Tue update: stiRQd featured on Mashable, Hart to run for Congress

Wanted to link to a couple of interesting articles before going out for the night:

First of all, local startup stiQRd was featured in an article on Mashable today. stiQRd is an app that produces verifiable checkins, done using QR codes, that can be used in loyalty programs for businesses. Getting a Mashable mention is a huge deal. It’s one of the most widely read social media blogs in the world. Congratulations to stiQRd, and to Memphis Daily News writer Andy Meek for getting a Mashable byline.

You know, I was thinking… what if I printed tube tops with QR codes on them, and when you scan the QR code, it takes you to my blog? That’d be pretty cool. Wonder if enough would sell to make it an idea worth pursuing.

The second big news iteam of the day is that school board member Tomeka Hart is planning a run for Congress. She’s a Democrat, so she’d be facing Rep. Steve Cohen in the 2012 primary. I was not a fan of Cohen’s prior opponents, Nikki Tinker and Willie Herenton. However, I’ve served on the board of MPACT with Tomeka, and she is one sharp lady. She’s also African-American, and while race shouldn’t matter in selecting a Congressperson, let’s face it, this is Memphis and it will. She’s going to be a formidable challenger to Cohen. I can’t think of a reason not to vote for Steve, who has done an outstanding job, but I would be perfectly happy being represented by Tomeka.

That’s the news for now. Gonna hit the last hour of happy hour at Bardog, then wander over to the Silly Goose for their 8 PM trivia.

Madison has been closed far too long because of crumbling building

Yesterday the Commercial Appeal had an article entitled Portion of Madison Avenue Downtown lies forsaken. Since March 26 when a building collapsed, Madison has been closed between Main and Second, impeding traffic and shutting down the trolley route. I agree with the article: It has taken far too long for this to be taken care of. CCC president Paul Morris cited a property tax loophole that encourages owners of blighted buildings to keep them as worthless as possible. That needs to be changed. I hope the owner of the building faces some kind of fine for keeping a major thoroughfare blocked for over two months. He probably won’t though.

Three trivia nights Downtown tonight: Silly Goose (8:00), Ferraro’s (8:00), and Flying Saucer (7:00). I’m going to give the Goose another try after having a good time there last week, and because it’s probably the best of the three for tube top sightings. Charles keeps it on schedule and gets done by 9:30, so it’s possible to play trivia and still get a full night’s sleep.

Enjoy the classic Memorial Day drink: The duck fart

One of the best Memorial Day memories for me happened on Memorial Day Eve 2006, at Sleep Out Louie’s. Sleep Out’s was our Sunday brunch spot at the time, but brunch tended to last a lot longer there… sometimes we were still there at 9 or 10 PM. That was the case for the Sunday of the long weekend. We were having whipped cream fights and trying a new drink Emma the bartender had heard about, the duck fart.

According to iDrink.com, here’s how you make a duck fart:
1 oz. Coffee Liqueur
1 oz. Irish Cream
1 oz. Rye/Whiskey

Those ingredients may not sound like they’d go together, but it comes out tasting like a glass of chocolate milk. Very, very alcoholic chocolate milk.

Why not enjoy a duck fart this fine Memorial Day, and raise your glass in a toast to the men and women who have served in this country’s military? Inside tip: Coffee drinkers tell me that a duck fart makes an excellent addition to your coffee on a weekend morning.

Unlike Friday and Saturday, I don’t have a lot of photos to recap the day. Yesterday was kind of a FAIL all the way around. I should’ve eaten at the Majestic but didn’t. Plans for a pool party fell apart. I went home about 7 to take a one-hour nap, and woke up to find it had become a 6-hour nap. Then again, it wasn’t a horrible day by any means. Played pool with friends, and lost a best-2-of-3 series when my friend Dennis made an amazing bank shot in the side. Mary Pat modeled her 1970s lime green tube top. Tom Shelton brought me a Pink Pig baseball cap.

As for today, not much going on… the Redbirds have a home game at 1:05 if you feel like watching some baseball. As far as I know the regular Monday night poker game with Poker Jon and Brick is still on. And, of course, it’s Pint Nite at the Flying Saucer, with most drafts only $3. Don’t let the word “Nite” fool you: Pint Nite starts at 11 AM and lasts all day. Got an hour until the Saucer opens, so I think I’ll pop open a PBR left over from the pool party that wasn’t, and get this holiday started right.

Tube Top of the Day

The nice thing about being the creator of Tube Top Month is that sometimes my friends text me tube top photos. Such was the case yesterday. I was playing pool with my friends at the Saucer. Down the street, my friends Joe and Aubrey were having a drink outside B.B. King’s, and Joe texted me this photo:

A one word reply was all I needed to say. “Blogworthy.”

