Submitted without comment.
As you may have heard, Nashville is "all that" but Memphis is happier. Probably because we're "smoking something."
I'm sure there are many nuanced reasons for Gallup's findings but I'd like to think they are related, at least in part, to the fact that these are Memphis Grizzlies.
And these are Nashville Grizzlies.
"Oh yes, I am sure Memphis is getting a Trader Joe's," Effkay proclaims, brandishing printed copies of a blog entry he posted online two weeks ago. "So it is written, when Fresh Market builds a store at the Ike's location by Playhouse on the Square, the stage is set for Trader Joe's."
"It is only logical," Effkay continues, carefully rationing out a handful of banana chips he obtained from his last "Joe's Run" to Nashville, "When the Good Trader looks down and sees a Fresh Market flourishing in Midtown, he's GOT to come, right?
"And Midtowners must do all of their shopping at the new Fresh Market as soon as it opens. The stakes are just so high," Effkay proclaims affecting a tone of grave foreboding. "So high," he repeats. "So very, very high."
Effkay has previously proclaimed the revitalization of Overton Square, renovations at the zoo, and various weather conditions to be heralds for a Trader Joe's store that has not yet materialized.
When asked why getting a Trader Joe's is so important, Effkay snickered condescendingly and said "You'll know when you know."
Joey Hack is a regular Fly on the Wall contributor, and is a member of the Wiseguys improv troupe. Additional reporting by Davis Christopher.
I believe in looking out for myself and, even for a handsome "it-city" with an NFL franchise and a massive music industry, that's no easy task. I use an expensive deep pore cleanser and a fine honey almond exfoliating scrub. And I start my morning routine by absorbing nearly all film and television subsidies allotted for the entire state in order to prop up my universally acclaimed namesake TV show.
Each morning over a cup of coffee at The Frothy Monkey I read the newspaper. Just yesterday, as my labyrinthine mind contemplated things like RCA Studio B, the Hermitage, The Parthenon in Centennial Park, Cheekwood, the Gaylord Entertainment Center, and Yazoo beer, I discovered that, in spite of having terrible jobs, difficult lives, and low access to healthcare, Memphis, that fat, economically devastated city on the Mississippi, is somehow much happier than I am. Now I cannot stop looking west and wondering what else I need to take in order to change this.
There is an idea of Nashville, some kind of abstraction. You can visit the gift shop at my Country Music Hall of Fame and take in a concert at Robert's Westernwear. You may even get the sense that you know me. But the fact is, no matter what the maps may say, I simply am not there.
These signs in conjunction (as seen posted here on the railroad overpass at Front and Butler) indicates that angry Rhinoceroses should keep to the right in order to avoid being struck by oncoming traffic. I guess.
Yesterday I was ready to unilaterally bestow the above title on Sonny Craver's weirdo soul single "Outside of Memphis," a song that claims Memphis is so great we should "build a wall" around ourselves to keep from being pillaged. But now I'm not so sure. In an approving response to the original post, a friend who shares my love of lost vinyl (and the absurd), reminded me of another oddity that earns bonus points for having been recorded in Memphis, at Style Wooten's Park Ave. studio, and released on Wooten's wonderfully-named Camaro label.
Although the song is ostensibly about a girl, "I Found My Love in Memphis," seems to be less of a love song than Chamber of Commerce propaganda cataloging the city's many amenities. Breakout couplet:
"We have more churches than filling stations/One of the best cities in the nation."
Memphis has a lot of detractors and their negativity can be contagious. The heartfelt (and hilarious) song I'm linking below is an antidote to all of that.
Forget "New York New York," and "My Kind of Town" ("Chicago, is..."). The greatest love song ever sung about a city has to be Sonny Craver's "Outside of Memphis." In fact, it's really less of a "love song" than a "lets go to bed right now" song, so over the top even the CVB might advise Craver to take things down a notch.
How much does Craver love Memphis? The singer/actor/comedian, who worked for a time as the straight man for the great Dewey "Pigmeat" Markham, loves it so much he says he'd need "homesick pills" even if he had to spend time in a place where it was raining "million dollar bills." He even goes so far as to suggest that what Memphis has is so precious the city should consider some kind of security system:
Outside of Memphis
I find the music lets me down
and the bands ain't got the same thing
and nobody knows how to sing
Hey Memphis, you've got it all
why don't you build a wall
I haven't been able to track down any information about the recording but Craver, who is originally from Columbus, Ohio, toured with various groups for a number of years before settling in Los Angeles. The song was written by New York-based lyricist Bob Hilliard with Lion Warfield who also wrote "Bubbles" from the pop porn film "Deep Throat," which seems to have more of a Memphis history that anybody else involved with the creation of the Craver single.
