling Avenue and Old Canton Road). $10, vendor fees vary; email firstname.lastname@example.org or artapaloozams@gmail. com. … The Build Soul’s Dream Kitchen Music Festival 2 is at 6 p.m. at Soul Wired Cafe. $5; call 601-863-6378. … The Mississippi Symphony Orchestra presents “Bravo I: Mahler’s Fifth” at 7:30 p.m. at Thalia Mara Hall. $20 and up; call 601960-1565. … Nameless Open-mic is at 9 p.m. at Suite 106. $5 admission, $3 to perform. … Archnemesis is at Martin’s. Bobby Rush performs at the Mississippi Delta Blues and Heritage Festival Sept. 15 at the Washington County Convention Center in Greenville.
September 12 - 18, 2012
The New Vibrations Network Gathering is at 6:30 p.m. at Unitarian Universalist Church (4866 N. State St.). Bring business cards. Free; email email@example.com. … Ha Ha Tonka performs at 7:30 p.m. at Hal & Mal’s. $5 in advance, $8 at the door; call 800-745-3000. … The Center Players present the play “Rumors” at 7:30 p.m. at Madison Square Center for the Arts (2103 Main St., Madison); show runs through Sept. 16. $12, $10 seniors and students; call 601953-0181. … Soul Wired Cafe hosts Soul Lesson Thursday. … Shaun Patterson is at Burgers & Blues. … Snazz plays at Pop’s. … The Rick Moreira Jazz Trio performs at Olga’s. … The High Frequency Band plays at Studio 33. … The Orchard Band is at Fenian’s. … The Hustlers are at Local 463.
Enjoy 50-percent off carousel rides during Carousel Day at the Jackson Zoo (2918 W. Capitol St.). Regular admission applies; call 601-352-2580. … John Maxwell presents the monologue “The Prodigal” at 10 a.m. at Chapel of the Cross (674 Mannsdale Road, Madison) and at 7 p.m. at Fondren Church (Duling Hall Auditorium, 622 Duling Ave.). Free; johnmaxwellactor.com. … Larry Brewer is at Pelican Cove.
The DFM Invitational golf tournament is at 11 a.m. at Annandale Golf Club (419 Annandale Parkway, Madison). Proceeds benefit the Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi. Fees vary; call 601-957-7878. … ESPN college football analyst Brad Edwards speaks to the Jackson Touchdown Club at 6 p.m. at River Hills Country Club (3600 Ridgewood Road). $30 nonmembers; call 601-506-3186. … Heather Clancy performs during Opera Underground at 7 p.m. at Underground 119. Mississippi Opera season tickets: $100, $94.50 seniors, $40 students, $30 children; call 601-960-2300.
Enjoy a four-course meal with selected wines at the French Wine Dinner at 6:30 p.m. at Anjou (361 Township Ave., Ridgeland). $70; call 601-707-0587 to RSVP. … The Farmers Market Dinner is at 6:30 p.m. at Char. $35 plus tax, tip and cost of alcohol; call 601-956-9562. … The Church Keys play at Sal & Mookie’s from 6-9 p.m.
Author Francoise Hamlin speaks during “History Is Lunch” at noon at the William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Free; call 601-576-6998. … Seryn and Julia Sinclair perform at 7:30 p.m. at Hal & Mal’s. For ages 18 and up. $5 in advance, $10 at the door; call 800-745-3000. … Aaron Coker is at Pieworks. More at jfpevents.com and jfp.ms/musicvenues. Seryn performs at Hal & Mal Sept. 19 at 7:30 p.m. DANIELDAVISPHOTO.COM
Big Juv (Blues)
The Orchard Band (Traditional Irish) FRIDAY 9/14
Fulkersonâ€™s Pace Â…'BNJMZ'SJFOEMZ
Â…(MVUFO'SFF0QUJPOT Â…7FHBO0QUJPOT %PHXPPE'FTUJWBM %PHXPPE#MWE'MPXPPE .4
A Bushel Of Flavor Meets A Barrel Of Smoothness
Rump Rollers (Soul Jazz)
Karaoke w/ Matt TUESDAY 9/18
Open Mic hosted by A Guy Named George
-Voted Best of Jackson2003 - 2012
Mon - Fri: lunch 11-2 dinner 5- 9:30 Sat: 4-9:30
Try our new wraps while they last.
