Saturday night drunk post

Hey, the computer at McGuinness is free! Let’s post. I’ve had 5 beers so I take no responsibility for typos.

Let me explain how I got here. I went to the Saucer tonight and the crowd SUCKED. So I walked out and went to the Tap Room. There I actually ordered a beer and drank it and thought about how much the crowd SUCKED. Then I went back to the Saucer and the crowd still SUCKED but I drank several beers anyway before I decided I just couldn’t take it anymore.

Then I came here. Ran into a guy I knew and he said, “So, did you go to the monster truck show at the FedExForum tonight?”

Okay, that explains the crowd.

I was so bored tonight that I actually called The Most Annoying Woman On The Planet and left a message on her voice mail. Earlier on I had thought about going to Raiford’s and figured I’d invite her to meet me up there. Then I realized, if she agreed to meet me at 11, she’d call back at 12:50 and say, “Sorry, I went over to a friend’s house to complain about my ex-boyfriend for a while. But I’m on my way”

There’s still a chance she could return my call. Hang on…

Okay, I put my phone on Silent mode.

Anyway, I’m at McGuinness and that’s not a bad thing at all. I came in here last week and there was a guy on the public-access computer playing Texas Hold’Em. I recognized him as the brother of one of the Romanians who worked downtown this summer. Which I guess would make him Romanian too. I never officially met him but I knew who he was because a bartender at Blues City pointed him out one night. So anyway, I was sitting at McGuinness’ bar and he was sitting next to me playing Texas Hold’Em. I felt like I should say hello, but I couldn’t really think of anything to say other than “Hey, your sister’s hot.” So I just sat and drank my beer and let him play.

Some of the guys in my building have a weekly poker game. Maybe I should invite him.

Coming up on midnight. God this town sucks tonight. I have a feeling I’ll end up drinking cans of PBR at the Black Diamond 4-5 hours from now and that’s never a good thing. By the way… several weeks ago I asked a trivia question asking the significance of the PEA VINE RAILROAD and no one got it. There’s a painting on the Diamond’s wall of a train station from that railroad company. I’m sure many of my readers have seen it, but am not surprised none of them remembered it.

All right, guess I’ll get off now and let the other drunks use the computer.

More Mexican: Rio Loco opening, Sgt. Jalapeno’s Tortilla Company review

– Today I was walking down Union, and I noticed a new sign in the window of Rio Loco, the Mexican restaurant that is taking over Buckley’s old building: “Grand Opening Fiesta Monday, January 23.” That’s this Monday! Hmmm… anyone want to go? I’d be up for it… e-mail paul at paulryburn dot com if you’d be interested.

– Well, that got me hungry for Mexican food, so I walked down to Adams to try the other new Mexican place, Sgt. Jalapeno’s Tortilla Company. So here’s my review…

They brought me a basket of homemade tortilla chips and homemade salsa. The tortilla chips were not the typical Tostitos-type chips you find in most restaurants – looks like they were made with flour rather than corn, fried golden brown, lightly salted. Very tasty. Salsa was very good too. I ordered a bowl of cheese dip, which was about halfway between yellow and white and I’d rate it as average.

They have a TV over the register, and they had basketball on. Good addition – I don’t remember that being there when I passed by a couple of weeks ago. Duke lost today. YEAH!!!!

For my entree I ordered the Houston Solution – two cheese enchiladas topped with red sauce and meat ($7.95). It came with rice on the side, a jalapeno pepper (a whole one, not sliced) and on the side was a bowl of pintos with bacon. All the food was homemade and very good.

To use the restroom, I had to get a key and walk down the hall to the Comfort Inn. I know they can’t do anything about that but it reminded me a bit of a gas station.

What else… they had La Prensa Latina by the door, for those of you who like to read Spanish-language news while you eat. Overall, food was quite good – far, far better than Pancho’s, and cheaper. I recommend paying them a visit.

I hear they do a booming lunch business from the nearby federal buildings. When I was in there I was their only table, but it was 3:00 on Saturday, so what would you expect? They had a party of 25 coming in later in the day so it sounds like they’re doing all right. Hope they stick around for a while.

