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The Tale Of The Life And Times Of A Noble Chicken By Jim Pfitzer

FREE • News, Views, Music, Film, Dining, Arts & Entertainment • March 18, 2010 • Vol. 7 - Issue 11 • www.chattanoogapulse.com


President Jim Brewer, II

2010

Publisher Zachary Cooper Contributing Editor Janis Hashe News Editor Gary Poole Calendar Editor Kathryn Dunn Advertising Manager Rhonda Rollins Advertising Sales Rick Leavell, Leif Sawyer, Townes Webb Art Director Kelly Lockhart Graphic Design Jennifer Grelier Staff Photographer Louis Lee Contributing Writers Gustavo Arellano, Rob Brezsny Chuck Crowder, Michael Crumb Hellcat, Joshua Hurley Matt Jones, Phillip Johnston Jonathan Meyer, Ernie Paik Rick Pimental-Habib, Ph.D. Jim Pfitzer, Stephanie Smith Alex Teach, Colleen Wade Editorial Cartoonist Rick Baldwin Editorial Intern Jonathan Selby Copy Assistant Bryanna Burns Daddy Mac’ll Make You Jump Josh Lang Contact Info: Phone (423) 648-7857 Fax (423) 648-7860 info@chattanoogapulse.com Calendar Submissions calendar@chattanoogapulse.com Advertising advertising@chattanoogapulse.com The Pulse is published weekly and is distributed throughout the city of Chattanooga and surrounding communities. The Pulse is available free of charge, limited to one copy per reader. No person without written permission from the publishers may take more than one copy per weekly issue. The Pulse may be distributed only by authorized distributors.

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ontents

11 CROSSING THE ROAD: A CHICKEN’S JOURNEY By Jim Pfitzer “The ground was frozen solid so I couldn’t bury her,” she began slowly. “It was during that week of sub-freezing weather…” Her voice trailed as she thought back to the trying morning in question. “It took awhile,” she continued. “But I managed to break open the compost…”

feature stories 6 ANGELS OF MONTGOMERY By Janis Hashe Ever since that December day in 1955 when Rosa Parks refused to go to the back of the bus, Montgomery’s name has been engraved in the civil rights movement.

18 DON’T STASH THE ’STACHE By Hellcat If you don’t already know about Moustache Friday, then I don’t know where you’ve been hiding the last few years. I suppose I can let it slide, provided that you don’t let it happen again.

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By Philip Johnston Rarely do the words “fun for the whole family” and “Arts and Education Council Independent Film Series” go together—but there’s always room for an exception.

24 CHATTANOOGA’S GONE TO FIDDLIN’ By Stephanie Smith A concert violin sings a polished melody, while a fiddle warbles a raw tune. That raw, inimitable sound quality only associated with an oldtime fiddle is almost nonexistent in modern times, even though it is a staple of the American musical repertoire.

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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR PULSE BEATS SHRINK RAP LIFE IN THE NOOG ON THE BEAT ASK A MEXICAN

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EDITOON THE LIST CITY COUNCILSCOPE POLICE BLOTTER MUSIC CALENDAR NEW MUSIC REVIEWS NEW IN THEATERS A&E CALENDAR DINING OUT SPOTLIGHT SPIRITS WITHIN FREE WILL ASTROLOGY JONESIN’ CROSSWORD


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by Rick Baldwin

Places To Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day Right While St. Patrick’s Day has come and gone here in the Scenic City, it is never too early to start making vacation plans for next year...and here are some helpful suggestions. 1. Dublin, Ireland — St. Patrick’s Day belongs to the Irish, so it’s fitting that a top Irish city would be at the head of the table. 2. Philadelphia — Since 1771, the people of Philadelphia have officially celebrated St. Patrick’s Day. 3. San Francisco — More than just a parade, the St. Patrick’s Day weekend celebration in San Francisco is a huge cultural event. Few others can compete with this one. 4. Chicago — The Chicago River turns green every March as the people of the Windy City celebrate another big day. 5. Coatbridge — Not just one day, but a week-long celebration, with many different musical acts, parades and festivals. The annual event is known for honoring the old Irish heritage and it’s as authentic as they come. 6. New York — The annual parade is one of the city’s largest, and that’s saying a lot considering the vast number of parades that take place there during the year. 7. Boston — Come hungry! Boston has a long history as a home to generations of Irish immigrants, so the home-cooking becomes readily available during the third week of March. 8. Savannah — Long known as the best place in the South to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, Savannah paints the city green for the big day, including their river, just like Chicago. Source: eZineHolidays

Letters to the Editor Dog Chaining Chattanooga, with the help of the McKamey Animal Shelter, recently passed an ordinance banning the 24hour chaining of dogs. This is a great first step. However, as a friend pointed out, “What’s the city going to do, come out and chalk the dogs to make sure they have been moved?” I also wonder what official is going to be wandering around at 3:00 a.m. checking infringements. This ordinance looks sort of good on paper, but in reality it is the tip of the iceberg. Moreover, in lieu of chaining, penning animals is considered acceptable confinement. I do not see much difference in being kept on an eight-foot chain versus being kept in an 8’ by 8’ pen. Many cities have laws against chaining period, which I think is a step in the right direction, along with minimums on fenced-in space. I’d also like to see a program for people who are not able to keep their dogs due to these constraints that will make security systems and/or fencing more affordable. Elizabeth Longphre

Easter, while heavily commercialized, still are able to remind people their historical and religious purpose. But how many people know anything about the real Saint Patrick? Or why the Feast of Saint Patrick, which was a confirmation of the role Christianity played in the history of Ireland, has become perverted into an excuse to drink green beer and wear green clothes? We live in a disposable society where tradition and history get tossed out with yesterday’s garbage. Is it any wonder why holidays have become so shallow and pointless? Gregory Peterson

St. Patrick’s Pshaw I find myself agreeing with Chuck Crowder [“Erin Go Braugh…Humbug” – Life In The Noog] over his disdain for the St. Patrick’s holiday. Like so many other holidays in this country, it has been utterly warped by the powers of commerce. At least Christmas and

From the Editor Several members of the Society for Creative Anachronism wrote in questioning the account of how the organization started, specifically the location of the backyard party in Berkeley, California that is widely credited as being the birthplace of the

Fifty Great Years Happy Birthday, Dr. Rick [“Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously” - Shrink Rap]! You have become an invaluable Chattanooga institution, and you help more people each week than anyone I know. Please keep on imparting your words of thoughtful inspiration and gentle guidance. Here’s to the next fifty! Rev. Bill Wallace

society. According to the organization’s own official publication, The Known World Handbook¸ the SCA was indeed founded at a party in the backyard of author Diana Paxson, not Marion Zimmer Bradley. A contemporary of Bradley confirmed that she often delighted in “muddying the historical waters” of the SCA as a way to keep members from getting overly serious about their participation in the society. Also, we inadvertently misspelled the name of photographer Lesha Patterson in the credits to the cover story on the SCA last week. We apologize for the error.

Send all letters to the editor and questions to info@chattanoogapulse.com We reserve the right to edit letters for content and space. Please include your full name, city and contact information.

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The Pulse | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | March 18, 2010

Chattanooga's Weekly Alternative


Pulse Beats Census 2010: Let The Counting Begin

Quote Of The Week:

A rundown of the newsy, the notable, and the notorious...

The 2010 Census questionnaire will arrive at households throughout the region next week. Census Bureau officials ask you to watch for the 10-question form, fill it out and mail it back immediately in the provided, postage-paid envelope. This is the easiest way to participate in the census that takes place every decade, as required by the U.S. Constitution. “If the people of Tennessee complete the census form and return it quickly, then we won’t have to go out, knock on doors, and collect the information,” said William W. Hatcher, regional director for the U.S. Census Bureau. “Returning completed questionnaires saves taxpayer money and increases the likelihood of a full count. That translates into political power and needed federal funding for the state.” Hatcher noted that for every one percentage point increase in mail returns of the census form nationwide, taxpayers save about $85 million in cost of sending census takers door-to-door to collect census information. April 1 is Census Day, the reference day for the population count. Every person living in a residence should be listed on the census form, including relatives and nonrelatives, as of April 1. People should be counted where they live and sleep most of the time. You should not wait until April 1 to return the census form but return it immediately upon receipt. Census takers will begin collecting information from households that did not return the form on May 1. Census results are important. They are used to determine each state’s seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and to redraw state and local voting districts. More than $400 billion in federal funds is distributed annually through state,

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local and tribal governments to communities each year based on population data. The funds go for such things as schools, hospitals, transportation projects, roads, jobtraining programs and emergencyresponse tools. “It’s a win-win situation when people answer the census and mail back the questionnaire,” Hatcher said. “It’s vital that everyone be counted once and in the right place.” For help in completing the census form, call the toll-free Telephone Questionnaire Help Line at (866) 872-6868. Spanish speakers can call (866) 9282010. Questionnaire Assistance Centers (QACs) also are opening across the state to assist people. Language Assistance Guides will be available in 59 languages at the QACs, and callers can get a census form in one of six languages. QAC locations will be posted March 18 at www.2010census.gov

Artists Welcome To “Choose Chattanooga” This month, ArtsMove Chattanooga will graduate from CreateHere, and Choose Chattanooga will become the parent organization for the program. Choose Chattanooga works to promote the amenities and attractions of the greater Chattanooga region. This adoption of the program by Choose Chattanooga is indicative of an intrinsic message: Choose Chattanooga will promote the region by creating marketing and media programs that connect prospective and current residents and stimulate relocation. Additionally, they recognize the importance of attracting and retaining artists and artisans, like

“We have documented progress under him, so it makes no sense to come in and take the principal out.” —Dr. Jim Scales, Hamilton County Superintendant of Schools, throwing his support behind Howard Principal Paul Smith in the wake of state plans to take over the school and possibly replace Smith.

Here is one of the more interesting agenda items set to be discussed at the March 23 meeting of the Chattanooga City Council.

visual artists, culinary artists, musicians, and the like, to our city. They know that the attraction and retention of creative individuals to a city is what makes a community thrive and prosper. ArtsMove, an artist relocation incentive, previously offered by CreateHere, has served to revitalize Chattanooga’s urban core by helping artists and artisans move to Chattanooga. The program provides up to $2,500 to help cover moving expenses, and offers a network of support and connectivity to individuals interested in adding to Chattanooga’s vibrant cultural tapestry. To date, the program has helped relocate 30 working artists and artisans into revitalizing neighborhoods in the city’s urban core. Home sales resulting from the program come in at just over $4.9 million. “But even more important than the infusion of capital into our local economy, we have seen the individuals who have joined our community via ArtsMove truly invest in their neighborhoods and enrich the quality of life there,” said Jessica Martin, former program administrator and CreateHere Senior Fellow. “Choose Chattanooga’s mission made it an obvious choice to become the pilot organization for this initiative,” according to Martin. “We are very excited to see Choose Chattanooga nurture and grow such a bold and impactful program.”

5. Ordinances - Final Reading: b) An ordinance to amend Chattanooga City Code, Part II, Chapter 31, Article VIII, Division 7, Water Quality Fees and Adjustments, Sections 31-354, and 31-356. (As amended.) For months now a variety of groups, committees (both council and blue ribbon) and even private organizations have been debating how much the City of Chattanooga should charge residents, businesses and nonprofits for water quality. At the very core of the issue is the city’s inability to meet federal and statemandated water quality standards, which means the city is potentially facing hefty fines. Add in a complete lack of interest by past councils and administrations to incrementally increase fees to keep pace with expenses, and the city is confronted with a no-win situation. Which is why this ordinance will be so closely watched as the council must decided among a variety of recommendations on how to set the various rates. Bring popcorn. The Chattanooga City Council meets each Tuesday at 6 p.m. in the City Council Building at 1000 Lindsay St. For more information on the agendas, visit www.Chattanooga.gov/City_ Council/110_Agenda.asp

March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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Driving Diversions

Angels of Montgomery

By Janis Hashe

“We toured the Parsonage House, standing in the kitchen where Dr. King sat at midnight and experienced the ‘epiphany’ that led him to continue his leadership of the civil rights movement.”

