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April 18, 2013

Vol. 10 • No. 16

Chattanooga’s Weekly Alternative

Southern lit


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THIS WEEK april 18-24 IN THE PULSE

ADVERTISING

Director of Sales Mike Baskin Account Executives Amy Allara • Chee Chee Brown • Eric Foster Jessica Gray • John Holland • Rick Leavell Jerry Ware

CONTACT

EDITORIAL

Editor & Creative Director Bill Ramsey Operations & Webmaster Mike McJunkin Contributors Rich Bailey • Rob Brezsny • Zachary Cooper Chuck Crowder • John DeVore • Janis Hashe Matt Jones • Mike McJunkin • Ernie Paik Sarah Skates • Alex Teach • Richard Winham Photographers Kim Hunter • Josh Lang Cartoonists & Illustrators Max Cannon • David Helton • 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 info@chattanoogapulse.com Calendar calendar@chattanoogapulse.com 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 music, the arts, entertainment, culture and local news. The Pulse is available free of charge, limited to one copy per reader. No person without written permission from the publisher 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 • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • The Pulse • 3


BOWL

THE fun

Chattanooga Market opens season with CSO The opening of the Chattanooga Market on Sunday, April 21, is the our reassurance that spring is in bloom. Hang up the jackets, get out the sandals and sunblock, and tune up that old violin. For more than 10 years, the opening of the market signifies the arrival of spring with farmfresh produce, outdoor family fun and community fellowship. The Chattanooga Market will host more than 50 farms each week bringing a variety of produce, meats and cheeses while keeping the selection varied and fresh. Every Sunday of the season boasts over 130 artisans offering

the TALK OF THE NOOG NEWS • COMMENTARY • BULLETINS & PUSH NOTIFICATIONS AT DIAL-UP SPEED facebook/chattanoogapulsE • TWITTER @CHATTAPULSE EMAIL LOVE LETTERS, ADVICE & TRASH TALK TO CREATIVE@CHATTANOOGAPULSE.COM

their unique crafts, arts, jewelry, wood-works, gourmet foods and many other locally made specialties. Live music is always a staple at Chattanooga Market with local and region musicians on the stage for two free shows weekly. Local eateries at the Market Cafe have become a hot spot for lunch and new “foodie” additions include a variety of food trucks offering a mix of cultural foods to please any palette. Opening day will be a day to remember for the Market with a special engagement by the Chattanooga Symphony. Pull out your trumpet, tune up your violin, and dust off the snare drum to join the CSO in a community play along. The event is open to all amateur musicians and will take place at 1, 2 and 3 p.m. It’s a unique opportunity to play with a leading orchestra of over 60-plus musicians led by

conductor Kayoko Dan. A registration fee of $25 assures a chair, a commemorative T-shirt and a ticket to the CSO’s April 27 performance of “Elvis & Mahler.” Amateur musicians should register online at chattanoogamarket. com. The CSO Youth Orchestra Ensemble will perform on the EPB stage from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. with an instrument “petting zoo” from 1 to 3:30 p.m.

Work

Creative and stuck at home? Working at home can be challenging. Temptations are many and there’s little to turn your mind or head the other way. But if you’re the creative type and want the comfort of others and miss an “office space,” enter Chattanoooga Workspace. Located on the 300 block of Sixth Street across from the downtown YMCA. The space is already home to new creatives and is interested in opening another floor of studios in the coming months. Chattanooga Workspace allows anyone to rent desk space in an open, collaborative environment daily, weekly or monthly. The fee for space includes access to Wi-Fi, printers, a coffee bar and even mail services. For more information, visit chattanoogaworkspace.com.

eat

Tupelo Honey comes to town Tupelo Honey, one of our favorite Asheville restaurants, will bring its eclectic take on the Southern plate to Warehouse Row in the fall. The restaurant will be the third out-of-market

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location for the award-winning restaurant and is a welcome culinary addition to the Scenic City. Loyal followers of this creative, made-from-scratch eatery have been abuzz about the rumored Chattanooga location for months. While favorite dishes from the iconic Asheville restaurant will be available at Warehouse Row, the new Tupelo Honey Cafe’s architecture and spirited atmosphere will be decidedly authentic to Chattanooga. “We are committed to fresh, flavorful food made from scratch,” said Stephen Frabitore, president of Tupelo Honey Cafe, noting the restaurant’s reputation for creative Southern fare. “We are excited to become part of the fabric of the Chattanooga community and a place for friends and family to make lasting memories around our dinner table.” In recent years, Warehouse Row has lured some of the region’s best independent retailers

to Chattanooga’s urban core and transformed the shopping destination into an eclectic mix of fine retail and restaurants. This success enticed the owner of Tupelo Honey Cafe, a restaurant concept that has an unapologetically inventive take on all that is Southern, to choose the prime retail location for the fifth restaurant. Tupelo Honey Cafe added a Knoxville location in October 2012 to its two Asheville locations. The group plans to open a Greenville, S.C., location in June, the Chattanooga location this fall and a Johnson City location in 2014. The new Tupelo Honey Cafe will employ around 100 locals to staff its two-story Warehouse Row location. The 5,500 squarefoot restaurant will be located at the motor-court entrance of the building and will offer indoor and patio seating for up to 150 guests. Construction is scheduled to begin this spring.


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On the Beat

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Training Day P

olice officers are required to submit to a rigorous battery of annual seminars and testing to meet state qualifications to remain certified. It’s a compendium of classes assembled to bring us up to date with current laws and trends, to break the rust off of seldomused skills, and most importantly of all, to meet the requirements set forth in dozens of lawsuits against us over the years in which additional training was mandated. This training usually exists to excuse the fantastic sums of money people received so as to not make them feel like asshole profiteers, since many of the lawsuits were over someone’s death which mostly was a result of their low skill set in criminal activity, sometimes related to the customer dissatisfaction (aka “unhappiness”), and the 1-in-10 occurrence in which the cop just screwed up. The only requirement of this week of training is to act like it “sucks” to get paid to shoot guns for a whole day and drive

cars you don’t own as fast as poop down a chute on another day. Real “torture.” In the course of such, old (and ranking) officers are put together with junior (read:

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peon) officers whom in many cases they’ve never met, and the exchange of bullshit begins. Personally, I love it. It’s the only way the new guys can connect with stories from the past; it’s completely tribal in nature. It was through these talks that I now reflected on how policing has greatly matured as a profession. (Relax, “progressive” readers; allow me to explain.) A few decades ago they issued axe handles out of garbage cans on the back lot of police headquarters to assist in quelling race-riots that plagued Chattanooga. I can safely mention this now because literally all the administrators responsible for that era are deceased. The participants were holdouts from an ugly time in our nation’s history in which not only did the persecutors have to learn new habits, but the victims as well. If the garbage stank in the summer, it was nothing less than oppression and residents naturally responded by lighting Dumpsters on fire, throwing bottles and shooting rifles and handguns. While good for an occasional prank or birthday party, I think we’d all agree you can’t just go around doing these kinds of things in a Civilized Society. These pick and axe handles were used to intimidate groups of people who set fire to their own homes, then shot at both the police officers and firefighters who arrived there as a result. Interestingly, I am also not aware of one incident from either side in which said farm implements were actually used for their threatened purpose. While a barbaric tactic to some, it was apparently effective in the end, like the thousands of unused ICBM’s that ended the Cold War. You see, just as a petulant 18-month-old will not listen to

the sweet reason and melodic logic of Barney the Dinosaur, some adults won’t listen to soothing words and extended palms of friendship either, no matter how much we want them to. Out of this box unorthodox solutions were born. (And while we’re talking about it, who the hell shoots at firemen anyway? Why don’t you go around stomping on baby chicks and spitting on babies? People slobber all over themselves loving them because there is no reason not to like them, unless you are the parent of a teenage girl.) Police now regularly undergo sensitivity training, diversity training, conflictresolution training, roll-call bulletins on racial profiling, crisis-intervention training, ethics training, use of force training and methods of better ways to train trainers to train. And still more training is recommended when police respond to someone shooting other people by shooting back at them. I understand, though. Holding “society” accountable is not as easy as mandating training for police, so I can’t blame our system when it is held only to the path of least resistance as opposed to the right moral or ethical one. What can go wrong, anyway? I leaned back in my chair in the cool darkness of my room, sipping chilled silver tequila through a mixer straw and looking up and over at the ceiling with the hint of a smile, thinking of how I spent the past week on a form of paid vacation doing all the things I thought were exciting a long time ago … and smiling because they still were. I win. • 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.


