Ep. 9 Hilton Head-ache

If you think adventure is dangerous, try routine, it is lethal.

-Paul Coeho


Emotions run high during the gang's first night in Hilton Head, when Ashley confronts Kathryn. After the group is forced to pick sides, everyone is walking on eggshells for the rest of the weekend. When the last flare up comes, it's Austen who gets burned when a flirtation with Chelsea comes back to haunt him.

The argument of Ashley to be relevant continues on this episode; as she tries to isolate Thomas "it's us against the world," now give me a ring. She had a strong sense of Who's Afraid of Baby Jane running through her.

Austen breaks the news he is dating Chelsea's friend again- because she wants him. Maybe Austen, Chelsea would have wanted you if you didn't date her friend. He is the type of guy who just tries to be nice guy- while doing some creepy stuff. Taking Shep's seconds, playing Naomie and Craig against each other, dating Chelsea's friend...but yet he will lay it on thick about worrying about his friendship with the Cool Girl and what a sweet guy he is. No, he is a frat boy who has no job, wants to get laid and drink. Call it like it is. The soft voice and dimple isn't fooling anyone anymore then the show RelationShep did. 

The group heads back on the Titanic II. Whitney stirs the pot and asks Thomas what does he think about Chelsea deciding whether they stay at the house now; good production value there Mr. Producer.

Thomas gives Chelsea and the cameras a glimpse of a man who may need to go to rehab; while he is ordering up them tests for Kathryn, maybe he should see if he can get a 2 for 1 deal.

Ashely shows her lack of maturity and possible DSM V diagnosis of histrionic disorder as she reacts with smirks … thoughts of Tiffany Catalogues dancing in her head.

Ashely corners Chelsea on the stairs- she forgot she was on Southern Charm and not trying out for The Bold and The Beautiful. She also realizes that Kathryn is not going anywhere and Ashely's plan of "marry me because you need a nanny" may be hurt. 

Next day, Ashely reinforces she knows how to do a good walk of shame when she plays off that nothing happened the night before. The entire group met for breakfast.

The group splits into two - one set going fishing and one set going to the oyster shoals. 

Thomas and Ashley stay back like the pariahs they are; Thomas is grounded along with her.

Once they bring back their hauls- Craig forgot clothing to change for dinner but remembered Naomie's contacts that she did not want.

The highlight of the episode was the Jack Daniels' skewers the chef made at dinner.

After dinner, Victoria calls Austen because of a snapchat photo that Naomie posted on the boat of Chelsea and Austen. Firstly, Chelsea called him first. Secondly, I guess the soup she offered him as enticement to come home is getting cold.

Oldest Living Organism

In Charleston, South Carolina, the Angel Oak tree is thought to be one of the oldest living organisms on this side of the Mississippi. 65 Feet in height, it is 28 feet in circumference. 

tree.JPG

It is estimated to be 400 to 500 years old. The tree has been strong enough to survive hurricanes, floods and earthquakes. It even made it through Hurricane Hugo of 1989.  

The species of tree is a live oak- which is native to the coastal Carolinas lowland. It grows more outwards than high in height. The Angel tree is named after the Angel Estate, owned by Justus Angel and Martha Waight Angel. The local legends have claimed that the ghosts of former slaves are the angels around the tree.

The tree is owned now by the City of Charleston. The S.C. Coastal Conservation League has fought against development around the tree because it may impact the groundwater flow.  

Images were used from the Southern Charm's cast public Instagram profiles


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Ep.8 What da Fuskie

She serves champagne with pizza and eats take out on China

-Kate Spade


Cameran plays the pregnancy waiting game; the gang prepares for a trip to Shep and Chelsea's hometown; feuding exes, Craig and Naomie, attempt to act civil; Austen decides to rekindle his romance with Victoria, but fears Chelsea's reaction.

Ashley does not like boys' night because not only does she not have friends in the area but she also thinks Thomas should be spending time looking for china patterns and her engagement ring. He is going to see his friends anyways to ensure that he is not locked into the sequel to the movie Misery. He also has probably secured all gardening tools as well.

They take a ride for more clothing- or for the purpose of the camera besides her trip with Patricia. She sees herself as Melania meets Jackie O. I am not sure if she watched the same Southern Charm as everyone else has- he lost the election.

Thomas is hoping during this shopping trip that he can find clothing that is high necked enough to choke her and cover her month from asking for a ring, yet again.

Naomie goes by Craig's house with Garfield the cat. She secretly wants to check up on the mess of his house and his life since she left it. 

Ashley in her controlling frazzled way is going on about Saint's birthday party, Thomas is too scared in his alpha way to stand up to her. He is also looking around to make sure that the knives are hidden, he is thinking in the back of his head- will she actually act on her crazy? It's bringing him back to his jailbird days.

The group all heads to Hilton Head. Shep waxes romantically on his idyllc childhood. Chelsea, lived across the island tracks in a different lifestyle but we get the idea it was the Southern Rockwell painting.

Group takes a trip on a ferry on a field trip.

Ashley talks about the Titanic in the front of the boat like foreshadowing for her public reputation fate and asks for another proposal yet again.

Craig tries to give back Naomie her eye glass case like a proud little boy. He ends up with crying, picking daisies "she loves me love me not." And Craig- she does not. And she is mad at you for it. 

The boys go to play golf while Thomas' train wreck love life is always the topic of conversation; he has no idea he is the butt of jokes rather than the icon of their respect like he wants from them. He is the classic what not to do or "he makes me feel better about my life." 

The ladies go horseback whining despite Ashley lying about never riding to Thomas. She attempts to make a big deal of not knowing what to wear; despite her history as a polo circuit girl like the groupies that hit up Tristan Thompson's DMs. She was sliding into something, and it involved a type of polo mallet. Allegedly. She is the type who gets nervous and out of place- so she picks a fight like a helpless bird to keep Thomas' attention. Meanwhile, Thomas is drinking, been through politics and prison- you are not going to get him going to dance to your tune, Ashley.

