May 2012 Archives
May 31, 2012
Each June for about two weeks, thousands of visitors flock to Fourth and Gill to witness the neighborhood's residents act pretentious in unison. For 10 days, Knoxville Parks and Recreation will run a free trolley service to bring guests to observe the dazzling phenomenon. "My wife and I come every year," said Rusty Greer. "It's one thing to see a few people being pretentious. But to see it all happening at once is just incredible. It really takes your breath away." While Knoxville is home to 14 species of self-important persons, it is only those found in Fourth and Gill who can synchronize their arrogance. Scientists do not know why. The synchronous pretentiousness will be at its peak beginning Saturday. If you plan on attending, be sure to prepare ahead. The city will close the road to the area each evening and visitors will only be able to enter by using the trolley service.
May 29, 2012
A Knoxville man yesterday paid tribute to the sacrifices made by those in the United States Armed Forces by eating bountiful amounts of grilled meat. Jeff Keeble, 43, displayed his thanks to veterans and their families for their service to the cause of freedom by cooking a juicy sirloin tri-tip steak on the grill, slathering it in steak sauce and devouring it whole. "Nothing reminds me of the cost of freedom more than meat sizzling on a hot grill," said Keeble. "When I think about how my grandfather bravely served in World War II, I usually say a prayer of thanks and then eat three or four hamburgers. Sometimes I take a nap by the pool and drink a couple of beers somewhere in the middle. That, my friends, is what liberty is all about." This is not the first time Keeble has displayed his gratitude. In December he celebrated the birth of Jesus by knocking down an elderly woman with his shopping cart.
May 27, 2012
KNOXVILLE - A faded decal of a comic strip character was arrested this afternoon and charged with indecent exposure. The arrest was part of an undercover police surveillance operation on Sharps Ridge, Knoxville police said. The Calvin decal from the Bill Watterson comic strip "Calvin & Hobbes" was found on the back of a Chevrolet truck with its pants down, urinating on a Ford symbol. The decal, 15, is being held on a $500 bond. It is expected to appear in court on June 4. The stickers were ubiquitous in the early 2000s among men with trucks and mullets. The decals fell out of popularity after police dragnets sent most of the bootlegged images to jail. Several of the Calvin stickers later converted to Christianity and were seen praying on the back windows of vehicles. "I guess we missed this one," said Knoxville police spokesperson Tinah Miller. "But we won't get caught with our pants down again. Figuratively speaking, that is."
May 25, 2012
A total of one person is being laid off as a Dixie Lane lemonade stand tries to halt financial losses.
The staff reduction was announced Thursday.
"This work force reduction is necessary in light of declining revenues in order to keep the lemonade stand financially viable to provide the community and its thirsty, sweaty people with the refreshing, tangy beverages they need," said Chief Executive Officer Aidan Bocangel in a news release.
The lemonade stand is one of Dixie Lane's largest lemon-flavored drink manufacturers. Founded in 2012, the stand produces thirst-quenching, sugar-infused beverages that can be consumed in front of Aidan's house or on the sidewalk. The company now employs about one employee seasonally.
The cutbacks arrived amid the drinkery's ongoing financial stresses. The lemonade stand lost $4 last week, said Chairman Aidan Bocangel.
"In order to break even, we need to collect about $10 per week," Bocangel said. "Right now we're barely collecting $6 per week. Thank God for old Mrs. Lucas."
That adds up to a potential $208 loss in the next year, he said.
Officials at the lemonade stand described the layoff as across-the-board, affecting Ethan Shim, age 8, who was head of legal, manufacturing, marketing, public relations, advertizing, human resources, sales, finance, customer service and custodial services.
"Constant evaluation of teams and processes is necessary for the long-term health of any business," said Chief Financial Officer Aidan Bocangel. "Over the last few weeks we've grown our organization tremendously and made large investments in infrastructure to better serve our community. However, as Dixie Lane and the industry have evolved we've also had to make some difficult decisions in order to address the changing needs of our company."
Shim said that he saw the layoff coming.
"I'm sad to go," said Shim. "But I understand. This is business. We were hemorrhaging money. It doesn't help that we live on a dead end street. And that none of our friends drive yet. I'm surprised we've sold anything at all. If Aidan's parents didn't buy so much product, we wouldn't have made it this long. That being said, what the hell, Aidan?"
