25th Annual You Are So Nashville If... 

One thing that hasn't changed in all the time we've been at this alt-weekly thing is the willingness and ability of our readers to finish our thoughts for us — or this one thought in particular, at least: "You are so Nashville if ... "

The fact that we've been able to run an issue where every sentence starts with the same five words every year for a quarter-century is, if nothing else, a testament to y'all's ingenuity. (Or to our laziness? This is, almost literally, a half-baked idea for a cover story. Let's say ingenuity for the win-win.)

For as long as the Scene has been the Scene — did we mention it's been 25 years? — you have found hundreds of new ways to be the predicate to our subject, the coda to our chorus, the fin to our siècle. Without fail, your entries have run the gamut from funny to profane, whimsical to poignant, flip to bizarre — sometimes in the same entry — and have entertained us even as we argued over what was a winner and what was a weirdy. This year was no exception, with YASNIs touching on hot-button topics such as the future of Nashville's mass transit system, the ethics of capital punishment and that guy who tried to fuck an ATM, while peering deep into Music City's soul to capture, in half-sentence kernels, the essence of what makes this city — for better and worse — what it is. Some of you might need to take a deep breath, though?

As ever, thanks to everyone who submitted, congrats to those who made it in — good to see familiar names like Hunter, Hench, Dorr and Weaver alongside some welcome new blood — and cheers to you for reading. And remember, if you get most of these without having to Google, that can only mean one thing: You are so ... well, you know the rest.

  • Illustration: Alex Pearson of Familytree

First Place:

Your Amp goes to eleven, but not to Belle Meade —Zack Bennett

About the Winning Entry
The author of this year's winning "You Are So Nashville If ..." entry — "Your Amp goes to 11, but not to Belle Meade" — is a familiar name to longtime followers of the contest: Zack Bennett, a Nashville native who grew up in Mt. Juliet and now lives in Smyrna. Except for a brief period when he lived in Alabama, he says, he's been entering YASNI since 2005 and even managed a second-place finish a few years ago.

"I'm a big fan of This Is Spinal Tap, and the whole 'this amp goes to 11' scene is one of my favorites," says Bennett, who moonlights weekends on WSM-95.5 FM as an on-air personality. "With the craziness and indecision going on around the Amp bus, and the number of musicians here in town, I just married the two concepts."

Asked what makes his entry "so Nashville," Bennett says he was addressing the furor over the issue — perhaps this year's biggest vehicle for YASNI entries — as well as the proposed BRT line's branding.

"I know whoever was in charge of naming it was trying to be clever with the music tie-in, and it was just a good opportunity to exploit that and tie it into a classic movie scene," Bennett says. And as the noted philosopher David St. Hubbins says in the same movie, it's such a fine line between stupid and clever.

  • Illustration: Alex Pearson of Familytree

Second Place:

Your governor doesn’t want people on drugs except when he’s executing them. —Curt W. Porter
  • Illustration: Alex Pearson of Familytree

Third Place:

You’re excited that one day your children’s children will be able to buy wine in grocery stores. —Daniel Spartan Smith
Your favored mode of mass transit is the bandwagon. —Lesley Lassiter

On a Friday and/or a Saturday night, in an undisclosed rural location, from the cab or tailgate of your American-made pickup truck, while consuming homemade alcohol, you greeted a young woman wearing form-fitting denim with “hey, girl.” —Mike Dorr

  • Illustration: Alex Pearson of Familytree
You make a deliberately scratchy sounding old-timey record live on Fallon to release in hi-def on Pono. —Brian Siskind

You switched to a new "homeless newspaper" because they raised the price on your old one. —Daniel Spartan Smith

You flipped someone off in honor of Bud Adams' passing. —Jamie Yost

You can no longer afford to live in a bad neighborhood. —Lesley Lassiter

Your church approves of the electric chair, but not the Electric Slide. —Walker Dorris

  • Illustration: Alex Pearson of Familytree
Your kid asks you to check under the bed for Dave Ramsey. —Meredith Hunter

You're only proud that Nashville was voted the best barbecue from Travel and Leisure magazine because you hate Memphis that much. —Jackie Hughes

