the bowl CHATT WHISKEY’S NEW DIGS dizzytown DEAR COUNCIL, OUR WISH LIST March 14, 2013
Vol. 10 • No. 11
Chattanooga’s Weekly Alternative
Maximus runs Hamilton County’s child support enforcement program, but their performance has some local parents angry, confused and looking to county and state government for answers. By John Lasker
After years of neglect under the current mayor, will Andy Berke embrace urban design as part of his broader vision for the city? By Rich Bailey
IN THE 1960s, 70s & 80s, TOP BANDS ROUTINELY ROCKED THE
THE WHO BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN ZZ TOP LYNYRD SKYNYRD FOREIGNER CHICAGO PETER FRAMPTON BON JOVI AEROSMITH VAN HALEN EDGAR WINTER HUMBLE PIE
ROXY MUSIC THE DOOBIE BROTHERS & MANY OTHERS
SO WHAT HAPPENED? FORMER SOUND SEVENTY STAFFER & MUSIC INDUSTRY VETERAN BEN JUMPER SAYS:
‘IT CAN HAPPEN AGAIN—WITH REAL MANAGERS’
theatre ‘sight for sore eyes’ screen lookout wild film festival food moe’s
2 • The Pulse • march 14-20, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com
THIS WEEK march 14-20 IN THE PULSE
‘SIGHT FOR SORE EYES’ ARTS THEATRE P15 ON THE COVER • DESIGN by BILL RAMSEY ADVERTISING
Director of Sales Mike Baskin Account Executives Chee Chee Brown • Eric Foster • Jessica Gray John Holland • Rick Leavell • Jerry Ware
Editor & Creative Director Bill Ramsey Operations Manager/Webmaster Mike McJunkin Contributors Rich Bailey • Rob Brezsny • Zachary Cooper Chuck Crowder • John DeVore • Janis Hashe David Helton • Matt Jones • Mike McJunkin Ernie Paik • Sarah Skates • Alex Teach Richard Winham Photographers Kim Hunter • Josh Lang Cartoonists Max Cannon • E.J. Pettinger • Richard Rice Jen Sorensen • Tom Tomorrow Interns Gaby Dixon • Julia Sharp • Esan Swan
Offices 1305 Carter St. • Chattanooga, TN 37402 Phone 423.265.9494 Fax 423.266.2335 Web chattanoogapulse.com Email email@example.com Calendar firstname.lastname@example.org THE FINE PRINT The Pulse is published weekly by Brewer Media and is distributed throughout the city of Chattanooga and surrounding communities. The Pulse covers a broad range of topics concentrating on culture, the arts, entertainment and local news. 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. We’re watching. The Pulse may be distributed only by authorized distributors. © 2013 Brewer Media. All rights reserved.
BREWER MEDIA GROUP Publisher & President Jim Brewer II
Founded 2003 by Zachary Cooper & Michael Kull
chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 3
THE JAVA JAM
Baristas to battle for title at Coffee Throwdown The heat—and the coffee— is on! Following a preliminary round on March 10, local baristas vying for the title of champion of the first Chattanooga Coffee Throwdown will compete on Sunday, March 17, at Thrive Studio in Coolidge Park for that honor, cash prizes and coffee-related gadgets and doodads. The contest, created by the Chattanooga Coffee Club, is hosted by Thrive Cafe and co-sponsored by The Pulse, will pit the city’s best professional and amateur baristas against each other in a friendly throwdown to determine the best cup of joe in town.
the TALK OF THE NOOG NEWS • COMMENTARY • BULLETINS & PUSH NOTIFICATIONS AT DIAL-UP SPEED
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The event, to be held from 2 to 6 p.m., is free for spectators and will feature tastings and demonstrations. According to organizer David Snyder, who is also a barista at Thrive Cafe, 14 professional and amateur (home) baristas entered the semi-finals, with eight moving forward to Sunday’s final round. The finalists, and their respective categories, are: Brewed Coffee—Jeremy Moore (Bonlife), Jamion Williams (private beverage consultant), Drake Farmer (Bonlife) and Jared Dalmas (home barista). Espresso—Bryan Fowler, (home barista), Whitney Turner (Pasha Coffee & Tea), Sarah Elliot (Pasha) and Drew Baranowski (Pasha). Competitors have the choice to compete in three categories— specialty, espresso and brewed coffee—on Sunday and will be challenge each other for brag-
ging rights, cash and specialty coffee-related swag, such as an aeropress, tamping mat, tamper, scale, T-shirts and local coffee. Espressoparts.com and primacoffee.com are providing the prizes. Spectators will also have the opportunity to win swag, pastries and coffee by entering a $2 raffle. Winners of the Coffee Throwdown will be announced next week in The Pulse. Thrive is located at 191 River St. in Coolidge Park. Call (423) 800-0676 for more information. —Bill Ramsey
Brand eyes Southside for distillery as bill nears passage Joe Ledbetter doesn’t always drink whiskey. Wait. Yes, he does. He drinks Chattanooga Whiskey, which makes sense since he is coowner of the brand. It makes even more sense since his company is on the verge of opening the first distillery in Chattanooga since Prohibition. After a bill allowing the distillery to operate in Hamilton County was delayed in the legislature, it now appears passage is all but certain—and Ledbetter and his partner, Tim Piersant, are punch-drunk with victory. The company and brand launched a year ago to good reviews and sales. The only element missing was the ability to claim Chattanooga Whiskey was distilled in Chattanoooga. Which it is not, because the county opted out of a 2009 law that allowed counties to determine their own laws allowing the establishment of such businesses. At the time, there were none. But with a majority of County
4 • The Pulse • march 14-20, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com
THE DREAM The historic former Turnbull Cone Machine Company is the planned future home of Chattanooga Whiskey’s distillery.
Commissioners signing off on a new initiative spearheaded by Chattanooga Whiskey Co., the bill went to the State Legislature and passage now seems assured. Given that, Ledbetter announced plans for the proposed Chattanooga Whiskey Distillery and entered into a tentative agreement with Chestnut Street Properties, pending passage of the bill approving the distillery. Chattanooga Whiskey also partnered with Artech Design Group for the build-out of its new distillery in the historic former Turnbull Cone Machine Co. on the Southside at Fort and 14th Streets. The building, which is listed on National Register of Historic Places, contains 30,000 square feet, allowing for two rooftop patios to be used in conjunction with the distillery’s planned 5,000-square-foot, topfloor event space. The first floor will include the tour entrance, local historical artifacts, whiskey glasses and documents from Chattanooga’s pre-Prohibition distilling history, as well as a gift shop for tourists to purchase commemorative bottles, memorabilia and apparel. From the first floor, visitors can view the 2,000-gallon Vendome copper still the company affectionately refers to as Big Bertha. The still will rise 16 feet from the underground production area through the tourist viewing area on the first floor. The underground production area will include distilling, barrelfilling, proofing, a bottling line and packaging for Chattanooga Whiskey. The second and third floors of
the building will store and age approximately 1,000 53-gallon barrels of whiskey. Plans also include the fourth floor to be the last stop on a tour where visitors will be able to sample a selection of whiskeys made at the distillery. The fourth-floor space offers a panoramic view of Chattanooga and Lookout Mountain, which will be used as an event space for corporate gatherings, private events, receptions and the occasional Chattanooga Whiskey Presents Music Series, all according to Ledbetter. Because the distillery is strategically located in downtown Chattanooga within a couple blocks of Interstate 24 and State Highway 27, as well as being within walking distance of other Chattanooga attractions such as the Chattanooga Choo Choo, Finley Stadium, Main Terrain Park, The Chattanoogan Hotel and the Convention Center, the new business can’t help but boost visitors to the Southside. Cheers, Chattanooga Whiskey—we toast you and call your initiative (and booze) a powerful shot of good business and good news. —Staff
short form, part 1
Writers Guild sponsors Flash Fiction contest Heads up, all you young (and old) Hemingways, Fitzgeralds and Bradburys, the Chattanooga Writers Guild 2013 Flash Fiction Contest is upon us. Flash fiction, a style of fictional literature or fiction of extreme brevity, usually 1,000 words or less, has become an increasingly popular format for short story contests. Brevity, as they say, is both the soul of wit and the great charm of eloquence. Unfortunately, there aren’t any multimillion-dollar flash fiction book contracts, but the first place prize is $100, with $50 and $25 going to second- and third-place winners, respectively. For writers, no amount of cash is to be scoffed at. The contest deadline is Wednesday, March 20, and is open to anyone over the age of
18, excluding members of CWG directors, contest committee and their families. A few basic guidelines apply: Manuscripts must not exceed 1,500 words, be unpublished, typed in a clear black 12-point font (you might stay away from Comic Sans) on a white background. Stories should be single-spaced and double-spaced between paragraphs, with no names or other identifying information on them. More details, entry fees and rules can be found on the guild’s website at chattanoogawritersguild.com. —Esan Swan
short form, part ii
Pulse Short Story Contest now under way After you’ve finished penning what you are certain will be the winning entry in the CWG Flash Fiction Contest, you may also want to double down and enter The Pulse 2013 Short Story Contest, now open for entries through March 28. Previously an extreme flashfiction contest in which stories were limited to 600 words, we’ve opened the metaphorical flood gates this year and increased the count 1,000 carefully chose words. Six hundred words is too brief, 1,500 too many and, to invert the old adage, 1,000 words is worth a picture. The rules: Stories must have a Southern theme and be previously unpublished. Entries must be submitted in document format, attached to an email and sent to email@example.com by March 28. Include your name, phone number and a brief biography. The winner, determined by a panel of judges, including Dr. Joe Wilferth, head of UTC’s English Department, will be published in The Pulse’s special Southern Lit issue on April 18 and will receive a pair of tickets to the Celebration of Southern Literature that week. Runners-up will be published in subsequent issues of The Pulse. Good writing and good luck. —B.R.
