Sample Saturday, Video Edition: “Down on the Corner of Love”

Blurb: Being a civil rights activist isn’t easy in rural Louisiana. Raine’s found herself ostracized and alone because she’s a woman who speaks her mind.

Fed up, she leaves her country world behind for beautiful San Francisco. There, Raine meets a new best friend, Jo, who is free-spirited and living life to the fullest. But Jo’s in more danger than Raine realizes, Down on the Corner of Love.

Water Tank Beneath Palais Garnier – Paris, France – Atlas Obscura

Beneath the opera house, Palais Garnier, there sits a water tank, and some folks say that once a man lived there who had no face. “The Phantom of the Opera” was based upon this place.

That tank, which has been referred to as a lake and a lagoon, inspired Gaston Leroux, a crime reporter and theatre and opera critic, to use it as a setting in his classic novel. In the book and hit musical that followed, the cellar serves as the tragic figure’s dark and eerie lair. But originally, it was a purely practical part of Charles Garnier’s opera house design.

When the foundation was being built in 1862, a combination of wells and steam pumps operating 24 hours a day could not keep the groundwater away for long enough to lay the substructure. Garnier incorporated a cistern into his design to redistribute the water and relieve the water pressure on the basement walls. It also kept the water available in case of a fire.

Water Tank Beneath Palais Garnier – Paris, France – Atlas Obscura

I refer to the lagoon throughout the Seen Through the Phantom’s Eyes series, as well as in A Light Across the Lake.

Happy Birthday, Janis!

DOTCOL V2Jo came back from LA with my jeans and a ton of new records that he insisted on playing for me while we shared a pizza.

“My friend Diane painted them for you; she’s got a little boutique on Melrose and one day she’s going to be really big. She’s doing stuff for Janis and Jimi.”

Of course I knew who they were. Janis Joplin was practically a neighbor, and we saw her all the time. I loved going to her shows; she was so full of energy. Plus, I have to be honest; it was nice to hear a Southern voice besides my own now and again. — Down on the Corner of Love

A while back, I realized that all of the female singers I liked had big personalities and voices to match. Janis Joplin, who would have been 80 years old today, was definitely in possession of both.