Random pics from the past two weeks

(For those of you looking for the Fire Sale list, scroll past all this crap and it’s the next post down.)

I haven’t had much time to get pics out of the camera the past two weeks, so today I’ll catch up.  Here are the highlights:


The Wine Race parade.  I believe this was Club 152.  Note that the girls have tube tops on.


Leslie got a Call-a-Cab from Wet Willie’s, a very good decision.  Note that Leslie has a tube top on.


The ladies shaking their stuff at the Queen of the Vine contest


Stella the dog watching the wine relay


Saucer people at Wine Race


Jean from Bardog Tavern answers her question in the Queen of the Vine contest


Nicole from the Silly Goose answers her question


Post-race, Otto poses with the Queen of the Vine winner.


Why do Susie and Audra look so offended?  Because I hung out with them for a while on Music Fest Friday, then blogged that the highlight of the early evening was standing on the Silly Goose’s patio watching Air Traffic Mike eat a hot dog.


Prior to going to Music Fest on Sunday, we stopped at the Silly Goose for their build-your-own Bloody Mary bar.  Here’s a pic of the Nuh-Uh Girl eating the carrot that garnished her drink.


Here’s a pic of the Nuh-Uh Girl eating off Esther’s plate.


A view of muddy Music Fest from the Flyer tent.


The rain caused lots of people to take refuge in the Flyer tent.


After years of vegetarianism, Mikey has rediscovered the joy of eating tasty dead animals.


Here’s a pic of the Nuh-Uh Girl eating Corky’s BBQ in the Flyer tent.


Jen, Frank, and Stephanie at the Silly Goose’s Cinco de Mayo party.  Note that Stephanie has a tube top on.


The burrito eating contest at the Goose


After the contest, the Nuh-Uh Girl picked up one of the leftover burritos and ate it.


The chefs at the Peabody prepare special hors d’ouevres for the VIP section at the Thursday rooftop parties.  Here’s a pic of the Nuh-Uh Girl eating an open-faced roast beef sandwich.

This weekend will probably be a slow one for picture-taking, but I’m going to make sure that all three camera batteries are fully charged for BBQ Fest next week.  All right, caught up on pictures, now it’s time for a beer.

Flying Saucer birthday – 12 Fire Sales today

(Updated 12:38 PM:  I just got a call from someone who’s at the Saucer.  ALL TWELVE are on Fire Sale as of now, but… every hour they take one away.  So there will be 11 beers on Fire Sale at 1 PM, 10 at 2 PM, and so on.  No idea which beer will be taken away each hour.)

Today is the Downtown Flying Saucer’s 12th birthday, and the Saucer is celebrating the occasion by putting 12 beers on Fire Sale.  Counting down from noon to midnight, they’ll have a different beer on Fire Sale each hour for $2.75.  Here are the 12 beers:

  • Anchor Steam
  • Anchor Liberty
  • Yazoo Pale Ale
  • Yazoo Dos Perros
  • Woodchuck Amber Cider
  • Woodchuck Pear Cider
  • New Belgium Mighty Arrow
  • New Belgium Fat Tire
  • Spaten Oktoberfest
  • Spaten Franzkiskaner
  • Murphy’s Stout
  • Murphy’s Amber

If you need to knock some beers off your quest for the 200-beer Ring of Honor, today’s a good day to do it for cheap.  They’ll also have the $2 Mystery Beer tub, and FreeWorld plays tonight at 9:30.

Don’t know how I’m going to tweet this to my @firesale Twitter account – no way all those beers will fit in 140 characters.  Guess I’ll just say “12 beers on Fire Sale” and refer them here.

Lots of birthdays today… looks like I’ll be going to a birthday party tonight at Bluefin… although I wonder what kind of condition I’ll be in after a day of drinking Fire Sales and mystery beers.

Also happy birthday to my friend Nicole, who will probably get mad at me for picking the Saucer’s birthday party over hers, but I can walk to the Saucer.