Renowned writers gather for Celebration of Southern Lit The Southern Lit Alliance will host the Celebration of Southern Literature for its 17th year from April 18-20, featuring the works of world-renowned Southern writers. Once known as the Conference on Southern Literature, this event has now evolved into a community event that champions more than 40 southern writers and draws nearly 1,000 readers from across the country. Once again, The Pulse will cosponsor this important biannual event, which features some of the South’s most important writers— including Chattanooga’s Jamie Quatro—during a three-day feast for literary fans. The schedule includes readings by authors, conversational sessions, book signings and lectures on various aspects of the craft of writing across all genres. On Thursday and Friday, April 18 and 19, a film screening and narrative musical event will take place, respectively. The film is “The Rough South of Larry Brown,” which follows firemanturned-writer Larry Brown, integrating his short stories with life in Oxford, Miss. Oxford American magazine named it one of the 13 Essential Southern Documentaries. “Good Ol’ Girls” is a musical adaptation about the “big hair and bigger hearts” of five Southern women and is based on short stories by Lee Smith and Jill McCorkle. Songwriters Matraca Berg and Marshall Chapman will also be speaking at “The Voices Behind Good Ol’ Girls.” Additional tickets to these sessions can be reserved early or purchased for $10 at the registration desk during the Celebration of Southern Literature. All events take place at the Tivoli Theatre. Registration is required, and tickets are available as a three-day pass, single-day pass and at a discounted student rate. Visit southernlitalliance.org to learn more and purchase tickets. — Julia Sharp
politics, the media & other strange bedfellows
A Letter to Our New Council
ell, that was quick, predictable, only mildly disappointing and, turnout-wise, pathetic. But no matter. Now that most of the dust has settled—besides the District 4 Jack Benson/Larry Grohn runoff on April 9 and the as-yet unsettled Yusuf Hakeem vs. Peter Murphy vs. J.J. and the Check Marks smackdown in District 9—let’s get back, or down, to business.
Dear Mayor-Elect Berke and City Council Members-Elect: Congratulations! You did it! Now comes the hard part—effectively governing. Let’s not make this difficult. Chattanooga needs a mayor and council who can work together for the betterment of the city on every issue and at every level. We know you all agree on that, but things get tricky with that first big decision. We’re sure you’ll give it your all—and you’ve got four years to prove yourselves. So, let’s dispense with the relatively easy stuff and clear the table for the Big Issues of crime, taxes, utilities and potholes. Here’s our wish list to accomplishing much for the city’s arts-loving population in one quick, painless and fell swoop: • With regard to the Education, Arts & Culture Department, you have two choices: Either return it to Parks & Rec, with equal rights, or restructure it without the Tivoli Theatre or the Memorial Auditorium under its management. We see value in a separate-but-equal EAC speaking up for public art and education, but venue management is clearly not its expertise (see Page 10). We have nothing personal against administrator Missy Crutchfield, but either let her go or reassign her, drop her salary to a reasonable level and forbid her from dealing with anything involving city money and managing properties. All evidence points to the fact that this is the prudent thing to do. • With that done, either hire a professional, experienced venue manager to run and book our twin civic jewels or issue bids for a professional venue and entertainment management agency to do so for us (again, see Page 10). Again, all evidence points to the fact that
this is the prudent thing to do. You don’t have to sell or lease either theater, but you must place them in competent hands for the sake of the city’s finances and for those of us who would like to see something other than a touring Broadway show or a near-dead legend picking up some quick cash. • Transparency is a theme many of you ran on, so let’s bring that to bear with regard to public art. Each time the city offers any financial support for a new piece of public art, a barrage of complaints flow in, charging the city is using money better spent on fixing potholes, funding schools or hiring police officers and firefighters.
Stand up and tell them this: Public art is a worthwhile investment. It beautifies the city and notifies its citizens, visitors and businesses looking to relocate here, as well as the national media, that we are not the Old South. Remind them that the funds spent are small compared to the returns, and that those funds have been pre-allocated and have nothing to do with stealing from other priorities. Be clear on this. • Finally, embrace, or at least listen to, every reasonable request for review to continue to introduce more progressive urban design into our still re-emerging downtown (see Page 14). Welcome arts organizations and help them to continue to imbed the arts downtown and spread the movement to the suburbs. Your children— and the 18,000 people who actually voted for you—will thank you. You’ve got one month before taking office. Do these simple things and you will start strong.
chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 5
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t was 2 a.m. and we were in the middle of a “steppedup” patrol presence on the street in response to a series of gang-related shootings. The shootings had become so common the local media had stopped running stories about local government denying their existence because, to the media’s dismay, local law enforcement kept referring to them as “gang-related shootings.” This eliminated the air of drama and obfuscation and made them only “regular shootings,” which have a lifespan of an initial report and maybe a follow-up and therefore annoyed “the media” to no end, but that is an entirely different story. I was across the street from the scene of the most recent tragedy and spoke with a young man who was more than
happy to be there, if not likely even seeking an audience to explain why. After a quick introduction, the young man surveying the scene was proud to say the incident was “Gangsta,” that this was “Hood Life,” and that it was “Real” in Chattanooga, espousing the valor of the battle that took place on this spot. I listened, then told him “Really? I was here that night. This
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6 • The Pulse • march 14-20, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com
guy was shot in the back. He was unarmed. I heard it was over a girl.” My young General looked confused. I said, “That’s not gangsta; that’s a coward. That’s dogshit, pal.” “Naw, naw … that was REAL”, he said, but he now lacked conviction. “Shot him in the face when he was already down,” I said. “Over a girl. Is that hard core? You got a long way to go, kid. Life means something, man. That wasn’t gansta. That’s not taking care of your kids, your parents, defending folks. That was pathetic. Now he’s going to jail, the other guy is dead, the families are a wreck … some gangsta. Some hero. He’s a fool.” It was actually the lightest I’d ever gone, but my young veteran lacked response. And lacking answers, he just walked away, unable to avoid the truth any more than he could the crime-scene tape streaming from the street signs in the cool night air, the spot where the fire department had bleached the blood off the road leaving a rare clean spot on the streets of East Chattanooga. I’ve had many lessons in fact versus fiction—more than my young student had that night, I suspect. I didn’t lead or live his life and I certainly wasn’t any better than him, but I’d experienced some fairly graphic examples. Another “gang-related” shooting came to mind that resulted not in revenge, but the death of an infant in the confines of its home, the one bullet of more than 40 that found an unintended target through a bedroom wall and into its undeveloped skull. “Gangsta.” The driver of the offending vehicle met a similar fate behind the wheel years down the road, but the damage was already done. “Gangsta.” A dead baby was an honorable result of … what? Nothing. How embarrassing to have to explain this
to anyone. This is where that kid’s head was at. Most of his neighbors too, in fact. The ones that have the indescribable right to not pull over when blue-lighted, or go to jail after beating their spouses, or robbing a neighbor on the street or a local business justified, in their minds, because “they had to eat.” This is the society we live in, catered to by social reform, overwhelmed by frequent horrific acts, reinforced by Hollywood. All without consequences, unless of course you count the dead infants and robbery and shooting victims who either survived or perished. But they’re not in the script and therefore not subject to fault or conscience. How convenient. How revolting. Reality—how do you teach that without such horrific examples? And how many of those examples can you use before they simply become the status quo, the new bar to be surpassed? Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe I’m the one who has it screwed up—but I don’t think so. And if I’m right, would life be better for us all if we all knew mankind was barely outside of the wild? For now, no. Lies are better. Theater is right. Happiness comes in the form of cookies, new love and temporary escapes, so why take that away? A long fantasy with infrequent disruptions beats reality any day of the week. But I will not give the most violently ignorant the satisfaction of taking the most cowardly acts and repainting them as something “noble,” something “gangsta.” They can forego their humanity, but they will not forego reality—at least not while they’re talking to me on the streets. Our streets. • Alex Teach is a police officer of nearly 20 years experience. The opinions expressed are his own. Follow him on Facebook at facebook.com/alex.teach.
