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VOL. 133 | NO. 152 | Thursday, August 2, 2018


Bill Dries

Last Word: Election Day, Inland Bails Early and Cannons Out

By Bill Dries

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The TV breaks are wall to wall with political ads. The campaign robo-calls have crowded out the hang-up clone calls to your landline phone. Your mailbox has no fewer than three mailers a day. And all of the parties set for Thursday night are “victory” parties at least until the polls close. Here comes election day.

Election day is Thursday in Shelby County across 176 precincts.

Our philosophy on this is pretty simple. This is about votes – numbers and that’s what we focus on election night once the polls are closed with live coverage of the returns @tdnpols, www.twitter.com/tdnpols, until they are complete. And if some of the races go into the night, have no fear. The story you wake up to on our website will have the complete results.

One of the most closely watched races once the polls close Thursday evening will be the Democratic primary race in which incumbent state Senator Reginald Tate faces a strong challenge from Katrina Robinson. It’s the first time Tate has had any kind of opposition in his 12 years in the Legislature. This is what politicos refer to as being “primaried” – challenged within your own party at what many office holders consider the most vulnerable time in an election cycle. Running against opposition is a new experience for Tate, as we wrote about earlier. And on election eve, a television ad Tate had made was blowing up on social media with not only supporters but critics sharing the musical video that features Tate dancing to the crunkness.


Our Nashville correspondent Sam Stockard takes one last look at the attack ads that dominated the Republican primary for Governor.

More changes at the Greater Memphis Chamber. David McKinney, an attorney, is the new senior vice president of public policy at the chamber. He comes to the post from the city-county Division of Planning and Development. McKinney’s new position is where business means government and politics, which is a busy intersection these days.

When the city terminated its contract with Inland Waste to pick up trash in parts of Cordova and Hickory Hill, it expected Inland would continue on the job for another month. That hasn’t been the case in the acrimonious split. “Despite its contractual obligation to continue service through the end of this month, it appears that our solid waste contractor, Inland Waste, has ended serving customers in the contracted area,” the city Tweeted Wednesday afternoon. Waste Pro is to take the rest of the contract which runs for about another year and began work this past Monday, The plan was for Inland to take care of recycling until Aug. 13 with Waste Pro picking up that as well. So until Aug. 13, recycling pickup in Cordova and Hickory Hill is suspended.

Four replicas of Civil War era cannons were moved out of Memphis Park Wednesday and are to be returned to the Sons of Confederate Veterans who donated them six years ago.

In the “we haven’t seen that before” department, a new Amazon warehouse in South Memphis would use what is described as a “permanent tent” as part of its structure.

The Commercial Appeal picks Toyota Plaza for its new office space.

Four cannons in Memphis Park were moved out of the park Wednesday afternoon with a bit of a detour. The cannons were placed in the park in 2012 by Sons of Confederate Veterans and SCV leader Lee Millar arrived at the park as they were being moved with some paperwork on that very point. Memphis Greenspace president Van Turner, an attorney, gave it a look over and agreed the cannons go back to the SCV with some legal paperwork following to make this all official.

Circuit Court Judge Felicia Corbin-Johnson to rule on a renewed dispute over the expansion of the Madison Hotel into the 1 South Main space at Madison and Main. The question is a second story loft and the discovery that one of the two artists living there isn’t represented in the court settlement terms, which means Aparium, the hotel company expanding the Madison, could be required to go through a separate eviction process and possible settlement.

A progress report about a month out from the unveiling of the branding and look and image of the city’s United Soccer League franchise. No peeking.

Scan Interiors moving out of its Sycamore View location Sept. 25 and it speaks to an evolution in the furniture business in the city. Meanwhile, the county health department is eyeing the location as the new site for its environmental services division.

If you blinked you may have missed them – a band called Adam’s House Cat that found its way to Memphis and specifically Beale Street at the dawn of the 1990s. The band was led by Mike Cooley and Patterson Hood, better known these days for the band that followed after they left Memphis – Drive-By Truckers. Rolling Stone on the Adam’s House Cat lost album that has been found and is about to be released.

Around Thanksgiving, the Orpheum will be the setting for a camp that is for children, including teens, who stutter. The goal of the Nov. 17 and 18 camp is not to stop the kids from stuttering. It’s to get them in the same room with each other to talk about the things that only they experience and keep hidden. In the process, the camp aims to boost their confidence and help them communicate better.

Full disclosure: I stuttered as a child. No idea why or how. It just happened and it was pretty profound. And it’s hard to explain the feeling when you don’t see anyone around you who appears to have this very frustrating problem. Sometimes it was like standing in a crowd as far as the eye can see in every direction but not being a part of it in any way. You think about what you are going to say and what words are going to hang you up and try to find other words to use that start with another letter. Some people will take it as a sign of a lack of intelligence. Others just think you are quiet or shy. In your mind, you are having your own silent conversation, which may make others think you are brooding or withdrawn. You know what you are thinking won’t come out that fast. I used to think it left as mysteriously as it came. That was before I knew patience was a virtue practiced in silence and shared in families who know you even when you don’t say a word.

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