Whew… I need to download 2 weeks worth of pics off the camera and do a “random pics” post… look for it later today unless I get distracted.

Thur update: Mpact Outlet, rooftop parties, Dempseys at Saucer tonight, Hollywood Disco contest, and more

Mpact Memphis will hold their Mpact Outlet program tonight at Pearl’s Oyster House at Main and Pontotoc from 6 to 8 PM. This is their monthly program where they lay out ways to get involved in Mpact’s volunteering and networking programs. There will be free giveaways as well. Free to members and those who join at the event; $5 for others. Pearl’s has some great seafood, so be sure to eat while you’re there.

Looks like good weather for rooftop parties tonight… the Weather Channel is predicting sunny with a 20% chance of rain, high 85, low 70. ’80s cover band Venus Mission plays the Peabody – $5 cover, free for ladies before 8 PM. Seems like the Peabody rooftop events have improved big-time this year. One week they had a free build-your-own slider bar, and the Nuh-Uh Girl told me another week they had a taco bar… and this was part of the regular admission, not the VIP section where there are additional hors d’ouevres.

Over at the Madison, Grace Askew with Groundspeak plays tonight. She and the band are described as “a little soul, folk, country, and a New Orleans sound.”

Post-rooftop, the Dempseys play the Saucer at 9:30. Their crazed rockabilly act is always fun to watch.

Over at the Red Rooster, the “Chicklette of the Week” who wins their “You’ve Got the Look” contest will win a Diamond Tennis Bracelet by Platinum Jewelers.

I’ll definitely hit the Peabody rooftop tonight. Most likely I’ll be at the Saucer afterward, but not for sure… I like to leave plans open for later. Maybe I’ll be flying the saucer, or maybe I’ll get silly like a goose, or maybe I’ll slim things down a bit. Maybe the evening will go to the dogs. I might even rock out with my cock out. One thing’s for sure though, I won’t be chillin’ like a villain.

Coming up this weekend, Hollywood Disco at Mulberry and Vance will have a contest. Whoever brings the largest group to the club this weekend will win a free party (no cover, cash bar, anytime except 10 PM-4 AM Friday-Saturday). Just tell Angie at the booth how many are in your party, and give her your name and cell number so she can contact you if you win. Winner will be called Sunday.

Eating a Frosty from Wendy’s as I type this… wonder how my health guru AL would feel about a Frosty and nothing else for lunch.  All right, that’s enough for now, back to work…

Wed update: Cigar store, clothing sale, pork contest, and more

Correction to the last post: I think my Twitter handle is @firesale, not @whatsthefiresale. Shows how much interest I have in Twitter, that I don’t even know my own username. Anyway, you can follow me there if you want to keep up with what beer is on $2.75 Fire Sale at the Saucer.

Yesterday the Memphis Business Journal reported that a new business will open at 6 S. Main – a cigar store. That’s right between Winfield’s clothing/shoe store and my building, Number 10 Main. Hmmm we already have a cigar store that’s an institution Downtown – the Tobacco Bowl – and it’s a block and a half away. I wonder if both will be successful given the close proximity. I’d like to see them both succeed but the Tobacco Bowl has been a fixture Downtown for many years, and if I smoked I’d likely continue to shop there. The Tobacco Bowl also has a coffee bar and free Wi-Fi.

The Commercial Appeal reports that Crye-Leike is opening a new full-service real estate office at 8 S. Third, and is inheriting several brokers and condo projects from Henry Turley Co.

Also in the CA today, a museum focusing on the work of photographer Ernest Withers is planned for 333 Beale.

Shelton Clothiers is doing a 20% off the entire store sale for the month of May. They sell suits, casual wear, and other fine men’s clothing and accessories and are located on the Main Street Mall just north of Peabody Place.