Celebration of Southern Literature

She’s Not There

Lookout Mountain writer Jamie Quatro wants to show you more, but she can’t ByRich Bailey

J

amie Quatro and her new book, “I Want To Show You More,” are red hot right now in the literary world. In March she received a full-page review in The New York Times Book Review and three pages in The New Yorker. At the Celebration of Southern Literature, Quatro is coteaching a pre-celebration short story workshop with her mentor, Jill McCorkle, and is a featured guest at one of 11 fundraising dinners in private homes. Reviewers have called her “outstanding” and “brilliant,” and praised the book—15 linked stories about religion, sex, family, death and running—as “horrifying,” “funny,” and “unique.” J. Robert Lennon in The New York Times Book Review called the book “a strange, thrilling and disarmingly honest piece of work” and “perhaps the most engaging literary treatment of Christianity since [Flannery] O’Connor, without a hint of the condescension the subject often receives in contemporary fiction.” No Personal Questions, Please When I approached Quatro through her publisher, Grove Atlantic, her publicist asked me to avoid any personal questions. Why? Because there have been too many interviewers who have looked at the recurring female adulteress—it’s hard not to go biblical, there’s so much Southern religion in the book— and asked about autobiographi-

cal elements. Fine, I said. I have no problem conceiving that a woman could write about a woman having an affair without it being a covert confession. And I’m not much interested in finding secret keys anyway. Sure enough, other interviews I read online sooner or later got around to asking about autobiography. It’s true, there are a lot of other non-salacious details that seem straightforwardly drawn from life. In addition to the recurring character having an affair, another group of stories revolves around a woman dying of cancer. Others feature

»P8

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CREATING BEAUTIFUL SURROUNDINGS

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a woman who moved to Lookout Mountain when her husband took a job teaching economics at Westminster College, much like Quatro’s husband took a job teaching management at Covenant College a few years ago. Running with Art on Her Back The women afflicted with cancer and the affair are runners. Another woman runs a bizarre, doomed marathon with a statue on her back? That’s how all marathons are run in the surreal “Ladies and Gentlemen of the Pavement.” Some statues are tiny, some huge. Some are schlock and some are “true art.” Most are overtly sexual and grotesquely phallic, like the Greek art they don’t tell you about in high school. Ditching your statue mid-race gets you banned for life from the sport. This story began with images Quatro saw online of long-distance runners carrying giant crucifixes. “I started to wonder: if I had to carry something on my back while I raced, what would it be?” she says. “I don’t know why the answers in the story turned out to be either (a) hideous phallic statues or (b) gorgeous objects d’art, but there it is.” What did she intend to say with this piece? “I have no idea. Drafting is like watching a movie. The characters run the show.” She’s heard interpretations of this story ranging from the artist’s role in society, the writer’s fear of failure, grace vs. works, Protestantism vs. Catholicism, Southern heritage and the role of tyranny in modern society. “Who am I to say what the story ‘means?’” she asks. “When reader and text collide, it’s nuclear; a third thing is created that is separate from authorial ‘intention,’ if such a thing exists.” The running continues in “Holy Ground,” when the unnamed woman having the affair leaves her husband and kids to go for a run, saying she won’t be back for a few days. “We’ll stay on this couch until you come back. You won’t have to worry about our safety,” he says. This woman runs down from the mountain and finds her way to some missionaries in downtown Chattanooga. She wants to help the poor, she says, or maybe “just sort of hang out with them.” The poor end up helping her, and she tells them a story. She’s Not There Some stories don’t seem to have a possible Quatro avatar at all. In “Demolition,” a historic church on Lookout Mountain starts shedding pieces of itself. Panes from the stained-glass Bible scenes start falling one at a time after a mysterious stranger arrives. Before long the congregation bulldozes the building to find sanctuary of a different kind in the woods and to find God

embodied more tangibly in each other. Despite their connections now, the stories all arose separately. “I planned nothing in advance,” she says. “Most of my stories begin—to paraphrase Donald Barthelme—in a place of ‘notknowing,’ with nothing more than an itch, an image, a line of dialogue. So everything happened organically, on the page. I was just writing one story to the next, hoping to tell the truth with each one.” Quatro worked with her editor and agent to select the stories in the book from a larger pool. Some only became linked in the editing, through adjustments to names, illnesses and setting. There were more infidelity pieces that didn’t make the cut because it was too difficult to make them work as part of a group. When other interviewers asked the autobiography question, she talked about examining what constitutes infidelity in the digital age, or about how it’s easy to assume stories written in the first person are autobiographical. But there’s something more than an author choosing fictional topics going on here. The “me, not me” quality of these characters is at the absolute heart of what Quatro is doing in this book. Her subject is not herself, but she uses herself as a crucible, throwing in these fictional characters that share some of the facts and shape of her life, then heating them until they become more. The long-distance affair, the lover’s corpse in the bedroom, the race carrying priapic statuary, the aching loss of a husband or a wife—for me it all adds up to something more subtle and moving than a novel that tried to encode the same stuff into a longer narrative. The book’s title comes from one of the long-distance affair stories in the middle of the book. Just before mutual texting of foot photos escalates to semi-nudes and full frontal, the female character says, “I want to show you more.” The final story, “Relatives of God,” is a tiny coda of sorts, reprising key themes of the book: the mostly disembodied but intensely physical affair, the very present love of husband and children, religion weaving through everything. This is the day the woman releases the object of her affair. I think what Jamie Quatro has done in this book is a weirdly beautiful blend of revelation and concealment, looking through herself as a lens to see something bigger but leaving the reader with a fascinating double vision. I understand why interviewers can’t let the autobiography question go unasked. But the book itself is the answer, and negotiating a conversational vocabulary for this ethereal stuff misses the point.


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1,000 Words A SOUTHERN WRITERS’ JOURNAL

Johnny Cash at Nickajack By Cody Maxwell

I

n 1967, a man stumbled into Nickajack Cave. He was a man who had made his name rambling around playing a flat-top box and singing about trains and guns and prisons. He sang about loose women, drunken Indians and mad dogs. He sang about shoeshine boys and floods. Chain gangs and men swinging from gallows. Railroads and rivers. He sang about waking up in a Chattanooga jail one morning and said he taught the weeping willow how to cry. He ran with Elvis Presley through the early days of rock ‘n’ roll, singing, ‘I don’t care if I do—die—do—die— do’ from Memphis to New Orleans. He went to sing for the convicts in California’s Folsom Prison He carried his flattop box up the backstage steps and looked out over a room full of murderers, robbers and thieves. He wore a black suit. He saddled up his guitar the right way, walked out to the microphone and said, “Hello, I’m Johnny Cash.” But in 1967, the music men in Nashville were saying that the Man in Black was through. He stood six foot two, weighed 150 pounds and had long been strung out on cocaine, pills and booze. Johnny Cash was sick. He had been in and out of hospitals and jails for years and had cancelled countless concerts because he was too wasted to stand on a stage and sing. By the beginning of October that year he was on the edge of death. He had been awake for days and hadn’t eaten anything other than amphetamines by the handful. He was whiskey drunk and strung-out and he knew that his career, as well as his life, was near its end. He left his home in Hendersonville, Tenn., one day that October and drove east for an hour or so. He parked his old Jeep on the side of the road then staggered through the thorns and brush down to the mouth of Nickajack Cave. He walked into the blackness of that cave until he could walk no more. He then went to his hands and knees and crawled until he couldn’t crawl anymore. Like a sick animal, he was looking for somewhere to die. We all know of that darkness which was in Johnny Cash—a darkness that is not explained by the preachers on the old gospel radio stations he grew up listening to. This darkness came from somewhere deeper. He told of it in his songs—most famously in “Folsom Prison Blues,” when he sang about shooting a man in Reno, not over a feud over a woman or in a dusty-street duel, but “just to watch him die.” The dark brutality found in “Folsom Prison Blues” doesn’t waste time justifying itself or making sad excuses. It’s not revenge or jealousy—it’s death for death’s sake. It was the Man in Black’s murder ballad side. There’s another ballad in which a woman named Delia is murdered. The killer in that ballad tied Delia to a chair. He shot her once—it didn’t kill her, but “with the second shot she died.” But there was a catch. There was always this catch in those murder ballads of his. At the end of the songs, John-

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ny Cash always tells of the guilt the killer later felt. Every time he thinks about that dead man in Reno he hangs his head and cries. When the law finally catches up with Delia’s killer, he’s suffering the jailhouse consequences and pleading for the jailor to come help him, crying that he can’t sleep because all around his jailhouse bed he hears the “patter of Delia’s feet.” The guilt is always there, and that sense of guilt is what made the brutality make sense to all of us. Johnny Cash had lived on the road for years, traveling and singing his songs about killers and floods, jailhouses and whores. He ate pills to keep running and became “leather and bones,” he said, and there was nothing left of him. He was strung out, wasted and had no idea who he was anymore. He thought that in the black depths of Nickajack Cave he could put an end to his life and nobody would ever find his wasted body. Only God would know where he was and he was ready to let God put him “wherever He puts people like me,” as he said later in his autobiography. That heavy guilt had wholly overcome him and

he felt there was no redemption for him anymore. He had no control—death was the only way to make the guilt of what he had become stop. He wanted to be swallowed in the blackness of the Nickajack Cave and of the peaceful blackness of death. He had laid himself down to die. Then something happened. He later said: I didn’t believe it at first. I felt something very powerful, a sensation of utter peace, clarity and sobriety. I couldn’t understand it. How, after being awake for so long and driving my body so hard and taking so many pills—dozens of them, scores, even hundreds—could I possibly feel all right? The feeling persisted though, and then my mind started focusing on God. There in Nickajack Cave I became conscious of a very clear, simple idea: I was not in charge of my destiny. I was not in charge of my own death. I was going to die at God’s time, not mine. The Man in Black then raised his head. He started to move. He had no idea how to get back out of the cave but he crawled in whatever direction he could find, feeling before »P12


Lit on Film

Rough Life ‘The Rough South of Larry Brown’: A powerful writer, a powerful film By John DeVore

I

t seems that every Southern writer comes from somewhere like Tula. There must be something about the slow pace and hot summers of Mississippi that make writing a necessity. In the opening moments of “The Rough South of Larry Brown,” the ripe, clear Southern drawl of Mary Annie Brown shapes the rest of the film by giving it such a distinct sense of place. Told through a series of interviews with author Larry Brown, a Southern writer who has been compared to Cormac McCarthy and William Faulkner, “The Rough South of Larry Brown” is a documentary that shows the work and life of a man through the lens of his place in the world. Brown was a fireman before he was an author (or perhaps he was an author who spent his time putting out fires) and at times labored at various odd jobs trying to make money for his family. His wife regards him as a man of whims and during one of those impulses he borrows a typewriter and immerses himself in creating stories. Both Brown and his wife treat the incident as a passing thought rather than a lifelong desire, and yet the man wrote hundreds of short stories and 10 novels, five of which were unpublished. Brown believed that writing was a practice not a talent—a practice that he threw himself into sometimes at the expense