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The Pulse | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | March 18, 2010

T

he first time I visited Montgomery, AL two years ago, my goal was seeing the Alabama Shakespeare Festival, one of the biggest in the world. It lived up to my expectations and then some, with its focus not only on the Bard, but on one of the nation’s premier new playwright development programs. The city also impressed me with its dining and drinking options—I found far more sophisticated fare than I was expecting to. But it was my second visit, during last month’s Black History Month that blew my socks off. Ever since that December day in 1955 when Rosa Parks refused to go to the back of the bus, Montgomery’s name has been engraved in the civil rights movement. And if you have not had a chance to drive the three-and-a-half hours that will take you right into the middle of history, make a plan to do so now. The day of my adventure dawned

bright blue and upper 60s, and I decided I’d walk from my hotel, the new, 12-story Renaissance Montgomery Hotel & Spa. Just a few blocks away I found my first stop, Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church. Now a National Historic Landmark, this church, founded in a former slaver’s pen, is where Dr. King preached on his first assignment as a young pastor, and was also the site for much of the planning for the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Tours are often led by Miriam Norris, who walks visitors through the meeting room and the church itself, telling the story of what took place there. The church originally built to hold only black worshippers is still in use each Sunday—now with a mixedrace congregation. I chose to continue walking to my next destination, which is a full seven city blocks, and that proved to be the best decision of the day. As I walked around the corner, heading for the Dexter Parsonage Museum, the house that housed not only Dr. King and family from 1954 to 1960, but his fiery forebear, Vernon Johns, a civil rights pioneer, I encountered a group of mostly young people, the girls in long skirts, their hair in braids, the boys with shortcropped hair and shirts tucked in. One of their adult leaders approached me and asked if I would like to come with them next door, a site not usually open to the public, where they were meeting Mrs. Vera Harris, widow of Dr. Richard Harris, the pharmacist who helped care for 31 wounded Freedom Riders in that house, now marked with a roadside plaque as a monument. They were a high school group from a Bruderhof community in Farmington, PA, and were on a trip re-tracing major civil rights sites. Some of the young people’s grandfathers and greatgrandfathers had walked with Dr. King in the third Selma to Montgomery

March. They stood on the lawn of the modest house and sang hymns, and the white-haired Mrs. Harris came out on the porch and sang with them. “We did what we needed to do,” she told them. We then toured the Parsonage House, standing in the kitchen where Dr. King, under enormous pressure and with death threats arriving daily, sat at midnight and experienced the “epiphany” that led him to continue his leadership of the civil rights movement. We listened to a tape of Dr. King talking about this experience in a speech, and then, with our wonderful guide, Shirley Cherry, the young people and their teachers sang “Balm in Gilead.” It was one of the most moving experiences of my life. Saying good-by to the group, I walked back to the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Civil Rights Memorial & Center. I’d visited the center on the previous trip, and knew it to be another don’t-miss, with its beautiful fountain memorial, designed by Maya Lin, and center dedicated to civil rights movement martyrs, Wall of Tolerance, and 56-seat theatre where visitors can view short films about civil rights. I ended my day at the Rosa Parks Library & Museum and Children’s Wing, located on the site of the Empire Theatre, in front of which Mrs. Parks refused to give up her seat. In years of traveling many places in the world, I don’t know if I have ever been as impressed with an exhibit as I was with the recreated street scene and replica of the bus, inside which a video runs, showing life-size people boarding and getting off the bus, recreating what happened on December 1, 1955, including Mrs. Parks’ arrest. In a nutshell, this is a weekend trip that anyone interested in this era of American history should not miss.

For more information: (800) 240-9452. www.visitingmontgomery.com

Chattanooga's Weekly Alternative


A weekly roundup of the newsworthy, notable and often head-scratching stories gleaned from police reports from the Chattanooga Police Department, the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office, the Bradley County Sheriff’s Department and the Dalton Police Department.

• It was a bizarre Sunday afternoon for one Chattanooga police officer. While running radar, Officer Clayton Holmes’s patrol car was attacked and heavily damaged by…a bulldog. Holmes says he had stopped to work on a report when he felt his car shaking. He got out to investigate and found a bulldog chewing on his patrol car. The dog chewed two tires and the entire front bumper off the car. The dog also attacked two cars driving by and a second police car that arrived on scene during the incident. O.C. spray and a Taser were used on the dog, but nothing stopped it. McKamey Animal Center personnel responded to the scene and managed to capture the bulldog along with two other dogs. The owner of the dogs was cited by McKamey. • Observant neighbors in a Brainerd neighborhood helped Chattanooga Police break up a home burglary ring. Officers in the Brainerd area responded to a Montview Drive residence after neighbors called in about suspicious activity and a possible burglary in progress. A witness observed the suspects leaving in a vehicle prior to police arriving and called in a description. Officers spotted the ve-

hicle in which the three parties fled the scene. Police apprehended two of the suspects after receiving calls from concerned citizens about the suspicious parties running through the area. One of the men confessed to not only the Montview robbery by a second one at a nearby address. The stolen property from both residences was recovered. • More observant neighbors, this time in East Ridge, also were very helpful to law enforcement. East Ridge Police praised alert neighbors and fast police response times in foiling an attempted theft of an air conditioning unit last week. Police responded to a Hurst Street resident after a neighbor called 911 and advised that two men had fled the scene on foot after their vehicle had become stuck in the yard. The first officer arrived on the scene in three minutes to discover the pair had removed an air conditioning unit from the outside of the home and loaded it into a Ford Explorer that had been pulled into the yard. As the suspects attempted to leave the scene, the vehicle became stuck. The suspects then unloaded the air conditioner and again attempted to leave the scene in the vehicle, but were unsuccessful. After this failed attempt, the suspects abandoned their vehicle and fled on foot. Officers who had established a perimeter

Chattanooga Street Scenes

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located the suspects near the intersection of Holiday Drive and Floyd Drive, where they were taken into custody. Both were charged with theft over $1,000 and vandalism. • Sometimes an officer is in the right place at the right time. A daylight burglary of a house on North Chamberlain Avenue was disrupted when the thieves were interrupted by a Chattanooga Police Property Crimes Investigator. The officer spotted several men climbing through a window of the residence. When he approached the house, all three tried to flee. One suspect was apprehended on the scene. Following a short foot pursuit, the other two suspects, both juveniles, were apprehended in the area by patrol officers. All three suspects have been charged with aggravated burglary. Photography by Louis Lee

Aw shucks.

March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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The Pulse | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | March 18, 2010

Chattanooga's Weekly Alternative


Shrink Rap

By Rick Pimental-Habib, Ph.D

Spring Cleaning for the Soul N

ow that we’re on the threshold of a new season, a walk around the yard shows Mother Nature giving the merest but definitely hopeful whiffs of spring: I noticed a few buds on the dogwoods, the daffodils have started to bloom, and, can it be that the yard will need mowing soon? (Ugh.) And even if this time of year is still a bit unpredictable weather-wise, and it throws us for a loop with a few more cold snaps, and possibly even—gasp–snow (!), there’s that delightful hopefulness that nonetheless perseveres when one starts to enjoy the earliest signs of Nature’s bounty from the window. The deadwood is falling away, and will soon be obscured as the green leaves and colorful gardens start to fill in the stark gaps of a long, dreary, damp winter. Space must be made, for the new season is, we can rest assured, coming. Some things you can just count on. I find this to be a wonderful time of year to think about clearing away, and finding renewal in the space that’s created. Nature does it automatically. I imagine the term, “spring cleaning,” was born out of this natural rhythm to sweep out the old and to re-freshen, renew. In our day-to-day living, this manifests in, say, finally getting around to cleaning out that hallway closet or the attic or garage. It’s time. There’s newness of some sort waiting just around the corner; waiting for space to be created, then the new can step in and start to bloom, start to live, start to take up some of its rightful place. Really, though, it’s the internal spaces of our lives that need our careful attention, and spring is the perfect time

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for this care, this mindfulness, to come alive. My question to you is: What deadwood are you dragging around that’s become ready for you to sweep aside? And in the process of letting go, what is waiting to come into your life that’s lighter, healthier, more rewarding, filled with hope? When I give talks about relationships, or self-esteem, or personal growth, I say that when you let go of the one unhealthy relationship in your life, you are then free to turn in another direction, and open your arms to welcome the 10 healthy relationships that have been waiting in line to meet you. They’re there, just as surely as winter steps aside to allow for spring. And they may be relationships of all kinds, with people, things, and situations. That which no longer serves you—from the dust in the attic to the unhealthy partnership, from the dead twigs in the yard to the abusive work situation, from the guilt that burdens you to the fears that hold you back— must, at some point, be swept aside to make room for the exciting, new, healthy changes that await you. This is about your worlds, external and internal. “Freeing up” happens

outside yourself and within yourself. Sure, there’s “stuff” around you to be cleaned out, to finally be free of. But let’s think about the “stuff” on the inside. What’s keeping your heart from loving? What’s keeping your soul from being free? What’s keeping you from acting the fool, taking the risk, going out on the limb…living the life you’re meant to live, in surround sound and full color? This is the perfect time, because it’s spring and because there’s no time like the present to ponder these very ideas. Your selfesteem requires it. Your ability to enjoy your life feeds off it. And your relationships can’t possibly blossom without it. So the questions I encourage you to ask yourself this spring are: 1. What am I holding onto that I need to release? 2. Why is it hard for me to let go? 3. Where did I learn about holding tightly versus letting go freely, and does this still serve me? 4. What would I welcome into my life right now? 5. What kind of space do I need to create in order to have what I truly want? 6. How will I create that space? Give these some serious thought, some energy, some meditation. And maybe don’t worry so much about getting to that hallway closet. It’s your soul that needs you. Until next time: “You become 21, turn 30, push 40, reach 50, make it to 60, and hit 70. After that it’s a day-byday thing!” — George Carlin.

“What’s keeping you from acting the fool, taking the risk, going out on the limb…living the life you’re meant to live, in surround sound and full color?”

Dr. Rick Pimental-Habib, Ph.D., is a psychotherapist, minister, and educator, in private practice in Chattanooga, and the author of “Empowering the Tribe” and “The Power of a Partner.” Visit his new wellness center, Well Nest, at www. WellNestChattanooga.com, and his website at www.DrRPH.com.

March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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The Pulse | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | March 18, 2010

Chattanooga's Weekly Alternative


Cover Story

Story by Jim Pfitzer

“I changed my

route taking my son to school because I can’t stand to see the trucks with all those chickens packed together…”

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Crossing the Road:

A Chicken’s Journey “The ground was frozen solid so

I couldn’t bury her,” she began slowly. “It was during that week of sub-freezing weather…” Her voice trailed as she thought back to the trying morning in question. “It took awhile,” she continued. “But I managed to break open the compost and bury her there…underneath a cushaw cross...” Candice Daugherty, assistant manager at Crabtree Farms in Chattanooga, went on to explain how she had been the only one at the farm that morning—a “snow day,” she called it. She worked in the office

for a while before deciding to check on things in the greenhouse. When the big white chicken she lovingly called “Chicky,” didn’t meet her at the door, she began to worry. She scanned the greenhouse. She didn’t have far to look. On her left, a few white feathers stuck over the edge of a 50-gallon water bucket. “That bucket is big—about two-and-ahalf feet tall.” Daugherty said, her brow furrowed with disgust. “She had to put some effort into getting up there, but she couldn’t get back out…she was stiff as a board. I saw her and just started cussin’.” March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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Cover Story I wondered how a fat and awkward bird like that could get to the top of such a big bucket, so I asked Daugherty if she ever saw her fly. “No, not really,” she responded. “If you’d walk away (from her), she would scream, ‘I’m comin! I’m comin!’” She went on to describe a big bird with a wobbly gait that would run after her, flapping its wings, never getting off the ground. Around the corner from us, Farm Manager Joel Houser was listening to our conversation. “We went from being repulsed by her to falling in love with her,” he added. “Chicky” went by many names in her last 30 days, but most folks called her Chicken Little. Her odd way of wobbling when she walked, the curious way she cocked her head and looked up at folks, and the way she followed farm workers and visitors around like a puppy made her irresistible to almost all who met her. Chicken Little’s journey to Crabtree began on the morning of December 3, 2009. Allison Fellers was driving home from taking her son to school. It was 7:45 a.m. and the selfproclaimed “not-a-morning-person” was still in her pajamas when she saw something wobbling around in the middle of the road. “It didn’t know if it should go right or left. It was stuck there in the road.” When a man in a minivan slammed on the brakes, narrowly missing the confused bird, Fellers pulled over, turned on her flashers, ran to the middle of the road, knelt down in her multi-colored, polka-dot flannel pajamas and down slippers, said a prayer, scooped up the chicken, and ran back to her car. Chicken Little was “near death” and “covered from head to tail in chicken poop” when Fellers found her lost in the middle of Broad Street in front of the Pilgrim’s Pride processing facility. She put the chicken in the front seat, but it immediately jumped to the floorboard where it sat, unmoving, eyes closed, all the way to the farm. Chickens were not new to Fellers. Before she and her husband John moved from Signal Mountain down to the Southside neighborhood of Cowart Place, they kept egg-layers for a while, but this one was unlike any chicken she had ever encountered. “It didn’t have the natural shape of a chicken. I don’t know if it was the lack of feathers…” Fellers recounted how her whole car reeked of chicken feces and how the chicken was “practically bald with just a few sparse feathers here and there.” Explaining the chicken’s strange shape and gait, Mike Barrow, greenhouse manager, said, “[Factory farm chickens] have a tough time standing on their own. They are bred for muscle size but don’t develop strength.” In spite of the fact that Crabtree is a vegetable farm and doesn’t raise any animals, Chicken Little was not the first chicken dropped off at the urban farm. “Someone brought us a rooster that didn’t like kids,” said Joel Houser, farm manager. “We fattened it for a few days and then ate it, so when

