Saturday update

Supreme Court of the United States / Public domain

Rest in peace Justice Ginsburg. You were one of the great justices of modern times, a champion of gender and LGBTQ equality. You sacrificed a well-deserved retirement for our country. Thank you.

Perhaps the biggest local news story is not an official story… yet. To provide context, from the Memphis Flying Saucer:

No official announcements yet, but we’re getting close to having some good news for Memphis! In the mean time, if you want to get in on the Vote Glass that has predicted the last three presidential elections, pre-order online!

You remember the week before the COVID-19 task force announced Phase 1, which rolled out May 4? They made it pretty clear to everyone, although they never outright said it, that an announcement about reopening was going to be coming that week.

There was a veiled message to restaurants – which may have been actually said through back channels – to go ahead and hire back your staff, go ahead and place your food service and beverage supplier orders, so you’ll be able to hit the ground running when we officially give you permission to reopen.

There’s a lot of reason to suspect similar messages were sent this week, particularly to the owners of limited-service restaurants. I HAVE NOT CONFIRMED THIS but given posts like the one above from the Saucer, there’s good reason to speculate.

Now, that would all be good and fine…. we miss the bars… except for Mayor Strickland’s weekly update, or as I have taken to call it, Weekly Info from Jimbo from Mempho. If you scroll down to the second graph in Jimbo’s info, you see that for cases through September 7, the replication rate, “R” or “R-nought” as it is often called, has risen to 1.26. That means that right now, each new person who gets the coronavirus will infect on average 1.26 people. The “tripwires” in recent health directives state that R needs to be at or below 1 – the virus therefore being starved of new hosts – before limited-service restaurants are allowed to reopen.

So now the COVID-19 task force would seem to be in  a pickle. If they delay the reopening date, the limited-service restaurants’ inventory is left to rot. Employees who were promised jobs to return to have to go back on unemployment – again. This is an industry that has been asked to bear more than their fair share of the economic burden. No one wants to ask them for yet another sacrifice.

Yet we have the social media “public health experts” out there – people who post things like “I could even get behind a second lockdown, if we did it properly this time!” If additional reopenings are allowed this coming week, they are going to scream at the top of their lungs that the tripwires were never anything more than a joke.

And they’ll be right.

There is no correct answer. It’s figuring out the least bad of the choices. As someone who has friends who own limited-service restaurants, I want them to reopen, both so my friends won’t lose their life’s investments and so I can go hang out there. But if I feel that way, am I rooting for people to die?

I don’t know, man. I’m so sick of 2020.

Let’s move on to some food porn, what do you say?

Yesterday I had to run to the ATM in the First Horizon building at Madison and B.B. King. Before I left the apartment, I thought, I’m going to walk right past fam, the Asian and sushi restaurant on Madison, why don’t I put in an order? It’s so easy to do online.

It seems like they’ve revised their menu a little since the last time I ordered, and they added a few new rice bowls. One was a spicy beef curry bowl with filet, savory curry sauce, steamed rice, kale, corn, grilled onions, and carrot. I love spicy food, and I’ve been getting bored with chicken and/or shrimp in Asian dishes lately, so this was a welcome change.

Great chefs will tell you the presentation of a dish matters as much as the taste, and look at that beautiful photo! Even having been walked a block home, my bowl was a gorgeous assortment of beef, vegetables, and rice. As for the taste, it was just about perfect. The meat was cooked tender, the curry sauce was tangy and just slightly hot, the veggies were in the right proportions. This is my new go-to at the restaurant.

I was going to get a side of egg rolls, but Perjorie hopped on the laptop’s track pad as I ordered and pressed the button for edamame. Trolls prefer foods that are the same color as their hair.

As much food as I ordered, you’d think there have been leftovers. There weren’t. It was too good to save some for later.

Another death to report: TOM III, the tiger who was the mascot for the University of Memphis, died at age 12. With TOM III dies the university’s tradition of having a live tiger at games.

Bars/limited-service restaurants may have been closed for more than two months, but they’re eligible for grants up to $10,000 under Shelby County’s new Share The Tab program. Glad the program exists but in no way will that grant completely cover the expenses of bars for the amount of time they have been closed.

Mid-South Pride will hold a Regional Pride Event tomorrow, including a parade. Lineup is at 1 PM at Tiger Lane and the parade, 2:00-3:30, will travel

  • East Parkway to Young
  • Young to Union (WTF? They mean Young to Cooper to Union?)
  • Union to Danny Thomas
  • Danny Thomas to Beale

The parade will end at Front and Beale.

The curse of the avid reader: We pronounce words wrong because we always read them and never hear them on TV. I can so relate to this. I pronounced Kamala Harris’ name wrong for months because I had never heard it spoken properly.

Let’s see what we’ve got going on football-wise… looks like #17 Miami at #18 Louisville (6:30, ABC) is the game of the day. #14 UCF at Georgia Tech (2:30, ABC) should be good too and a chance to scout a key AAC opponent. Over on USA there’s South Florida at #7 Notre Dame at 1:30.

Rodell McCord plays Dinner & Tunes at Tin Roof tonight at 6.

Bardog is my plan for today. Back tomorrow with more news.