WILL PATTON plays Frank in the documentary “The Rough South of Larry Brown.” The works of the Oxford, Miss. firemanturned-writer are examined in a unique format that incorporates narrative film adaptations of three of his short stories. The film screens Friday at the Tivoli Theatre as part of the Celebration of Southern Literature.

of his family. A strong presence in the film is Brown’s wife, Mary Annie, who by her own admission raised their children and made sure the family thrived. Brown worked at the fire station, writing during breaks and brought home what money he could, but he appears to be something of an absent presence in the lives of his children. Often, he spent time in the bars around Tula, collecting inspiration for characters and stories. Despite this, Mary Annie shows no bitterness. She accepts his idiosyncrasies as she would the changes in the weather, seeing them not as flaws but as pieces of a whole. Throughout the narrative, dramatized piec-

es of Brown’s short stories give the audience a sense of his work while allowing him to comment on the themes and complexities found therein. It paints a picture of a powerful writer, giving the audience a sense of how he was able to find his stories. Mary Annie took the reins of responsibility and enabled Brown to create a lasting body of work in a time when literary fiction is dying. She is almost as responsible for his legacy as he is. For writers, “The Rough South of Larry Brown” gives a unique look at an artist and his work. It shows a simple man, from a simple place, and reveals how rich stories are born.

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chattanoogapulse.com • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • The Pulse • 11


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himself with his hands. He soon felt a breath of wind on his back—he turned around and followed that wind until he saw a light. When he came out of the blackness he found June Carter standing at the mouth of Nickajack Cave. She had a basket of food and gave him something to drink. She held his arm and Johnny told her that God had saved him in that cave. She drove him back home and Johnny told her that he wasn’t going back to what he was before. He had been unable to forgive himself for what he’d become but there in the blackness of Nickajack Cave he realized that God would forgive him. The traditional symbolism of the cave tells that those dark spaces beneath the earth are where spiritual death takes place prior to rebirth. Passing through a cave represents a change of state, or a re-entry into the womb, and re-emergence represents that rebirth or spiritual enlightenment. The story of Johnny Cash at Nickajack Cave fits this mythic symbolism perfectly. He entered Nickajack Cave as the Man in Black— strung-out, road-worn and with a deep darkness consuming his soul. He entered that cave as a guilty man but the Man in Black re-emerged forgiven and a Man of God. But he still had songs to sing. In his last years, Johnny Cash recorded some old gospel songs. One of those songs seems to tell the tale of what happened to him in the dark depths of Nickajack Cave. As he sang this song there was a new truth in his old voice. It was not the shaky guilt that was there when he sang about tying Delia down or watching that man in Reno die. It was a religious conviction. Johnny didn’t write the song. It’s an old spiritual that tells of the righteous brutality of God rather than of the brutality and guilt that Johnny often sang about—that age old evil guilt that is born into all men: Well my Goodness Gracious! Let me tell you the

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The traditional symbolism of the cave tells that those dark spaces beneath the earth are where spiritual death takes place prior to rebirth. Passing through a cave represents a change of state, or a re-entry into the womb, and re-emergence represents that rebirth or spiritual enlightenment. news! My head’s been wet with the midnight dew! I been down on bended knee TALK-in’ to the Man from GAL-i-lee He spoke to me with a voice so sweet I thought I heard the shuffle of angel’s feet He called my name and my heart stood still When he said, “John, go do

my will! Go and tell that longtongued liar, go and tell that midnight rider, Tell the rambler, the gambler, the night fighter, Tell ‘em that God’s gonna cut ‘em down. Tell ‘em that God’s gonna cut ‘em down.” The Man in Black is gone now. Johnny Cash doesn’t play the flat-top box anymore and

we can only presume that the guilt that came through all his old murder ballads has been washed away. A dam was built in 1967 and Nickajack Cave was flooded—no one is allowed to go inside. Johnny Cash was one of the last men in there. There’s a fence around the cave’s mouth now. The place is now home to a colony of grey bats that fly out when the sun goes down. When darkness falls and the grey bats fly out the moon rises over the river and moonlight floats on the water. It’s quiet outside the cave at night. There are only the shadows of the mountains, the moonlit river and a soft wind. Nothing else is there. • Cody Maxwell is a Chattanooga writer. This story is adapted from his new book, “Chattanooga Chronicles,” which will be published in August by History Press.


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LIST

THE

pulse » PICKS

• A curated weekly selection of picks from the Chattanooga Live and Arts & Entertainment calendars by Pulse staffers.

THU04.18 MUSIC We Killed Vegas • Unclassifiable rock with attitude. 9 p.m. • The Honest Pint • 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-4192 • thehonestpint.com

EVENT Get Your Lit On • The Celebration of Southern Literature begins today. 9-10 a.m. • The Public Library 1001 Broad St. • (423) 757-5310 southernlitalliance.org

FRI04.19 MUSIC Rapper’s Delight • The history of rap and hip-hop in one night. 10 p.m. Rhythm & Brews • 221 Market St. rhythm-brews.com

THEATRE “Some Girl(s)” • Graduates of Chattanooga State’s Professional Actor Training Program present this play at the Ensemble Theatre of Chattanooga. 7:30 p.m. • Ensemble Theater of Chattanooga 5600 Brainerd Road • (423) 697-3246 chattanoogastate.edu/humanities-fine-arts

SAT04.20 MUSIC The Winter Sounds, Stereo Dig, The Waters Brothers 9 p.m. The Honest Pint • 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-4192 • thehonestpint.com

EVENT AmuseUm Party 7 p.m. • Creative Discovery Museum, 321 Chestnut St. • (423) 648-6043 cdmfun.org

“TAKING IT OUTSIDE” is a program that brings together theatre, visual arts and audience interaction in a multi-generation context. It will be presented at 6 p.m. on Thursday, April 25, at the Hunter Museum of American Art in partnership with the Chattanooga Theatre Centre. chattanoogapulse.com • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • The Pulse • 15


weird is good. Thursday, April 18

$3.50 PINT NIGHT

By Esan Swan

Tap Takeover at Sturm Haus 1120 Houston Street

C

Saturday, April 20

Sunday, April 21

Celtic Music Circle with members of Pay the Reckoning at 5 p.m.

Craft Beer on Tap The Chattanooga Craft Beer Festival is a tasty way to experience new flavors of great beer

Friday, April 19

Sour Squeeze debuts at CCBF Walley Brothers at 8 p.m.

Cool Stuff

Moccasin Bend Brewing Company Tuesday-Friday, 6pm-Midnight Saturday, 1pm-Midnight Sunday, 2-10pm 4015 Tennessee Ave. 423-821-6392 • bendbrewingbeer.com

16 • The Pulse • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com

raft beer will once again be making a name for itself in the city, this time during the inaugural Chattanooga Craft Beer Festival at the First Tennessee Pavilion on April 20. The event will last from noon until 5 p.m. with a limit of 2,000 people for attendance. “It’s not a drinking fest, it’s a tasting fest,” said Tony Giannasi, an organizer for the festival. “We’ll have one-ounce pours with waters on each table.” For those of you who don’t know, craft beer is beer made from a small, independent regional breweries. Chattanooga is home to more than a few, including Chattanooga Brewing Company, Terminal Brewhouse, Big River Grille & Brewing Works, Moccasin Bend Brewing Company, Barley Mob and McHale’s Brewhouse. Giannasi said it’s going to be a whole new experi-

ence, with brewers trying to show off all the coolest things about different flavors of beer, or “all that weird stuff not typical of other beer festivals,” in his words. He said the wide variety of brewers at the festival will allow people to explore different types of beer. “We want to raise people’s awareness to craft beers,” he said. “There’s a lot more than what you can see over the mountain.” A number of breweries have signed on to the tasting event, including Jackalope Brewing, New Belgium, Sweetwater, Yazoo, Lazy Magnolia, Good People, Highland, Sierra Nevada, Schlafly, Starr Hill, Red Brick, Blue Pants, Brooklyn Calfkiller Brewing and many more. Giannasi said one of the best parts about the festival is that guests get to enjoy different varieties of beer without traveling. He said some types of beer just aren’t available

in Chattanooga so the Craft Beer Festival is the only way to try new flavors without having too far. Giannasi mentioned Calfkiller of Sparta, Tenn., Rivertown from Cincinnati, and Turtle Anarchy of Franklin, Tenn., will be present at the festival, along with many other regional beers. The Craft Beer Festival is the finale of Chattanooga Craft Beer Week. This week, Taco Mac featured a different cask beer each day and Straight to Ale beers will fully take over Brewhaus’ taps with a total of 12 beers. The Women in Craft Beer Event will be hosted by the Pink Boots Society at 212 Market Restaurant with femaleowned and brewed Jackalope Brewing. Tickets are $45 and include a six-ounce tulip tasting glass, drinking water, educational seminars and samples of all beers. For more information, visit chattanoogacraftbeerfest.com


The Arcade Returns Not since the 1970s has a real arcade captured such attention. But Game Galaxy is trying—very hard By Daniel Annear

