Dining and Duck!

No, I don’t mean dining on duck. I was wondering whether today is a good day to dine out in Tennessee. I ask because this is the day the new law goes into effect allowing people with valid permits to pack heat in restaurants serving alcohol.

Don't come in strapped!

Don't come in strapped!

The upside is that businesses retain the right to ban guns from their premises… as long as they post notices to that effect. So, as a public service, the Memphis Restaurant Association is already printing up “no guns” decals (like the one to the left) for member restaurants to post.

I’m not quite sure why it’s necessary to make it legal to pack heat into places serving liquor — doesn’t quite seem the combination that you’d want — does it? I’m sure that the geniuses in the Legislature had a reason for passing the bill, then overriding the governor’s veto. Let me stress, I’ve no problem with people owning guns; I’m just a little worried about where people are going to be waving them around.  Would you like some bullets with that shake, sir?

Moving into the 21st Century

Tag! You're It!

Tag! You're It!

On the other hand, the folks in Nashville have come up with a good idea. The state’s department of revenue is rolling out a new vehicle registration system. It’ll keep track of every tag and decal issued in the state each year, all 6.5 million of them. That’s not the good part though.

The good part is that by using TRUST (Title and Registration User System for Tennessee), people will be able to renew their car tags online. Yes, online. Something other states have been doing for years.

The Memphis paper reprinted the story from the Nashville newspaper, so there are no details on how they plan to make that work for people getting their cars inspected in Memphis. Georgia ties vehicle inspection into the tag registration system, so drivers don’t have to carry that inspection certificate to a clerk’s office and stand in line (which is a lot more likely in Memphis since they claim to have fired all the people taking cash to let drivers skip inspections). The system rolls out this fall. I’m hoping the bugs get worked out before I have to renew. I don’t mind sitting in line for inspection… it’s the schlep to the clerk’s office for a decal that chaps me.

A Coke and a Smile

The Ted’s getting a new bottle of Coke. If you’ve spent any time in Atlanta, you probably know that the home of the Atlanta Braves, Turner Field, is nicknamed “The Ted.” since it was named for former team owner Ted Turner. It’s a nice place to watch a ball game (more so in the past when the Braves won regularly).

A nickel for recycling?

A nickel for recycling?

A honking huge Coke bottle used to loom over far left field at the Ted, promoting the drink, which also calls Atlanta home. I don’t know, but the thing may have been up there since the Olympics back in ’96. When one of the home team hits a home run, fireworks would shoot out near there, reminding you that you’re thirsty. Anyway, they’ve retired the old “Sky Field” bottle, and place to replace it with a new high tech model.

They’re going to roll baseball icon Hank Aaron and some Coke bigwigs this Thursday to unveil the new “21st Century” bottle (everybody’s moving into the new century… that’s been going on for almost nine years now!). The new deal is even more glitzy and colorful that the old one, containing 3,000 tri-colored Light-Emitting Diodes. Oooooh, pretty lights… During the game, fans in the stands will get hunks of the old bottle, now that it’s usefulness has reached an end. They ought to put it on a flatbed and haul it the couple of miles to the World of Coke next to Centennial Olympic Park in downtown Atlanta.

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About Doug Johnson

I spent 25 years in the news business, working in print, radio and television. After a steady rise to the middle, I made the leap to the private sector, which chewed and then tried spitting me out after 2 years. I zigged (instead of zagging) into a position in television production.
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5 Responses to Dining and Duck!

  1. mainstreetjournal says:

    I would point out that decal has no legal weight. The official signage is supposedly becoming available later this week.

  2. mainstreetjournal says:

    BTW, “packing heat” and “strapped?” I can tell what industry you work in, Doug. Remember, the only folks who would be allowed to carry into restaurants are the folks who are registered with the State already and whose crime rate is *even lower* than police officers’ crime rate!

    • Doug Johnson says:

      Having registration for a firearm doesn’t necessarily denote responsible use of said weapon. Even if the majority of an establishment’s business is food, not alcohol, I’d be a more comfortable diner if I knew the only armed people in the place were on-duty police officers.

  3. mainstreetjournal says:

    My point was that these aren’t anonymous folks showing up, the crazy wild-eyed rednecks of the Commercial Appeal’s fever dreams, but people already identified and on record with the law enforcement community, people who have already demonstrated some self-control and motivation by going through the whole concealed carry permit process. People whose responsible use of firearms and general lack of criminal behavior is *better* than the police!

    But I hear ya, Doug, and respect your right to feel differently.

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