December 7, 2005

The Artful Writer - A Screenwriting Blog

The Artful Writer - A Screenwriting Blog: "...But Mentor Characters Are Good

After taking some expected abuse for my article on real-life mentors and why they're mostly worthless, I figured I'd leave off the tough love angle for a bit and talk about the kind of mentors I like.
The character archetype of The Mentor is one of the classics, and that's why the Mentor often seems lame. After thousands of years Mentoring heroes, it's getting to the point where we cringe at the thought of the alcoholic sports coach or the wise old woman or the dance instructor who bangs a big stick on the floor and promises to "make you sweat!"

more

November 30, 2005

Pam danielle britt


This is Pam, Danielle and Brit at our DT (trainer) meeting / bowling night. Good fun great times.

November 27, 2005

Magnet Works: �on Flux

Good write up on ├ćon Flux and memories from my friend Will's Blog

Magnet Works: �on Flux

November 13, 2005

Josh on IMDB

Not to brag or anything, (and I don't know how they confirmed this) but I now have an entry on IMDB (Internet Movie Data Base)!
I actually submitted myself last month and I guess they confirmed my presence there or something. Check it out!

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0415306/combined

and my own page here:

http://www.imdb.com/name/nm2056947/

Sidewalk Scramble Febuary '05 (Team Suction Horse)

Sidewalk Scramble Febuary '05 (Team Suction Horse)



Check out our latest short film project!

High Wide Extras

High Wide Extras

We now have a small group for all the extras that worked on the Talladega shoot of "High Wide and Handsome" lots of cool behind the scenes pics of Will Ferrell and all the others even if you didn't work. Check it out!

Camera Phones Lend Immediacy to Images of Disaster


Camera Phones Lend Immediacy to Images of Disaster

Good article on camera phone's in emergencies.

A birthday picture


Here's Carrie and I at one of my favorite restaurants in Birmingham (where she used to work) J. Alexanders, where we went for my birthday! (and that my friends, is a run-on sentence).

Sidewalk Film Forum: SCRAMBLE TALK

Sidewalk Film Forum: SCRAMBLE TALK

This is our little forum where we've been talking about short film and the Sidewalk Scramble lately. Funny stuff, check it out!

Magnet Works

Magnet Works

This is my friend William's new BLOG. He's an artist and a writer so watch out for weird stuff |-) (J/K Will!)

October 13, 2005

October 7, 2005

Fun fun fun!

Well, I had an AWESOME time this week. As you can see, I got to see and participate in alot of cool stuff. I was a Stand In most of the time for David Koetchner and Gary Cole but I also did some utility stand in as well. I got to extra a little for some crowd scenes on both sides of the track for the crash and foot race scenes. I learned alot about the business from the Casting Associates and some of the PAs as well.

Oh, check this out: If you have the Forrest Gump DVD, go to the scene selections and go to #12 or "Forrest on the shrimp boat". In that general time period in the movie find the scene where Jenny almost jumps off the balcony. Take a look at the drugged out boyfriend that she has in that scene. That guy's name is Matt Rebenkoff and he was our 1st AD (he basically ran the whole show and did all the leg work while Adam made the final decisions). He was very knowlegeable and kept everybody straight. I just thought it was funny to see him in that scene.

Variety.com - Thesps race to NASCAR pic

Variety.com - Thesps race to NASCAR pic

Ferrell, Reilly, Duncan in gear for Sony laffer

Sacha Baron Cohen, John C. Reilly, Michael Clarke Duncan and Gary Cole are joining Will Ferrell in Sony's untitled NASCAR comedy, directed by Adam McKay.
Production begins next month.

Pic is the story of Ricky Bobby (Ferrell), a go-for-broke race car driver, who in races either finishes first or doesn't finish at all. Unhappy with these results, Bobby's team owner brings over Jean Girard (Baron Cohen), a French Formula One driver, who quickly becomes Bobby's biggest rival.

