Monday, July 09, 2012

Monday breakfast links

So I'm sitting here this morning drinking coffee out of my Bonaparte Retreat mug in honor of Ben Hendricks, who died July 1 at the Veterans Administration hospital in Iowa City of esophageal cancer. Not that I knew him, but like a good many diners Iowan and otherwise I've been there when he worked the room at the Retreat, an iconic --- if I can get away with using that word --- restaurant in a three-story 1878 brick mill right down along the Des Moines River in Van Buren County's Bonaparte. It's always been a lunch or supper destination when headed one way or the other between here and the Mississippi, and sometimes just a destination when I wanted to drag guests off to visit the villages of Van Buren County.

The Register's Kyle Munson wrote a little tribute in Sunday's Register, which you can find by following this link. I hope it works --- I'm not going to test it because to do that I'd have to use up more of my quota of free July Register stories. Munson also blogged here about Hendricks' death a few days ago. There's a brief obituary and photo here, in The Fairfield Ledger.

The Retreat opens for business again today after being closed last week. If you've not been there, go. And spend some time roaming around the town (the smallest Main Street Community in the United States with a Riverfront District on the National Register of Historic Places). Stop at Bentonsport, Keosauqua, Cantril and more of the villages, too.

Two pieces I liked about Anderson Cooper's understated exit last week from that glass closet of his.

First from Paul Brandeis Rausenbush via Huffington Post: "Fact is...Anderson Cooper Thanks God He's Gay."  Here's a little of it: "Anderson Cooper thanked God for his ability to love another person of the same gender, and thanks God every day for the love he has in his life. In his easy manner, Mr. Cooper is saying his sexuality is a divine gift, and that he is thankful to God that he was so wonderfully made. That's some beautiful and powerful stuff."

And from James Alexander Langteaux a The Washington Post: "Anderson Cooper is Gray." "And that is where the headline is in Anderson's recent coming out. He is choosing to open himself up and offer the rest of the world an opportunity to know more of who he is. He is choosing to identify with a group of people who have been marginalized, misunderstood and judged (and that is really what Jesus did when he walked this earth --- not comparing Anderson to Jesus, I'm just saying!) That is the news."

Here's a link to the original Anderson Cooper/Andrew Sullivan piece at The Daily Beast.

My idea of eye candy involves an old house, or two. And for some reason, I know a good deal about several Louisiana plantation homes, including Bocage --- above --- located along the Mississippi between New Orleans and Baton Rouge.  Lavishly restored --- probably beyond the wildest dreams of its builders --- as a bed and breakfast, it not only has its own Web site but also a Facebook page. Check out "gallery" or "photos" on both.

Finally, f you're in the market for a house and have always wanted to live in Glasgow (that's Missouri, north of Interstate 70 and right along the Missouri River about halfway between Kansas City and St. Louis and not that farm from Columbia), how about the James S. Thomson mansion --- only $399,000? It's quite a house. Here's the Zillow listing, but even better --- here's how the owners are presenting the house on Facebook. Again, it's all about "photos."

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Cristeen said...
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