colored popcorn on the ground in front of Chicken Little and the bird immediately went for the yellow corn, devouring it but ignoring the other colors. “Must have looked like whatever they fed it where it was raised,” Daugherty reasoned. With limited feeding success now under her belt, Daugherty gained some hope and started experimenting. She offered a worm, but even when she draped it over the chicken’s beak, it wouldn’t eat it. Then she put some popcorn on a cushaw squash. Chicken Little ate the popcorn and when bits of squash stuck to the corn, she quickly discovered she liked that too. Realizing that the chicken had the capacity to be taught, Daugherty waited for a sunny day, then shooed the now-named “Chicken Little” out of the greenhouse. Again, she tried showing her an earthworm. This time, the more alert and less hungry chicken saw the wriggler and pecked it right up, so she gave her a handful of soil filled with worms. It worked...to a degree. Chicken Little watched the dirt and pecked out anything she saw moving, but she made no effort to scratch at the dirt to uncover more food. Daugherty started leaving seed, a squash, an apple or some popcorn out in the greenhouse at night. During the day they let her out, gave her free-range access to the farm. After being introduced to her new menu, Chicken Little started following Daugherty around the farm. Surrounded by enough quality food to feed an army of chickens, this one was interested only in what Daugherty would give her. One day, while weeding, Daugherty found a slug. Since her friend stood by looking for a treat, she tried tossing it the slug. The chicken took one sideways glance at the pest and pecked it up. Daugherty began encouraging the chicken to go everywhere with her. She took her in the hoop house (a plastic-sided, tunnel-shaped greenhouse for winter growing) and Chicken Little followed along, eating whatever she threw her. Daugherty made the mistake of tossing a wilted piece of kale to the eating machine. She loved it and couldn’t be stopped from eating it, so Daugherty imposed a new rule on the chicken with the growing appetite. No Chickens in the hoop houses! Chicken Little didn’t seem to mind the restriction, though. Daugherty taught her to eat clover and as long as she kept talking to her, the bird followed along outside the hoop house, waiting for her friend to emerge, all the while stuffing herself with clover. By the end of a long day, Chicken Little’s crop looked like a baseball. “Overnight, her gullet would shrink, but the end of the day, she would be fat again,” Houser observed. It was the following Wednesday when Daugherty says she really fell in love with the bird. The crew was pulling privet (an invasive European hedge that thrives in edge habitat) at the margin of the property. Chicken Little was right alongside. She

“We put her in the greenhouse to protect her from hawks…put in a bowl of water and a winter squash, and she didn’t touch it. She didn’t know what real food was. Didn’t recognize it.”

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(Fellers) called, we thought, ‘Great, another one to eat!’ When we saw it, though, we knew we couldn’t eat it.” When the folks at Crabtree first saw (and smelled) the disheveled chicken Fellers delivered, nobody thought it had a chance at survival. Daugherty opened the passenger door and looked down at the smelly mess in the floorboard. The chicken didn’t even open its eyes as she reluctantly wrapped her arms around it and lifted it out of the car. Eager to distance herself from the filthy bird, Daugherty immediately set it down in the parking lot. Looking for a response, she poked it. The chicken fell over. According to Daugherty, “You could touch her eye and she wouldn’t even blink.” The crew had plenty of reservations, not the least of which was disease. But since the farm had no resident chickens whose health they needed to worry about, and since they were certainly in a better position to keep her than was Fellers, they let the sickly bird stay, and despite their less-thanpositive expectations for the pitiful-looking fowl, they decided to do their best to care for it. “We put her in the greenhouse to protect her from hawks…put in a bowl of water and a winter squash, and she didn’t touch it. She didn’t know what real food was. Didn’t recognize it,” said Daugherty. For the first couple of days, the disheveled and disoriented chicken hunkered under the protective cover of the greenhouse without eating a thing and barely moving. Then Daugherty decided to try something different. She scattered a little multi-

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Cover Story was awkward at first in trying to eat the berries that are a favorite of songbirds, but she soon learned to scratch at the berries to reveal the inner seed. What little Chicken Little didn’t know was that she was doing the farm a huge service, because unlike songbirds who spread the invasive plant when they eat the berries, then drop them in scat along power lines and fencerows, chickens are able to totally digest the seed so that it comes out as rich fertilizer, no longer viable for reproduction. As the chicken continued to gain strength, she started taking care of herself, too. For the first time they saw her preening—slowly transforming her previously caked feathers. “We didn’t clean her, but by the time she left here, she was beautiful and white,” Daugherty said with a proud smile. “She had cleaned herself up. Her beak was a mess though—all covered with dried squash.” I learned firsthand what a quick study the new mascot was on a visit to the farm in the middle of December. At the end of my stay, several of us chatted under an oak tree in the gravel parking lot. Chicken Little heard Daugherty’s distinctive laugh and came running over. She turned her head, pointing one of her eyes up at her companion. When Daugherty didn’t respond with an expected treat, Chicken Little just hung out with us. Surprised the chicken wasn’t scratching the ground for food, I asked Daugherty why her chicken wasn’t eating the smashed acorns that were all around us. “Too sour?” I speculated. “No. She just doesn’t know it’s food,” she responded with a chuckle. That was all I needed to hear. Kneeling down, I picked up a broken nut and crumbled it in my hand, which I then extended towards the chicken. After the same sideways look she had given Candice moments before, Chicken Little pecked the seed bits from my palm. I pointed to the ground to show her that there was more where that came from, but she just gave me that same look. Again, I crushed up a seed in my hand. After a few of these offers, I let Chicken Little see the nut, then dropped it at her feet. That was all it took. As she ate the one I presented, her little head jerked to one side and then the other as she began to recognize the smorgasbord at her feet. For the rest of our conversation in the parking lot, Chicken Little was fat and happy in acorn heaven. According to Houser, Chicken Little maintained her love for acorns. A few days after the acorn discovery, he pulled in the parking lot to see a flock of doves under that same oak tree, foraging for nuts. In the middle of them, one odd, white bird stood out, towering over the rest of the smaller gray birds. “She was one of the flock,” he said with a smile. Reflecting back on the relationship she forged with her companion, Daugherty commented that she “didn’t know chickens could understand like

“But he’s in Texas…” “Correct.” “But Chicken Little is right here in Chattanooga. It’s a feel-good story about one of your chickens, who got a new lease on life. I was hoping…” “Sir, you have to call Ray Atkinson His number is…” “But Ray Atkinson hasn’t met this chicken. It’s in Chattanooga. Perhaps you have. If I could just have a minute of your time…” “I’m sorry sir, but it is company policy.” “Pilgrim’s Pride has a company policy dictating that community interest stories about Chattanooga chickens can only be addressed by Ray Atkinson in Texas?” “That’s correct, sir.” “You won’t talk to me at all?” “No, sir. It’s Company Policy.” “Can we talk about…” “No, sir. We cannot talk about anything.” Perhaps it’s just as well that they wouldn’t talk to me. According to their web site, Pilgrim’s Pride has the capacity to process 45 million birds per week. Even if he had talked, I doubt he would have been able to tell me about one specific bird. After our non-conversation, I drove over to the intersection of Main and Broad, just a half block from where Fellers and Chicken Little first met. Looking at the flatbed trailers stacked with thousands of chickens in tiny, individual cages, I couldn’t help noticing how they all looked alarmingly like the white bird that was saved by Allison Fellers on that chilly morning in early December, and I remember something Fellers told me about how that little bird affected her. “I changed my route taking my son to school because I can’t stand to see the trucks with all those chickens packed together…” She was quiet for moment, then added, “They’re like children. They’re innocent. God made them to do certain things…scratch in the dirt and eat bugs.” Before driving away, I thought about how different Chicken Little looked after just a couple of weeks of good food and sunshine. Dying alone in the middle of the night, in a bucket of cold water is certainly a horrible death for a lovable bird that became the mascot of an urban farm, but at least this one bird out of 45 million found some redemption in her final days. It is certainly safe to assume that she was the only one of those millions who was loved enough to have an obituary. In an e-mail to friends and admirers of Chicken Little on the afternoon after her death, Joel Houser eulogized her this way: “After many trials and tribulations, Chicken Little succumbed to a bucket of water in the greenhouse. She was a tough chicken, full of personality, who loved company. After being raised by the devil, rescued by a woman in pajamas, she found herself in her later weeks. She may not have come to us a chicken, but she died a chicken.”

“As the chicken continued to gain strength, she started taking care of herself, too. For the first time they saw her preening—slowly transforming her previously caked feathers.”

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that… She learned the sound of my voice.” And Chicken Little didn’t just recognize her voice but “knew when she was being called.” Daugherty told me how they were out taking pictures of the farm in the snow, and she called Chicken Little so they could get a photograph of her. “As soon as she heard me call, she came running.” The next morning Daugherty stood in the door of the greenhouse, calling for a friend who didn’t answer. I called Pilgrim’s Pride in an attempt to learn the prehistory of Chicken Little. I wanted to ask them how she might have come to wandering around in the middle of Broad Street, covered in feces. I wondered how a chicken could live to maturity without learning what “real food was.” I had a lot of questions. My first call, to the corporate office in Texas, resulted in the voice mailbox of Ray Atkinson, where I left a message. I tried the local plant. “Hello. Pilgrim’s Pride.” “Hi, my name is Jim Pfitzer. I’m writing an article about a chicken…” “I’ll transfer you.” “Hello, Rick Bailey.” “Hi, my name is Jim Pfitzer. I’m writing an article about a chicken…” “I’m sorry, but you’ll have to call Ray Atkinson. I can give you his number.” “He’s in Texas, right?” “That’s right.” “But the chicken is in Chattanooga…” “I’m sorry, but you have to call Mr. Atkinson.”

March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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Life in the Noog

By Chuck Crowder

Me And The Suits Don’t Get Along S

omething I’ve noticed over the past couple of years is the lack of business suits being worn around town. I’m sure they sort of fell out of favor years ago in places like New York, but here in the ‘noog we’re just now getting the memo. It used to be that every man wore one of two different kinds of work attire—the white collar kind or the blue collar kind. The latter usually worked for the former. The white collar guys shook a lot of hands, ate a lot of lunch and signed a lot of documents that paved the way for how much crap the blue collar guys were going to have to put up with to actually get things done. Because, as everyone knows, it’s usually the blue collar guys who are left to do whatever the white collar guys think up. As the kid of a white collar guy, I vividly remember watching my dad tie his tie in the mirror each morning before grabbing his hard-sided Samsonite briefcase (which I never actually saw him open), kissing my mother good-bye and heading off for another day at “the office.” Contrary to popular culture, his wasn’t one of those clean-cut flannel, straight-leg, thin-tie with matching fedora kind of suits like TV’s Don Draper dons (no pun). No, in the seventies, “business” suits consisted of massively large print, 100 percent flammable double-knit polyester with bell-bottom pants and ties wide enough to virtually render a dress shirt unnecessary. When my dad returned home promptly at 5:15 in the afternoon to greet my mother in the kitchen where she was cooking dinner, his tie would

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always be loosened some to convey the image that obviously work was tough that day. Of course, while my dad was babysitting graphic designers and writers, my mom was left with two little hellions and three meals to cook. I always felt sorry for my dad for having to put the suit back on every Sunday morning for church after spending five of the other six says in it. I guess that’s why he wouldn’t wear anything but T-shirts and blue jeans on Saturdays—no matter what. I think that even if one of us had been up for a Grammy, Emmy, or even the Nobel Prize, if the ceremony happened on a Saturday he’d try to attend in the T-shirt without the oil stain on it. I always had a Sunday suit growing up. I kinda dug dressing up from time to time. Made me feel older. I’d always choose mine from the three-piece kid’s suit rack at Sears. Polyester, corduroy or even topstitch denim—it didn’t matter as long as there was a cool vest in there. By the time I was in college, suits

really fell out of favor with anyone other than those trying to make some sort of name for themselves outside of the fraternity house. There’s a 10-year period where I can’t remember owning a suit. I might have had a sport coat, but nothing matching for sure. Graduation time rolled around and I remember considering a suit once more for job interviews. But I had chosen advertising as my career path and had even worked in it for several of my college years, so I knew that the last thing a creative director wanted to see on a prospective copywriter was a suit and tie. Funky facial hair, wild shoes, cool nicknames—now that says creative. And even though now my day job is occupying a cube for one of the larger employers here in town, I still haven’t let my career dictate my wardrobe like back in the white and blue collar days. I wear things that I like, that may or may not look good on me, but are comfortable. And that’s what those creative types with the pencil-thin goatees have figured out—comfortable employees are happier and more productive. People who save lives or repair air conditioning systems still wear uniforms. But that’s just because they don’t want to get any gross substances on the clothes they would likely prefer to wear. Maybe that’s why me and the suits don’t get along. My generation has figured out that it’s not what you wear that makes you successful—it’s what’s between your ears that really counts.