PULSE EXCLUSIVE • CHILD SUPPORT IN HAMILTON COUNTY
Nearly 25,000 Hamilton County children are dependent on the child support enforcement program run by Maximus, a global, for-profit corporation under contract by the State of Tennessee. But some parents charge Maximus is more concerned with profits than properly administering the program. By John Lasker
n Hamilton County, thousands of parents pay child support, a financial obligation they willingly meet. Doing so is also both state and federal law. But what many in Chattanooga don’t know is that Hamilton County does not have complete control over its child support enforcement program. Instead, a private corporation by the name of Maximus is in charge and their performance has some Chattanooga parents angry, confused and looking to their county and state government for answers. But in this age of privatization, answers are hard to come by. Nearly 25,000 Hamilton County children are dependent on the child support enforcement program run by Maximus. A child support program’s mission is simple enough, but difficult to execute: it requires the non-custodial parent, who are mostly men, pay the custodial parent until their child is 18. This task is made more challenging by a slumped economy; out of the 25,000 cases, just over 50 percent of non-custodial parents pay on consistent basis. Nonetheless, the financial stakes are high for Maximus, as huge sums of money are being exchanged—not just the state funding needed to run the program, but the huge sum that is regularly paid between noncustodial parents and custodial parents. Indeed, Maximus and the State of Tennessee offer the custodial parent the option of receiving the non-custodial’s payment through a pre-paid
Visa card. And just like any bank card, Visa charges fees such as overdraft penalties and ATM charges. These fees take away money that’s meant for their children, say parents. Which makes more and more Chattanooga parents ask: Should a private corporation, whose ultimate goal is to make money, be responsible for a social service task so critical to the well-being of the community? Shouldn’t a community’s children come first, instead of the bottom line? “When you have a private company coming in and taking over, it becomes a business,” said Michelle Baker, a single parent from Chattanooga who has inspired an online uprising against Maximus of other parents from Hamilton County and across Tennessee. “It is no longer a public service that assists the public,” she said. “They’re going to be more concerned about making money and trading their stocks. They’re more
concerned about the almighty dollar. They’ve turned [child support] into a money-making industry.” Baker has been penning a blog about Maximus for several years now titled mothercluckerblogger.blogspot.com and the blog’s banner headline best sums up what it’s all about: “Tennessee Child Support Enforcement is a Joke.” Baker told The Pulse that since she started the blog in 2009, her rants and investigations have logged more than 30,000 views. She said hundreds of parents have left posts and their disdain for Maximus is seething through their words. This anger is backed up by the state, as Tennessee’s Department of Human Services has logged 894 complaints against Maximus from July 2009 to September 2012. Out of the 894 complaints, 88 came from Hamilton County. Maximus is listed on the New York Stock Exchange (MMS), so making as much money as possible for themselves and their stockholders is certainly a priority. Maximus is based in Virginia and the company’s mantra is “Helping Government Serve the People.” It has offices all over the world, employing more than 7,500 people, with reported revenues of more than $1 billion in 2012. But Maximus told The Pulse making money is not it’s top priority. “The family-centered approach we take reflects the financial realities that custodial
“When you have a private company coming in and taking over, it becomes a business. It is no longer a public service that assists the public.” Michelle Baker
Single parent and blogger and non-custodial parents face in a community where economic recovery and employment lags behind the national average,” said Sally Anderson, an outsourced Maximus spokesperson who works for Nashville-based Hall Strategies. “In addition to supporting custodial parents to obtain the child support ordered, Maximus focuses on addressing barriers that non-custodial parents face in paying their obligations,” Anderson said. “This child-centric approach has been shown to lead to longerterm consistent child support payments as well as creating less divisiveness between the child’s parents.” The contract to run a child support enforcement program in Tennessee is awarded by the state’s Department of Human Services or DHS. In some cases, DHS has fired a county’s entire child support office for poor performance and turned the
program over to Maximus; this happened in Memphis’ Shelby County in 2009. But in the case of Hamilton County, the county voluntarily handed the program over to Maximus in 2000. One county employee who is familiar with why Hamilton County made the move to privatize its child support enforcement program said the decision was mostly based on what some refer to as the “new normal” regarding nuclear families. “The number of children born out of wedlock is growing,” said the county employee, who wished to remain anonymous. “It became overwhelming [the county making non-custodial parents pay child support to custodial parents]. We decided to give it up because Maximus could do it better and more efficiently. The county also opted out because we would be able to throw more resources at the judicial side of things.” Chattanooga single parent Baker believes Maximus is too dependent on temporary employees to do such essential work for Hamilton and other Tennessee counties. The complaints she has heard largely focus on the inexperience of the temporary workers. Baker said the government employees who were fired by Maximus were seasoned and experienced, and most seemed to genuinely care about their work and service to the community. The government em-
chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 7
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ployees performed at a higher level because they were paid better and received benefits, she said. The Pulse tried to verify Baker’s claims about Maximus’ use of temporary workers in Hamilton County and their pay, but the State of Tennessee, Hamilton County government and Maximus refused to speak about this. The Pulse also asked Maximus if it was making a profit for its work in Hamilton County. Lisa Miles, a spokesperson for Maximus’s investor relations, said, “We are unable to disclose financial information by project.” What can’t be hidden is Maximus’ record outside the state of Tennessee. In 2000, Maximus lost its child support contract with El Paso County in Colorado Springs, Colo., after its district attorney’s office fielded 3,000 complaints over three years. Florida also fired Maximus and another contractor when both companies collected 3 cents for every $25 of taxpayer’s money, according to the Sarasota (Fla.) HaroldTribune. Locally, the anger against Maximus rose to a crescendo last December when State Rep. JoAnne Favors (D-Chattanooga) hosted a fact-finding forum about the corporation at the Kingdom Center. Favors recently told The Pulse that she’s “heard so many complaints” about Maximus that she said she’s making the issue of child support enforcement one of her top priorities. “Three hundred people attended the forum and I had prepared for 50,” Favors said, who added that some of the stories told during the forum were “heart wrenching”. Favors said she never knew child support enforcement was “this complex.” She said she now believes the child support enforcement system in Hamilton County and other Tennessee counties sets the noncustodial parent “up for failure.” “You can go to jail for 10 days for each payment you are behind,” Favors said. “When you are working a low-wage job, you’re not going to catch up. Some noncustodial parents were told to pay $1,200 a month when they’re making $800 a month. You just can’t do it.” Maximus spokesperson Hall from Nashville said Favors’ position on child support is too “extreme.” During the forum, said Hall, Favors told the audience, “‘Going to jail for [not paying] child support is like going sharecropping, being enslaved, prison labor.” Nevertheless, Favors said custodial parents, mostly mothers, also had plenty to say during the forum. “I was surprised with custodial parents too, who came and said they were not receiving their payments in a timely matter,” she said.
Baker, a custodial parent, said she believes her own experience with Maximus is a good indicator as to what many other parents are going through. In 2006, Baker wanted her daughter’s father to accept responsibility for her upbringing, so they went to family court to establish child support. The judge determined the father, who was employed with benefits, was a year behind in child support and ordered him to pay nearly $7,000 in arrears and provide health insurance. He paid the arrears, but never provided health insurance. “I contacted Maximus many times to ask them to enforce the insurance issue, but Maximus told me there was ‘nothing they could do for me,’” Baker said, adding that she was confused as to why they wouldn’t just enforce the order. She turned to the DHS for help. “They sent me a letter saying I would have to contact Maximus about my complaints, since they have jurisdiction over child support collections for my county, and that they could not assist me with anything child-support related,” she said. “In 2007, I was forced to go on Medicaid since Maximus and the state refused to enforce the order, which stated the non-custodial parent was responsible for providing insurance.” Earlier this year, she received a letter from DHS telling her that both the court and Maximus had made a “mistake.” DHS said Maximus had not deliberately denied health coverage, but the corporation had misinterpreted the court order believing it was her responsibility to provide coverage for her daughter. Baker loathed going on Medicaid, but she had no choice but to accept what the system offered her. “All of us who are forced to deal with Maximus child support are, in my eyes, at the mercy of a giant corporation and local governments that are clearly working together to make a profit from child-support collections,” she said. “Politicians on a local level do not want to suffer the heat from an under-performing juvenile court system, and Maximus is more than happy to collect their millions, under-perform and not give a crap about child-support collections.” • John Lasker is an Ohio-based investigative reporter whose work has appeared in more than 50 newspapers and magazines, including Wired, The Christian Science Monitor, Agence France Press, Truthdig and the Cleveland Scene. In 2010, Lasker received a grant from the Knight Foundation to write about U.S. military servicewomen and military sexual trauma, for which he won a 2012 Project Censored award.
PICK of the litter » MAKER DAY: THINKING IN 3D
pulse » PICKS
• A curated weekly selection of picks from the Chattanooga Live and Arts & Entertainment calendars by Pulse staffers.
THU03.14 MUSIC Jack’s Shadow, Subkonscious, Backwoods Payback • Another Thursday night triple threat at The Pint. 9 p.m. • The Honest Pint • 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-419 • thehonestpint.com
talk Human Trafficking • Journalist Benjamin Skinner, author of “A Crime So Monstrous: Face to Face with Modern-Day Slavery,” speaks on the issue this evening at Southern Adventist University in Collegedale. 7:30 p.m. • Thatcher Chapel Hall 4881 Taylor Circle • (423) 236-2768 southern.edu
FRI03.15 MUSIC Road To Nightfall Finals • Function, Smooth Dialects, Amber Fults and the Ambivalent Lovers and Jordan Hallquist and The Outfit compete for a Nightfall headlining spot tonight at Rhythm & Brews, with the winner determined by judges. 8 p.m. • Rhythm & Brews • 221 Market St. rhythm-brews.com
THINK IT, PRINT IT 3D printing technology on display at Maker Day • The Maker Movement is upon us. Chattanooga led the U.S. in manufacturing 100 years ago. Now, 3D printers are changing the world. A new generation of “manufacturers” are in town—CHA Makers—hosting Maker Day, a showcase to introduce the city to the wonders of the rapidly developing technology of 3D printing. This event, scheduled for Saturday, March 16, at the downtown library, will feature the Makers and their printers, HD model displays, informational kiosks and informative programs, including speakers from local industrial and business interests, educators and others who have a vision of how 3D printing and additive manufacturing will shape our region. Maker Day is designed to be both fun and educational, and aspires to stimulate interest in 3D printing and
