As you know, the Charleston City Paper's annual Best of Charleston issue hit the stands on Wednesday. But you may have missed the news about another, equally important, contest — the Doggone Best of Charleston Awards. And I have only myself to blame.
See, the Doggone Best of Charleston Awards, or the Waggies as we call them here at the City Paper, are compiled and tabulated by yours truly. And I must say that the results are surprising. So without further adieu, here are the winners.
The Rabid Chef's House of Soups
This man knows soups — from the best damn kimchi jjigae this side of the Pacific Ring of Fire to a bowl of udon soup that would have the Buddha renouncing the Four Noble Truths in favor of a life of de Sade-style debauchery. And the best part is, we hear he doesn't follow recipes. The Rabid Chef wings it every time. Take that Mike Lata.
Even though this impressive one-man band, the first "death metal-beach music" group in the world, has yet to put out an album or write a song (heck, we hear that the only thing Black Shag's principle songwriter can play is dumb), this is without a doubt the most influential act to come out of the Holy City since Hootie began hawking Burger King chicken sandwiches. Give "666-Minute Man" a spin and hear it for yourself. Or not. Since, um, it hasn't been recorded yet.
Best Office Door Talk Show Host
You Got a Second with Chris Haire
This talk show is not only a favorite of City Paper employees — all of whom love it when this adorably grouchy curmudgeon pops up in their doorways for hard-hitting, one-on-one chats about their failings as writers and human beings — but so does all of the Lowcountry. With Barbara Walters off the air, Chris Haire is your go-to guy when you want to make somebody cry.
OK. I'll stop there. I really don't want to take away the spotlight from any of the City Paper's winners more than I already have. And believe me, if I kept writing, the streets of Charleston would be flooded with tears.
Which brings me to Sen. Jim DeMint and the Senate Conservatives Fund. Some months back, the Upstate senator founded the Senate Conservatives Fund, a PAC designed to fund conservative candidates like Florida Republican Marco Rubio, who is challenging Florida Gov. Charlie Crist in the Sunshine State Senate race.
The Senate Conservatives Fund "is a political action committee dedicated to electing strong conservatives to the United States Senate. We do not support liberal Republicans, and we are not affiliated with the Republican Party or any of its campaign committees." Furthermore, the fund "seeks to bring bold conservative leadership to Washington by supporting only the most principled candidates nationwide — candidates who believe in the timeless conservative principles of limited government, strong national defense, and traditional family values."
Fortunately, DeMint's PAC ranks all the folks in the U.S. Senate so that voters will know exactly who are the most principled candidates, the ones who most align with the Senate Conservatives Fund's principles. Surprisingly, only one candidate scores a perfect 100.
It's not Orrin Hatch. He got a 76. And it's not Mitch McConnell. He got 79. And it's not Lindsey Graham. He got 84.
Nope. It's Jim DeMint himself.