Sunday, July 24, 2016

Donald the Great

Republicans have no solutions. Neither did Cleveland’s protesters

Posted By on Sun, Jul 24, 2016 at 9:43 AM

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What separates us from animals, really? Elephants mourn their dead. Monkeys use tools. Octopi are creative problem solvers able to escape the tightest fixes. Even pigeons, filthy as they are, choose monogamy and mate for life. That leaves people with one thing — Self-delusion. And nowhere is this tendency more evident than motivational speaking events where famous and near famous people like former Minnesota Viking Fran Tarkenton dance to inspirational music, quote Vince Lombardi and tell ordinary schmoes the only person standing between themselves and the wealth we all deserve, is the person in the mirror. On second thought, it’s probably more evident at a Republican National Convention where delegates literally wrap themselves in the flag, pretend to care about minorities their platform is almost certainly designed to harm. In Cleveland last week, where Jersey Governor Chris Christie incited a slobbering mob, and G.E. Smith's band cranked out AC/DC covers between speakers, it was sometimes hard to make distinctions. “USA, USA, USA!”





On the closing night of the 2016 RNC, in the rust belt metropolis of Cleveland Ohio, presidential nominee Donald J. Trump tricked conservatives into golf-applauding a brave plea to not mass murder members of the L-G-B-T- Q community. Okay, so maybe it wasn’t that brave, or even a plea, exactly. But that’s what passes for progress in the Ghastly Old Party with its explicitly heteronormative platform. It was a weird moment in a long, smug address that played out like an infomercial for the “Blue Collar Billionaire,” who grew his fortune through bankruptcy after bankruptcy, leaving investors to hold the bag for his profitable profligacy. To borrow from daughter Ivanka’s media-approved “smart” and “savvy”speech, you’ve got to judge the man by his results. He’s loaded, right?



While cliche protesters waved ignorant signs about Trump being the antichrist, chanting the same lame chants they’ve been chanting for decades, Trump, who knows a thing or two about get rich quick scams (cough-Trump University-cough) promised to make America rich again — FAST. That’s got to be an appealing message in a desperate place like Cleveland which was named the poorest big city in America in 2004. A decade later 1 in 3 Clevelanders still lived in poverty, and as Trump noted, it’s been a long time since anybody who wasn’t rich to begin with has seen a pay raise. Easy pickings for a master scammer who knows the con can’t work without establishing a modicum of trust and good feelings.



Let them eat Trump Steaks.



Misleading facts about poverty within the Latino community were accompanied by comments broadly linking Mexican immigrants to heinous crimes. He blamed President Barack Obama for racism, and African-American’s generally for violence in the streets. He said he would be this campaign’s “law and order” president, echoing tropes of Nixon’s 1968 campaign. Nixon used “Law and Order,” to capitalize on white paranoia brought to a fever pitch by Civil Rights marches, and urban riots like the one that tore Detroit apart after police raided an African-American club called The Blind Pig, igniting a powder keg of generations old marginalization. Trump’s doing the same, but with less diplomacy and grace.

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Racial tensions have yielded a lot of nonsense talk comparing 2016 to 1968 even though the two years are nothing alike. For example, in 1968 America was embroiled in a deadly, heavily televised war in Vietnam. These days drones do most of our civilian killing, and all the action happens comfortably off screen, out of mind, and outside the context of a formal military conflict. So, in the absence of righteous fury, middle America can wallow in the unrighteous kind and Trump’s acceptance speech received some of its best applause when he promised to be the law and order candidate and end this reign of minority terror — FAST!



The unanswered question to most of Trump’s vague proposals: How? How will he make America rich — “FAST!”? How will a Federal executive end violence — “FAST!”? Does he really think he’s running for CEO in chief?



Critics have described his acceptance speech as being too dark. Fans have described it as brutally honest but hopeful. Better descriptives would be empty, incoherent and delusional. To his credit, there’s an enormous constituency for that.  

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Rep. Jeremy "Pants Candy" Durham Merits Expulsion From Tennessee General Assembly

Posted By on Wed, Jul 13, 2016 at 9:13 PM

Jeremy Durham AKA "Pants Candy"
  • Jeremy Durham AKA "Pants Candy"
File under wow.