SAT03.16 THEATRE “Sight for Sore Eyes” • ETC’s latest production in its new digs at Eastgate. Read Janis Hashe’s review on Page 15. 7:30 p.m. • Ensemble Theatre of Chattanooga 5600 Brainerd Road • (423) 987-5141 ensembletheatreofchattanooga.com
MUSIC Strung Like A Horse • Chattanooga’s most entertaining band (and one of the city’s best) is putting together a clever new video. Catch them tonight with Red Clay Revival at JJ’s. 9 p.m. • JJ’s Bohemia • 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400 • jjsbohemia.com
additive manufacturing. The event will coincide with Teen Tech Week, which includes Chattanooga’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) schools, student teams from the University of Tennessee and the intrepid Makers who have obsessively promoted 3D printing when no one had a clue what that meant. If you don’t have a clue, plan on attending this free event, one of many new uses of The Public Library’s Fourth Floor and an eye-opening view into this fascinating new technology. Maker Day: Thinking in 3D 11 a.m.-4 p.m. The Fourth Floor The Public Library 1001 Broad St. Facebook.com/CHAmakers
SPORTS Chattanooga Lookouts Fan Fest • Ready for some baseball? The Lookouts will hold the team’s first-ever Fan Fest on today at AT&T Field. The free event includes a full line-up of fun activities for fans. The Lookouts begin their 2013 regular season on April 4 against the Huntsville Stars at AT&T Field. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. • AT&T Field, 201 Power Alley • (423) 267-4849 lookouts.com
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chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 9
When Chattanooga Rocked
Former Sound Seventy staffer and music industry veteran Ben Jumper says the city’s venues need now what they had 30 years ago—real managers. Learn from Track 29, he says, and the Auditorium and McKenzie Arena could quickly rock again. By Bill Ramsey
f you’re well north of 40 and grew up in Chattanooga, you’ll recall the many great concerts that visited the Scenic City in its rock ‘n’ roll heyday—and the one place you could see them. Before The Roundhouse and Riverbend, the Memorial Auditorium was Chattanooga’s only venue capable of hosting touring bands of regional and national stature from the 1960s through the early 1980s. During that era, the Auditorium—and Chattanooga—did indeed rock. Fast forward 30 years. Only two notable rock acts appeared at the Auditorium last year—Crosby, Stills & Nash and Hall & Oates— both still worth seeing, but obviously well past their prime. The Tivoli continues to play host to a string of legacy artists—Kris Kristofferson, Merle Haggard, George Jones—all worth seeing, but each has limited appeal to younger audiences. Besides the infrequent Pops performance featuring such older acts as The Indigo Girls, only The Black Jacket Symphony’s tribute performances come close to rocking the ornate
theatre—and that is a generous assessment. As for UTC’s McKenzie Arena, only Elton John— whose November 2010 show was the last of note—stands out. He will visit again on March 23 for a sold-out show marking the 40th anniversary of “Rocket Man” tour. A legend, an icon, great fun? Yes, but hardly cutting edge. Meanwhile, Track 29 continues to serve up an exciting and eclectic schedule of bands from diverse genres, from rock to country, electronic to Americana. So what happened? The answer seems obvious, but we turned to Ben Jumper, a former staffer with Sound Seventy (the Nashville-based booking agency that brought Chattanooga the hottest touring bands in the ’70s) and owner of SoundCheck Nashville, one of the nation’s largest rehearsal and production studios, for a professional opinion. Jumper began his career in the early 1970s working with Sound Seventy, which promoted and produced many memorable shows in that decade—from Southern rock legends Lynyrd Skynyrd, 38 Special, the Atlanta Rhythm Section and Mother’s Finest, to hot
“Touring has become a main revenue stream. The Memorial Auditorium needs an active manager ... someone who knows the promoters and seeks out concerts.” Ben Jumper rock acts such as Bruce Springsteen, Hall & Oates, Foreigner, Peter Frampton and Roxy Music, to name but a few. Jumper went on to join the Charlie Daniels Band on the road from 1976-80, returned to Chattanooga and formed ChattaTik, a concert-ticketing operation. He simultaneously launched Catering to the Stars and Mid-America Entertainment, sold them and launched Crew One Productions in 1992. In 2004, he purchased SoundCheck Nashville and has
since expanded its operations to Austin, Texas, where I caught up with him recently prior to the launch of the annual South by Southwest Music & Film Festival. Jumper is busy man, but he was eager to hear about the recent controversies swirling about his old stomping grounds. As he reminisced about the many concerts he’d witnessed at the Auditorium—Paul Revere & The Raiders was his first show, he said, which also featured The Who on their first U.S. tour—I provided him a
brief synopsis of the troubles surrounding the Auditorium and the Tivoli. We also discussed McKenzie Arena and the general concert situation then and now in Chattanooga. As a highly regarded music industry professional with many years of experience under his belt—including a wealth of knowledge of the concert tour business here and elsewhere—Jumper has valuable advice to share. “The whole industry has been in a major shakeup with all the downloads,” Jumper said, referring to the demise of physical album sales. “Touring has become a main revenue stream. The Memorial Auditorium needs an active manager, a member of IAVM [International Association of Venue Managers], someone who knows the promoters and seeks out concerts.” The Auditorium began life as a community civic center, but following decades of neglect the facility underwent a $2.1 million renovation in the mid-1960s, reopening in 1966 with such amenities as escalators and air conditioning. As rock ‘n’ roll took hold, followed by the British Invasion and the rise of American soul, the Auditorium became ground zero for touring acts visiting Chattanooga. Jumper himself was in the audience during those years. “I remember being one of about 10 white folks at a James Brown show,” he said. In the pre-arena era, venues such as the Auditorium were prime tour stops on almost any band of renown’s concert schedule. In the 1970s, as rock ‘n’ roll became harder, louder and more sophisticated, America’s city-owned
local and regional shows
Carey Murdock with The Dustin Curry Band & Sundy Best ($5) Jack’s Shadow with Subkoncious and Backwoods Payback ($5) Jet W Lee with Endelouz and The Bird Wings ($5) Grits and Soul with The Ryan Oyer Band and Shelly King ($5)
Wed, Mar 13 Thu, Mar 14 Wed, Mar 20 Thu, Mar 21
9pm 9pm 9pm 9pm
St. Patrick’s Day • Mar 17 • Music 2 p.m. to Midnight Molly Maguires • John Lathim & Company • The Fabled Canelands Olta • The Punknecks Sundays: Live Trivia 4-6pm • Free Live Irish Music at 7pm (No show Mar 24)
10 • The Pulse • march 14-20, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com
Full food menu serving lunch and dinner. 11am-2am, 7 days a week. 35 Patten Parkway * 423.468.4192 thehonestpint.com * Facebook.com/thehonestpint
Chattanooga Live CALENDAR@CHATTANOOGAPULSE.COM
THU 03.14 The Loop 7 p.m. Sugar’s Ribs, 507 Broad St. (423) 508-8956 sugarsribs.com Open Mic 7 p.m. The Camp House, 1427 Williams St. (423) 702-8081 thecamphouse.com Open Mic with Hap Henninger 9 p.m. The Office, 901 Carter St. (423) 634-9191 Arlo Gilliam 9 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Road (423) 499-9878 budssportsbar.com Jill Andrews, Humming House 9 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. rhythm-brews.com Jack’s Shadow, Subkonscious, Backwoods Payback 9 p.m. The Honest Pint, 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-4192 thehonestpint.com Stereo Dig, Hey Rocco 9 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400 423 Bass Love 10 p.m. Raw, 409 Market St. (423) 756-1919
fri 03.15 Travis Singleton, Danika Holmes, Ronnie Dennis 7:30 p.m. The Camp House, 1427 Williams St. (423) 702-8081 thecamphouse.com Road To Nightfall Finals 8 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. rhythm-brews.com Channing Wilson 8 p.m. Acoustic Café, 61 RBC Drive, Ringgold, Ga. (706) 965-2065 ringgoldacoustic.com The Arlo Trio 9 p.m. Jack A’s Chop Shop Saloon, 742 Ashland Terrace, (423) 713-8739
jackaschopshopsaloon.com Ryan Oyer 9 p.m. The Office, 901 Carter St. (423) 634-9191 The Most Important Band In The World 9 p.m. SkyZoo, 5709 Lee Hwy. (423) 468-4533 skyzoochattanooga.com Power Players 9:30 p.m. Sugar’s Ribs, 507 Broad St. (423) 508-8956 sugarsribs.com Convertibull 9:30 p.m. Pokey’s, 918 Sahara Drive, Cleveland (423) 476-6059 Common Ground 10 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Road (423) 499-9878 budssportsbar.com Kontraband, DJ Reggie Reg 10 p.m. Raw, 409 Market St. (423) 756-1919
sat 03.16 Thousand Foor Krutch, Love And Death, The Letter Black, The Wedding, Covered Scars, Face Like Failure 6 p.m. The Warehouse, 6626 Hunter Road warehousevenue.com Nick Lutsko & The Andrew Jackson 5, Lon Eldridge 7:30 p.m. The Camp House, 1427 Williams St. (423) 702-8081 thecamphouse.com Shawn Gallaway 8 p.m. Charles and Myrtle’s Coffeehouse, 105 McBrien Road (423) 892-4960 christunity.org/events Jim Hurst, Rob Ickes 8 p.m. Barking Legs Theatre, 1307 Dodds Ave. (423) 624-5347 barkinglegs.org One Night Stand Band 9 p.m. Jack A’s Chop Shop Saloon, 742 Ashland Terrace, (423) 713-8739 jackaschopshopsaloon.com Rosedale Remedy 9 p.m. SkyZoo,
5709 Lee Hwy. (423) 468-4533 skyzoochattanooga.com Strung Like A Horse, Red Clay Revival 9 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400 Power Players 9:30 p.m. Sugar’s Ribs, 507 Broad St. (423) 508-8956 sugarsribs.com The Communicators Present: That 90s Show 9:30 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. rhythm-brews.com Amber Fults 10 p.m. The Office, 901 Carter St. (423) 634-9191 Common Ground 10 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Road (423) 499-9878 budssportsbar.com Kontraband, DJ Reggie Reg 10 p.m. Raw, 409 Market St. (423) 756-1919
sun 03.17 One Stop Pub Crawl: Dennis Massengale, Time Neal 2 p.m. Jack A’s Chop Shop Saloon, 742 Ashland Terrace, (423) 713-8739 jackaschopshopsaloon.com Molly Maguires, John Lathim and Company, The Fabled Canelands, Olta, The Punknecks The Pint is Chattanooga’s Irish pub, so it only makes sense owner Matt Lewis would pull out all the stops for St. Patrick’s Day. The music begins at 2 p.m. and continues until midnight, with headliner The Molly Maguires topping a bill of four bands. It’s no secret Lewis owns some of the best bars in Chattanooga—The Pint, the Terminal Brewhouse and the Hair of the Dog Pub (as well as the Mean Mug coffeehouse)—so he’s offering pub-crawlers a tour of all three today aboard a
»P12 chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 11
LIVE MUSIC MARCH THU. JILL ANDREWS 9p 14 with HUMMING HOUSE
15 16 SPIRIT FAMILY REUNION TUE. 9p 19 THU. NICK LUTSKO 9:30p 20 ROAD TO NIGHTFALL
FRI. FINALISTS COMPETE, WINNER CHOSEN 8p FRI. THAT 90’S SHOW THE COMMUNICATORS PLAY THE HITS 9:30p GUITARS, FIDDLES, ACCORDIONS
901 Carter St (Inside Days Inn) 423-634-9191 Thursday, March 14: 9 p.m. Open Mic with Hap Henninger Friday, March 15: 9pm Ryan Oyer Saturday, March 16: 10pm Amber Fults Tuesday, March 19: 7pm
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double-decker bus (even it that’s so very British). Food and drink specials hapen at all three locations downtown. Great music, no hokey shamrocks or leprechauns—just an honest pint and honest music. 2 p.m.-Midnight The Honest Pint, 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-4192 thehonestpint.com Lotus, Summer Dregs 8 p.m. Track 29, 1400 Market St. (423) 266-4323 track29.co Elk Milk, Penicillin Baby 9 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400 Pee Wee Moore & Friends 10 p.m. Raw, 409 Market St. (423) 756-1919
mon 03.18 Citizen Cope 8 p.m. Track 29, 1400 Market St. (423) 266-4323 track29.co Craig & Friends 7 p.m. Sugar’s Ribs, 507 Broad St. (423) 508-8956 sugarsribs.com DJ Spicoli 10 p.m. Raw, 409 Market St. (423) 756-1919
THE PULSE IS GIVING AWAY 3 PAIRS OF TICKETS AND 2 VIP TICKETS TO FORECASTLE FEST. VISIT OUR FACEBOOK PAGE ON MARCH 14 FOR DETAILS.