â€˘ Reuben â€˘ Summer Veggie â€˘Jerk Chicken and more!
(Next door to McDades Market Extra) Mon. - Sat., 10 am - 9 pm â€˘ Maywood Mart Shopping Center 1220 E. Northside Dr. â€˘ 601-366-5676 â€˘ www.mcdadeswineandspirits.com
Always Drink Responsibly
1405 Old Square Road Jackson MS
jfpevents Jackson 2000 Luncheon Sept. 12, 11:45 a.m., at Arts Center of Mississippi (201 E. Pascagoula St.). Dr. Cedrick Gray, superintendent of Jackson Public Schools, is the speaker. RSVP. $12, $10 members; email firstname.lastname@example.org.
COMMUNITY â€œHistory Is Lunchâ€? Sept. 12, noon, at William F. Winter Archives and History Building (200 North St.). Millsaps College Library director Tom Henderson presents â€œFinding Hooch and Homicide on the Gold Coast: Liquor and Crime in East Jackson.â€? Free; call 601-576-6998. Public Utility Equipment Auction Sept. 13, 9 a.m.3 p.m., at J.J. Kaneâ€™s Auctioneers (6029 W. Frontage Road (off Interstate 55 S.), Byram). Preview items Sept. 12 from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Call 901-484-0254. Christmas in September Sept. 13, 10 a.m., at River Room Conference Center (100 Ridge Road, Flowood). Corporate Apparel and Promotions sells promotional items. Free; call 601-992-8849. â€œThe Outcome of Black Males in Urban Institutionsâ€? Panel Discussion Sept. 13, 11:30 a.m., at Jackson State University (1400 John R. Lynch St.), at the Dollye M.E. Robinson Building, room 166/266. Free; call 601-979-1563. Back to School Night for Educators Sept. 13, 3-7 p.m. The Mississippi Museum of Natural Science, the Mississippi Childrenâ€™s Museum, the Mississippi Agriculture Museum and the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame give educators free admission and offer resources. Free; call 601-576-6000, 601981-5469, 601-982-8264 or 601-432-4500. Minority Business Network Monthly Meeting Sept. 13, 6-8 p.m., at Divine Ministries (1417 W. Capitol St.), in the Multipurpose Center. Refreshments and prizes included. Bring business cards. RSVP. Free; call 601-750-2367 or 601-316-5092. Friday Forum Sept. 14, 9 a.m., at Koinonia Coffee House (136 S. Adams St., Suite C). The speaker is Vernon King of Methodist Childrenâ€™s Homes. Free; email email@example.com. Jackson Audubon Society Annual Hawk Migration Watch Sept. 15, 9 a.m.-noon, at Vicksburg Military Park (Clay St., Vicksburg), at Fort Hill. $8 park entrance fee; call 601-956-7444. Magnolia Classic AKC Dog Show Sept. 1516, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., at Mississippi State Fairgrounds (1207 Mississippi St.), at the Trade Mart and the Mississippi Coliseum. $2; call 601-573-8133. MiCherie Treasures Consignment Sale Sept. 15, 10 a.m.-6 p.m., at Hampton Inn and Suites, Coliseum (320 Greymont Ave.). Purchase womenâ€™s apparel and accessories. Call 601-238-5312. Farish Street YMCA Best of BBQ Competition Sept. 15, noon, at I.S. Sanders YMCA (806 N.