W

ago inside of a retro gaming forum to discuss these glories from a bygone era. Acquaintance became friendship and friendship fostered commerce as they sold to each other prize picks from private collections. Wilson, a curator of rare and classic games, had had some success building hobby arcades in Antioch, Tenn., and Hunstville, Ala. Belinghiere recalls, “I found myself in a position to open a retail retro game store, and he asked me if I would open my store inside his arcade ... it was an answered prayer, really.” Game Galaxy, the fruit of this collaboration, opened inside of Northgate Mall on the Ides of March for 2013. The arcade features cabinets that cover the gamut of the gaming heyday, from 4-bit pioneers to the colorful and cacophonous quarter-munchers that

Your money, which is to say your specie, is no good here. The games do not accept quarters or tokens. All of the dip switches have been set to Free Play. held court when home systems started to become miniature Skynets and overthrew the established order. Your money, which is to say your specie, is no good here. The games do not accept quarters or tokens. All of the dip switches have been set to Free Play. “Jason came up with the idea of paying for time instead of per game after noticing customers would come in with a roll of quarters, play for 20 minutes or so, then leave and not come back for a month or two,” Belinghiere said. His innovative system evolves the primordial arcade into what it was meant to be:

CRAFT BEERS ON SITE PINTS & GROWLERS TO GO FREE POOL • SHUFFLEBOARD • WI-FI

hen I was but a boy, I used to beat my brother bloody. Oh, he would try to defend himself. Valiantly, almost. But it did little good; I would, at the very least, beat him unconscious, and, if I could remember how, I would occasionally tear out his spine. Arcades in the 1980s were the equivalent of bars for disaffected youth. An afternoon there was as social an experience as the player cared it to be. You could drink alone on PacMan or share a round on Captain America and the Avengers. Instead of going “online” and “queuing” in a “lobby,” we got in line and queued in a lobby. Claims to the throne were announced with upturned quarters. Opponents were looked in the eye. Or one could jump in to save a noob who was getting overwhelmed by Willy’s firepower. Sometimes cooperation became competition—everyone, after all, envied the reach of Donatello’s stick. Matt Belinghiere and Jason Wilson met online a few years

A SMOKE-FREE NEIGHBORHOOD PLACE

Cool Stuff

an eternal Valhalla of battle, death and rebirth. You can ascend to this Nordic paradise for a half-hour at $4, an hour at $6 and all damn day at $10. The hour of your doom is denoted in marker on a fluorescent wristband (which you would do well to wear next to a watch). This old hand recommends getting the hour at a minimum; I spent my entire 30 minutes on the creatively crass ultra-violence of Battletoads. Game Galaxy’s palpable love for the Old Ways is not restricted to arcade cabinets. Discount shoppers and completionists can hold hands and skip through a relatively vast inventory of vintage home consoles from every era, including Ataris of every stripe (including the Jaguar) to Turbografix 16 to an I-shit-you-not Panasonic 3DO. Have no fear that you’re buying an exceptionally sweet paperweight; there are enough classic, cult, collectible and even foreign language cartridges to ensure that you get at least six months behind on your student loans. In these halls, wizening adults reverently point out to small children the artifacts of the Before Time, in the Long, Long Ago. Offering this opportunity for veterans to prove what fun looks like to the next generation is part and parcel of Game Galaxy’s design. “Nostalgia is a primary appeal,” Belinghiere explains. “If, for a moment, I can provide that glimpse of the glory days of their past, that youthful glimmer in their eyes, I have done my job.”

1120 HOUSTON ST. • 423.648.1120

chattanoogapulse.com • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • The Pulse • 17


Card-Carrying GrassPop The Greencards stretch the boundaries of bluegrass

C

heap Trick’s “I Want You To Want Me” may not be a song you expect to hear from a string band, unless it’s The Greencards and then it may well be exactly what you’ve come to expect. The Greencards have been stretching the boundaries of bluegrass and taking Bill Monroe’s music to new heights for more than a decade. Monroe’s rabble-rousing spirit is alive and well in their all-encompassing embrace of American music. “We’ve always been concerned with not being genre-specific,” Kym Warner, the group’s mandolin player, told me recently. “If we like a song we’ll play it whether it’s a pop song or a folk song or whatever. Carol’s the singer, so it mostly depends on whether or not she can feel it.” Carol Young is the bass player and lead singer. She met Warner in Sydney, Australia, in a house the two were sharing with a number of other like-minded musicians. Young grew up in Sydney. Warner moved there from his native Adelaide because in the 1990s Sydney was the center of Australia’s music scene. These days, according to Warner, the center has shifted to Melbourne and the audience for the acoustic music they wanted to play has dler from the U.K. In order to largely disappeared. stay and play in the country they Winner of the each had to apply for Australian National a green card, hence Bluegrass Mandolin their name. Championship four After growing up times in a row, Warnear the ocean, you ner wanted nothing might think they felt more than to be in a a bit land-locked in band playing blue- RICHARD WINHAM Austin, but accordgrass. Young felt the ing to Warner they same way, so in 2001 they shipped felt right at home. “We landed in out for the U.S. landing in Austin, this west Texas town, there were Texas, where they hooked up with cowboys and people were playing Eamon McLoughlin, a young fidcountry music and, you know, I

Music

18 • The Pulse • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com

grew up with all of that.” The three players formed a tight unit but they were never able to find a permanent guitar player. They had what Warner calls a “rotating roster” of players joining them for gigs and recordings, but only on a casual contract. That all changed when McLoughlin left the group in 2008 and they joined forces with guitarist Carl Miner. A gifted flat picker, he was just 16 when he placed second in the annual

National Flatpick Championship in Winfield, Kan. A year later he took first place. With Miner the group was again a tight-knit trio, but this time without a regular fiddler. But that hasn’t proven to be a problem according to Warner. “Things are much easier now with the core of the band being the rhythm section,” he said. They work with a rotating roster of fiddlers including Tyler Andal, Luke Bulla and Christian Sedelmeyer, who will be with them on Saturday night. According to

his bio, the five-string fiddler has been influenced equally both by Neil Young and the legendary Nashville fiddler, Stuart Duncan. Like Duncan, he’s a sought after session player and sideman capable of playing in a wide range of styles. Miner is an equally versatile player adding bluesy string bending and a jazzy Tony Rice-style counterpoint to Tyler Andal’s fiery fiddle and Warner’s nimble mandolin runs on rapidfire instrumentals like “Adelaide” on The Brick Album.


ZOO

Young’s drowsy vocal caresses the words as the fiddle curls around her voice and the mandolin plays a percussive stringdamping vamp. It sounds like a classic Kinks ballad sung and played by Joni Mitchell with Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli.

of entertainment

under one roof! MONDAY WING NIGHT

Come out every Monday Night for Sky Zoo’s Almost Famous Wings in any flavor only 50 cents each and $1 draft beer!

Chattanooga’s The group’s sets—like their albums— are a mix of that kind of classic stringband fare with Warner’s Brit-pop influenced songs. Their most recent album also included a couple of songs by John O’Brien, a young songwriter they met during the sessions for the record. “Naked On The River,” one of two songs by him on the album is an example of what Warner meant by Carol Young “feeling” the song. The song extols the joys of a lazy afternoon lazing on the water. Young’s drowsy vocal caresses the words as the fiddle curls around her voice and the mandolin plays a percussive string-damping vamp. It sounds like a classic Kinks ballad sung and played by Joni Mitchell with Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli. “Mrs. Madness,” like most of the songs on the album, was written by Kym Warner. It’s another drowsy ballad that would have fit comfortably on any of The Kinks albums in the mid-’60s. While “Here Lies John,” another John O’Brien song, is a showcase for their stellar playing. Young’s airy falsetto floats over a locomotive guitar figure which becomes ever more insistent as the train in the song picks up speed. The fiddler adds a series of stretching, keening notes evoking the train whistle’s long winding wail before picking up speed and providing a pizzicato counterpoint to Young’s mounting despair as the song fades. Listening to their most recent, and most inventive album to date, is like listening to David Grisman trading ideas with Paul McCartney. The result is a sometimes languid, sometimes intense, but always melodic and inventive hybrid of classic British pop and string-band swing. • Richard Winham is the producer and host of WUTC-FM’s afternoon music program and has observed the Chattanooga music scene for more than 25 years.

Chattanooga’s

STOP BY ANY TIME. OPEN 24/7. WEEKLY ALTERNATIVE SINCE 2003 •

chattanoogapulse.com

Chattanooga’s

TUESDAY

TWISTED TUESDAYS

Come out on Tuesdays for 3-2-1 Countdown Beer gets Cheaper the later it gets and $5 Vegas Bombs WEEKLY ALTERNATIVE SINCE 2003 ALL DAY AND NIGHT LONG! •

Chattanooga’WEDNESDAY s

PIZZA & PITCHERS

WEEKLY ALTERNATIVE • SINCE 2003

Come out Wednesdays for $6 WEEKLY ALTERNATIVE SINCE 2003Pizzas (made fresh in One Topping house) and $2 Domestic Pitchers! •

FRI & SAT LIVE MUSIC

Every Friday & Saturday we host Bands on our Huge Stage, and DJ “O” in our Nightclub (The Boom Boom Room) As always darts and billiards are available. Full menu till 2am. Come party at the ZOO!!

SUNDAY SOLO CUP SUNDAY

Every Sunday from 9pm till Close ALL YOU CAN DRINK DRAFT-$5! Bud Light, Miller Light, Coors Light, and Budweiser!