– And that’s it for now… time to go enjoy another Saturday night in downtown Memphis. And tomorrow will be an exciting day of drinking mimosas and watching Team I Don’t Care About and Other Team I Don’t Care About battle it out for the conference championship on Sleep Out’s new LCD wide-screen TV. If anything interesting happens, I’ll write about it. And if nothing interesting happens, I’ll write about it too. See you later…

Deal of the week

Walgreens is selling 7×50 Vivitar binoculars, suggested retail price of $49.95, for $9.95. I bought a pair and tried them out tonight – they seem to work very well, much better than I’d expect for ten bucks. They have glare-resistant lenses and come with a very nice case.

Since a lot of my readers live or work in downtown high-rises or other buildings with a view, I figured I’d mention this. People in the Suntrust Building might especially want to take heed, since I hear there is sometimes “activity” worth watching in No. 10 Main’s rooftop hot tub.

Not sure if the downtown Walgreens carries these. I’ll look the next time I go in. I got mine at the Walgreens near my work, at Macon and Whitten Roads. This does NOT appear to be a weekly ad deal – looks like they will be $9.95 until they sell out, although I’m not 100% positive.

(Edited Saturday morning 11 AM to add:) Just checked the downtown Walgreens and did not see the binoculars. So I guess you’ll have to make a trip out east if you want a pair.

Very quick Thursday update

Congratulations to my friends Ira and Stephanie at I. Siegel Culinary Productions, who were featured in an article on page 34 of this week’s Memphis Flyer. It talks about their how they arrived in Memphis and decided to open a catering business. Menu for tomorrow (Friday, January 20) at their new lunch restaurant next to the Peanut Shoppe:

Pan Seared North Atlantic Salmon – Baby Shrimp and Lemon Butter
Rice Pilaf
Grilled Asparagus

Appetizer and Salad Bar, Homemade Soup, Dessert Bar
Lemonade, Ice Tea or Spring Water

I also noticed that there’s ANOTHER new Mexican restaurant downtown. It’s in the South of Forum district, right where Second Street veers left and St. Martin splits off. I drove past it about 6:00 tonight. It didn’t look open. Anyone know the details on this place?

All right – the Dempseys are playing the Saucer tonight so I’m getting outta here. I’ll try to return to a more regular posting schedule this weekend.


I don’t think I’ve posted this one before… this happened about five years ago, in 2001. I was at this club called the Dance Plex – it’s that fire station at Linden and Third, which had been converted into a club with ’70s, ’80s, and modern dance music rooms. I was upstairs, in the ’80s room (which had the best dance floor I’ve ever seen in a club – I miss that place), and I was sitting at a table talking to a girl, who for some reason thought I was fascinating.

So we were talking for a while, and she looked at me and smiled and said, “Tell me a story, Paul.”

Me: A story?

Her: Yeah. Tell me something funny, or amazing.

(The wheels in my mind started turning, and a mischievous grin flashed across my face)

Me: Well… did you ever watch The Andy Griffith Show when you were little?

Her: Yeah, all the time!

Me: Well, did you hear about the big scandal that was going on backstage?

Her: No… tell me!

Me: Okay. Remember Howard? He was the county clerk… he was on the show for the last couple of years, after they started doing them in color.

Her: Sure, I remember him. He wore a bow tie, didn’t he?

Me: Yeah, I think so. Well, he was involved in a major sex scandal, although they kept it a pretty good secret. He was doing it with one of the female cast members… I mean, they were going at it all the time in the dressing room between scenes!

Her: Who was it? There weren’t that many women on the show… there was Opie’s teacher… and Barney’s girlfriend… but Barney and Howard weren’t on the show at the same time…

(I must admit, I was impressed with her knowledge of Andy Griffith. I need to find her and invite her to come play on our trivia team!)

Me: Nope… it was none of those….

It was Aunt Bee!

Her: OH MY GOD! AUNT BEE???!!!

Me: Aunt Bee.

Her: Oh my God oh my God… Aunt Bee!

Me (imitating Aunt Bee’s voice): “Now, Opie, I want you to eat all your vegetables, and after dinner, I want you to wash your face and do your homework.”

Her: Aunt Bee… oh my God! She was like, somebody’s grandmother!

Me: Well, apparently the guy that played Howard preferred a more… experienced woman. And Aunt Bee… well, she just couldn’t get enough of it. They had a signal they’d give each other and… they’d disappear backstage.

