Monday update

Mighty Lights, the organization that lights up Big River Crossing and the Hernando de Soto bridges, announced that last night and tonight, the bridges will light up in yellow and blue in support of democracy in Ukraine. Good call by the Mighty Lights organization.

The Memphis Tigers got it done yesterday with an 81-57 road win against Wichita State. The Tigers travel to South Florida for a must-win game Thursday. Then they come back home for Senior Day vs. Houston on Sunday for a sure-would-be-nice-to-win game.

It looks like Putin’s war in Ukraine is not going well. Some things I learned from CNBC this morning:

  • Russia has not managed to capture any major Ukrainian cities. Ukrainians have destroyed entire convoys of Russian equipment. Russian fighters’ morale is said to be low.
  • The Russian stock market is closed today. When Russian citizens are able to access the banks, they may find that their savings are worth less than half what they were last week.
  • It’s possible Russian oligarchs will have yachts, jets, and condos seized in cities like Miami this week; with their lifestyle and their ability to accumulate wealth upended, they could turn on Putin.

Across America, bars are dropping Russian vodka brands and instead purchasing Ukrainian vodka brands like Vektor and Kozak. I don’t know how possible it is to get Ukrainian brands in Memphis bars, but you could always support local brand Old Dominick instead of Russian brands.

Not gonna name the restaurant since I consider the people there friends, but damn, some of y’all getting REAL uppity with your prices at crawfish boils. 25 bucks for one pound? You can get 2 pounds for a few dollars less than that at other Downtown Memphis crawfish boils.

The Grizzlies host San Antonio tonight at 7. It’s HBCU Night at the Grizzlies. Local broadcast on Bally Sports Southeast. Be one of the first 100 to get vaccinated next door at the Rock & Soul Museum 5-7 PM and score two free tickets.

Someone has been stealing urinal cakes from the urinal in the Blind Bear’s men’s room. The person who would be my number-one suspect is on a Las Vegas trip right now, so I suppose he has plausible deniability. Unless… all that twerking on social media was just a ruse so he could get those urinal cakes.

Follow the Kyiv Independent on Twitter for English-language news from Ukraine’s capital city.

FedEx has suspended services into Russia.

Breaking news: First Horizon, headquartered at Madison and B.B. King Blvd., was sold this morning to Toronto-Dominion Bank in a $13.4 billion transaction.

STIX Express, the Asian restaurant on Second, has announced its combo meal for the month of March. For $20 you get

  • A ginger salad
  • An order of Bluff City Nachos – crispy wonton chips topped with spicy crab, avocados, jalapenos, and sweet soy
  • A South Main Roll – salmon and cream cheese, flash-fried and topped with sweet soy and spicy aioli

Bridge inspections will close lanes on the I-40 bridge beginning today and lasting for a few weeks.

Daaamn… Switzerland is going to forego its traditional Swiss neutrality and put the same sanctions on Russia as the EU countries. The world really is coming together to back Putin into a corner.

There’s a New Moon Manifestation Sound Bath at the Broom Closet tonight. $20 “energy exchange” to participate.

Wale performs at the Cannon Center Wednesday night.

That’s it for this post. I’ll be keeping up with CNN live updates on Ukraine all day. Back tomorrow with more.

Sunday update: It’s time to light the river bridges in support of Ukraine

Bridges around the world are being lit in support of democracy in Ukraine. Mighty Lights, it’s time to get on board.

Here’s a link to James Aycock’s COVID Week-in-Review. James feels a sense of hope while also recognizing that the death count is still way too high.

Little Bettie, the pizza kitchen inside Wiseacre Downtown, has added a new pizza, the Calabrian Caballero: Calabrian aioli, calabrese, nduja, cheese, and 3 pepper salsa. This is a spicy pizza and no substitutions are allowed. $18

Sugar Grits has a new Tropical Mimosa served with a cold can of Tropical Red Bull. You can make it a bucket – includes champagne setup, orange juice, and 4 cans of Tropical Red Bull.

From TheNextWeb: 10 metaverse jobs that will exist by 2030 and the career path to get to them

Ja Morant tied his career-best with 46 points as the Grizzlies defeated Chicago 116-110. The Grizzlies are now third in the West, 2 games back of Golden State for second, 3.5 games ahead of Utah in fourth.

Central BBQ Downtown seeks a part-time banquet manager.

The Memphis Tigers are back on national TV today. They host Wichita State in a 1:30 game at FedExForum, to be broadcast on ESPN, which is a must-win for Memphis. New University of Memphis M Club Hall of Fame inductees will be introduced at halftime.