EVERY WEEK onlY in Club Admission • 21+ 6pm to 3am daily 5709 Lee Highway 423-521-2ZOO (2966) skyzoochattanooga.com chattanoogapulse.com • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • The Pulse • 19


901 Carter St (Inside Days Inn) 423-634-9191

Thursday, April 18: 9 p.m. Open Mic with Hap Henninger Friday, April 19: 9pm Troy Underwood Saturday, April 20: 10pm Big Bette & She-She Dance Tuesday, April 23: 7pm

Server/Hotel Appreciation Night $5 Pitchers $2 Wells $1.50 Domestics ●

All shows are free with dinner or 2 drinks! Stop by & check out our daily specials! Happy Hour: Mon-Fri: 4-7pm $1 10oz drafts, $3 32oz drafts, $2 Wells, $1.50 Domestics, Free Appetizers

Facebook.com/theofficechatt

Chattanooga Live CALENDAR@CHATTANOOGAPULSE.COM

THU 04.18 Queen Lightning 7 p.m. Sugar’s Ribs, 507 Broad St. (423) 508-8956 sugarsribs.com Tim Lewis 9 p.m. Bart’s Lakeshore, 5600 Lakeshore Drive (423) 870-0777 bartslakeshore.com Open Mic with Hap Henninger 9 p.m. The Office, 901 Carter St. (423) 634-9191 The John Sutton Band, We Killed Vegas 9 p.m. The Honest Pint, 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-4192 thehonestpint.com Channing Wilson 9 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Road (423) 499-9878 budssportsbar.com Lingo, Sam Jackson 5 9:30 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. rhythm-brews.com

fri 04.19 “Celtic Woman” 8 p.m. Memorial Auditorium, 399 McCallie Ave. (423) 757-5156 Priscilla & Lil Ricky 8 p.m. Bart’s Lakeshore, 5600 Lakeshore Drive (423) 870-0777 bartslakeshore.com. Misfit Toyz 8 p.m. Acoustic Café, 61 RBC Drive, Ringgold, Ga. (706) 965-2065 ringgoldacoustic.com The Twitches, Megan Jean & The KFB 8 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400 VOX Chattanooga 8 p.m. The Camp House, 1427 Williams St. (423) 702-8081 thecamphouse.com Gabriel Newell 9 p.m. Jack A’s Chop Shop Saloon, 742 Ashland Terrace, (423) 713-8739 jackaschopshopsaloon.com Arson 9 p.m. Bart’s Lakeshore, 5600 Lakeshore Drive

20 • The Pulse • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com

WE KILLED VEGAS is a two-piece roots rock ‘n’ roll outfit that has drawn comparisons to the early Rolling Stones, The Beatles and The Kinks and have shared the stage with artists ranging from Foxy Shazam to Shovels and Rope. The band has toured extensively on the East Coast and are currently booking its first national tour along with a European tour in early September. Catch them live with the John Sutton Band at The Honest Pint on Thursday.

(423) 870-0777 bartslakeshore.com. The Most Important Band In The World 9 p.m. SkyZoo, 5709 Lee Hwy. (423) 468-4533 skyzoochattanooga.com Troy Underwood 9 p.m. The Office, 901 Carter St. (423) 634-9191 Senic City Soul Review 9:30 p.m. Sugar’s Ribs, 507 Broad St. (423) 508-8956 sugarsribs.com Soul Survivor 10 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Road (423) 499-9878 budssportsbar.com The Communicators present: Rapper’s Delight 10 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. rhythm-brews.com

sat 04.20 Project 86, Children 18:3, Covered Scars, Hazmat 6 p.m. The Warehouse, 6626 Hunter Road warehousevenue.com Bill Mize 8 p.m. Charles and Myrtle’s Coffeehouse, 105 McBrien Road (423) 892-4960 christunity.org/events Milele Roots 8 p.m. JJ’s Bohemia, 231 E. MLK Blvd. (423) 266-1400 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 Gypsy Punk Shenanigans, Bellydancers Rachel Brice & Lacy Jo, Strung Like A Horse, DJ Skinnyill 9 p.m. Rhythm & Brews, 221 Market St. rhythm-brews.com Quiet Company, The Winter Sounds, Stereo Dig, The Waters Brothers 9 p.m. The Honest Pint, 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-4192 thehonestpint.com Scenic City Soul Review 9:30 p.m. Sugar’s Ribs, 507 Broad St. (423) 508-8956 sugarsribs.com Big Bette & She-She Dance 10 p.m. The Office, 901 Carter St. (423) 634-9191


backylaerd gril

CHATTANOOGA

ROCKIN’ IN FRONt, SMOKIN’ OUt baCK NO SMOKING • ID REQUIRED • $5 COVER baND NIGhtS lIVE MUSIC 7:30-11 P.M. • DRINK SPECIalS • bIKES WElCOME! Thurs. April 18 Fri. April 19 Sat. April 20 Sun. April 21

Jerry Fordham spectacle southlander 7:30-midnight

open mic Jam session 4-11pm

E $11.95 RIb EY E IV DINNER ON ltS! MUSIC NIGh

SHOOTER JENNINGS has never been one to allow expectations, boundaries, genre or ideals dictate the direction of his art, from the moment he burst onto the scene with his debut album, Put The O Back In Country. We’re not sure what that means, but all will be revealed when he plays Track 29 on Wednesday.

LIVE MUSIC APRIL

18 RAPPER’S DELIGHT FRI. 10p 19 GYPSY PUNK SHENANIGANS SAT. 9p 20 THE BLACK CADILLACS THU. 9:30p 25 FRI. ABBY ROAD LIVE 10p 26 LINGO

with THE SAM JACKSON FIVE

THU. 9:30p

THE COMMUNICATORS HISTORY OF HIP HOP with BELLYDANCERS & STRUNG LIKE A HORSE

ASHLEY & THE X’S AND THE BROADCAST

TRIBUTE TO THE BEATLES

4021 HIXSON PIKE “WE SMOKE IN OUR BACKYARD”

between access road & ashland terrace

423.486.1369 • backyardgrillechattanooga.com

4.27 ZOOGMA 5.1 JAMES MCMURTRY 5.2 J RODDY 5.3 FRANK BLACK ALL SHOWS 21+ UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED • NON-SMOKING VENUE

221 MARKET STREET

HOT MUSIC • FINE BEER • GREAT FOOD BUY TICKETS ONLINE • RHYTHM-BREWS.COM

daily lunch & drink specials!

Soul Survivor 10 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Road (423) 499-9878 budssportsbar.com

sun 04.21 Molly Maguires 7 p.m. The Honest Pint, 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-4192 thehonestpint.com

wed 04.24 Josh Gilbert 8 p.m. Acoustic Café, 61 RBC Drive, Ringgold, Ga. (706) 965-2065 ringgoldacoustic.com Shooter Jennings, Strung Like A Horse, Husky Burnette 8 p.m. Track 29, 1400 Market St.

(423) 266-4323 track29.co John King 9 p.m. Bud’s Sports Bar, 5751 Brainerd Road (423) 499-9878 budssportsbar.com The Hardin Drae, The Rough and Tumble, Jennifer Hope 9 p.m. The Honest Pint, 35 Patten Pkwy. (423) 468-4192 thehonestpint.com

The only place in Town where you can sing karaoke anyTime.

410 markeT sT. (423) 757-wing singitorwingit-chattanooga.com

honest music

local and regional shows

Rick Rushing & The Blues Strangers with Zack Ryan & The Renegades ($3) The John Sutton Band with We Killed Vegas ($5) Ther Hardin Draw with The Rough & Tumble and Jennifer Hope ($5) Grass Roots Kids with The Mailboxes and Wolves Don’t Bark ($5)

Special Shows

Wed, Apr 17

9pm

Thu, Apr 18 Wed, Apr 24

9pm

Thu, Apr 25

Quiet Company with The Winter Sounds, Stereo Dig and The Waters Brothers Saturday, April 20, 9 p.m. ($7) Sundays: Live Trivia 4-6pm followed by Live Music Molly Maguires · Sun, Apr 21, 7pm (Free!) Grace Adele and the Grand Band · Sun, April 28, 7pm (Free!)

9pm 9pm

Full food menu serving lunch and dinner.

11am-2am, 7 days a week * 35 Patten Parkway * 423.468.4192 thehonestpint.com * Facebook.com/thehonestpint

chattanoogapulse.com • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • The Pulse • 21


Between the Sleeves record reviews • ernie paik

Psychotic Quartet Cordyceps (New Atlantis)

T

he title of the third release from the free improvisational group Psychotic Quartet, Cordyceps, refers to a type of fungus that, after being introduced into a host insect, eats away at the insect from the inside and then when ripe and ready, finally bursts through the exoskeleton of the carcass. It’s a perfectly fitting—if somewhat troubling—metaphor for the way Psychotic Quartet infects its listeners in a sly and sneaky manner before wreaking havoc. Available as a cassette and digital download, Cordyceps documents two live performances from the fall of 2011. One striking thing about the album is how it seems to avoid free-improv tropes of obvious moments of building and releasing. For most of the album, the waves are understated; indeed, this writer is reminded of the trick of lowering one’s voice, rather than raising it, to gain attention in a crowded room. On “Ophio Sinesis,” the players generate rumblings and brief outbursts, stepping quickly into the spotlight before retreating. The song ends with a string duet between violinist Katt Hernandez, light and nimble as a hummingbird, and the ardent, inventive double bassist

22 • The Pulse • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com

Evan Lipson, who feed off each others’ energy with a magnetic interplay. Trombonist Dan Blacksberg coaxes strange vibrations on “Yeast Stages,” while the unclassifiable percussion maverick Michael Evans lays down a bed of snaps and shakes. There are no egos on display on Cordyceps, which features a keen sense of balance and concentrates on cooperative synthesis and sound meshes. “Ascomata” features the group at its most abstract, with Lipson’s low grinding, Hernandez’s gliding haze and Blacksberg’s trombone-white-noise simulation, before it drifts into softer, more minimal territory. The album closes with the side-length track “Devouring Mycelium,” which is less like an explosion and more like a disturbing discharge of richly complicated sonic ooze.

