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Variety Of Angles

December 22, 2004

As I begin this column, it's 3:02 AM Central time. But I don't care. Why? It's Christmas season vacation for me. And I have so much to write about that I don't even know where to begin. "Begin at the beginning," the foolish might say. But sometimes the best stories start in other places.

As Richard, Matt and I walked two girls (Jessica and Missy) to their car in a parking garage on 2nd Avenue in Nashville tonight, after an evening at the brand new Coyote Ugly, I commented, "Mmm, that's fresh urine!" as we waited in the little alcove area for the elevator to arrive. That got everyone to laugh, even the girls. You know you're on when you can make a piss joke and even get girls laughing at it.

Remarkably, my Christmas shopping is almost complete. Today (as in yesterday, Tuesday 12/21) I ended up out at Cool Springs Galleria with my Mom and my Aunt Nancy. Traffic was a nightmare, but I wasn't driving so I didn't particularly care. It meant that a trip to Best Buy was out of the question, but that proved to be okay.

With remarkable speed, I made my way through the packed mall and found what I needed. I'm analytical by nature, and in situations involving shopping that can be a good thing. I'm not the type where the shopping is half the pleasure, let me be clear. I want what I want, and I want it quickly. Chop chop, no screwing around.

By 2 PM I had my shopping list complete (except for Aunt Nancy and Mom), though they needed another half hour. I then dicked around at the mall, walking with my long strides (I'm 6'2" and I walk fast; don't like it, get out of my way). I did visit a few stores out of curiosity, including Things Overpriced... err, I mean Things Remembered. Over at the bookstore, I noticed that the selections seemed rather uninspired for some reason. I have this inspiration to write a parody book about "The Five People You Meet In Heaven" (by Mitch Albom) called "The Five People You Meet In Hell" with characters like the Executive Meddler (overbearing, horrid manager with carte blanche from management). Maybe it would help to actually read the book before I start planning a parody of it, but still I think my idea is strong. Or something like that.

After fighting through an even more insane line of mall traffic on the way out, we made our way to the Nolensville Road Kroger's grocery store. This was supposed to be a quick trip. Supposed to be. I think you know where this is going. My Aunt ended up writing an out-of-state check to pay for her purchase, and that sent us into a good 10 minute long delay. Meanwhile, I hadn't had lunch yet and it was past 4 PM, so I was starting to turn into Surly Lou. To call it an exercise in patience would be an understatement.

But you know... after having had to work Christmas weeks in years past in the TV news biz, even things like that aren't as bad as they could be. Perspective is key, I guess.

Tonight my whole family went out to 3rd and Lindsley, a bar in town, and saw the Karg Boys perform in concert. It was a tremendous show. Richard and Andy Karg are excellent musicians (I've discussed this before), but in the year plus since I saw their last show, they're improved their stage presence considerably. They have all the talent to make it in the country music biz, and I hope they do.

I've been playing some of my sister Mary Beth's The Sims 2 game, adding my own flair and approach to things. Unfortunately, we had a really tough time getting the game to load, which might be associated with some scratches on the disc. Uh oh... Luckily my bro Matt had a CD cleaner which I used on it. Since then it's been working fine. I'm knocking feverishly on wood as I type this paragraph, by the way.

On Christmas Night I will get to see the Titans host the Broncos. People not familiar with the Titans might think their team is just bad this year, but in reality the squad has been beset with an inordinate amount of injuries, particularly on the defensive side. And now with Chris Brown (starting RB) and Steve McNair (starting QB) out for the year and nothing to play for, you might think that it'd be a cakewalk. But their opponent is Denver, which has Jake Plummer, the most overrated QB in the NFL.

Speaking of that game, I happened to catch the WSMV 6 PM newscast last night and heard Rudy Kalis (longtime local sports anchor) bemoaning the fact that the Titans were playing on Christmas. He seemed to be editorializing from the anchor position, which is a no-no. I like Rudy, don't get me wrong. I suppose you can get away with it in sports, but it struck me as unnecessary.

Reading The Tennessean this morning, it seems that Nashville has become a rather depressing place on the freedom tip. Scanning the articles, I found stories about how local officials were bullying porn shop owners out of business (under prostitution laws), how Williamson County is using expensive electronic bracelets to monitor the *sweat* of DUI offenders (lest they consume any alcohol, or use any mouthwash I suppose, during their sentence time), and how the family a guy who died of meningitis while in jail sued the county that was holding him and ended up with a $755,000 payday. Government gone wild, trial lawyers gone wild, and nothing seemed to question it. This isn't calling out The Tennessean; this sort of thing happens in the media daily. I find it sickening though, and it makes me all the more fervent in my Libertarian stance.

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