The celebration continues

The celebration of life Downtown continued Saturday. Here are a few pics. I started the afternoon at the Saucer, where a double plate party was happening.

Bicycle Bobby unveils his 9th plate
Gary has the most plates of anyone at the Memphis Saucer. He's been through the Ring of Honor 15 times. That's 3000 beers! Gary, by the way, is about to be a Downtowner, so he'll finish his 16th plate even more quickly.
Dennis and Bob discuss Hawaiian shirt fashion. Dennis came up with the idea to include Memorial Day weekend in Tube Top Month.
Mary Pat modeling a tube top
Next stop was Barton Flats rooftop to watch the fireworks. They don't have a pool on the rooftop, so we brought our own.
Our view of Tom Lee Park from Barton Flats
Our next stop was Rehab Disco for night 2 of Joe's birthday party. One of our friends was very happy for the chance to hang out at Rehab, so she didn't have to go to crappyoke night in South Main. "I HATE karaoke," she told me.
All he needs is a couple of horns and Chad would look like Satan incarnate in this pic.

I wished I hadn’t been so drunk by the time I got to Rehab, because I only lasted an hour there. I seriously don’t know why I don’t spend more time in that place on the weekends. It’s a fun little club. If anyone ever wants to go hit me up, I’m game.

I wonder if bars and clubs suffer from a lack of revenue Saturday and Sunday nights of Memorial Day weekend, because people start drinking early in the day and are too tired to stay out late? Certainly happened in my case.

By the way: I’m noticing a disturbing trend on Facebook. Ladies are laying out by the pool, and posting a photo of their feet facing the pool. We don’t care about your stupid feet!!! We want a full-on shot of you in a bikini, front view, back view and side view. Please try to do better with this!

And now it’s Sunday. Time to go to church. Just kidding! Another day, another rooftop, another 12-pack of PBR.

Sat update: White Trash Wednesdays at Escape Alley, 99 cent beer at Kooky, new bacon donut burger

Escape Alley Sundry has announced a new weekly Wednesday event: White Trash Wednesday. Bringing the best of white trash music and beer from 5 to 9 Wednesday evenings, the bar posted on Facebook: “Leave all your inhibitions to the wind, tease your hair, spray on a whole can of hairspray, put on daddy’s favorite Merl Haggard shirt and leather jacket and come get down. And ladies, don’t forget your blue eye shadow & bubble gum.” And don’t forget to stop by Wal-Mart and buy a tube top to wear! Escape Alley Sundry is located near the intersection of Monroe and Marshall, by General Washburn’s Escape Alley.

Kooky Canuck will do 99 cent Bud Light draft all day tomorrow, Sunday, May 29. Kooky usually does this promotion the day before Monday holidays, so this is a celebration of Memorial Day, but I like to think it’s a celebration of Tube Top Month too. Wear your tube tops to Kooky tomorrow and drink some super cold Bud Light for cheap!

Over in my hometown of Little Rock this weekend, it’s Riverfest, with music on multiple stages, food, cold beer, and lots of ladies in tube tops. The newest food over there is the Donut Burger. It’s two Krispy Kreme donuts, coated in chocolate, with bacon in between. Absolutely brilliant. Someone needs to bring the Donut Burger to Memphis.

By the way, for my Little Rock readers, check out my friends the Dirty White Boys, who take the stage at 3:30 this afternoon.

Stuff going on today: Redbirds play Omaha at AutoZone Park, 6:05; International Blacksmith Day at the Metal Museum; fire dancers at the Rumba Room, 7:30 ($10); and of course Sunset Symphony.

It’s 10:43 as I type this, which means the bar opens in 17 minutes. Time for me to hit Publish and get down there!

Doctor Toboggans unveils new volunteer infiltration program

Doctor Harold Toboggans handing out flyers at South Main Trolley Night

Last night at South Main Trolley Night, I had the pleasure of running into Doctor Harold Toboggans. Doctor Toboggans, for those of you not familiar with his work, is a genius who counsels people to overcome the urge to volunteer, to do good for others and the community. His website Mind over Memphis is a great resource to find opportunities not to volunteer.

I am one of Doctor Toboggans’ success stories. Years ago I was involved with a nonprofit called Mpact Memphis. I served on a committee to promote the city. I coordinated a dinner for Friends for Life. I organized a phonathon. Then, one day, I couldn’t take it anymore. I called Doctor Toboggans. “Please help me,” I begged him. “I’m tired of being a do-gooder. I just want to go to bars and get drunk every night.” After intense counseling, I achieved my goal and became the man I am today.

So last night, I was chatting with him at Trolley Night, and he tipped me off about a brand-new initiative: A volunteer infiltration program. “We can’t stop these do-gooders from volunteering,” he said, “So, we’re going to join them. We’ll volunteer too and infiltrate their ranks from within.”