There will be a contest to find Memphis’ #1 pork fan at BBQ Fest from 3 to 5 PM Friday, May 15 and Saturday, May 16. The “Pork: The Other White Meat” Tour invites you to show your passion about pork, whether you do a rap, a jingle, a song, or whatever suits you. For every entry the tour will donate 10 pounds of pork to a local Memphis food bank, so you’re helping others by participating. The winner will receive a $500 gift card to Sam’s Club. You can also sample pork loin, take home recipes, and enter to win an oil-less fryer and other prizes. For more info go to TheOtherWhiteMeat.com.

In other BBQ Fest news, if you’re on a team, Memphis in May has canceled Saturday load-in because the park is too muddy.  Teams will have to get it all done Sunday.

Quick recap of last night: On my way out to the bar, I ran into the Filipina girl who had a problem with my “I LOVE ROMANIAN GIRLS” shirt last week. Ended up having a couple of beers with her at the Saucer window. She left to go meet up with her parents, and I moved inside for the first half of trivia, then walked over to the Silly Goose to observe their burrito eating contest.

When I saw the burritos I was real glad I had refused to enter. I was expecting homemade burritos made with the same meat they put in their $2 Tuesday tacos; but, no, the burritos were the 48-cent frozen bean and cheese Jose Ole variety that you buy at the convenience store. GROSS! I’d recommend keeping a 10-foot distance today from anyone who was in the contest last night. The winners were 1) the guy from Club 152 whose name I forgot; 2) Paula Raiford; and 3) “The” Sam from the Red Rooster. All the skinny people won. The 152 guy put down five and a half burritos in 5 minutes. I still think the Nuh-Uh Girl could have taken him. After the contest there were leftover burritos on the table and she picked one up and ate it.

Then I went to Huey’s with my friend Nick. “My personal trainer is going to make me pay for this,” he said as a munched a Texas Toast burger. He told me that she tries to work her clients so hard that they puke, especially when they’ve been bad the day before and eaten forbidden food. Wow this personal trainer thing sounds like a really bad idea.

I’m having a Double with cheese from Wendy’s as I type this.  No personal trainer to get mad at me.


I’m getting snowed under with communication from e-mail, Facebook, LinkedIn, MySpace, etc. I think it’s time to do a post on the best ways to communicate with me.

The best way to communicate with me is e-mail. My main address is paul@paulryburn.com. You may have seen e-mail from paul.ryburn@gmail.com as well… it all goes to the same place, so use either one.

You are more than welcome to send me stuff to mention in the blog, or sites you want me to look at… however, please understand that it’s on an “as I get to it” basis. I started a full-time job on March 23, so I have 40 hours a week less free time than I used to. It’s also outdoor festival season, and I’ve been super busy and have had very little time to catch up on e-mail and stuff has slipped through the cracks. If I don’t respond within a reasonable time, send it again.


I use Facebook regularly. If you’re a reader of this blog, you’re welcome to friend me on Facebook. However, if I won’t immediately know who you are when I see your name/profile pic, you might want to include a message with your friend request saying who you are (just “hey, I’m a regular reader of your blog” is a good start). I tend to ignore requests where I don’t immediately recognize the requester, there’s no message, and I don’t see that we have friends in common.

You’re welcome to communicate with me via Facebook messages (both Wall and private messages), but if it’s important and if it’s not something related to other material on Facebook, your best bet is to send it to my regular e-mail. That will funnel it to my Gmail, where I can put a star next to your message so I’ll be reminded to respond when I get a chance.

I do look at the Facebook Events quite often, and use them as material for my blog, so if you send me an event invitation to a public event, there’s a good chance I’ll see it and post about it.


MySpace sucks. Plain and simple. I don’t know why I haven’t bothered deleting my account yet. If you’ve sent me a friend request on MySpace within the past 2 months, I’ve probably ignored it. Same goes for messages. Nothing personal against you if you have – it’s just that I don’t see the point in having a MySpace account anymore. Try contacting me using one of the other methods.


I have a LinkedIn account. As with Facebook, you’re welcome to add me as a professional contact if you’re a regular blog reader. Again, if we don’t know each other well personally, you may want to leave a note telling me who you are.

