Star Date 20180616

Journal Entry

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2018 is turning out to be a pretty good year for films. Although the ones I most recently really liked were actually released in 2017 and are just now getting here: Let the Sunshine In and First Reformed (reviews to follow). After all, Louisville is just a lonely outpost at the edge of civilization. The British have a saying about being posted to such a station: Never drink before dark, but never go to bed quite sober either. Good advice.

PINK HOUSE!

The Story of a Victorian Mansion

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On one fine day in May I was strolling through one of old Louisville’s beautiful “walking courts” with my good friend and trusted side-kick Victoria Mansion. When much to our surprise we came upon a phenomenon down toward the end of the block for which neither of us was fully prepared. A Pink House! Now this wasn’t any ordinary sort of pink house it was an extra fancy with raisins sort of pink house. As a matter of fact, it wasn’t a house at all but a palace.

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What caught our interest was a small gathering on the porch. Everyone had a drink in their hand and seemed to be having a good time. Come on in, they beckoned. Well it was just too hard to resist. Turns out it was an open house put on by a local real estate agency. The old Pink House was for sale!

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Now let me tell you what they had to offer for refreshments: beer, whiskey, two kids of wine, cheese and crackers, and sushi. Well, we came right on in and helped ourselves. We were invited to explore the house which we did.

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A little of the history of the place. The “Pink Palace”, circa 1896, features beautiful period architectural details and a massive turret. The entry foyer and elaborate and ornate staircase are impressive to see as you enter the front door. You will see quarter-sawn “Tiger Oak” floors and woodwork throughout and magnificent stained and leaded glass windows. The “turret” rooms are located on each level of the house are as you might imagine round and filled with light. Great for sitting or reading.

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This glorious mansion began its history as a Gentleman’s Club and Casino for the male residents of St. James Court and Belgravia Court to relax and unwind. They enjoyed a good cigar, brandy, stimulating conversation and cards, as well as other past times including the services of  ladies of the evening.

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The Gentleman’s Club was in existence for only a few years before it was sold to the local chapter of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union who bought the mansion for  their headquarters and promptly painted the red brick structure pink. Hence the “Pink Palace.”

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It is said the Pink House is haunted by a friendly ghost named Aviary.

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He only appears at times of danger to warn the residents…

You can see Aviary in the mirror above the fireplace.

It was on a very merry day in May…..

 

 

 

A COMEDY TONIGHT!

Comedy of Errors

 

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Saw a production of Kentucky Shakespeare’s Comedy of Errors in Central Park last night in Old Louisville. Matt Wallace’s merry band of players brought this hilarious play of mistaken identity to vivid life on the outdoor stage. Even if you don’t understand every single word of the Elizabethan tongue you will have no problem following the action.

Kudos to Matt Wallace for his fine directing and stage blocking. Many scenes were staged to look like paintings or tableaus. And the costumes! Divine. Colorful, flowing, rich, sensuous materials; candy to the eye and music to the ear. All against a color coordinated set dominated by brown with white furniture, windows, doors, and lattice works. Baskets of brightly colored fruits and vegetable accented the tables.

At no time did the action drag. As one character leaves the stage another enters, usually talking.

Really liked the Greek dance at the end.  A nice grace note to end upon.

All in all, it was a Comedy Tonight!

 

MY NEW DIGS

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In a few days I will be moving into my new digs located in Old Louisville. I’ll be moving there from St. Mathews which is in the East end of Louisville and rather tony, if you get my drift. This will be my fourth move since I moved back to Louisville in  2012 maintaining a life long habit of moving every few years.

First I lived in the Highlands, which I loved, then out Westport Road which is even further to the east, and now, finally getting back to my roots and a more urban environment, Old Louisville.

Old Louisville is a historic neighborhood in central Louisville nestled between Downtown Louisville and The University of Louisville. It is the largest preservation district in the United States featuring almost entirely Victorian homes mostly made of brick. With its wide avenues, beautiful treelined streets, and magnificent mansions it is truly a wonder to behold.