Later over dinner, we see Ashley tear into Kathryn to get an invite to Saint's birthday. I am not going to say anything wittier or more introspective than Twitter is currently probably abuzz with. Although, I can not believe that Thomas did not interject to protect a member of his family in that instance. If tables were turned- and a man was trying to inch him out, was around the kids so soon with a parenting agreement and then tear into him- he would say he has to go. Thomas- get your affairs in order. At this point Kathryn is teaching you how to co-parent. 

The Grave of the Heartbroken

Born into an upper class family on coastal South Carolina in the early 19th century, Alice Flagg has become the symbol of heartbroken love stories. She had been in love with a young man not of her same social status. Her brother was a doctor and  decided to end the relationship at once. He declared she had to stop seeing him immediately. Alice continued to see her suitor and became betrothed behind her brother's back in defiance.

alice flagg.JPG

Alice wore his ring on a ribbon around her neck but when her brother found out, he sent her to a boarding school in Charleston. This was an attempt to separate her from her lover. She subsequently became very ill with malaria and was taken back to her brother. The overprotecting sibling found the ring around her neck and threw it away. In her delirious state, she begged her bedside visitors to find her ring. The token of love was not found and she died from her sickness.

Buried in her favorite white dress, she was buried in the Flagg family plot near Pawleys Island near the All Saints Cemetery. The only marking of her grave was a plain marble slab with her first name on it.

Paranormal activity was later spotted at the Flagg home's front door, the Hermitage. There is also claims that there is sightings by the All Saints Church graveyard. In the sightings, she is seen with her hand on her chest, seemingly searching for something.

Visitors bring flowers and small tokens to her grave in sympathy. Some to soothe her heartbroken soul or to make a wish on love. Part of the folklore says, "starting at the right bottom of the gravestone, walk around six times counterclockwise and then six times clockwise stopping at the letter A" and your wish will be granted after placing a token upon the grave. 

Images were used from the Southern Charm's cast public Instagram profiles


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Ep.7 Kat's Got Your Tongue

Some nights you drink tea, some nights you drink whiskey.

Atticus


Cameran suspects that she may be experiencing labor pains. Kathryn prepares for her first day of work, while Craig helps Austen realize things are over with Chelsea and refocuses on wooing Victoria. Patricia tries to make Ashley into the perfect Southern Belle and hosts a dinner party with the men of Charleston to test her skills. At the party, it seems Thomas only has eyes for Kathryn...and he may not be the only one.

-From BravoTV.com

Kathryn meets Chelsea to work out at the gym with her roommate like Fergie getting that MILF money. She confesses she needs to work out and fill her time- because she gets lonely. Being sober, living far from her family, starting over, not dating; she is more advanced than a lot of women in their 30's. She even understands and can pronounce the word "triangulation." 

Craig and Austen get together to run; Craig talks about roommate so sweetly. I picture them as the odd couple. Austen decides to rekindle with a friend of Chelsea. And he wonders why he is not with Chelsea now? Austen is a professional crusher- he likes to wax lyrically about his unattainable crush.

Naomie, poor sweet Naomie of my youth, does not reinforce her position to the audience on how aimless Craig is when she asks her roommate what it is like to have a real job. Oh Naomie I totally think you will be running your own restaurant by 35- but those comments on missing the wifey to fold your bottom sheet and not having a job, living in your parent's house- zip it like Craig's latest cat pillow design for Patricia's company. 

Patricia brings Ashley to the place where Kathryn was just hired- maybe hoping she would be their shop attendant because does she really shop in Mount Pleasant? I think not.

Ashley broke the golden rule of high class Southern Society; you recognize the scion of the said Society but do not be too cloying. Give said matriarch reason to admire you as well. it is mutual admiration but with a definite pecking order. 

Austen meets with Victoria to win her back. Just awkward. Just missing his baseball mitt at the table and his underoos at his attempt at boyishness. 

Patricia hosts her annual gentleman dinner to remind the viewers this was Whitney's idea and it was originally supposed to be focused on the gentleman on the show.

Thomas reveals that Ashley is not on birth control and he can not be controlled. Evidently, one part of his body can be. 

Kathryn went to dinner with Thomas in order to attempt to instruct him on how to co-parent properly and be mature. Thomas just wants to hear that Kathryn wants him and revel like a pig in mud that he has control.

Final Resting Place of Osceola

Billy Powell, or more well known as Osceola, was raised as a Creek Indian by his mother. In 1814, the family of mixed heritage moved to Florida. He became infamous for leading a group of warriors against the federal government during the Second Seminole War.

Osceola was captured in 1837 at St. Augustine. Using a flag of truce, the army troops lured the Seminole leaders into a trap. The chief was sent to a prison cell on the grounds of Fort Moultrie at Sullivan's Island, South Carolina. During this time of imprisonment, he sat for a number of portraits as well as was visited by a number of distinguished individuals. He became ill and died from "quincy" after a few months of captivity. The Army doctor removed his head for study upon his death. The head has been lost but the death mask is still located at the Smithsonian Institute. 

Images were used from the Southern Charm's cast public Instagram profiles


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Ep.6 Exes on the Half Shell

 

Honey, time marches on and eventually you realize it's marchin' across your face.

-Truvy, Steel Magnolias


Naomie prepares to open her family's new restaurant, and finally comes to terms with the fact that she isn't over Craig; Patricia and Craig have a heart-to-heart; Cameran tries an old-fashioned trick to get baby Palmer to make an appearance.

-from BravoTV.com

Opening credits includes a scene of Thomas getting the newspaper, in a short cocktail robe very reminiscent of Three's Company used care salesman Larry, best friend of Jack Tripper. Saw himself a real stud, shirt unbuttoned too low, and wondering when he will realize that the word is out on his douche-ness to have to hit up neighboring women to get women.

Kathryn is getting her first job. I saw first job, because this is not a summer hire. This is her first big girl job, not on her dad's taxes.

Naomie gets yelled at by her dad in French to apologize to Peyton, something about that sounds so sweet like a poem. Have to give it to her for being so passionate. Thin line between passion and crazy- they are first cousins but Naomie has a good heart. She is in the stage of 20s where everything is very black and white. Some setbacks, disappointments, broken dreams and the pounds that you can't shake on your thighs will shake her of that by the time she hits 30s.

