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The Cheat Sheet

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Al Gore came to Memphis to sign copies of his latest book, An Inconvenient Truth. It's a title that actually seems to sum up the whole George W. Bush presidency. When W is confronted with something inconvenient -- such as speaking before an international summit -- he just forgets his microphone is on and offers this comment to British prime minister Tony Blair: "I just make it all up." Yes, that's the kind of leader we need in the world today.

Memphis reached two milestones last week. The heat index soared over 100, and murders also topped 100. Neither number is anything to be happy about. There's nothing we can do about July temperatures, and we're beginning to think there's nothing we can do about the crime rate, either.

Speaking of crime, Tamara Mitchell-Ford, ex-wife of former state senator John Ford, went to prison for the weekend for violating her probation and -- according to the judge -- having an "attitude problem." Hmmm, that must run in the family.

Southland Greyhound Park plans to spend $40 million to convert its 50-year-old dog-racing track into a glitzy complex that will compete (they hope) with all those casinos in Tunica. The plan will only work, we think, if they can convince "Loose Slots Louie" to be their pitchman.

A developer cancels plans to build an office tower on Main Street, SunTrust Bank warns it may close its tower, and the Center City Commission ponders how to battle high occupancy rates downtown. Meanwhile, it seems every square foot of downtown is being converted into condos, so we're confused. Hundreds and hundreds of people want to live downtown, but they don't want to work there? We don't get it.

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