I typed up a “Reading this week’s Memphis Flyer so you don’t have to” post last night, but about the time I finished it, Comcast slowed to a halt and I couldn’t post. Checked to see if I could jump on my neighbor “linksys”‘s network, but it wasn’t available either. It was about 11 PM. “No Internet, guess I’ll go to bed,” I thought. “Or, I could go have a beer.” So I went to the Saucer and then Hoop’s Bar and stayed out until about 2.
Anyway, the main thing I wanted to mention that there’s an article on page 9 about CouchSurfing.com. This is a site where you can register and let travelers know that you have a couch available for them to crash on, or that you’re traveling and are looking for couches. The cost of crashing on someone’s couch is $0. So, why would you offer total strangers a place to crash? Because it’s a great way to meet people, and help travelers see new cities from a local’s perspective. If you don’t want to offer your couch to travelers, you can sign up and select “no couch, but willing to meet for coffee or a drink.” There are measures in place to verify people’s identities. The system works surprisingly well and many friendships have been forged as a result.
This is very cool. I love to meet new people and show them around and let them see why I love Downtown Memphis. I’m definitely going to sign up as being willing to go out for coffee or a drink, and I’ll go “maybe” on the couch offer.
You can befriend people on CouchSurfing.com much as you can on MySpace and Facebook, and it helps your reputation because then you have people to vouch for you. This is important when you’re dealing with total strangers. I’ll sign up this weekend after I get the Comcast problem straightened out. If you’re on there, be sure to look for me and befriend me.
Other stuff in the Flyer (doing this from memory, don’t have one in front of me): An article about the Memphis Music & Heritage Festival, with an interview with Center for Southern Folklore director Judy Peiser; an ad reminding people that Big Foot Lodge will have 34 oz. super cold Coors Light for $2 all day Sunday; and an article about Circa chef John Bragg and his history in restaurants. When he was at La Montagne he made tofu fajitas. I’m sure my health guru AL is salivating at the thought of those.