Austen and Craig meet to eat oysters and discuss Naomie's behavior at the Halloween Party. Naomie calls to invite them to her father's soft opening of Nico's.

Cameran meets with Shep to give a comical, endearing scene of driving down a bumpy road to have her go in labor- to fulfill her requirement of scenes and not all clips can be breakups and makeups. This show is celebrating Charleston lifestyle is it not?

Austen takes a tour of brewery to make his recipe like Snoop Dog meets Martha Stewart. He is revolutionary in thought to use citrus and grapefruit. Wow, Austen all that time in the bars testing has really paid off.

Cameran has iced tea with Shep post baby drive- and she resumes her recruitment campaign to get him to the dark side of marriage. When will people realize maybe some are happy single? Just like some people are happy not having kids. It is classic case of misery loves company.

Kathryn goes to her first interview; I am not going to go too deep into this one. I just felt bad for her and let's leave it at that. But Gwynn's should be paying her for the advertising. 

Shep goes in to see Chelsea to cut his hair and try to keep a straight face while he runs the bus over Austen's antics downtown while he has been the mature one up on the Isle of Palms. Austen thinks he is only nothing like Shep because he confesses to love sick feelings over girls, whereas Shep does not pretend. It is like a Golden Retriever and a Labrador, not much difference between breeds but longer hair. For the most part, they are both friendly breeds- sometimes too friendly.

The cast goes to Nico's Soft Opening, Thomas fawns over Kathryn in an attempt to want her to still want him and to keep Ashley on her toes. Thomas is the type that he always wants the woman to be out of his league- once he catches her, he does not want her anymore. And he keeps filling in Ashley's head that Kathryn still wants him. I think Kathyrn has outgrown her daddy or granddaddy issues; she can get someone at least a decade or two younger that is more appropriate and family friendly for her. When will Thomas catch on? It is like watching the old man at the country club pinching the server's bottoms while they pass by- he is a much younger, godlike creature in his head then people around him patting his head wondering when they are going to put him out to pasture at the Shady Pines Home.

Naomie apologizes to Peyton- which Craig will listen back to because he never got to hear the words from her in two years. She is very honest and direct- which is refreshing. She can hang her tap shoes up of excuses.

Austen and Shep have a discussion on his comments to Chelsea. His romantic dreams with her now wither away as Austen and Shep shake hands as gentlemen, mentor and mentee's, and bromancer's do. Chelsea finally sees him the way everybody did watching the two of them together- her little brother. I think Chelsea was guilty of what many of us women do- you want to like the guy, he adores you, seems decent, you like the idea but you just can not force it anymore than you can force Thomas to grow up. Just not going to happen. Chelsea, your brawny-camo-wearing-outdoorsy guy will show up in his boat to sweep you off your feet. He will even have a cute dog. You can drink coronas together and reenact your Survivor days together; maybe he will even pick up the check once in a while.

The Abandoned Town

Dorchester was the third settlement in South Carolina. In 1696, a group of Puritans resettled from the same namesake in Massachusetts and colonized the site on the upper Ashley River. 

Dorchester boasted forty homes, a school, library, Church, and a fort on the river. Today, the town has vanished but save for a few remnants. The town planning was very organized- 116 quarter-acre lots set among parallel and perpendicular streets. "High Street" ran through as the main thoroughfare. The open area in the center was called the Common.

dorchester.JPG

The town's population numbered as much as 3915, 88% were slaves in 1723. By The Revolutionary War, the community declined as the residents moved from the swampy river bank to cooler areas near Summerville. Another percentage moved to Georgia as larger plots of land were available.  

A tabby fort was built between 1757 and 1760 by local slaves. A tabby is a mixture of oyster shells, lime and sand which their handy work still stands today. The wall is 8 feet at its highest. The local militia units would camp in tents; but the fort would later fall to the British in 1780. As a result, the British left in 1781 leaving the town burning and the remaining residents evacuated. Sadly, the epicenter of the Great Charleston Earthquake of 1886 was less than a mile away and destroyed a lot of the remaining buildings.

Images were used from the Southern Charm's cast public Instagram profiles


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Ep.5 Pulp Friction

Do it big, Do it right and Do it with style.

-Fred Astaire


Thomas ponders his next steps with Ashely. Austen's parents push him professionally, while Craig hires a coach to help him get his life on track. Naomie gets wind of Craig's new crush, and turns Austen's Halloween party into a house of horrors. 

From BravoTV.com

Craig gets a life coach to rescues his relationship- on the advice of an Uber Driver.

Cameron meets her mom- the same one she laments back and forth on whether her mother is the cause of her lack of maternal instinct and being grateful for it.

Shep, Chelsea, Naomie and Austen meet to discuss Peyton- the plant by the producers who is trying to get an acting job (which apparently on Linked In- dog grooming is the new term for it) and Naomie takes the crazy bait when she learns that Craig is attracted to her. Poor Naomie is getting a bad edit this season- in previous seasons, everyone commended her anger and sh*t talking about Craig and built her up as being too good for the Charleston Renaissance man with ADHD. We need to remember that most people when going through a break up do not have cameras in their face while trying to process it. Let's give the girl some patience. Chelsea is the one who set up Naomie up with the crazy bait about Peyton; she forgot that a hair dresser is held by the same honor code as priest and therapists when it comes to obligation to not tell secrets. 

Craig meets Kathryn at the sewing shop- his escape when big bad Naomie is being mean to him. Kathryn shows the dysfunction in their relationship when she makes the comparison to her and Thomas; a big blast of cold IPA to the face. 

Austen meets his family to reinforce his image as the harmless indecisive good 'ol boy. HIs parents are basically telling him to decide on a beer and they will invest. Cue the suspense music: will Austen be willing to leave his life of leisure and having girls pay for his dates to woo him?