Lau Nau Valohiukkanen (Fonal)

O

ne of this writer’s favorite albums of 2008 is the strange and beautiful Nukkuu by Finnish musician Laura Naukkarinen, aka Lau Nau, which had a gentle yet stimulating blend of the acoustic and synthetic. Like a folk album recorded 100 years in the future, its sounds and methods are not easy to place. Lau Nau follows that stunning album with Valohiukkanen, which

paradoxically branches out in new, different directions yet manages to sound less experimental and enigmatic than her two previous albums. Valohiukkanen opens with the track “Vololle,” which has a quality of beauty to it, but it’s a more conventional kind of beauty than that previously explored, with a relatively normal-sounding piano melody, the bowed strings of a jouhikko (a Finnish lyre) and gorgeous singing in Finnish, layered delicately like the aural equivalent of a pastry. “Kuoleman Tappajan Kuolema” is the album’s most baffling number, but it’s perplexing in not the best way, with four-on-the-floor, danceoriented beats and pulsating octave-separated backbone notes, it simply seems out-of-place on the album. The mysterious fragment “Välisoitto,” translated as “Interlude,” is oddly the first example on the album that is true to Lau Nau’s previous sonic identity. The album’s second half is much more interesting than the first, with a compelling cover of the Finnish folk song “Juokse Sinä Humma” (“Keep Running, My Horse”) with wild strings and driving bass and percussion notes from her backing band. “Paperthin” is another diversion, with lyrics sung in English and a Spanish, flavor provided by a nylonstringed guitar and a habanera rhythm. The best, most spellbinding number is the closing “Silmät” (“Eyes”) featuring static, manipulated tones, sliced and diced piano bits, and cascades of wordless vocals. The diverse yet uneven Valohiukkanen obviously sounds like it’s from a different country. However, Lau Nau’s previous albums sounded like they were from a whole different world.


Arts Entertainment CALENDAR@CHATTANOOGAPULSE.COM

JILL McCORKLE is one of dozens of Southern writers attending the Southern Lit Alliance’s Celebration of Southern Literature this week. She will take part in “Writers Discussing Their Craft” from 9 to 10:15 a.m. on Thursday at the main Chattanooga Public Library downtown on Broad Street with Lookout Mountain-based author Jamie Quatro.

THU 04.18 Celebration of Southern Literature 9-10 a.m. The Public Library, 1001 Broad St. (423) 757-5310 southernlitalliance.org “I Guess You Had To Be There” An installation art exhibit 11 a.m.-5 p.m. AVA Gallery, 30 Frazier Ave. (423) 265-4282 avarts.org CSO lunchtime concert: Warehouse Row 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. Warehouse Row, 1110 Market St. (423) 267-1127 chattanoogasymphony.org “Sparking With Paint”

Noon-1 a.m. Miller Plaza, 850 Market St. (423) 265-0771 rosestaylor.com Celebration of Southern Literature 1-6 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 757-5156 southernlitalliance.org “The Voices Behind Good Ol’ Girls” 5:15 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 757-5156 chattanoogaonstage.com “Glass Menagerie on the Bluff” 5-7 p.m. River Gallery, 400 E. 2nd St. (423) 265-5033 river-gallery.com

Sculpture: Jerome Meadows Exhibition 5-8 p.m. Contrapasso Studio, 1800 Rossville Ave. (423) 243-3778 “Plein Air: The Art of Outdoor Paintings” Opening Exhibit 5-8 p.m. Shuptrine’s Gold Leaf Designs, 2646 Broad St. (423) 266-4453 shuptrines.com “The Children’s Hour” 7 p.m. Chattanooga Theatre Centre, 400 River St. (423) 267-8534 theatrecentre.com Jon Reep 7:30 p.m. The Comedy Catch,

»P24 chattanoogapulse.com • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • The Pulse • 23


Arts Entertainment CALENDAR@CHATTANOOGAPULSE.COM 3224 Brainerd Road (423) 629-2233 thecomedycatch.com Chattanooga State Opera: “Dido and Aeneas” 7:30 p.m. Chattanooga State Theater, 4501 Amnicola Hwy. (423) 697-3383 chattanoogastate.edu/ humanities-fine-arts

fri 04.19 Celebration of Southern Literature 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 757-5156 southernlitalliance.org “I Guess You Had To Be There”: An installation art exhibit 11 a.m.-5 p.m. AVA Gallery, 30 Frazier Ave. (423) 265-4282 avarts.org Sculpture: Jerome Meadows exhibition 5-8 p.m. Contrapasso Studio, 1800 Rossville Ave. (423) 243-3778 facebook.com/chenowethhalligan-studios-and-front-gallery “Shanewis: The Robin Woman” 6 p.m. Ross’s Landing at the Waterfront, Riverfront Pkwy (423) 294-1241 choralartsofchattanooga.org “Some Girl(s)” 7:30 p.m. Ensemble Theater of Chattanooga, 5600 Brainerd Road (423) 697-3246 chattanoogastate.edu/ humanities-fine-arts Roland Carter 7:30 p.m. First Baptist Church, 401 Gateway Ave. (423) 425-4612 utc.edu/music/events Jon Reep 7:30 & 9:30 p.m. The Comedy Catch, 3224 Brainerd Road (423) 629-2233 thecomedycatch.com “Celtic Woman” 8 p.m. Memorial Auditorium, 399 McCallie Ave. (423) 642-TIXS chattanoogaonstage.com “The Children’s Hour”

24 • The Pulse • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com

“ROCK OF AGES” is called a “hilarious feel-good, rock-n-roll love story told through the mind-blowing, facemelting hits” of such popular 1970s and ’80s bands as Journey, Styx, REO Speedwagon and Twisted Sister. We’re not sure about that, but it’s definitely an opportunity to hear some rock ‘n’ roll on the stage of the ornate Tivoli Theatre at 7 p.m. on Sunday.

8 p.m. Chattanooga Theatre Centre, 400 River St. (423) 267-8534 theatrecentre.com

sat 04.20 Chickamauga Chase 8:30 a.m. Chickamauga National Military Park, 3370 LaFayette Road (423) 309-1278 chickamaugachase.com Celebration of Southern Literature 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 757-5156 southernlitalliance.org

Chattanooga Outdoor Expo 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Coolidge Park, 200 River St. (423) 643-6888 outdoorchattanooga.com “I Guess You Had To Be There”: An installation art exhibit 11 a.m.-5 p.m. AVA Gallery, 30 Frazier Ave. (423) 265-4282 avarts.org “Calaveras” 11 a.m.-3 p.m. H*Art Gallery of Tennessee, 110 E. Main St. (423) 227-3288 markmaking.org “Glass Menagerie

on the Bluff” 11 a.m.-4 p.m. River Gallery, 400 E. 2nd St. (423) 265-5033 river-gallery.com Brainerd Levee Wetlands Trek Noon. Chattanooga Trekkers, Brainerd Levee, Shallowford Road entrance (423) 503-2318 chatt-trekkers.weebly.com “Sparking With Paint” Noon-1 a.m. Miller Plaza, 850 Market St. (423) 265-0771 rosestaylor.com “Shanewis: The Robin Woman”


2 p.m. Ross’s Landing at the Waterfront, Riverfront Pkwy (423) 294-1241 choralartsofchattanooga.org “Spoke Tales” Vincent Storytelling Bike Ride 2 p.m. Outdoor Chattanooga, 200 River St. (423) 643-6888 outdoorchattanooga.com Sculpture: Jerome Meadows exhibition 5-8 p.m. Contrapasso Studio, 1800 Rossville Ave. (423) 243-3778 AmuseUm Party 7 p.m. Creative Discovery Museum, 321 Chestnut St. (423) 648-6043 cdmfun.org Lee University: Mozart’s “Requiem” 7:30 p.m. Lee University Conn Center, 1120 N. Ocoee St. 1-800-LEE-9930 leeuniversity.edu “Some Girl(s)” 7:30p.m. Ensemble Theater of Chattanooga, 5600 Brainerd Road (423) 697-3246 chattanoogastate.edu/ humanities-fine-arts Stuart Pimsler Dance: “Coming To a Point: The Chattanooga Project” 7:30 p.m. UTC Fine Arts Center, 736 Vine St. (423) 425-4269 stuartpimsler.com Jon Reep 7:30 & 9:30 p.m. The Comedy Catch, 3224 Brainerd Road (423) 629-2233 thecomedycatch.com “The Children’s Hour” 8 p.m. Chattanooga Theatre Centre,

400 River St. (423) 267-8534 theatrecentre.com

sun 04.21 Chattanooga Market opening with Chattanooga Symphony & Orchestra 11 a.m.-4 p.m. First Tennessee Pavilion, 1829 Carter St. (423) 402-9958 chattanoogamarket.org “Sparking With Paint” Noon-1 a.m. Miller Plaza, 850 Market St. (423) 265-0771 rosestaylor.com “Spoke Tales” storytelling bike ride 2 p.m. Outdoor Chattanooga, 200 River St. (423) 643-6888 outdoorchattanooga.com “The Children’s Hour” 2:30 p.m. Chattanooga Theatre Centre, 400 River St. (423) 267-8534 theatrecentre.com Choral Arts of Chattanooga: Brahms’ Requiem 4 p.m. Church of the Good Shepherd, 211 Franklin Road (423) 294-1241 choralartsofchattanooga.org Sculpture: Jerome Meadows exhibition 5-8 p.m. Contrapasso Studio, 1800 Rossville Ave. (423) 243-3778 facebook.com/ chenoweth-halliganstudios-and-front-gallery “Rock of Ages” 7 p.m. Tivoli Theatre, 709 Broad St. (423) 757-5156 chattanoogaonstage.com