You can message me on LinkedIn, but you’re more likely to get a response if you use e-mail instead.

I have good relationships with recruiters here in town and get LinkedIn messages about jobs all the time. I post some of these to my blog to help my recruiter friends out. You’re welcome to respond if you’re job hunting. However, if the post is more than 3 days old, I’ve likely forgotten about it and will have no idea what you’re referring to when you respond. In this case it’s best to say “the position you mentioned in your Monday Update post from April 20.” That way I can go look up the post and what job you’re referring to.


I’m @whatsthefiresale on Twitter.  I use it to broadcast the $2.75 Fire Sales the Flying Saucer runs Tuesday through Sunday.  They don’t pay me for this – it’s just a service to my fellow beer drinkers.  Although, now that I’m working it’s sometimes 6 PM or later before I get the Fire Sale up.  If you see it before I do and have my phone number, text it to me and I’ll text it to Twitter.  I only broadcast Fire Sales, not personal tweets.  I just started following other people and believe Twitter will be a source of blog material in the months to come.

And that will wrap it up… the best ways to get in touch with me in this era of communication overload. Maybe one day this blog will produce a full-time income and I’ll have ample time to follow up on everything that hits my Inbox and all the social media sites, but I’m not there yet.

I’m skipping trivia tonight… actually, I may stop by for a Happy Hour beer or two, but I plan on leaving the Saucer around 7 for Cinco de Mayo parties. The Silly Goose (celebrity burrito eating contest, 8:30) looks like it’ll be a stop on my route, and possibly Bardog (air guitar competition, 8:00) and Kooky Canuck ($2 34 oz. margaritas all day) as well.

Mon evening update: Metal Museum, haircuts, Bangkok Alley, SMA meeting, Eclectic Eye contest, Project Pat at Hard Rock and more

Odd fact I discovered tonight while surfing Wikipedia… I share a birthday (but not a birth year) with the oldest player currently active in Major League Baseball.  Jamie Moyer was born November 18, 1962 and is a pitcher for the Phillies.

Taking a night off from the bars tonight.  With Music Fest weekend just finished and Cinco de Mayo tomorrow, I figured a day of rest would be an excellent idea.  Let’s catch up on the news I didn’t have time to post over Music Fest… going to have to go back several days in my Inbox to see what’s there…

The Metal Museum now has an online store.

I’ve been asked to mention Natalee’s Haircuts in the Falls Building… a reader of mine who goes to her describes her as a “hidden gem.”  She cuts men’s hair only, and charges only $14 which is less than the $25 average you find in most salons these days for a men’s haircut.  Cost is comparable to Supercuts but I’m told she does a better job and there’s less wait time (because she takes appointments, which Supercuts doesn’t).  If you work Downtown and need a haircut at lunch or after work, perhaps you should check her out.  Her shop fronts the alley that runs along the south side of the Falls Building.

The Memphis Business Journal ran an article on the new Bangkok Alley, which will open in the former Sawaddii space by the end of the month.  They intend to expand the bar area, to make it more of a lounge atmosphere.  That’s a great idea.  When it was Sawaddii, the bar never really seemed like anything but a place to sit while waiting on to-go food.  Hopefully the new place will be more of a place where you can linger and enjoy drinks after you get done with your food.

The South Main Association monthly meeting will be Tuesday, May 12 at Hollywood Disco at Vance and Mulberry.  Pierre Landaiche, general manager of the Cook Convention Center, will speak.  The club will provide hors d’ouevres, and there will be a cash bar for beer and wine.  Hmmm I wonder if there’s ever been an SMA meeting with beer served in quart bottles before.  Scheduling the meeting at the Disco increases the chance that I will attend by about 200%.

I don’t usually mention Midtown events, but I asked asked, so okay… The Eclectic Eye on Cooper will announce the first winner of their “What’s with those Glasses?” online contest on Thursday, May 7 at a “red carpet-worthy” event.  Refreshments will be served, and Kristi Bauer’s art exhibit “From My Patio to the Pacific Rim” will be on display.  You can still vote on their website for your pick for the person most in need of a glasses makeover.

