Lost in the fifties

Sandra ClarkGossip and Lies, N/E Knox County

Sometimes my van has a mind of its own. That’s my only excuse for the weird “shortcuts” I take to get around town.

Juana Barker, as a kid learning English, called them “longcuts.”

So, last week I’m heading to Brimer Monument. I know where it is. But I got in my head Williford Monument on Rifle Range Road. The woman at Williford was talking with customers. A man waved me over, pointed to his ear and said he’s sent his hearing aids for repair. That’s my cue to talk louder.

“Brimer,” I shout. “Brimer Monument. I’m looking for Brimer.”

“We’re Williford,” he says. “We’ve been here 50 years.” I scrambled out the door and into my car. Called Brimer and apologized. Headed out that way – 7108 Asheville Highway. Piece of cake.

My van, however, missed the exit off Interstate 40 at Asheville Highway. I had to take the Strawberry Plains exit, wind up to Asheville Highway, turn back toward town and look for Brimer on the left. Of course, I ran past it. But in the process of being lost, I spotted a church sign asking: Do you have any idea where you are going?

Why no, I thought. And worse – I don’t know where I am or where I’ve been.

Good move, Burchett: NATO Secretary General Jens Stollenberg addressed a joint meeting of Congress yesterday (4/3) and Rep. Tim Burchett invited Victor Ashe to attend as his guest. Ashe, a 16-year mayor of Knoxville before going to Poland from 2004 to 2009, is the “only living resident of Tennessee’s second congressional district who served as an ambassador to a NATO nation,” said Burchett in a press statement that somehow sounded more like Ashe than Burchett.

Bad hire, Bill: Gov. Bill Lee has hired former state Rep. Joe Carr to a $135,000 job as assistant commissioner of the state Department of Environment and Conservation, according to reports from Nashville. Why is this a bad hire, you ask?

Bill Lee and Joe Carr, July 3, 2018, from Carr’s Facebook page.

  • Carr has few credentials for this job. Read his bio here.
  • The hire is political payback. Carr endorsed Lee on Facebook on July 3, 2018 – just a month ahead of the critical Republican Primary where Lee edged out Randy Boyd, Beth Harwell and Diane Black for the GOP nomination for governor.
  • Carr has been repudiated repeatedly by voters: He lost to Lamar Alexander in the 2014 GOP Primary. He lost to Chris Devaney for state GOP chair. He tried to unseat then-Rep. Diane Black in 2016, losing by a 2-1 margin. In 2018, he lost to Shane Reeves 65 percent to 35 percent in a race for the Republican nomination for state Senate in District 14 near Murfreesboro, per the Tennessee Journal’s newsletter, On the Hill.


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