May 24, 2012
A car horn blown by the driver of a 2007 Ford Focus was miraculously able to start a stalled automobile blocking the intersection of Montvue Road and Kingston Pike near West Town Mall today. Soon after heroically emitting 112 decibels of noise while shouting obscenities and thrusting his middle finger into the air, the horn's user also managed to airlift the dozens of cars surrounding him that had been rendered motionless by the immobile Sedan. "It was unbelievable," said one observer. "The guy started honking and it's like the laws of physics were rendered obsolete. Newton's first law of motion must be turning in its grave. From now on when I want things to move out of my way I'm going to honk at them and glare."
May 22, 2012
The nation's collective English teachers took another swig of vodka and hung their heads in shame today as Facebook continued to reveal their students' inability to read, write and spell coherently. The popular social networking Website remains a favorite place for teens and their equally illiterate parents to embarrass themselves publicly by their complete lack of mastery over the English language. "Some nights, I just cry myself to sleep," said Knoxville English teacher Emilee Munsey. "It's like they aren't even trying. What kind of a human being writes a sentence like, 'Now u jus need a better paint job?'" Munsey's students persist in composing grammatical units such as "Its ok Jen I knew u got hacked" and Thanx u r too smart gurl! Must run in da family."
May 20, 2012
A bill signed into law in April that would allow public buildings to display the Ten Commandments and other documents deemed as "historically significant" has ended murder in the state of Tennessee. Since the law was signed by Gov. Bill Haslam, not a single Tennessean has murdered, committed adultery, or coveted his neighbor's ass. The bill passed unanimously in the House 93-0 and unanimously in the Senate 30-0. The legislation authorizes counties to display replicas of historical documents including the Ten Commandments, the Magna Carta, the Mayflower Compact, the Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Tennessee Constitution. "Remember back in March when things like theft and murder and adultery existed in this state," said Haslam. "And then we passed this legislation sponsored by Republican Sen. Mike Bell of Riceville and people just stopped doing those things? That was super weird. But then when we posted the U.S. Constitution it didn't stop us from passing laws violating the First Amendment. So that's super weird, too."
May 18, 2012
The slow food movement has been pushing back against fast food culture for nearly three decades.
That's true locally as well, where one Knoxville restaurant does its part to prepare its meals as slowly as humanly possible.
"We love the slow food movement," said Andrea Mosley, the owner of a slow food eatery downtown. "But what we're really going for is more of a slow food lack of movement."
Mosley has been operating her restaurant for just over a year now. She sees herself as helping Americans to rebel against fast food by making them wait so long to be served that they begin hallucinating.
"Some restaurants will throw a meal together for you in five minutes like it's an easy thing to put meat, cheese and vegetables between a couple of pieces of bread," said Jim Kretsu, a frequent patron of Mosley's eatery. "Even if there is no one else in the restaurant waiting in line, they refuse to take their sweet time in preparing your food. That is exactly what is wrong with this country. Food should be lovingly hand-crafted. If my food takes less than 45 minutes to make, I won't eat it."
Kretsu isn't alone. Many people in Knoxville have taken to Mosley's vision for making diners wait a really long time to eat.
"I think it's my favorite restaurant," said Justin Suarez. "It's the best place in town to go to wait 40 minutes for them to make pasta salad. You just don't get that kind of service at Burger King."
Mosley says that her restaurant is committed to community, leisurely dining and the health of those who eat there.
"Americans really like to eat," she said. "Sometimes the best way to make sure they stay healthy is to not feed them. Or to make a person wait until his body has already begun to digest itself."
"The best restaurant meal is one where you can walk back to your house, make a meal yourself, eat it, wash dishes and then walk back to the restaurant before your food has reached you," said Brianne Hembree. "That is the type of experience I am looking for at an eatery."
May 16, 2012
A woman who resides in the 2012th year of the Common Era is still opting to reply all to e-mails when given the chance, a new study has revealed. Researchers at the University of Tennessee confirmed through a study that Doris Whitten, 46, clicks "reply all" instead of just "reply" at least once a week when responding to e-mails that have been copied to multiple recipients. "This data is interesting because it suggests that there are people have not learned that if you click 'reply,' you send a response to only one person, rather than to 200 additional people who do not care," said research scientist Dana Moreside. About 100 percent of the women studied were also shown to still be using AOL for some reason, which apparently still exists.