“In the seventies, ‘business’ suits consisted of massively large print, 100 percent flammable double-knit polyester with bell-bottom pants and ties wide enough to virtually render a dress shirt unnecessary.”

Chuck Crowder is a local writer and general man about town. His opinions are just that. Everything expressed is loosely based on fact, and crap he hears people talking about. Take what you just read with a grain of salt, but pepper it in your thoughts. And be sure to check out his popular website www.thenoog.com

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March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

15


Music Calendar Thursday Spotlight

Mountain Heart Good ol’ bluegrass knows what’s real. $15 8 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market Street, (423) 267-4644. www.rhythm-brews.com

Thursday, March 18 Koji, A.N. Palamara, 100th and May, Anthems of a Broken Home 7 p.m. The Warehouse, 5716 Ringgold Rd., East Ridge. myspace.com/warehousetn Funktastic Four, Kevin Klein 7 p.m. Mudpie Restaurant, 12 Frazier Ave. (423) 267-9043. www.mudpierestaurant.com Mountain Heart 8 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. (423) 267-4644. www.rhythm-brews.com Open Mic 8 p.m. The Riverhouse, 224 Frazier Ave. (423) 752-0066. myspace.com/ theriverhousechattanooga Convertibull 9 p.m. The Palms at Hamilton, 6925 Shallowford Rd., #202. (423) 499-5055. www.thepalmsathamilton.com Open Mic 9 p.m. Market Street Tavern, 850 Market St. (423) 634-0260. www.marketstreettavern.com Channing Wilson 9 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Rd. (423) 499-9878. www.budssportsbar.com The Incredible Sandwich, Zan Teddy, Justin Kalk Orchestra 10 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400. www.myspace.com/jjsbohemia DJ ScubaSteve Fox and Hound Pub & Grille, 2040 Hamilton Place Blvd., #150. (423) 490-1200. DJ Lucky Lucky’s, 2536 Cummings Highway, (423) 825-5145.

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The Pulse | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | March 18, 2010

Friday Spotlight

Friday, March 19 Nick and the Dragonslayers 11:30 a.m. Mudpie Restaurant, 12 Frazier Ave. (423) 267-9043. www.mudpierestaurant.com Axiom, Failing the Fairest, TRL, Reach for the Stars, Covered in Scars 7 p.m. The Warehouse, 5716 Ringgold Rd., East Ridge. myspace.com/warehousetn A Night to Remember: BabyFace and Kevon Edmonds 7 p.m. Chattanooga Convention Center. (423) 265-0623. Overture for Rent 7:30 p.m. The Original Blue Orleans Restaurant, 3208 Amnicola Hwy. (423) 629-6538. Moonshoes Mumsy, The Hearts in Life, Sanity’s Edge, Kelly Lockman 7:30 p.m. Club Fathom, 412 Market Street (423) 757-0019. www.clubfathom.com Husky Burnette 8 p.m. Magoo’s Restaurant, 3658 Ringgold Road, East Ridge. (423) 867-1351. Karaoke 9 p.m. Mudpie Restaurant, 12 Frazier Ave. (423) 267-9043. www.mudpierestaurant.com Live Music 9 p.m. Market Street Tavern, 850 Market St. (423) 634-0260. www.marketstreettavern.com Mellow Down Easy 9 p.m. T-Roy’s Roadhouse, 724 Ashland Terrace. Downstream 10 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Rd. (423) 499-9878. www.budssportsbar.com Leo Schmied 10 p.m. Tremont Tavern, 1203 Hixson Pike. (423) 266-1996. www.tremonttavern.com Black Cat Moon 10 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Rd. (423) 499-9878. www.budssportsbar.com Peer Pressure 10 p.m. Club Fathom, 412 Market Street. (423) 757-0019. www.clubfathom.com

James Legg, Silver Lions 20/20, Oxford Cotton, Mark Holder 10 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400. www.myspace.com/jjsbohemia The Human Nature - Michael Jackson tribute 10 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. (423) 267-4644. www.rhythm-brews.com Chris and Reece 10 p.m. T-Bones Café, 1419 Chestnut Ave. (423) 266-4240. www.tboneschattanooga.com DJ Spicolli Raw Sushi Bar Restaurant & Nightclub, 409 Market Street, (423) 756-1919. www.myspace.com/jimstriker DJ GOP The Palms at Hamilton, 6925 Shallowford Rd., #202. (423) 499-5055. www.thepalmsathamilton.com

Saturday, March 20 Great Southern Old Time Fiddler’s Convention 3 p.m. Lindsay Street Hall, 901 Lindsay St. (423) 755-9111 www.lindsaystreethall.com Faretheewell, Epic Romance, Feed the Lions, Questions for a Scientist 7 p.m. The Warehouse, 5716 Ringgold Rd., East Ridge. Tripping Lily 8 p.m. Charles & Myrtle’s Coffeehouse, 105 McBrien Rd. (423) 892-4960. wwwchristunity.org New Death Sensation, Declare your Victory, Permillisecond, Failing the Fairest 7:30 p.m. Club Fathom, 412 Market Street (423) 757-0019. Husky Burnette 8 p.m. Paddy’s Pub and Grill, 5603 Hixson Pike. (423) 843-2658. Bloody Sacrifice, Apocalyptic Visions, Double Barrel Democracy 8 p.m. Ziggy’s Hideaway, 607 Cherokee Blvd. (423) 634-1074.

James Legg, Silver Lions 20/20, Oxford Cotton, Mark Holder Rocking out all over at JJ’s. $7 10 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400. www.myspace.com/jjsbohemia Open Mic 9 p.m. Mudpie Restaurant, 12 Frazier Ave. (423) 267-9043. www.mudpierestaurant.com Live Music 9 p.m. Market Street Tavern, 850 Market St. (423) 634-0260. www.marketstreettavern.com A.J. Valcarel and The Bitter Lesson 9 p.m. Riverhouse Pub, 224 Frazier Ave. (423) 752-0066. Mac Comer 10 p.m. T-Bones Café, 1419 Chestnut Ave. (423) 266-4240. www.tboneschattanooga.com Live Music 10 p.m. Tremont Tavern, 1203 Hixson Pike. (423) 266-1996. www.tremonttavern.com The Whiskey Gentry, Gerle Haggard 10 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400. www.myspace.com/jjsbohemia Eoto, Vibesquad, Archnemesis, Whitenoise 10 p.m. Club Fathom, 412 Market Street (423) 757-0019. www.clubfathom.com The Molly Maguires 10 p.m. T-Bones Café, 1419 Chestnut Ave. (423) 266-4240. www.tboneschattanooga.com Abbey Road Live 10 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. (423) 267-4644. www.rhythm-brews.com Downstream 10 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Rd. (423) 499-9878. www.budssportsbar.com DJ Spicolli Raw Sushi Bar Restaurant & Nightclub, 409 Market Street, (423) 756-1919.

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Music Calendar

Send your calendar events to us at calendar@chattanoogapulse.com

Saturday Spotlight

Tripping Lily Folk meets rock meets ukelele. $10 8 p.m. Charles and Myrtle’s Coffeehouse, 105 McBrien Rd. (423) 892-2960. www.christunity.org DJ GOP The Palms at Hamilton, 6925 Shallowford Rd., #202. (423) 499-5055. www.thepalmsathamilton.com

Sunday, March 21 Open Mic w/Jeff Daniels 4 p.m. Ms. Debbie’s Nightlife Lounge 4762 Highway 58, (423) 485-0966. myspace.com/debbieslounge Chattanooga Blues Festival 6 p.m. Memorial Auditorium, 399 McCallie Avenue. (423) 642-TIXS. www.chattanoogaonstage.com Irish Sessions Music 6:30 p.m. Tremont Tavern, 1203 Hixson Pike. (423) 266-1996. www.tremonttavern.com Rick Rushing and the Blues Strangers 6:30 p.m. Mudpie Restaurant, 12 Frazier Ave. (423) 267-9043. www.mudpierestaurant.com Open Mic 8 p.m. Gene’s Bar & Grill, 724 Ashland Terrace, (423) 870-0880. myspace.com/genem14 Tea Leaf Green, Moon Taxi 9 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. (423) 267-4644. www.rhythm-brews.com Today the Moon, Tomorrow the Sun, Wintersounds 10 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400. www.myspace.com/jjsbohemia DJ GOP The Palms at Hamilton, 6925 Shallowford Rd., #202. (423) 499-5055. www.thepalmsathamilton.com

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Sunday Spotlight

Monday, March 22 Old Tyme Players 6 p.m. Market Street Tavern, 850 Market St. (423) 634-0260. Jeremy Aggers 7 p.m. Pasha Coffee and Tea, 3914 St. Elmo Avenue, Suite 1. (423) 475-5492. Born of Osiris, Your Demise, Every Word a Prophecy, Permillisecond 7 p.m. The Warehouse, 5716 Ringgold Rd., East Ridge. myspace.com/warehousetn Paul Longhorn’s 18 Piece Big Band 7:30 p.m. Lindsay Street Hall, 901 Lindsay St. (423) 755-9111 Karaoke 9:30 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Rd. (423) 499-9878. www.budssportsbar.com

Dancing & DJing The Palms at Hamilton 6925 Shallowford Rd., #202. (423) 499-5055. www.thepalmsathamilton.com

Tuesday, March 23 Troy Underwood 6:30 p.m. Mudpie Restaurant, 12 Frazier Ave. (423) 267-9043. www.mudpierestaurant.com The Ben Friberg Trio 7 p.m. Table 2, 232 E. 11th Street, (423) 756-8253. www.table2restaurant.com Spoken Word/Poetry Night 8 p.m. The Riverhouse, 224 Frazier Ave., (423) 752-0066. www.myspace.com/ theriverhousechattanooga Open Mic 9 p.m. Tremont Tavern, 1203 Hixson Pike. (423) 266-1996. www.tremonttavern.com

Editor’s Pick of the Week

Pnuma Trio, Break Science Pnuma Trio makes its way back to Chatt-town and they brought Break Science with them! These two hot experimental electronic bands are tag teaming to bring you some mixes you won’t catch again for a long while. Wednesday, March 24 $15 9:30 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. (423) 267-4644. www.rhythm-brews.com

Moon Taxi, Tea Leaf Green Not-a-jam-band Moon Taxi drives a night a R&B. $15 9 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. (423) 267-4644. www.rhythm-brews.com Karaoke 9:30 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Rd. (423) 499-9878. www.budssportsbar.com The Woes, Ian Thomas, Joshua Panda Band 10 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400. www.myspace.com/jjsbohemia DJ ScubaSteve Fox and Hound Pub & Grille, 2040 Hamilton Place Blvd., #150, (423) 490-1200.

