Tue update: Flood and Grizzlies watch party news, and a Mother’s Day sale

Lots of flood news to start off the lunchtime post today. On Twitter, the @MemFlood account posted this map, showing areas of Shelby County that will likely be/will possibly be under water by May 10 when the Mississippi crests. OH MY GOD. I didn’t realize how serious this is going to be. Large chunks of Memphis under water, especially around the Wolf River and Nonconnah Creek.

Another good link is this chart that shows the current Mississippi River stage, and the forecast for several days out.

If you saw the I-40 bridge last night and wondered why it was not lit up, that’s due to the flood as well. They removed the transformer until the water recedes.

So, the flood will move BBQ Fest to Tom Lee Park. Participants now have two options: 1) They can make themselves miserable complaining about a situation they can’t change; or 2) They can laugh it off and resolve to have a good time anyway. Air Traffic Mike says it well in this post. BBQ team members who think they have problems because the festival was moved need to open the link in the first paragraph above, and see REAL problems.

So, tonight the Grizzlies play Game 2 at Oklahoma City at 8:30, game on TNT. Besides of the trivia night/watch party at Ferraro’s which I posted yesterday, I’ve learned of four other watch parties Downtown:

The Flying Saucer is canceling their weekly Tuesday trivia night this week so that full attention can be paid to the game. They’ll have the Grizzlies on 7 TVs, including two big screens, with sound.

South of Beale is having a watch party as well, with $3 Grizz Shots.

Spindini will have a watch party with happy hour prices during the game, and Grizzlies memorabilia giveaways.

Of course, the Grizzlies will host their own free watch party as well. Doors to the FedExForum will open at 7:30, an hour before game time.

If I hear of more watch parties, I’ll try to do an update after work. Once I get home, I’m going to wander down to the river and snap some pics. Undecided where to watch tonight. I agree that full attention on the game is necessary – trivia takes a back seat – so will end up at Saucer, Max’s, or possibly a friend’s house.

In other news, Christine’s by Shelton Clothiers has announced a Mother’s Day sale. If you can’t figure out exactly what to get her, buy her a $50 gift card to Christine’s and receive a $15 gift card free. Limit two per customer, with gift cards not valid on sale items.

That’s all for now. Off to eat a quick burger, then I’ll spend the afternoon figuring out which of 72 parameters is crashing my SQL statement. Next week, the only SQL I’ll see will be INSERT INTO paul VALUES (beer, bbq).

BBQ Fest moved to Tiger Lane at the Fairgrounds

Due to the threat of a 48′ river crest that will flood Tom Lee Park, the Memphis in May board voted last night to move BBQ Fest. The new site will be Tiger Lane, the new tailgating area at the fairgrounds. The event will go on May 12-14 as scheduled.

More details to come… so far I know that load-in will be delayed until Sunday, May 8, and that MiM is trying to work with MATA to arrange a low-cost shuttle for team members and guests from Downtown. New site maps will be emailed to the teams tomorrow.

While I’m sad that the event won’t be Downtown, and it will be a little inconvenient for people who live or stay down here, we’ll make the best of it. Kudos to the MiM board for making what had to be one of the toughest decisions in their 30+ year existence.

I’ll post more details as I get them.

Quick pre-Pint Nite post: All about Belgium, trivia at Ferraro’s, “When the Levee Breaks” original song

A few quick items before I head to Pint Nite:

Kerry from the I Love Memphis Blog had an excellent post that is all about Belgium today. Check it out to learn about Memphis in May’s honored country.

Kevin Cerrito, host of Tuesday night trivia at Ferraro’s Pizzeria and Pub, wants everyone to know that there will be plenty of TVs for Grizzlies watching tomorrow night. Sound will be on between rounds, and he intends to have the event wrapped up by the fourth quarter. Trivia begins at 8, Grizzlies game at 8:30.

And finally, a video I saw today: The original “When the Levee Breaks” (1928) by Joe McCoy and Memphis Minnie, recorded 43 years before Led Zeppelin re-made it. Thanks to Roscoe from the Saucer for finding and posting to Facebook.

Special flood-related statement from those in charge here at Paul Ryburn’s Journal

Tube Top Month will happen as scheduled, and Brick is ready.

With the Mississippi River forecast having been revised today for a crest of 48 feet on May 10, a number of people have emailed me out of concern. They are worried that an event that has become a Memphis institution might be affected. We want to post and dispel that rumor before it gets out of hand.

Tube Top Month will occur as scheduled, beginning on Friday, May 27 at 5:00 PM. It will not be canceled due to river flooding. It will not be postponed. It will not be moved to the fairgrounds, or Shelby Farms, or the Agricenter, although if anyone wants to take a photo of themselves wearing a tube top in any of those locations and send it in, they are more than welcome to do so.