Today is National Kahlua Day.

Dancing with the Stars Live returns to the Orpheum Tuesday.

The BBB warned about scam charities supposedly seeking donations for relief in Ukraine.

The latest news out of Ukraine is that Ukrainian and Russian leaders will meet on Ukraine’s border with Belarus. Belarus is guaranteeing the safe travels of Ukrainian leaders.

That’s it for today. Back tomorrow with more.

Saturday update

Ukraine news this morning:

  • There’s street fighting in the capital, Kyiv, but Russians have not yet taken the city
  • The U.S. offered an evacuation plan to Ukrainian president Zelenskyy, but he said he was staying put
  • Ukraine shot down 2 Russian planes

More from ABC News

Those of you who frequented Puck Food Hall may remember a restaurant named Kinfolk, opened by chef Cole Jeanes. It served gourmet biscuits. The food hall may be gone, but Edible Memphis reports that Kinfolk is back as a pop-up restaurant inside Comeback Coffee at 358 S. Main on the weekends. They’ll serve 8 AM until they run out on Saturdays and 10 AM until they run out on Sundays. Their menu has classics like chicken, egg, and cheese biscuits and sausage biscuits with strawberry jam, but it also has innovations like S’mores biscuits with Nutella chocolate gravy and marshmallows.

Cordelia’s Market announced that it carries Don Pancho foods. They have chicken enchiladas with red sauce and creamy green chile chicken enchiladas meal kits available in their grab & go, and they also carry Don Pancho cilantro lime creme.

Important PBR news: I’ve been told by people who attended the grand opening of Civil Axe Throwing on South Main that they have PBR on draft. They have about 10-15 beers on tap and it’s self-serve. You put money on a card and then use the card at the pouring stations.

This video came up in conversation yesterday and I thought I’d share it. George Takei almost got to finally be captain of a ship… but he was outranked.

March 10 is rumored to be the opening date for South Point Grocery on Webster Ave. in South Main.

UZ brings The Decade Tour 2022 with DMVU to Carolina Watershed on Saturday, April 23. UZ has collaborated with stars like Ice Cube, T-Pain, and 2. Chainz.

I finally gave it and joined Snapchat yesterday. I really didn’t want to be part of another social network but I was missing out on videos of an inebriated friend twerking in Las Vegas. My username is paul_ryburn if you want to add me.

The CDC did indeed give people a break from wearing masks yesterday. They also said those in low- to medium-risk areas could stop social distancing and can gather in indoor spaces. The CDC has an updated evaluation tool that looks not only at the number of new COVID cases per day per 100K, but also at COVID hospital admissions per 100K and percent of hospital beds occupied by COVID patients. Based on those metrics, Shelby County’s risk is measured as “low.”

The Grizzlies travel to Chicago for a 7 PM game against the Bulls tonight.

Tonight is Open That Bottle Night.

From WREG: Apps and programming are making it easier for thieves to steal cars

The Blind Bear’s Mardi Gras Masquerade Ball is tonight beginning at 8.

Almost Elton John & The RocketMen play the Hard Rock Cafe tonight at 8.

Chloe Arnold’s Syncopated Ladies play the Orpheum tonight at 7:30.

I’ve been doing a lot of reading on the Russia-Ukraine situation this week. People are asking, “What did Ukraine do to offend Putin so much that he felt the need to invade?” From what I’ve read, there are two possible reasons.

One is that Putin can’t stand the thought of a successful democracy operating in a former Soviet state right on Russia’s border. He’s terrified Russians will look at Ukraine and think, “If a democracy is working so well next door, perhaps we should oust Putin and install a democracy here too.” If that’s the reasoning, Putin is attacking Ukraine out of insecurity.

The other possible motivation is delusions Putin has of grandeur. He sees himself as one of the greatest Russian leaders, up there with Tsar Ivan IV (the Terrible), Tsar Peter the Great, Tsar Alexander I (who fought Napoleon), and Lenin. Putin wants to restore the Russian Empire as it existed in the mid-1800s. At that time, the empire included Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Belarus, Ukraine, and most of Poland including Warsaw. With a puppet government in Belarus since the 1990s, Putin is ready to take his second step toward rebuilding the empire by installing a puppet in Ukraine.

That’s it for now. Back tomorrow.

Friday update

President Biden announced several financial sanctions on Russia yesterday as punishment for that country’s invasion of Ukraine. He also said the U.S. government has composed a list of Russian oligarchs who will be targeted directly with such sanctions. Here’s a name to get familiar with if you haven’t heard it before: Simeon Mogilevich. Described as “the most dangerous mobster in the world,” he is believed to hold a vast criminal empire, the boss of all bosses in the Russian Mafia.