Peyton and Austen decided to host a Halloween Party together to introduce the imposter to the group- you know to raise the Naomie crazy flag- producers not realizing it was not necessary to do so when Ashley would be competing this for position later on in other episodes.

Austen decides to come as the way he sees himself in the mirror- Chick Magnet.

Craig is breathing so it pisses off Naomie.

She goes off on Peyton after gossiping all over the party about her; I bet this girl had no idea what she was getting into when she followed Shep to the Charleston after his rejection. I hope she was compensated for the dressing down that Naomie delivered to her. At least with some new Instagram followers to put on her acting resume.

Allie's Family Summer House from The Notebook

Boone Hall Plantation was featured in NIcolas Sparks'  movie The Notebook. The mansion is located near Charleston, South Carolina and is one of the oldest working farms in the United States. Operating for 320 years, it also offers tours since 1956. At one point, it produced cotton and pecans, now it produces strawberries, tomatoes, and peaches.

boone plantation.JPG

In 1681, Englishman Major John Boone came to Charleston to establish a plantation on the banks of Wampacheone Creek. The property was a 470 acre land grant from Theophilus Patey to the major for marrying his daughter, Elizabeth. They were also ancestors of John Rutledge, a Founding Father. The Colonial Revival home located on the property, and open to tours, was completed in 1936. The original house was lost and but the Avenue of Oaks, planted in 1743, remains which span over a kilometer.

Major John Boone was one of the first settlers in the South Carolina colony. In the 1680s, he was elected to the Grand Council but was removed twice. He had been found to be illegally dealing in Indian slaves, having associations with pirates and also concealing stolen goods. Tax assessor and highway commissioner would be other public offices that Boone would hold. His wife and five children would inherit the property upon his death.

In 1811, the property would be sold. Later, two brothers in the brick business, Henry and John Horlbeck would purchase the business. By 1850, the property would help produce more than 4,000,000 bricks that built much of downtown Charleston. They also planted pecans, which the property became the leading producer in the United States.

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Ep.4 All Talk No Action

 

Nothing makes a woman look so old as trying desperately hard to look young.

-Coco Chanel


Kathryn takes the high road by inviting Thomas' new girlfriend, Ashley, to lunch; as Cameran's due date approaches, her anxieties over becoming a mom subside; Chelsea begins to fear motherhood may never be in her future.

- Summary By Bravo TV

Cameron's best gift was borrowing Patricia's butler, Michael. Apparently, rich people can lend out "domestics" in Charleston. Amen to Cameron for not making her own baby food. My sister makes her own dog food and it's not table scraps. Dozier eats better than my kids do.

Craig skypes with his cute little parents. They are like those cute little garden gnomes in the South. Just homey. Craig has now entered into a domestic partnership with his roommate post Naomie break-up. They watch their evening shows while Craig sews. it sounds very lovely, I am jealous and a future reboot of Golden Girls in the making. Craig informs his parents he has a referral for a life coach from an Uber life coach. Was Craig driving the Uber or was he the passenger? I am unclear on this.

Thomas meets JD to get his bourbon promo in- the Siamese twins coordinated their outfits- which one is which on there? It is the southern academy uniform for men not ready to have mature emotional relationships with women. JD has the raspy voice of too much booze and cigars. Thomas provides co-parenting advice to his dinner companion. They are just missing the third mouse. Who is also blind.

Cameron calls Kathryn to let her know she is not invited to the baby shower Miss Patricia is throwing- I have nothing witty or snarky to say. Just that this is a much nicer, warmer and attractive side to C. She is like pretty on the outside and the inside now. It's not all beenos, beer , tacos and Whitney's opinions all up in her.

Shep meets with Monotone Girl- one willing to move to Charleston to groom dogs and potential role on next year's season. She was also planted to shake up the potential increase of ratings in Shep's dismal Relationship Show- the wasted production is not going to be revived with this throwback. Nothing can resurrect that show even with a girl who sounds like she is dead. Throw her back please. Shep realizes he still hates sharing his toys.. and women. Andy has not grown out of Buzz and Woody yet- and so Austen needs to be taught a lesson.

Austen is in denial he is like Shep- the difference is where? He thinks if he says it enough to the camera, he will convince himself, the cast and the audience. He is a lady of leisure-in-training right behind Shep. 

Kathryn meets with Ashley, Thomas' girlfriend. She is cracking her knuckles as she waits for this throw down. Ashely tries to set her up asking if she wants a cocktail (she needs something to report back to Thomas to remind him what a catch she is in comparison rather than standing alone as being a prize. The more she compares, the more she thinks her value increases. Oh Ashley...this is not eBay). 

Chelsea hangs with her dad by the sea, it sounds like a song title. She talks about her mom was mean and all the happy memories they made at Hooters Restaurant. She talks with her dad about it being too easy for men in Charleston dating wise, because there are so many women. She also indicates that she was taught by her dad to remain friends with ex's, even if hard, like with Austen. What is the point of a break-up then? Like the fishing they are doing in the ocean right there with a tequila flask and a nice dog, have some pride and move on to people who make you feel good. Overall, Chelsea is a lot more likeable this season and is definitely looking for a man who is like her dad. This is not going to be found of these boys of Southern Charm who are holding onto their golden years of college for just one more decade.

Ashley gets mug shot pictures of "trophy wife" and "gold digger" and brings up to Thomas Ravanel on camera about having a real mugshot. Thomas, I truly do not think I would ever pass your standard of Miss Patricia Altschul's School for Young Women. I did not receive apparently the Southern Bible on etiquette concerning mug shots.

Naomie, Chelsea, Danni and Kathryn decide to get a hotel room suite for a girls' night in Charleston. Thomas decides he needs a break from his hummingbird and he meets with Austen, Whitney, Shep and Craig. Austen wants to reintroduce Craig back into the wild of dating; because if this little hound is set amongst the flock of ladybirds then Austen will feel better about his own behavior.

During the evening out, Thomas talks about being bold and aggressive in courting, Craig gently reminds him that the ladies of this era do not like it. So now this creepy behavior is resulting in law suits and NDAs. 

