What a difference a week makes. Last Tuesday, here at the Flyer we were all chattering about the paper's makeover and the U of M's chances against Ole Miss. This week, we're forced to contemplate the forthcoming makeover of a million lives and the Gulf Coast's chances for recovery from a horrific disaster, the magnitude of which is still unfolding.
The Commercial Appeal, various Web sites, and the network news outlets have done a good job covering the story of Hurricane Katrina and providing information about ways we can all help out. We urge you to do what you can to assist in welcoming the thousands of new Memphians who have arrived in recent days. Memphis is, after all, known as the City of Good Abode. Now, more than ever, we need to live up to that reputation.
And we should take a moment to pause and be thankful for so much that we all take for granted: a job, a home, a family -- alive and in one place. Tough days lie ahead for those who have to rebuild their lives from scratch. Lend a hand. Be a Good Samaritan. If you see a car with Louisiana plates, there's a good chance the occupants are hurting. Maybe you can help.
That said, I need to mention a change in the Flyer's fall schedule (more fallout from Katrina, however trivial it may seem at this point): Our annual "Best of Memphis" issue -- and the accompanying party -- has been moved from the September 29th issue to a date (yet to be decided) in October.
In another housekeeping note, News of the Weird is absent this week, chased out of the paper for space considerations by our Katrina stories. It will return, weird as ever, next week.
See you at the gas pump.
Bruce VanWyngarden, Editor
I'm writing this from the restroom facility at Big Hill Pond State Park in southern McNairy County. On Monday, I commandeered the building, which contains the men's and women's restrooms, some racks of pamphlets, and two vending machines. There's no one here right now, but I plan to stay as long as necessary to protest the fact that the state of Tennessee is run by oppressive know-nothings who wouldn't know small government — or freedom, for that matter — if it bit them on their considerable backsides ...
A couple weeks ago in this space, I jokingly wrote that Memphis Airport Authority head Jack Sammons had agreed to become the executive editor of the Flyer. At least, I thought I was joking ...