Reilly will play Cal Naughton Jr., Bobby's boyhood friend who teams up with him to form Thunder and Lightning, the most feared racing duo in NASCAR.

Duncan will play Lucius Washington, Bobby's crew chief.

Cole will play Reese Bobby, Ricky's estranged father who comes back into his life.

Jimmy Miller and Judd Apatow are producing. Ferrell and McKay exec produce.

Cohen, most familiar as the dimwitted Rastafarian talkshow host on HBO's "Da Ali G Show," recently lent his voice to DreamWorks AnimationDreamWorks Animation's "Madagascar."

Reilly currently stars in Disney's horror pic "Dark Water" with Jennifer Connelly. He's also in Robert Altman's bigscreen adaptation of Garrison Keillor's "A Prairie Home Companion."

Duncan, who starred in Dimension's "Sin City" with Bruce Willis, will next be seen in "D.E.B.S.," directed and written by Angela Robinson.

Cole, whose credits include DreamWorks' "The Ring Two" and Fox's "Dodgeball," recently wrapped "Crazy in Love" with Josh Harnett for Millennium Films.


Will Andy Richter and John C.Reilly

This is right after the Victory Lane scene and even though its out of focus, thats Andy Richter in the middle in green. Will is on the left in white and John is on the right in red.

18k fresnel

This is a close up of the big boy, with gels and screens, For the Victory Lane scene-camera right.

October 6, 2005

Will and kids

Here we're about to shoot a scene with Gary Cole (standing behind Will in light green) and Will (in blue) and the kids. Gary Cole is lounging on the hood of an old Chevelle drinking a beer after the race. My car actually might be in this scene, it is right behind that silver Towncar.

Sasha and Will

This scene looks like its going to be pretty funny. I won't give it away but Will and Sasha are sliding into the finish line. And there I am (taking the picture) being an extra for these scenes in the main grandstands.

Gary Cole

Sorry bout the smallness, but I didn't wanna interrupt Mr. Cole while he was rehersing so I got this shot of him. I stood in for him all morning at the fence. It was so windy that the wardrobe lady had to keep putting a jacket on him between takes. I have to say, out of all the actors there this week, he was the one I like the most, and was looking forward to seeing, and I actually got to say something to him and I stood in for him for all his scenes in Talladega.

October 4, 2005

The chair

This is Michael Clark Duncan's chair and the Shooting Title for the movie (High, Wide, and Handsome). I got to talk to Mr. Duncan once today. He was sitting on top of a mechanic's trailer for a scene in the pit and he stayed up there even when the director said that he could come down and rest and let a stand-in take his place. So, I said, "Your a real trooped staying up there!" and he said "Thanks!" -)

18k Fresnel Light at the Pit

This is some of the lighting people setting up a HUGE 18k and 12k Fresnel lamp. For those of you who don't know what this is: An 18k is used to overpower the sun in an outdoor scene and a 12k can keep the clouds from interfering with your Close Up shot (the same power as the sun). I accidently stood downwind of the 18k and there was so much heat coming out of vents that I had to move to a sunlit area to get cool. It was about 85-90 degrees today at noon.

The Director's tent

Got some early morning sun coming through on this one. Anyways... This is the director's tent where Adam (McKay) and all the important people, including most of the actors hung out. And all the Stand-Ins got to hang out right behind the tent all day. Oh yea, that guy in orange in the middle is Will Ferrell and right in front of him, just out of view is Adam McKay and John C. Reilly, who BTW is pretty hilarious. I expected him to be pretty straight forward kidof serious, considering all the roles that he's played before: (The Aviator, Magnolia, Thin Red Line, and Hoffa) but then I remembered Boogie Nights, and Whats Eating Gilbert Grape? He had everyone in stitches today with his redneck southern accent.

Panavision 35mm

This is the "A" Camera used on set today. Its a Panavision PFX-P Platinum Panaflex® 35mm camera on a nice Chapman dolly. I caught one of the loaders loading film this morning.