May 14, 2012
Search and rescue teams Monday are continuing their search for a music festival that went missing in Knoxville in 2010. A helicopter crew will take to the sky Tuesday to look for Big Ears Festival, 3, of Knoxville. Big Ears Festival was last seen in March of 2010 before becoming separated from music fans after a difficult scheduling conflict, Knoxville Police Department officials said. "The area is not for average music festivals," said police spokesperson Tinah Miller. "The terrain is really rugged. You can get lost so easily if you aren't careful. We always recommend that music festivals tell a friend where they'll be before they go out alone." Search and rescue teams have found some of Big Ears Festival's belongings, but he himself remains missing, police said. Organized by Knoxville's A.C. Entertainment, the 2010 festival was praised by "Rolling Stone" as "arguably the classiest, most diverse festival in the country."
May 13, 2012
A lighthearted Chicago teen is in jail today after he was busted for boppin' on Market Square Saturday night. Ren McCormack was taken into custody shortly before midnight after he began dancing in a city cafe that has no permit for dancing. A 1962 Knoxville ordinance requires establishments that serve beer to have an open floor with at least 144 square feet that are separate from drinking areas. The law was passed because Tennessee legislators at the time believed dancing to be a gateway sexual activity. "Seems that a bunch of kids was raising some hell over on Market Square a few days back," said police spokesperson Tinah Miller. "Tore up the fields, turned over a tractor and everything. Today someone suggested to me there's been some trouble up at the high school. I think it was drugs." This is not the first time the downtown pedestrian mall has run afoul of the law. In 2010, a Market Square restaurant was cited for not offering a hitching post for horses near the front of its building.
May 11, 2012
A group of Knoxville superheroes has successfully brought a malevolent Fountain City crematorium to justice.
The super group consisting of Johnny Knoxville, Quentin Tarantino, Megan Fox, Robin Wilhoit and a Fountain City duck stopped the crematorium from annoying the neighborhood's residents by existing near them.
The team was formed by perpetual Tennessee gubernatorial candidate Basil Marceaux, director of the peacekeeping organization known as "VOTE FOR ME AND IF I WIN I WILL IMMUNE YOU FROM ALL STATE CRIMES FOR THE REST OF YOU LIFE!"
Marceaux assembled the members of the team after the residents of Fountain City were viciously forced to live near the crematorium after it was issued a permit through the proper city channels.
"As soon as I heard about this grave injustice, that's when I sprang into action," said Marceaux. "I gathered together Knoxville's mightiest heroes for a little bit of street justice."
Marceaux's super team included: Fox, whose super power is to be all hot and stuff; Tarantino, who possesses a nearly indestructible ego; Knoxville, who has the ability to stick rusty nails in his colon without dying; a Fountain City duck, whose favorite color is blood; and Wilhoit, who is incapable of being disliked.
"The team acted immediately," said Marceaux. "Megan and Robin distracted the crematorium while Quentin's ego and the duck pummeled the building with blow after merciless blow. It didn't stand a chance. Meanwhile Johnny Knoxville was over in the corner eating flaming shards of glass off an overweight man's hairy stomach. I'm not really sure why. That guy is one weird kid. And I know a little something about weird."
After ironically burning the crematorium and scattering its ashes to the wind, Marceaux vowed that the team would go its separate ways until the residents of Fountain City are again threatened by the forces of City Council.
The evil crematorium is not the first menace the Knoxville Avengers have faced, however. On Saturday the group defeated Super Moon, an intergalactic menace whose super power is to appear about 14 percent bigger and 30 percent brighter than normal.
May 10, 2012
A group of prominent Old Testament figures residing in North Carolina were among voters who passed a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage Tuesday. The ban passed by a margin of 61 percent to 39 percent. Over 1.5 million votes were cast in the referendum. "Marriage was meant to be between one man and three women, and possibly several more concubines," said Abraham, one supporter of the ban. "But not between two men. Ewww, that's so gross." The amendment alters North Carolina's constitution to say "marriage between one man and one woman is the only domestic legal union that shall be valid or recognized in this state." "Wait, what," said David, former ruler of Judah and the United Kingdom of Israel. "The amendment says marriage is between one man and one woman? Well that just doesn't seem right at all. Seven of my wives are going to be really mad about this."
