Reflections of offbeat news in Tennessee from 2011
Posted: Wednesday, January 4, 2012 8:04 pm
NASHVILLE (AP) — A review of offbeat happenings in Tennessee in 2011:
At the Nashville funeral of former Gov. Ned McWherter, former President Bill Clinton recalled that McWherter had joked about losing 65 pounds after becoming ill and that “I may be beautiful to 30-year-old women now.”
Clinton said he told him: “You know how an 80-year-old man gets a 30-year-old lady? He tells her he’s 90.”
This for sale classified ad appeared in a Nashville newspaper July 11:
“Four burial plots with bronze marker valued at nearly 10k. Never been used.”
A Tennessee newspaper, which shall remain nameless, reported in August that a woman was 19 months pregnant.
This little kid’s T-shirt was on sale in October at a shop in Gatlinburg:
“Dear Santa. I tried.”
Welcome mat for sale at the annual October crafts fair in Bell Buckle:
“Not you again.”
In early September a public affairs manager at a university in Middle Tennessee inadvertently listed his wife’s cell phone number, not his own, in an alert to the news media.
In a quick correction, he noted, “Hope she’s in a good mood today.”
Bumper sticker on a big truck in Nashville last May:
“If you trust the government, check with the American Indians.”
A shiny red Corvette convertible was spotted on Interstate 65 near Columbia in mid-December with this license plate:
Maurice Ashley, a Grandmaster chess player, gave a lecture to young chess players at a contest in Nashville in late April.
“Disaggregated learning as the key to chess improvement.”
The Memphis Grizzlies of the NBA sponsored a contest in February. Not for the best slam dunk. Or 3-point shooting.
It was for poetry.
A merchant at a Nashville Farmer’s Market showed off a delectable treat during a live interview on WSMV-TV in May. She was asked how many calories it has, and responded:
“None ‘till you eat it.”
On Aug. 16, Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann wished Elvis Presley a happy birthday as she campaigned in Spartanburg, S.C.
One problem: It was the anniversary of his death, not his birthday.
Country star Brad Paisley was unfazed when 70 people at his July concert in upstate New York were arrested on various charges.
He tweeted: “Quite a performance in (Darien Lake) Saturday. We also played music.”
A 13-year-old boy in Smyrna started back in school in August and had the traditional assignment of disclosing how he spent his summer.
He told his eighth-grade classmates he had made explosive devices.
He was later charged with that crime.
This story is supposed to be about 2011 happenings, but we’re going to cheat by 10 seconds.
In Nashville, a brightly lit guitar dropping from a scaffolding track to count down the last seconds of 2010 got stuck 10 feet above the zero mark.
Embarrassed officials at the time blamed strong wind and rain. They amended it later to “operator error.”
The surveillance photo sure looked familiar to a Collierville woman. It was taken during a bank robbery Feb. 9 at a branch in a supermarket.
The photo showed her ex-husband, who was arrested and charged with bank robbery.
The body of a Chattanooga man was exhumed over the summer for an unusual reason.
According to The Chattanooga Times Free Press, the action was taken because the man was wearing dentures that belonged to an intensive care patient who had shared the same hospital room.
That wasn’t a big bass a fisherman caught in June at Old Hickory Lake north of Nashville.
It turned out to be an M-22 rifle grenade.
A bomb unit was called to detonate it.
A news release from the Memphis Symphony Orchestra promoted a Valentine’s weekend concert of romantic music that would put the audience “In The Mood.”
In February, police in Johnson City said they arrested a woman on charges of stealing a car and quoted her as saying she was cold and tired of walking.
Her home was three blocks away.
Hockey is known as a bloody sport. So it was not too surprising when the American Red Cross of Nashville picked a place in February to unveil a new bloodmobile: A Nashville Predators game.
When Grand Ole Opry singer Jean Shepard was chosen for the Country Music Hall of Fame after a long career, the 77-year-old reflected that she had “hung in there like a hair on grilled cheese.”
A new member of the Tennessee House of Representatives wrote in Hooters Magazine that her experiences working as a waitress at the restaurant primed her for success.
“If I could make it at Hooters, I could make it anywhere,” wrote Julia Hurley of Knoxville.
Published in The Messenger 1.4.12