Old Louisville also sports a number of fascinating and interesting taverns, bars, and grills, and an odd assortment of restaurants. And I have been having quite a time exploring the area. Here are a few snaps of my new digs, and my new neighborhood.

See you in the hood!

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Mag Bar

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Fourth Street Tavern

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Vis-a-Vis

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Granville Inn

 

Garvin Gate Blues Festival

Photo Essay

The Garvin Gate Blues Festival is held the second weekend in October in historic Old Louisville. It’s a two day festival featuring performers both national and local that celebrates blues music. This event attracts both a multiracial and a multi-generational crowd.  It has a 29 year history and is still going strong.

Featured here is the band Tweed Funk hailing from Milwaukee.

Bikers, Booze, and Blues

Garvin Gate Neighborhood

Pet Friendly

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Tweed Funk

Smokey Holman

Andrew Spada

Eric Madunic

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Dave Schoepke

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A Face in the Crowd

 

Julius Caesar

Shakespeare in the Park

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An excellent production last night of Julius Caesar. It comes at a most propitious moment in time. Lots of parallels to what is going on in our own political landscape. Director Matt Wallace continues to produce some of the most exciting Shakespeare that you are ever likely to see. I have been going to see Shakespeare in the Park since the 1970’s and I can say without reservation that it just keeps getting better and better. The acting is first rate, the direction and staging are superb and the technical aspects such as lighting and sound are first class. Kudos to the costume designer! Kentucky Shakespeare continues to break records for audience attendance. Do yourself a favor and catch one or more of the shows this season. Keep Will Free!

BETH HART IN NASHVILLE

At the Ryman Auditorium

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Beth Hart killed last night (3/10/2017) in Nashville at the storied Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee. Killed in the sense she slaughtered her material and slayed her audience. I have  never seen a performer so committed to her material as Beth Hart. She has a power and a force that will blow you away! She simply gave it all she had. She is one of the best blues singers I have ever heard and she just keeps on getting better.

Beth looked great in a sparkly mini dress and high heel shoes which showed off her toned legs to great effect. She wore sheer nylon stockings with seams down the back. How sexy was that? She must be eating right because her tiny waist, beautiful skin tones, and irrepressible energy were much on display.

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And the music! She has a great band around her including her guitar player who has been with her for 17 years. Beth writes a lot of her own material and there is as story behind each song which she generously shares with the audience before she delivers the goods. The audience loves Beth and she loves them back!

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When she performed the song  California, which is a paean to the one she loves, who should appear from behind the black curtain but her husband, who rushes up behind her and hugs her close and kisses her neck and we are swept up in the moment of an emotional highlight.

Throughout the show and on numerous occasions I was moved to the point of tears and the goose flesh was in motion.

She will be appearing in at the Louisville Palace in Louisville, Kentucky on March 19 as part of the Jimi Hendrix experience. I’ll be there.

 

 

 

I AM NOT YOUR NEGRO

A Movie Review

 

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The movie, I Am Not Your Negro, played to sold out crowds recently at the Speed Cinema here in Derby City. This movie comes at a most propitious moment in time when the American Negro is again under assault by the white ruling class now that the alt-right has taken over the White House.
It is a timely tale told by Samuel L. Jackson in the words of the brilliant novelist James Baldwin in a documentary filmed by Raoul Peck. It has been nominated for an Academy Award for best documentary. The film is based on Baldwin’s work, Remember This House, which details the civil rights movement and assassinations of his close friends, Medgar Evers, Malcolm X, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The film expands on the work and brings it up to date to modern times and the Black Lives matter movement.

It is a powerful film well worth seeing.

RESIST

Word of the day: Resist

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Protesters at a Rally for American Values in Louisville, Kentucky

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Protesters at the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, Kentucky

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Greg Fisher, Mayor of Louisville, Kentucky, gave a speech in support of immigrants and refugees, but stopped short of declaring Louisville to be a sanctuary city.