May 8, 2012
A Farragut woman who typed 'LOL' while chatting with a friend on Facebook did not in fact laugh out loud, witnesses say. "Her face kind of contorted to what I guess you could describe as a mild smirk," said Robert Miller, who was sitting at a nearby table when the chat conversation took place at about 9:30 a.m. Monday. "But that was really about it. I definitely didn't hear anything like laughter." Other witnesses corroborate Miller's account. "She told people she laughed out loud," said Ashley Denning. "That's ridiculous. I had three double shots of espresso yesterday morning. I was wide awake. If she had laughed, I would have known. And she certainly didn't laugh her ass off. I saw that thing. It was huge." The typist, whose name was not released, is believed to be a pathological liar.
May 6, 2012
LENOIR CITY -- An article profiling the life of a gay student written for the Lenoir City High School yearbook has led several of the city's residents to call for a ban on empathy. The article, which was composed by the yearbook's staff of students, interviews a student about what it is like to be gay in a small East Tennessee town. After the school's yearbooks were distributed last Friday, a number of Lenoir City residents asked the city to ban compassion effective immediately. "This ability to recognize and share the feelings that are experienced by other sentient beings has got to stop and it has got to stop now," said Lenoir City resident Dan Cavers. "What are we supposed to do, constantly think about what life might be like for other people? That's a load of crap. I'm not going to do it."
May 4, 2012
Sweetwater resident Paul Bruner has been a vampire for years, but he's worried about his prospects this year.
"Mosquitoes don't care about undead creatures who subsist on blood," he said. "They just want to take all the good blood for themselves. They're little jerks. All they care about is me, me, me."
Bruner is one of several vampires in the East Tennessee area who are concerned about this year's mosquito season, which promises to be longer due to the mild winter.
Many of the local vampires turned out in downtown Knoxville Thursday to protest the increased mosquito activity and to ask the government to take action. They lined up in front of the City County Building with signs reading, "We'll give mosquitoes our blood when they take it from our cold, undead lips" and "There will be blood."
Local health department officials say they're concerned about the potentially lengthy mosquito season, but not necessarily because of vampires.
"We've had a lot of warm weather and a lot of wet weather," said Knox County Health Department spokesman Daniel Aurdal. "When you have those things, you have mosquitoes. It's like how when you get the Tennessee legislature together, you get a lot of stupid."
He continued, "We're working hard to address this problem. But it's really because mosquitoes are annoying, not because we want to help vampires. Mosquitoes can cause West Nile. But vampires can cause teenage angst and really bad novels. It's a tossup which one is worse."
Nonetheless, Aurdal said that crews will be out every day, using larvicide to kill hatching insects, setting traps in known problem areas and burning copies of "Twilight."
Bruner said he hopes officials will act quickly so they can go on to kill those officials and drink their blood.
"The mosquitoes are already out in full force," he said. "It's hard enough to be a vampire in East Tennessee. There are too many people with guns. And in football season the blood alcohol content is always so high. Now we have to compete with annoying flying insects, too."
May 3, 2012
Knoxville's iconic Sunsphere is having an early mid-life crisis. The hexagonal steel truss structure, who celebrated his 30th birthday this week, says he is embarrassed by how much time he spends in bars and thinks it stems from questioning his life as he gets older. "This just isn't where I thought I'd be at 30," said the symbol of the 1982 World's Fair. "I'm still single. I'm unemployed. I've gained 30 pounds since college. I'll probably never have kids to live vicariously through. I doubt I could even be a joke on 'The Simpsons' now. Maybe I should get a red sports car and get it over with." The Sunsphere says that he is thinking of going to see a counselor, but that he might drunk text his old girlfriend first.
May 1, 2012
Legislation banning parents from reading their children the Christmas story is headed to the governor's desk after approval by the state House of Representatives Friday. The bill would prevent anyone from reading Bible stories that fail to explicitly promote abstinence. The bill was drafted by former Sen. David Fowler, who now heads a conservative Christian group called the Family Action Council of Tennessee. "What's the real message here," asked Fowler of the nativity story. "It's that abstinence isn't 100 percent effective. Here's an unwed teenager who didn't have relations and she still got pregnant. Is this really what we want our children learning in Sunday school? We've also recommended that churches rip the book of Song of Songs out of their Bibles. Whoever wrote that book did not have abstinence in mind. 'Your breasts are like two fawns' indeed."