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The Fold, the new taqueria and cocktail bar from Bart Barlogie and Wilson Brandt, opened this weekend in Riverdale.
Coming to the Pleasant Ridge Town Center.
Travis McConnell serves up the good stuff at the Bernice Garden Farmers Market.
"Beautiful Uprising" reception tonight, talk by artist Saturday.
Reception for artist is tonight.
I had a nice visit with Arkansas Court of Appeals Judge Rhonda Wood last week. /more/
If you are a beltway Republican, no antidote for the blues matches extended congressional hearings on a real or imagined national horror — that is, if it might heap dishonor on a Democratic administration. If Hillary Clinton will be the dishonoree, so much the better. /more/
Weird day. I've been consumed with Martha Shoffner's favorite pie. Line is open. Finishing up, it's still all Martha all the time:
* MORE QUESTIONS THAN ANSWERS: Will a single federal charge be enough for Martha Shoffner? With conviction, probably, for a 68-year-old woman and a long federal jolt. But what a mess left behind. For example:
1) FREE RENT: FBI recitation said Shoffner lived free in a Little Rock building until 2009 when it was sold (and she went looking for a sugar daddy in the bond business). Lived free? Reported as gift? Gift legal under ethics rule? Who provided the gift? Did they get something in return?
2) CAMPAIGN FINANCE: There's still Shoffner's claim that she spent $900 a month in campaign money on a beatup, aging Ford van rented from a Newport used car lot. Really? Or did it mask a way to tap campaign money?
3) EMPLOYEES: Multiple employees have told me tales today of being dispatched to purchase everything from items for her mother's house to a bacon biscuit for her dog (bacon had to be extra crispy) with office accounts. One employee said she was offered a public pay raise if she'd work outside the office on state time to raise campaign money. Another said she'd told the FBI about campaign contributions missing from reports. Another told me about staff shakedowns to buy gifts for Shoffner, such as a set of golf clubs. Another told of receiving cash payments for doing questionable chores for Shoffner as an employee.
4) THE CANCER: Is Shoffner really believable when she says she shook down ONLY ONE securities dealer for living expenses? Bribery is sort of like eating potato chips, isn't it? Can't live on just one.
5) THE FUTURE: Nobody — nobody — is urging Shoffner to stay and fight. If we can believe the FBI's sworn affidavit, she's admitted taking illegal kickbacks. She'd serve the public, her party and her legal fees by resigning and cutting the best deal possible as quickly as possible and hope her lawyer Chuck Banks can find a way to plead for mercy.
6) IN DEFENSE: Employees — including those sorely disaffected with Shoffner — ascribe some of her problems to mood swings and judgment bordering on delusional. A gambling addiction helped a previous client of Chuck Banks, Lu Hardin, avoid jail time for abuse of public office. Perhaps Shoffner can present a sympathy-inducing defense. Based on early reports, however, she might have a harder time turning out a file folder full of testimonials from friends and co-workers.
7) CO-CONSPIRATOR: Surely we'll know sooner rather than later who wired up to give feds the goods on his/her payments to Shoffner. Surely there'll be consequences for a dishonest securities salesman even if held harmless on federal charges through his immunity deal.
* ELSEWHERE IN THE WORLD: Massive tornado smashed Oklahoma City. A track two miles wide. An elementary school took a direct hit, according to various reports.
* ANOTHER DROPOUT: State Rep. Mary Broadaway of Paragould, who had been considering a race for attorney general, said today that she'd seek re-election instead. "not the time."
Roby Brock will moderate the Google+Hangout on how Arkansas's faring in the Internet economy. The video conference starts streaming at 3:30 p.m. It's part of the Internet Association’s Internet on Main Street tour.
In addition to Boozman and Pryor, participants include...
· Michael Beckerman, President and CEO, The Internet Association
· Susie Marks, Sr. Vice President, Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce
· Mike Abbiatti, Executive Director, Arkansas Research and Education Optical Network
· Lee Renniger, Owner, Rock Appliances and Services
· Jeffrey Hall, Associate Director of National Affairs, Arkansas Farm Bureau
· Matt Price, Founder, Bourbon and Boots
· Ellie Keffler, Vice President of the Associated Student Government, University of Arkansas
Here's what you get when you combine "Rockin' Robin" with "Folsom Prison Blues" and "The Joker." What say you — abomination or finger-snapping good time?
The mash comes courtesy of DJ Faroff.
I'll have more on my impressions on this year's festival tomorrow. In the meantime, here are this year's prize winners.
Oxford American Best Southern Film Award ($10,000 prize money): "Bayou Maharajah"
Heifer International Social Impact Film Award ($10,000 prize money): "These Birds Walk"
Golden Rock Narrative Film: "Short Term 12"
Golden Rock Documentary Film: "Dirty Wars"
Extraordinary Courage in Filmmaking: Jeremy Scahill ("Dirty Wars")
Arkansas Times Audience Award: "Bridegroom"
Made in Arkansas Best Feature: "45 RPM"
Made in Arkansas Best Short: "The Discontentment of Ed Telfair"
Made in Arkansas Best Director: Mark Thiedeman for "Last Summer"
Made in Arkansas Best Actor: Liza Burns in "45 RPM"
World Shorts: "When We Lived in Miami"
A previous version of this post incorrectly listed the World Shorts winner as "When We Live in Miami."
Arkansas is full of talented people, and we ran across yet another one of them last night: the thoroughly-hilarious writer and video blogger Joseph Birdsong. In the video seen above, Birdsong, who was born in Arkansas, schools out-of-staters on some skewed facts about the Natural State, including: "People in Arkansas are born with the ability to recognize 30 different kinds of roadkill based on scent alone," and "The first gay person to ever come to Arkansas was George Takei, and that was because he was forced here to live in an Arkansas Japanese internment camp during World War II." Just remember, he's laughing WITH us, not AT us. Okay, he's laughing AT us as well, but a great sense of humor covers a multitude of sins.
If you're looking for a good laugh, you can check out almost 200 of Birdsong's quirky videos on his Youtube site, cupofjoeshow.com. He's also got a site where he blogs, a very funny Twitter account. and a video blog for My Damn Channel's Answerly page where he talks about sex and relationships.
I am sad and angry about this turn of events. There needs to be a…
>Actually, Sound Policy, they have EVERY LEGAL RIGHT to do so.
I suppose I…
The National Weather Service still predicts a moderate risk of severe storms for southwest Arkansas…
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