Tube Top Month is a celebration of the greatest women’s fashion statement ever. It used to be held from midnight June 1 through 11:59 PM June 30. However, in recent years it has been expanded to include the weekend of Memorial Day and the weekend of Independence Day. It will be back, it will be business as usual, and it will be better than ever.

We now return you to your regular blog. Thank you for reading this flood emergency statement.

Mon update: Osama bin Laden, flooding, Grizzlies and more

I woke up to the news this morning that Osama bin Laden is dead. I don’t know if it’s appropriate to celebrate anyone’s death, but I think it is appropriate to celebrate the sense of closure that thousands of victims’ families must be feeling today. Great job to the Navy SEAL team that flew in, assasinated bin Laden, and took custody of his body. Thanks to all members of the U.S. military for your hard work leading up to this moment.

Flooding continues to get more and more serious. Both parking lots on Mud Island are now under water. The river is now at 42″ with at least three more feet expected to rise. I hear that Memphis in May is now polling BBQ Fest team members to get an idea of what they’d prefer – to move the festival, or postpone it. Since I’m not one of the team captains, I won’t be in that conversation with the Ques Brothers, and that’s fine with me because I wouldn’t know what to tell them anyway. I expect we’ll hear a decision tonight or tomorrow.

For the latest flood images and news, search Twitter for the #memflood hashtag. It’s a community-sourced tag that is being used to report news on the flood, and is more comprehensive and current than what you’ll find on the local media outlets. Also, the flood maps at staysafeshelby.us have been updated to reflect predicted flooding today through May 5. IMPORTANT ALERT FOR MUD ISLAND RESIDENTS: (Edit: Earlier there was a report that the north entrance to the island at Second was closed. It is now reported to be open), and flooding is predicted for the foot of the A.W. Willis Street (Auction Street) bridge that is the southern entrance to the island. (Situation is not quite as bad as I saw on Twitter this morning. Sorry to alarm everyone, but this could get worse. Still worth it to take precautions.)

Watched the game at the Saucer yesterday. WOW… the Grizzlies are looking like a championship team, playing at as high a caliber as the Bulls, Lakers and Heat. I’m going to have to start keeping up with the Eastern Conference playoffs, because the Grizzlies will end up facing one of those teams in the NBA finals if we continue to play the way we did Friday and yesterday. I’ve had several friends attend playoff games, and after saying it was one of the best experiences of their lives, they’re now looking into season tickets for next year. Even the terrace seats, which start at $5 per game, have a very good view of the court.

So anyway, I had fun watching the Grizz yesterday, even having to deal with “The Interrupter” at the Saucer. Let me give an example:

Friend: Paul, what time is the Grizzlies game on Tuesday?

Me: (starts to open mouth)

Interrupter: “The Grizzlies game is at 8:30.”

The Interrupter is as talented at blurting his way into conversations he’s not a part of as Zach Randolph is scoring points in the paint. I’ll say it again, there needs to be a D-league for social skills.

Later, we watched the weather as a possible tornado was spotted and Tom Lee Park was cleared. We learned from the radar that there’s a community about 10 minutes west of here named “Patoka.” If BBQ Fest doesn’t happen, maybe I’ll spend next week vacationing in Patoka instead.

The usual Monday lineup for me tonight: Pint Nite at the Saucer (most draft pints $3 all day), followed by Texas Hold’em with Poker Jon and Brick at the Silly Goose at 10. If I hear a decision has been made about BBQ Fest, I’ll post.

Parts of Mud Island expected to flood today

Mayor Wharton just tweeted this map (PDF) showing expected flooding by zip code. Slide 13 is Downtown, and it looks like some of the streets on Mud Island facing the Wolf and Mississippi Rivers will flood today.

It also shows that the on and off ramps at I-40 and Riverside are expected to flood. Not sure how that’s possible, since the ramps aren’t level. In any case, though, if you have to travel to or from Arkansas today, you may want to take the 55 instead.

Near the intersection of Second and Mud Island Drive, I notice there’s a street called Minnie. Wonder if that was named for Memphis Minnie who wrote “When the Levee Breaks?” Minnie Street, by the way, will be flooded today too.

Sushi @ Blue Fin

Dinner last night:

Left: Memphis Seoul: Grilled beef tenderloin, scallions, cucumbers, carrots, diakon topped with hamachi and house made kimchee

Center: Blues Club: Blue crab, mayo, scallions & crunchies, topped with “old bay” seasoning

Right: The Weekend at Ernie’s Roll: Shrimp tempura, avocado, mayo, jalapeno topped with seared scallops

All three were delicious. I’ve always thought that kimchee doesn’t get the appreciation it deserves in America. Happy to see it atop a roll at Blue Fin.