Don’t Fight in the Diner

On my last full day in Shreveport, Venda and I ate at a little greasy-spoon lunch counter called the Cotton Boll, which has been in the same spot since the 1930’s. The food was really good, actually, and I ate way too much of it. The coffee was good, too.

But the food wasn’t the main attraction on this day. Just as we were finishing our meal, this older black lady starts some shit with another older black lady – who happens to own the place – about how she wasn’t going to pay for her food because it was cold (yet she ate it anyway). At one point, it looked like they might actually start swinging at each other, so of course I started to prep my camera. After several runs, the bitchy woman finally gave up on trying to get free food and actually insisted on paying for her meal, because she wanted to come back. Evidently, as the manager told me afterward, she does this every time she comes in, but ends up paying for her food because she wants to come back. I know, I know… This was a logic-free morning.

So, while there was no fight to photograph, I did a great quote for the day, which was uttered by the owner’s daughter, as she was being restrained by another employee: “Don’t you put your hand up in my momma’s face!” It was a thing of beauty. Yes, I will be eating there next time – and every time – I am in Shreveport.

And yes, I did end up making a frame of these wonderful ladies, who can not only make some delicious food, but can also provide a quality show with the meal. Click to view full size.

The ladies of the Cotton Boll restaurant in Shreveport

The ladies of the Cotton Boll restaurant in Shreveport

All photos made with a Canon EOS-40D and a Zeiss 85/1.4 ZE lens.

I was also able to make some decent shots in the Actor’s Cafe during the open mic actors’ showcase. While eating my burger, I looked up to see a pleasant rendering of Venda in the mirror behind the bar.

Venda hard at work behind the bar

Venda hard at work behind the bar

I rather liked this shot of a bearded gentleman conversing at the bar.

I was skulking in the corner of the bar, in the dark and invisible, which is just how I like it.

I was skulking in the corner of the bar, in the dark and invisible, which is just how I like it.

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~ by peakaction on November 23, 2008.

2 Responses to “Don’t Fight in the Diner”

  1. hah hah, great story. how do you convert to b/w? or can you tell me but then you’ll have to kill me 😉

  2. I usually start out shooting in monochrome mode. Usually I’ll bump up the contrast and apply a yellow or orange filter in-camera. Once in post, I usually only add a little more contrast and maybe some burn. Nothing I wouldn’t have done in a darkroom back in the day. 😉

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