The Green Screen

This was a shot being set up with a huge green screen, that will be used to show an alternate view of the Talladega crowd, since there wasn't a soul at Talladega today besides us.

Got the callback!

Finally got the callback yesterday from the casting director. Looks like I'm going to be a "pit crew member" today. My friend Eric and I have to be at the Talladega Speedway at 5:30am, so I'm leaving right now. Stay tuned for pics!

October 3, 2005

Still Waiting

Well, I'm still waiting for the call from the casting director of "The Untitled Will Ferrell Racing Movie"... Apparently they didn't need many extras at Talladega this weekend because of the crowd at the race, but my father in law Chuck, played a photographer and a pit crew chief on Saturday and today. The rumor is that they are going to call in a few more extras on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday for some possible crowd scenes and maybe a bar scene. Chuck said that he saw Molly Shannon (SNL) and talked to Will about baseball in between scenes. He also saw John C. Reilly, Sacha Baron Cohen and Michael Clarke Duncan.

Keep your fingers crossed for me guys!

October 1, 2005

Welcome to CASPIAN

But I love my CVS card!!!

Welcome to CASPIAN: "CASPIAN was created to oppose a disturbing trend in the supermarket industry -- 'club' or 'loyalty' schemes. Here's how they work: Shoppers provide their name, address, phone number, and in many cases, their driver's license number, social security number, and demographic information to the store. In exchange, they are issued a numbered plastic card with a barcode on the back.

Every time they shop at the store they are encouraged to use the card so that a permanent record can be made of what they buy. In exchange for providing personal data to the store and allowing themselves and their purchases to be monitored, shoppers receive discounts on selected items as a reward for their 'loyalty.'

Though supermarkets are touting these discounts as the greatest thing that ever happened to consumers, the fact is that discounts have been around for a long time -- they used to be called 'sales' and did not require people to sign away their privacy with numbered registration cards.

Our Purpose
Many of us are uneasy, puzzled, and downright angry that supermarkets seem so anxious to register shoppers. We feel that obtaining a basic survival item such as food should not require the use of a number. We feel that information about intimate details of our lives, such as the very food we put into our mouths, should not be stored in a computer database and subject to scrutiny. If you agree with us, and want to stop corporations from strong-arming us into accepting these abuses, then you've come to the right place. "

September 28, 2005

Another Paparrazi Shot

Hundreds of cameras were flashing as well as video and TV crews, and I got THIS close with my phone as he came by to sign autographs. I felt like a real paparrazi!

September 27, 2005

Vince and Carrie

No vince, you can't have her! Stay away from my wife!

(Its a little blurry but yea, that's my wife Carrie on the right.)

Vince Vaughn

After the show Vince patiently signed autographs and took pictures with those crazy enough to hang out by the nice PROVOST busses that they use for the tour.

Vince Vaughn's Wild West Comedy Show

Well, at the last minute, we decided to go to this tonight. It was totally worth the money! All the comedians were hilarious and he featured Peter Billingsley (best friend and star of A Christmas Story) and Keir O'Donnell (Todd Cleary from Wedding Crashers) in some improve and live acting of some scenes from an After School Special he did with Billingsley in the early 80s and a scene from Wedding Crashers with O'Donnell. Try to catch this if it comes to your city.

Fw:how not to interview

This guy came to interview today at the Cheesecake factory... Try some socks next time buddy! I had to do a little sneaking to take this pic but it was worth it.

September 25, 2005

Playing with the 16mm

This is one of the guys shooting with our instructors looking on (Jim on the right).

This was our instructor (I believe his name was Jim Chressanthis) he was very helpful and a good teacher. Here we are about to shoot a close up of a couple talking.

Aaaand action!

Here we are "slating" a scene thats about to be shot. The girl walks up to a guy thats sitting down and starts talking. The cool thing about it is that Kodak is going to process this and transfer it to DVD and we all get a copy to see what we shot and how good film looks compared to video.

Learning Film

Our AATON A-Minima 16mm with FUJINON zoom lens that we used to film our scenes. We had a 200 ft can (which went by really quick actually) and we learned alot about 16mm cameras and lenses and matte boxes and film... oh my!