Farish St.). Amateur and professional cooking teams compete, and guests vote for the best barbecue. $10 admission, $50-$150 teams; call 601-948-3643. ACLU of Mississippi Annual Membership Meeting Sept. 15, 5:30-7:30 p.m., at Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum (1152 Lakeland Drive). RSVP. Free, $20 membership; call 601-354-3408. Thick And Proud Sisters (T.A.P.S.) Model Casting Call for Full-Framed Women Sept. 16, 5 p.m., at Dreamz JXN (426 W. Capitol St.). For ages 21 and older. Wear stylish attire and heels. Free; email firstname.lastname@example.org. Door to Door with Dore: An Open House for Area Teachers Sept. 17, 3-6 p.m., at Dore Jackson (1850 Lakeland Drive, Suite P-221). Learn about a multi-sensory program for students. Refreshments and prizes included. Free; call 601-326-5550. Jackson Touchdown Club Meeting Sept. 17, 6 p.m., at River Hills Club (3600 Ridgewood Road). ESPN college football analyst Brad Edwards speaks. $30 non-members; call 601-506-3186. Project Homeless Connect Service Fair Sept. 18, 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., at Smith Park (Yazoo St.). Get information on housing, services and resources. Free; call 601-213-5301. CONTACT the Crisis Line Training Sept. 18, 6:45 p.m., at Ascension Lutheran Church (6481 Old Canton Road). Call 601-982-9888.
FAMILY Artapalooza Mississippi Sept. 15, noon-7 p.m., at Duling Green (Duling Avenue and Old Canton Road). Artists sell and create artwork, and musicians and dancers are welcome to perform. $10, vendor fees vary; email email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
â€œGodspellâ€? through Sept. 23, at Black Rose Theatre (103 Black St., Brandon). The musical is ThursdaySaturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday at 2 p.m. RSVP recommended. $10-$15; call 601-825-1293.
MUSIC Concerts at Hal & Malâ€™s (200 Commerce St.) at 7:30 p.m. Call 601-292-7121 or 800-745-3000. â€˘ Theresa Andersson, and Marlowe and the Sea Sept. 12. For ages 18 and up. $8 in advance, $10 at the door. â€˘ Ha Ha Tonka Sept. 13. $5 in advance, $8 at the door. Build Soulâ€™s Dream Kitchen Music Festival 2 Sept. 15, 5 p.m.-2 a.m., at Soul Wired Cafe (111 Millsaps Ave.). Proceeds go toward completing the cafeâ€™s kitchen. $5; call 601-863-6378. â€œBravo I: Mahlerâ€™s Fifthâ€? Sept. 15, 7:30 p.m., at Thalia Mara Hall (255 E. Pascagoula St.). The Mississippi Symphony Orchestra performs. $20 and up. $20 and up; call 601-960-1565.
Mississippi Delta Blues and Heritage Festival Sept. 15, noon-10 p.m., at Washington County Convention Center (1040 S. Raceway Road, Greenville), at the fairgrounds. $30, $100 VIP; call 662-335-3523.
Neil Simonâ€™s â€œRumors,â€? at Madison Square Center for the Arts (2103 Main St., Madison). See the play Sept. 13â€“15 at 7:30 p.m. and Sept. 16 at 2:30 p.m. $10-$12; call 601-953-0181.
BE THE CHANGE
Walk to End Alzheimerâ€™s Sept. 15, 9 a.m., at Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.), at the Art Garden. Proceeds benefit the Alzheimerâ€™s Association. Fundraising encouraged; call 601-987-0020.
September 12 - 18, 2012
â€œThe Foreigner,â€? at New Stage Theatre (1100 Carlisle St.). The play is Sept. 12-15 and Sept. 19-22 at 7:30 p.m., and Sept. 16 and 23 at 2 p.m. $22-$28; call 601-948-3533.
STAGE AND SCREEN
â€œMiss Representationâ€? Film Screening Sept. 13, 5:30 p.m., at Jackson Convention Complex (105 E. Pascagoula St.). RSVP. Free; call 601-326-3001.