A gray Infiniti G35 was stolen from the Riverset Apartments on Mud Island overnight. It’s funny how much that particular complex’s name turns up in crime reports. This Google StreetView image illustrates the problem: The apartment community is ungated. It’s every bit as accessible to criminals as the drive-thru at Taco Bell.

Crosstown Brewing Co. will host a Mardi Gras party at its taproom on Tuesday, March 1, and they’ve come up with a new innovation: Virtual King Cake beer. Scan the QR code on the can to find out if your piece of liquid, canned “king cake” contains the baby. If it does, you win a Crosstown Brewing Co. prize pack. The brewery opens at 2, the party starts at 4, and DJ Tree will spin from 5 to 8.

Keep former Memphis Tiger D.J. Stephens in your prayers. He was the guy who was only 6’5″ but played center because he could jump to the moon. He’s currently employed by BC Prometey in Ukraine.

Muscle Shoals band Outlaw Apostles have been tearing it up in the clubs on Broadway in Nashville recently. Tonight they come to Beale Street as part of the Tin Roof’s Nashville Hits the Roof series.

Elmwood Cemetery has announced a Memphis Music Tour on Friday, May 6. Come out and learn about the musicians buried there. Cost is $20.

The Memphis Tigers got a critical win, 78-64, over Temple last night. Joe Lunardi has Memphis as the Last Team In in his latest Bracketology update. Lunardi has Memphis playing Loyola Chicago for an 11 seed in the First Four.

The Grizzlies took a road loss to the Minnesota T-wolves last night, 119-114. The Grizz remain 3rd in the West, 2.5 games behind 2nd-place Golden State and 3.5 games ahead of 4th-place Utah.

Ramen joint Good Fortune Co. got another media mention this week, this time in the Daily Memphian’s New Eats column.

A 17-year-old has been indicted for the shooting death of a man on Beale Street between Front and Main in April 2021. He will be tried as an adult.

Major League Baseball’s 2022 season will be shortened if no deal is reached between owners and players by the end of the day Monday.

Today is National Clam Chowder Day. The Majestic Grille hasn’t posted today’s lunch specials yet, but that’s normally a Friday special.

The NAACP will hand out gift cards at 588 Vance today to families affected by the Family Dollar warehouse rodent infestation.

President Biden has nominated Ketanji Brown Jackson for the Supreme Court. If confirmed, she would be the first former public defender to sit on the court.

Magician Jason Bishop performs at the Halloran Centre tonight. Tickets are $37.50.

The Band Camino plays the Orpheum tonight. Tickets are $35-45.

That’s it for this post. Back tomorrow with more news.

Thursday update

Downtown Memphis experienced thundersleet about 2:30 Wednesday afternoon

Russian president Vladimir “I.B.” Putin appeared on TV Thursday morning and said that an invasion of Ukraine had begun. Minutes later, explosions were heard in the Ukrainian capital Kyiv as well as other cities including major seaport Odessa.

Ukraine’s response on Twitter:

U.S. sanctions on Russia are expected today. However, U.S. troops are not expected to be sent into Ukraine. Putin has promised “consequences as you have never before experienced” to any country that interferes with the invasion. Russia claimed that within hours, it wiped out Ukraine’s entire air defenses.

If the war goes beyond the borders of Ukraine into a neighboring country that is a member of NATO, the U.S. will be obligated by treaty to come to that country’s defense.

President Biden will address the nation about the situation in Ukraine at 11 this morning.

Here’s a Foreign Policy article explaining how Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus share a history dating back to the Middle Ages.

The Grizzlies are back on the court tonight, on a road trip to play the Minnesota Timberwolves tonight at 7. Local coverage will be on Bally Sports Southeast.

The Memphis Tigers are at home tonight, hosting Temple at FedExForum at 6. The game will be nationally televised on ESPN2. It’s Coaching for Literacy Night and fans are asked to donate. $10 provides two books for local children.

The CA has photos of last Saturday’s crawfish boil at Max’s Sports Bar. There won’t be a boil this Saturday because the weather is expected to be cold.

Civil Axe Throwing on South Main has its grand opening party tonight. Book a throwing session and you’ll be entered into a raffle for a pair of Grizzlies tickets. DJ Mylon Webb will provide the tunes and there will be food and drink specials.