September 24, 2005

THE PANEL SATURDAY

This is one of the panels that I went to today about "How to audition actors". A few of the directors of some of the features took questions and did some fake auditions with some actors that were there. The 2 on the right are the director (blue hat) of "The Unseen", Lisa France and the star, Phillip Block.

SIDEWALK

At the alabama theater on Saturday.

I worked all day today at the festival. We drove around in a golf cart carrying precious supplies, and cargo to our venues then we ate lunch and put up some posters. If I wasn't so tired all day, I would have had more fun, but I only got 4 hours sleep last night, but after my shift we got to see some movies. William showed up with Nathan, Chris and Joey. They had a great short in one of the "Alabama Shorts" blocks. Funny stuff guys!

Well, lotsa cool stuff happening today. I'm gonna shoot some film on a 16mm today thanx to Kodak and John C. Rielly is going to be here tonight to recieve an award of some kind... I'll try to get a paparratzi shot if I can.

September 22, 2005

Storm Donations Found at Official's Home - Yahoo! News

Aaaand just a little more corruption and selfishness from the local government....

Storm Donations Found at Official's Home - Yahoo! News

WorldNetDaily: AOL poll: President slays mayor on storm

Can we stop the Bush bashing? How can you blame the president when the local govenment was so incompentent?

WorldNetDaily: AOL poll: President slays mayor on storm
As debate continues to rage over government response to Hurricane Katrina, the public clearly thinks New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin – not President Bush – is the one to blame, according to a new online poll by America Online.

September 21, 2005

Things that make you go hmmm...


Testimony about Able Danger is being blocked by Pentegon officials... What's going on here? What are we hiding? Is this a partisan attempt to keep the blame on the Bush administration? From what I understand the testimony would change the timeline of "what did we know, when did we know it?" back to the Clinton administration. Of course this means that the 9/11 Commision reports are fiction. Also as Michael Savage pointed out today, why is the media being so quiet about this? I even heard that CSPAN is convinently refusing to air the hearings...

I really don't care who's to blame here. I just want this investigated and FIXED so no more American lives have to be lost. Borders and Communication. Two things a country needs to keep intact.

Its RITA...


Lets keep Texas in our prayers this week:

Thoughts from the Head of a Soon-to-be-Wed

Here's my friend Valerie' blog:

Thoughts from the Head of a Soon-to-be-Wed

On the line

derek and steven bored on a wednesday afternoon at the cheesecake.

VZWPIX.COM

September 16, 2005

Film Festivals and News

This is the Alabama Film Office Website's official casting call press release page. Aparantly extras are still needed! Check it out!

Current Alabama Casting Calls

Wheres my couch?!?!?

Well, I was supposed to get my new couch yesterday but the 18 wheeler couldn't get up our hill and I wasn't home, so ... they had to take it back to Atlanta and rescedule >-(. Oh well, its all good in da hood, except for my living room is torn up and... I DONT HAVE A COUCH!

September 15, 2005

Untitled Will Ferrell NASCAR Comedy Begins Principal Photography in Charlotte, NC

Untitled Will Ferrell NASCAR Comedy Begins Principal Photography in Charlotte, NC: " John C. Reilly and Sacha Baron Cohen Co-Star for
Director Adam McKay