Wednesday, March 24 Ben Friberg Jazz Trio 6:30 p.m. Market Street Tavern, 850 Market Street, (423) 634-0260. www.marketstreettavern.com Jenn Franklin 7 p.m. Mudpie Restaurant, 12 Frazier Ave. (423) 267-9043. www.mudpierestaurant.com Nathan Farrow Band 9 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Rd. (423) 499-9878. www.budssportsbar.com Pnuma Trio, Break Science 9:30 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. (423) 267-4644. www.rhythm-brews.com Johnston Brown 10 p.m. The Palms at Hamilton, 6925 Shallowford Rd., #202. (423) 499-5055. www.thepalmsathamilton.com Finn Riggins, Serious Sam, Mark Holder 10 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400. www.myspace.com/jjsbohemia James Legs and guests 10 p.m. Discoteca, 309 Main Street.

March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

17


Music Feature

By Hellcat

Don’t Stash the ’Stache I

f you don’t already know about Moustache Friday, then I don’t know where you’ve been hiding the last few years. I suppose I can let it slide, provided that you don’t let it happen again. Moustache Friday is a little local holiday that started about five years ago. It is the last Friday in March every year. The holiday serves three purposes. Purpose one is about America. It’s the God-given right of a man, nay, an American man, to have a moustache. Embrace this freedom. Feel it on your face. Taste yesterday’s soup from your upper lip, and know that you, sir, are a man. It can wordlessly say so much about a man by giving you a follicle-sized window into their soul. In fact, through the ages, the military of several countries have used the size and style of a man’s moustache to indicate rank among them. Lesser men had lesser moustaches, while the more elaborate and majestic moustaches were reserved for men more advanced in rank. “Moustache” the word, is derived from the 9thcentury medieval Greek term “moustakion” and the spelling I use is the proper spelling settled upon by the French in the 16th century. There are several more general or casual spellings that are also accepted. The first depiction of the moustache in art, as included in this article, was from 300 BCE, which proves that as soon as Stone Age technology permitted men to “man-scape” their faces, they were sporting the ‘stache. Why wouldn’t you? Would you pluck a peacock’s feathers? No? Then why wouldn’t you grow out your moustache and revel in its true glory? Be a man—grow a moustache. This brings us to the second purpose of the holiday, which is to be a man and celebrate your manliness. Having a moustache tells you that you can in fact work the same job as your wife and have the same qualifications, but you get paid more...on account of the ‘stache. If you are a clean-shaven man, then you

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get paid more because you could potentially grow a moustache and no one needs a moustache grown out of anger. It’s not good for anyone. I know, I know, some women can grow moustaches but those women are those that we must never speak of. There is always a bar having a “Ladies Night” regardless of what night it is. Men, unfortunately, do not get these perks. There is no daring neckline low enough, nor enough sway in a swagger that will get men free drinks or even free admittance to our local hot spots. I thought it quite fair to designate at least one night a year to the man. The man’s man. The man who selflessly shaves his face every morning for you women out there. The man who has to shave twice a day, because he is just so much of a man that his moustache won’t be quieted. This is a man, and these men need to be celebrated. Now, if growing a regular moustache isn’t magical enough for you; you are in luck. There just so happens to be a vast multitude of styles to choose from: Natural: Styled without aids Hungarian: Big and bushy, beginning from middle of the upper lip and pulled to the side Dali: Narrow, long points bent or curved drastically upward English: Narrow, beginning at the middle of the upper lip, the whiskers are long and pulled to the side, slight curl, the ends pointed upward Imperial: Whiskers growing from both the upper lip and cheeks, curled upwards Fu Manchu: Long, downward pointing ends, generally beyond the chin Handlebar: Bushy, with small upward pointing ends Horseshoe: Popularized by cowboys, a full moustache with vertical extensions from the corners of the lips down to the jawline, also known as the “biker” Pencil: Narrow, straight and thin as if drawn on,

outlining the upper lip, with wide-shaven gap between nose and ‘stache Chevron: Thick and wide, covers the top of upper lip, as seen on most cops. Toothbrush: Thick, but shaved except for about an inch in the center, think Hitler or Chaplin Walrus: Bushy, hanging down over the lips, often entirely covering mouth. The GG: Bushy hair grown only over the corners of mouth, shaved in the middle. GG Allin’s style lends the name, but Genghis Khan wore a longer version. The third purpose for this holiday is to have yet another reason to drink, and here are the fine establishments that will be supporting you in all of your manliness. Please remember, these specials only apply to dudes that have grown staches. If you have a beard, it doesn’t count. It must be a stache. I am sure some of our moustache mafia will be armed with electric shavers and will be more than happy to help you out. All rule breakers are subject to street fights. • Northshore Grill: $2 Domestic Pints • Midtown: $2 Domestic Bottles • Raw: $3 Jager Shots • Coltrane’s on 9th: $5 Long Island Tea • Tremont Tavern: $1.50 PBR Tallboys • Market St. Tavern: $1 ‘Stache Shots (Hunch Punch) • Parkway Billiards: $3 Parkway Punch Shooters • Pickle Barrel: $5 ’Stache Dusters • The Terminal:TBA • Hair of the Dog: TBA

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New Music Reviews Four Tet There Is Love in You (Domino)

“Four Tet appealed to listeners who sought a more mentallystimulating kind of music, with multiple forces at work and an avoidance of formulas.”

Saturday Looks Good to Me Love Will Find You (Polyvinyl) Several early tracks by the Ypsilanti, Michigan ensemble Saturday Looks Good to Me sound like they could be lost, obscure gems from the ’60s, owing much to the band’s often lowfidelity, yet carefully crafted recording style and front man Fred Thomas’s admiration for the work of pop music figures such as Brian Wilson and Phil Spector. Actually, within the catalog of Saturday Looks Good to Me, Love Will

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It’s commonly said that Four Tet, Kieran Hebden’s one-man band, is an electronic outfit that’s difficult to classify. Hebden has a huge arsenal of samples and rhythm loops, and he arranges, overlays, and wrangles them in non-obvious ways to avoid any neat genre classification. While typical dance-oriented music has a first-and-foremost aim of invoking a compulsory physical reaction, Four Tet appealed to listeners who sought a more mentally-stimulating kind of music, with multiple forces at work and an avoidance of formulas. It was slightly odd, then, to hear the Ringer EP from 2008, which had a more outwardly dance sheen and insistent, driving beats. There Is Love in You is Four Tet’s latest album and first proper full-length since 2005’s Everything Ecstatic; it continues in the direction of Ringer, traveling down minimalist pathways with glitchy sonic elements strewn along the way. Four Tet often uses vocal samples, but they’re mostly utilized to shape sound textures, rather than providing any anthemic, strong vocal hooks. For example, one track uses an obscured, faintly audible Chiffons vocal sample, and the title of “Love Cry” is sung in a wistful, soulful manner and looped so that it builds upon the song’s pulse. The album’s opener, “Angel Echoes,” is ear-catching, using cut-up vocal snippets with abrupt edits, making it sound like the CD is skipping, but in perfect rhythm with the beat. “Circling” features a typically wide variety of timbres and sounds, with a nylon-string guitar pattern,

sparkling glockenspiel notes, bubbling electronics, and backwards vocal fragments; the title of “This Unfolds” describes its own increasingly busy approach, with chiming melodies and seemingly random, possibly twelvetone synthetics. There Is Love in You presents Four Tet at its most cohesive and entrancing, but I wouldn’t say it’s a step forward. A track like “Sing,” with chopped pure tones, might have been a revelatory dance number a dozen years ago, but it wouldn’t be so distinguished today. It would be wrong to define this album just in terms of instruments and sounds, since its flow is a vital aspect; it reveals Four Tet as being more hypnotic and less cerebral, fluttering at the edges of dance music conventions. — Ernie Paik

Find You was itself pretty much a lost release. It was originally issued in 2002 on Whistletap Records in a batch of just 100 CD-Rs, and it was overshadowed by the albums which preceded and followed it, Saturday Looks Good to Me and All Your Summer Songs respectively—the band’s finest albums. About half of it showed up on the singles/rarities compilation Sound on Sound, but now Polyvinyl Records has given the whole album a new life as a digital download, replacing the old mono mix (done surely as a tribute to both Wilson and Spector) with a stereo mix; while it’s not the best starting place for newcomers, fans will be glad it was unearthed. Three tracks were re-recorded for later higher-fidelity releases on Polyvinyl, and although there are a few lyrical and arrangement changes between the versions, the ones presented here are fleshed out well, not sounding

like any bare-bones demos. Lead vocals are primarily handled by Thomas and Erika Hoffmann (member of Godzuki and occasional singer for His Name Is Alive), who sings with an unadorned, yet pretty and easy-going style. Thomas is unabashedly nostalgic, channeling decades-old, organ-enhanced soul balladry on the title track, and the twin tracks “Liquor Store” and “Record Store” have a distinctive Beach Boys flavor, with irregular, treble-heavy snare drum hits that serve as one of the band’s trademarks. Love Will Find You doesn’t quite have as many epic pop moments as other Saturday Looks Good to Me albums; however, it features a healthy batch of durable songs, and as best demonstrated on the closing track—a rousing cover of “I Get So Excited” by Eddy Grant’s ’60s band, the Equals—it has a striking, often irresistible sonic exuberance. — Ernie Paik

March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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Film Feature

Stop-Motion Surreal Silliness

By Philip Johnston

“…the nostalgia of the toy box along with pastoral settings instantly disrupted by rock ‘n’ roll sensibilities, absurd dialogue, and a profoundly silly delivery.”

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R

arely do the words “fun for the whole family” and “Arts and Education Council Independent Film Series” go together—but there’s always room for an exception. This week’s selection, A Town Called Panic, is a stop-motion animated film from Belgium based on a television show brought to the small screen by the same people responsible for Wallace and Gromit (whom you may have seen make an appearance at this year’s Oscars). A Town Called Panic is a surreal adventure “for children from eight to eighty” starring three plastic toys: Cowboy, Indian, and Horse. The premise is simple: Cowboy and Indian plan to give horse a homemade barbeque

pit for his birthday, but their plan backfires when they accidentally order 50 million bricks. This is just the first in many mishaps that take the trio to the frozen tundra, a parallel universe under the water, and even to the very center of the earth. The cast of “Panic” first appeared in a popular series of short films that were eventually translated into English and aired on Nickelodeon (think Gumby crossed with Monty Python). The feature-length version of A Town Called Panic playing at the Majestic this week had the rare privilege of being accepted into last year’s Cannes Film Festival along with Disney/Pixar’s UP!. Nevertheless, the film has the distinction of being the only stopmotion film ever to screen at the worlds biggest film festival. The team behind A Town Called Panic has made an art form out of their distinctive approach to comedy and animation. The cast is comprised exclusively of the most basic children’s toys. You’ll find no detailed renderings of Mr. Potato Head here a la Toy Story, but you’ll still find the nostalgia of the toy box along with pastoral settings instantly disrupted by rock ‘n’ roll sensibilities, absurd dialogue, and a profoundly silly delivery that makes every character sound like they’ve just siphoned all the helium out of a birthday balloon into their lungs. In essence, A Town Called Panic is unlike any animated vision you’ve ever seen. The film has two directors, Stéphane Aubier and Vincent Patar, who met at a Belgian art academy in the 1980s. When asked about the inspiration for their unique brand of zany comedy, Patar said it comes from anything the duo sees and finds amusing. “It’s the little details of

daily life that nourish our work,” he says. “What you see in A Town Called Panic is a good indication of what we’ve always set out to do. By using a relatively simple setting and a standard but versatile technique, we have the total freedom to create a world of our own.” The simple-looking Cowboy, Indian, and Horse inhabit the world Aubier and Patar have created and Patar said they found inspiration for these characters almost by accident. “We hit on the idea while visiting flea markets and garage sales on Sundays,” he said. “Because dinosaurs and the figurines from manga comics were all the rage, kids had lost interest in older, basic toys like cowboys and Indians and farm animals. So we decided to rescue these poor orphans—and there sure were a lot of them. The origins are as silly as that!” Aubier added that Cowboy and Indian essentially had to cooperate with each other since they were stuck together in the toy chest. Though the humor of A Town Called Panic won’t be lost on Americans, the directors note that it does have a distinctly Belgian flare. Patar muses on what aliens might think if they found the duo’s films in the ruins of human civilization: “If these aliens found our films, we think they’d assume we’re slightly retarded or else absolute geniuses. Obviously, their interpretation would depend on how intelligent and sophisticated they are.” And there you have it. A Town Called Panic is playing at the Majestic this week (along with last week’s compelling AEC pick Police, Adjective) and it is not to be missed.

