This game was huge for the Lady Vols. Like the South Carolina game, they played like two different teams, playing even in the first half and dominating in the second. One of the key differences this time around was Isabelle Harrison, who had to sit out most of the first half with foul trouble. In the second half with Izzy back almost everything went right, from deadly shooting to rebounding dominance on both ends of the court to ice-cold shooting from Georgia, owing mostly to the same stifling zone defense that rattled the Gamecocks last Thursday in Columbia.
The game was huge because the Lady Vols’ main strength this year, a deep bench, has been diluted first by the season ending surgery undergone by freshman Andraya Carter and more recently the loss of sophomore mainstay Cierra Burdick for at least a month due to an injury sustained in a personal practice session. The team is young, with only two seniors and one junior on the roster and only one player picked for the pre-season all-SEC team, but outside of the inexplicable opening day loss to Chattanooga and back-to-back losses to top-ranked Stanford and Baylor, they have played like a team which intends to challenge for the NCAA crown sooner rather than later.
Georgia was a real test, and the Lady Vols made it look easy. Whatever happens going forward, if they continue to play as hard and unselfishly as they so far this year they will easily finish the year as my favorite squad so far in this, our third season attending games.
I went to a meeting of the Knoxville Writer’s Guild because I’m at the point where I realize I need a little feedback on the stuff I’ve been working on and also because I probably need to hang around actual writers once in a while.
Two people read from their works, one an older lady (not that much older than me) read a chapter from her memoir about what it was like to have an identical twin sister and then not have one after the sister was murdered in the early 1980’s. The second were some poems by a black woman who teaches at Carson-Newman and concerned her impressions and experiences growing up in the North and living now in the South and how, in spite of the assurances from many people she knew, race relations are still something short of ideal.
After the readings and a short Q and A there was a drawing and I won a copy of the memoirist’s book. I had a good feeling going in because the last three numbers of my ticket was the same as Knoxville’s Area Code, which felt significant.
I decided I should buy a copy of the other woman’s book as well to celebrate my good fortune, and both authors were kind enough to sign them, so my signed edition collection stands now at around six.
I sat next to a lady who was kind enough to ask what I was working on, and told me a little bit about what she wrote. I also overhead a woman behind me discussing her science fiction series, which is on it’s fifth volume, and is being produced at the rate of roughly one novel a year. I did not hear whether or not it has been or is being published, but I suspect this information will be possible to acquire at a future meeting.
Overall, it was inspirational. I put in a good morning’s work today, apart from the time spent searching online for obituaries for my recently-deceased second cousin who passed away from cancer at the tender age of 52 in December.
If you are shocked and outraged every time somebody in the opposition party says or does something you find offensive, but excuse THE EXACT SAME BEHAVIOR when someone in the party you support does it, stop posting your party propaganda links on Facebook. No one is reading them except the people who already agree with you.
This ran in the Reader’s Corner on the inside front page of the June 28, 2012 Knoxville News-Sentinel:
“Your piece about the gay parade was NOT journalism. It’s an extremely controversial and emotionally explosive topic, but you presented it with only the positive spin. A HUGE majority of the community does not agree with promoting this kind of event. You should have balanced the story by including a proportionate amount about the opposition. If you are going to run such pro-liberal puffery, disclose your position so that unsuspecting readers can adjust their thinking to the realization that you are writing opinion and propaganda.”
Thank you, Mike, for your hazy idea of what constitutes unbiased journalism. I will hazard a guess that Fox News, that bastion of the same, drones on in your abode around the clock.
Let’s just substitute another type of story the paper not only might have written about in the past, but has: Christianity. In fact, they have an entire religion section. Now in my opinion, which I will concede is not held by a HUGE majority of the community, religion and specifically Christianity is responsible for much of what is wrong with us as a people, particularly among those who give greater credence to the fanciful writings of backwater tribal scribes than to any of the hundreds of more reasonable and learned people who have come along since. Christianity is not only an aider and abetter of homosexual hatred and persecution, it is the primary source of it. And that is only one of its many crimes and abominations. However, that is my opinion; I don’t write to the paper when a bake sale or ordination or something is covered as a news event, demanding they insert the opinion of people like me in the name of “balance”. You see, editorializing about the evils of something in the context of reporting the event WOULD be biased journalism.
I’m pretty sure there are very few unsuspecting readers venturing into a story about gay parades. As you so helpfully point out yourself, it is a controversial and emotionally explosive topic. But, the parade happened. That is factual, and belongs in a news story. People went and had a good time. Factual. News story. Some people, perhaps many people, have a hard time accepting this. Also factual. Not a part of the news story because it doesn’t have anything to do with what was going on, any more than my loathing of the church (along with those who feel the same as I do) belongs in a story about some church doings .