Her: Howard was doing it with Aunt Bee? That’s sick! Ugh… that’s just wrong!

Me: Yeah, they managed to keep it a secret for a long time, even from the rest of the cast. But then one day… who was that guy who hung out with Howard and Andy and Goober all the time?

Her: Floyd, the barber?

Me: No, this was the guy who replaced Floyd. The Mr. Fix-It guy who was on the final season… Emmett!

Her: Oh yeah, I remember him!

Me: Well, one day the guy who played Emmett walked into Howard’s dressing room… and there were Howard and Aunt Bee on the couch, buck naked, going at it like bunnies!

Her: Oh my GOD!!!!!

Me: Yeah. The guy who played Emmett agreed not to tell anyone until after the woman who played Aunt Bee died, which was more than 20 years after the show went off the air. That’s why it has remained one of Hollywood’s best kept secrets.

Her: Oh my God oh my God!!! (She ran off to tell her friends, who were busy drinking and dancing and didn’t care.)

Of course, I totally made the whole thing up. I guess it’s a good thing she didn’t try to sell that to the National Enquirer or some other trashy gossip magazine. Just having a little fun at the expense of some dead actors and actresses!

Monday evening update: No pics yet, but restaurant info and followups to previous posts

– There’s another new Mexican restaurant downtown, Sgt. Jalapeno’s Tortilla Company. It’s in the space that used to be O Kypos, on Adams between Front and Main, in the Comfort Inn. I walked by tonight after work – didn’t eat there, but I checked out their menu and they have tacos, enchiladas, fajitas and all the usual stuff you expect to find at a Mexican place. Price was in the $6-10 range for entrees. The menus say they’re open until 9 Monday-Thursday and 10 Friday-Saturday, but the sign out front said 11 to 7. Good to have a real Mexican restaurant downtown. Hope it makes it – that location has not been lucky for past restaurants. I plan to go back and try the food sometime soon, maybe this week.

– Also, Quizno’s is open again on the Main Street Mall, across from Court Square. Good to have them back. They’re open until 8 on weekdays.

– There are also some restaurant closings. I was sad to find out that Cafe Samovar closed at the first of the year. I used to go there all the time on the weekends, back when a couple of my former students belly danced there. Their food was among the best in town. But there were simply too many other places to go downtown, and people forgot about Samovar. I hadn’t been there in over a year. I’m sad to see them go, and wish I had supported them more.

– And, Joey’s Pizza on Main near Jefferson is closed. They had some really good pizza. But the walk I took past Joey’s today made me understand why people didn’t want to go eat there. I walk past the place twice, and both times I was approached by bums asking for money. One got right in my way as I was trying to walk, and the other called me a “fucker” when I said no.

– I’ve received comments from blog readers about several past entries. First of all, Teresa who attended my plate party told me that I should look into potassium as a hangover remedy. She told me that alcohol depletes your body of potassium, which is partly responsible for that depressed, droopy feeling the next day.

– Carmel wrote to tell me that I was wrong in saying that the Romanians were copying American culture when they did their own version of Big Brother. The show began in Holland and is a hit around the globe. She spent part of 2001 in Ireland and just about everyone over there was addicted to the British version.

– Carmel and my mother also sent summaries of the back-story behind that stupid kid on Days of Our Lives. It sounded like the most confusing stuff ever and made me realize that one week of that garbage was enough. I’m removing it from my DVR’s programming list tonight.

– And regular reader Lacey responded to my question about whether it’s okay to take Advil after the expiration date on the bottle. She says it’s fine to take, won’t be harmful, just less effective. I guess since I walk to Walgreens almost every day on my lunch break, I could buy some NEW Advil.

– That reminds me… one day I was walking to Walgreens and I walked past an open field. Someone had thrown away a can of Milwaukee’s Best Light, and there was a straw sticking out of the can. You know you’re in Memphis when you see stuff like that.

– All right… I’m tired of typing so I’m going to hit the Publish button now. Plate party pics will be up soon.

Quick Sunday update

I have some sad news to report. The pigeon that worked the sidewalk in front of Empire Coffee, walking around and pecking for crumbs during the daylight hours, was found dead this morning. He will be missed. Anyone wishing to contribute to the Paul Ryburn Drinking Fund in the pigeon’s memory is encouraged to do so.