As Naomie is tracking Craig on her phone, after self-admittedly admitting to psycho ex-girlfriend syndrome, they decide to meet to discuss whether to get back together.

Naomie hates Craig; once you lose respect, it cannot be brought back like Tom Cruise singing "You Lost That Loving Feeling.

The H.L. Hunley

On the 17th of February 1864, John Crosby was on the deck of USS Housatonic, which was located a less than six miles. The Housatonic was patrolling Charleston's Harbor as part of the Union naval brocade during the Civil War. 

At around 8:45 pm,  the officer on the deck saw something break the water about 100 yards on the starboard side. Crosby figured it was a porpoise or a log. The image came closer to the Housatonic and Crosby sounded the alarm. The shadowy image he saw- a submarine.

Union ships had been told to be on guard since information had passed to them from Confederate deserters concerning designs of undersea vessels. The USS New Ironsides had been damaged four months earlier by a semi-submersible CSS David about four months earlier. This particular night- the windless, moonlit evening made perfect conditions for the submarine, the H.L. Hunley. 

Seven Confederate sailors were inside the rudimentary submarine; operating a handcrank that powered a propeller while another sailor steered. The sheer size of the 1,240 ton Housatonic made this a dangerous mission but also the testing of the submarine had already taken 13 lives, including the inventor. Constructed in Mobile, Alabama, Horace Lawson was a marine engineer who designed the plans. The Hunley was a 40-foot-long cylindrical iron steam boiler with a bow and stern that tapered. The structure was tested on the Mobile River, the revolutionary craft was brought to Charleston in August 1863 in the hopes of turning the tide of war with this secret weapon.

One of the incidents in its testing phase occurred when the ship offer ordered the vessel to dive with the hatches open; resulting in five crewmembers drowning (9 total were on the crew). A second training accident occurred after the submarine was salvaged, resulting in the 8 member crew of the Hunley perishing. The designer, H.L. Hunley, died in this incident as well. 

Despite knowing the deadly history, Lieutenant George Dixon agreed to take command in November of 1863 after it was brought to the surface. He was able to have a crew of volunteers come forward to man the craft. Lt Dixon carried a bent gold coin, the result of slowing a bullet that would have killed him at the Battle of Shiloh, hoping this would be his good luck charm for the dangerous mission. 

P.G.T. Beauregard had given orders to Dixon to remain on the surface during attacks, based on the prior testing incidents. However, the submarine still remained below the waterline. The ship's 12 cannons were useless to fire upon the craft. The crew therefore used rifles and shotguns to try to stop the submarine. The armor was strong enough to deflect the bullets. The 16-foot rod of the HL Hunley then struck the warship.

135 pounds of gunpower exploded after the spear tore into the starboard quarter near the powder magazine. The Housatonic took on water and was the first warship to be sunk by an underwater vessel. Most of the crewmembers would be saved by lifeboat or climbing the rigging, for later rescue as they were in shallow, 37 foot depth. Five sailors of the 155 crewmembers were killed. The HL Hunley though sunk to the bottom of the Charleston Harbor, it is a mystery why after it success. It may have been damaged in the explosion, hit by one of the shots of the Housatonic or sucked into the vortex created by a sinking ship. 

Later, in 1995,  it was pulled up from its watery grave, with the crew and good luck charm still intake.

Images were used from the Southern Charm's cast public Instagram profiles


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Ep.3 Groovy Baby

Episode 3 opens with showing the Charlestonians in their natural habitants. Including a nice shot of Thomas in bed with his girlfriend the morning after...thank goodness that the television is not scratch and sniff. 

There is a nice moment showing Kathryn as a mother to her children; she tells the audience that Kensington had been taken away at six months. In a way, she reminds me of Holly Golightly who goes to rehab. She has this element and romanticism about life, visiting the prison still looking fabulous, her neighbor half in love with her, hoping to be good enough for the Ravenel's and Patricia's of the world. Dife Sunglasses in this case sadly does not make the woman.

Thomas asks his girlfriend if she ever had a pregnancy scare. He is the classic case of Jax, from Pump Rules, but older with a southern accent. He wants to touch that fertile pot. He is too scared to make real decisions because of what others will think and his father's lack of acceptance; so he likes to dance with danger to make the decision for him. I will send him my Lucy psychiatric bill for five cents to Charlie Thomas Brown Ravenel.

Next scene cuts to Cameron and her non gay husband (Whitney) who fills in for her real husband so she can do her requisite scenes. Her commentary really just fills the purpose to represent the overall elitism of Charleston socialites. Although, it is much nicer to see her warm to the certain red head. It is way more classier and not as sexist. Whitney and Cameron is discussing Patricia's plan to throw a baby shower- that has an extensive theme to explain. Note: if you have to explain the theme that much and send vision boards- it is not a party, it is a production. Cameron's impending motherhood is making her a lot more warmer and likeable. 

The Charleston boys meet for drinks- who wonder if Craig is going to come out to them and look for fodder to feed their gossip on his relationship status with Naomie.  First of all, he is going to be the next Ralph Lauren with his sewing and style vision. His very spirit, confidence  and drive causes the other men to be threatened. Secondly, I forgot. 

Cameron sees her baby on the 3D scan with Chelsea. Blah blah blah. We are not doing What To Expect What You Are Expecting on TV here. But it provides a great setting to have a conversation on Austen that is not a restaurant. Chelsea is complaining on Austin's lifestyle of partying all day and not having a job. What is about the boys of Charleston who want to be women of leisure as soon as they get around Shep and Whitney? 

Thomas calls his dad who sounds like the Snowman from Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer from those 1970's cartoons. He also makes a reference to where Ashely lives as to where his father used to get his liquor...during Prohibition. 

Kathryn comes to visit Craig at his new place with his roommate. I am sorry- I think there should be a web cam just on that. Not a whole show- but what does Craig do during the day. I picture something like the Project Runway studio sans Tim Gunn. 

Kathryn reveals that she hooked up with Thomas in New York post dating Ashely. Totally believable. Nothing witty to say. There will always be a part of Thomas who wants Kathryn but he doesn't want to want her.