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Sept. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Principal photography begins
today in Charlotte, NC on Columbia Pictures' Untitled Will Ferrell NASCAR
Comedy directed by Adam McKay from a screenplay by Ferrell and McKay. Set in
the high-octane world of NASCAR racing, the comedy is produced by Jimmy Miller
and Judd Apatow, with David Householter serving as executive producer.
Untitled Will Ferrell NASCAR Comedy tells the story of NASCAR stock car
racing sensation Ricky Bobby (Will Ferrell) whose 'win at all costs' approach
has made him a national hero. He and his loyal racing partner, childhood
friend Cal Naughton Jr. (John C. Reilly), are a fearless duo -- dubbed
'Thunder' and 'Lightning' by their fans for their ability to finish so many
races in the #1 and #2 positions, with Cal always in second place. When a
flamboyant French Formula One driver, Jean Girard (Sacha Baron Cohen),
challenges the 'Thunder' and 'Lightning' for the supremacy of NASCAR, Ricky
Bobby must face his own demons and fight Girard for the right to be known as
racing's top driver.
Gary Cole, Michael Clarke Duncan, Leslie Bibb and Jane Lynch head a
supporting cast. Other key contributors include cinematographer Oliver Wood,
production designer Clayton Hartley and costume designer Susan Matheson.
Untitled Will Ferrell NASCAR Comedy is directed and co-written by Adam
McKay (Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy), who authored the screenplay
with co-writer Will Ferrell. Jimmy Miller (Kicking & Screaming) and Judd Apatow (The 40 Year Old Virgin) are the producers and David Householter (JustLike Heaven) is the executive producer.

JoBlo.com Movie News: Ferrell pic gets cast

Another good article about Talladega Nights.

JoBlo.com Movie News: Ferrell pic gets cast

September 10, 2005

Four Funny Guys Join Ferrell's Race Comedy

A good Rotten Tomatoes article about Talladega Nights, probably the most up to date:

Four Funny Guys Join Ferrell's Race Comedy

Will Ferrell's 'Talladega Nights' For Columbia

This is probably the most informative article out on Talladega Nights right now. (There's really not alot of info out...)

Will Ferrell's 'Talladega Nights' For Columbia

SoYouWanna be a movie extra?

This is a great easy to read article about what extras do and why...

SoYouWanna be a movie extra?

The phone call...


So, I got a phone call today... But this wasn't just any phone call. It was a call from the casting director from Columbia/Sony's new movie (tenatively titled) Talladega Nights, starring Will Ferrell (of Saturday Night Live) and directed by Adam McKay and the same team that did Anchorman. They chose me to be an extra! I don't know exactly what I'll be doing, but I hope I can meet some people and maybe actually get some screen time! There are rumored to be tons of cameos as well, just like in Anchorman. I can't give anything away yet though, just in case. So, I'll be off to Talladega for shooting on October 1st and 2nd at 5am! I'm so pumped! I'll post more info as the time approaches and I'll be sure to snap some pics with my phone (when I'm allowed of course). I'll blog some articles about the movie next.

September 8, 2005

One giant leap for mankind...



I think I've taken a baby step closer to my goal today. I attended a "Train the Trainer" class at work to become a Server Trainer. Besides the boring classes, we had a catered lunch and free Snickers minis. I aced the open book test (yea, it was tough) and got paid 10$/hour for it (which I won't ever see because it is taken out of my back taxes, which is a whole nother subject entirely...grrr). But yea, I'm a Server Trainer now at the Cheesecake Factory!

As usual I snapped a few pics at the class today:
Ashley Winkles (or just "Winkles" or "Twinkles" or "Twinkie") a little miniature Southern Belle and Stacy sittin' on the couch in the lobby at break time.

Then theres:
Donna, Pam, and Connie all dressed up today in the classroom.

Lobby

Ashley and stacy at lunch time.

girls in class

Donna pam and connie.

At formagios

September 7, 2005

days of boredom


I found some interesting facts about the Katrina respose below.

Also took some new pics of some of the more "kookie" people at work (you know who you are). I think I only made about 80 bucks all day out on the front patio. Oh well i got caught up on our bills today and boughts some home improvement crap at Home Dept like a shelf and a faucet sprayer thingy... (I told you this was boring).

Fred made fun of me as usual, and Miles stole my table (but I forgave him... I guess). Jackie looked like a lioness with her hair down. (I... don't really know what that means).

I think we're headed to Formagio's to sit on the patio for a while on a boring Wednesday night. I'll post something from there in a minute.

Thanx to all the people that I gave those little papers to tonight for checking out my blog.
Leave me a message if you get a chance, or heck, just go ahead and subscribe to it!