Rep Jeremy Durham (R-Duh) looks to be a special kind of icky creeper, and a report from Tennessee's attorney general finds his behavior merits expulsion from the General Assembly. Not that anybody's expelling him or anything. 

According to the AG's report Durham was nicknamed "Pants Candy" by one of the 22 women with whom he had inappropriate sexual encounters. His partners had been reluctant to complain for fear of losing their jobs. Lobbyists, interns and executive assistants also worried they's lose favor with the GOP caucus

How did Durham earn the nickname Pants Candy? He kept a dish of candy on his desk. When asked for a piece he reached in his front pocket and fished suggestively for an unwrapped mint. "You don't want those, I've got this," he was quoted as saying.

The legislator's political fate is being left in the discerning hands of District 65 voters. 

Shudder. 

Monday, July 11, 2016

No Child Transplant Patients Were Harmed as a Result of Memphis' #BLM Protest

Posted By on Mon, Jul 11, 2016 at 11:37 AM

Memphis 7-10-16 - CHRIS DAVIS
  • Chris Davis
  • Memphis 7-10-16
There's a sad story making the rounds on Social Media, built to function as a counter-narrative to more positive depictions of Sunday's peaceful Black Lives Matter demonstration. The short take: It's total B.S. But there's a longer take too, and here it is.

Via Snopes:
 "The story of the Black Lives Matter protest in Memphis and the child transplant patient bore many red flags of a parable and not a true story: the child in question was never identified by name, and the circumstances of his or her death (the gender varied) were unreported by the media despite being highly newsworthy. The only detail included the post, one announcing that the supposedly dead child was black, was tacked on as an afterthought — an ironic point intended to drive home a moral one."

You can read the whole thing here.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

MATA CEO Still Not Sure When Burgers Will Be Done

Posted By on Tue, Jul 5, 2016 at 11:58 AM

Try the potato salad.
  • Try the potato salad.
It’s Tuesday, July 5 and MATA CEO Ron Garrison still can’t say when the hamburgers he was grilling for an Independence Day cookout will be done. Just over 10-pounds of pre-formed ground beef patties and six packages of Oscar Meyer "classic style" hotdogs were purchased Saturday, July 2nd to provide food for guests at Garrison's 4th of July party. A charcoal fire was lit at approximately 2 p.m., Monday, and a rustic wooden picnic table was spread with chips, dips, slaw, baked beans, and three different kinds of potato salad.

As of 10 a.m. Tuesday, July 5, no hamburgers or hotdogs had been served.

“I’m hungry,” partygoer Cara Street said, as she and her husband Beale watched the sun come up Tuesday morning. “I know Ron’s cooking just as fast as he can, but seriously, what the hell? These are pre-formed hamburger patties and hot dogs, it’s not like he’s making Chili en Nogada, or Coq au Vin. It’s not even like he’s making bratwursts.”

Garrison’s friend Bobby, who helped light the charcoal using his surefire dryer lint technique, says the meal was delayed as a result of safety concerns. “Everybody wants to get a nice sear on their burgers,” he explained. “But what’s really important is the internal temperature of the meat.”

“We’re making progress, but cannot give a definite timeline on either the burgers, or the dogs,” Garrison said, dipping his grill mop into a pot of Wicker’s. 

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Woman Stabbed for Spilling Cheese Dip; It Wasn't Even Pancho's

Posted By on Sun, Jul 3, 2016 at 12:21 PM

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There needs to be an addendum to the old saying, "Don't cry over spilled milk." Don't stab people over spilled cheese dip, especially if it's not Pancho's.



Seriously, don't do that. 



A 35-year-old Memphis woman was rushed into surgery at Methodist hospital this morning after she wrecked a car she was driving to the emergency room.  She'd been stabbed by another woman who, according to reports, became unreasonably upset after the victim spilled a container of Rotel the two women were sharing with an unidentified male.



Ongoing. 








Friday, July 1, 2016

Zoo President Shot After Falling Into Gorilla Enclosure

Posted By on Fri, Jul 1, 2016 at 7:05 PM

Former friends Chuck & MJ
  • Former friends Chuck & MJ
Gorilla keeper Inna Myst says her team of large primate experts responded appropriately after Memphis Zoo President Chuck Brady fell into Primate Canyon's gorilla exhibit. "We understand the public's concern," Myst says. "We shot the chief executive of a major zoological attraction and Memphis deserves an explanation. I just want  everybody to understand that a lot of thought goes into our contingency plans and once Brady fell into the gorilla exhibit, taking him out was the only option that made sense."

