Monday, August 31, 2009

Oh, This? I Made It In My Shop.

My dad was a carpenter.

Then a cabinetmaker.

For a long time he retro-fitted drug stores and then he built bars.

Charleston was officially "dry" in the 1950s but Dad created a LOT of backbars, curved bars with "nosing"* and even padded banquettes.

In his "illegal" wood working shop.

Ansonborough was a bit run down in those days and money was tight.

The fact that my Dad was cutting wood, hammering and then sticking finished products out the front window to get them to his truck was sorta overlooked.

My younger brother is shown helping Dad because he didn't scoot away in time.

All three boys knew the sound of that truck and it usually meant unloading many, many long pieces of wood or sheets of splintery plywood.

My older brother is totally absent on this particular "Delivery" day.

As soon as I set down my camera, I joined my brother in the back of the truck to hold on to things as we delivered this piece over the old Cooper River Bridge. The very narrow 2-lane Grace Memorial.

Haven't seen shots like this in any coffee table books about Charleston.

(*Nosing is the raised portion along the front of a bar top that keeps your sleeves off anything spilled on the bar.)

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

My Mom Raised A US Marine...

One of the sites I follow online has items of interest to Marines and former Marines.

It just announced a contest to pick the best submitted photo of a Marine and his/her mother.

Here's mine.

That yard-of-ale glass is almost as tall as she is.

Now, please understand...Mom doesn't drink. She and I were out for a drive a few years ago and I stopped by my favorite bar Back Stage Deli in North Charleston.

Mom's a good natured person and posed with me. We got her a glass of tea.

The same Marine Corps site offers an array of t-shirts and I've bought a few with the Globe and Anchor symbol.

I see there is one now that states "Not as lean/Still as mean/Always a Marine."

It comes in XXL and XXXL sizes.

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

From A Nigerian Bank ? Win A Lottery?

Wow. It sure looks "official."

It's one of those envelopes that has printed on the front "See other side for opening instructions."

On the back are arrows pointing out that you have to "remove side edges first."

So you carefully fold both ends and slowly tear ... it COULD contain a check and you don't want to rip that.

OK, back to the printed instructions:

"Then fold and tear this stub along perforation."

There even is a drawing of an envelope with torn edges marked 1,2 and 3.

Oh yeah, this is VERY important. Be careful now.

Gulp. Sweaty palms and shaking fingers.

Don't fool around. It's marked "Time Sensitive" for Pete's sake.

Warning: $2,000 Fine, 5 Years Imprisonment. Or Both. Seriously!

Maybe I should have a neighbor come in to witness that I am doing this right?

OK, here's Step #3...the perforated part across the top.

Oh. That's it?

The warranty on my 2006 car is about to expire? I can call Mon-Friday 8am to 7:30pm. They're open on Saturday from 9am to 2pm to "better assist me."

I can extend coverage for an additional 150,000 miles. Yes, there is a fee.

No check inside.

(Click on the image to see details and read the instructions)

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Friday, August 21, 2009

An Open Door Policy...

Hmmm..come up with a monthly theme for a bunch of photographers.

21st Century Photography Group meets the 2nd Wednesday of the month and we have a Show & Tell session each time.

New members, old-timers and wannabe photographers like to see their work projected big, talk about why and how they shot it and hear feedback from their peers.

Each month we can choose to all shoot the same topic and see what comes up. I announced the optional theme September 9 will be "DOORS."

This shot was taken while a meeting was being set up in Myrtle Beach.

Actually, it's more of an "Open Wall Policy."

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Monday, August 17, 2009

Breaking A Sweat...

In West Ashley, a few doors up the street from Home Team Bar-B-Q, there's a small store called The Taco Spot.

I heard the fish tacos there were nice and fresh (and they were!) but I asked if there might be some hot sauce to give a little "kick" to the side of guacamole.

This is all they had to offer.

I had seen their stand down at Freshfield Village when I attended several Blues concerts on the green but had not stopped by to taste their tacos.