Hollywood Crowds Into New Orleans

A great article from newsmax:
Hollywood Crowds Into New Orleans: "Truth Be Told
A few facts are in order:
President Bush declared Louisiana a disaster area two days before the hurricane struck the New Orleans area.
President Bush urged New Orleans Mayor C. Ray Nagin and Louisiana Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco to order the mandatory evacuation that was issued on Sunday, August 28.
First responders to a disaster are always state and local emergency agencies. FEMA is there to supplement the state and local activities.
The hurricane threatened an area as large as 90,000 square miles covering three states. Immediate relief could not possibly have been delivered to all the places that required attention.
An AP photo showed a large fleet of New Orleans buses soaking in six feet of water. The mayor apparently had the means to evacuate many of the folks who ended up stranded at the Superdome and the convention center.
FEMA began its activities immediately, not expecting the magnitude of the flooding, the non-response at the city and state level, and the anarchy that resulted.
The local and state governments had rehearsed for a different scenario. Disaster drills in New Orleans had taken place, but with a false assumption that the levees would hold.
Both the law and protocol prohibit the president from ordering military troops into a state without a formal request to do so from the governor of the affected state."

�Gilligan� star Bob Denver dies at age 70 - TELEVISION - MSNBC.com

I know this happened yesterday but I forgot to post it:

�Gilligan� star Bob Denver dies at age 70 - TELEVISION - MSNBC.com

Connie

Connie being goofy...

jackie fred cato

Jackie fred and cato from work!

New Orleans sum up


I think this article sums up my feelings about the New Orleans issue and if you notice it has nothing to do with race.

An Unnatural Disaster: A Hurricane Exposes the Man-Made Disaster of the Welfare State by Robert Tracinski Sep 02, 2005