Steak, Whiskey, and Poker Night returns to the Blind Bear tonight. I got to try a sample of tonight’s sirloin steak special, and it is even tastier than the one they had last week. Get a steak, a buttered baked potato, and a salad for $19.99. There will be local Old Dominick whiskey specials. Try your hand at Texas Hold’em poker at 7:30. It’s free to play and you could win some Bear Bucks. Poker has been going well since its return, stretching to 3 tables last week.

Yesterday the Bear’s manager speculated why the previous Thursday entertainment, weekly drag shows, didn’t work out. “They ran all the regulars off.” By jove, I think he’s got it!!!!!

You can custom order Marshmallow Peeps this spring. You can choose the color, dips, and toppings, and the Peeps will be delivered to your door.

You’ve probably heard of Taco Bell’s subscription program where you get 1 free taco a day for a monthly fee… but did you know Insomnia Cookies has a subscription program too? When you pay $9.99 a month to be a CookieMagic member, you get one free cookie a day. You also get free local delivery on your cookie orders, 20% off nationwide shipping, and exclusive deals on cookies every week.

Memphis magazine spotlights The Genre as one of the city’s best new restaurants. The restaurant sits directly across Poplar from 201, which the owner says is an advantage because diners feel safe with all the police around. The 201 Sauce is the most popular of their 15 chicken tender sauces. The restaurant is also known for its catfish, including catfish and grits for brunch.

Memphis magazine also profiled Good Fortune Co. on South Main as one of Memphis’ best new restaurants. The Asian restaurant, known for its noodles and dumplings, opened last year in the former South of Beale space.

AutoZone Park, home of the Memphis Redbirds and Memphis 901 FC, will host job fairs at the following dates and times:

  • Today 5-7 PM
  • Saturday 11 AM-1 PM
  • Tuesday, March 1, 5-7 PM
  • Thursday, March 3, 5-7 PM

The park will be looking to hire for the following positions:

  • Guest services representative
  • Promotional team member
  • Grounds crew member
  • Team attendant (bat boy/bat girl)
  • Team store associate
  • Camera operator

New hires must be at least 18 and must pass a background check and drug screening.

The Flying Fish posted on their national Facebook account that they have a deal today. Buy a pound of their hot boiled shrimp and they’ll match it with another pound, free.

Today is World Bartender Day. It’s also National Chili Day and National Tortilla Chip Day.

Cat’s Ballroom at 45 N. B.B. King holds the first of six Waltz Out of Winter classes tonight.

There’s a free Reiki share tonight at the Broom Closet.

That’s the news for today. Back tomorrow with more.

Wednesday update

The Orpheum announced its 2022-2023 Broadway season yesterday.

If you’re a current season ticket holder, it’s time to renew. Want to become a season ticket holder? March 29 is your day for first choice of seats.

Lucky Seven Brass Band will play a Crunk Brunch at Wiseacre Downtown this Sunday, February 27. Little Bettie, the pizza kitchen inside Wiseacre, will be serving up a breakfast pizza. Show your Memphis Tigers game ticket for 10% off your beer order. If you don’t plan to attend the game in person, you can stay and watch it on Wiseacre’s big screens.

Seen on ESPN yesterday: The New Orleans Pelicans will be able to offer Zion Williamson a 5-year, $181 million contract extension during the offseason. That’s noteworthy because Zion Williamson and Ja Morant are in the same draft class – so the Grizzlies should be able to offer Ja the same amount. $36 mil a year? Sounds all right.

The Pelicans are gonna be in a tough situation. Zion is overweight and injury-prone. He has never lived up to his potential. There are signs he doesn’t want to be in New Orleans. If they sign him to a max deal, it could be an even worse contract than the one Chandler Parsons had with Memphis. But if they don’t re-sign him, another team could nab a diamond in the rough.

On the other hand, the Grizzlies’ contract negotiation in the offseason should go something like this:

“Max OK with you, Ja?”


The Calvary Waffle Shop returns March 3. The waffle shop is a pop-up lunch cafe held at Calvary Episcopal Church during Lent. It’s done in conjunction with the church’s Lenten Preaching Series, and favorites like fish pudding, corned beef and cabbage, and Boston cream pie will be on the menu. Lunch will be served 11:00-1:30 Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays, and they’ll serve dinner 5:15-6:15 Wednesdays. The waffle shop will return to in-person dining this year, now that the health department’s stupid COVID restrictions are long gone.

Potato milk is a thing now. Yuck. I’m not a Vladimir Putin fan but I have to admit, Russians make better beverages out of potatoes than Americans do.