A much lamer version of "Outside of Memphis" was also released on the same label by Shelley Fisher. I linked it for curiosity seekers, but once you've heard Sonny, there's no going back.
“I’m not angry,” Crimma insists. But the culinary genius behind the popular food truck That’s Nacho Cheese, is lying through her meth-ruined teeth. She’s really pissed off, as are several of the more reputable automobile-based restaurateurs that are supposed to fill spaces at a new parking garage built into the meticulously restored facade of the Nineteenth Century Club on Union Av.
“What I am is disappointed,” Crimma continued because nobody was brave enough to tell her the interview was over. “There was an understanding between the city and numerous small business owners that this new garage would be for food trucks and food truck customers only, and so a lot of us were shocked and dismayed to see plans that include what appears to be a brick-and-mortar McDonald's built right into the ground level of the garage.
“On one hand, I recognize the value of having an anchor business like McDonalds,” Crimma shouts unreasonably. “It just seems like this was inserted behind our backs and at the eleventh hour so there would be no time for anybody to negotiate.”
“I’ve got no problem with McDonald’s entering the food truck market if that’s what they really want to do,” says award winning chef Sayden Dunn of the upscale TruckDucken Diner. “But if they want to be a part of this food truck parking garage they need to at least respect the integrity of the potentially mobile business model it was created to accommodate.
“Frankly, if they want to slap some golden arches on an old school bus with no wheels, I’m fine with that,” Dunn says. “It would feel like they were at least meeting us somewhere near the middle.”
The McDonald’s flap is just the latest hitch in a plan that had been devised as an alternative to an earlier proposal to use a large crane and magnet to stack a similar number of food trucks vertically in the parking lot of Urban Outfitters on Central.
“This would have been the largest food truck tower east of the Mississippi River and an overnight tourist destination,” says Midtown resident and large magnet-crane operator Benny Hanna, a vocal opponent of the food truck parking garage.
“The food truck tower is an idiotic idea,” says regular food truck patron Kai Yiyo who says he will definitely use the parking garage even if it houses a stationary fast food restaurant. “Times are changing and people need to get with the program because the younger generation doesn't like its food trucks parked on top of each other. They want them either in a garage, or crammed together on a big slab of asphalt, or randomly scattered all up and down Summer Ave."
Additional reporting by The Wiseguys
I've never seen the ghost of Elvis on Union Avenue, but I'm pretty sure this is a spirit photo of Joni Mitchell who turned 70 last week.
Happy birthday Joni. And well played, Kimbrough!
Java Cabana proprietress Mary Burns was in that special zone Thursday morning, halfway between exhaustion and elation, when she pulled out a broom to sweep sawdust from her establishment's newly-installed floor.
"It's heart of pine," she says surveying her progress on a tough DIY project undertaken with the help of good friends. The trees were over 100-years-old when they were cut and the panels are an inch-and-a-half thick. And if you look around you can see stamps from the last time the bowling lanes were resurfaced."
Yep. The new wood floors for the tiny Cooper Young coffee house with the vintage Memphis vibe were salvaged from the shuttered Imperial Lanes bowling alley on Summer Ave.
"I got the idea when I was out there for the Memphis Flyer 'Best of Memphis' party," she says.
Burns thinks the new wood floors will improve the room's acoustics and says she can't wait to hear how it sounds.
Midtown — Business owners along Madison Avenue expressed concern as an inter-dimensional portal to The Ninth Level of Xibalba, an underworld of eternal damnation and chaos, erupted along the Madison Avenue bicycle lane today, spewing forth hell-demons and the resurrection of Lykraalith, god of destruction.
“I told ya’ll didn’t I?” quipped Dee Bunker, a bar owner on Madison and staunch opponent of the bicycle lanes. “I knew it was fishy how they pushed this on us and when they came to re-stripe the roads and started to bury crystal skulls in front of my bar, I knew they were up to no good.”
Ms. Bunker is one of many who tried to prevent the installation of the bike lanes but eventually caved due to the overwhelming support for a more bicycle and pedestrian friendly area. “I can say goodbye to my property value now. Who’s gonna come grab a drink when there’s a 900 pound Three-Headed Dog sleeping in front of my place?” exclaimed Ms. Bunker. She then attempted to shoo away the beast but was unfortunately engulfed and devoured by swarms of thousands upon thousands of Fire Spiders.
