<$south, memphis, gradschool, yankee, wanker$>

Monday, July 10, 2006

Revolutions Bike Shop

Revolutions Bike Co-op in Memphis is a great place to learn to build bikes and build a community. Serving the underserved in MEmphis with bikes and parts and advice, we are making the city a better, more rideable place. http://revolutionsmemphis.com/.

Saturday, February 18, 2006


Resent-From: all_faculty_staff_students@memphis.edu
From: mhdocktr@memphis.edu
Subject: University Closed: 2/18/2006
Date: February 18, 2006 11:31:01 AM CST
To: all_faculty_staff_students@narya.memphis.edu

All classes and events at all U of M campuses are closed Saturday, Feb.
18. The University Website and hotline will be updated at 6:00 a.m. on
Sunday, February 19, and again on Monday, February 20, announcing
whether the University will be open or closed.

All this after 1/2 inch of sleet and a little ice. This city is up to its elbows in absurdity.

Saturday, February 11, 2006

all alone on a snowy memphis night

Like a couple of idiots, Mary and I decided to walk to dinner last night -- in the snow. It was actually very nice - the snow was falling very gently and there was no one out and about. We got a table right away at Boscos and had a lovely evening. On the way home we rolled big balls of snow in several people's yards, and made a snow bunny on our own sidewalk. It was actually quite warm for a snowy night, but the neighbor still heckled us for being silly for being out in the snow.

Sunday, January 15, 2006


Salmonchild and a colleague discovered the fun of appearing on traffic cams in London and capturing the screens. I cannot imagine what kind of time this takes to figure out and execute, but it looks like fun.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

springtime in memphis

It was seventy degrees again today in Memphis. Mary's tulips are blooming and the grass is greening up again. I totally missed winter. Bah.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Copulating deaf couple unaware of own volume

[Sorry folks, I don't usually do this, but I kinda had to share this article. Happy Festivus. - JMG]

Monday night, a record number of noise complaints were received by Residential Security Officers in Roger Revelle College. Officers responding to the calls found the sexual activity of a deaf couple to be the source of the noises, which were described as "cacophonous" by witnesses.

The first officer on the scene, Frank Zipelli, reported, "I could hear those two all the way from the parking lot." According to Zipelli, "It sounded as if they were bludgeoning a cow. There would be a low moan, like a ‘moo,’ and then a ‘bang’ and a higher-pitched ‘moo.’ It was like ‘MOO…BANG…MOOO!’"

Upon further investigation, officers on the scene were able to locate the disturbance in the bedroom of Revelle sophomore Katherine Chavez. "All her suite-mates were awake," said Zipelli. “They all were crowded around her door, afraid to go in.”

Jamie Valencia was one of those at the scene. "We banged on the door for 15 minutes straight!" said Valencia. "The sounds wouldn’t stop—they kept getting louder until the floor was shaking. I had a midterm in the morning and needed to sleep, so I called the police."

"We thought she had broken a leg or something," added Julie Klein. "The moans and thumping sounded like she kept hitting the wall, but her boyfriend was there too. I thought he might be beating her, but I was afraid to intervene."

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Not likely

Today, for the second sunday in a row, I was approached on my front porch while reading. I actually like it when neighbors and other folks stop by, but this is getting kinda weird. Last week it was a homeless guy who mixed two popular pitches. He was the victim of racism (the old lady down the street called him a dirty n-----) and he recently lost his home in New Orleans. He really shouldn't try that second one when he is a regular in the neighborhood. Anyway, today's fellow tried to tell me about Jesus. He walked up with a Chick pamphlet and told me that it might be the most interesting thing I ever read. Not. Likely. I was really nice though and he left after a few minutes without incident.

God, what a boring post.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

memphis fixies

memphis fixies
Originally uploaded by j&mgorman.
All the fixed gear riders in memphis converge on downtown for laps around the block once a month.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Heather and Gavin with tidings of compasion

Originally uploaded by j&mgorman.
So Gavin was kind enough to send this emissary from a UNC fan. I'm sure snopes would disprove it, but it was nice none-the-less.

God what a great season.