A Town Called Panic (part of the AEC Independent Film Series) Directed by Stéphane Aubier and Vincent Patar Not rated Running time: 75 minutes

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New in Theaters The Bounty Hunter There is a moment that occurs in, sadly, far too many romantic comedies where the audience sits back and rolls their eyes at one plot hole too many. Luckily for The Bounty Hunter, the latest attempt by Jennifer Aniston to make herself a legitimate rom-com star, the plot is the least important thing in the film. Anniston and Gerard Butler, who inhabits the macho heman role to a well-fitted T, are in this film simply because they are attractive, able professional actors who could probably play the love-hate-love plot progression in their sleep. The basic premise of the film is that Butler is a bounty hunter who has to capture his ex-wife, who then escapes and tries to solve a murder. Sadly, that’s the most coherent and believable part of the plot (we won’t even get into the Vegas “let’s turn $500 into $10,000 at the craps table and then I’ll take off my shirt” moment with Butler). However, the modern rom-com is less and less about the actual story and more about watching attractive people trade witty banter and overcome the obstacles thrown at them to rediscover their true love. Both Anniston and Butler are high up on the attractive scale, and have an amiable chemistry, so if you

are looking for some light escapism at the theater this weekend or need a good choice for a date movie, you shouldn’t be disappointed. Just don’t except anything more substantial than cinematic cotton candy that will be forgotten soon thereafter. Starring: Gerard Butler, Jennifer Aniston Director: Andy Tennant Rating: PG-13

Also in Theaters Diary of a Wimpy Kid (New) Greg Heffley, a wisecracking, undersized middle-school weakling, must navigate and survive the travails of an academic year. Repo Men (New) Jude Law is a futuristic repo men who fails to make heart transplant payments, and must go on the run from his former partner. Hubble 3D (New at IMAX) A 3-D journey with space-walking astronauts as they attempt the most difficult and important tasks in NASA’s history. Green Zone Matt Damon is a rogue U.S. Army officer hunting through covert and faulty intelligence before war escalates in an unstable region. She’s Out of My League Against all odds, an outrageously gorgeous girl falls for an average Joe, much to everyone’s surprise—including his own. Remember Me

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Robert Pattinson and Emilie De Ravin are star-crossed lovers who struggle to deal with family tragedies that threaten their relationship. Alice in Wonderland Director Tim Burton takes on the whimsical world of Alice, who embarks on a fantastical journey to find her true destiny. Brooklyn’s Finest Richard Gere, Don Cheadle and Ethan Hawke are NYPD cops caught up in the violence and corruption of the gritty 65th Precinct. The Secret of Kells An animated retelling of the provenance of one of Ireland’s most cherished artifacts, the ancient and magical Book of Kells. Cop Out Bruce Willis and Tracy Morgan are NYPD partners who find themselves up against a merciless, memorabiliaobsessed gangster. The Crazies A picture-perfect American town is infected with a mysterious toxin that

Solution To Last Week’s Puzzle transforms the population into blood-thirsty killers. Shutter Island Leonardo DiCaprio is a U.S. marshall investigating a murderer’s mysterious disappearance from a hospital for the criminally insane. The Good Guy An ambitious young New Yorker wants it all: a good job, good friends and— often the trickiest of all—a good guy. The Ghost Writer A writer agrees to complete the memoirs of the former prime minister, only to uncover some dark, dangerous secrets. Celine: Through the Eyes of the World Celine Dion travels to five continents and 25 countries, putting on showstopping performances of some of her biggest hits. The Wolfman Benicio Del Toro stars in the terrifying tale of an ancient, evil curse that turns the afflicted into werewolves when the moon is full.

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On The Beat

By Alex Teach

Holidays of March A

llow me to say first that, despite anonymous urging, I am not ready to write about That Thing just yet. Despite all the public and private correspondence, I was too close to It, too enraged by It to write about It when It occurred, but it has since been nearly adjudicated, and I am in fact nearly ready. And still quite upset. As you well know by now, however, I never write when I am upset. And thus I doubt it. (A joke, you bleary-eyed It waits for at least another week. Micks. Settle down and roll your So given the calendar date, you probably expect me to talk about Saint Patrick’s Day: The second-most celebrated holiday in all of Drunkendom for debauchery and hedonism, after New Years Eve; a night in which every man feels he is just Irish enough to pop his wife in the eye after a long night of drunk driving, and every wife feels she is just Irish enough to do…whatever it is Irish women do outside of working as prostitutes and washing laundry in troughs as depicted in cinema set in the 16th to 18th centuries. (I live in the Southeastern United States and have seen no other evidence of what it is such women do; blame the arts if you think me an “arse”, whatever the hell that is in “American”.) Outside of the above, I have no real opinion of St. Patrick’s Day other than the appreciation of the irony that he was never actually canonized by a pope, making it as legitimate a holiday for drinking to excess as Groundhog’s Day or Fire Prevention Week. Come to think of it though, I’ve never bothered legitimizing any other day I drank to excess myself…so maybe I’m just Irish too? I don’t stink like a brewery below a brothel at the moment though, so

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glazed-over eyes elsewhere.) No. This week, I’m more tempted to write about the stabbing of Caesar on the Ides of March (March 15) than I am about a forgotten non-saint... someone in history that died as they looked into the unexpected treachery of their unexpected killers’ eyes. Yet still, I do not put pen to paper (or finger to keyboard) about him despite the treachery I see and feel. This week, I write about a nearly unknown man by the name of Aleksei Leonev. Not a cop, not even an American…but a man who on March 18 of 1965 was the first human being to turn the handle on a hatch and step into the vacuum of space. Imagine the isolation and fear of turning that handle and stepping into a void literally larger than the imagination. Stepping into nowhere and onto nothing for the first time. Floating on a tether and seeing the whole of creation below you, and about you, and the loneliness of that choice and the wonder if you’d make it back. A far cry from my own job working the projects on midnight shift, but a distant cousin nonetheless. Isolation. Fear. Confidence. All at

once. Most people don’t know it (much less his name), but after 12 minutes in space, when he finally got back to his Voskhod 2 spacecraft, his suit had inflated to the point where he could no longer re-enter the airlock. Forget about your lack of interest in science fiction; can you imagine that? He actually had to float there in a vacuum for the first time in history, hundreds of miles above Earth, and had to open a freakin’ valve in his space suit by hand long enough to allow pressure to bleed off enough to fit back into the capsule. (And you thought waiting on a home pregnancy test or a court verdict was a “long, tense time”. Amazing.) Like I said… little to do with police work per se—but isn’t it, really? One man in a suit, under scrutiny, floating alone in a vacuum trying to keep his wits, only to find the simple task of returning home filled with mortal doubt and fear. And guts. Lots of guts. Yeah, I think it’s related, however distant and presumptuous. We all feel alone, some more than others…but there are those willing to take that first step onto nothing, into nothingness. And then there are those that will do it night after night, no matter the isolation, the fear. Thanks, folks. Unlike Aleksei, some of you never made it back, but most of you do it despite this knowledge. So… thanks. It gives the rest of us fools the courage to do the same, despite the treachery and debauchery of the other “holidays”. (Aleksei Leonev is still alive at age 75, by the way. Give him a thought, and all the other handles into the unknown folks turn alone, night after night.) For the rest of my customers? “Single Parents Day” is on the 21st. Look it up.

“We all feel alone, some more than others… but there are those willing to take that first step onto nothing, into nothingness.”

When officer Alexander D. Teach is not patrolling our fair city on the heels of the criminal element, he is an occasional student at UTC, an up and coming carpenter, auto mechanic, prominent boating enthusiast, and spends his spare time volunteering for the Boehm Birth Defects Center.

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March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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Arts & Entertainment

Chattanooga’s Gone to Fiddlin’

By Stephanie Smith

“A lot of what

you hear on radio—I can’t imagine it being around 100 years down the road like this music is.”

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I wanna hear an old-time fiddle / Like you never get to hear anymore. — Vince Gill, “Old Time Fiddle” Fiddlin’s a funny thing. A concert violin sings a polished melody, while a fiddle warbles a raw tune. That raw, inimitable sound quality only associated with an old-time fiddle is almost nonexistent in modern times, even though it is a staple of the American musical repertoire. Like Vince Gill says, you never hear it anymore. Well, that’s about to change. The Great Southern Old Time Fiddlers’ Convention begins a new chapter in Chattanooga history by reviving a tradition that began in the Scenic City back in 1925. Stephanie Smith interviewed Matt Downer, organizer of the event. Stephanie Smith: Why did you decide to produce this event? Matt Downer: My original intent was to revive interest in old-time fiddling music in this area. A long time ago I

started playing with the band Citico, which was the only band [making old-time music] at the time. One of those guys, Ken Par, put together Chattanooga Times articles from 1925 to 1929 that documented that music scene; I wasn’t aware of history of it all until Ken exposed me to it. SS: Do you think that this might be a difficult time for the convention economically? MD: It’s a good time to do it now because a lot of people got through the first Great Depression with it! SS: Talk to me about the music scene in the 1920s. What are you trying to recreate from that time? MD: Jazz was taking off and a lot of people thought that’d be the end of fiddle music all over south. Henry Ford toured with a fiddle player—Mellie Dunham from Maine—and took him all over the country and hyped him up as the best fiddle player [at that time]. Local and regional fiddlers had been a source of regional pride and Southerners didn’t take to kindly to a guy from Maine holding the claim as best fiddler player. There was an original contest in December of 1925 to find a winner who would go up to challenge Mellie. Locally, The Chattanooga Boys—fiddlers—had a great recording career; the Allen Brothers were one of the few groups you could call virtuoso kazoo players. And The Skillet Lickers lived here and they were the most recorded artists of the time. SS: Talk to me about the local music scene now—how do you feel about how it’s popped up? MD: The appreciation for old-timey music has grown leaps and bounds over past years. Young folks are now

interested in the old-timey music. There are an excellent number of old-time fiddlers in this area right now. This music is known around the world; to be able to have it in your hometown is really special. SS: What does the Lindsay Street Hall sound like acoustically? MD: It’s a 130-year-old church; Keith, Ken and Kenneth Crisp were renovating [the space] for years and now acoustically it’s a good place to be. Sometimes it’s hard [to perform without amplification], but when you have a space that’s made for that it’s perfect. SS: Tell me more about the event. MD: Contests will be held with cash prizes for the top three performers, awarded in the following old-time categories: fiddle, banjo, dance and string band. We’ll start at 3 p.m. and go continuously until 11 p.m.—that’s a rough estimate. There will always be either a band performing [Citico, Matt Kinman, Mick Kinney and the Roan Mountain Hilltoppers] or a contest going on. And food and drinks will be available. SS: Why is this event important? MD: A lot of what you hear on radio—I can’t imagine it being around 100 years down the road like this music is. It’s timeless; it crosses socio, economic, race boundaries. There was a group here, Andrew and Jim Baxter, African Americans who recorded with the Georgia Yellow Hammers. One of the neat things about music, specifically this kind of music, is that it can wipe away any kind of lines and unite people. [This event] is something for Chattanooga to embrace and build on from now on.

Great Southern Old Time Fiddlers’ Convention $5, 3 p.m. Saturday, March 20 Lindsay Street Hall, 901 Lindsay Street (423) 755-9111.

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A&E Calendar Highlights Friday

Thursday

Peter Pan Humble Swan’s production of the beloved Barrie story. $8 - $26.50 7:30 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad Street (423) 642-8497. www.chattanoogaonstage.com

Send your calendar events to us at calendar@chattanoogapulse.com

AEC Spring Independent Film Series: That Evening Sun 1, 4, 7, 10 p.m. Majestic 12, 311 Broad St. (423) 826-2370. AEC Spring Independent Film Series: Police, Adjective 1:15, 4:15, 7:15, 9:55 p.m. Majestic 12, 311 Broad St. (423) 826-2370. “Water on the Rocks: Waterscape Photography” 6 p.m. 12 W. 13th St. (321) 279-2912. www.waterontherocksart.com “Imaging Identity” Lecture 6:30 p.m. Hunter Museum of American Art, 10 Bluff View. (423) 266-0944. www.huntermuseum.org Mystery of the TV Talk Show 7 p.m. Vaudeville Café, 138 Market St. (423) 517-1839. www.funnydinner.com

Cosi Fan Tutte Mozart’s opera presented by the UTC Opera Theater. $10 7:30 p.m. Roland Hayes Concert Hall, UTC Fine Arts Building, Vine & Palmetto Sts. (423) 425-4269.

Saturday

Great Southern Old-Time Fiddler Convention Fiddlin’ returns to its roots. (See feature story) $5 3 – 11 p.m. Lindsay Street Hall, 901 Lindsay Street. (423) 755-9111.

