A few weeks back Fly on the Wall reported that the ArtHouse T-shirt shack was bringing back the official Antenna Club T-Shirt. This weekend you can celebrate its launch.
If you miss the T-shirt shindig but want to catch the music Alex, Lorette and the Rolling Head Orchestra (in trio form) will be at Bar DKDC later in the evening.
And if you like T-shirts— as I clearly do—you might want to check out this cheeky number created for the Circuit Playhouse production of Reefer Madness. Circuit is a part of the Playhouse on the Square family of theaters (POTS). Get it, POTShead?
Since his 1991 defeat of incumbent Richard Hackett and School Superintendent Willie Herenton, Prince Mongo has been a universally beloved figure in the city, having been elected to six consecutive terms with little opposition. After his inauguration ceremony at the apex of the newly christened Memphis Pyramid, Mongo set to work on his ambitious agenda, the first item of which was to demolish the newly christened Memphis Pyramid in a spectacular display of pyrotechnics and executive initiative. Work crews began construction on the city’s now iconic Upside Down Pyramid the very same day.
Once he had completed the month-long process of consolidating city and county government, the Mayor made good on a key campaign promise, rounding up newly redundant elected officials and flushing them down a novelty toilet constructed for the occasion. Eyewitnesses recall a surprisingly buoyant Mayor Bill Morris; a photo of his bewildered face swirling to the bottom of the bowl graced the cover of Time that month.
From the miles of roller coaster tracks that have replaced city streets, to the weekly garbage delivery, every facet of city life has been touched by Mongo’s visionary hand. City employees dressed in fiberglass insulation trundle down the sidewalks pushing enormous nitrous oxide foggers, elementary schools never want for shaving cream, and the city’s reputation as the unicorn capital of the world grows with every passing year.
It was an unseasonably cold day when the Memphis Press-Scimitar announced that the supreme Monarch of Zambodia was gravely ill, and that the exiled Mongo would at last be required to ascend to the throne. Rumors swirled about his abdication, but after conferring with his long-time advisor and ostrich Duke of Headinburrow, Mayor Mongo acquiesced in order to avoid an interplanetary war.
As the soon-to-be King Mongo processed down Beale Street in sleigh pulled by innumerable dachshunds, the streets overflowed with sorrowful tears, and also unattended sewage. His procession picked up speed as it neared the river, and at the banks he turned to blow kisses to the assembled masses. The crowds cheered with an unquenchable madness as his entire conveyance tumbled end over end into the Mississippi River and disappeared from view. Many reported seeing him ascend into a spacecraft shortly thereafter, but most were content with the spectacle of their Mayor’s final farewell, and departed to wait for their roller coaster home.
Robert Callahan is a Wiseguy and regular contributor to Fly on the Wall.
It begins with this tweet...
For some perspective, the average owl weighs between 3 and 5 pounds. There was a photo too. Sort of.
According to Fox 13's Lauren Lee the owl is a dirty rotten thief who will steal your hat. And your earbuds.
It will also snatch your squirrel. Or your dog that looks like a squirrel.
So lock up your squirrels. Or your squirrel-dogs. Stay indoors and stay tuned to Fox 13 (or at least Lauren Lee's Twitter feed) for further Monster Owl developments.
You'll also want to track down all the responses to Lee's report. And read them aloud.
The 451 spot parking lot is free this month, but beginning next month parking will cost $3 between 6 pm and 4 am, while remaining free at all other times. That may sound like a good deal but the $3 fee does not sit well with some.
"Freedom to park should be every bit as important to us as freedom of speech and religion," said Jenny Tonic, a 43 year old Midtown resident, and founder of "Don't Tread On Me With Paid Parking," an organization with a mission to make parking fees illegal in Tennessee.
"Our Constitution gives us freedom of assembly. How can we assemble freely if we have to pay to do so? I mean, that's the exact opposite of free!" Tonic said while working on a design for her protest flyer on her Macbook Pro while enjoying a scone and beverage at a local Starbucks that cost a total of $8.42. "Times are tough, and it's ridiculous that we have to pay to park anywhere."
Tonic says that people who believe they will be allowed to park for only $3.00 haven't read the fine print. "Special event parking may have different fees," she insists. "And who exactly do you think it is who gets to decide which events are special? Hint: not you or me."
In addition to her public protest, Tonic is working hard to get a state Constitutional ban on parking fees throughout Tennessee. She has been in contact with state legislators attempting to have them put forward a referendum to amend the state's constitution. So far, no legislators have returned her calls or email.
"I can only assume that these people are in the pockets of Big Parking," Tonic said. "It's frustrating and upsetting. All I know is that until this is resolved, there's no way I'm going to Overton Square. They'll take my $3 from my cold, dead fingers!"
Reports indicate that after the interview, Tonic drove her Acura MDX to a convenience store, where she purchased a pack of cigarettes for $5.89. Later that evening, she reportedly enjoyed three beers at $3.50 apiece at a local bar as she and like minded citizens discussed the proposed amendment.