Patricia gives her future party planning book set-up baby shower for Cameron. She is calling it a Slim Aaron Miami Beach baby shower. However, it looks more like the Beverly Hills Hotel theme party on the Pinterest boards. Is her butler hitting up the martinis and the Pinterest for his mistress?

Patricia, please don't compare Trashley to Jackie O in her outfit. She did not get the theme- because most of the guests didn't have far to reach into their closets. Whereas, Trashley was dressing like she was meeting Thomas' father normally when she was applying to be his nurse. Her gloves are also hypo-allergenic. There was no theme with her. 

Patricia is all over Cameron's escort, Dr. Irons when they arrive. Maybe next husband in the sights? Mmmm. Apprently, though she is being courted by someone that is alluded on a future episode.

Naomie risks her social standing to approach Patricia on her lack of invitation for Kathryn to attend the baby shower. Evidently, she did not get the psychology memorandum that everything Kathryn is that she detests is what she identifies in herself and magnifies her own fears. Dahhhling, Holly Golightly Kathryn shall be forever. 

Naomie takes aside Craig during gift opening to challenge Craig on whether he is ready to be a lawyer or not. She evidently is marrying the career promise, not the man. She doesn't want a wife- she wants to move out of her parent's house and not into Jo-ann's Fabrics. (For the record, I like Naomie. I am hard on her because she reminds me of myself 10 years ago. Ok, 3 years ago. But I am not agreeing to a day over that.)

She then finds JD and his wife arriving. I am sure behind closed doors, JD told Elizabeth to come to keep up appearances- Shep got it. Elizabeth on the other hand, did not realize that she was being leveraged for his good PR. Or maybe she did, because she wanted to neutralize having their divorce business paraded on television for every elementary school teacher and their kids' friends' parents viewing pleasure within 5 miles of Charleston.

Charleston Is Hit By An Earthquake, 1886

More than 60-100 people died when an earthquake hit near Charleston, South Carolina on 31st of August, 1886. This was the largest recorded earthquake in the history of the southeastern Unit States resulting in fatalities and hundreds of buildings damaged.

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In August of 1886, the town of Summerville felt foreshocks. Unfortunately, the magnitude of the quake was unforeseen. On August 31st, at 9:51 pm, the rumbling was felt as far as Boston, Chicago and Cuba. Alabama and Ohio had damage as well to their structures. There was even speculation at the time that maybe Florida had broken off from the United States. The approximate magnitude of the earthquake was 7.6 and the city of Charleston, South Carolina was hardest hit. Most buildings were destroyed or seriously damaged- numbering to about 2,000. Most of the buildings were torn down. 14,000 chimneys crumbled under the quaking. Not only does the earthquake cause chaos, but the resulting fire and water line ruptured produced havoc. It is estimated about $112 million in today's money.

Railroad tracks were bent- despite there not being actual surface cracks. Liquefied acres of land surrounded Charleston. The railroad basically cut off the inhabitants from the rest of the world. Experts were stunned and mystified because there was no known faults for 60 miles of the city. However, it was later determined that along the coastal plans of Virginia, there is a concealed fault. For weeks after the earthquake, aftershocks could be felt. When the buildings were built or structures recovered, earthquake bolts were added to the foundations in order to strength the stability. 

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Ep.2 The Break Up Bunch (Part 2)

 

Don't be like the rest of them Darlings.

Zsa Zsa


Episode 2 opens up with the Charlestonians getting ready for Shep's big boy birthday party. 

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As Thomas and his rebound eye candy drive to the party, Ashley forgot to drink a drink - because her thirst comes across screen to the point- hey get someone a hose!  She throws out "hints" on being the permanent caretaker of Kathryn's children as Thomas' wife- because this is so much cheaper and easier than staffing problems. She questions why Thomas has to clear the nanny with Kathryn's input. Oh, maybe because she contributed DNA to the making of those babies- hence why people arrange co-parenting agreements even down to when other dating candidates are arranged to meet the children. Oh, and poor Kathryn- the only item that Thomas was willing to give in on about the firing of the nanny was when it got too awkward that he stopped dating her daughter. It was the one night stand that never leaves- you get to see them every morning along with the awkwardness.

The dinner party continues with the hired help- you know Craig working the grill while Shep treats the dinner like the homecoming princess he always saw himself as. If Craig's Etsy Shop doesn't take off, he maybe Patricia's next butler.

Craig yet again shows why he is truly the classier gentleman of the group- that money doesn't buy you class- when he explains why he didn't bring a date. He wanted to show respect to Naomie and not bring a date. 

Naomie tells the camera she wanted to see more broken heartedness from him after their relationship dissolved. Translating this- she fully tore down his self-esteem and wanted to revel in the results. She wanted to see him suffer more like you know she was. 

Ashley looks like a moth (a very basic beige vanilla one) as she nervously fluttering around in the back scenes- knowing that the rival is about to arrive- the one that she is trying to pretend didn't happen and the one she is constantly trying to compare herself as "Hey look at me I am the most UN-Kathryn" you can get. Thomas is smirking because all he wants to do is make Kathryn jealous. Score one for him- he thinks. 

The tribe of break-up girls come in like a gang of cats- they fan out, tails up knowing they are all going to see their ex's....or maybe it was more like an episode of Total Divas and the Royal Rumbles of WWE is about to happen. 

Chelsea saddles up to the bar like a confident cowboy- oh Austen, you need to back up there boy Chelsea's um gun I bet would be way bigger than yours. 

Thomas is like a 7th grader all over Ashley to continue his campaign of showing off- he needs to go back to politics or get a job because he has too much time on his hands leaving the kids with the nannies and chasing younger women. Keep the mind games for the political arena. Cameron keeps receiving multiple compliments from TrAshley who is acting like she is 7th grade as well with giggles and forgetting her nursing training to recognize a 9 month pregnant woman. 

Poor Kathryn is still in love with Thomas- that is her Mr. Big. Can I tell her honey- in real life- you outgrow Mr. Big along with your size 0 skinny jeans, Disney princess dreams and daddy issues. 