You think Will Pinkston could use a Snickers. —Meredith Hunter

You can't pronounce Laviolette or Whisenhunt correctly. —Zack Bennett

Amp yes or no defines your social circle. —Gene Dixon and Vicky Tataryn

Your "Amp Maybe" campaign never really took off like you thought it would. —Walker Dorris

School drop-off has been awkward ever since you accused one of the other parents of ripping off your music. —Lesley Lassiter

You finish your juice cleanse with hot chicken and queso. —Sarajane McMahon

You have to be Mike Dorr or Meredith Hunter to get your entry published. —Jackie Hughes

You think the "Stop Amp" and "Amp Yes" people are still arguing about Dylan going electric. —Jennifer Foshee

Ain't nobody going down your center lanes yo. —Trent Hanner

The highlight of your Green Hills shopping trip is that your kid got to pet Ann Patchett's dog. —Rachel White

You have totally checked out the man known as the "Contributor Casanova." —Rachel Schaffer

You would rather have John Rich for a neighbor than TMZ. —Laura Thrower

You know the difference between Derrick Mason and Derek Mason. —Bryan Voss

You spent an entire month's grocery budget on a food festival. —Bryan Voss

You think the Nashville Scene's Vodka Yonic column would be better if it were written by men. —John Marshall

Your public school system might as well be called Magnet-Charter, Holy Grail. —Wando Weaver

You won't shed a tear for the "Sushi Nazi" 'cause that guy was a dick. —Bryan Brown

You still insist that Johnny Depp is moving to town. —Daniel Smith

You've "always" loved hot chicken — since Hattie B's opened in Midtown. —Dan Schlacter

You think running for office in Williamson County is the funniest thing Victoria Jackson has ever done. —Jennifer Foshee

You think that some Nashville wives' lives were better kept a secret. —Andy Gasparini

You refer to Memphis as "that other barbecue town." —Jeff Bell

You built a world-class symphony hall and can only pay for it by having Melissa Etheridge and Kenny Rogers play there. —Brian Siskind

You're OK with an Amp that goes to 11 but not one that crosses 440. —Brady Mills

You'd rather Whiz than Munch. —Charlie Harris

You felt like a real-life activist when you heard about Supper + Song coming back to Imogene + Willie. —Wesley Hartline

You slow-clapped the Nashville Metro Council killing a $16 million Gulch Pedestrian Bridge project from your sidewalk-less street in south Nashville. —Wesley Hartline

You can remember when people used to go to Green Hills for dinner. —Caroline Rigsby

Your Pith comments carry a byline. —Meredith Hunter

You continue to pepper your indie folk songs with "early" Richard Florida quotes. —Willie Hall

You call Jeff Woods a Nazi, thereby proving your grasp of history is as tenuous as your grasp of science. —Meredith Hunter

You've ever uttered the phrase, "You call that a biscuit?" —Radley Balko

You ate all of your groceries waiting to get out of the Trader Joe's parking lot. —Walker Dorris

You can't wait to attend and support your favorite opposing team at a Titans game. —John Marshall

You wonder why the Nashville airport 1) advertises, and 2) advertises in Nashville. —Warner Jacobs

You pick a Twitter fight with Adam Gold to regain some YASNI relevance. —Meredith Hunter

Getting a sidewalk on your street counts as gentrification. —Robin Brown

You killed off all the best ones, so people stopped watching. —Meredith Hunter

You go to the Ryman to hear the Four Tops, the Schermerhorn to hear the Rev. Al Green, and East Park to hear the Nashville Symphony. —Jan Davis

You've noticed more money in your tip jar since you won The Voice. —Zack Bennett

You'd trade Stacey Campfield for two Bill Boners and a harmonica. —Chris Adams

You drive a little more carefully when the billboard says the emergency room wait time is longer than 15 minutes. —Lewis Pennock

You don't have a clue about anyone or thing that the Nashville Scene 25th Anniversary issue is talking about. —Connie Cathcart-Richardson

You haven't been this fired up about buses since Rosa Parks. —Mike Dorr

You don't know where your campaign fundraiser is being held. Which is cool, since neither will they. —Meredith Hunter