Action News 5 has a copy of the 22-page FDA report on the inspection of Family Dollar’s West Memphis warehouse. Among the findings:

  • Rodent droppings too numerous to count on the shipping dock where food was waiting to be picked up
  • Employee breakroom closed October 2021 due to odor
  • Rat carcasses
  • Gnawings of spilled containers of mixed nuts and spilled product
  • Rodent droppings and a mouse carcass (so I guess I was wrong when I speculated no mice) on a pallet of Hungry Jack cheesy scalloped potatoes
  • Rodent gnawings of pouches of Knorr Chicken Flavor Rice & Pasta Blend
  • Urine stains found next to another Knorr product with spillage

… and that’s just the first 4 pages of the 22-page report. Click the link above if you want to read the whole thing. Oh my, the rats got into the Vagisil too!

Blues City Kayaks will host a Sunset/Full Worm Moonrise walk across Big River Crossing on St. Patrick’s Day. Free to participate.

The Mississippi Blues Child, Mr. Sipp, plays B.B. King’s tonight at 7:00. $10 cover charge at the door.

Crawfish will be back at the Flying Fish beginning this Friday. The ones at Max’s Saturday boils are better, but if you can’t make it to those, the Fish is an option.

New at the Broom Closet: 1-inch miniature gemstone penises. They’re $6 and come in a variety of gemstones.

117 Prime is fire-sale-ing some of their wines to make room for new and exciting inventory. You might find one of your favorite wines at a discount if you stop in.

Morning Brew has a Ukraine explainer so you can understand the conflict between that nation and Russia. Keep track of Russian military movements in real time with this map.

That’s it for today. Back tomorrow with more news.

Day of the Deuces update

Tennessee State Rep. G.A. Hardaway, Vickie Terry of the NAACP’s Memphis branch, Shelby County Commissioner Reginald Milton, and others held a press conference yesterday morning about a finding by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration released Friday. The FDA said that over 1000 live and dead rodents and birds had been found in a Family Dollar warehouse in West Memphis. The warehouse supplies 404 stores in six states, including Tennessee.

The story received worldwide coverage. The UK’s Daily Mail has a story on the warehouse with a video of a warehouse employee feeding a rat a Pringle with his bare hands. “Here ya go, friend, you want some chips? You want some chips? Look at him, he wants that m*****f*****.” The video also showed a rat climbing up the side of steel shelving, a litter of baby rats, and two rats fighting. Family Dollar is urging people to destroy products bought in the six states the warehouse serves since January 1, 2021 – nearly 14 months ago.

The officials held the press conference to note that many of the Family Dollars in Memphis, served by the warehouse, are in food deserts. When the chain shut its Memphis stores on Saturday, residents were left with no place else they could shop for food. They may have been using contaminated products for as long as a year or more. One woman brought her dog to the press conference to illustrate that pets have been possibly eating contaminated food, too. The officials believe that corporate greed is responsible for the warehouse conditions. They noted that past discussions with Family Dollar about cleanliness and blight have not produced results.

Big Blue Bug Solutions says that a rat produces 35 to 50 droppings per day. Assuming we take the midpoint of that range, 42.5 droppings, and that there have been 1000 live rats in the Family Dollar warehouse every day since January 1, 2021, that would mean rats produced 17,765,000 droppings in the warehouse between that date and today. If we further assume that a rat dropping weighs about 1 gram, that’s more than 39,165 pounds of feces.

One question that may come up – the news reports have mostly stated that the warehouse has been infested with rodents. That may lead the reader to ask, were there mice in the warehouse too? According to this Terminix report, probably not. “Rats will kill and eat mice,” the report states. It’s known as muricide. So an infested facility likely has a rat problem, or a mouse problem, but not both.

Maybe Family Dollar could hold a benefit concert, raising funds to provide compensation for those who consumed possibly contaminated products. Here’s my suggestion for the concert headliner.

I don’t normally promote Nashville events on this blog, but there is a concert coming up there Saturday, July 2 that sounds fantastic. Morris Day, Zapp, Cameo, SOS Band, The Bar-Kays, Midnight Star, Lakeside, and the original Mary Jane Girls. Event info and tickets

This is Insomniac Week at Insomnia Cookies. They have the following deals going on:

  • Buy 12 classic cookies, get 6 free in the app (no code needed, just add the deal to the cart to redeem)
  • Free nationwide shipping for Loyalty club members with code TWOSDAY
  • 2 free classic cookies with any purchase in-store today, 2/22, when you show them today’s Insomnia Cookies social media post

Silly Goose posted that they’re going to start doing a Buy 1, Get 1 deal on their wood-fired pizzas 4 to 8 PM Fridays.

There was a report of shots fired near Monroe and Lauderdale about 4:45 yesterday afternoon.

