ear (2006-28)

Just Down the Block

Term-Limit Sunshine

New GM for the Ice Bears

Still Big in London

Today’s News in Yesterday’s Tennessean

Bug in Our Ear

Just Down the Block

Term-Limit Sunshine

Private conversations, with the possibility of political pressure, give the appearance of impropriety. And God knows we wouldn’t want anything improper to happen in all this charter mess. The committee is to finish with recommendations to “fix” the county Charter by mid-August in the hope that Chancellor John Weaver will back off his ruling that the Charter is invalid. The committee meets each Thursday.

There is a possibility that the committee’s recommended changes to the charter could be put on the ballot for the November election, and, if approved by the voters, the Charter would be restored. If a new charter is required, then the clock for term limits would be reset and officeholders would get another two terms before the limits take effect. Courthouse officials would much prefer that scenario rather than being forced to leave office this term.

Of course, all that could be moot depending on a state Supreme Court ruling. The court will hear arguments Sept. 6, bypassing the appeals court.

New GM for the Ice Bears

Of course rumors are abundant. Some say that Dixon was temperamental, and that he never got along with the city officials who ran the Civic Coliseum. Others say that he simply cared too much for his team.

“He wasn’t pressured to retire, no,” says Kendra Barnard , a member of the team’s ownership group. “Preston went to bat with us on a lot of issues. He had a difficult position.”

After the Ice Bears’ first season, they were operating in the red. Dixon replaced Tommy Benizio as GM, and the team began to turn a profit. Last year, the Bears won a President’s Cup, and game attendance is almost up to early-’90s Cherokee standards. “We’ve already outsold last year’s season ticket numbers,” Barnard says. “Winning a championship really brought us some credibility.”

But why would Dixon leave such a lucrative position?

“He just wanted to get into something different, I believe,” says Mike Murray , who will be replacing Dixon as GM.

“Mayor Haslam has bent over backwards for us,” Barnard says of their relationship with the city. And the rumors continue, claiming that the city had always been at odds with Dixon.

“I don’t know anything about that,” says Bob Polk , director of public facilities at the coliseum. “You’ll have to ask the owners.”

Dixon could not be reached for comment. Rumor has it that he’s enjoying a comfortable hiatus in Canada. Barnard says that he will be back to help during the managerial transitional period.

Still Big in London

They look like mere kids, perhaps about the time they were enrolled at Knoxville’s West High, or when they departed for points Nashvillian.

It’s there just to illustrate a featured poem by well-known Irish poet Paul Muldoon . “Sillyhow Stride,” nearly 100 stanzas long, appears to be addressed to the late singer/songwriter Warren Zevon , but repeatedly refers to the Everlys, sometimes confusing them with Frank and Jesse James —and their 1961 hit, “Walk Right Back.” An end note clarifies that Zevon got into show business via a gig as musical director for the Everlys in the early ’70s.

“’I’ll do my crying in the rain / with Don and Phil,’ / said Yamasaki-san, ‘I’ll do my crying with Frank and Jesse waiting for a train....’” The reference is apparently to the architect of the World Trade Center, another repeated theme of the poem.

It’s all very puzzling, but it’s not every day that a couple of West High kids make the cover of the TLS , so we thought we’d mention it.

Today’s News in Yesterday’s Tennessean