Ranting

Memphasis > Where There’s Smoke

April 3rd, 2014

DON’T WAIT FOR THE FIRE TO FIND THE WATER. Neglect and denial burns in empty buildings and blighted neighborhoods, futures are hazy, moods are dark and the smoke from all of it chokes cities and sends those able to flee to greener ground at the edges, leaving behind a bitter landscape, a smoldering threat. Those fleeing, those who would neglect and deny the problem ...

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Memphasis > Unique Flavor

March 27th, 2014

MEMPHIS RITUAL. The Memphis of Memphis is best observed and shared around tables, best accompanied by good food, and best expressed in good stories. Mildred’s story, for instance. On a Downtown basement wall in the oldest public building in Memphis, Calvary Episcopal Church, there’s a plaque. That’s not unusual for a church wall, but this ...

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Memphasis > 100 Homage

March 20th, 2014

38 STORIES, THOUSANDS OF STORIES. I remember when the big hulk was a big deal, its unimaginative gray mass full of imagination and local color. On our first date in 1967, I took Nora to the Top Of The 100. I’ll never forget when she leaned over the table, her blue eyes wide, and said, “You eat parsley?” The building was two years old and Top Of The ...

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Memphasis > Talking Sex

March 13th, 2014

ALL OF OUR COLLEGE PRESIDENTS SHOULD GET SEXY. The Tennessee General Assembly has long been afraid of sex. When I was a UT student in the late sixties, the Tennessee legislature proposed a law making it illegal for anyone under the age of 18 to view nude art. On the humanities complex plaza, stood and still stands a huge statue of Europa and the Bull – both ...

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Memphasis > Sunny Side Up

March 6th, 2014

WHAT’S FOR BREAKFAST? I’m skeptical of city pep rallies because they tend to be more about the pep than any solutions worth rallying around, the cheerleading more cheering than leading. I’m also skeptical of anyone who’s particularly peppy first thing in the morning. Ergo, I was skeptical when I dragged myself into my first Breakfast Club ...

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