Rollinâ€™ Thru the Park Sept. 15, 9 a.m.-4 p.m., at Pearl City Park (160 Mary Ann Drive, Pearl). Enjoy a car, truck and bike show (pre-registration required, awards given). Proceeds benefit Community Animal Rescue and Adoption (CARA). Free admission, dog food or cat littler donations welcome, show registration: $20 in advance, $25 day of event; call 601-939-7730. Southern Poverty Law Center Advocacy Training Sept. 15, 11 a.m., at Lumpkins BBQ (182 Raymond Road). The topic is â€œHow to Advocate to the School Board.â€? Lunch and drinks provided. Free; call 334-322-8218. DFM Invitational Sept. 17, 11 a.m., at Annandale Golf Club (419 Annandale Parkway, Madison). Registration is at 11 a.m., and the shotgun start is at 1 p.m. Proceeds from the golf tournament benefit the Diabetes Foundation of Mississippi. Registration fees vary; call 601-957-7878.
Mississippi State Fair Talent Competition Ages 3-14 register by Sept. 14, and ages 15 and up register by Sept. 21. $50 per act; call 601-201-6620.
Opera Underground Sept. 17, 7 p.m., at Underground 119 (119 S. President St.). Heather Clancy performs. Food prices vary. Art and free wine from 5-6 p.m. upstairs at Nunneryâ€™s at Gallery 119. Season ticket prices vary; call 601-960-2300.
â€œThe Prodigalâ€? Sept. 16. Actor and playwright John Maxwell presents the monologue derived from the parable about the Prodigal Son. Free. â€˘ 10 a.m., at Chapel of the Cross (674 Mannsdale Road, Madison). Call 601-856-2593. â€˘ 7 p.m., at Fondren Church (Duling Hall Auditorium, 622 Duling Ave.). Call 601-208-0800.
Nameless Open-mic Sept. 15, 9 p.m., at Suite 106 (106 Wilmington St.). $5, $3 to perform; call 601720-4640.
Arts on the Square Sept. 15, 4-8 p.m., and Sept. 16, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., at Historic Canton Square (Courthouse Square, Canton). Artists sell items and give demonstrations. Free admission; call 601-859-5816.
Race for Lionheart Sept. 15, 8 a.m., at Time Out Sports Cafe (6720 Old Canton Road). The event includes a 5K run/walk, food, a raffle and live music. Proceeds go toward medical expenses for Time Out owner Richard Hartung. $20-$25; call 601-978-1839.
â€œWhere Thereâ€™s a Will ... Thereâ€™s a Wayâ€? Dinner Theater Sept. 14, 6-9 p.m., at Parker House (104 S.E. Madison Drive, Ridgeland). The Detectives Mystery Dinner Theatre performs. Four-course meal included. RSVP. $49; call 601-937-1752.
LITERARY AND SIGNINGS Events at Lemuria Books (4465 Interstate 55 North, Suite 202). Call 601-366-7619. â€˘ â€œWe End in Joy: Memoirs of a First Daughterâ€? Sept. 13, 5 p.m. Angela Fordice Jordan signs books. Reading at 5:30 p.m. $25 book. â€˘ â€œThe Weight of Memoryâ€? Sept. 15, 1 p.m. Jennifer Paddock signs books. $24 book. â€˘ â€œA Case for Solomon: Bobby Dunbar and the Kidnapping That Haunted a Nationâ€? Sept. 17, 5 p.m. Tal McThenia signs books. Reading at 5:30 p.m. $26.99 book. â€˘ â€œTimepiece: An Hourglass Novelâ€? Sept. 18, 4 p.m. Myra McEntire signs books. $17.99 book. Millsaps College Visiting Writers Series Sept. 13, 7 p.m., at Millsaps College, Ford Academic Complex (1701 N. State St.), in room 215. Novelist John Dufresne speaks. Free; call 601-974-1305.
