As I was driving to work and listening to a news update on my favorite radio station (which is now on TWITTER!), I was struck by the number of sort of strange stories emanating out of my chosen home state. So I thought I’d share some of them with you.
• Heard that news story about the grandfather who kidnapped his grandchildren back in 1989 and was recently charged? Yeah, that happened in Murfreesboro, Tenn., a suburb of Nashville. The whole story strikes me as a Mary Higgins Clark novel come to life, and I feel so sorry for everyone involved. The children, now grown, refused to be reunited with the parents, which must have been hard. I don’t know the particulars of the situation and have only heard part of the parents’ side of the story, but there are two sides to every tale and the truth usually lies somewhere in the middle.
• A Nashville teacher is off the job for awhile while the school board sorts out the mess stemming from accusations he taped several students’ mouths shut. Now, my teachers used to threaten this, but it was a JOKE! I would have thought that most people had the good sense NOT to actually do this. Though I can understand the impulse to do this. Have you ever worked with junior high girls? They. don’t. stop. talking. ever.
• This one isn’t just Nashville, but I laughed so hard about it on the way to work. (Mindy: you’re cousin’s theory on how people are entertaining themselves during the recession seems to be gaining acceptance!) The news guy on the radio reported that USA Today is reporting that condom sales are rising as the economy dips. My favorite line in the report was the reporter extolling: Americans are finding it as a cheap way to entertain themselves. I laughed so hard.
• In other news that doesn’t really have a Tennessee connection, I also read on USA Today that Ryan Adams and Mandy Moore are engaged. My hair muse and one of my favorite musicians. It’s just so . . .weird. I’d seen pics of them together previously, but read statements from both and publicists galore saying they were “just friends.” Weird. Weird. Weird. Also weird, the way the article describes Ryan and the one song picked from his entire body of work to encapsulate him. It’s just not what I would have chosen.
• Apparently at a luncheon for the National Press Club on Tuesday, Dolly Parton was speaking as an ambassador for the Great Smoky Mountain National Park (how I love thee!). Anyway, apparently someone suggested she run for president. Her response was, “I think we have enough boobs in the White House.” Makes me laugh on so many levels.
• And finally, in Dayton, Tenn., home of the Scopes Monkey trial, the smell of chicken manure recently caused authorities in Rhea County to close the schools for a half day. Apparently, the stench was just too much. I guess I’m used to that smell, since it’s a quite popular fertilizer on the farm. Oh, well, the idea of school closing because it was too smelly outside cracks me up!