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Jan 30, 200906:31 PM
The Editor's Room

Weekly Commentary with New Orleans Magazine’s Errol Laborde

Morgus’ Solution: How To Keep The Quarter Clean

 I got to interview Morgus the Magnificent this past week. During the 1960s Morgus was the rage in local television when, on Saturday nights, he would introduce horror movies on television. Between segments, he would have skits featuring his mummy servant Chopsley and a skeleton-headed computer named Eric (Eon Research Infinity Computer). Morgus wore a tattered white lab coat and always looked a little ghoulish. Some thought him to be a spoof, others recognized him as the genius he claimed to be. After all, only he had the intellect to write a scientific book entitled, Molecules I Have Known.
Dr. Momus Alexander Morgus still claim to live in his laboratory located atop the "old city icehouse" in the French Quarter, and Chopsely is still by his side obeying his commands. In 1962 a movie about him was made called The Wacky World of Dr. Morgus. Today, the doctor scoffs at the word "Wacky" in the title and claims that he did not know the film was being made, even as cameras and bright lights followed him around for a couple of months. (Nevertheless, Morgus is graciously willing to plug the fact that the film will be shown on Cox Cable's Channel 10 this Saturday night, Feb. 7 and urges everyone to make an evening out of watching it).
Morgus is too important to the universal good to waste much time on self-promotion; instead he preferred to use the interview time to speak of the world's problems, number one being the mayor's threat to reduce the cleaning operation in the French Quarter. Since the old city icehouse is located in the Quarter (apparently for security reason, Morgus never reveals its exact location) the Doctor has come up with a plan to keep the streets clean,
"Get prisoners to do it," Morgus explains. "Tell them for every day they spend cleaning the Quarter they will get a day off their sentence. They will jump at the chance."
While the idea is interesting, it is hardly novel. Prisoners have been doing work around town for years, but here is where Morgus shows a genius side far in advance of the rest of us:
"Have all the prisoners dress as clowns," Morgus adds. "That way the tourists will see them and think that it Mardi Gras all year round. It will be good for tourism." Pure brilliance.
It is time for us to start respecting Morgus for the scientific star that he is. After all, it was he who many years ago installed his own personal turbine at the bottom of the river which generates the electricity for his icehouse home. "I never have to pay Entergy," Morgus gloats. And it was he who dared to experiment with an "Instant People Machine" with the ability to turn people into sand and sand into people.
Mention has been made about his running for mayor next year, but he may be too important for that. Nevertheless, the council and mayor should consider his street cleaning proposal and we should feel confident in the city's recovery as long as the light is still burning atop the old city icehouse.

Krewe: The Early New Orleans Carnival- Comus to Zulu is available at all area bookstores. Books can also be ordered via E- mail at gdkrewe@aol.com or (504- 895-2266)


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The Editor's Room

Weekly Commentary with New Orleans Magazine’s Errol Laborde


Errol LabordeErrol Laborde holds a Ph.D. in political science from the University of New Orleans and is the editor-in-chief of Renaissance Publishing. In that capacity he serves as editor/associate publisher of New Orleans Magazine and editor/publisher of Louisiana Life magazine.

Errol is also a producer and a regular panelist on Informed Sources, a weekly news discussion program broadcast on public television station WYES-TV, Channel 12. Errol is a three-time winner of the Alex Waller Award, the highest award given in print journalism by the Press Club of New Orleans. He also received the National and City Regional Magazine Association Award for Best Column for his New Orleans Magazine column, beating out 76 city magazines across the country. In 2013, Errol received the award for the "Best News Affiliated Blog," awarded by the Press Club of New Orleans.

Errol’s most recent books are Krewe: The Early Carnival from Comus to Zulu and Marched the Day God: A History of the Rex Organization. In his free time he enjoys playing tennis and traveling with his wife, Peggy, to anywhere they can get away to, but some of his favorite spots are the Caribbean and historic locations around Louisiana. You can reach Errol at (504) 830-7235 or errol@myneworleans.com.




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