Michigan men’s basketball head coach Juwan Howard has been suspended for the remainder of the regular season (5 games) and fined $40,000 for his actions at the conclusion of Sunday’s game against Wisconsin. Wisconsin coach Greg Gard called a timeout near the end of the game, which Wisconsin won 77-63. Howard thought the timeout was unnecessary given the size of Wisconsin’s lead. He jawed at Gard, grabbing him by the shirt, in the handshake line, and seconds later Howard threw a hand at the face of Wisconsin assistant Joe Krabbenhoft. You can watch the video here (YouTube won’t let me embed it because of “age-appropriate content”).

By popular demand, Tattooed Chef foods have been added to the freezer section at Cordelia’s Market. Their plant-based, healthy offerings include a Cauliflower Mac & Cheese Bowl, a Buddha Bowl, and a Pesto Harvest Bowl.

It’s that time of year – Girl Scout Cookie time. has a beer and Girl Scout Cookie pairing guide you may find useful. If you don’t know where to find a Girl Scout to order cookies, DGX has knockoff versions for $2 a box. I’m eating Fudge Mints (knockoffs of Thin Mints) right now and they’re pretty tasty.

The Blind Bear has posted the special dinner menu they will offer 5-9 PM this Saturday, the night of their Mardi Gras masquerade party. The dinner is $45/individual or $90 couple and comes with a bottle of bubbly. Call the restaurant to make reservations if interested – tables tend to fill up quickly.

First course
Fried oysters on a bed of greens with Creole mustard remoulade
Red beans & rice with andouille sausage

Second course
Crawfish etouffee
Shrimp & grits
Grouper Ponchartrain

Third course
Kraken Bananas Foster bread pudding

Bananas Foster? Wonder if any members of the Squeal Street BBQ team will make reservations. That dish is their specialty.

If you’re a Grizzlies fan and a Daily Memphian subscriber, be sure not to miss Chris Herrington’s Grizzlies mailbag in this morning’s edition. It alone is worth the monthly subscription price.

Smart City asks, is Downtown Memphis in trouble or on an upswing?

Putin ordered Russian troops to cross the border into the Donetsk and Luhansk provinces of Ukraine. These provinces had been controlled by rebels hostile to the Ukrainian government headquartered in Kyiv. Today’s POLITICO Playbook has more on the latest moves.

Congratulations to King Jerry Lawler’s on Beale, recipient of a recent 100 on its health inspection.

Congratulations to the city of Memphis on landing another major convention. The Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority will hold its national conference at the Renasant Convention Center March 1-6. About 6000 sorority members are expected to attend.

Memphis is under a tornado watch until 11 AM.

The great thing about the Day of the Deuces is that you don’t even have to leave your own bathroom to celebrate. Back tomorrow with more news.

Monday update

SMU handed the Memphis Tigers a devastating road loss yesterday, 73-57. The Tigers were competitive until a little of the way into the second half, when it was tied 41-41 – then the bottom absolutely fell out for Memphis. They looked like the “ugly Memphis” team (TV announcer’s description) that lost to Georgia.

If there’s a bit of good news, the DM reports that Joe Lunardi still has Memphis in the field of 68 in his latest Bracketology projection. Memphis is on the Last Four In line. Let’s take a look at the remainder of the season:

  • Thursday, February 24 vs. Temple (15-9, 8-5), 6 PM, ESPN2
  • Sunday, February 27 vs. Wichita State (13-11, 4-8), 1:30 PM, ESPN2
  • Thursday, March 3 at South Florida (7-19, 2-12), 8 PM, ESPNU
  • Sunday, March 6 vs. 14 Houston (22-4, 11-2), 11 AM, ESPN

I turned off the NBA All-Star Game at halftime last night. It wasn’t a game, it was a performance. Players just stood around as the other team dunked and shot uncontested threes. It made me realize how much as a Grizzlies fan I’ve been conditioned to appreciate great defense. For those of you who missed Ja’s dunks, here they are:

Team LeBron won 163-160. The Golden State Warriors’ Steph Curry was the MVP with 50 points, 48 of which were threes.

Action News 5 has a look at the All-Star watch party that happened in WynnBET Sports Bar inside FedExForum.

There’s a massage therapist position open at the Gould’s at Big Cypress Lodge, the hotel inside Bass Pro at the Pyramid.

ABC 24 interviewed some South Main business owners on where restaurants stand after COVID. The owners stressed that Congress must replenish the Restaurant Relief Fund (RRF).

What’s going on in Ukraine right now?

I hope you don’t need to go to a bank or the post office today, because it’s Presidents’ Day.

