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Posted: Apr 5, 2006 1:25 am
A student just sent me this:

I was just assigned to write an un-Elvis guide to Memphis for my media writing class and I need direct quotes from at least two people. Could you be one of my two? I'm writing about the Cooper/Young district, Overton Square, the Dixon, the Botanical Gardens, STAX, Beale Street and Hollywood Rayfords to name a few. Anything punk specific would be great! If you have any shops, restaurants or any other suggestions, please reply back with a quotable statement on each spot. I really appreciate your contribution. You will be cited within the article. Thanks again!

I've already sent my list. Can you all think of anything I might have forgotten???

Posted: Apr 5, 2006 1:54 am
oh yeah, this is a former student...she's in college now. Go easy, fellas!
Posted: Apr 5, 2006 2:16 am
Earnestine and Hazel's?
The river as a place to hang out...Tom Lee and the greenspace in front of Harbor Town
BBQ joints!
The trinity of Hi-Tone, Buccaneer, and Murphys?

And tell her "Rayfords" is spelled "Raifords"
Posted: Apr 7, 2006 1:57 am
Tommy, what was on your list so I do not duplicate?
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 7:19 am
My List:

The TROUBLE guide to Memphis:
The best parts of Memphis are the things that arent in the tourist books. In fact, most Memphians never go to whats GREAT about this town. Its one of the great ironies of the best city in the world. People would rather have their culture spoon-fed to them than venture out from the neighborhoods to parts of the town where every building doesnt have a twin next door.

Things that suck:
Graceleand sucks. Fuck that bloated drug addict.

The Peabody and its ducks suck. Not really, but its the first thing in travel guides (besides the Elvis stuff), and its the last place I want to go around here. Actually, the people-watching at the bar on Friday nights is hilarious. You can watch floozies hit on the out-of-town businessmen all night and try to get free drinks.

Beale Street sucks.-Its commercial Babylon.

The Pyramid REALLY sucks. It was a dumb idea when it was built, and now its a derelict dumb idea.

The Grizzlies suck. Well, they do. Whos ever heard of a Griz in Memphis, TN?? The fellas i've, met have all been nice guys, though.

Hueys sucks-There are LOTS of better burgers around, but Memphians have their heads too far up their own asses to bother looking for them. At least there are now locations in Germantown and Collierville. Stay in the 'burbs, suckers!

Despite a strong season, Tigers basketball sucks. Its a team of thugs and assholes. Fuck em.

Rendezvous doesnt suck, but it sure as HELL isnt the best BBQ in town-not by a damn sight!

Things that dont suck:

Guss Fried Chicken-the only restaurant to which Ive been in my life that actually lives up to the hype. It is simply the best chicken in the world. Special of the Day: chicken.

Cozy Corner-best ribs in town. THIS is the place that gives Charlie Vergos nightmares. The Cornish game hen is also delightful.

Paynes-best BBQ sandwich in town. Two words: fuck Corkys.

Stax-This is the single best music-centric thing in town. Stax has amazing tunes and an amazing museum. Stax is also the prefect metaphor for the city: Black and white people doing cool shit together only to be fucked over by bad business decisions and general apathy.

Goner Records-Best record store in the world. Eric Oblivian and Zac Solution have done their town proud. Not only is it the only place in the tri-state area where you can buy Big Balls and the Great White Idiot records, but its also the home of a diverse record label, and a bi-annual music fest. Ill be a Goner until I die.

The Lamplighter-Shirly makes good burgers and pours good cheap beer. Nuff said.

The Beer Joint-You cant cuss here (theyll kick you out), but a sixty year old waitress will try to get in your pants every time. Its a classic.

Rhodes College. It it wasnt for Rhodes, Id never have been to Memphis. Love my college and my city. An Ivy League education for a fraction of the price, the most beautiful campus in the world, and Profs who actually love their jobs and care for their students. Go Lynx!!

Other places of interest:
P&H Caf-best burger in Memphis
La Taqueria Guadalapana (sp?)-only authentic Mexican restaurant in a town with a rapidly grow(n)ing Hispanic population.
Malco Drive-In on Summer-Bring a cooler of beer and watch the pictures as they fly through the air! The perfect summer night.
Last Chance records-the OTHER good record store in town.
Sun Studios-Tourist trap, but it IS the birthplace of ROCK AND ROLL.
Chickasaw Gardens-THIS is how rich people are supposed to live.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 7:30 am
Holy shit. That's it? That's all you got for the best? Tommy, you can play through my bass cabinet any day, but that list sucks.

Gimmie 'till tomorrow.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 7:32 am
Eat a turd; I wrote that shit on a school night, DF.
And there are term papers still left to grade...
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 3:37 pm
Burkes Book Store - Even with 20+ years of working independent book retail, I was so impressed by this store I looked at every shelf, because I didn't want to miss a thing. And yes, I bought 2 books I'd been looking for.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 4:05 pm | Edited by: fierydrunk
Despite a strong season, Tigers basketball sucks. Its a team of thugs and assholes. Fuck em.