“Some Girl(s)” 7:30 p.m. Ensemble Theater of Chattanooga, 5600 Brainerd Road (423) 697-3246 chattanoogastate.edu/ humanities-fine-arts

mon 04.22 “I Guess You Had To Be There”: An installation art exhibit 11 a.m.-5 p.m. AVA Gallery, 30 Frazier Ave. (423) 265-4282 avarts.org

tue 04.23 “I Guess You Had To Be There”: An installation art exhibit 11 a.m.-5 p.m. A VA Gallery, 30 Frazier Ave. (423) 265-4282 avarts.org Choral Arts of Chattanooga: Brahms’ Requiem 7:30 p.m. Brainerd United Methodist, 4315 Brainerd Road (423) 294-1241 choralartsofchattanooga.org

wed 04.24 “I Guess You Had To Be There”: An installation art exhibit 11 a.m.-5 p.m. AVA Gallery, 30 Frazier Ave. (423) 265-4282 avarts.org Outdoor Chattanooga Kayak Roll Class 6 p.m. Brainerd Complex, 1010 N. Moore Road (423) 643-6888 outdoorchattanooga.com

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Screen

‘42’ a Love Letter to Chattanooga Engel Stadium stars in new Jackie Robinson biopic By John DeVore

T

he minute I saw Engel stadium onscreen in “42,” objectivity went out the window. There’s just something about seeing a familiar sight on the big screen with an audience full of local Chattanoogans, that elevates a film beyond its flaws. Maybe it was the smattering of applause that broke out multiple times during the film, the cheers and hoots when Jackie Robinson walked down the tunnel at Engel for the first time, or the energy the audience gave back to the film in droves. Maybe it was searching the background for familiar faces (famed UTC education professor Dr. Merwyn McCoy is clearly visible in his role as a newspaper reporter, but my six hours on set didn’t warrant any screen time). Maybe it was simply seeing a good film about baseball with an enthusiastic packed house. Whatever the case may be, seeing “42” was an exciting experience, one that I’ll remember for a long time. Baseball movies lend themselves to raw emotion and inspiring tales. Part of it is the nostalgia factor. Despite its falling popularity in modern times, baseball is still the nation’s pastime. It always will be. The diamond, the crack of the bat, the cheer of the crowds, the stories, the history—these things are all so ingrained into American consciousness that it is inseparable from our sense of self. It’s part of the Norman Rockwell idealism that permeates our national identity. Not only that, but baseball has never been better than during the 1940s and ’50s. It was a time before strikes, before multimillion dollar contracts, when teams traveled in buses and had funny names like Who, What, and I Don’t Know. Mix into this a man overcoming segregation

The fact that Engel Stadium featured so prominently in a fulllength Hollywood film—one that will likely do well at the box office and be more or less well reviewed—can only be a good thing for the city and the film community here.

CHADWICK BOSEMAN stars as Jackie Robinson in the new biopic, “42,” filmed partially in Chattanooga at Engel Stadium. Harrsion Ford (below) stars as Brooklyn Dodgers owner Branch Rickey.

and a nation standing up to take notice and you have a powerful story that appeals to any American audience. Baseball loves an underdog and Jackie Robinson certainly had something to prove. “42” has the tendency towards speeches and hero worship, which is something of a drawback when it comes to a biopic. There is little time spent on who Jackie was off the field, beyond being a good husband and father. He doesn’t appear to have any flaws or make any poor decisions. Some might find the portrayal disingenuous; Robinson was human after all, and a good biopic should at least try to show the person fully, without judgment. It seems that director Brian Helgeland has so much love for the man that he couldn’t stop himself from making him overtly courageous. For many fans, the

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depiction is well deserved. However, had the filmmakers allowed the heroism of Jackie Robinson to show through without explicitly stating how noble and important

he was, the film might have been Oscar quality. A little understatement would have served “42” well. Of particular note, at least among the actors, is Harrison Ford. This is likely the best performance he’s given since “Regarding Henry.” Here, he isn’t the smug hero of Indiana Jones or Han Solo or a lead romantic interest. Instead, Ford creates a believable character in Branch Rickey, the grizzled Methodist owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers. The audience finally stops being aware that he’s Harrison Ford and accepts him as a character. It is impressive for a personality like Ford to disappear into someone else. Chadwick Boseman is effective as Robinson, but should have been given more to work with. Boseman has talent and deserves an opportunity to show how good he really is. I left the film not

knowing any more about Jackie Robinson than I did when I went in. Biopics should strive inform as well as entertain, providing the actor with rich material from which to draw. However, the production design is exceptional and detailed. This is a film that looks and feels great. None of the above criticism matters though, because I loved this film. “42” was huge for Chattanooga and critical in improving and renovating an important landmark in the city. The fact that Engel Stadium featured so prominently in a full-length Hollywood film—one that will likely do well at the box office and be more or less well reviewed—can only be a good thing for the city and the film community here. If we can get our legislators to stop taking food from poor elementary school kids and instead focus on making Tennessee an attractive place for the industry, Chattanooga could become a prime filming location. We’re called the Scenic City for a reason. There are a lot of people working behind the scenes—very hard—to make this happen. They need support. Let’s hope “42” is just the beginning.


chattanoogapulse.com • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • The Pulse • 27


Free Will Astrology ARIES (March 21-April 19): The writer Oliver Burkeman has some advice that would be helpful for you Aries folks to hear right now: “When you assume your current preferences won’t alter, you’ll make bad decisions: embarking on a career or marriage, say, not with a view to its durability, but solely based on how it makes you feel now.” I am most definitely not predicting that you are about to make the kind of bad decision Burkeman refers to. I’m sure my warning here in this horoscope will derail any temptation you might have to make short-sighted moves. TAURUS (April 20May 20): I’m happy to report that help from the invisible world is available to you right now. Of course you won’t be able to use it, let alone tune in to it, if you don’t believe there is any such thing as help from the invisible world. So if you are the type of person who is very sure that reality consists of nothing more than what your senses reveal, I suggest that you temporarily suspend that belief. And if you are someone who has had direct experiences with blessings that come from the unseen realm, be aware that the imminent delivery is quite different from those you have known in the past.

rob brezsny mantra in the coming week, Cancerian.

LEO (July

23-Aug. 22): Albert Einstein published his General Theory of Relativity in 1916. It had radical implications for the field of theoretical physics, but remained an unproven concept until 1919. Then a British physicist verified its accuracy with evidence gathered during a solar eclipse. The Times newspaper in London announced the event with the headline “Revolution in Science: New Theory of the Universe, Newtonian Theories Overthrown.” Not wanting to be left behind, The New York Times assigned one of its own journalists to cover the revolution. Unfortunately, the person they sent was a sports reporter whose specialty was golf. His article was less than illuminating. The moral of the story, as far as you’re concerned, Leo: When big developments are underway, show up at full strength, with all your powers engaged.

VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): “Never to get

lost is not to live,” writes Rebecca Solnit in her book A Field Guide to Getting Lost. In fact, she says that not knowing how to get

lost is unhealthy. These are useful ideas to consider right now, Virgo. It will probably do you good to get at least semi-lost. As you wander around without a map or compass, I bet you will stumble upon important teachings. At the same time, I hope you will put some thought into how you’re going to get lost. Don’t just leave it to chance. Make sure there’s a method in your madness.

LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): In the English language, “low man on the totem pole” is an idiom that refers to a person who has the worst job or the least status. He or she

is considered to be at the low end of the hierarchy. But it’s an incorrect metaphor. The creators of the original totem poles were indigenous Native American tribes of the Pacific Northwest, and for them the figure at the bottom of the pole was the most important one. I foresee the possibility of a similar situation arising in your sphere, Libra. Be alert for a misapprehension that needs to be righted. It may be the case that what’s last should actually be first. Something that has been beneath or behind “more important” matters should perhaps get higher priority.

A Monster’s Notes, Laurie Sheck describes the nuances of the term “ghost” in the German language. A mediocre wine may be called unghostly, she says. A witty, lively person is “Rich in Ghostliness,” whereas a dull, blank type “has no ghost in him.” In this spirit, Gemini, I suspect you will have some pretty fine ghostliness working for you in the coming weeks. And there’s a good chance that part of your extra-special mojo will arise from your creative engagement with energies that resemble the more traditional definition of “ghost.”

SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): In his book Karmic Traces, Eliot Weinberger describes the life story of naked mole rats. They’re animals that never leave their underground tunnels. Normally you Scorpios have nothing in common with them. But in the coming days, I’m hoping there will be one resemblance. According to Weinberger, the naked mole rats “change direction by somersaulting.” Metaphorically speaking, I think this would be an excellent strategy for you. There’s no need to mope cautiously as you alter your course. No need to be lackadaisical and fitful and full of doubts. Just spring into action with a cheery bounce, and move on with a renewed sense of purpose.