The Dempseys just re-did their website. Looks good! They’ll be playing downtown Huey’s tonight at 8:30.

Thanks everyone for a great time at my plate party last night. Sorry I pulled a disappearing act later on in the evening, but there was a good reason. I took about 30 pics (including some good ones of the waitresses) and I’ll have them up soon. In the meantime, here’s one of the pics, of regular blog reader Carmel in a tube top.

Good TV: soap operas, wrestling, and Romanians

– I received a tip from a friend that I should record the soap opera Days of Our Lives this week, that I’d really enjoy it. Now that struck me as odd, because Days of Our Lives is one of my most hated TV shows ever. I try to avoid it as much as possible, but sometimes I’ll go to Little Rock to visit my mother and she’ll have it on.

But curiosity got the best of me, so I set the DVR to record it this week. I came home, hit Play and was immediately reminded why I hate this show so much. Super-couple Bo and Hope were sitting around the Christmas tree with their stupid son Zack, who is about four years old. To tell the truth, Days of Our Lives wouldn’t be a half bad show if it wasn’t for Hope. I think she’s supposed to be the ideal woman that all the soccer moms who watch this show are supposed to dream of being – smart, classy, perfect marriage and family. I hate Hope. I want bad things to happen to her.

So they’re sitting around the damn Christmas tree, and Hope is hugging Zack, and Bo is hugging Zack and calling him “Tiny Man,” and Zack is saying “I love you mommy” and I’m sitting on the sofa thinking how cool it would be if Zack would die.

Sometimes TV can be pretty cool.

Just as I was contemplating taking the TV up to the roof and pitching it onto Main Street (and hopefully hitting a bum as a bonus), I realized something – the lovey-dovey Christmas moment wasn’t current – it was a flashback from a prior episode. In the current episode, Zack was having a sleep-over at a friend’s house, and had wandered outside to look for the cat.

Meanwhile, this chick was driving a truck down the road and it was New Year’s Eve and she wanted to party and she reached for her cell phone to call a friend and

* THUD! *

“AAAAAHHHHH! What was that?”

It was ZACK!!!!!!


And it gets even better. Guess who ended up finding Zack lying there in the street?

His mother, HOPE!!!!

Man, TV hasn’t been this good since Kelly Bundy was parading around in a miniskirt in 1988. I fast-forwarded through the other crappy storylines (actually, I did watch part of the one involving Sami; when Sami’s on the show it’s actually worth watching) and cued up the next day’s episode to see what would happen.

The chick driving the truck didn’t realize what she had done. She thought she had just hit a pothole. Messed up the truck pretty good though. Oh, by the way, the chick in the truck, guess who she was?

She was Zack’s SISTER!!!!

So the stupid brat is whining and whimpering and I’m thinking, “Damn. He’s going to make it” and I nearly deleted the rest of the episodes and went out to a bar. But I didn’t. The next episode showed them wheeling Zack into the hospital and Hope is bawling, “I can’t lose him! I can’t lose my baby!”

And then I fast-forwarded through a day and a half worth of crap involving them talking about what a great kid Zack is, until I got to an operating room scene. They were trying to do everything they could to save him. I was jumping up and down on the sofa yelling, “DIE Zack! DIE!!!!!!!!!!”

And the doctors said they had done everything they could, and it was too late. One of the docs was a family friend and she kept trying to push on. “No!” she cried. “There are more things we can do…” The other doctors had to restrain her. “We’re too late. It’s over.”

Zack was DEAD!!!!!!!!

WOOOOOOHOOOOOOO! First I get an iPod and now this. 2006 is turning out to be a pretty good year.

And in the last scene of yesterday’s episode, Hope and Bo got the news. “NOOOOOOOOO! WAAAAAAAHHHHHHH! WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!”

That was just some great TV. I guess I’ll tape next week too, since they’ll probably have the kid’s funeral. Next week? Who am I kidding? The way soap operas work, they probably won’t be done burying that kid by March.

– Then last night, I went out and went to a bar. Then I went to another bar. Then I went to another bar. The third bar was Big Foot Lodge and I sat down with my friend Angie, one of my ho’s from the pimp and ho party. The great thing about Big Foot is they have 6 TVs over the bar, so you have your choice of things to watch.