WHAT???? Personal knowledge of some things we don't know? Are you thinking of last year's team? This years Tigers were par-to-MUCH improved in terms of attitude.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 4:08 pm
And...just a question, but is Guadalapana really still the only "authentic" Mexican in town at this point?
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 4:56 pm
Fiery...you're probably right (in both cases). I was in a contrary mood. I know there are a lot of Griz and Tigers fans around here. And I know the lists sucks; that's why I'm asking for help.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 5:19 pm
I hear you. I would totally help out but I haven't been home in 2 years! I would hope that there were more and varied authentic Mexican places out there by now. I like that place, but it ain't the best I've had...at least my huevos rancheros weren't.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 5:20 pm
Tommy, I re-read the student's question without beer this morning, and realized the places I like may not fit into her original question. Anyway.

Great places to take folks visiting in Memphis (not in any particular order):

1. Ornamental Metal Museum - Metalworks are nifty, but also check out across the street in DeSoto Park; there's a bricked-arched door in the side of the hill. That hill is one of a pair of Indian mounds, and that door used to lead to a gunpowder magazine for old Civil War Fort Pickering.

2. Central Station - I've said it a few times on here, go down hand have a tourist put their foot on one of those train rails. Then explain to them that this rail has helped haul a large percentage of really great musicians going from New Orleans to Memphis, to St. Louis, to Chicago in the early to mid 20th century.

3. The Main Liabrary, The Memphis Room - Need I say more?

4. The weird-ass, giant, metal atlas sculpture at the Poplar/Union Exchange.

5. Lowenstein Mansion - House for wayward women and hospital for yellow fever folks.

6. Crazy little old cemetary on Carnes - Houses in the U of M area all over the place and a small, unkempt lot in the middle of the neighborhood. It's overgrown and if you were walking past it, you might miss it. There are only a handfull of headstones left, but they date back to at least 1887. Actually, Memphis has many fascinating cemetaries in strange places.

8. South Main is full of nifty history, including the old whorehouse, Earnestine & Hazels.

9. The Memphis Zoo/Overton Park/Brooks Museum/Shell - You could make an entire day of that.

10. Cobble Stones on the river - Tell them that the giant Iron rings coming out of the ground were where they used to chain slaves before trading at Auction. Neither the rings were used for that, nor the giant cement block at Auction were used to sell slaves, but a lot of Memphians still believe that to this day.

11. Pink Palace Museum and all the history behind it.

12. Summer Avenue - What do you want today? BBQ? Bowling? Churches? Hookers? A car? College? Drive-In Movie? Strip Club? Music Store? Liquor? Antiques? Thrift Stores? Novelty Toys? Adult Toys? Foods of many ethnicity? Summer has everything. Well except the Admiral Benbow and the Market Basket. Those ain't there no more.

13. Chucalissa - The OG Memphians, but don't go in the summer - it gets a little rank smelling.

14. That tiny park next to the hi-rise hotel (the one with the green neon band around the top) on the bluff.

15. Shelby Forrest
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 5:26 pm
The Main Liabrary, The Memphis Room - Need I say more?

"Liabrary"? Are you shuckin' & jivin' over there at this hour?

Does the new Memphis Room still have that awesome card catalog with all the old photos of Memphis that you can look up by street address? I used to sit in there for hours and look at old photos of Midtown and Downtown.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 5:40 pm
Akshully, Fiery, I haven't been in the Memphis Room in quite some time, but they did when I was there. So I called them just now and asked. Indeed, they do. And the lady who answered must think I'm crazy now.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 5:48 pm
Remember LINC?

Do they still have that?

(Call 'em back!)
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 5:50 pm
They do. That's who I called!

(I think I will!)
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 5:56 pm

Pranking LINC...I love it.

I wonder how many times LINC has gotten that call, "Hey LINC---Do you still have LINC?"
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 6:15 pm
I used to prank call the Homework Hotline all the time.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 8:13 pm
I think i remember the artist who did the world sculpture thingy said it was for sale in the flyer a few years back. boy it would suck if that thing was sold and disappeared.
Posted: Apr 8, 2006 11:55 pm
tell her about the soul nites buckwilders and the hook up put on. well, and all the other dj's and musicians involved. i've only lived here 3 years, but so far it's my favorite happening. well, gonerfest, obviously. apples and oranges, though.
Posted: Apr 9, 2006 7:04 pm
I used to prank call the Homework Hotline all the time.


there was another after school hotline called "grandma please"
that one was fun...
and it came out right abut the time MC hammer was on the "hammer please dont hurt 'em" tour.
naturally pre-teen evolution took over and we got "the grandma please don't hurt'em tour"

i'm retarded.
Posted: Apr 9, 2006 7:05 pm
oh and tommy..go read "it came from memphis" by robert gordon...you'll fall in love with the city all over again
Posted: Apr 10, 2006 3:57 am
I checked this out at the suggestion of Tommy Trouble - thanks.

