Revitalizing Lafayette's urban core, a terrible crawfish season and a U.S. congressman who will brook no oil portraits ...
Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014
Revitalization of Lafayette's urban core got a shot in the arm at the end of January when UL Lafayette's School of Architecture and Design, in partnership with Habitat for Humanity, unveiled plans to build a "pocket neighborhood" of small, energy-efficient homes along with a pavilion and park on less than two acres of land in the McComb-Veazey neighborhood adjacent to downtown. The roughly 1,200-square-foot, three-bedroom/two-bath homes are being designed by grad students and will go up this summer with Habitat crews manning the hammers and circular saws.
That icy, sleety arctic weather that shut down schools in Lafayette for four days in late January - and a generally colder-than-usual winter - is promising an insidious effect on South Louisiana culture: It delivered a major blow to the crawfish crop. The Associated Press reported that farmers are ruing their iced-over ponds and warning of tough times ahead for écrevisse aficionados. Cold water delays the growth of crawfish. The net result for our Lenten and Easter crawfish boils: shrimpy crawfish in short supply. But this is Acadiana, so demand will not be diminished. That means sky-high prices, too. Enjoy.
U.S. Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-Baton Rouge, will not stand for oil portraits. Nor will he sit for them. In an effort to burnish an otherwise undistinguished tenure in the U.S. House of Representatives and make it a contest with U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu this fall, Cassidy has come up with the EGO Act, AKA the Eliminating Government-Funded Oil-Paintings Act. It not only screams to the Federal Department of Acronyms, "Boys, y'all better step up your game," nor does it simply have the Louisiana State Office for the Prevention of Hyphen Abuse fidgety, it most importantly addresses a fundamental crisis of entitlement among those within the Beltway: elected officials and cabinet-level bureaucrats sitting for taxpayer-funded portraits. Not in latex, watercolor, charcoal or graphite pencil. In oil!