CREATIVE CLASSES Events at Applause Dance Factory (242 Stephens St., Ridgeland). $10 per class, $5 students; call 601856-6168. â€˘ Latin Dance Class: Rumba Wednesdays, 7-8 p.m. through Sept. 26. â€˘ Ballroom Dance Class: Waltz Fridays, 6-7 p.m. through Sept. 28. â€˘ Ballroom Dance Class: Foxtrot Tuesdays, 6-7 p.m. through Sept. 25.
COURTESY ONE WORLD/BALLENTINE
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Bachata Class Mondays, 7:30 p.m. through Sept. 24, at Salsa Mississippi Studio and Club (605 Duling Ave.). $10 per class; call 601213-6355. The Museum After School Sept. 18-Nov. 8, at Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). For students in grades 6-8. $300, $285 members; email email@example.com.
EXHIBITS AND OPENINGS Unburied Treasures: Greatest Hits Sept. 18, 6 p.m., at Mississippi Museum of Art (380 S. Lamar St.). Wyatt Waters discusses his plein air painting methodology, and Robert St. John talks about research on Italian culinary arts. Free; call 601-960-1515. Check jfpevents.com for updates and more listings. To add an event, email all details (phone number, start and end date, time, street address, cost, URL, etc.) to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax to 601510-9019. The deadline is noon the Thursday prior to the week of publication. Or add the event online yourself; check out jfpevents.com for instructions.
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Big Things in a Small Room by Briana Robinson COURTESY SMALL ROOM 9
“It’s kind of neat. You do all this work for all this time—it’s nice when things start happening,” guitarist Glenn Sasser says about his band’s recent success. This weekend, Small Room 9 will perform at Hal & Mal’s. The Hattiesburg-based Small Room 9 is lead singer Rod Mooney, guitarist Sasser, bassist Rusty Galt and drummer Joseph “Fluff” Kinkead. Together, they create a sound that is different and radio-ready at the same time. Sasser likes to generalize Small Room 9’s sound as alternative rock. “It’s like that cross between U2 and Foo Fighters. I don’t know how else to describe it,” he says. Dave on HySmall Room 9 (from left: Joseph “Fluff” Kinkead, Rod Mooney, Rusty Galt and peTree, a website where people can discover Glenn Sasser) performs Sept. 15 at Hal & Mal’s. and rate independent musicians, first made that comparison. He says that they “take the ay was a big month for Small Room 9. First, Mar- inspirational lyricism and guitar versatility of U2 and mix it lene Palumbo from the Rock Band Network chose with the edge and rock and roll attitude of the Foo Fighters.” the band to be featured as downloadable content for While it’s an honor to be compared to two big names the video game Rock Band with the song “Paging such as those, Sasser says that he and his bandmates don’t chase Ground Control.” The next week, Small Room 9’s album, a certain style. “We don’t try to sound like anybody. There’s just “SR9,” rose to the top of AirPlay Direct’s most-downloaded so much music out there, there’s bound to be comparisons,” he rock-album chart with 75 downloads in just a few days. The says. The band is, however, influenced by bands such as Oasis, website allows radio stations to find and download songs to U2 and Muse—bands that Sasser describes as more melodic play on the air. and not so heavy.
Unlike most bands, Small Room 9 has not released any singles, yet. Instead, they upload to AirPlay Direct. “We’ve had a demand for pretty much every song,” Sasser says. “Being Human,” “Again,” “Paging Ground Control” and “All I Ever Wanted” are just a few of the most popularly downloaded songs. After the success of “Paging Ground Control” on the radio and with Rock Band, Small Room 9 plans to film a video for the song in January and release it as their first single. “There’s all these things that are going on in your life, and you can’t really do anything about it,” Sasser says about the song’s message. The band is preparing to do a European tour next summer, because European radio stations download and play Small Room 9 songs the most. “They don’t think we’re from the United States,” Sasser says. Unlike some popular bands these days, Small Room 9 tries to relay a positive message through its music. “Find Me” is about trying to reach out to someone who is following all the wrong paths. Sasser says they usually play it last at live shows. Just as the late Herman Snell wrote in 2004 in the Jackson Free Press, Small Room 9 is “nothing too heavy, nothing too pop, just straight up rock and roll.” Small Room 9 performs at Hal & Mal’s (200 S. Commerce St., 601-948-0888) Sept. 15 at 10 p.m. The cover charge is TBA. Find Small Room 9 on Facebook or ReverbNation.