I cannot be mad at someone for being passionate about their life, town, hobbies...but, lets be honest once the tuition and fees of any school gets to be double what the average Memphis household makes in a year can it really be considered a bargain? No offense to Rhodes, it is exceptional for the city to have a top tier (top 50 liberal arts) school. I never thought about this shit until I had a kid. I cringe at the thought of him even going to my undergraduate college (ranked 70 - not even one of the big players) that often boasts affordable tuition and fees. When did $30,000 a year become affordable? Ah the rants of middle and upper class white people.

to echo earlier posts:
Shelby Farms, Shelby Forrest, Greenbelt Park - good

now my own thoughts:

Chickasaw Country Club and the Country Club of Memphis where old black guys in white uniforms carry the golf clubs of fat rich white guys - bad

Anyway, free yearly membership to the metal museum for Jack Stands for putting us on his list
Posted: Apr 10, 2006 6:18 am
And I thought 35 grand was bad for a 2-year...

free yearly membership to the metal museum...for putting us on his list

Posted: Apr 10, 2006 7:12 am
Yes Jack, email me your address and I will make sure you get a comp'd membership
Posted: Apr 11, 2006 2:49 am | Edited by: Tommy Trouble
Way to shit on a compliment, Chuck.

I never said Rhodes was a bargain or inexpensive. I said it was less expensive than an Ivy League school.

But now that you mention it (in chronological order)...
1. I received a great education.
2. I spent four of the happiest years of my life there.
3. I met a LOT of life long friends there.
4. I met most of my band there.
5. I met my wife there.
6. Through the English department, I made connections that landed me a job teaching honors classes in the county school district immediately after graduation.
7. I've had a great summer job coaching swimnming since I've graduated.
8. I still enjoy social contact with many of my profs/coaches.
9. A free lifetime membership to the gym/pool.

I think if the tuition was twice as expensive,in the long run, it'd still be a hell of a deal.
I love my alma matter. Period.

I also love my high school, and it was free!
Posted: Apr 11, 2006 2:58 am
When did you go to Rhodes?
My ex is an alumnus, and has to pay for the gym/pool membership!
He did make great lifelong friends, though.
Posted: Apr 11, 2006 3:02 am
wild bills social club

st. jude children research.
Posted: Apr 11, 2006 4:17 am
Sorry Tom, I understand. My rant had nothing to do with you or Rhodes. I would never give up my undergrad experience for anything -- friends, education, the fact that for four years my only job was to go to class. You could take Rhodes out of the sentence. All decent liberal arts schools have moved into that $30K range, Harvard is actually the bargain of $29K. I suppose I meant where ten years (when we were undergrads) ago the costs for a small liberal arts education was far less. Current tuition across the board has grown far faster than average wages and it sucks that if someone wants to have the same experiences that we had, they are fucked in a sense. Student loan rates went up 2 points this year and a direct loans note on $100,000 can push close to $750 a month and if rates go back to where they were in the early nineties then that $750 a month can become $900. I am with you on loving your school. Be mad if you want, I have no issue with you or Rhodes...I have employees who are fresh from college and it is just depressing sometimes to see a twenty two year old art school grad have to cough up $600 and $700 a month right off the top. Sorry for getting off topic and I am sorry for the family friend you guys lost. I did not know that when you guys were over here the other night.
Posted: Apr 11, 2006 3:24 pm | Edited by: luteinizer
Brooks Museum (right now they have a great colllection of African American Portraiture)- and the Brushmark I hear is tasty.

Lichterman - neat animals and plants that are indeginous to this area (the turtles in the lake are huge) And we should be bringing attention to the fact that the big buildings being built in that neighborhood are screwing up the drainage at the park, dumping sewer water through it, (and kudzu) is destroying the center.

The Zoo- I don't care what you people sat, I think the zoo rocks (and they had a really good plant sale last weekend)

The Dixon- best place to see a play, the symphony, or opera is in the out door lawn with a bottle of wine and lunch. (you put this one at the top, but it is one of my favorites)
Posted: Apr 11, 2006 3:27 pm
Oh and their are tons of authentic restaurants, it is just easy to go to Guad. Look to the Hills. Tons of good stuff out there.
Posted: Apr 12, 2006 12:28 am
Take a stroll down the Main Street Mall starting at Adams and continue until you get to Beale. If you take the time to look at the different facades of the businesses of all these connecting buildings (especially the ones on the west side) you will be amazed at the intricate and ornate aspects of the architecture. While the mall might have been a bust for Main Street, seeing the original architecture still surviving is a treat--and a rarity given the hundreds of important architecturally historical residences and public buildings that have been destroyed in the name of progress.
Posted: Apr 12, 2006 12:33 am
Thanks for the help, everyone. The kid has turned in her essay. Maybe she'll send it to me and let me post it when she gets it back.

Things about which I'm happy for your reminders:
The Zoo
Autozone park (I forgot about this one)
The Brooks

hope to see everyone on Thursday @ the Hi-Tone!
Posted: Apr 16, 2006 5:56 am
Did I miss something, or did nobody bother to mention Al Green and his church?
Posted: Apr 17, 2006 4:56 am
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