Go Perds! —Bryan Voss

Your T-shirt collection comes from Metro Council meetings. —Gene Dixon and Vicky Tataryn

You include "self-taught" in your bio thinking it ain't obvious. —Arthur Kirkby

You install a world-class carillon in a public mall just to have it play "Rocky Top" and "Love Me Tender." —Roger Spencer

You want someone you don't know fired the week before Christmas because she was shitty to someone you don't know. —Meredith Hunter

You tell visiting friends to stop by Tootsies at the airport so you don't have to take them downtown. —Kelly Lowen

You were sure that nothing could make Mitt Romney seem cool, and then you met Lee Beaman. —Bill Hench

You'll have what Scarlett's having. —Meredith Hunter

You know someone who's been hit by a car. —Emily Bush

You allow a domestic violence offender out of jail early twice in one day. —Zack Barnes

You pay $1 more for The Contributor so you don't have to read out-of-context Bible verses with typos. —Warner Jacobs

You thought Music City Center would have trouble meeting projections you silly goose you! —Trent Hanner

You swipe left on every dude who puts "East Nashville" in his Tinder bio. —Kelsey Hutchinson

You already miss Toby at Villager because now you just drink too fast. —Trent Hanner

You're about to open a can of whoop-ass on this Big Larry guy that keeps messin' with Cracker Barrel. —Bill Hench

After a night of drinking you find 20-plus "Stop Amp" signs in your backseat. —Lindsey Elias

Your church gets burglarized to the tune of half a million dollars in cash. —Paul Smethers

The term "soft opening" has been explained to you by a server the last three times you've gone to dinner. —Jay Yancey

Your degree is from the Taylor Swift Center for Education. —Stacy Harris

You threw a keg party at DeSano. —Bryan Voss

Your city is governed by a "small government" state legislature. —Russell Ries Jr.

You throw old Indian bones into the Sounds stadium construction site just to fuck with your mayor. —Andy Reuter

Farm-to-entry submission form. —Jen Berning

You think Nashville's best sports talk show host is a rock 'n' roll drummer. —Warner Jacobs

You've ignored a Nashville cast member at The Stone Fox. —Russell Ries Jr.

You're sick of your snobby East Nashville friends refusing to cross the river. —Michael Morosi

HCA's change of plans leaves Lake Palmer open for your hopes of the world's first subterranean IKEA store. —Matthew Parriott

You're fearful of a downtown multimillion-dollar civic project that alters city traffic and that no one will use, but realize the Music City Center has already been built. —Walker Dorris

You've had more than one heated argument about where the boundaries of East Nashville are. —Kevin Tucker

You have swiped Melrose happy hour tokens off the dresser of a one-night stand. —Anonymous

You thank God that there is no longer a restaurant called Kocktails and Kouture in town. —Eric Melcher

So it's like a really fast bus? But it's still a bus, right? —Andy Gasparini

Jack White is sorry you're a talentless hack. —Charlie Harris

You say "Faaang fin-gers" whenever you see someone pulled over by the police. —Stephen R. Parker

You think of Honky Tonk Central as a three-tiered filing cabinet for assholes. —Andy Gasparini

You have been personally victimized by Juliette Barnes. —Kira Harvath

You've taken a LOT of drunken pictures in front of the "I Believe in Nashville" mural ... like ... a lot. —Lindsey Elias

You Instagrammed your $8 grilled cheese. —Charlie Harris

You think Hick-Hop is when Ricky Skaggs jumps over Marty Stuart. —Bill Hench

You were really pissed off when you received a refund from the Nymbus indiegogo campaign. —Lindsey Elias

You're told the gig is from 10 to 1 and you ask, "At night?" —Matt North

Your restaurant is too classy to allow hats but flip-flops are OK. —Meredith Hunter

Your 1980s-era Vanderbilt diploma has drastically increased in prestige. —Robin Brown

The sound guy at The Rutledge has made fun of your gear, you, or both. —Matthew Rewinski

You're focused like a cat with ADHD on jobs. —Meredith Hunter

You can't recall having bought a subscription to USA Today for your daily paper. —Ken Lass

You think getting hit by a tractor-trailer truck will win you a recording contract. —Arthur Kirby

You're The New York Times. —Meredith Hunter

You've always just wanted a place to bowl, sing karaoke, drink coffee, eat pot roast, down a cocktail, play bocce and take a swim without having to move your car. —Radley Balko

You've had a Walmart steak at Jimmy Kelly's! —Steve Dobbrastine

You're anxiously anticipating the next major news article about Nashville that violates the space-time continuum. —Bryan Voss

You wish we had the bad boy Haslam brother instead. —Russell Ries Jr.

