Pooyie! 09.30.2009

Singer-songwriter Drew Landry has angered some in the Cajun pride community by proudly waving the “coonass” banner, but he’s making Cajuns and the rest of us proud by assuming a leadership role in saving the Atchafalaya Basin. Last weekend’s Inherit the Atchafalaya Basin event at Butte La Rose was part clean-up, part concert-fundraiser, and 100 percent great idea. Landry shepherded together some great musicians, environmental activists, skydivers (!), donations from local companies and plenty of good will for the day-long event, and managed to get a sizable amount of garbage out of the basin and into a landfill. That it’s we Acadiana residents depositing the trash in the basin is another story. But if not for the can-do attitude of Landry and the volunteers who turned out Saturday, things could, as they say, be a lot worse. Bon emploi, Drew.

It seemed like a good idea: A locally owned supermarket offering a plenitude of Louisiana products, specialty meats and a hometown atmosphere on Johnston Street in the heart of Lafayette. But less than two weeks ago, the Adrien’s Supermarket in the Grand Marche shopping center hung a sign on the door informing customers it had fallen victim to a slowdown in the local economy. Now, for the umpteenth time in the last two decades, the 22,000-square-foot space is vacant and the Adrien’s on Congress Street once again assumes its role as the only Adrien’s in town. The Adrien’s on Johnston had loyal customers, but evidently not enough of them.

What’s a politician do when asked a question that begs contrition? Answer: Ignore it and trumpet your accomplishments. Only that doesn’t work out quite as well when you’re Congressman Steve King, R-Iowa, and your proudest achievement is voting against aid for natural disaster victims. In a generally mundane “meet the lawmaker” interview with The Hill, King, a four-term lawmaker, was asked what vote he would like to redo. “I’d answer that question another way,” he responded. “Probably the singular vote that stands out that went against the grain, and it turns out to be the best vote that I cast, was my ‘no’ vote to the $51.5 billion to [Hurricane] Katrina. That probably was my best vote. But as far as doing something different again, I don’t know.” Probably too much to hope that King would ever want to redo that answer.