As Raymond Felton dribbled toward half court with a three point
lead and ten seconds remaining, I should have been ecstatic. I
should have been proud. I should have been yelling and
fist-pumping and taunting all of the Illinois fans in the
room. But, there was none of that. And then I realized that
somewhere deep inside, buried below my ACC pride and my North
Carolina upbringing, was that intangible something that all
true sports fans have: the ability to recognize when the wrong
team has won.
The Tar Heels are better than the Illini. They are better
athletes and better basketball players. There is no question.
But, watching the orange players disappear in the crowd as the
clock hit zero, I couldn't help but feel a little dirty.
I needed the Tar Heels to win. For days I had said that the
only thing worse than an all Big-Ten final would be an Illinois
win. For weeks I had guaranteed my friends that Illinois
couldn't make it through six rounds of top competition. So,
when it was all over, I should have rejoiced. Instead, I
I recanted everything I said about Illinois this year. I don't
know why it took so long for me to see. Maybe because Illinois
orange makes me nauseous. Maybe because I will never root for
a non-ACC team. But when the last game of the season ended, I
finally got it. Illinois plays the kind of basketball that
keeps this tournament so much fun. Like 'em or not, there is
no denying that the Illini are as well coached and fundamental
as any team in the country, and more so than Carolina.
What Illinois did this year, regardless of the relative
weakness of their conference, has to be commended. They didn't
have the players that most of the top teams had. Their coach
had less experience at this level than almost every coach that
made the Elite Eight. Still, they were minutes from cutting
down the nets.
I have to concede that if the Big-Ten coaches had ACC talent,
the ACC would be in trouble. Not to overlook the job Coach K
and Roy Williams did this year. Coach K made it clear that he
could take a girls softball team and still make the
tournament. And for Roy, considering the pressure and the
personnel, the national title is impressive. Trying to have
success in a team sport with a guy like Rashad McCants is like
trying to walk around naked without anyone noticing. As George
W might say, it takes some serious "strategery." So, credit to
But, this is exactly why the Carolina win was hardly
gratifying. While Illinois runs a brilliant system that relies
on contributions from 7 intelligent and well-trained students
of the game, Carolina plays a two-man game (regardless of which
two touch the ball) with little defense, and only has success
due to the fact that most of its players have supernatural
bodies and ridiculous athleticism. As much as I like watching
them "run and dunk," and as much as I like to see the ACC
succeed, I would prefer an ACC team to win in Illinois fashion.
I want to respect the champs and feel like their win means
something more than a resume builder for NBA scouts to ogle
over. But, I don't. And so, while I love seeing the sour
orange faces in the Chicago papers, today my face is blue. Not
Carolina Blue, and not Duke Blue. Just blue, because even
though my team won, we all lost something last night.

turns out I'm good with the past

So I'm in a class that I'm not actually taking. Just sitting in to learn a bit more about Memphis history. Incidentally, the professor appears to have lived through most of it. So when the rest of the students (all earnest undergrads) were studying for the midterm in teh history building I was able to be the wise, I'm-not-taking-the-midterm grad student. My first time and it was trés cool. Anyway, they were mostly impressed that I was in there "to really learn it" (as they aren't). Well, one unfortunate young woman was having lots of trouble studying. It seems she isn't "very good with the past."

That sucks in a history class, y'all.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Easter is cancelled

Originally uploaded by j&mgorman.
If the apostle wasn't in such a hurry, he may not have run over teh poor easter bunny.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

survival of the fittest (and don't you just know it)

So in Philosophy of History the other day a few of us had to explain that:
1. Yes, evolution is the dominant paradigm (sorry, it was Kuhn-week),
2. Everyone whom is taken even remotely seriously in the Natural Sciences subscribes to it, and
3. That is because Jesus didn't design things.

Welcome to graduate school. Please keep your coats on - we're going to rock your world.

Thursday, February 24, 2005


Memphis is a funny town when it comes to tolerance. Can't tell you how many racial epithets I hear daily (don't beleive me, check out the rants and raves at memphis.craigslist.org). But our fine citizens show an uncanny resolve to help our brethren who, because of a certain neural degenreative disease, have limited mobility. Case in point - I've never seen so much kindness as I do when students going into the language building stop to help a fellow (who is mobility impaired) place a cigarette in his little hooka pipe, remove his chair-directing toob from his mouth, turn off his oxygen, and light up the cigarette. I have such hope in the compassion of man. God bless phillip morris and memphis. So long and Mahalo.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

after christmas deals

So because mary was on call xmas on the day after I picked her up at 8 and we went looking for breakfast. IHOP was open. Seriously, that is it. Bob's was closed (we understand bob, just a little disappointed) as was every other breakfast joint in midtown and east memphis. We would have ventured further except I hate the suburbs and people are still driving like morons on the slushy ice crap on the roads. Oh, I guess the CK's diners were open, but those are seriously suspect. I went in there to study one evening and it was all pimps and drunks. Anyway, turns out IHOP is nice in the south. I guess when your competition is W_FFL_ HOU_E then you are bound to look good.

Those were some mean sausage links. Holla.

Thursday, December 23, 2004

memphis snow, part deux

Several weeks ago there was a link from jalopnik about how to do that 180º tire-squealing turn that they do in the movies all of the time. Well tonight on our street covered with ice, I did it. Just for no reason and with no premeditation I turned slightly, pulled the handbrake and loved every second of it. Like the man said, "fookin brilliant." You know I will be doing this again.

memphis snow

memphis snow
Originally uploaded by j&mgorman.
Well its the first snow of the year in Memphis. Of course everyone is just crazy. Little reminder to the girl in the car stuck in front of our house - spinning your tires until they're bald is doing NO good. Props to the guy with chains. Because you need that shit with only 2" on the ground.