Toilet paper maker Charmin is said to have a big announcement ready to drop tomorrow, 2/22/22, Day of the Deuces. They’ll share the news on their Instagram account.

The forecast for today is warm and windy with a chance of scattered showers, mainly afternoon and evening, high 66, low 62. It’s gonna be a wet week and tomorrow night it will turn cold again.

The Trumpster is expected to launch a new social network, Truth Social, this week. You’ve heard the saying, the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy, nor Roman, nor an empire? I have a feeling there will be a similar saying about Truth Social.

I stayed home, wrote, and read yesterday during the hours when there was no basketball on. Currently reading Ogilvy on Advertising, a classic in its field. The book was published in the mid-1980s, before the dawn of Internet advertising, but the psychology taught in the book is timeless. I’m about halfway through and enjoying it so far.

Later today I’ll get out for a while. Back tomorrow with more news.

Sunday update: Important basketball games, suggested mascot change for UT

Two big games on national TV today… at 2, the Memphis Tigers take on SMU in Dallas. With a win, Memphis likely moves into a 10 seed in the projected NCAA bracket. A loss puts the Tigers back in First Four Out or Next Four Out territory. The game will be broadcast on ESPN.

The NBA All-Star Game, Team Durant featuring Ja Morant vs. Team LeBron, will be on TNT/TBS tonight at 7 PM.

The NCAA tournament committee revealed its top 16 yesterday, and the University of Tennessee was projected as a 3 seed, the 11th team overall. The Vols being the Vols, what did they do? They went right out and lost, taking a beating from Arkansas, 58-48. Bet the Vols won’t appear in next week’s rankings.

I’d like to suggest a team name for Tennessee: Instead of the Vols, why not start calling them the Voles? Voles are small, insignificant burrowing rodents with the look of a mouse and the habits of a mole. They’re sometimes called field mice in North America (the things Little Bunny Foo-Foo picks up and bops on the head). Given Tennessee’s frequent failures on the football field and the basketball court, I think the Voles would be an ideal animal to represent their school.

We should make a Most Overrated trophy just so Tenneessee fans can experience what it’s like to hold a trophy.

Grizzlies guard Desmond Bane was the first contestant in the NBA’s 2022 3-point contest last night. He was a little off his game, scoring only 18 points. Karl-Anthony Towns won the contest, becoming the first center ever to do so.

Flaws in the I-40 bridge that led to its closure last summer, and which could have caused the collapse of the bridge, were detectable as far back as 1982, the Daily Memphian reports.

Here’s a link to James Aycock’s COVID Week-in-Review. The numbers are generally trending well, but James notes the last 6 weeks have been the deadliest of the vaccine era in Shelby County. He points out that the city is said to be in a “homicide crisis,” but there have been more deaths due to COVID than homicides in the past 6 weeks.

Today is Hoodie Hoo Day in the Northern Hemisphere. To celebrate, go outside at noon and shout “Hoodie Hoo,” to drive winter away prematurely and to usher in spring.

More than 1000 dead rodents were found at a Family Dollar distribution center in West Memphis. I wonder if that center was responsible for shipping the Downtown Memphis Family Dollar its many, many rodents over the years before it closed?

Action News 5 reports that 404 Family Dollar stores supplied by the distribution center were closed Saturday. I wonder if people who planned to do their grocery shopping yesterday and found their local store closed thought to themselves, “Rats!”

There’s an Elmwood Cemetery tour of African-American history this afternoon at 2. Admission is $20 and masks are required when indoors.

Former DNA president Jerred Price brings his tribute show Almost Elton John and the Rocketmen to the Hard Rock Cafe this coming Saturday.

The Krackerjacks, “the party band of the Mid-South,” play the Peabody’s Grand Ballroom from 9 PM to 1 AM Saturday. The event is to celebrate the Mid-South Farm & Gin Show but all are welcome. There will be a cash bar.

My friends in the service industry look forward to the farm & gin show week every year. They tell me the farmers and ginners are not only fantastic tippers, but very nice people as well.

Old Dominick will host a Mardi Gras party 3-6 PM Saturday. When that’s done, why not keep your beads on and walk a few blocks north to the Blind Bear, which will have its Mardi Gras party that night beginning at 8.

Toot, toot, Tootsie, goodbye… toot, toot, Tootsie, don’t cry… today is the last day for Tootsie at the Orpheum.

It’s going to be a rainy week.

The Beijing Winter Olympics’ closing ceremony just concluded. It’s widely believed that Russian dictator Vladimir B. Putin had held off invading Ukraine until the Olympics were over to avoid offending host country China. President Biden told world leaders that U.S. intelligence suggests Russia will begin an invasion that will culminate in encircling Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital. British PM Boris Johnson believes Russia is planning “the biggest war in Europe since 1945.”