It has taken four long days for state and federal officials to figure out how to deal with the disaster in New Orleans. I can't blame them, because it has also taken me four long days to figure out what is going on there. The reason is that the events there make no sense if you think that we are confronting a natural disaster.
If this is just a natural disaster, the response for public officials is obvious: you bring in food, water, and doctors; you send transportation to evacuate refugees to temporary shelters; you send engineers to stop the flooding and rebuild the city's infrastructure. For journalists, natural disasters also have a familiar pattern: the heroism of ordinary people pulling together to survive; the hard work and dedication of doctors, nurses, and rescue workers; the steps being taken to clean up and rebuild.
Public officials did not expect that the first thing they would have to do is to send thousands of armed troops in armored vehicle, as if they are suppressing an enemy insurgency. And journalists--myself included--did not expect that the story would not be about rain, wind, and flooding, but about rape, murder, and looting.
But this is not a natural disaster. It is a man-made disaster.
The man-made disaster is not an inadequate or incompetent response by federal relief agencies, and it was not directly caused by Hurricane Katrina. This is where just about every newspaper and television channel has gotten the story wrong.
The man-made disaster we are now witnessing in New Orleans did not happen over the past four days. It happened over the past four decades. Hurricane Katrina merely exposed it to public view.
The man-made disaster is the welfare state.
For the past few days, I have found the news from New Orleans to be confusing. People were not behaving as you would expect them to behave in an emergency--indeed, they were not behaving as they have behaved in other emergencies. That is what has shocked so many people: they have been saying that this is not what we expect from America. In fact, it is not even what we expect from a Third World country.
When confronted with a disaster, people usually rise to the occasion. They work together to rescue people in danger, and they spontaneously organize to keep order and solve problems. This is especially true in America. We are an enterprising people, used to relying on our own initiative rather than waiting around for the government to take care of us. I have seen this a hundred times, in small examples (a small town whose main traffic light had gone out, causing ordinary citizens to get out of their cars and serve as impromptu traffic cops, directing cars through the intersection) and large ones (the spontaneous response of New Yorkers to September 11).
So what explains the chaos in New Orleans?
To give you an idea of the magnitude of what is going on, here is a description from a Washington Times story:
"Storm victims are raped and beaten; fights erupt with flying fists, knives and guns; fires are breaking out; corpses litter the streets; and police and rescue helicopters are repeatedly fired on.
"The plea from Mayor C. Ray Nagin came even as National Guardsmen poured in to restore order and stop the looting, carjackings and gunfire....
"Last night, Gov. Kathleen Babineaux Blanco said 300 Iraq-hardened Arkansas National Guard members were inside New Orleans with shoot-to-kill orders.
" 'These troops are...under my orders to restore order in the streets,' she said. 'They have M-16s, and they are locked and loaded. These troops know how to shoot and kill and they are more than willing to do so if necessary and I expect they will.' "
The reference to Iraq is eerie. The photo that accompanies this article shows National Guard troops, with rifles and armored vests, riding on an armored vehicle through trash-strewn streets lined by a rabble of squalid, listless people, one of whom appears to be yelling at them. It looks exactly like a scene from Sadr City in Baghdad.
What explains bands of thugs using a natural disaster as an excuse for an orgy of looting, armed robbery, and rape? What causes unruly mobs to storm the very buses that have arrived to evacuate them, causing the drivers to drive away, frightened for their lives? What causes people to attack the doctors trying to treat patients at the Super Dome?
Why are people responding to natural destruction by causing further destruction? Why are they attacking the people who are trying to help them?
My wife, Sherri, figured it out first, and she figured it out on a sense-of-life level. While watching the coverage last night on Fox News Channel, she told me that she was getting a familiar feeling. She studied architecture at the Illinois Institute of Chicago, which is located in the South Side of Chicago just blocks away from the Robert Taylor Homes, one of the largest high-rise public housing projects in America. "The projects," as they were known, were infamous for uncontrollable crime and irremediable squalor. (They have since, mercifully, been demolished.)
What Sherri was getting from last night's television coverage was a whiff of the sense of life of "the projects." Then the "crawl"--the informational phrases flashed at the bottom of the screen on most news channels--gave some vital statistics to confirm this sense: 75% of the residents of New Orleans had already evacuated before the hurricane, and of the 300,000 or so who remained, a large number were from the city's public housing projects. Jack Wakeland then gave me an additional, crucial fact: early reports from CNN and Fox indicated that the city had no plan for evacuating all of the prisoners in the city's jails--so they just let many of them loose. There is no doubt a significant overlap between these two populations--that is, a large number of people in the jails used to live in the housing projects, and vice versa.
There were many decent, innocent people trapped in New Orleans when the deluge hit--but they were trapped alongside large numbers of people from two groups: criminals--and wards of the welfare state, people selected, over decades, for their lack of initiative and self-induced helplessness. The welfare wards were a mass of sheep--on whom the incompetent administration of New Orleans unleashed a pack of wolves.
All of this is related, incidentally, to the apparent incompetence of the city government, which failed to plan for a total evacuation of the city, despite the knowledge that this might be necessary. But in a city corrupted by the welfare state, the job of city officials is to ensure the flow of handouts to welfare recipients and patronage to political supporters--not to ensure a lawful, orderly evacuation in case of emergency.
No one has really reported this story, as far as I can tell. In fact, some are already actively distorting it, blaming President Bush, for example, for failing to personally ensure that the Mayor of New Orleans had drafted an adequate evacuation plan. The worst example is an execrable piece from the Toronto Globe and Mail, by a supercilious Canadian who blames the chaos on American "individualism." But the truth is precisely the opposite: the chaos was caused by a system that was the exact opposite of individualism.
What Hurricane Katrina exposed was the psychological consequences of the welfare state. What we consider "normal" behavior in an emergency is behavior that is normal for people who have values and take the responsibility to pursue and protect them. People with values respond to a disaster by fighting against it and doing whatever it takes to overcome the difficulties they face. They don't sit around and complain that the government hasn't taken care of them. They don't use the chaos of a disaster as an opportunity to prey on their fellow men.
But what about criminals and welfare parasites? Do they worry about saving their houses and property? They don't, because they don't own anything. Do they worry about what is going to happen to their businesses or how they are going to make a living? They never worried about those things before. Do they worry about crime and looting? But living off of stolen wealth is a way of life for them.
The welfare state--and the brutish, uncivilized mentality it sustains and encourages--is the man-made disaster that explains the moral ugliness that has swamped New Orleans. And that is the story that no one is reporting.
Source: TIA Daily -- September 2, 2005

