The name is “falling in love again.” Maybe the rain had something to do with it. I started the sketch not long after breakfast at Hoover’s Home Cooking, catfish etouffee on biscuits, which was a great way to start the day.
Hoover’s is definitely one of the best restaurants in Austin. It’s food that’s good for the soul, not just soul food and southern style cuisine taken to a new level. When I was recovering from cancer and chemo, Hoover Alexander’s cooking helped bring me back to life by making me want to eat again. It’s not that I didn’t have the will to do so, but it was physically, mechanically very difficult. If you’ve ever had extensive surgery on your mouth and throat and neck, followed by intensive radiation therapy and six months of chemo, you’ll know what I mean. Anyway, Hoover is one of my favorite people.
After that, I did my research at the Center for American History for the Lubbock book and also dug up some great new clips on some terrible people — thugs, pimps, dope dealers, killers, etc. Great stuff. While waiting for the stack of old Texas Monthly magazines I had requested, I drew this sketch and decided I liked it. The first one wasn’t any good. After finishing up at the history center, I came back home to Lois and Dashiell and enjoyed the rain. Dinner at the Shuck Shack. Oysters Diablo are good there. The bartender poured a pretty good drink, too. First we went to Justine’s, the new French place on East Fifth (way east, 4710 to be exact), but the wait was at least two hours. Too long, but the place looks pretty happening. While watching a very strange World War II film, Arch of Triumph, which stars Ingrid Bergman and Charles Boyer, I did the coloring on this piece. Lewis Milestone directed it and it’s adapted from a story by Erich Maria Remarque, the same team that did “All Quiet on the Western Front.”
I didn’t realize until just now that there was a remake of “Arch of Triumph” as well as “All Quiet on the Western Front.” Ernest Borgnine is in it. When we lived in LA, Lois was driving down Ventura Blvd. one day and saw Ernest filling up his Rolls Royce at a self serve gas station.
Borgnine is a hell of an actor.
When we were in Paris, we spent some time at the Arc de Triomphe. It really is an amazing thing, not to be taken for granted. The bas relief on the sides are very moving. We were there for about an hour, but I could’ve stayed longer. I wanted to know all about each panel, not just the thumbnail story presented there, but all the cultural and historic nuances, the art history, the technical side, everything. Some of the panels made me want to cry.
Next day we went to Musee Picasso. I did cry there. I laughed a lot, too. Guess what, Steve Martin was there. He had an entourage with him and he wore a funny little mustache. Not sure if it was fake or real. It was so perfect you’d think that Picasso was winking at you from somewhere.
Speaking of that feeling, on my last trip to the downtown library, I was relieved to see myself over in the jazz CD section. You see, the last time I was there, I wasn’t there. What I mean is, they had taken down my “READ” poster from last year and put up the new guy. Sarah Bird was still in the same old place, but I was nowhere. No, I didn’t complain to anyone. But then I went back, and there I was, with a window view and everything, right above the jazz rack. That’s cool.