“That’s brilliant,” I told him. “So we’ll be kind of like double agents.”

“Or triple,” Doctor Toboggans replied.

I remember seeing an example of this new program earlier this month on Facebook. There was a Clean Up Memphis day, and Doctor Toboggans was horrified that all these do-gooders were a threat to Memphis’ precious litter. So he encouraged people to show up for Clean Up Memphis to keep the do-gooders in line.

You can read more about the volunteer infiltration program here.

By the way, as far as I know Doctor Toboggans does not have a problem with Tube Top Month, even though it could be considered a program for the beautification of Memphis. So, go ahead and wear those tube tops, and if you feel the urge to volunteer please go to his website and get the help you need.

A celebration of life Downtown

This month has truly been a celebration of life Downtown, and last night was no exception. South Main Trolley Night and a friend’s birthday party. Here are some photos.

The most beautiful photo I’ve ever taken, and surprisingly it’s not of a tube top.
Dynaflow playing outside the Purple Door
The reason my head hurts this morning
Amy, in a tube top dress, celebrating the first day of Tube Top Month
Been hitting the Fireball, have we?
Otto and Katie Mac
Birthday boy and Nuh-Uh Girl
I stumbled home down Second. As I did, I realized it was after midnight, and Cockadoos was open. I stopped in for a snack of hashbrowns topped with chili, cheese, onions and jalapenos.

Credit to Bad Shane for a few of the photos above. Based on the pics I didn’t post here, I have to believe that Bad Shane has a talent for taking embarrassing photos of people that rivals my own.

A very happy birthday to Joe, and many thanks for the PBR and the Fireball. A most generous host for sure. Well, you know, the party was very well guest-listed too, if you know what I mean.

Now it’s time to do it all over again. I haven’t nailed down definite plans, but there’s a lot to choose from: Friends having their plate parties at the Saucer, Sunset Symphony, rooftops, an invitation I scored to Fielder Square’s pool, day 2 of Joe’s birthday party at Rehab Disco… Time to jump in the shower, get dressed, and see where the day takes me.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

No, it’s not Christmas. It’s better than Christmas. Tube Top Month has arrived!

Six years ago, I decided to devote an entire month of my blog, the month of June, to tube tops. Tube tops, in my opinion (and many others agree), are the single greatest fashion item in the history of the world. For the entire month, every blog post mentioned tube tops or contained a tube top photo, no matter how irrelevant tube tops were to the content of the post.

The first Tube Top Month was a success and I’ve repeated it every year since. There have been tube top rooftop parties and tube top nights at clubs. In 2010, my friends Dennis and Mary Pat made an outstanding suggestion: Why not expand Tube Top Month to include Memorial Day weekend and Independence Day weekend? So I did. Therefore, Tube Top Month begins at 5 PM on May 27 this year.

Ladies, I’ll have the camera with me all month long. If you want to be on the blog, just put on a tube top and find me. Let’s make this the best Tube Top Month ever!

Tube Top Month kickoff party happens NOW, at South Main Trolley Night. Put on a tube top and get down there!

Fri update: Peabody on Price is Right, Burly’s Groupon, welcome LeBonheur employees, beer fest gets new sponsor, CCC may get new name, trolley night tonight

The Peabody was a prize on The Price is Right this morning. You can view the video here. This is the second time they’ve been featured as a prize.

Burly’s Burgers at 662 Madison is this weekend’s Groupon. $6 for $13 worth of food. Get it here.

Congrats to LeBonheur Health and Well-being on their move into 50 Peabody Place. Their move was overshadowed by the larger Pinnacle Airlines announcement. Downtowners, let’s give the 135 LeBonheur health outreach workers the welcome they deserve!

An awesome beer festival just keeps on getting better: Central BBQ has been announced as a sponsor of the October 15 Cooper-Young Beerfest. I’ll say it again, this is the best beer festival I’ve been to, and well worth a cab ride from Downtown.

The Center City Commission is considering renaming itself. They wonder if “Downtown Memphis” should be in the name, and are considering options like Downtown Memphis Alliance, Downtown Memphis Commission, Downtown Memphis Authority, Downtown Memphis Development Agency and Downtown Memphis Resource Center. I ran into CCC president Paul Morris last night at the Majestic, and he told me he hopes Downtown Memphis Commission wins, because then when people ask what he does, he’ll be able to tell them, “I Run DMC. And it’s tricky.”

South Main Trolley Night is tonight! Carnival entertainment and Whitney and Brittney selling Ghost River beer! Gary and Ella competing in a cook-off! Tube Top Month begins at 5 PM, so put on a tube top and come on down. I’ll be out with the camera, so if you want your pic on the blog for Tube Top Month, come find me!