RAW ROCKING THE NOOG SINCE 2003
Wendell Matthews 7 p.m. North Chatt Cat, 346 Frazier Ave. (423) 266-9466 Spirit Family Reunion 9 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St.
wed 03.20 Norma Jean, Amity, Encounters, You Can’t Miss The Bear 7:30 p.m. Cloud Springs Deli, 4097 Cloud Springs Road, Ringgold, Ga. (706) 956-8128 Ryan Boss 8 p.m. Acoustic Café, 61 RBC Drive, Ringgold, Ga. (706) 965-2065 ringgoldacoustic.com Soul Party: Vinly DJ Night 9 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400 Josh Lewis 9 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Road (423) 499-9878 budssportsbar.com Jet W Lee, Endelouz, The Bird Wings 9 p.m. The Honest Pint, 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-4192 thehonestpint.com Convertibull 9 p.m. The Palms 6925 Shallowford Road (423) 499-5055 thepalmsathamilton.com Nick Lutsko and The Sam Jackson 5 9:30 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. rhythm-brews.com Karaoke with DJ “O” 10 p.m. SkyZoo, 5709 Lee Hwy. (423) 468-4533 skyzoochattanooga.com Johnathan Wimpee, Andy Elliot 10 p.m. Raw, 409 Market St. (423) 756-1919
municipal civic centers and auditoriums were the only venues capable of holding significant crowds, and towns like Chattanooga were added to a long list of mid-size cities where bands could reliably swoop in to collect a handsome paycheck for a night in between their major stops in bigger cities. And fans reveled. Hundreds of bands— some now legend, others long forgotten—packed the Auditorium with fans, but those days ended in the early 1980s with the rise of the UTC Arena (better known as The Roundhouse in those days), Chattanooga’s first large-scale venue. Kenny Rogers opened the Arena (since rechristened the McKenzie Arena) in 1982, and Riverbend was born that same year. Jumper told me the Auditorium suffered a crisis during this period. It had again fallen into disrepair and under the shadow of the Arena—where fewer but bigger-name bands could fill its 10,000 seats— the Auditorium took a hard hit. Jumper said veteran manager Clyde Hawkins retired and his protégé and successor, David Johnson, switched gears, offering up the Auditorium as a home for touring Broadway productions. By the mid-1980s, the
THU • MAR 14 423 Bass Love FRI • MAR 15 KONTRABAND 1st Floor DJ REGGIE REG 2nd Floor SAT • MAR 16 KONTRABAND 1st Floor DJ REGGIE REG 2nd Floor SUN • MAR 17 PEE WEE MOORE & FRIENDS Live on the 1st Floor MON & TUE • MAR 18/19 DJ SPICOLI Dancing on the 2nd Floor WED • MAR 20 JOHNATHAN WIMPEE & ANDY ELLIOT Open Players Jams
tWO fLOOrS • One big party • Live MuSic • dancing • 409 Market St • 423.756.1919 open 7 days a week » full menu until 2am » 21+ » smoking allowed 12 • The Pulse • march 14-20, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com
Auditorium was due another renovation and a coalition of public and private groups poured $7 million into an upgrade. After an 18-month renovation, the Auditorium was rededicated on Jan. 31, 1991. The major change was that the Auditorium had been converted from an all-purpose exhibition hall, with a flat floor and movable seating, to a sloped concert hall with permanent seating and greatly improved sightlines. Concerts should have poured in again. But that didn’t happen with any regularity. Broadway tours, stage shows, comedians and musical superstars such as Bob Dylan and Prince appeared now and then—but times changed. Bigger cities built bigger arenas, concerts moved from those arenas to stadiums and eventually to open-air festivals, and smaller venues such as the Auditorium became the havens of legacy acts and no longer a vital prospect on every band’s itinerary. Of course, it didn’t help that Chattanooga had drifted into an economic and cultural funk. Along the way, the city’s three major venues—the Auditorium, the Tivoli Theatre and McKenzie Arena—drifted into the hands of poor management. Each awaited— and still do—promoters to approach them, a strategy that guarantees dark halls and very dark days for con-
cert-loving Chattanoogans. Ironically, major touring acts have come around to a 1970’s economic reality— they have to tour—and at no time since then, Jumper said, have bands old and new been willing to revisit such halls as the Auditorium. “There aren’t a zillion bands that can fill arenas,” Jumper said—but there are hundreds of bands who might kill to play the city’s venues. “The best 3,700- to 4,000-seat venues—which the Auditorium is—those are the places that bands want to play because they can sell ’em out. The Auditorium is beautiful and has great acoustics—it’s the perfect concert venue. It’s sad it sits empty most of the time.” His answer? While he has no political or business interests in Chattanooga or it’s venues, Jumper’s formidable experience and instincts all point to one key message and the missing element: management. “There’s no active booking,” he said. “You’ve got to have a manager out there who’ll shake hands with promoters and concerts will happen quickly.” Chattanooga, Jumper said, began as B market in the 1960s and ’70s, then fell to a C market and it has now earned a solid D (if not an F in The Pulse’s opinion). But all that could be turned around with the right managers, Jumper said, who
could spark a resuscitated effort to fill these venues, turning them from dark halls hosting sporadic, prebooked, family-style shows and the odd ’80s band into vibrant venues filled with concerts by popular new bands. And all that could exist, well, in concert. “Look at Track 29,” Jumper said. “They’ve done an amazing job and they’re being recognized not just regionally, but nationally.” Indeed, Jumper said, the popularity of Track 29 has made Chattanooga a hot prospect on the tour schedules of many bands, creatively booked by AC Entertainment, the agency that created Bonnaroo and which also books the Tennessee Theatre in Knoxville. “AC Entertainment really knows how to book acts for specific venues,” Jumper said. Jumper seemed surprised that the city and UTC had not learned a valuable lesson from Track 29, a venue concert-goers will continue to flock to as the Auditorium, Tivoli and the Arena remain dark. Even Track 29 doesn’t want that. The sad news is that if Chattanooga does not heed Jumper’s advice, the only place you’ll hear about the days Chattanooga rocked is on long-dormant Internet message boards. • Richard Winham has the week off. His column will return next week.
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chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 13
A Return to Urban Dreaming? After years of neglect under Ron Littlefield, will Andy Berke embrace urban design as part of his agenda? By Rich Bailey
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can’t shake the feeling that Chattanooga right now is at a hinge point. I’m not sure a hinge is the best image, but there it is. Which way will the door swing? I see two hinges, actually. They coincide with the turning of the electoral wheel of fortune into and out of the Littlefield administration. There have been plenty of other inflection points in Chattanooga’s renaissance, when dice were rolled, risks were taken and directions changed: Riverbend’s 1981 predecessor “Five Nights in Chattanooga,” the Vision2000 and Moccasin Bend Task Force community planning exercises, the Tennessee Aquarium’s opening in 1992. But most of those began before official Chattanooga was fully on board with this renaissance thing. Even with foundation backing, many of these initiatives—including the Aquarium, when it was first proposed—were way outside the mainstream. It’s only since Mayor Gene Roberts’ 1983-97 tenure ended that mayors have explicitly claimed the role (for better or worse) as bandleader-in-chief for the city’s renaissance. While Mayors Kinsey and Corker had their share of successes, failures and controversies, their administrations didn’t change the arc of Chattanooga’s narrative. The Littlefield years were such a turn for the worse on so many fronts that they must be con-
14 • The Pulse • march 14-20, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com
sidered qualitatively different. After Littlefield threw that Although populist antibomb (plus a few others) into Lookout Mountain sentiment the collection of city agencies, has always been around, Litthe foundations and RiverCity tlefield was unique Company that comin recent politics prised Chattanooga’s for making it a cenurban revitalization terpiece of his caminfrastructure, there paign. To some dewere more than a gree it might have few weeks of hand been inevitable since COMMENTARY wringing. But before his chief opponent in long new agencies 2005, Ann Coulter, had been a were created with foundaRiverCity Company executive. tion backing: CreateHere and But Littlefield went deep green|spaces simultaneously into those toxic waters, porworked around the new lack traying himself as an antiof city enthusiasm and tried to Mountain populist while mend fences and bring the city gathering support from develback to the table as a willing (if opers who resented being told smaller) player in the drama what to do by Stroud Watson, that was being moved forward RiverCity Company’s urban primarily by others. designer who had been given For example, the city requasi-official design oversight paired curbs and sidewalks by Kinsey and Corker for much to help kick off the commerof downtown development. cial revival of Main Street. Some developers resented Groundwork for Main Street’s Watson telling them their best comeback had been laid by efforts to cash in on the downyears of neighborhood-fotown renaissance with suburcused housing development by ban-style projects wouldn’t cut Chattanooga Neighborhood it. Instead of trying to learn Enterprise (which Littlefield how to develop effectively in stopped), and the work conan urban setting, they comtinued with the presence and plained and supported Littleactivities of CreateHere and field’s campaign. One of Littlegreen|spaces, as well as varifield’s very first acts as mayor ous incentives from foundawas the very public sacking of tions. Watson. The urbanist who had If the first hinge is defined done more to shape the form of in retrospect by all the things the rejuvenated city than anyLittlefield took a wrecking one else went out on his ear. ball to and by those creative
work-arounds, the second hinge is defined not just by his departure, but because so many things are in play now and awaiting Andy Berke’s response. The economic ripples from Volkswagen and other new industries are just beginning. EPB’s gig-speed Internet is getting national media attention and starting to spin off companies. The Lyndhurst and Benwood foundations are refocusing. A three-state, 16-county economic growth initiative is just getting started. RiverCity Company last year restarted big public urban design thinking with their Urban Design Challenge. What Chattanooga’s visionary urban planning has done in the past is to help the city dream. The methods may be invisible to most non-professionals, but the results are not: the Aquarium and its surrounding blocks, Coolidge Park, Walnut Street Bridge, the riverfront, the Riverwalk, the first few blocks of a revived Main Street, the Southside, Stringer’s Ridge. The visible part of that iceberg may look like the result of just holding a few public meetings, creating a plan and building it out. But effective public engagement is best understood as a structured way of helping people dream about a new city. For the dream to work, it has to emerge simultaneously not just from the heads of designers, developers and investors, but also from regular people who couldn’t care less about design and development. It’s a crazy balancing act, and it needs to happen again. That’s what I want to see from the new mayor: a return to the kind of urban dreaming that reshapes the city. Not instead of dealing with crime, education and economic development, but as an integral part of the whole agenda. When urban design is done well, it draws everything else in and supports other priorities.