According to Myst, Brady is "genetically hardwired" to be a dick. "This isn't really about the gorillas," she says. "If he hadn't been taken out of the picture quickly and efficiently, there's no doubt in my mind he'd have done tremendous self-inflicted damage to himself and to the zoo." 

Eyewitness and longtime Memphis Zoo member Clondyke Barr confirms Myst's assessment. "Brady spoke some really mean and, to my mind, completely unnecessary words to those gorillas. But he didn't seem dangerous," he says. "But then it was like he just couldn't help himself. Outta nowhere he chest bumps the hell outta this big monkey. Starts yelling about the status quo, and how little obese and crippled children shouldn't have to walk. Stuff like that. It was embarrassing as hell."

"He may have seemed reasonable to people who can't read CEO body language," Myst elaborates. "But we've spent years studying these creatures. They expect to be rewarded whether they make good decisions or bad decisions, and given a choice between any conciliatory action or pure assfaced dickery, we have strong reasons to believe that Brady will always choose the later. He'll tear the whole place apart — gorillas and all — and then expect someone to throw him some Monterey Jack cheese cubes."

Reports from the Zoo infirmary suggests that Brady, having no heart to stop, will make a full recovery and go on to bigger and better things in the future. "That's a completely natural outcome," Myst says.




Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Read Trump's Letter Soliciting Campaign Donations from Non-U.S. Citizens

Posted By on Wed, Jun 29, 2016 at 3:32 PM

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As you've probably heard by now, GOP presidential nominee Donald J. Trump has been sending fundraising emails to foreign citizens including British politicians and every member of the Parliament of Iceland. This has resulted in a legal complaint filed by the The Campaign Legal Center accusing the candidate of violating federal law. 

Fly on the Wall has obtained an email Trump's campaign sent to various UK officials including Pilsbury D'Bowie from the constituency of Welwyn Hatfield. Here's the full text.

To whom it may concern.
Please excuse me if I have infringe into your privacy. This may be  strange
introduction, but I have no option than to mail you. I am Donald J. Trump, the Republican candidate for President of the United States. I m presently trying to make America great again and stop crooked Hillary. Though I have not met with you, I believe one has to risk confidence in someone to succeed sometimes in life.
To stop crooked Hillry there will be costs of doing America's business for which I will need your beautiful assistance. When we take back our contry I will inevest in your contry thru you in the business of your picking.

• Real Estate Investment
• The Transport Industry
• 3)Five Star Hotels.

I await your response soonest and please include your direct phone number, full
name and contact address for easy communication.
Regards,
Donald J. Trump

Monday, June 27, 2016

"Memphis is Funny" Story Inspires New Website, Podcast

Posted By on Mon, Jun 27, 2016 at 4:19 PM

MITCHELL DUNNAM, BADASS.
Sometimes your babies have babies. And then those babies have babies. Cue "Circle of Life."

This week marks the debut of a new podcast connected to a slightly less new website inspired by a cover story I wrote back in March. (With bonus coverage here and here)
"Memphis is Funny," was my attempt to create a snapshot of the city's growing comedy scene. Memphisisfunny.com is a website devoted to all things Memphis and comedy-related. Memphis is Funny: the podcast is a weekly talk show on the OAM network. 

And guess who was the very first guest on Memphis is Funny: The Podcast? Never mind, I'll tell you. It's me
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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Jerry Lee Lewis is Having a Yard Sale

Killer deals y'all!

Posted By on Wed, Jun 22, 2016 at 6:57 PM

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Okay, it's an "estate sale," technically. But the point remains the same: There's gonna be a whole lotta selling going on in Nesbit, Mississippi.
Just think about it. This may be your one and only chance to own Jerry Lee Lewis' personal George Foreman Grill. Now, I can't say for sure that the Killer actually owns a George Foreman Grill, or that it will be for sale this Friday, but I can say for a fact — and if you doubt me, try me — if Jerry Lee does own such a device, and it is for sale, and there's somebody out there who thinks they're gonna buy it out from under my nose and steal my plan to launch a Great Meatballs of Fire food truck business, well... somebody's gonna get their ass whupped. That's all. 