Joey Hack is a regular contributor to Fly on the Wall and is a member of the Wiseguys improv troupe.
"It’s exciting but it’s also scary," says museum founder and CEO Jerry Manders who originally operated the museum from the back of his 1998 Chevy Tahoe before upgrading to a converted school bus. “We are entering uncharted territory. The NMTI has always been a mobile attraction, but it’s time to settle down, and the fact that this project has such a tremendous reputation for being a SNAFU-plagued money pit is icing on the cake.”
"The building is also attached to this impressive floating boat dock that hasn't really worked out," Manders adds. "There are no downsides to this partnership."
Although he’s happy with the way things have turned out, Beale Street Landing wasn’t Manders' first choice.
“Oh no, it was't even on our radar," he says. "We’d originally hoped to open up shop in the Rock-and-Roll Hall of Fame building in Cleveland, but when it became clear that space wouldn't be available any time soon, my people put in a more than reasonable offer to move into the empty Memphis Pyramid.
"At the end of the day, unfortunately, the city liked Bass Pro better," Manders says. "It was their decision to make.”
Rather than becoming discouraged after the Bass Pro deal went south, Manders and his “board of directors” — Mittens the one-eyed kitten, an Iguana named Sam, and Dookie, a 13-year-old Basset Hound — decided that Memphis was where they needed to put down roots.
“The decision to put a gigantic Bass Pro store with its own indoor cypress swamp in a building modeled after an Egyptian tomb is absolutely in keeping with our museum’s mission,” Manders says. “It told us that this was where we needed to be.”
Although numerous friends recommended that he look into the Beale Street Landing project, Manders says he was reluctant to do so.
“Frankly, a more developed riverfront seemed like a really good idea to me at the time,” he says. “But when things kept going further and further over budget, I became interested. When they finally built that plaid elevator thing on top I knew it was destiny.”
Manders isn't sure when his new riverfront museum will open, but hopes to announce by the end of next year.
"The Beale Street Landing project is supposed to be complete sometime in 2014, but I'll believe that when I see it," he said.
Elvis isn't dead. Again. Check this item from the FOTW mailroom:
Elvis Presley is still alive today, ... he is trying and wants to make his comeback!! Elvis needs our help now! Elvis needs help of all his fans! A few months ago I started a petition for Elvis Presley!! I promote my petition every day on Facebook and Twitter. I have more than 700 signers now! But I want 10.000 signers on my petition or more!
So I would like to have media attention! Can you please help me? And "my petition" "bringing" "in the news"? It would be nice for Elvis Presley when so many fans stand behind him!! This is absolutely no joke! I speak the truth! This is the truth! Please believe me and help Elvis Presley! And help me with my petition!!!
Longtime readers are probably aware that your Pesky Fly is a big fan of Viet Hoa, an international market on Cleveland specializing in Asian and Mexican goods. You know like Moco de Gorila shampoo and hair gel.
That means Gorilla Snot for the English- only crowd. Just the stuff for slicking back an unruly mop.
I was so intrigued by Gorilla Snot that I did a little snooping. And by snooping I mean I Googled it and discovered that the Mexico-based company ran afoul of California clean air regulations because Gorilla Snot contains smog-producing ingredients.
According to reports the makers of Gorilla Snot have been cooperative in resolving the matter.
Anyway, if your sculptured hairstyle requires smog-inducing ape snot to stay put... There it is.
According to Cash, if it weren’t for the “good and strong” belt he was wearing, the ostrich would easily have killed him. The incident took place at the “House of Cash” in Hendersonville, Tennessee, which featured offices, a museum, a recording studio, a gift shop—and an enclosure for exotic animals, including ostriches. Cash’s return to heavy amphetamine use lasted until a 1983 incident in which Cash trashed a hotel room in Nottingham, U.K., landed him in the hospital.
We all have chicken needs. I get that. But this is a two lane street with double yellow "do not pass" lines painted down the center. And fucking sharrows. It's bad enough in the morning when all the delivery trucks turn that stretch into a blind fucking death alley. But holy Christ. Nowadays it's like there's never a time of day or night when some fool isn't taking up half the goddamn road just sitting there.
Please don't misunderstand me, I love to crunch into those hot, dark mahogany bird parts as much as the next guy. I live to feel the spices searing my lips and tongue. And I completely understand how the juicy allure of those perfect breasts might cause some uncouth fuckers to behave erratically. But I've got to say, if you're the sort of doofus who thinks it's okay to park your mud-spattered Yukon in the middle of a busy street so cousin Joe can pop in to see if his to-go wings are ready, you might seriously consider the possibility that you and your cousin are fucking assholes and even your friends think you're fucking assholes, and everybody but you knows because they they swap hilarious stories about you when you're not around.
Now I understand that some people have real accessibility issues, so I've assembled an exhaustive list of all the reasons why it might be okay to park your fucking SUV on the street in front of Gus's.
