Bert Bartlett — Tale of Two Seasons

Bert Bartlett’s
Tale of Two Seasons: Katrina & A Super Bowl

http://soulsofthesaints.wordpress.com/
published by Write2Grow Publishing

Buy Here: http://www.write2grow.org/bartlett/

I know Bert from a writing group we were in a couple of years ago now. He’s been working on this project for a while, and it is all coming together with an eBook out sometime this month and the print edition available in August.

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Zombie Town:A Documentary Play

Tonight a friend and I took in a play at Le Chat Noir, it was the first time either of us had been to this very awesome theater in the Warehouse District of New Orleans. They’ve been around over 10 years. Everything about the experience was awesome. TWO DOLLAR parking! TWO Dollars, in the lot next to the building. I think that is fairly unheard of anywhere else I’ve been in the city. The doors opened an hour before the show so we each got a drink at the bar. My $8 glass of Amaretto had enough liquor in it to constitute maybe 3 drinks elsewhere, it’s a good think they let you bring your drink with you into the theater.

I’d wanted to be early, because I didn’t know where the theater was and the Internet tickets said General Admission. I wanted to be sure we got a good seat. Turns out we had an assigned table, and as luck would have it, we were seated at the very edge of the stage. We took our seats only mildly worried about whether or not there would be an audience participation portion in the play, they were really good seat at a small table our programs waiting for us.

The play was Zombie Town: A Documentary Play (link to different theater, but better description of play) .The premise of the play was that these five actors where part of a group that had gone to Texas to collect the stories of the survivors from a town that had been attacked by Zombies. They then proceeded to present monologues the the survivors’ own words. In that respect it reminded me a little of the Spoon River Anthology. It was great, funny for the outset. Each actor took on various roles, accents, speech patterns, basic costume elements and the story pieced itself together to it hilarious conclusion. There were references to Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Jaws, and the local theater awards. At the end, the actors took their bows, commented about choking on the Karo syrup, and one of the actress came to our table and personally thanked us for laughing.

I highly recommend Zombie Town: A Documentary Play in New Orleans, held over ’til July 25th or anywhere  if you ever get the chance to see it and Le Chat Noir, if you’ve never been down there before.

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Margaret Haughery (1813 – 1882)

I’ve been captivated by the story of Margaret Haughery (1813-1882), a poor Irish immigrant who worked to feed and provide for the orphans of New Orleans in the mid-to late 1800’s, ever since I read her story in More than Petticoats: Remarkable Louisiana Women by Bonnye E. Stuart.

I can’t really do justice to her story here, so I encourage you to find out more about this dedicated woman. After her husband and child died due to illness, Margaret went to work as a laundress for a hotel in New Orleans. She began give a portion of her earning to the orphanage she passed on the way to work, but the money wasn’t enough. She wanted to do more. Though saving, she was able to start a dairy business that earned enough to make repairs on a building for the orphans. She also started a very successful bakery, pouring those proceeds into care for the orphans of the city.  She build 4 orphanages. So beloved was she for her charity, almost the whole city attended her funeral when she died at age 69.

A statue was built to her. The 1st or 2nd U.S. statue ever dedicated to a woman, there seems to be some debate on this point.  The money for the statue was collected through public subscription after her death.

(click above image for directions to statue)

I love the detail of the chair and shawl. Unfortunately, the faces are sugaring and front has been blackened by weather. The statue is in need of restoration. One of my web searches said that it would take about $40,000 to clean it and stop the marble from deteriorating. I also discovered there is a Facebook group that is trying to spread Margaret’s story.

Information Resources I’ve stumbled across:

Buddy Stall’s New Orleans has a couple paragraphs on Margaret in a section that talks about female statues in the city.

Online Catholic Encyclopedia’s Margaret entry

Margaret Haughery’s Wiki page

I haven’t read this one yet, but it is next on my TBR pile: Margaret, Friend of Orphans By Mary Lou Widmer

The article that mentions restoration.

Info about Margaret Haughery on a site that looks like her story is being turned into a theater production.

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