bender 
Member since Apr 7, 2010

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Re: “Walking Horse Group Slams Tennessean, Paper Stands By Reporting

I was born & raised in Shelbyville. No connection to walking horses other than, like other Shelbyvillians of my age- mid 30s-, I have nostalgic memories of the Horse Show. We got out of school for a week ever year because so many people rented out their houses. For kids in town, the Horse Show was a mini-summer vacation. I worked at the civic booths- I boxed donuts at the Optimist Club booth (I still have the Homer Simpson-mmmm reaction thinking about those cakey fried donuts). We roamed the Celebration grounds in our ever-changing cliques of friends, gossiped, snuck away to awkwardly make out with new or old flames, & just generally did teenager stuff. That stuff you later look back on as those good, carefree times of youth. I always explained the Horse Show to friends (not from Shelbyville) who didn't get it as more of a county/state fair- where you sometimes see a horse. Invariably, no matter where I've traveled, someone generally knows Shelbyville from the Walking Horse connection. This has, until recently, been pretty cool. How else would someone in LA, Maine, Seattle, or Hawaii know about a small town in Southern Middle Tennessee? I think folks miss how tightly & pridefully the Celebration is tied up with identity in Shelbyville.

The cruelty of the owners, trainers, and breeders association is inexcusable. We all know that Southerners, to good & bad ends, luxuriate & wallow in the past. Training for the big lick is a practice from the 1930s. The industry's stubborn refusal to recognize that the world is now a different place has locked the celebration in the past. And so, it's a dying event. I think the commenter above nailed the comparison with Sea World. It's sad, in some ways, because the Celebration was a boon to Shelbyville's economy. But the abuse has to stop &, if it doesn't, the Celebration will only be a thing that is remembered- and not nostalgically.

20 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by bender on 08/31/2014 at 11:06 AM

Re: “The Weekly Open Thread: It's Corn Season!

Grilled corn- then slathered with mayo- then topped with Demos' seasoning salt. Like crack.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by bender on 07/11/2014 at 8:08 PM

Re: “Memo to Memphis: All Your Barbecue Are Belong to Us

Not sure about who has the best BBQ, but pretty sure this comment thread shows Memphis is #1 world-wide in thinned-skin'd defensiveness. The Memphians doth protest too much, methinks.

7 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by bender on 05/22/2014 at 5:43 PM

Re: “The Weekly Open Thread Gets Sentimental for Mother's Day

My Granny was one of those Southern cooks- could make just about anything, from scratch, and it'd be great. This will be the first Mother's Day since she passed & it's going to be tough. Jack, I'm with you, those food memories can bring back a flood of emotions. Like I said, Granny could cook anything (she was especially proud of her hummingbird cake), but my favorites were her pinto beans, fried pork chops, chocolate pie, & scratch angel biscuits (that's what she'd always make when I came home from college for a weekend). But my absolute all-time number one was her white beans- they were better than cake. Miss you Granny!

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by bender on 05/09/2014 at 5:59 PM

Re: “The Weekly Open Thread: French Food — Great Cuisine, or Greatest Cuisine?

Anyone know if the Calypso Cafe in Cool Springs has closed for good or just moved?

Posted by bender on 04/19/2014 at 6:41 PM

Re: “This Week's Open Thread: Is Nashville's Cuisine Exportable?

My impression is that meat & 3, as a description of a restaurant or part of a menu, is a Middle & East TN thing. And people- never wonder if Nashville cuisine exportable, just pull off any interstate exit ramp & pop into a Cracker Barrel. It the corporatized Frankenstein bastard child version of it, but a version of it nonetheless.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by bender on 02/01/2014 at 10:18 AM

Re: “Will Building The Amp Force Us to Ride The Amp?

This is why we can't have nice things

5 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by bender on 01/15/2014 at 6:01 PM

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