Looking for Mr. Goodscript Even with 12 writers, the script for ETC’s new production, ‘Sight for Sore Eyes,’ needs a second look By Janis Hashe
nsemble Theatre of Chattanooga has created a tradition of company-generated scripts. I did not see “Lunch Money,” which was themed around bullying, but I saw and very much liked “Have A Seat,” about homelessness. The newest ensemble-created script, “Sight for Sore Eyes,” currently playing at ETC’s Eastgate Town Center space, demonstrates both the strengths and weaknesses of this theatrical model. Twelve people are listed as having helped write the script, and there are two directors, ETC producing partners Christy Gallo and John Thomas Cecil. Their inspiration this time is retinitis pigmentosa, an eye disease that slowly (or in this case, not so slowly) causes blindness. A 32-year-old man, Martin, has been diagnosed with the disease. He’s now on his third doctor’s opinion, but they are all the same—he’s got it, and it’s progressing rapidly. The story revolves around Martin’s “stages
It’s well worth a trip to Brainerd Road to help support the only place in town currently attempting original, ensemblegenerated work.
of grief” reactions to his condimoving. tion and how it also affects his As Paulie, Dakota Brown makes pregnant wife Riley, his a welcome return to the good friend and brothstage. Dakota Brown er-in-law Paulie, and is one of the funniest additionally, his dead people alive and watchmother and unborn ing her become increaschild. ingly frustrated in a losHunter Rodgers as ing game of cards with THEATRE Martin delivers yet anRodgers’ Martin is the other seemingly effortless, real highlight of this show. performance and is unafraid to Unfortunately, in my opinion, make his character’s introspecall of the women’s roles are undertion and yes, whining, annoying developed. Robbye Lewis makes a as well as sometimes funny and valiant stab at her Doctor/Crazy
Dead Mother/Older Riley combo, but even this usually wonderful actress can’t make theatre magic with lines that sound false and characters that are one-note. (Though Mom does have her moments.) The same problem holds for Andrea-Taylor Ward as Riley. Her character goes nowhere and aside from her being portrayed by her husband as virtually a saint, we know little about her. Makenzie Young gets to play the couple’s unborn child (whose name is one of the funnier running jokes), but again, is dealing with a character who is really rather bland for someone who may well be facing the same fate as her father. I liked the script’s excursions into fantasy and, as always, I admire the spirit behind ETC’s purpose. But as it is, this script lacks an arc and needs a good punching into shape. Yet it’s well worth a trip to Brainerd Road to help support the only place in town currently attempting original, ensemble-generated work. In theatre, along with everything else: Eyes on the prize. “Sight for Sore Eyes” $20, $15 students 7:30 p.m. March 15-16, 22 & 31; 2:30 p.m. March 16 & 24 Ensemble Theatre of Chattanooga 5600 Brainerd Road (423) 987-5141 ensembletheatre ofchattanooga.com
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DAILY DRINK SPECIALS
MON & TUE: 1/2 PRICED BEER WED: 1/2 PRICED WINE THUR: 1/2 PRICED MARGARITAS & WELL/CALL DRINKS FRI & SAT: 1/2 PRICED BEER & HOT SAKE SUN: 1/2 PRICED HOUSE WINE & HOT SAKE
CHECK O U R D A ILY SPE C IA L S AT T O T T O N O O G A . C O M • 3 3 0 F R A Z I E R AV E • S TE 1 24 • 423.508.8898 • TO TTO N O O G A .CO M chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 15
Arts Entertainment CALENDAR@CHATTANOOGAPULSE.COM
THU 03.14 “Beauty Beyond Nature: The Glass Art of Paul Stankard” (Through April 28) 10 a.m.-8 p.m. Hunter Museum, 10 Bluff View (423) 267-0968 huntermuseum.org “I Guess You Had To Be There: An Installation Art Exhibition” (Through April 27) 11 a.m.-5 p.m. AVA Gallery, 30 Frazier Ave. (423) 265-4282 avarts.org Lee University Vocal Recital 6 p.m. Lee University, 1250 Parker St. Cleveland (423) 614-8000 leeuniversity.edu “St. Patrick’s Purse” 6 p.m. Stratton Hall, 3146 Broad St. (423) 899-9818 strattonhall.com Gripology 101: Film Chattanooga Professional Seminar 6:30 p.m. Downtown YMCA, 301 W. 6th St. (423) 894-8927 chattanoogafilmsociety.org String Theory 6:30 p.m. Hunter Museum, 10 Bluff View (423) 267-0968 huntermuseum.org Ringling Brothers & Barnum & Bailey’s Circus 7 p.m. UTC McKenzie Arena, 720 E. 4th St. (423) 266-6627 ringling.com Author/journalist Benjamin Skinner on Human Trafficking 7:30 p.m. Thatcher Chapel Hall, Southern Adventist University, 4881 Taylor Circle (423) 236-2768 southern.edu Kristin Key 7:30 p.m. The Comedy Catch, 3224 Brainerd Road (423) 629-2233 thecomedycatch.com
fri 03.15 Ringling Brothers & Barnum & Bailey’s Circus 7 p.m. UTC McKenzie Arena, 720 E. 4th St. (423) 266-6627
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LOOKOUTS FAN FEST Ready for some baseball? The Lookouts will hold the team’s first-ever Fan Fest from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday at AT&T Field. The free event includes a full line-up of fun activities for fans. The Lookouts begin their 2013 regular season on April 4 against the Huntsville Stars at AT&T Field.
ringling.com “Sight for Sore Eyes” 7:30 p.m. Ensemble Theatre of Chattanooga, 5600 Brainerd Road (423) 987-5141 ensembletheatre ofchattanooga.com “Nora” 7:30 p.m. Theater for the New South, 1400 Cowart St. theaterforthenewsouth.com Kristin Key 7:30 & 9:30 p.m. The Comedy Catch, 3224 Brainerd Road (423) 629-2233 thecomedycatch.com Vince Morris 9:30 p.m. Vaudeville Cafe, 138 Market St. (423) 517-1839 funnydinner.com
sat 03.16 Shamrock City
8:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Rock City Gardens, 1400 Patten Road (706) 820-2531 seerockcity.com Urban Hike: Landscapes From Vast to Intimate 9 a.m. Hunter Museum, 10 Bluff View (423) 267-0968 huntermuseum.org Rump Run 9:30 a.m. Enterprise South Nature Park, 8015 Volkswagen Dr. (423) 893-3500 rumprun.com Chattanooga Lookouts Fan Fest 10 a.m.-2 p.m. AT&T Field, 201 Power Alley (423) 267-4849 lookouts.com Paper & Fabric Marbling Workshop 10 a.m.-Noon and 1-3 p.m. MACC
809 Kentucky Ave. (423) 886-1959 signalmountainmacc.org East Tennessee Day of Percussion 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Lee University Conn Center, 1053 Church St. Cleveland (423) 614-8340 leeuniversity.edu Maker Day: Thinking In 3-D 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Chattanooga Public Library, 1001 Broad St. (423) 757-5310 chamakers.com St. Patrick’s Day Bike Show Noon-5 p.m. Thunder Creek Harley Davidson, 7720 Lee Hwy. (423) 892-4888 Ringling Brothers & Barnum & Bailey’s Circus 1 & 5 p.m. UTC McKenzie Arena, 720 E. 4th St. (423) 266-6627 ringling.com Georgia Winery: Shamrock Celebration 2-5 p.m. Georgia Winery, 6469 Battlfield Pkwy. (706) 937-WINE georgiawines.com Kristin Key 7 & 9:30 p.m. The Comedy Catch, 3224 Brainerd Road (423) 629-2233 thecomedycatch.com Chatterbugs St. Patrick’s Swing Dance 7-11 p.m. Eastgate Town Center, 5600 Brainerd Road facebook.com/chatterbugsdance “Nora” 7:30 p.m. Theater for the New South, 1400 Cowart St. theaterforthenewsouth.com Lee University Jazz Ensemble 7:30 p.m. Lee University Conn Center, 1053 Church St. Cleveland (423) 614-8340 leeuniversity.edu “Sight for Sore Eyes” 7:30 p.m. Ensemble Theatre of Chattanooga, 5600 Brainerd Road (423) 987-5141 ensembletheatre ofchattanooga.com Jim Hurst & Rob Ickes 8 p.m. Barking Legs Theater, 1307 Dodds Ave.
(423) 624-5347 barkinglegs.org CSO: “Verdi Requiem” 8 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 642-8497 chattanoogasymphony.org Vince Morris 10:30 p.m. Vaudeville Cafe, 138 Market St. (423) 517-1839 funnydinner.com
(423) 425-5242 utc.edu/scea Spring Break Safari 9 a.m.-Noon (Through April 15) Ruby Falls, 1720 S. Scenic Hwy. (423) 821-2544 chattanoogafun.com/spring
tue 03.19 Film Chattanooga Happy Hour Mixer 5-7 p.m. p.m. 212 Market Restaurant, 212 Market St. (423) 894-8927 chattanoogafilmsociety.org CommuniCREATE 6-8 p.m. The Camp House, 1427 Williams St. (423) 425-5242 utc.edu/scea Barger Academy of Arts Forum 7 p.m. The Camp House, 1427 Williams St. (423) 425-5242 utc.edu/scea Patten Performance: Trio Con Brio Copenhagen 7:30-9 p.m. UTC Fine Arts Center, 752 Vine St. (423) 425-4269 utc.edu
sun 03.17 Shamrock City 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Rock City Gardens, 1400 Patten Road (706) 820-2531 seerockcity.com Ringling Brothers & Barnum & Bailey’s Circus 1 & 5 p.m. UTC McKenzie Arena, 720 E. 4th St. (423) 266-6627 ringling.com Chattanooga Coffee Throwdown Championships 2-6 p.m. Thrive Studio, 191 River St. (423) 605-3125 thrivestudio.net “Sight for Sore Eyes” 2:30 p.m. Ensemble Theatre of Chattanooga, 5600 Brainerd Road (423) 987-5141 ensembletheatre ofchattanooga.com Jazz Vespers 5 p.m. St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church, 630 Misssissippi Ave. (423) 886-2281 sttimsignal.com Jim Gaffigan 7:30 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 642-8497 chattanoogaonstage.com
JIM GAFFIGAN The hot comic is hitting the road on his “White Bread Tour” with his wife and five kids in tow. Known for his family-based, observational humor, Gaffigan is a rising star on the stand-up circuit and is filming a pilot for a new TV series based on his life. Gaffigan makes Chattanooga one of the first stops on his tour, where he’ll perform on Sunday at the Tivoli Theatre.