September 6, 2005

The Dinner Party


Just got back from the dinner party at my friend Josh's (the chef) house. We had a good time... wine, food and friends.
He made this awesome sauce for the chicken that everybody loved. Then we had some good reds that we all brought. I found a nice 1999 Bordeaux at World Market that we all tried. I think we agreed on "smokey, laid back and smooth" as our adjectives of the night. We also had Lindsey's favorite Ravenswood Zinfindel and a decent BV Cabernet.

Pretty good day at work today. Made $130 for lunch (Labor Day rocks!!) so I was ok with not working a double today.
As you can see from the pics below, that's one of my managers Shan and my friend Tracy the hostess. Then below is my friend Jackie. She's a sweet but moody girl -) (J/k Jackie!). I think she was grabbing the tea pitcher that I was going to get. Alrighty off to bed again. More tomorrow.

"I hope tomorrow is like today..."

September 5, 2005

The bottles

Our three bottles. 1999 haut-beausejorsaint-estephe cru bourgeois, 2003 Ravenswood zin, and a 2002 BV cabernet.

Josh the chef

This is josh the chef cooking our dinner

The wine

Yours truely and lindsey tasting the 1999 bordeaux!

My loverly wife carrie!

Shan and tracy

Also at work.

Jackie

MY FRIEND JACKIE FROM WORK.

another exciting day


Well, didn't do much today but rest. Lindsey and Alexis came over and we watched M. Night Shayamalan's Unbreakable, which was cool, then I went to Books A Million and Wal Mart to buy needed supplies and read a little. I'm reading The Rule Of Four by Ian Caldwell and Dustin Thomason. I just started on the first chapter.
As you can see, I took some interesting new pics with my phone today and uploaded one from when we went to Six Flags a few months ago. The gangsta sign that my wife is throwing up is actually the amount of dollars that her cotton candy cost.

Yea, thats an actual unicorn baby there to the side. (no reason)

Looking forward to a cool Labor day tomorrow. Going over for dinner to my friend (other) Josh's for some duck and wine. He's a Chef at McCormicks and Schmicks Seafood Restaurant and going to cullinary school, so he's cookin and we're bringing the wine. What goes good with duck? hmmm... its a richer meat so probably something red... I'll go look it up... yea, just what I thought... Red Bordeaux.

Ok, anyways I found the coolest Internet radio station, now that I have DSL. Its called StreamingSoundtracks.com




Give it a listen! Its all soundtracks all the time with live requests and chat and other cool stuff.

Alrighty, I'm goin to bed... maybe more tomorrow.

Josh

September 4, 2005

Welcome to wineanswers.com, wine home page

I found the answer to my wine pairing with duck question:

wineanswers.com

Yea, so Red Bordeaux it is... (this is getting expensive!)

Josh

Six flags

this is a few months ago at six flags over georgia. carrie lindsey and alex. We had tons of fun that day...

Alex

my friend alex taking time to smell the roses...

LINDSEY

my friend lindsey lounging on old blue

September 3, 2005

What in Job's name is this?


Ok, I cant believe that actually worked! I went outside to my poarch and took a picture of my buddy "Plant" because I was proud of him that he actually grew 3 more branches this summer. and I sent it right to this blog and it automatically posted here! Isn't technology great?!

So, I guess I'll use this Blog to post pics and info about whats going on with me and my friends from my cell phone, (so its kinda real time i guess...) Check back soon for more fun.

Josh

PS. Check out my other cool blog about Google Maps...