Tuesday, December 21, 2004

bah humbug

So tomorrow is the peak FedEx delivery day. Memphis is the FedEx hub. And every plane they own flew over my house last night between 12 and 4. Why can't everyone just ignore their relatives who moved away like they did in the old days. Right.

Monday, December 20, 2004

Special gate to hell

So polite conversation last week lead me to learn that Memphis maintains a violent crime rate 5 times the national average and is perenially near the top of most murders per capita. But hey, it's also the least dense city in the world. J was right; special gate to hell. Maybe that's where my bike is. Holla

Thursday, December 09, 2004

dead week

dead week

So I didn't post on dead week, but at least I'm doing it now. This guy
is old, jerry-curled and sporting a strong Jersey accent. What else
could you want in a bad elvis. This guy was just the tip of the iceberg
on beale street on dead week.

That and I'm trying out the flickr/blogger connection.


So, I actually read some of my early posts. Longing for winter eh, I
guess its not too bad. It's in the 60s today and it actually is winter.
I'm just dreading the first "snow". People drive like morons in the
rain, I can't wait for the asshats to see the snow. Anyway, this is my
first emailed post, so don't get too upset if works for shit.

school's a killa

grad school is killing this fella. Nevertheless, I really should keep up with this. My writing has turned to crap just when I need it to get better. So back to the blog. My goal is 3 posts a week. We'll giver a shot, huh?

So, on december 6 it was nearly 80 degrees F here. WTF mate? I went outside with a coat on and was nearlly knocked over by the heat. Figures. I guess that means the stores won't be sold out of hats and scarves and gloves and the like just yet. People here don't put that stuff on until it gets down into the 50s.

Not much of a first post back, but what's a fella to do?

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

josh is going to remove my privileges

Hi! I don't know what I am doing, but it is fun!

bundo for fundo

So my truck is acting up a little. Specifically, the intake to my catlytic converter has a crack in it. The pipe is holding on with just an inch or two of the three inch pipe still connected. So yesterday when Dewey Day (more about the neighbors later) came over to inspect my fence. I asked him if he knew of any mechanics in town who could help.

Now Dewey is a southern man down to his core. I'm only using his real name because, well, isn't it just cool as can be? Anyway, Mr. Day has retired from a career in auto-body work and I thought he might know some mechanics. Well, true to his profession he recommended I put bondo on it.

I didn't know exactly what he meant at first as bondo sounded more like funion than anything. As he said it more and more it started to sound like fundo and there - right there - is where I made the connection. Which brings me to an observation.

Everyone here likes to do things well enough to work, but not right. Tennessee has clean air regulations and as such requires inspections when an automobile is registered with the state. (And it's about time as Smokey mountain national park is one of teh most poluted places in America.) Anyway, they do emissions testing and, I'm told, take a good look at the underside of your vehicle to make sure everything is on the up and up.

Now Mr. Day knows this. I mention it to him again. He asks if the car sounds funny (it does, as cars with holes in their exhaust are wont to do), but is more concerned with appearance. He then proceeds to explain to me, in detail, how I could spend about the rest of my life working on this one hole with some bundo and some sand paper so that I could deceive the inspectors.

I'm pretty sure that it never crossed his mind to send me to a mechanic.

Now, I know I'm new, but this seems like a cultural thing to me. Everyone operates like that down here. The house we bought is full of that kind of little stuff from the painting to the electrical to the plumbing (oh, was that fun). The city recycling program is like that; it takes the bare essentials - newspaper, glass, and tin cans - but nothing (and I mean nothing) else. The parks, the roads, the lawns, the cars, the resturaunts, ad infinitum.

This more than anything, will be the death of me here.

Monday, May 31, 2004

oh, yeah

So Beth said I should blog 'bout moving down here. Down here is Memphis. I'm from Illinois. They call it the mid-south, but it sure seems south to me. I went to see Steve Earle the other day (http://steveearle.com/) and he was booed [boo'd?] when he said that the civil war was fought over slavery and not state's rights. Really. Who booes [boo's] a pretty well informed entertainer whom you have just slapped $30 down to see over what most historians on the subject would agree is a pretty accurate statement (slave driven economy and all)? Southerners, that's who. Don't tell me this is the mid-south, its not. Its the damn south. Deal with it.

Anyway. Moved down here. It is kinda strange. Not always like you would expect. I'm not going to be trying to define the new south or the new, new south or the whatever. I'm just giving myself an outlet to write about what makes down here different in my view and how it effects my perspective.

I guess I'm getting a late start on it, but now is better than tomorrw, right?

Sunday, May 30, 2004

longing for winter

Not really. Friday we were meeting with the vet. He said (among other things) winters here are terrible because on one day it may be 78 degrees and on the next it can be 20 (he actually gave dates and examples, so this rates only just above "hmmm" on the hyperbolie scale). Sounds better than Illinois where it is 20 and 20 and 20 and 21 for the month of January.