In this episode, Ms Congeniality, Jaimee Dorris, interviews public relations luminary and proud Southerner Rick Looser. Looser is Chief Operating Officer of The Cirlot Agency. He runs the company with wife and founder/CEO Liza Cirlot Looser.
On a social call to the couple’s home, Dorris wears a red ball gown. It is the perfect outfit for a taunting conversation with the University of Alabama graduate as the two walk about the Looser property while exploring Southern manhood.
The house, Southern Greek revival with columns and a widow’s walk, provides the perfect setting for Dorris’s goal of addressing Mississippi stereotypes. The peek inside the home reveals that today’s Southern gentleman lives not entirely unlike he did one hundred years ago.
The tour begins in a parlor of family photos and grand piano, continuing into the great room with its ample watering station. The visit picks up steam in the bedroom, where an telling sign of absent Liza Looser is found at her bedside in its holster. This is a moment of truth, a role reversal epitomized by Scarlett O’Hara.
In 2017, there are no kitchen servants in this house, just the two charmers engaged in a game of spitting Mountain Dew into the kitchen sink. The first round goes to Looser, the second, maybe as a courtesy, to Dorris.
As it turns out, each room reveal was planned by Liza. But inquiring Dorris gets into the couple’s closet, where she asks Looser pointedly: “How are you not the traditional Southern gentleman?” He admits that a lot about him is gentlemanly save the apron downstairs bearing his name and a cooking certificate proudly displayed.
Dorris’s slapsticky interview with Looser is tongue in cheek, and Looser, dressed easily in cotton shirt and blue jeans, reveals a personality a little more loosely Southern than supposed.