Now, if we're all clear about Jerry Lee's George Foreman, here's what the Facebook announcement had to say.

"Jerry Lee and Judith Lewis, have decided to sell some of their long time belongings. Furniture, smaller items,kitchenware, personal JLL Memorabillia, and more available

Sale is Friday June 24 8am-6pm and again Saturday 8am-6pm



Some items will be posted to this event page as for sale, but any shipping or handling will be buyers responsibilty.

All items sold on property become the responsibility of the buyer to ship or handle.

Since I have had a lot of personal inquiries into the matter Dad(Jerry Lee) wants everyone to know he is not selling his property or leaving his home. After so many years of traveling the country, furnishing other homes, and then getting said furniture back he and Judith just have to much and would like to let some of it go."
And, here's some Linkage with details. 

Racist East Tennessee Politician Thinks "Leave it to Beaver" was Real?

Posted By on Wed, Jun 22, 2016 at 1:19 PM

Do it for the Beaver.
  • Do it for the Beaver.

Remember that moment in November 2008, following the election of President Obama, when serious news 

Rick AKA Dick
  • Rick AKA Dick
commentators actually bandied around the idea that we might be living in a "post-racial America?" Apparently nobody bothered to tell yahoo/U.S. House candidate Rick Tyler, who's currently running as an independent in Tennessee's 3rd Congressional District. 

Tyler has erected a campaign sign that says, "Make America White Again," and a second sign juxtaposing language from Martin Luther King's, "I Have a Dream," speech with a picture of the White House. A White House festooned with confederate flags, that is.

Classy, right?

Tyler also told WRCB news he was nostalgic for TV shows like Ozzie & Harriet, and the "Leave it to Beaver time when there were no break-ins; no violent crime; no mass immigration." And so on.

Because, you know, TV is real. 

According to the New York Daily News Tyler made a post on his website naming Republican Presidential candidate Donald Trump as an inspiration. That post has been taken down. 


Ward explains gender roles to Wally. 

UPDATE: The signs have been removed.

Shedding Some Light on an Abandoned Building at 82 S. Main

Do Artists Robin Salant and Terance Brown Hold the Secret to Life Itself?

Posted By on Wed, Jun 22, 2016 at 11:18 AM

Terance Brown and Robin Salant
  • Terance Brown and Robin Salant
I've got a mini-feature in this week's issue of The Memphis Flyer about artists Robin Salant and Terance Brown who are turning the abandoned building at 82 S. Main into an interactive, multi-story art installation. Instead of repeating that story here, I'll link it as soon as it comes on line. (LINK) But here's the short version.
Salant and Brown want to give the empty building a pulse. More than that, they want that pulse to respond to external stimulus, like an actual human heartbeat. 
It's great to watch how projects like "Urban Meridians" and Salant's previous solar-powered work at Sears Crosstown, can capture imaginations and change the way people think about and respond to big, empty spaces. It's also fun going into old buildings before they're revitalized, just to see what's left over from its previous lives. 
This Friday night at 8:30 Salant and Brown will flip the switch on "Urban Meridians," and 82 S. Main will start working hard to get your attention by lighting up, throbbing with light, and mysteriously knocking against its own ground floor windows (thanks to industrial fans and ball-pit balls). In the meantime, here are a handful of images from inside one of Main Street's empty containers
Urban decay or Jackson Pollock?
  • Urban decay or Jackson Pollock?
Going up?
  • Going up?
Heartbeats illustrated.
  • Heartbeats illustrated.
Still life with ladder.
  • Still life with ladder.
Corner office
  • Corner office
Hot tin roof. Well, ceiling anyway.
  • Hot tin roof. Well, ceiling anyway.
Solar lighting.
  • Solar lighting.
Rigging.
  • Rigging.
Tile.
  • Tile.
More modern decay.
  • More modern decay.
View from the top part 1.
  • View from the top part 1.
View from the top part 2.
  • View from the top part 2.
Elevator operator
  • Elevator operator
Going down
  • Going down

Friday, June 17, 2016

Jerry Lawler Suspended from WWE Following Domestic Incident

Posted By on Fri, Jun 17, 2016 at 11:00 AM

He said...
  • He said...
Cue "Also Sprach Zarathustra"...