Your police chief is a badass. —Jamie Hollin

You can't wait not to go to a Sounds game at the new stadium. —Walker Dorris

You go to the early service at CrossPoint so you can start drinking earlier at the Titans game. —Rachel Schaffer

You received a cease-and-desist letter from Boaz Ramon at Genesis Diamonds. —Anonymous

You visit at least four farmers markets each week to make sure you don't hurt anyone's feelings. —Caroline Trost

Walgreens is inappropriate to sit on your strip of honky-tonks, but just fine to anchor the Avenue of the Arts. —Zack Bennett

You know it's Tuesday because Mike Byrd is screaming at your councilman on Twitter. —Thomas Hormby

Your neighbor's backyard chickens were delicious. —Zack Bennett

You like your executions like you like your governors ... shockingly ineffective. —Virginia McCoy

You hope Jeff Yarbro doesn't screw up because the Google Street View car took a photo of your house with a Yarbro sign. —Jeanne Brooks

You define "new Nashville" as the month after you moved here. —Michael Morosi

You're waiting for B-Cycle to roll out a pedal tavern before finally taking that first ride. —Matthew Parriott

You thought you were pretty liberal but still a little creeped out by the American Apparel ads on the back page of the Scene. —John Marshall

You're disappointed that the Sounds are moving now that their neighborhood is finally getting some buzz. —Michael Morosi

Judge Moreland waived your cooling off period. —Anonymous

You have had a Facebook check-in at "Green Hills Traffic." —Rachel Schaffer

You are easily upset by the closing of underground venues you never heard of. —Daniel Smith

You hope Anita Bugg and Bradley George resolve their on-air pledge drive tension before he leaves for Atlanta. —Thomas Hormby

You have no messages from the mayor. —Meredith Hunter

You and your masseuse consciously uncoupled when Metro police showed up. —Bill Hench

You know Picnic Table/ATM Guy wasn't the worst thing that happened in Murfreesboro that night. —Andy Gasparini

You know Will Pinkston and Kevin Huffman in a steel cage is the only way this is getting resolved. —Drew Gaskins

You're one polar vortex away from kicking Barak Shapiro's ass, and Nancy Van Camp is next. —Bill Hench

You make a big deal that your band recorded to 2-inch tape but play it back for friends with the speaker from your iPhone. —Jason Blackburn

You loved Carrie Underwood in The Sound of Music and you'd like to see Phil Valentine try "The Sound of Silence." —Bill Hench

Your food truck idea is better. —John Marshall

You're so polite to newcomers they actually believe they're welcome. —Matt North

You didn't give a second thought to the pretty brunette buying that tub of pork blood. —Meredith Hunter

Your church music director has to sign a non-compete clause. —Ken Lass

You decide to make the big move to East Nashville and buy a zero-lot-line duplex that looks like you never left Brentwood. —Lucia Folk

You're fighting to protect Historic Belmont. But you know ... "Historic" as in 2008 ... after most of the minorities had moved. —Michael Harrell

You've ceased getting your hopes up about wine in grocery stores and the new ballpark. Wait. What? —Jamie Yost

Blah blah blah, Austin 10 years ago, blah blah blah. —Michael Morosi

To your dismay and horror, a certain hymn will forever henceforth be linked with your governor's nocturnal potty habits. —Meredith Hunter

The Tennessean is still being delivered to your front door one year after you canceled your subscription. —Mick McLaughlin

You remember that sense of pride you got after your first retweet from @TheItCityPaper. —Matthew Parriott

You think Eighth Avenue is missing that warm, methy vibe that it once had. —Walker Dorris

You have attended three charity functions this year that required you wear "jorts." —Rachel Schaffer