’80s band The Venus Mission plays the Peabody rooftop Thursday.

If you enjoyed Three Six Mafia at Music Fest on Sunday, you might enjoy Wednesday nights at the Hard Rock Cafe, where Project Pat will be hosting a “live music experience like no other,” sharing the stage with DJ Crumbz from Q107.5 and some of Memphis’ best bands.  This Wednesday, Finding Jimmy Hoffa will be the band.  $5 to enter, 18 and up, doors open at 9.

Whew… okay, I think now I’m mostly caught up on stuff to blog.  I have a few pics from yesterday that I need to get out of the camera, but I’ll save that for later.  Early bedtime sounds good tonight.

Downtown Alive! May events

If you work Downtown or have reason to be Downtown at lunchtime, here are a list of free events you can attend during the month of May (click for a larger image):


This really makes me miss being Downtown at lunchtime.  All events are free and generally happen between 11:45 AM and 1 PM.  My personal picks:  All of historian Jimmy Ogle’s Tuesday tours, Memphis Roller Derby on the 6th, the Navy rock band on the 21st, the Hattiloo Theatre presentation on the 28th, and the Dead Resident’s Day in Court Square on the 29th.

Still thinking I’m going to start the day at the Silly Goose’s Bloody Mary bar… hopefully I’ll get to spend at least some time outside after that, although Music Fest is not in my plans.

Saturday recap: Updated burrito contestants, blackened catfish @ Orleans

Got out of the house about 2 PM… walked to the Saucer, thinking to myself, “I’ll have one beer, then head to Beale for some prime people watching.”  However, nature had other plans… by the end of the beer it was raining pretty hard, so there wasn’t much point going to Beale.  So I stayed at the Saucer through the running of the Kentucky Derby, hanging out with Lee and Bicycle Bobby and former waitress Adrienne, and knocking some of the most boring beers off my quest for my 3rd plate (Bud, Miller Lite, MGD – all bottles).  By the time the Derby had been run, I was ready for a venue change, so I headed next door to the Silly Goose.

A few more contestants have been added to the Goose’s celebrity burrito-eating contest Tuesday night.  Here’s the updated list:


The owners gave me permission to text the Nuh-Uh Girl and invite her to participate, but she wouldn’t do it… too bad, because I think it would be an easy victory for her.

It was still raining as I left the Goose, and I was getting hungry.  “You know, I go to the Voodoo Room in the downstairs of Orleans on Front all the time to see Hoop,” I thought.  “But I never actually go to Orleans to eat.”  So I decided it was time to correct that problem.  I walked over there and got the blackened catfish with red beans and rice.


Clint also brought me a sample of shrimp and grits to try, in an attempt to get me over grits-o-phobia I’ve had since childhood.  I must admit, it was pretty good.

They have some good people working there as well… Kenneth who used to work at EP’s is there, as is my friend Brooks who also works at Sauces, and Colin splits his time between Orleans and Voodoo Room.  You know, up until this point Orleans’ bar has never been on my radar as a happy hour destination, but now that I realize I know so many people there, it may have to be.  Besides, they have a lot of good $4 specials on their happy hour menu.

Bardog Tavern is moving their Cinco de Mayo air guitar contest from 6:30 PM to 8 PM on Tuesday the 5th, because Commercial Appeal TV wants to stop by and film it.  Contestants will rock out atop the bar with their best air guitar moves.  There will be specials on Cabo Wabo silver tequila, Mezcal, Corona beers, and margaritas.

Time to get some sleep and get ready to do it all over again in the morning.  The usual routine of Majestic/Saucer just doesn’t feel right for Music Fest weekend… I think I’ll kick the day off with the Bloody Mary bar at the Silly Goose, and play it by ear after that.  Off to bed… hope the people who attended Music Fest today heard enough good music to make up for getting soaked.