Wish I had now.

Wonder if they pack ALL these up when they go on the road?

(Click on the picture to read the labels. Yikes.)

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

Nice Kitty, Kitty....

The world-famous San Diego Zoo. In the 1960s.

My newspaper, The Evening Tribune, assigned me to take my camera and roam the very large zoo one night to take pictures of "nocturnals."

These were the animals that were quiet and dormant in daylight and became alert - and hungry - at night.

A pleasant surprise was this warm, "cuddly" bunch of tigers. Like most cats, they slept a lot during the day .....and also slept most of the night.

Obviously they were aroused by a bright light that was not part of the normal routine.

This photograph became very popular after it appeared in the paper. People paid a small fee for copies and the paper was happy to send them out.

I was just happy there was a wide moat between me and the cats that night.

Too bad it wasn't in color.

(*I had to look it up: this would be called a "streak" or "ambush" of tigers.)

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Sunday, August 09, 2009

Yes, LOCAL Shrimp.....

It's Summertime and the livin' is easy.

Charleston restaurants always tell you when they proudly serve fresh LOCAL shrimp.

You might say "bragging."

As you look this over, I know you're calculating.

Yes, that is a POUND of peel 'n' eat Lowcountry neighborhood shrimp. For each of us.

Any fresher and I'd still be holding the dripping net.

The Noisy Oyster bought an old Applebee's on the corner of Market and East Bay and present visitors (and residents) yet another fresh reason to come downtown.

Arriving just before 8:00pm on a balmy Friday night, we were told there'd be a short wait for a table. Makes sense... height of season and all. Carriages and tourists wandered by and about 15-20 minutes later we were sipping a cold beer.

The server got a break as he started his spiel. He suggested we start with an order of fried green tomatoes and how great the rock shrimp taste...we stopped him and said we live here and just wanted a pound of peel & eat.

He smiled and said "Surely, NOT one pound to share."

Good food and good service.

And a good tip.

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Wednesday, August 05, 2009

The Charleston Classic Cookie Caper...

So, about a year ago, I was invited to a judging to select a new flavor ice cream.

Not as a judge, just as a blogger who would probably write about Circa 1886, the restaurant sponsor, which I did.

Well, I had a grand time and requested they invite me to food events in the future. They did.

It was "If Charleston Were A Cookie, What would it Be?" this time.

The winner, Nona Pontiff, came up with the concept of her - soon to be famous - "Polite Palmetto w/sweet tea glaze."

Man, that was a good cookie!

Oops. I guess I should have jotted down all the stuff that made her tasty entry the big winner. I understand the restaurant will include it as a dessert treat this Christmas.

I was reaching for more cookies instead. All the finalists were on the tray and 2nd place and even 3rd was good too. I would have tried an Honorable Mention.

Nona told the judges she just thought that a Charleston-theme cookie should include sweet tea. I do remember it had a familiar taste.

Nona said she experimented using a sweet tea vodka but instead went back to the lowcounty family favorite.

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Saturday, August 01, 2009

Charleston Entry In International Photo Contest

Dave Earley won the Charleston portion of the July 18th 2nd annual World Wide Photo Walk. Dave was visiting from his home in Lake Worth, Florida.

This is Dave's winning entry taken Saturday July 18 at the Carolina Polo & Carriage Company, 16 Hayne Street. He calls it simply "Waiting For A Carriage."

More than 32,000 photographers in 900 cities around the world took part in the 2nd annual Scott Kelby Photo Walk competition.

Dave's winning photograph is the Charleston entry and we think he'll do well with his colorful photograph of a Charleston scene.

Members of the 21st Century Photography Group were among the 43 participants who wandered through downtown after starting at Waterfront Park.

The local photography monthly meetings began February 2008 - 2nd Wednesday of the month - and now the group numbers more than 100 members.

Photo Walkabouts are scheduled in advance and the general public is invited to come along.

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