You get in legal trouble for throat-punching Talk About Nashville Drivers Like They Are The Only Drivers Who Make Bad Driving Decisions guy. —Eric Taylor

You think you're trying something new. —Allen Gibbs

Your family vacation was four artist passes to Bonnaroo. —Ferrell Garramone

Hughes and Coleman are screening your calls. —Bill Hench

You heard John Rich wants to buy the giant guitar scoreboard and convert it to a mailbox. —Bill Hench

You figured out what SoBro means. We need to be careful about nicknaming the North Dickerson Pike area. —Bill Hench

You may never realize your dream of seeing Billy Ray Cyrus and David Hasselhoff perform together, but Florida Georgia Line comes pretty darn close. —Bill Hench

Instead of Val Kilmer as Mark Twain at the Ryman, you would have rather seen Val Kilmer as Jim Morrison as Mark Twain at Chaffin's Barn. —Matt North

You applaud Karl Dean for bringing baseball back to Sulphur Dell. You'll recommend sainthood when he returns Heaven Lee to The Black Poodle. —Bill Hench

Chas Sisk won't drink with you. —Meredith Hunter

You worked at the Scene for a decade but didn't get invited to the 25-year anniversary. —Nels Noseworthy

Your kinda night includes a catfish dinner and shootin' the first sumbitch that starts singin' about it. —Bill Hench

All you know about gluten is it tastes great with butter. —Matt North

You think We Shield Millions is a cool new band in town. —Aaron Gumpenberger

You didn't flinch when Miley Cyrus kissed Katy Perry but the real test will come when Charlie Daniels and Colt Ford reach second base. —Bill Hench

You think a homeless guy selling newspapers on the sidewalk is a safety issue but a Shriner standing in the middle of the turn lane isn't. —Meredith Hunter

You think performing music for free is normal. —Sam Cooper

You saw Demetria Kalodimos at the Marshalls at Nashville West and wondered what happened to her exclusive deal with The French Shoppe. —Bryan Voss

You're relieved that you can finally stop explaining what your mups are and why they're lit. —Meredith Hunter

You quit frequenting your neighborhood hot chicken shack after it was featured in Saveur. —Emily Bush

You associate Frothy Monkey with coffee instead of a sex act. —Daniel Hicks

You had your picture taken with a Nashville cast member?! Unfriend. —Ryan Barry

You pay for the fastest Internet service to increase your chances of getting Ryman tickets. —Matt Hagler

You found out the hard way that oil-pulling causes a sharp decline in reading comprehension. —Meredith Hunter

Your living room has reclaimed barn wood and your barn is a recording studio. —Eric Melcher

You took a close look at our beloved Athena statue. When you get past all the bling it's basically Shoney's Big Boy in drag. —Bill Hench

You love dressing up for Halloween parties. Spoiler alert, The Tennessean is going as USA Today. —Bill Hench

You like your hot chicken white. —Charlie Harris

You time your visit to Phat Bytes deli to be when the staff is the optimal level of high. —Andy Gasparini

You want to punch Snowbird in his stupid, lying face. —Caroline Rigsby

Dave Ramsey has investigated you for running a parody account on Twitter. —Michael Taylor

Your power grid is brought down routinely by a single raccoon in the year 2014. —Brian Siskind

You read the alt-weekly for political coverage and the daily for celebrity coverage. —Meredith Hunter

You rate hot chicken by the second burn. —Linda Dubin

You still post the pic of a now-dead lynx every day. —Meredith Hunter

You cried when Lamar Wyatt died. (Looking at you, J.R. Lind.) —Zack Bennett

You can't stand hypocrisy. If you're against the electric chair don't be showin' off your new Prius. —Bill Hench

You keep 91.1 FM programmed on your car radio out of tribute but refuse to listen out of principle. —Doug Brumley

You spent an afternoon raptly watching coverage of the Centennial Park goose rescue operation but don't know who your state representatives are. —Meredith Hunter

Your job involves wearing a denim apron, but no machinery. —Emily Bush

The Weirdies

Crook & Chase are your favorite duo since Batman & Robin; but holy teasefest, when is she going to let him enter the cave.

