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Live Active Cultures

Seth Kubersky holds down the fort while everybody else makes out at Fringe

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Much like her hero, radio pioneer Charles Kuralt, Ball will be traveling solo along America's scenic highways. But instead of a tricked-out RV, she's packing her life into her PT Cruiser: a bed in the back, thermal curtains to block out the light and a two-burner Coleman gas stove for a kitchen. As I crawl into her miniature mobile home, I'm more than a little jealous at her ability to pare her possessions down to the bare necessities, with little but a cargo hammock and jury-rigged shelf to contain her earthly possessions.

As much as Orlando will miss Katie, there's plenty Katie will miss about Orlando. For starters, she'll miss Will's Pub, which she says has "done more for the local culture that matters to me" than any other establishment. More broadly, Ball will miss the arts community, saying "there's no other place like it." Finally, she has fond feelings for local food culture, singling out the Vietnamese district along Colonial ("it makes us so big city"), Beefy King and Cecil's Bar-B-Q.

Katie is sad to be leaving, "but also euphorically happy" to embark on her adventure. She's not gone forever, but while she plans to come back some day, she doesn't know in what capacity. Until that day, I've got Katie's Ira Glass comic book and her dining table to remember her by. The rest of Orlando will have to comfort themselves with archives of Katie's old radio broadcasts, along with her legacy of enthusiastic arts encouragement.

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