Kristin Key 7:30 p.m. The Comedy Catch, 3224 Brainerd Road (423) 629-2233 thecomedycatch.com
mon 03.18 Story Slam 7 p.m. The Camp House, 1427 Williams St.
wed 03.20 CSO at St. Peter’s School 1 p.m. St. Peter’s Episcopal School, 848 Ashland Terrace (423) 267-8583 chattanoogasymphony.org Kayak Roll Class 6 & 7 p.m. Brainerd Recreation Complex, 1010 N. Moore Road, (423) 425-3600 outdoorchattanooga.com
Freeman Bed & Furniture Grand Opening • March 15, 2013 1800 E. Main St. Tues-Sat 10-5 • Friday 10-7 423.999.2911 • 423.718.2543
Gallery 301 chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 17
Film Gone Wild
The Lookout Wild Film Festival arrives at the intersection of film and outdoor recreation—a perfect fit for Chattanooga By John DeVore
he Chattanooga Choo Choo will host the Lookout Wild Film Festival, presented by Get Out Chattanooga, from March 22-24, with an additional free screening on March 23 at Ross’s Landing. The festival arrives at the intersection of film and outdoor recreation, providing fascinating views and locations, hoping to showcase the wild places of the world and the people who are inspired to explore them.
These films should be of particular interest to outdoor enthusiasts in Chattanooga. One of the Scenic City’s biggest draws is outdoor recreation and there is a wide variety of opportunity for those that love the natural world. “It is natural for Chattanooga to have an outdoor-themed film festival to complement the wealth of outdoor recreation opportunities in the area,” said David Porfiri, president of the Chattanooga Film Society. “Not everyone can scale a rock wall or shoot down heartpounding rapids, but through the film medium, we can still experi-
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“It’s great to show things out west or around the world, but we really want to highlight the things we have here in the Southeast.” Andy Johns
ence it.” The impetus for the festival came together for director Andy Johns last February. “This is an idea that a friend of mine, Luis Carrasco, and I have been kicking around for several years. Chattanooga is such a great town
for young, creative folks and it’s screaming for more film events. It’s also a great town for the outdoor enthusiasts. Those two things come together to get an outdoor/adventure film festival,” he said. When choosing the films for the festival, Johns hoped to show films that combined both intriguing stories and dramatic visuals. “From the beginning, we said we didn’t want to show hours of 60-second clips of kayakers going over waterfalls with techno music in the background. Those clips are all over YouTube, and while there are people doing amazing things, we were committed to presenting stories rather than stunts. I’m a writer and my family is full of story tellers so that’s always been important to me,” he said. “We received about 70 films from 18 countries which wound up being about 40 hours of footage,” Johns added. “The variety was incredible! We had polar exploration, fishing, climate change, social issues, history, water conservation, everything. Films came in from India, to Norway and back again. Some were stunning visually, but lacked the story. Others had good stories, but failed to capture us visually. Some, like many of the films we selected, put both the story and the visual side together. The toughest part of this process has been letting so many filmmakers know that their projects were not selected.” Of the 25 films selected for the festival, there are several from Chattanooga natives, Johns said. “A big part of our mission is to promote outdoor filmmaking in the Southeast. I’m especially proud to say we have filmmakers
from Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and Florida represented, because they are showing places in the films that local folks can go. It’s great to show things out west or around the world, but we really want to highlight the things we have here in the Southeast,” Johns said. “Taylor Kirkpatrick and Hardwick Caldwell, two Chattanooga natives, have one of my favorite films in the festival called ‘The Waters of the Greenstone,’ where they trek across New Zealand to see the country and go fly fishing for trout,” Johns said. Film festivals are an essential part in the ongoing quest to bring the film medium into the spotlight in Chattanooga. The arts community here is already vibrant and the Lookout Wild Film Festival hopes to add a little natural color to the pallet. If successful, the festival could become an annual tradition. “Our plan is to grow a little bigger each year,” Johns said. “There are a handful of large outdoor adventure film festivals out West, but none really in the East. We feel like Chattanooga is the perfect place for something like this to grow into something big. We’ve already been in talks with other groups about parties, contests and other events to add for next year.” Check out the festival and experience something wild while you support local film. Lookout Wild Film Festival One day pass: $5 Weekend pass: $10 March 22-24 Chattanooga Choo Choo 1400 Market St. lookoutfilmfestival.org
DINING OUT CHATTANOOGA
Moe’s Delivers with Flair to Spare With its funky, fun atmosphere and massive burritos, Moe’s wraps up Southwestern food with fresh fare
Moe’s catering brings the same hot, irresistible burritos, delicious tacos and mouth-watering fajitas from their portable fajita bar to your party, church event or even your wedding!
By Michael Thomas
outhwestern cuisine has been a part of the American foodscape since before the Mayflower hit the shores of Massachusetts and is said to be America’s oldest indigenous cuisine. Fast forward to 2013 and Southwestern food is as much a part of the American dining experience as hot dogs and apple pie. Moe’s Southwestern Grill opened its first restaurant in Atlanta just over a decade ago with the goal of providing custommade Southwestern food, using only the freshest ingredients, in a fun and casual atmosphere. It wasn’t long before Moe’s brightly colored signs began to appear all over the country, welcoming customers to try their signature burritos and other Southwestern favorites that can be customized with more than 20 fresh ingredients. But Moe’s is so much more than your typical burrito joint. When you walk through the door you are immediately greeted by their genuinely friendly and enthusiastic staff with shouts of “Welcome to Moe’s!” While they are known for their burritos, fajitas, tacos and nachos, what may surprise you is the quality of the ingredients used in these delicious Southwestern staples. Cage-free, white breast meat chicken,; steroid-free, grain-fed pulled pork, grass-fed sirloin steak and organic marinated tofu are offered, as well as ultra fresh vegetables and additions such as house-made guacamole and roasted corn pico de gallo. Moe’s has a strict no freezers and no microwave’s policy, which means no rubbery meats or watery sauces. And because you pick what ingredients you want as your food is made, your order is perfect every time.
Moe’s has a strict no freezers and no microwave’s policy, which means no rubbery meats or watery sauces. And because you pick what ingredients you want as your food is made, your order is perfect every time. In spite of my serious taco addiction, on my most recent visit I decided to go with their signature burrito, the Homewrecker. I customized this behemoth with delicately seasoned rice, rich black beans, shredded cheese and their roasted corn pico de gallo (which is so good I could eat it all by itself). As the burrito went down the line I had them add shredded lettuce, house-made guacamole, pickled jalapenos and a hit of their secret smoky Chipotle Ranch sauce for an added kick. Once rolled up, this burrito was almost as big as my head, which perfectly matches my oversized burrito cravings. Every bite of this masterpiece of burrito goodness was a festival of flavors that didn’t become monochromatic
Moe’s Southwest Grill Hamilton Place • 1820 Gunbarrel Road (423) 553-6930 UTC Campus • 615 McCallie Ave. (423) 425-4200 Hixson • 5510 Hwy. 153 (423) 875-8757 moeschattanooga.com Moe’s Mobile Food Truck & Catering 1-800-905-2632 catering@moes chattanoooga.com
in my mouth. I could taste each ingredient individually, yet the combination became a taste all its own that is as addictive as it is delicious. As I worked my way through my mountainous burrito, I found my head bobbing along to a classic rock soundtrack and enjoying the cool and colorful paintings of classic rock artist lookalikes on the wall. The fun and casual atmosphere in Moe’s extends from the decor and music to the menu itself, where the items are named after pop culture references from “Seinfeld,” “The Hangover” and “The Three Amigos,” among others. Not only can you get your Southwest food fix at the Gunbarrel, Highway 153, and UTC
campus locations, but Moe’s catering can bring their tasty, fun and funky flavors to you. Moe’s catering brings the same hot, irresistible burritos, delicious tacos and mouth-watering fajitas from their portable fajita bar to your party, church event or even your wedding! They even take care of the plates, napkins and utensils so you can focus on your guests and the barrage of compliments for your superb choice of food. For larger crowds or just for that added wow factor, you can book Moe’s bright yellow, customized food truck, the MoeMobile, to come to your location and throw down the same fun and funky flavors as you get in their stores. Imagine the look on your guests’ faces when they see the Moe’s food truck at your event, passing out their crispy tacos, mammoth burritos and cheesy nachos with reckless abandon. With so many choices for Southwestern and Mexican food, Moe’s stands head and shoulders above the rest. I’m getting some queso dip and guacamole to take home and see if I can bribe my fiancé into having Moe’s cater our wedding. Wish me luck! • Michael Thomas loves burritos, his beard and craft beers. Catch him eating everything but the kitchen sink in and around Chattanooga.
chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 19
Free Will Astrology PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): A source of
fulfillment you will enjoy in the future may seem almost painful when it initially announces its presence. In other words, your next mission may first appear to you as a problem. Your situation has a certain resemblance to that of prolific Russian composer Pyotr Tchaikovsky, who produced a wide variety of enduring works, including symphonies, ballets, operas, and concertos. When he was a precocious child, he was assailed by the melodies and rhythms that frequently surged through his mind. “This music! This music!” he complained to his mother. “Take it away! It’s here in my head and won’t let me sleep!”
ARIES (March 21-April 19): “If it’s stupid and it works, it’s not stupid.” That could turn out to be a useful mantra for you in the coming week. Being pragmatic should be near the top of your priority list, whereas being judgmental should be at the bottom. Here’s another mantra that may serve you well: “Those who take history personally are condemned to repeat it.” I hope you invoke that wisdom to help you escape an oppressive part of your past. Do you have
rob brezsny room for one more inspirational motto, Aries? Here it is: “I am only as strong as my weakest delusion.”
TAURUS (April 20-May 20): Don’t you
just love to watch the spinning of those wheels within wheels within wheels? Aren’t you grateful for the way the ever-churning plot twists keep you alert and ready to shift your attitude at a moment’s notice? And aren’t you thrilled by those moments when fate reveals that its power is not absolute—that your intelligence and willpower can in fact override the seemingly inexorable imperatives of karma? If you are unfamiliar with the pleasures I’ve just described, the coming weeks will be an excellent time to get deeply acquainted.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20): It won’t be a good week to issue unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered demands. And please don’t make peanut butter and jelly a part of your sex life, take a vacation in Siberia, or photocopy your butt and deliver it anonymously to your boss. On the other hand, it will be an excellent time to scrawl motivational poetry on your bedroom wall, stage a
slow-motion pillow fight, and cultivate your ability to be a deep-feeling free-thinker. Other recommended actions: Give yourself a new nickname like Highball or Root Doctor or Climax Master; write an essay on “The Five Things That the Pursuit of Pleasure Has Taught Me;” and laugh uproariously as you completely bypass the void of sadness and the abyss of fear.