When you are putting in stitches in a child at work, your patient's parent is singing to calm them down and you join in in perfect harmony. True story. Only in Nashville.

You're a desensitized egotistical fashioner posing as a musician, climbing on the bones of broken dreams around you to reach the top of the shit heap.

You brought a gallon of mayonnaise to the CMA Festival because you can never have too much sunscreen.

You feel all warm and fuzzy seeing satellite companys adverstising their 12 months, no contract plan for peanuts when you're locked into a paying through the nose contract until the middle of next year.

You think riding the bus would be cool, but ONLY IF IT'S TAKING UP THE ENTIRE FUCKING MEDIAN! #AMP

You've lived here for seven years, but you're still so Chicago that you receive all of the Bear Down Nashville emails but refuse to attend any of the watch parties for fear that the person who runs the group will not live up to the vision of an SNL Super Fan that you have imagined, and you just can't deal with that level of disappointment.

You haven't given up on getting Bud Adams back to the Super Bowl. You're stubborn, you're proud, you're a taxidermist.

You did a double take at that silver robot cowboy guy on Broadway. Back in the day, he must have had a private rodeo with Jason Aldean's mother.

You spot a celebrity and discreetly whisper your "find" to the person you're with and can then manage to control yourself, not be a nuisance, smile, or give a thumbs up and move along without causing a scene!

She won't ride shotgun in your front seato, you be lookin' like a sasquatch chillin' in your speedo.

You see a sign that says, "Baby on Board," but it is a babydoll nailed to a board.

Your cousins uncle brother. . Had a number n one hit.

Paying over $5 for parking really, really irks you. Like really. (Sorry, Tony).

YOUR Granny AND YOUR Girl wear the "wifebeaters" IN YOUR Household!

You refer to a duck toilet as Lake Watauga. Newsflash, your dog just created Mount Roverloaf.

Your grandma invited you to brunch at Cheekwood. She says the oatmeal IV is out of this world.

You're desperately hoping this doesn't wind up in the "weird entries" list.

Past Winners

1989: You think our Parthenon is better because the other one fell apart. —Susan Fenton

1990: Your mayor is married and engaged at the same time. —Maralee Self

1991: You say to the person behind the counter at the Hot Stop, "We really kicked y'all's ass in that Desert Storm." —Willie D. Sweet Jr.

1992: You go to a Hank Williams Jr. concert at Starwood and pass out before Hank does. —Ted W. Davis III

1993: Your church congregation is referred to as "the studio audience." —Sharon Kasserman

1994: You think that the H.O.V. lane is for people with AIDS. —Paul Allen

1995: No winner

1996: You never meant to stay here this long. —Robert Jetton

1997: You've checked your flower bed for Janet March. —Terry Robertson

1998: You're the only one who doesn't know you're gay. —Diana Hecht

1999: You dig up your mom. —Rick Hagey

2000: You want to vote Brad Schmitt off the island. —Chad Tribble

2001: Your minister follows the Nine Commandments. —Ken Lass

2002: Towns you've never heard of are going to be hit by a tornado at 6:51, 6:53 and 7:01 p.m. —Rick Hagey

2003: You returned a friendly Southern wave to Adam Dread as he veered across Franklin Pike. —Cindy Parrish

2004: You need a war to sell records. —Joe Scutella

2005: Your governor gives TennCare beneficiaries McDonald's instead of health care coverage. —Ken Lass

2006: You were a gay cowboy before being a gay cowboy was cool. —Michael Williams

2007: You saw Kenny Chesney in a Kroger reading Out & About. —Michael Williams

2008: Your DUI arrest gets a five-star rating on YouTube. —Roy Moore

2009: Your local GOP makes the KKK look like the ACLU. —Jonathan Belcher

2010: Your city flooded and all you got was a lousy T-shirt. —David Anthony

2011: Gay gay gay, gay gay; gay gay gay gay gay. —Dana Delworth

2012: You think Bart Durham should direct the Real Housewives of Nashville. —Holly Matthews

2013: You think the TV show should have been called Mount Juliette. —Bill Hench

Email editor@nashvillescene.com.

  • Illustration: Alex Pearson of Familytree


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