One of the TVs was tuned to the ESPN Classic channel, and a show called “Cheap Seats” was on. I’d never seen it before, but it appeared to be these two guys sitting on a couch making fun of bad sports TV. And for last night’s episode, they were watching an episode of Mid-South Wrestling from 1980. YES!!!

Man, that brought back memories. TV host Boyd Pierce’s suit looked like it could generate 220 volts of electricity. Gotta find out where Boyd Pierce shopped so I can get some new clothes to wear to Raiford’s.

The other announcer was “Cowboy” Bill Watts, a former wrestler who owned the Mid-South promotion. I heard Bill Watts was a real asshole to work for. There’s a story that one of the top guys, Jake “The Snake” Roberts, legitimately broke his arm in a match. According to the story, Watts told him to cut off the cast and get back in the ring the next week, or he’d lose his spot.

Then they had the first match. It was the Iron Sheik (which Mid-South Wrestling misspelled, “The Iron Shiek”) vs. Buddy Landell. Buddy Landell still had brown hair at this point. Later in his career he’d dye it blond and become “Nature Boy” Buddy Landell, a second-rate version of Ric Flair. The Iron Sheik would go on to win the WWF title a few years later, and then drop it to Hulk Hogan, marking the beginning of the Hulkamania era. The Sheik took the win. He had those pointed boots that he brought with him from his hometown of Teheran, Iran, and people claimed they were loaded. This was 1980, in the middle of the hostage crisis, so I’m sure the Sheik was quite the villain.

The next match featured The Great Kabuki (misspelled “The Great Kabuiki”), managed by “Playboy” Gary Hart. Kabuki was a Japanese wrestler who painted his face. He was known to spit green mist in the face of his opponents, blinding them. Sometimes he’d make some kind of adjustment to his throat and then spit red mist, which was even more lethal. Kabuki got an easy win over some jabroni.

Then they had an interview with Ted DiBiase, who at this point was a good guy or “babyface” in wrestling terms. A year later he would turn on the fans and become the most hated guy in Mid-South Wrestling, and a few years after that he became the “Million Dollar Man” in the WWF.

Great stuff… great memories from my childhood. I know they sell DVDs of 1980s Mid-South Wrestling somewhere on the Internet. I’m gonna have to look into ordering some.

– I haven’t watched much WWE wrestling in a while, but there’s a new guy who I think is going to be big… The Boogeyman. You know, the monster who hid under your bed or in your closet when you were a kid.

Here’s a link where you can see some video of the Boogeyman. He paints his face red and black and most of his teeth are missing. He’ll sing a few lines of some random song, then he’ll pick up a handful of worms (yes, real live worms) and eat them. Then, as a few stray worms fall out of his mouth, he goes, “HA HA HA! …The Boogeyman… is coming to getcha!”

Great stuff. I predict that this is going to be the WWE’s most successful gimmick since the Undertaker debuted 16 years ago.

– Really crappy reality TV has come to Romania. I was doing some web searches this morning, looking for some information a friend gave me on how to find Romanians in Memphis. Never found the site she told me about, but I did find this: Big Brother II, Romania. If Romania is going to copy American culture, couldn’t they find something better to copy than Big Brother? Looks like some of the girls on the show are pretty hot, though.

– Off to enjoy the rest of my weekend. I’ll have pictures from my plate party at the Saucer online sometime next week.

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When I’m at work, I tend to drink 20 oz. Mountain Dews one right after the other. I need lots of caffeine coarsing through my veins to be able to deal with 8 hours a day in a cubicle.

Recently, Mountain Dew has had a promotion where you collect 20 bottle caps from specially-marked bottles, and you can send them in for a free Memphis Grizzlies cap. It took me less than 2 weeks to save up 20.

Well, the promotion is still far from its end date, and I have now saved up another 20 bottle caps. The promotion has a limit of one per address, and what would I do with a second Grizzlies cap anyway? (I don’t plan on growing another head.)

So, I’m offering the second Grizzlies cap as a reward to one of you, my loyal readers. First person to e-mail me their mailing address (needed so they’ll know where to send the cap) gets it. E-mail me at paul at paulryburn dot com.

The fine print: They only ship the caps to U.S. addresses, so my international readers are out of luck, and I assume no responsibility if they run out of Grizzlies caps and don’t send you one (which happens all the time with these kinds of promotions).

First to reply gets it.