CANCER (June 21-July 22): In the mid19th century, prospectors mined for gold in the mountains of western Nevada. The veins weren’t as rich as those in California, but some men were able to earn a modest living. Their work to extract gold from the terrain was hampered by a gluey blue mud that gummed up their machinery. It was regarded as a major nuisance. But on a hunch, one miner took a load of the blue gunk to be analyzed by an expert. He discovered that it contained rich deposits of silver. So began an explosion of silver mining that made many prospectors very wealthy. I suggest you be on the alert for a metaphorical version of blue mud in your sphere, Cancerian: an “inconvenience” that seems to interfere with the treasure you seek, but that is actually quite valuable. LEO
(July 23-Aug. 22): When pioneer filmmaker Hal Roach worked on scripts with his team of writers, he sometimes employed an unusual strategy to overcome writer’s block. He’d bring in a “Wildie” to join them at the conference table. A Wildie was either a random drunk they found wandering around the streets or a person who lived in an insane asylum. They’d engage him in conversation about the story they were working on, and he would provide unexpected ideas that opened their minds to new possibilities. I don’t necessarily recommend that you seek the help of a Wildie, Leo, but I hope you will come up with other ways to spur fresh perspectives. Solicit creative disruptions!
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VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): Is the term
“unconscious mind” a good name for the foundation of the human psyche? Should we really be implying that the vast, oceanic source of everything we think and feel is merely the opposite of the conscious mind? Dreamworker Jeremy Taylor doesn’t think so. He proposes an alternate phrase to replace “unconscious”: “not-yet-speechripe.” It captures the sense of all the raw material burbling and churning in our deep awareness that is not graspable through language. I bring this up, Virgo, because you’re entering a phase when a lot of notyet-speech-ripe stuff will become speechripe. Be alert for it!
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): In 1928, biologist Alexander Fleming launched a medical revolution. He developed the world’s first antibiotic, penicillin, making it possible to cure a host of maladies caused by hostile bacteria. His discovery was a lucky fluke that happened only because he left his laboratory a mess when he went on vacation. While he was gone, a bacteria culture he’d been working with got contaminated by a mold that turned out to be penicillin. I’m thinking that you could achieve a more modest but quite happy accident sometime soon, Libra. It may depend on you allowing things to be more untidy than usual, though. Are you game? SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): “I am iron resisting the most enormous Magnet there is,” wrote the Sufi mystic poet Rumi. He was wistfully bemoaning his own stubborn ignorance, which tricked him into refusing a more intimate companionship with the Blessed Source of all life. I think there’s something similar going on in most of us, even atheists. We feel the tremendous pull of our destiny—the glorious, daunting destination that would take all our strength to achieve and fulfill our deepest longings— and yet we are also terrified to surrender to it. What’s your current relationship to your
Magnet, Scorpio? I say it’s time you allowed it to pull you closer.
(Nov. 22-Dec. 21): NASA used whale oil to lubricate the Hubble Space Telescope and Voyager spacecrafts. There was a good reason: Whale oil doesn’t freeze at the low temperatures found in outer space. While I certainly don’t approve of killing whales to obtain their oil, I want to use this story to make a point. It’s an excellent time for you, too, to use old-school approaches for solving ultra-new-school problems. Sometimes a tried-and-true method works better, or is cheaper, simpler, or more aesthetically pleasing.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): The
theory of the “butterfly effect” proposes that a butterfly flapping its wings in China may ultimately impact the weather in New York. Here’s how the writer Richard Bernstein explains it: “Very slight, nearly infinitesimal variations and the enormous multiplicity of interacting variables produce big differences in the end.” That’s why, he says, “the world is just too complicated to be predictable.” I find this a tremendously liberating idea. It suggests that every little thing you do sends out ripples of influence that help shape the kind of world you live in. The coming week will be an excellent time to experiment with how this works in your daily life. Put loving care and intelligent attention into every little thing.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Former
football quarterback Joe Ayoob holds the world’s record for throwing a paper airplane the longest distance. After it left his hand, the delicate craft traveled over 226 feet. I propose we make Ayoob your patron saint and role model for the coming week. From what I can tell, you will have a similar challenge, at least metaphorically: blending power and strength with precision and finesse and control. It’s time to move a fragile thing or process as far as possible.
“That’s a Tough One”—actually, a tough two. Across
1. “Welcome Back, Kotter” star Kaplan 5. Unpleasant atmosphere 11. He hosted a reality show called “I Pity the Fool” 14. Vows sometimes rushed in comedies 15. “The Other ___ Girl” (2008 Natalie Portman movie) 16. “Star-Spangled Banner” contraction 17. Five on a dude’s foot? 19. Clay, later 20. Passover dinner 21. “Put Your Head On My Shoulder” singer Paul 22. “Kilroy Was Here” band 23. Co-star of Morgan and Baldwin
25. Chunky milkshake ingredient 27. Words before “fire” or “emergency” 32. BFFs 35. “Are we there yet?” answer, maybe 36. Time off from the group? 40. Former NHL star Robitaille 41. Thorny trees 42. Co. whose mascot is Nipper 43. The right amount to be serendipitous? 45. “Win, Lose or Draw” host Convy 46. Herb that’s also a name 47. Old-school fastener at the roller disco 49. Hit for ZZ Top
52. Bread for a reuben 53. Madcap 56. Sitcom starring a singer 59. Big name in handbags 63. Vexation 64. Ad line that caused a Muppet to answer “You bet me do!”? 66. Turn down 67. More level 68. “So Big” author Ferber 69. Nyan ___ (internet meme) 70. Nissan model 71. Awestruck response
1. Band events 2. “For two,” on sheet music 3. Woody’s last name on “Cheers”
4. Miami Sound Machine surname 5. Two-year degree type (hidden in REMEMBER) 6. New Rochelle, New York college 7. Actor Tudyk of “Suburgatory” 8. Timex competitor 9. Birthday balloon material 10. Ques. counterpart 11. Drawbridge site 12. Bank (on) 13. Cereal that rarely got eaten by its mascot 18. You can dig ‘em 22. Like some gummy candy 24. “That smells horrible” reaction 26. Recessions 27. Spot in the water 28. Mad Libs category 29. Apres-ski drink 30. Spoken 31. Make it really clear? 33. Jeter at short 34. “___ bleu!” 37. Candle end 38. Senegal’s capital 39. Singer Perry 41. “A Death in the Family” playwright James 44. Like some truth 45. Party item with a tap 48. What this glue has 50. Where oranges are grown 51. Movie with the line “What’s in the box?” 53. Stuff in lozenges 54. Opera highlight 55. “Friday After ___” 57. Like paperclips 58. Rival of Dell 60. Opera set in Egypt 61. Reading rooms 62. Posthaste 64. Primus leader Claypool 65. “... ___ mouse?” © 2013 Jonesin’ Crosswords (editor@ jonesincrosswords.com)
h THE PULSE 2013 SHORT STORY CONTEST • 1,000 words • Southern theme. • Submit stories in document format, include your name, phone number and a brief biography. Email-only entries. The judges’ top choice will be published on April 18 in The Pulse. Email to: firstname.lastname@example.org Subject: 2013 Short Story Contest Deadline: March 28, 2013
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RICK DAVIS GOLD & DIAMONDS 5301 Brainerd Rd at McBrien Rd • 423.499.9162 chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 21
Life in the Noog
More Gluten, Please!
he other night while having dinner at one of the Noog’s fancier restaurants, I was presented with the wine list, the evening’s menu and then the evening’s “gluten-free” menu. Just out of curiosity I glanced at and noticed it was roughly the same as the regular menu, only minus breadstuffs. OK, I get it. I couldn’t help but think at the time that up until a couple of years ago I had no idea what the hell gluten was, and I doubt many of you did either. However, suddenly there’s a growing number of people dead set on keeping gluten away from their gut at all costs. For those of you who don’t know what gluten is, it’s basically the “glue” that holds dough together. It’s the substance that gives dough it’s elasticity and what helps it rise when baking. In addition to bread loaves and the like, gluten can be commonly found in pizza crust. In fact, a local pizza joint is where I first heard of it. “Proud to offer gluten-free pizza” the sign said. When I did a little research and discovered gluten’s purpose, I figured a crust free of it must be like eating the toppings directly off of the pizza box. Apparently for some, gluten has an adverse affect on the body. Common symptoms include bloating, abdominal discomfort or pain, diarrhea, muscular disturbances and bone or joint pain. Of course, eating too much of anything will produce those same symptoms. Maybe pushing away from the feedbag a little sooner is one solution, but I’m no doctor. I realize that some of you out there are honestly allergic to gluten. In fact, it’s less than 1 percent according to my trusted source, Wikipedia. The rest of you are just gluten intolerant.
22 • The Pulse • march 14-20, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com
Lactose intolerance is a much more commonly recognized affliction. Like gluten, if cheese and milk make you feel as big as a cow or as loose as a goose, then maybe you should avoid those products. But again, I’m not qualified to dole out medical advice. Intolerance to certain foods and food allergies are as old as the concept of eating itself. I’m sure there was at least one kid in my elementary school growing up who was deathly allergic to peanuts. Regardless, I was still allowed to bring a peanut butter sandwich to school for lunch. It was that kid’s sole responsibility not to trade me his Twinkie for it. Nowadays, if one kid at an elementary school has a nut allergy not only will the school not serve anything nut related, but his classmates aren’t allowed to bring anything to school with nuts in it just in case he forgets and trades his Fruit Roll Up for a Nutter Butter and winds up convulsing on the cafeteria floor. Not to make light of a horrible, life-threatening allergy (because I love peanut butter), I just think these days we tend to take food-related issues a little too seriously. Like the
whole vegan/vegetarian thing. I understand that with all we know about how food interacts with our bodies that shoving red meat into it every day is probably not a good idea in the long run. But chicken, fish, eggs and cheese are legitimate, sort-of-healthy sources of protein—something the body needs plenty of. So, if you won’t eat any of that and you’re not eating beans and nuts like it’s your job, you’re probably not getting enough protein. I know that some of the biggest, scariest animals of all time—including some dinosaurs—are vegan. Their diets consist of everything but their mates in the wild. No one really knows why some animals are vegans by nature while others are hardcore carnivores. And no one really knows why some of us choose to eat meat and some don’t. I blame pretentiousness. Being vegan or even vegetarian just for the sake of being different or hip or whatever is just as predictably lame as wearing a wool toboggan cap off the back of your head. Evolution has trained our species to eat all kinds of other species— and like it. I’m sorry, but if I were a gluten-intolerant, lactose-intolerant, nut-allergic pretentious vegan I’d be dead by now—or at least very, very hungry. • Chuck Crowder is a local writer and man about town. His opinions are his own.
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chattanoogapulse.com • MARCH 14-20, 2013 • The Pulse • 23