You need to trust that people can actually make up their own minds. I know I don’t need (or want) the paper to tell me what I should think about religion. I also don’t want them (or people who are members of a HUGE majority) telling me what I should think about gay parades, at least not in a news story.
You’ve probably seen those minivans and SUVs driving around with decals on the back window, denoting every member of the family right down to the family cat or dog, sometimes all wearing mouse ears, or wielding tools appropriate to individual interests, like sports equipment or musical instruments?
I like to imagine that the drivers of those vehicles are like World War II fighter pilots, and the figures represent their kills.
We went to Boyd’s Jig and Reel a few nights ago to hear Madison Violet, a Canadian duo in which neither of the women are named Madison or Violet. The draws were, I was familiar with their music from the Internet, I had never been to that bar and wanted to go, and, it was supposedly free. We went early and had dinner. And a Guinness. Both were good, although my fish-to-fry ratio was skewed a little too heavily on the fry side.
As is often the case in these my declining years, I had occasion to doubt my sanity/memory/comprehension skills, because outside the pub, big as a leprechaun, was a signboard proclaiming “Madison Violet”, and “Cover Charge $7”. Well, I’ve been wrong before, and $7 isn’t unreasonable, and we already had good seats at a table where the sound check was going on so when the guy came around for the money I figured, what the heck. Except I didn’t have any money, because I’m pretty much a plastic guy, so we worked it out that we would just put the cover charge on the tip and our waitress, who is probably used to old people and their unhip ways, would give it to the band. The cover charge guy stamped our hands and we all bonded over the mutual trust being displayed.
Except, Kim had her trusty new iPad, and as we waited for dessert she checked the bar’s website, which, along with a lot of other information, included the tidbit that Madison Violet would be performing for….free. Though my sanity/memory/comprehension skills are still in doubt, in this case at least I was right. We showed the page to the waitress, who reported it to somebody in upper management, and before you could say “Tam O’Shanter” she was back with the information that all cover charges would be refunded, and those of us who were supposed to pay by credit card could forget about it. It had clearly been an error and the Jig and Reel did the right thing by honoring their own advertising, so hats off and kudos to them.
Then the band came out. When you’re done reading this you should go give them a listen on YouTube or something. Or right now, if this account is boring you. I’ll wait here, possibly forever.
A 200 pound black bear wandered onto the University of Tennessee campus last week and climbed a tree to avoid the crowd that gathered. The authorities handled the situation by shooting him with one of those tranquilizer darts, causing him to free-fall 20 feet to the ground. He was then transported to the far side of the Smoky Mountains and released, reportedly none the worse for wear.
Of course, it’s pretty easy to imagine there is more to the story, especially if you have no qualms about making stuff up. I imagine the chief animal control officer (picturing a Barney Fife type here) giving the burly ursine fellow a stern warning, along the lines of, we’re going easy on you this time, big guy, but show your face in town again and you can expect a different end to the story, if you know what I mean. Then, a couple of his minions grab the bear by the scruff of the neck and the seat of the pants and toss him unceremoniously off the truck, in a maneuver known since the beginning of time as The Bum’s Rush. I picture him sliding ungracefully forward, face digging a trench in the forest floor with his butt pointing skyward as the officers swagger back towards the truck, wiping their hands briskly in the time-honored gesture that signifies that’s-the-end-of that.
This scenario works best for all concerned if the bear does not regain consciousness until after the officers have driven away.
I decided I was close enough to being the last person to see The Hunger Games so we went to the Wednesday matinee. Even though watching teenagers kill each other didn’t provide the catharsis I was hoping for, it was pretty good. I can’t say if it was faithful to the book or not because I haven’t read the book, but the move did make me think the book might be pretty good because the movie they made out of it was right entertaining, and the author was one of the credited screenwriters so there’s probably some continuity going on.
Anyway, I really just want to say how good Jennifer Lawrence was. Her character bore some resemblance to the backwoods girl she played in Winter’s Bone, except for the bow and arrow and the glamourous costume and makeup sections in the corrupt capital city. But when they she was about to take the elevator up to go out there and fight for their lives, she conveyed the level of fear most of us would feel, and it seemed really genuine, which is to say it was the best kind of acting, which is acting that is so good it doesn’t look anything like acting.
You don’t see a lot of that. Especially from action heroes.
Look at all these free apples Mitt got from fans of his denim.
Mitt Romney wearing jeans, tossing an apple.
Here, poor people.