Did he hit her? Did she kick him in the groin? And who put the pistol on the counter?
 
Jerry Lawler, the 66-year-old King of Memphis wrasslin' has been suspended indefinitely  from the WWE, pending the outcome of a domestic assault arrest. Lawler and his 27-year-old fiancee Lauryn McBride were both taken into custody early Friday morning following a violent encounter at Lawler's East Memphis residence. 
She said...
  • She said...

According to reports fire was thrown. Well, a candle, anyway

Lawler, whose feud with comedian Andy Kaufman helped to popularize professional sports entertainment — AKA wrasslin' — recently opened a club on Beale Street. His likeness — or something like his likeness — also appears on Overton Square, as a photo opportunity for visitors. 

King of Overton Square, Ma!
  • King of Overton Square, Ma!
Lawler was arrested once before for bad behavior following a traffic violation. 

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Man Arrested for Indecent Exposure Gets Naked in Court

Posted By on Thu, Jun 16, 2016 at 2:37 PM

Derrick Thomas, enjoying himself.
  • Derrick Thomas, enjoying himself.
If you're going down, you might as well go down swinging. Am I right?

Derrick Thomas, arrested in Jonesboro, Arkansas last month for indecent exposure and "enjoying himself," decided to expose himself again. This time in Judge Keith Blackman’s courtroom. Yesterday. 

According to news reports Thomas was granted permission to leave the courtroom for a drink of water. He returned — running by all accounts — with his shirt off, his pants around his ankles, and his arms in the air. 

 “Court is back in session,” Thomas was quoted as saying. 

Thomas laughed as three police officers forced his pants up and removed him from the courtroom. Then he added something to the effect of, “They will put [on my] tombstone that [I] was the one that got naked in the courtroom.”

Everybody has a bucket list, apparently. 


Wednesday, June 15, 2016

New Chemical Element Named For Tennessee

Posted By on Wed, Jun 15, 2016 at 4:33 PM

Turning the Table
  • Turning the Table

The periodic table of elements has four new entries, and one of them bears the name of the Volunteer State. Element 117 was discovered in 2010 by the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research (JINR), a collaboration between Russian and American scientists who are trying to create ever-heavier elements. 117 was tentatively named “ununseptium”, but today the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry announced that its official name will henceforth be “Tennessine”. Since the Joint Institute for Nuclear Research discovered two different elements at the same time, the Russian team was allowed to name element 115 “Moscovium”, and the American team, based in Oak Ridge, was given rights to name 117 Tennessine. Its chemical symbol is Ts. The “-ine” suffix indicates it is a part of the group of elements known as halogens. 
Like most elements that far down the periodic table, Tennessine is extremely unstable, with a half-life of less than one second. Nevertheless, the JINR researchers believe its existence proves the longstanding theoretical concept of the “island of stability”, a predicted set of superheavy atomic nuclei whose configurations would lead to much longer-lived elements.

The two other elements named today are 113 Nihonium, which was named for Japan where it was discovered, and 118 Oganesson, which was named for its discoverer Yuri Oganessian.

Here’s a delightful video with more information on this late breaking chemistry news. 


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Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Tony Stark Visits Memphis, Brings Iron Man Armor

Posted By on Tue, Jun 14, 2016 at 3:56 PM

He is Iron Man.
Memphis looms large in American pop culture history, and your pesky Fly on the Wall likes to keep readers informed when the Bluff City’s notably name-checked in movies, TV shows, comic books and other media. For example, the rooftops of Uptown were showcased in Invincible Iron Man #4, which was originally published last December, but just became available to digital Marvel Unlimited subscribers last week.

Here's the shot: Billionaire industrialist/Golden Avenger Tony Stark was supposed to visit sick kids at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital but, in typical Stark fashion, he forgot about the appointment and tried to bail.
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Always the futurist Stark anticipated this craven moment and pre-recorded a video of himself shaming his future self for being such predictable dick. So, of course he goes to St. Jude, brings his Iron Man armor, and has a great time with all the kids. Well, until Dr. Doom shows up and things get weird.

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So yeah, the images aren't all the Memphis-y. Even the rooftop conversation with Doc. Doom is pretty generic. Nevertheless, that happened. 

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