City of Memphis representative Red Taype released the following statement today at a press conference:
“We all knew there would be some bumps in the road getting bicycle lanes to become a popular addition to our thriving city. Whether it is enacting traffic laws, increasing awareness of greener transportation options, or bringing forth the end times through enchanted seances and summoning our true overlord of evil, Lykraalith, King of Vile and Death, cursed be the unbelievers’ souls, may He rule us mortal servants for eternity.”
City Councilman Phil Landers unveiled a bill today that would return Lykraalith and his minions back to their underworld home but it would require a taxation and licensing fee for all cyclists in Memphis and Shelby County for a thousand millenia. It is predicted that the bill does not have the support needed in the council to pass at this time.
However, not everyone sees the negative side to the impending demonic doom. Rex Carrs, an avid cyclist and long-time Memphian, likes the new look for Madison Avenue.
“I tell you what," he says proudly. "Overton Square is really starting to look more and more like it did in its heyday.”
Two guys named Stoner have started a "soft wash" service and given it the best name in the history of soft wash services.
This is assuming that there is a history of soft wash services. Either way, I hope these guys charge time-and-a-half after 4:20.
“She was working it hard too,” says Officer Weston Krupke who wrote Fullilove a ticket for driving while fabulous. “She wasn’t going straight but kind of weaving back and forth in the road. Slow. Fierce.
“Damn, I just can’t stop smelling her perfume,” Krupke exclaims. “I could look at that woman all day, and that’s what makes her such a danger to herself and to other drivers.”
According to the police report it was the powerful odor of fresh polish that alerted officers to the fact that Fullilove’s nails had just been done. The nails were also extremely well manicured and shiny and the colors she’d selected beautifully complimented a generous application of electric blue eye shadow. Her rouge and lipstick were perfect, if thickly applied, and her short blonde wig was sharp and businesslike.
“She blew a perfect 10 on the fabulyzer,” Krupke says. “I had no choice but to issue the citation.”
No attempts were made to contact Fullilove who is too busy thinking about Memphis and the people she represents to be bothered.
Additional reporting by Danny Bader, a Wiseguy and regular contributor to Fly on the Wall.
A Dozen Reasons Why Memphis Actor Chris Ellis is the Greatest Thing that Ever Happened
Okay, maybe that's a wee bit of an overstatement. But he did get to mess with Joe Pesci in My Cousin Vinny and he helped get our astronauts home in Apollo 13, and he was in one of the good Batman movies. But the Frayser Olivier is so much more than his acting resume. In addition to being about as good a storyteller as you'll ever want to meet, Ellis is a sharp-eyed cartoonist. And when he's on he can be to the obituary what Ambrose Bierce was to dictionary entries. For the past year Ellis has been posting obits, both biting and beautiful, to his Facebook page. He hopes they can be collected into a book and published once he has a whole year's worth. I hope so too. It's funny, fearless stuff and almost every entry is certain to offend somebody. For more on Ellis check out this 2008 Flyer interview.
Family Dollar Airlines President Umberto Martine was on hand to display working models of the high-powered catapults that would propel cash-strapped travelers from Memphis to “the general vicinity of” Little Rock, Nashville and Jackson, Mississippi in under an hour’s time, and for less than the cost of traditional airline baggage fees.
“We can offer this service at an incredibly low price because we cut out a lot of the extras that people are used to, but don’t really need when traveling,” said Martine. “Without beverage services, trained pilots or airplanes to account for, you’d be surprised how little it costs to run an airline.”
Passengers on FDA will be loaded in fifty-person batches into a pressurized biodegradable plastic sphere and hurled through the air by minimum wage employees, reaching speeds that NASA scientists have deemed “offensive.” Riders are encouraged to wear helmets, earplugs and many layers of soft clothing, in addition to carrying a precautionary first aid kit, all of which can be purchased at one of Memphis’ 2000 Family Dollar locations.
Martine is hopeful that his employees will take advantage of the complementary jump-seating policy, which allows them to travel on the exterior shell of the sphere to any available destination. In addition, the company plans to offer a seat on the inaugural flight to “anyone adventurous to try our ‘fresh’ produce.”
Round trip services are not offered, nor needed, at present.
Robert Callahan is a member of the Wiseguys and a regular contributor to Fly on the Wall