incoming (2006-45)

Here Art Thou Stones

Some Accolades

Letter Page as Torture Chamber

When Pedestrians and Automobiles Collide

The answer is that UT turned down offers by The Rolling Stones to play concerts at Neyland Stadium on both the “Voodoo Lounge” and the “Bridges to Babylon” tours in the 1990s. I am still searching to try to find the articles that I clipped about the subjects. The News Sentinel ratted on UT in both cases and also printed my foul letter concerning the matter. In one case, they (the UT elite) stated that there was concern about damage to the field. The excuse for the next denial was that they (same people) could not figure out how to handle the traffic.

Being an alumnus of UT, I believe that it is a big waste of money to allow the stadium to remain unused except for a couple of football games per year.

As a result, my wife and I attended the concert in Vanderbilt stadium, in which the field was covered by the promoters to protect it, and the concert in Columbia, S.C. There was no violence, no open drugs, no rioting, etc. Both concerts were attended by a mixed-age group including couples our age with young children.

You should have seen the reaction of people in the line going inside when we announced that we were from Knoxville, the city that twice turned down The Rolling Stones!

P.S. In another News Sentinel article, it was hinted that UT also turned down Pink Floyd!

R.B. Knott

Editor’s Note: UT turned down the Rolling Stones for a proposed concert at Neyland Stadium at least once in the 1970s, too.

Some Accolades

Disease-ridden decadent unwashed barbarians all, none are safe from their uncivilized, un-Knoxvillian ways. When their ilk infest fair Knoxville none are safe, not our children, our old people, not even our pets. Tourists are offensive and disgusting and like cockroaches must be stamped out. Now that that’s out on the table….

My congratulations to the fair city of Knoxville for its latest strike against the scourge of tourism (only a few letters short of “terrorist”—coincidence?) here in Knoxville. I am of course referring to that pit of tourist inequity, the so-called “Candy Factory.”

Artists, artwork, sculptures, dance, music, vegetarian feasts… like cheese for rats there was no end of community tourist-attracting activities at the “Candy Factory,” until our city squashed it dead like the insect it was. Thank God it’s now safe in the hands of developers and the wealthy that will get the private condos they deserve....

Bravo city of Knoxville! Bravo to the Knoxville City Council! Everyday as I walk by the Candy Factory’s ripped-out guts laying on the sidewalk eviscerating any tourist or community activity from that former hub of tourist and community activity, I feel a little more pep in my step. I walk a little more cheerfully past it and the empty multi-million-dollar dual convention centers across the ex-pedestrian walkway every day....

Bravo city of Knoxville for letting one of the so-called “architectural wonders of the world” (the amphitheatre between the empty convention centers and the gutted ex-community center) rot and lay unrepaired, further repelling the tourist hoards. Combined with the masterful selling off of the artists’ collective swarm that was the Victorian houses, the city has exhibited a grand distaste of anything resembling community building activities—and the resulting tourist swarms....

Any general would be proud of the strategic and tactical maneuvers our fair city has taken to protect our citizens from tourist outbreaks. From tearing down the community back porch behind the Victorian houses, leaving behind an empty weed lot across from the Candy Factory (try playing there now local musicians!!), to destroying the only community, art, music center of its type in our town, there are few measures left to take. But I humbly offer two suggestions, which I believe logically follows our city’s scorched-earth philosophy regarding tourist and community centers.

The first is obvious: decapitation of any tourist and placing their heads on spikes around the Candy Factory and any other potential community/tourist drawing location. This so clearly follows the existing policies of our city that I almost hesitate to suggest it—it’s probably working its way through the PBA and City Council as I type. It is the next one, though, that might add to the genius of our city’s anti-tourist activity.

We must bring the battle to the tourist where they live—or we will have to fight them here in Knoxville. It is not enough to stamp out any attempt or appearance of tourist attracting community activity! A pre-emptive anti-tourist strategy is the final solution to our tourist infestation problems. We must send our police and City Council to New  York City, San Francisco, Atlanta and anywhere else and fight the tourists there so we don’t have to fight them here at home. Perhaps our City Council can pay people to put pictures on the telephone poles of major cities of tourist heads on spikes in Knoxville to further discourage visitors. After destroying community spaces and the locations that create the community spirit that causes people to want to come visit, there isn’t much more our city can do.

And I for one applaud them.  

Chris Irwin

Letter Page as Torture Chamber

Everybody says they are in favor of truth and beauty and against torture—as am I. But truth, beauty and torture are not perceived in the same light by all. Instead of wasting my time (if I had continued to read that trash) reading page after page of letters and columns printed to denounce the use of theoretical “torture” or “torture” in the abstract; let’s get specific. What is “torture”?

Are you against keeping captured prisoners up past their bedtime? Are you in favor of depriving them of ice cream on their apple pie? Are you dead set against demeaning their religion for long periods at high volume? Would you lie awake worrying that their air conditioning might fail on a hot night? Is the possibility that guards might laugh at the inadequacy of prisoners’ genitals more than you can bear? Should a captor who tears a page from a copy of the Koran be hanged? Would you object to prisoners having to hear Slim Whitman recordings on the PA system for hours? Are you against water boarding? Do you even know what water boarding is? What specific activities do you consider to be “torture”?...

My belief is that if you are a high-value prisoner in captured combatant status who has undergone incidents of physical harsh treatment without suffering long periods of extreme agony, losing consciousness, or being permanently injured or disfigured, you are not doing too badly.

In the future let’s have a rule that, if you intend to inflict your displeasure with “torture” on unsuspecting readers you first specify the particular acts that displease you. Otherwise your long-winded discourse should be considered “torture” and tossed in the nearest appropriate receptacle.

John N. Harding

When Pedestrians and Automobiles Collide

Hannah Blair, Dena Charles, Diane Krause, Alicia Peterson & Amina Sandal

Guidelines for Incoming Mail