JD is giving pregnancy advice to Cameron about drinking a glass of wine a night- you know because he has gone through 4 of the pregnancies. If the Charleston gossip is true, his wife needed that and more to get through some of his antics. His successful business-family man- husband image is cracking - who provided many a time of guidance to Thomas when he didn't have a brain or was letting the "other" one do the thinking. Thomas has remained pretty silent on the subject- despite watching his life coach stumbling- probably because he is relieved another middle aged man is taking the arrows of the Charleston society; he is so naughty, but he is rich so it is acceptable.

The girls hate JD. Now, for all the shenanigans that Thomas has been involved in (including cocaine, young women, run-ins with the law) and NONE of them has ever called him but to defend him. For these polite southern women to be so obvious, and risk the wrath with the Grand Dame Lady Patricia Astor herself- either all of them are projecting their breakups- or they have been privy to some serious inside information of that break-up. Naomie lights into JD- not only with the single, without children, ire but also as a recently broken up woman herself; projecting the pain of broken Pinterest wedding boards. Chelsea, Naomie, Danni and Kathryn all rally around like a pack of hyenas jumping on him. BravoTV becomes Animal Planet real fast just missing the dude who gives commentary telling us what the animals are doing. Whitney and Austin shrug their shoulders like two little boys telling their mom Mikey did it. No words. They definitely left their foxhole buddy to the enemy fire.

Kathryn and Thomas are hashing out nanny training by the bar. Where is Nanny McPhee when you need her? Keep her older so Thomas doesn't try to sleep with her- but then again she may have a daughter. He took it on himself to hire and make decisions without notifying her before his girlfriend. Maybe it is actually Thomas' plan to impregnate younger women thinking they will continue to validate his intelligence superiority because his father considers him to be the youngest and dumbest. Mmmm...maybe Thomas is the one with the daddy issues and not just the grandfather issues of these young ladies are coming into play. 

Ashley comes up on the two co-parents hugging, wearing a bridal up do to show Thomas what he is going to be getting down the aisle. I really think that will push him to put a ring on that naked finger.  I wonder if she upgraded her LinkedIn Account like Landon did when she was applying for the position of Mrs. Ravenel  

Cameron maybe softening around her mouthpiece edges for Whitney now that she is becoming a mother. Maybe she will realize that his strong opinion against Kathryn comes from hurt pride of being rejected and Patricia's glimmer of seeing herself in Kathryn- all the things she doesn't like about herself and tried to cover up with kaftans and morning cocktails. Or maybe it is the willingness of  Kathryn to be open with her parenting struggles with Thomas and every late teen/early 20s bad decision to be paraded for the cameras is basically the bread and bourbon for the show and bringing in a paycheck for everyone.

Thomas follows Ashley to the bathroom- together. They make a big  formal statement of leaving the table and letting the party goers in the living room know. I don't think Saint's birthday got this much of a Walmart birth announcement sent out. His children's mother is downstairs- and he is fornicating as a revenge screw- how classy. Oh my gosh, I regret now my parents didn't sign me up for cotillion. It is so convenient that Thomas pays Ashley's rent already- so he can see how it impacts his finances to have two mothers of his children. It is also further economical he tries to cut support for the one to pay for the newer one. So economical! 

Whitney tells Craig to put a muzzle on his ex girlfriend after going off on JD for his behavior; Craig takes Naomie aside and tells her she is did the right thing- and he would have done the same thing. Hence, why Craig will never get to sit at the big boy table at the Country Club or Yacht Club with the other good old boys. 

Morgan Island: Real Life Planet of the Apes

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In 1979, the Herpes B virus swept through the population of monkeys in the Caribbean Primate Research Center located in  La Paguera, Puerto Rico. Some of these monkeys had actually reportedly escaped the facility into the local area. Outbreaks among the locals would occur when the monkey populations would become excessive. 1,400 rhesus monkeys were shipped to an island located off of South Carolina. Each year about 750 newborns are born and now the population on Morgan Island is now about 4,000. The land is protected by the federal government going on 30 years. Researchers are the only people allowed on the island- who tag the monkeys and remove about 500 a year to use for medical testing. 

Morgan Island is 4,489 acres located between the Morgan and Coosaw RIvers. A 370-acre maritime forest is the primary area where the monkey colony resides- in case you get lost while fishing. The US Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) owns the monkeys. 

The medical testing that the monkeys have been instrumental in have included vaccines, polio, AIDS and bio-terrorism. The island is well protected due to the controversy of animal testing. And if civilians do try to "break" onto the island- the monkeys do not take well to outsiders as part of their natural territorial nature. 

Images were used from the Southern Charm's cast public Instagram profiles


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Hipstoric

Ep.1 The Break Up Bunch (Part 1)

 

I'd rather be someone's shot of bourbon than everyone's cup of tea.


 This season opens with a montage of a "A Day In the Life" of the Charlestonians we missed...

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Cameron opens up with a contrived white-sheets-get-out-of-bed scene; where cameras and a producer are standing by after prompting her to stage it. The audience appreciates a brief glimpse of the Southern Living Magazine spread- and I am not talking about her cute little basketball prego belly.

Craig-Miissing-An-HGTV-Show is spraying for bugs or doing a popcorn ceiling on a property. Please tell me Pinterest is not telling him to bring back popcorn ceilings. 

 Shep is getting Chick Fil A. Not the first chicken we have seen him pick up.

Cameron brags about how easy her pregnancy has been- from the same woman who can eat tacos and beer without gaining weight (still waiting for a Bravo TV character that admits she gains weight when she looks at tacos and beers. I still standby the only "real" character that was the one who smoked with latex gloves and put her Fitbit on her dog from Home Sweet Oklahoma). 

Cameron and Shep talk about his recent foray into Dating with Shep or whatever wasted dating spin off he was on in order to avoid having a job- which I think the prize should have been you don't get a STD and get instead a mature man out of the deal not named after the show's star. Why keep pushing a guy who isn't ready to settle down? How did that work out for TRav who took the baiting of the friends to settle down? Why hasn't anyone pointed out that Shep is on the TRav track- only thing missing is a DUI or some drug charges...yet.

