Running With the BullsNot
A dark and stormy day, it was, a day when the fates came together to deliver a double whammy right between the eyes of the woman who is at once Knoxville's biggest Bulls fan and Victor Ashe's most persistent nemesis.
For Carlene "Too Tall" Malone, Jan. 12, 1999 will forever be the day that Michael Jordan announced his retirement from basketball, and Bud Gilbert announced his decision not to run for mayor.
She is philosophical about the grim turn of events: "I think both were anticipated."
She admits that people ("Maybe 10") started asking her to run when they heard Gilbert wasn't, although this is a possibility on which she long ago shut the door.
"I don't want to be mayor. That's the best reason I know."
No word on whether she will hang tough with the Bulls sans Jordan.
But Wait! There's More!
Some members of the city's uniformed employees are mulling over the notion of a "Draft Bud" movement. Watch for this to surface very soon, if it is to be taken seriously. Gilbert says there's no chance that he will relent.
But some of the erstwhile Gilbert supporters may be interested in the red and white vinyl "Tarpy for Mayor" bumper stickers cropping up recently. The Tarpy in question would be GOP county chair Lynn Tarpy, who says he's "...Being pushed by some folks...to the extent they've even had bumper stickers made up."
Tarpy declines to identify who's doing the pushing, beyond saying it's "the business community."
He attracted some attention last month with a letter he sent to Ashe and members of City Council outlining his ideas for Knoxville's future.
"Others have seized on that as a platform," Tarpy says. While he says he doesn't "want to lend a lot of credence to it," he says the letter outlined ideas in education reform, crime and fire protection enhancements, and downtown development. He even proposes a way to fund the innovationsa 7 percent spending cut across the board in the city. "I don't think anybody would notice it," he says. He also proposes selling the airport and using the income off the proceeds to fund innovations.
Chances of his candidacy?
"Never say never."
Now He Tells Us
The following is an excerpt from a story about the most recent meeting of the International Association of Chiefs of Police from the Street Survival Newsline, an email bulletin sent out to members of the law enforcement community, published by Calibre Press. It describes a panel discussion recently held in Salt Lake City, in which our own Chief Phil Keith was a participant.
The topic? Stress.
"We end with a few miscellaneous comments and observations of interest made during the session:
"Here's how Knoxville Police Chief Phil Keith describes his quest for the job of chief:
"'Eleven years ago when I thought I wanted to be chief, I'd always seen a dog chasing a car. I never knew what it was like to chase a car until I chased the chief's job and I got it; and then I didn't know what the hell to do. I didn't have a license for it, and I knew damn good and well I couldn't drive it.'"