1. You are assisting a very special chicken lover with mobility issues and you need to get your friend or family member as close to the door as possible.
2. That's fucking it, there are no other reasons.
3. Seriously, there are no other reasons, stop trying to justify what you're doing because it only makes you look like a bigger asshole than you already are.
Obviously, a lot of these middle-of-the-street parkers are scared shitless. They are worried. They think you can't walk more than 15-feet down a mean Memphis sidewalk without being robbed by mutant bangers or kidnapped and sold to Alabama sex farmers or forced to make/avoid making uncomfortable eye contact with that earnest-sounding panhandler who may or may not be telling the truth about his kids who haven't had any tasty chicken in a long time. But for the love of sweet baby Jesus can everybody just stop for a minute and consider all the other poor fuckers out there on the road, most of them drunk, or sexting, or playing Bejewled Blitz on their phones, and not expecting you to just randomly park right in front of them? Can we think about that just a tic? For the children? For the fucking children?
And while we're talking about the fucking children, do you know who all else needs to get their asses right with Amy Vanderbilt? Pretty much every pedestrian — every man woman and child — crossing that same stretch of Front.
Chicken or no chicken, the "Look both ways before crossing the street" rule is in effect motherfuckers. There needs to be a law that says if you are hit by a moving vehicle in front of Gus's Fried Chicken you can just fucking deal with it yourself because it's probably your own goddamn fault you asshole. This is not a video game. It's not 1981 and you are not playing fucking Frogger in your fucking bedroom on your Atari. This is a real goddamn street with real goddamn cars driven by real red blooded Americans who are currently unable to stop in the middle of the street and eat a styrofoam plate full of delicious fried chicken because they have someplace else to fucking be.
In short, I don't know what kind of country we live in anymore. I don't know who we are or what we believe in. I just know I almost die and nearly kill every time I drive by Gus's Fried Chicken on Front. Usually while trying to get around some SUV that just fucking stopped like somebody shot it with a freeze ray.
It doesn't have to be this way Memphis. It never had to be.
Yeah, me too.
Clicking the above links you to an epic post from I Showered for Nothing, a blog dedicated to stories about bad dates of all kinds. It tells the sad, sad story of a boy, a girl, a Memphis moviegoing experience we can all relate to, some boob squeezing, and a strategically placed bag of Skittles.
Taste the rainbow:
We made small talk during the previews. You know, just the usual questions a guy asks a girl. He wanted to hear all about the size of my ex boyfriend’s penis and if I knew what “the shocker” was. He pulled out a bag of Skittles from some mysterious place and offered me some, but I declined so he placed the bag on his lap and leered, “If you want any, you can get them yourself.” I didn’t dare grab any though because he was sweeping my off my feet so fucking hard already that I just knew I wouldn’t be able to stop myself from grabbing his dick.
Now that's a sticky situation.
“I had the agenda set in stone,” said John showing a Google map on his sauce-smeared iPad with pinpoints of BBQ destinations. “They were going to have a tour de force of the finest BBQ ever made. Cozy Corner, Payne’s, Central, I thought they’d love it. Boy, was I wrong.”
John’s culinary plans first hit a bump in the road during his parents initial arrival Friday afternoon. "They pulled up to the house and my dad gets out of the car holding a bag from Burger King" He explained. "Then dad goes on and on about how tasty the Memphis BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich was. I was like are you fucking serious?”
It only went downhill from there. After complaints of the appearance and “cultural surroundings” as Sharon Arlington put it, many BBQ restaurants were vetoed by John’s parents in lieu of suggestions like P.F. Chang's, Applebee’s, or “maybe a nice looking Shoney’s.”
Dinner the previous evening was eventually decided to be a Memphis BBQ Chicken Pizza delivered by Domino’s since Sharon had a coupon that was about to expire.
“John tried taking us to all these crazy places,” said Stan Arlington. “Randy’s Cue I think was the name of it, was in some spooky alleyway downtown, and Sharon almost got hit by a bicycler in front of the BBQ Shop place.”
“I liked the ones with the drive-thru like the Porky’s on Popular Street [sic],” noted Sharon Arlington. “It’s so much easier but the sandwiches are just way too big. I usually just eat half a McRib. You should do a story on that so people know when they are for sale again.”
“Never again,” expressed John as he tried to repair his damaged passenger door lock on his car from what he says was due to excessive use by his mother during the visit. His parents then asked if he wanted one of their Swanson Hungry Man Riblet Dinners they were preparing, causing John to dash off in a huff.
“Ever try this stuff? It’s pretty darn good,” claimed Stan.
Edward Valibus is a distinguished archduke of Lithuania currently residing in Memphis, TN. He spends his days frittering away his wealth making independent cinema with his production team Corduroy Wednesday. He holds the current world record for eating the most pudding cups in one hour and is a special contributor to Fly on the Wall