Another Cinco de Mayo celebration, this one on Tres de Mayo

The Red Rooster is having their Cinco de Mayo celebration tomorrow, Sunday, May 3, from 5 PM ’til.  There will be drink specials, sombreros, mustaches, and more.

Also, if you’ve never seen the totally awesome hair band cover band Aquanet, they’re playing the Rooster tonight.  Motley Crue, Ratt, Poison, Winger, and all your ’80s hair metal favorites.

Recap of last night

Didn’t go to Music Fest last night… people watching is more fun than the festival itself.  Started off at the Saucer, but the high point of the early evening was definitely standing on the Silly Goose patio with Air Traffic Mike.  Tracy was selling hot dogs on the patio.  Here’s a pic of Air Traffic Mike eating a hot dog:


Air Traffic Mike said the hot dogs Tracy was serving were really good, but I didn’t buy one because the weiners looked slightly off color.  Tracy’s buns looked fantastic though.

While there, I got a look at the celebrity lineup for the Goose’s Cinco de Mayo burrito-eating contest at 8:30 PM on Tuesday, May 5.  Here it is:


John Bragg, Michael Patrick, Paula Raiford and Hoop are among the names.  I think they should invite the Nuh-Uh Girl to enter… she’s a celebrity too (thanks to this blog) and can out-eat anyone on this list.

A little after 10 I headed south to the South Main Dirty Dozen party at the Happy Mexican Club.  Yes, club.  Did you know that, south of the restaurant entrance, there’s a nightclub?  A really nice nightclub, too, with a big dance floor and a good bar.  Great location for the party!  Hung out there for a couple of hours, then I said to my friend Nick, who’s new to Memphis, “You’ve seen Paula & Raiford’s Disco, now do you want to see the other one, Hollywood Disco?”  So we made the short walk to Vance.

We hung out there for a while, then decided we were hungry, and headed over to the Green Beetle to eat, taking a new friend with us.  Ate, then went back to the Disco – they’ve changed the rule, and allowed re-entry there – nice.  After another beer it was time to call it a night… walked outside, and it was pouring rain.  Home was 7 1/2 blocks away.  “This is going to suck,” I thought.  Then the Disco’s limo driver said, “hop in, I’ll give you a ride,” and I got home nice and dry.  I really like the Disco and the only reason I don’t go there more is the distance from home compared to the other one.  They are great people and I really hope Downtown is big enough for two discos.

Attn new friend:  You have my number.  You said you’d call today.  Call me.

Hmmm let’s see what my Facebook friends have been up to… “Amanda has a big hat and is ready for the Kentucky Derby party.”  Confirmation that Amanda is indeed a big dork.  I bet Ptolemy Kat is going to that party too – it sounds like the kind of thing she’d get excited about.  Just checked Kat’s blog for the first time in a couple of months, and the first post mentions the “U-Club.”  It figures.

And Rochelle changed her profile pic to one where she’s wearing a tube top… nice.  Although, I’ve never understood her obsession of taking pics of her feet, and other people’s feet.

The final tally for April – number of times I visited Downtown bars last month:

  • Flying Saucer – 40
  • Silly Goose – 16
  • Bardog Tavern – 10
  • Paula & Raiford’s Disco – 4
  • Voodoo Room @ Orleans – 4
  • Majestic Grille – 4
  • Red Rooster – 1
  • Kooky Canuck – 1
  • Flight – 1

59 and raining as I type this… yep it’s Music Fest weekend.  I’m about 50/50 whether I’ll go today.  The thing is, if I go, I can get in the Memphis Flyer tent and have free beer all day, and get a guest in too (have not yet selected a guest).  The downside is that I still have to pay for a ticket to get in the park, and get soaked by the rain, and tromp around in the mud, and deal with the idiots in the crowd.  Don’t know… if I don’t go to the fest itself I’ll hang out on Beale Street most of the day, with occasional trips to the Saucer.  Time to get Saturday started… outta here for now.