Queen, queen. COVID-19.

I’m going to trade a Sunday for a Monday – stay home and work today, and go out tomorrow. I want to write at least one professional article and I want to buy and read a copywriting book a fellow writer recommended. Back tomorrow with more news.

Saturday update

At 1:43 AM I heard what sounded like about 30 gunshots several blocks to the south of me – about the same loudness and direction as the shots fired at Main and Peabody Place on a Tuesday morning several weeks ago, so I’m guessing that same general area. The final shots sounded closer than the first ones, suggesting the shooter may have been traveling in a vehicle.

I did not see any reports of the shots to the police, nor have I seen a report on Nextdoor. Not sure if that means I heard something else and mistook it for gunshots, or if hearing gunshots has become so normalized down here that no one bothers to call them in anymore.

The Memphis Grizzlies’ Desmond Bane scored the game-winning free throw for Team Isiah to beat Team Worthy, 50-49, in an NBA Rising Stars semifinals game last night. However, Team Isiah lost to Team Barry in the finals, 25-20. The Clorox Clutch Challenge was held between the semifinals and the finals. In the Challenge, teams of two players competed to see who could make five iconic shots from NBA playoff history. Desmond Bane and partner Tyrese Halliburton won in 0:39.1.

One of the men accused in the shooting death of Memphis Chamber president Phil Trenary has been judged competent to stand trial. Trenary was shot in an apparent robbery attempt as he was walking home from a fundraiser at Loflin Yard. There were questions about whether defendant McKinney Wright understood the charges against him and his Miranda rights because he has an IQ of only 63. His attorney claims Wright was put up to the robbery by the other defendant, and the gun went off accidentally.

A zero-tolerance crackdown called Enough is Enough will occur on the city’s roads this weekend. If you drive, obey all traffic laws to make sure you don’t get ensnared in this multi-agency project. And stay off your phone when you’re driving!

The Memphis Tigers have made it to the Last Four In in Joe Lunardi’s Bracketology. Tomorrow’s game against SMU will determine whether Memphis falls completely on the right or the wrong side of the NCAA tournament bubble. SMU (18-6) is on the First Four Out line of the bubble, so they’ll be fighting for their lives too – and they will have home-court advantage.

The Pick Awards party, recognizing outstanding contributions in the Memphis hospitality industry, will happen Monday, March 7 from 4 to 6 PM at the Renasant Convention Center. There will be live music by the Nick Black Band, food, signature cocktails, a photo booth, and a scavenger hunt. Free parking in the convention center garage. Award winners and runners-up will be announced in

  • Restaurants
  • Attractions
  • Hotels
  • Hosts

The event is free to attend, but they’re asking that you RSVP so they can get a headcount.

The WWE has a pay-per-view premium live event on Peacock starting this morning at 11. Elimination Chamber will feature six-way chamber matches for the WWE World and Raw Women’s titles, while WWE Universal Champion Roman Reigns will defend against Goldberg. The broadcast is so early because it will be live from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The Saudi government pays WWE mega $$$$$ to do two shows a year in the country.

Fox 13 has a look at Chef Tam’s Underground Cafe.

ABC 24 looks at why it’s taking so long to get new license plates in Shelby County. I have a friend who was driving around with expired tags for 3 weeks because he was waiting on his new plate to arrive in the mail.

Oh God this is bad news for Downtown Memphis… the Trumpster will be here Tuesday to present a Unity Award to Dr. Alveda King for the We Love Christian Music Awards at Visible Music College on Madison. Why on EARTH would anyone think it is a good idea for that pussy-grabbing, narcissistic enemy of democracy to present a CHRISTIAN music award?

Today is National Chocolate Mint Day.

I just got back from my morning caffeine run to Downtown Walgreens. I just noticed that they have 10-packs of disposable hand warmers in the clearance rack, which you see right as you walk in (right now they have Valentine’s candy on the rack too). I’ve been told our homeless friends find them very useful. If you buy a pack and hand them out, I’m sure they will be appreciated.

Gabriel “Fluffy” Iglesias has a show at FedExForum tonight. Iglesias is the star and executive producer of Netflix original series Mr. Iglesias.

There’s a Pagan and Witches Meetup at the Broom Closet on South Main 2-4 today. Rev. Omma will give an overview of Norse mythology, teachings, and practice.

Broke Tall Folk play The Vault tonight at 7.

That’s it for now. Back tomorrow.