The Key of G Plans and Decisions
September 12 - 18, 2012
his week I bring you a tale of two cities, a tale of making plans and going with the flow, and a tale of making amazingly proper decisions. First off, let’s talk about making plans. Catherine and I had been excited since the spring, when Phish announced the second leg of their summer tour that included stops in Birmingham and Atlanta. We bought tickets immediately on the on-sale date and made plans to hit up both southeastern shows, which luckily fell on a Friday and Saturday. About a month before the show, our plans started to change. For some reason, we decided that we had gotten too old to go to two Phish shows in a row, so we opted out of Atlanta. This was huge for us, because we had made that run, and many longer ones, many times in our life together. It was a sign of maturity that scared and impressed us at the same time. As we got closer to the show in Birmingham, things changed even more. My brother’s wife, Natalie, who you read about in my column about their son Miles, decided to stay home with the new-
born so Jesse, my brother, could come along with us to celebrate his birthday. There aren’t enough fingers and toes among Jesse, Catherine and me to count the number of times the three of us have travelled together to go to shows. This time was a little different, though, considering the newborn at home, the birthday, and the fact that it was Jesse’s first time with Phish (he is a grizzled Grateful Dead guy). Jesse’s motto of “everything is funny, everyone is right” carried us through the weekend peacefully. The show itself was everything we wanted. When you catch one show a year of a band that is better understood from seeing multiple shows on a tour, you learn to just go with it and live in the moment, which is something that Phish, whether you love them or hate them, makes you do. We danced, we hugged, we laughed, we yelled, we threw down. Although our plans had changed drastically since the tour was announced, our plan to have a great time and freak out for three hours remained intact. The funk-heavy setlist didn’t hurt, either. The following weekend brought even more plans for Catherine and me. One of
her cousins in Detroit was getting married old saxophone master played a set full of clason Labor Day weekend, and we had planned sics from his albums as well as some serious for months to be there. ordered plane tick- improvisation that was anchored by drumets and booked a hotel room. Every day was mer Brian Blade, who, notwithstanding the regimented with healthy legend on stage with him, doses of family time and, might have stolen the of course, the wedding show. It’s not often you and reception. get to see living legends What we hadn’t and personal heroes play planned on was seeing a a set for free downtown commercial on TV for the in one of your favorite 33rd annual Detroit Jazz cities. Our decision to Festival, the world’s largest break away from the plan free jazz fest. The headlinwas well rewarded. ers included Sonny RolAnd there you have lins, Chick Corea, Wynit: When it comes to ton Marsalis and Wayne live music, plans can be Shorter. I was astounded good, but just going with that we didn’t know about it can be just as great. this sooner, but not surOn our trips, we visited prised, because we had Whether planned to the last detail and bought records from only planned around or spontaneous, a trip filled with two of our favorite stores music is always a good decision. the wedding. I pulled up (Charlemagne Record the schedule online and Exchange in Birmingsaw that we could catch the Wayne Shorter ham and UHF Records in Detroit), which Quartet’s Sunday night set. We made the was part of the plan all along. Never let it be decision to go. said that the Lees don’t know how to fill a Shorter’s set was amazing. The 79-year- weekend with music, plans or not. GARRAD LEE
by Garrad Lee
SEPT. 12 - WEDNESDAY
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