Monday Master Class: “Negro Spirituals” Noon. Lindsay St. Hall, 901 Lindsay St. (423) 755-9111. Southern Literature Book Club: Gap Creek 6 p.m. Rock Point Books, 401 Broad St. (423) 504-0638. www.rockpointbooks.com “Recitation II” 7 p.m. McKee Library, Southern Adventist University, 4881 Taylor Cir. (423) 236-2791. “Speak Easy” Spoken word and poetry 8 p.m. Mudpie Restaurant, 12 Frazier Ave. (423) 267-9040. www.mudpierestaurant.com “Still Lifes from the Permanent Collection” Hunter Museum of American Art, 10 Bluff View. (423) 266-0944. www.huntermuseum.org

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Hubble in 3D 11 a.m., 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 p.m. IMAX Theater, 1 Broad St. (800) 265-0695. www.tnaqua.org/imax Peter Pan 1 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 757-5050. www.chattanoogaonstage.com Palate 2 Palette Arts Event 5 p.m. Art Galleries on the Southside. (423) 778-9176. www.palate2palette.org “Recent Landscapes: Lawerence Mathis” Opening Reception 5:30 p.m. Tanner Hill Warehouse Row Project Space, 1110 Market St. (423) 280-7182. Café Game Night 6 p.m. Pasha Coffeehouse, 3914 St. Elmo Ave. (423) 475-5482. www.pashacoffeehouse.com

High Lonesome: The Story of Bluegrass Music 7 p.m. Mountain Music Folk School, 250 Forest Ave. (423) 827-8906. www.mmfolk.com Cosi Fan Tutte 7:30 p.m. Roland Hayes Concert Hall, UTC Fine Arts Center, 753 Vine St. (423) 425-4269. Delirum of Interpertation 7:30 p.m. St. Andrews Center Theater, 1918 Union Ave. (423) 987-5141. Mike Speenburg 7:30, 10 p.m. The Comedy Catch & Giggles Grille, 3224 Brainerd Rd. (423) 629-2233. www.thecomedycatch.com Peter Pan 7:30 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 757-5050. www.chattanoogaonstage.com

Sunday Mosaic Market 11 a.m. 412 Market St. (corner of 4th/Market) (423) 624-3915. This is Not a Pipe Dream 11 a.m., 1 p.m. St. Andrews Center Theater, 1918 Union Ave. (423) 987-5141. Hubble in 3D 11 a.m., 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 p.m. IMAX Theater, 1 Broad St. (800) 265-0695. Peter Pan 1 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 757-5050. www.chattanoogaonstage.com New Voices Poetry Reading 6 p.m. Pasha Coffeehouse, 3914 St. Elmo Ave. (423) 475-5482. www.pashacoffeehouse.com Mystery of the Nightmare High School Reunion 6 p.m. Vaudeville Café, 138 Market St. (423) 517-1839.

Cosi Fan Tutte 7:30 p.m. Roland Hayes Concert Hall, UTC Fine Arts Center, 753 Vine St. (423) 425-4269. Mike Speenburg 7:30, 10 p.m. The Comedy Catch & Giggles Grille, 3224 Brainerd Rd. (423) 629-2233. Mystery of the Red Neck Italian Wedding 8:30 p.m. Vaudeville Café, 138 Market St. (423) 517-1839. www.funnydinner.com “Talk Portraiture” Shuptrine Fine Art Group, 2646 Broad St. 423-266-4453. Vicki Daniel White Studio 2/Gallery 2, 27 W. Main St. (423) 266-2222. “Themes of Identity” Hunter Museum of American Art, 10 Bluff View. (423) 266-0944. www.huntermuseum.org

Tuesday

Wednesday

“Presidential Concert Series”: Pianist Fabio Bidini 7:30 p.m. Dixon Center, Lee University, 1120 N. Ocoee St. (423) 614-8343. “400 Years of Keyboard Improvisation” 7:30 p.m. Roland Hayes Concert Hall, UTC Fine Arts Center, 753 Vine St. (423) 425-4269. “Scenes from a Native Land” Bill Shores Frame and Gallery, 307 Manufacturers Rd. (423) 756-6746. “More than Words” River Gallery, 400 E. Second St. (423) 265-5033. www.river-gallery.com Daniel Liam Gill and Sandra Shannon Exhibition My Color Image Boutique and Art Gallery, 330 Frazier St. (423) 598-6202.

“Sister City” by Elizabeth Turbergen Association for Visual Arts, 30 Frazier Ave. (423) 265-4282. www.avarts.org “Eye of the Beholder” Asher Love Gallery, 3914 St. Elmo Ave. (423) 822-0289. asherlovegallery.blogspot.com “It’s A Jungle Out There” Lookout Mountain Gallery, 3535 Broad St. (423) 596-6622. www.lookoutmountaingallery.com “Landscape: A Southern Perspective” thru March 20 Gallery 1401, 1401 Williams St. (423) 265-0015. “Millennial Classicism: Recent Modern Monumental Oils” by Daniel Swanger Mosaic Gallery, 412 Market St. (423) 320-6738. www.mosaicchattnooga.com

Cosi Fan Tutte 3 p.m. Roland Hayes Concert Hall, UTC Fine Arts Center, 753 Vine St. (423) 425-4269. Delirum of Interpertation 3, 7:30 p.m. St. Andrews Center Theater, 1918 Union Ave. (423) 987-5141. “Capturing Individuality” 4 p.m. McKee Library, Southern Adventist University, 4881 Taylor Cir. (423) 236-2791. 4th Annual Lee Norris Mackey Memoria Concert 5 p.m. First Baptist Church, 401 Gateway Ave. (423) 892-1439. “A Suite Concert” 7:30 PM Collegedale Adventist Church, 4829 College Dr. E., Collegedale, TN. (423) 236-2880. Mike Speenburg 8 p.m. The Comedy Catch, 3224 Brainerd Rd. (423) 629-2233.

Sam Glaser Piano concert with top singer/songwriter. $10 4 p.m. Jewish Cultural Center, 5461 North Terrace. (423) 493-0270, ext. 13. www.jewishchattanooga.com

Editor’s Pick: Featured Event Of The Week

A Town Called Panic Continuing with the exceptionally fabulous AEC Independent Film Series, we highly recommend A Town Called Panic, the stop-motion animated film that is described as “A sort of Gallic Monty Python crossed with Art Clokey on acid… zany, brainy and altogether insane-y!” Perfect. Majestic Theatre, 215 Broad Street. (423) 265-5220. www.carmike.com

March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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The Pulse | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | March 18, 2010

Chattanooga's Weekly Alternative


The Pulse • Dining Out Spotlight

La Altena: Beautiful Woman, Beautiful Food by Colleen Wade Nestled in the Los Altos mountainous region of the Mexican state of Jalisco is a town known as Jesus Maria. It’s a small town, barely more than 15,000 people. It sits within a farming area, the most prominent crop being corn, but there are also wheat, beans, and agave, the plant used to make tequila. Food cooked in the Los Altos region is centered on beef and chicken, with very little seafood because of its distance from the coast. Restaurants there are usually small, with the owners living above them and only a few tables and a diner-style bar as seating—nothing too elaborate in this sleepy little area of Jalisco. It is from here that the Fuentes family, proprietors of La Altena, hail. The family arrived in Chattanooga almost 20 years ago, originally coming for a vacation. They liked it so well they chose to make the Tennessee Valley their home. After a lengthy process and legal meanderings, the Fuentes and their ten children settled in. Says Maria Fuentes, daughter of La Altena founders and manager of the Main Street location, “Before [my parents] even had a restaurant or grocery store, they used to go to flea markets and sell tamales and jewelry, music to Hispanic people because there was no [Hispanic] grocery store here. Then later, my father found an opportunity to open a grocery store.” The

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grocery store started in a modest location, what is now the original La Altena on Main Street, downtown. Senor and Senora Fuentes worked tirelessly in the carneceria, even having their children delivered to the store every afternoon by school bus. Senora Fuentes always made sure there was something hearty prepared for her babies after school. She would sit right in the back of the grocery store and cook up something delicious; so delicious, in fact, that patrons of the carneceria began asking if they could buy her food. It quickly became so popular that the Fuentes were approached about opening a restaurant. After prodding from their eldest son, Gustavo, the family decided to move ahead with the idea. It took no time to decide on a name. Senor Fuentes wanted to honor his wife, and thus, “La Altena,” a term used to

refer to the beautiful women of the Los Altos. La Altena opened downtown on Main Street in 1997 using a plethora of Senora Fuentes’s recipes. The recipes have remained the same since opening. A few recipes have been added, but remain family recipes, created by the Fuentes children and their spouses. Don’t fret, though. Senora Fuentes still has a hand in every recipe, and still makes the tamales herself. Six years after opening the first La Altena, the Fuentes decided it was time to expand. A second location, this one in East Brainerd, was opened. After much success with these two locations, a third was added last year at the foot of Signal Mountain. All locations are still managed by Fuentes family members—children, inlaws, etc. The recipes being used are phenomenal, authentic Los Altos recipes. While each location has a different chef, the ingredients remain the same, as do the prices. Maria Fuentes explains, “We are not in this for the money. We just want everyone to experience ‘my mama’s cooking’.” La Altena: Downtown: 314 E. Main Street; Signal Mountain: 615 Commercial Lane; East Brainerd: 8644 East Brainerd Road. Hours: Sunday – Thursday, 11 a.m. – 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.

March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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Spirits Within

By Joshua Hurley

Shoofly Come Bother Me M

oving around the globe from Italy’s Tuscany growing region to South Australia, home of some of the most revered shiraz in the world, Riley’s has yet another fantastic “Great Buy”. If you’re new to this column, Great Buys is where Riley’s Wine and Spirits on Hixson Pike in Hixson picks a favorite item from our large selection of wine and spirits from around the world and shares it with the readership of The Pulse. This week’s selection is Shoofly Shiraz 2008. Australia’s wine industry is the fourth largest in the world, after France, Italy and the United States. Australia has had vineyards since English and Irish settlers planted seeds sometime in the early 1700s, but it wasn’t until the 1950s that Australian wine began to surpass jug wine quality. By the late 1970s, the wine industry was producing outstanding varietals that the world began to notice. Shiraz is Australia’s most widely planted grape and places seventh in the entire world. Called “syrah” in other parts of the world, it is believed to have originated in France. Australians called shiraz “Hermitage” up into the late 1980s, but the French put a halt to that with their “protected designation of origin”. Since there is a city in Iran called Shiraz, it is believed the grape may have originated there and was then brought to France—which would disprove the French’s claim to ownership. Whichever story you choose to believe, shiraz is now a grape much loved by red wine drinkers around the world. Shiraz grows best in three of South Australia’s prime growing regions: Mclaren Vale, Langmore Creek and Clare Valley. What makes Shoofly Shiraz unique is that it utilizes shiraz grown in each of

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Free Will Astrology PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): In my astrological opinion, you don’t need anything that shrinks you or deflates you or tames you. Influences that pinch your imagination should be taboo, as should anything that squashes your hope or crimps your life force. To make proper use of the vibrations circulating in your vicinity, Pisces, you should gravitate toward situations that pump up your insouciance and energize your whimsy and incite you to express the most benevolent wickedness you can imagine. You’ve got a mandate to fatten up your soul so it can contain a vaster sense of wonder and a more daring brand of innocence. ARIES (March 21-April 19): From what I can tell, your excursion to Fake Paradise didn’t exact too serious a toll. The accidental detour may have seemed inopportune in the moment, but you know what? I think it slowed you down enough to keep you from doing something rash that you would have regretted later. And are you really sorry you were robbed of your cherished illusions? In the long run, I think it was for the best. As for the scratches on your nose from when you stuck it into business you weren’t “supposed” to: They’re a small price to pay for the piquant lesson you got in how not to live.

these regions. Langmore Creek provides its vineyards excellent irrigation from the River Bremer and has a long history of winemaking. The Mclaren Vale region offers the perfect climate for the growth of shiraz: a dry spring and summer with cool nights and short, cool, wet winters. The Clare Valley is the oldest of the three wine regions. Located 120 kilometers north of Adelaide, its high altitude ensures cool-to-cold nights and warm-tohot days with rainy winters and dry summers—all ideal climate for healthy vines. Shoofly Shiraz 2008 is dark purple in color and made from the best shiraz grapes grown in the three above named regions, hand selected, pressed and aged in both American and French oak. It contains strong aromas of violets, plums and blueberries that turn to luscious flavors of cedar and spice on the palate. You might say the 2008 had a tough act to follow with the 2007 vintage being picked by Wine Spectator as one of the top 100 wines in the world for 2009, placing 51st. Well, I would be surprised if the 2008 doesn’t do just as well next November when the new list is released. Shoofly Shiraz 2008 is available at Riley’s for $9.98 plus tax. Cheers!

TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Some people are here on the planet to find success, while others are here to find themselves. In the big scheme of things, I’m not sure which category you fit into, Taurus. But I’m pretty sure that for the next few weeks you’ll be best served by acting as if you’re the latter. Even if you think you’ve found yourself pretty completely in the past, it’s time to go searching again: There are new secrets to be discovered, in large part because you’re not who you used to be. So for now at least, I encourage you to give your worldly ambitions a bit of a rest as you intensify your self-explorations. GEMINI (May 21-June 20): Being a paragon of moral behavior can be fun and rewarding. It’s amazing how many interesting people want to play with me just because they think I’m so #%&@ high-minded. But I’ve got to confess that my commitment to discipline and righteousness is sometimes at odds with my rebellious itch to give you mischievous nudges and outrageous challenges. Like right now, the conscientious teacher in me might prefer to advise you to keep a lid on debauchery, voracity, excess, uproar, slapstick, wise-cracking, fireworks, and limitpushing. But the rabble-rousing agitator in me feels obligated to inform you that at no other time in 2010 will the karmic price be lower for engaging in such pursuits. CANCER (June 21-July 22): It’s time for you to stop specializing in furtive glimpses and start indulging in brazen gazes. You’re ready to phase out your role as a peripheral influence and see if you can be more of a high-intensity instigator and organizer. Yes, Cancerian, you’ve earned the right to claim more credibility and clout—to leave your tentative position outside the magic circle and head in the direction of the sweet hot spot. LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): “Nature seems to exult in abounding radicality, extremism, anarchy,” wrote Annie Dillard in Pilgrim at Tinker Creek. “If we were to judge nature by its common sense or likelihood, we wouldn’t believe the world existed. In nature, improbabilities are the one stock in trade. The whole creation is one lunatic fringe . . . No claims of any and all revelations could be so far-fetched as a single giraffe.” (Dillard’s entire passage is here: http://bit.ly/TinkerCreek.) Reading this passage is a good way for you to prepare for the immediate future, Leo. Why? Because you’ll soon be invited to commune with outlandish glory. You’ll be exposed to stories that burst from the heart of creation. You’ll be prodded to respond to marvelous blips with marvelous blips of your own. But here’s the catch: It may all remain invisible to you if you’re blinded by the false belief that you live a boring, ordinary life. VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): The storm is your

By Rob Brezsny

friend right now, Virgo. So are the deep, dark night and the last place you’d ever think of visiting and the most important thing you’ve forgotten about. So be more willing than usual to marinate in the mysteries—not with logical ferocity but with cagey curiosity. The areas of life that are most crucial for you to deal with can’t be fully understood using the concepts your rational mind favors. The feelings that will be most useful for you to explore are unlike those you’re familiar with. LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Here’s your mantra for the coming week: “I disappear my fear. I resurrect my audacity.” Say it and sing it and murmur it at least 100 times a day. Let it flow out of you after you’ve awoken each morning and are still lying in bed. Let it be the last sound on your lips as you drop off to sleep. Have fun with it. Dip into your imagination to come up with different ways to let it fly—say it as your favorite cartoon character might say it, like a person with a Swedish accent, like your inner teenager, like a parrot, like a grinning sage. “I disappear my fear. I resurrect my audacity. I disappear my fear. I resurrect my audacity.” SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): Have you ever heard about how some all-night convenience stores blast loud classical music out into the parking lot in order to discourage drug dealers from loitering? In the coming days, use that principle whenever you need to drive home a point or make a strong impression. Your aggressive expressions will be more effective if you take the darkness and anger out of them, and instead fill them up with forceful grace and propulsive compassion. SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): The Hebrew word chalom means “dream.” In his book Healing Dreams, Marc Ian Barasch notes that it’s derived from the verb “to be made healthy and strong.” Linguist Joseph Jastrow says that chalom is related to the Hebrew word hachlama, which means “recovery, recuperation.” Extrapolating from these poetic hints and riffing on your astrological omens, I’ve got a prescription for you to consider: To build your vitality in the coming weeks, feed your dreams. And I mean “dreams” in both the sense of the nocturnal adventures you have while you’re sleeping and the sweeping daytime visions of what you’d like to become. CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): I just found out the American shipping company UPS has legally trademarked the color brown. The grass-roots activist in me is incredulous and appalled. But the poet in me doesn’t really care; it’s fine if UPS owns drab, prosaic brown. I’ve still got mahogany at my command, as well as tawny, sepia, taupe, burnt umber, tan, cinnamon, walnut, and henna. That’s especially important for this horoscope, Capricorn, because I’m advising you to be very down to earth, be willing to get your hands dirty, and even play in the muck if necessary in order to take good care of the basics. But don’t do any of that in a boring, humdrum “brown” way. Do it exotically and imaginatively, like mahogany, tawny, sepia, taupe, burnt umber, tan, cinnamon, walnut, and henna. AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): You are hereby excused from having to know a single nuance about the inside story of Angelina Jolie’s secret love tryst with Lady Gaga, or the addictions of conspiracy theorists who lose huge sums of money gambling on the end of the world, or the agony that millionaires suffer from having to support social services with their taxes. In fact, it’s a good time to empty your mind of extraneous, trivial, and useless facts so that you can clear vast new spaces for more pressing data, like how you can upgrade your communication skills, why you should do some upkeep on your close alliances, and what you might do to streamline your social life. Homework: I’ve got two favors to ask of you. No pressure! I’ll still love you if you can’t help. Go here for more info: http://bit.ly/TwoFavors

Chattanooga's Weekly Alternative


JONESIN’

By Matt Jones

“Leaving So Soon?”

–can you figure out the mystery phrase?

Across 1 Get a hold of 5 Group of wives 10 “Ay ___” 14 Dinner extra 15 Take ___ (ride around town, perhaps) 16 “___ go bragh” 17 Part of Julius Caesar’s dying words 18 Vocal qualities 19 Corkboard fastener 20 With 31-across, clue to the first word of the mystery phrase 23 Ask for, as a cigarette 24 Baseball stat enthusiasts’ group 25 ___ in “apple” 28 Like grapefruit 31 See 20-across 35 Tree branch 37 Cedar Rapids’ state 39 ___ Loa 40 Clue to the second word of the mystery phrase 43 Book with Brazil and Bhutan 44 Possesses, oldschool style 45 Remini of “The King of Queens” 46 With 55-across, clue to the remaining three words of the mystery

phrase 48 Make ghost noises 50 Guitarist Cooder and others 51 Gets the bad guy 53 Part of an Indian landmark 55 See 46-across 62 Manilow nightclub 63 Palindromic bridge bid 64 Comedian Williams 65 Entertainment center component 66 ___ the Sunshine Band 67 “___ Almighty” 68 Effortlessness 69 Dispose of, as confidential documents 70 Latvia’s capital Down 1 Actor Kinnear 2 Boring way to learn 3 Low part in a womens’ choir 4 Book jacket passage 5 Nastygrams 6 Tiny particle 7 Rajah’s wife 8 Business chiefs 9 Accident 10 Original company behind the Almond Joy bar 11 Asian sea that’s

really a lake 12 Flickr posts, for short 13 Tattoo stuff 21 Instinct source 22 Manhattan Project weapon, for short 25 Take ___ of faith 26 “We ___ please” 27 Olfactory sense 29 ___ Hashanah 30 When some bars close 32 German painter Albrecht ___ 33 Retract a comment 34 They may be taken with a hand in the air 36 EEG detection 38 Prefix for pilot 41 “From hell’s heart, ___ at thee”--Melville 42 “How bizarre” 47 Kindle stuff 49 Get a little rest 52 Coordinate, with “up” 54 Wild card, often 55 Musical finale 56 Makes a selection 57 ___-wheel drive 58 Feminine suffix 59 “Avatar” race 60 Male-only 61 Sicilian volcano 62 Ernesto Guevara, familiarly

©2010 Jonesin’ Crosswords (editor@jonesincrosswords.com) For answers to this puzzle, call: 1-900-226-2800, 99 cents per minute. Must be 18+. Or to bill to your credit card, call: 1-800-655-6548. Reference puzzle #0459.

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March 18, 2010 | Vol. 7, Issue 11 | The Pulse

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Ask A Mexican!

By Gustavo Arellano

Special San Diego Edition Dear Mexican, By now, I’m sure you’re aware of all the hate crimes against Hispanics in the last few years. By now, I’m sure you’re thinking that this is ¡Ask a Mexican!, not ¡Ask a Hispanic! But let me tell you that all the hate crimes against Hispanics have been because they’ve been thought to be Mexican and at least half—if not more—of those hate crime victims have actually been Mexican. So, my question to you is: Can’t you pathetic losers defend yourselves? Not only do these white guys take your women, but they kick the crap out of you guys all over America. Take the Luis Ramirez incident from Shenandoah, Pennsylvania, for example. The racist pigs who fucked his ass up and killed him were found not guilty by an all-white jury. Why the hell didn’t the Mexicans of Shenandoah come together and riot? That little tiny hick of a town would have been burned to the ground in a matter of hours. I mean, I can see why they hate you people so much. You disgusting things come here illegally, you don’t bother to learn English and expect everybody else to learn Spanish. You guys like to use somebody else’s Social Security number to work. I can go on all day long with the shit you people do. Basically, you people like to milk the cow that is America, but you do not feed it. It seems you all are taking over the whole damn country! Yet it doesn’t give these racist cockroach motherf***ers the right to come after you all. Which brings me to my previous question: Why can’t you spineless wetbacks strike back? — Embarrassed to be Latino Dear Wab, Nice to know Latinos can be as

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stupidly aggressive as the San Diego Minutemen! To quote ranchera icon Vicente Fernandez, “La migra a mi agarró/Trescientas veces, digamos/ Pero jamas me domó/A mi me hizo los mandados/Los golpes que a mi me dío/ Se los cobré a sus paisanos.” Translation for the gabachos and you, coño: better to beat bozos with punitive damages instead of putazos—the former hurt more! Dear Mexican, I hear so many gringos saying that Mexican men are stinky and greasy! Well, I know from experience this is so not true! So what’s up with the misconception? I never met a greasy, stinky Mexican! And my mexicano novio is always very clean, never greasy and smells great! I am a gringa myself, so what’s wrong with my people? Why do they think this way about mexicanos? — La Gringita Bonita Dulcita Dear Pretty, Sweet-Tasting Gabacha, The Mexican turns this question over to his Mexican, Dr. William Nericcio of San Diego State University, author of

the scurrilous Tex(t)-Mex: Seductive Hallucinations of the ‘Mexican’ in America: “Tales of ethnicities and nationalities being able to sense each other litter the history books and the floors of water coolers the world over; so it is that the Japanese can ‘smell’ Americans (apparently we OD on milk products producing an olfactory side-effect that floors Kyotans, Godzilla and more), Mengele and the Nazis could out a Jew on the spot with their rulers, calipers, and measurements tables; and, of course, Mexicans…well, we just plain stink. Or so the story goes. No doubt the shared wisdom that declares we stink derives from the same source that says we’re ‘dirty.’ Most, if not all of these tales derive from Pershing’s American Expeditionary force that invaded Northern Mexico (with Patton and Eisenhower along for the ride, no less) in 1916. American fools from Maine to Poughkeepsie took their jingoistic xenophobia with them to the lands of Zapata and Villa and came away convinced that Mexicans were dirty—in this regard, they mirrored the motherland’s (England) view of the Spanish and joined a long tradition of loathing that characterizes the relationship between folks who speak English and those that prefer Spanish.” Translation or us proles: don’t gabachos stink to high heaven?

“Tales of ethnicities and nationalities being able to sense each other litter the history books and the floors of water coolers the world over; so it is that the Japanese can ‘smell’ Americans.”

Ask the Mexican at themexican@ askamexican.net, myspace.com/ocwab, facebook.com/garellano, youtube.com/ askamexicano, find him on, Twitter, or write via snail mail at: Gustavo Arellano, P.O. Box 1433, Anaheim, CA 92815.

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The Pulse - Vol. 7, Issue 11