Danni is hanging out with Kathryn- because they need a female side kick besides one of the guys she has slept with, one who has crushed on her or a girl that TRav has slept with- apparently, Kathryn has realized that having babies with Thomas is not a ticket to King Street.  (If you have seen previous seasons- he allegedly promised  to take care of her for life. She didn't realize he thought this meant: lawyer fees, no-notice drug tests,  nanny dramatics, unfilled relationship commitments  and his own Wife classes that were set up for her to fail such as cooking and entertaining). Kids are expensive, they are not good monetary investments to get a return on and make everything harder- investment bankers and career counselors will let you know on this). Sadly, for her she has had to grow up really quick on camera- whereas the rest of the world usually does not have every bad decision, drunken night and double standard paraded on reality television and the hypocritical elitist judgements of her Southern Charm "friends" or peers giving commentary on it. She has turned from party college ginger- as in red sharpie marker hair- to really the girl I think a lot of people want to see succeed. She is the phoenix of the ashes- the audience wants to see her be the best mom, hustle her career, finally "be good enough" for Thomas only to reject him  and become the Robin Hood of Charleston. 

I want to know more about Danni's broken engagement (I know not my business). She said they were two different people right before the wedding- that means there is a story there. And I am not going to lie, her relationship with Stassi is incest. Something doesn't feel right about it. In this case, I don't like when reality television shows collide.

Thomas is mourning losing his nanny during negotiations with Kathryn more than the relationship with his children's mother; leading one to think maybe the boss needs more babying than the children need.

TRav introduces his new girlfriend, in an effort to project what he thinks he deserves like a boy scout badge- basically anything but Kathryn and to prove to some of the other younger fillies in his social circle such as Danni who has rejected him. 

Chelsea is on the show still- hopefully, we are spared of another showmance with Austin. Naomie is talking about the break-up with Craig; evidently she didn't appreciate his homemaker skills to be a good wife someday or his hope chest collection he has been saving of quilting supplies. I don't understand the sink set-up in her shop- it was very distracting whether the wall was done or not. There was a tin backsplash and some glue that was left. Is this a salon write-up with the department of health?  I am sorry- but it distracted me from paying attention the scene.

Chelsea doesn't appreciate late night visits from Austin after he went out with the boys. She isn't into him- surrr-prise the ending on this transparent effort to get her on the show. Chelsea assures Naomie she wasn't mad he was dating one of her friends. Listen, man, I know He's Just Not That Into You was an early 2000s fad...but may want to break out the Kindle edition of that for Austin. I may be old and immature- but I remember the days where you missed your guy and him coming over after seeing the boys made you feel special, you didn't even want to be apart for two hours and assured he wasn't going home with anyone else. I also remember the days you didn't want to see your guys with another friend. 

J.D. decides after 5 seasons that he wants to join the bachelors on the show- and be one. I mean that Elizabeth, mother of 4 children and socialite of Charleston, told him she is no longer in love with him. Ummmm. Okay. We can only hear his side of the story, because Ms. Elizabeth isn't going to give a one sided version of a divorce to a Bravo TV camera crew about the reasons. At least someone is thinking of the 4 mini j.d.'s. 

Shep gets a "Jennifer" (she is a blonde and has a name like Jennifer, Jessica, Katie or some other name that the audience isn't going to remember) to help him host a birthday at his house and sets up Craig as the grill daddy- because you know Shep sees him as the hired help and has to remind him any chance he gets on the hierarchy. The man made him an apron with his name on it- the man can throw down in Home Ec Class. Serously bud. 

TRav can't wait to show off his girlfriend he compares in every other interview to Kathryn, has having "manners." Ladies in TRav's eyes apparently that use the word "hootchie;" is classy in his social circles. 

The episode leaves off with the ladies all meeting to get ready to go to Shep's house for his birthday and to kick off the season. TRav leaves off wanting to show off his girl in front of Kathryn- because you know he is a pillar of the community and so much more mature than the younger mother of his children. 

The Gentleman Pirate...and his name wasn't Thomas

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Nearly 50 pirates were hung in Charleston in 1718. Blackbeard was the most infamous pirate who was in the harbor that year. However, the Gentleman Pirate, Stede Bonnet, met his maker on the gallows at White Point Garden. Stede Bonnet was a major in Barbados Army and came from a good family. He had been captured in a battle with Colonel William Rhett.

Bonnet was born July of 1688 in Bridgetown Barbados into a wealthy English Family. In 1694, after his father's death, he inherited his family's estate. He would go on to marry Mary Allamby in 1709. Despite his lack of nautical experience, Stede Bonnet decided to leave behind his marital problems, a dead child and dabble in piracy in 1717. 

On board his ship, Revenge, he paid a crew to travel along the eastern seaboard capturing and burning other Barbadian ships. He was seriously wounded with an encounter with a Spanish warship while en route to the haven for other pirates such as himself in the Bahamas. For a time, he ceded his command to Blackbeard due to him incapable of leading his crew. Together they plundered merchant ships together. His crew ultimately left him for Blackbeard aboard the Queen Anne's Revenge and Stede was a guest aboard for a time.  Or really, it was a nice way of saying that Blackbeard sensed an amateur and decided to seize command with the consent of Bonnet's first mate.  His ego was definitely hurt.

Stede Bennet went ashore in North Carolina- he found his ship abandoned and stripped- his 25 crew members were left on a small island. He began to grow his reputation with his improved skills- killing prisoners, pushing around civilians and crew abuse as he hit the seas again.. Colonel William Rhett was sent by the governor of South Carolina to capture him. Col Rhett chased him down to the mouth of the Cape Fear River. A firefight ensued with the pirate was captured; despite his declarations of blowing himself and the ship up. His crew was like, hold up, wait a minute and surrendered. Stede Bonnet tried to exploit his upper-class background and plead with the governor. His men had been hanged and his long trial ended with his hanging on the 10th of December 1718. His adventures last less than two years. 

Images were used from the Southern Charm's cast public Instagram profiles


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