CANCER

SAGITTARIUS

GEMINI (May 21-June 20): In her book

(June 21-July 22): A oneminute video commercial for The Cosmopolitan luxury resort in Las Vegas shows an elegant woman at a sumptuous feast. She’s eagerly holding her dinner plate up to her face so she can lick it clean of its last delicious taste. The scene shifts to a welldressed man who’s down on all fours serving as a chair for a chic woman. She applies her make-up while gazing into the shiny mirror-like surface of a high-heeled shoe. New scene: An 80-year-old woman pats the butt of a handsome young stud with whom she’s slow-dancing. At the end of the ad, a catchphrase appears: “Just the right amount of wrong.” I say, let that be your

28 • The Pulse • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com

(Nov. 22-Dec. 21): The famous philosopher John Searle unleashed a witty dig about the famous philosopher Jacques Derrida, saying he is “the sort of philosopher who gives bullshit a bad name.” One of your fun assignments in the coming week, Sagittarius, is to do the opposite of what Derrida’s work does. In other words, give bullshit a good name. How? Well, you could engage in creative verbal expressions that boost morale and propagate delight and lubricate worthwhile connections. Make up noble fictions that are more accurate and useful that the literal truth. Spread uplifting gossip that heals and invigorates.

CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): “The

ideal piano player is the one who wants to be the piano,” says a character in Thomas Bernhard’s novel The Loser. He continues: “I say to myself every day when I wake up, I want to be the Steinway, I want to be the Steinway itself.” Your assignment, Capricorn, is to apply this attitude to your own personal situation. In other words, merge with the tool you want to master. Immerse yourself in the skill you’re working to perfect -- disappear into it. In your imagination, become completely united with the thing or person or experience you desire.

AQUARIUS

(Jan. 20-Feb. 18): “The trouble with our age is that it is all signpost and no destination,” said writer Louis Kronenberger. I’m concerned that you may have fallen under the sway of this kind of myopia, Aquarius. A steady stream of useful tips and clues has been appearing, but you’re missing some of them. Your longrange goals aren’t sufficiently clear, so you don’t always recognize the significance of new revelations. Here’s the cure: In your imagination, create a vivid picture of your next big destination.

PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): A group of

bicyclists in Southern California challenged a blogger to a race. They said they could cover the 38.4 miles from North Hollywood to Long Beach faster on their bikes than the blogger could get there by plane. As it turned out, they were right. Their trip took an hour and 34 minutes. As for the blogger, he had to drive to the airport, wait for the plane to depart, fly to a different airport, then catch a cab to the designated destination. He arrived about an hour after the cyclists. Can you guess which of those two modes of travel is the preferred metaphor for you this week, Pisces? The earthy, simple, stripped-down approach will get you where you need to go better than the big, elaborate, expensive method.


Jonesin’ Crossword

matt jones

“Line Interference”—movie quotes you’ve never heard.

Across

1. It’s about two weeks into the month 5. 1959 postapocalyptic classic 15. Fine covering 16. Sweltering, perhaps 17. Box a bit 18. Bold evening wear 19. One of the Oasis brothers 21. Non-professional 22. Celeb who tweeted about hemp oil for cancer treatment 27. Struggle in ancient Greek drama 31. “Te ___” (Valentine’s card phrase) 32. Microseism 33. Acronym that triggered protest

blackouts in 2012 34. Willie Mays’ first wife 36. Two fives for ___ 37. Palm with berries 38. Suffix meaning “form of government” 39. Like some minimums 40. Melinda’s husband 41. Self-made leader 43. System where A = 4 44. Fairy tale figures 45. Fred in the oldest surviving motion picture 46. ___ quam videri 47. Turn in front of traffic, maybe 49. Twisted Sister frontman Snider 51. ___ occasion (never) 52. Street View’s program 59. Seymour Skinner’s

love interest, once 61. Lacking substantiation 62. Folk singer Phillips 63. They hold a biker’s stuff 64. Silents star ___ Negri

Down

1. Contacts, in a way 2. Tactful affairs 3. Actor from “Caprica” and “NYPD Blue” 4. Winning coach in Super Bowl IV 5. Word before Town or Gang 6. Compass pt. 7. Not yet known: abbr. 8. Rapcore band ___ pe 9. Drink flavored with bergamot orange rind

10. Orange County city 11. Simple 12. Crunch targets 13. The Indians, on scoreboards 14. Fellows 20. Debunked idea 22. Easily broken 23. Frosting ingredient 24. MxPx vocalist Mike 25. 0 26. What the rich need, according to the riddle 28. Stopped procrastinating on 29. Running 30. Sid’s comedy partner on “Caesar’s Hour” 35. Like some Bible pages 42. City where 60down was formed 48. Winning, but not by much 50. Airline that translates as “skywards” 52. Gloomy sort 53. ___ whim 54. Former California military base 55. The 100, in “1 vs. 100” 56. Chris’s “Suburgatory” co-star 57. Identify 58. Campus protest gp. restarted in 2006 60. “Take on Me” group © 2013 Jonesin’ Crosswords. For answers to this puzzle, call: 1-900226-2800, 99 cents per minute. Must be 18+ to call. Or to bill to your credit card, call: 1-800655-6548. Reference puzzle No. 0619.

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FREELANCE WRITERS FAME, BUT NOT FORTUNE awaits you when you write for The Pulse! Talented writers and reporters with clips and standout amateurs welcome to apply. Send a sample story, a pitch and a brief bio to creative@chattanoogapulse.com and we’ll be in touch. Visit ChattanoogaPulse.com

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1,000 Words A SOUTHERN WRITERS’ JOURNAL

Interloper By Lisa Ploch Swope

I

guess I thought there’d be fried chicken. Back home, we had the world’s best fried chicken, served family-style at every corner, and we heard tales from those who ventured outside our tiny farming community about how there was none to be found. And yet I held out hope that there was one other place that would have my favorite food. That place of which I dreamed was the South. Now, as I sit on my front porch and wonder how I could have been so wrong, I determine it wasn’t my fault. From the television and through the country music airwaves, I had collected enough clues over my lifetime to determine that the South must be a fried-chicken haven. Had I not swallowed such propaganda, I might have stayed in Illinois. It’s April, and mine are the only windows open on the street. The other porches stand empty, and I can hear my neighbors’ air-conditioners running. Even the school where I teach is air-conditioned, unlike the one back home. In August, my old classroom was thick with humidity as I tried to teach the American Revolution to a room full of lethargic 9-year-olds. In May, bumblebees made their way into our class. Interlopers, we called them. Harmless and insignificant. The memory brings my concerns back to the lesson plans on my lap. I do not know how to teach the Civil War to my new students. I am embarrassed, because suddenly I do not understand this familiar topic. Before, I simply taught the dates and events in the textbook. I quizzed students on what I thought was a simple struggle between the just and the corrupt. Like myself, my students descended from poor immigrants from places like Italy, Ireland and Poland. Our ancestors toiled in ditches and coal mines, but never on Southern plantations. As my students recited lines from the Gettysburg Address, I was never concerned about any personal ties to either side of the war. Here, though, I am on unfamiliar familial territory. I wonder if it would be inappropriate to ask another teacher. Everyone on staff is friendly and they have welcomed me. Yet there are moments when I feel like an outsider, baffled by some of their gossip. As I work not to hear the wide variety of accents as dif-

30 • The Pulse • APRIL 18-24, 2013 • chattanoogapulse.com

h THE PULSE 2013 SHORT STORY CONTEST

first place

ferent from my own, I do not understand the preoccupation with who is or who is not a redneck or which parents sound country. I maintain that people here are the same as folks back home. There are wise characters and ignorant ones, kindhearted souls and selfish individuals. Sometimes I forget that I’m someplace else, because so much is universal. Then I see someone taking aspirin in powdered form and I remember where I am. Yet, despite my desire to find similarities, there seems to be a unified effort amongst my peers to differentiate themselves as Southerners. When they exchange plastic trinkets bearing sayings about Southern ladies, I bite my tongue rather than ask if they were made in China. It’s not my place. When one of the other women declares that she married a redneck, bless his heart, I wince. I hope never to have my heart blessed in my lifetime. To my ear, it sounds too close to rest her soul. Once, I walked in on a conversation about the former principal, who moved back North. She was a damn Yankee, the secretary said with sweet,

warm laughter. I expected them to halt or to become uncomfortable as I sat down, but they didn’t. Either they’d forgotten that I was from the North or they didn’t care. With a final bless her heart, the conversation moved to shoes. Back on my front porch, my thoughts return to the question of what to do about lunch. I bring my lesson plans inside, grab my keys and head out. I do not take my usual route, toward the chain restaurants. I take a new way, even though there appears to be nothing but a liquor store, a cheap motel and a whole lot of nothing. I feel like exploring. I see it at the exact moment I am passing it, and I almost can’t believe it. An old, stone archway bearing the words Confederate Cemetery, set back a little way from the road. I turn around in the liquor store parking lot and return to the spot. Now I am certain I’m not in Illinois. In awe, I turn onto a narrow driveway, barely wide enough for one car. A placard explains that 150-some unidentified soldiers, retrieved from local hospitals, are buried on these grounds. I feel like I’ve discovered a sacred treasure. I find well-maintained acres of green grass with old trees and stone benches. No headstones. I park my car and I stand at the gate, mesmerized. A sign welcomes respectful guests, but I hesitate. I think of Julian, dead at 21 and buried hundreds of miles to the north. What if he and I had been born in a different time, a different place? I know these men fought for the Confederacy, but all I can see in my mind are mothers, sisters and wives. Did their fathers wail at the news of their sons’ deaths? Did their mothers quickly apply masks of strength, lest they fall apart when their families needed them? Were they even certain that their boys had died, or had they spent years wondering, searching for their faces in crowds? Did their sweethearts go insane? The day is sunny and there is a slight breeze. Birds sing overhead. I move my hand toward the latch and then I freeze, watching a bumblebee fly through the gate. Interloper, I whisper. I linger at the gate, looking in. • Lisa Ploch Swope loves her new home of Chattanooga, relocating here from Kansas City last year. She and her husband enjoy hiking and discovering the area’s natural beauty.


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The Pulse 10.16 » April 18-24, 2013