Thursday, November 29, 2007


We were interviewed on Nov. 29th by Peter Walsh, the host of Oprah's radio station, Radio XM 156 (Channel 1807 on Direct TV) about our reasons for coming down to New Orleans and volunteering. It's amazing to hear how they can wheedle and squeeze the cheese out of you. I cringe to hear what I said. But if you want to listen, it will be playing four or five times throughout the day Dec. 14th, and will be available online after that. To hear it you might need to sign up for the 30-day free trial of XM Radio Online, which you can do here. I'll put a direct link up here to the interview segment when it's available.

Our other media appearances coming up include articles written by me and Petra and photos by me for the Hands On New Orleans newsletter and for the Preservation Channel's website, as well as bit parts in a Hollywood reality TV show. No joke. One of our friends is being followed by a film crew, so we're in the background. We'll let you know more about it when we can (for instance, when they come up with a name for the show).

Basketball and Travelocity

Yesterday, Travelocity and their corporate partners (esp. Mastercard) sent 200 volunteers and a lot of money to help us fix up one of the terribly dilapidated New Orleans public schools. Petra was in charge of the murals. They looked fantastic. I was in charge of the basketball court and 25 volunteers to help make it happen. After days of hard prep work (see "dug a hole" below), the volunteers finally descended. It's pretty incredible how much work 200 people can do in one day, given good leadership. And it's pretty incredible how much mischief 25 corporate dudes can get into given about 30 seconds of inattention, 900 pounds of quick-dry cement, and a basketball. It was about 100 times harder than babysitting toddlers. It all ended well, with no injuries, very little poisoning (remarkable given the death mold, petroleum clay, and construction chemicals), and the whole school looking great. The kids and teachers are psyched. If you want to know more about the basketball court installation process, see the captions on the photos linked below.

Since so many of you have been asking, the weather has been absolutely gorgeous. 75 or warmer and sunny almost every day. I have a bit of a sunburn.

Another corporate project tomorrow. Construction. Phillip Morris. I.E. the tobacco devil. Rich devil, and giving us a lot of money. But still the devil. This should be fun.

Sorry for the lack of depth and meaning in this report, but I'm exhausted.