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VOL. 132 | NO. 214 | Friday, October 27, 2017

Dries

Bill Dries

Last Word: Weekend Plans, Leaving Home and the Clown Show Turns a Corner

By Bill Dries

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Grizz win at the Forum 96 – 91 against the Mavericks Thursday, a night after losing to the Mavericks in Dallas. And off we go into a busy weekend starting with Friday’s University of Memphis football game at the Liberty Bowl against Tulane and into Saturday’s Race for the Cure through Downtown followed closely by day two of the River Arts Fest in South Main, which begins its three-day run Friday evening.

There is probably a point at which many if not all of us in our youth think we have to leave wherever we are and never come back, much less look back – especially if it’s where we grew up and struggled with the transition to being an adult. When that place has its own turmoil and long-standing problems that remain entrenched, the personal becomes an experience, even a ritual that may not be recognized as a moment of passage until much later. I think all of us grapple with it and the dilemma has its own distinct course in Memphis.

Kirk Whalum talked about his moment in that dilemma Wednesday at Clayborn Temple. The church is increasingly becoming the place where those who lived through the events of 1968 in Memphis and those who have only read about them but still been affected by them are coming to terms with what it means for us, as a city – as Memphians, whether we live here now or not -- to be 50 years past that.

It is easy to be reminded of those events in the church’s current state. Its recovery still shows plenty of relics of the past and there is lots of room for the ghosts of who we were. The recovery got an important boost this week with a national status that comes with technical assistance and the ability to invite the world to this very special place.

Ahead of Saturday’s Susan G. Komen Memphis-Mid South Race for the Cure Downtown, checking in on the Real Men Wear Pink fundraising campaign locally.

Also Saturday, the ex-wife of the D.C. sniper will be in town to keynote the domestic violence forum “Bridging Troubled Waters.” Mildred Muhammad talked with us in advance of the Saturday forum about her experience as the abused ex-wife of John Muhammad – two years in hiding after 12 years of marriage and “verbal, psychological, economic and spiritual” abuse. “I’m hoping they can understand that they don’t have to put themselves in harm’s way to help their family or their friends,” she told us of her message.

What was once the Kroger store on Exeter in Germantown looks ready to move ahead with some kind of development. A Trader Joe's had been scheduled to go in there – either in the old Kroger store itself or as an outparcel. As the new plans begin to travel through the government process however, no one is saying whether this is going to be work on a Trader Joe's or on some other commercial development.

When demolition began Wednesday on Lakeland’s factory outlet mall, Yehuda Netanel, the developer of the Lake District project that is to be built on the land couldn’t resist reminding Lakeland Mayor Wyatt Bunker that it wasn't too long ago that a frustrated Bunker referred to the project’s erratic path as a “clown show.” And Bunker owned up to the remark just before the bulldozers began doing their thing.

More from our Nashville weekly, The Ledger, on Democratic prospects in the 2018 elections statewide.

And AP’s Erik Schelzig recaps U.S. Senator Bob Corker’s week in Washington.

In our Friday Sports Section:

South of the state line, we look in on how Austin Nichols and Trahson Burrell are coming along with the D-League Hustle.

Don Wade’s Press Box column is about a new novel with a storyline against the backdrop of being a Cardinals baseball fan in this part of the country.

Dave Link on this weekend’s UT-Kentucky football matchup, which could be the last for Butch Jones at Rocky Top.

Bye week for the Titans in the NFL and Terry McCormick recaps where the season is for them.

The Mississippi Supreme Court overturned the death row murder conviction of a man for a 1993 triple murder in DeSoto County. The Clarion Ledger reports the court sent the case back for a new trial because of forensic evidence prosecutors said linked Sherwood Brown to the murder. It did not. The items were “not what the state purported them to be,” the court concluded.

The old Caterpillar plant in Oxford, Mississippi is being leased by SMW Manufacturing of Michigan, which says it will invest $15 million in the plant and hire several dozen Caterpillar workers.

There will be no state takeover of the Jackson, Mississippi public school system, Jackson Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba and Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant announced Thursday.

Mississippi’s divorce law is being challenged as unconstitutional because its critics say it does not have a true no-fault provision.

Jerry Lee Lewis on the passing of Fats Domino earlier this week:

“It was a very upsetting day to hear about my friend Fats. We spent many good times together from rockin’ on the road to spending time in each other’s homes for a good downhome country dinner. We’re both piano players from Louisiana. I love him and now I miss him.”

The renovation of the Memphis Cook Convention Center and what happens around it is the topic on “Behind The Headlines” with Memphis Convention and Visitors Bureau president Kevin Kane and Jennifer Oswalt, interim president of the Downtown Memphis Commission. The show airs Friday at 7 p.m. on WKNO TV.

The cover story by Patrick Lantrip in our weekly, The Memphis News, puts the local pursuit of Amazon's HQ2 project in a broader perspective with recent commercial real estate projects. The PDF of the new issue is up now on this website. The hard copies of the issue are in the racks Friday morning. And the online version of the cover story goes up here Friday afternoon.

Also in the issue is our Economic Overview for the third quarter. And here is the basic summary of what we have gathered together for your consideration with the PDF of our data.

For your Friday viewing pleasure, I and several of you came across this on the website avgeekery.com. It’s a 1960s film on the Naval Air Technical Training Center in Millington. No sound with the film, which is a shame. But the captioning makes references to “the latest appliations in transistors” and “far out stuff most people have never heard of.” Groovy. And there is a reference to “Park Field.” You get a good look at Memphis and Millington from above and a better look within the gates of the military base. I had a teacher who used to complain that the soot from the fire drills was a constant threat to the laundry she put on her clothes line. No Cold War threats apparent in the film and there is plenty of daylight in the dancing scenes – as there should be. But Connie and the two trainees are the only ones who ever dance. That’s the real story.

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RECORD TOTALS DAY WEEK YEAR
PROPERTY SALES 94 494 11,526
MORTGAGES 99 552 13,427
FORECLOSURE NOTICES 0 45 1,858
BUILDING PERMITS 135 926 24,165
BANKRUPTCIES 63 276 7,473
BUSINESS LICENSES 23 106 3,912
UTILITY CONNECTIONS 39 181 4,681
MARRIAGE LICENSES 10 74 2,544

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