Offbeat happenings in Tennessee
Posted: Wednesday, December 31, 2008 9:43 pm
By JOE EDWARDS
Associated Press Writer
NASHVILLE (AP) — Last spring, state workers put up a sign in East Tennessee identifying the Nolichucky River watershed. One problem: The site was the Watauga River watershed.
Not all the news from Tennessee was serious this year, and moments of the offbeat helped to lighten 2008.
Here are some of them.
Tennessee House Speaker Jim-my Naifeh, commenting on grade requirements for students to keep their lottery scholarships:
“I got a 4.0 one time, but it took me two semesters.”
Bobo, who insults people and goads them to throw baseballs and soak him at a dunking machine at the Tennessee State Fair in Nashville, yelled this at a young guy and his date:
“Hey dude! Bring your cousin over here.”
In May, a Brownsville woman hoping to get her driver’s license reinstated accidentally backed her car into a Jackson driver’s license station. Sheree Covington tried to move her car before the driving test and plowed into the front entrance.
She did not get her driving privileges back.
Dolly Parton told The New York Post in July that she has no interest in entering politics.
“We’ve got enough boobs in the White House,” she said.
Two robbery suspects picked the wrong place to flee to last January in Nashville.
They were taken into custody on the grounds of the Police Training Academy.
In McMinnville, police in May said they arrested a man who misdialed and ordered marijuana from a sheriff’s deputy.
Investigators said deputy Jason Rowland answered his cell phone and someone asked if he had any “smoke.” Rowland played along and the caller ordered $40 worth of marijuana.
The buyer showed up and police charged him with solicitation of drug sales.
ESPN’s “GameDay” show originated Oct. 4 on the Vanderbilt campus in Nashville, where a sign in the crowd poked fun at the size of the head coach of Vandy rival Tennessee:
“Phil Fulmer ate my other sign.”
As the Vanderbilt football team got off to a 5-0 start, this banner was hung outside a dental office near campus:
“Go Vandy!!! We’re pulling for ya!”
On Nov. 18, shortly after the release of the James Bond movie “Quantum of Solace,” the winning evening Cash 3 number in the Tennessee lottery was 007.
Mad at your cable TV company? John Weatherly of Nashville was in court in June, accused of kidnapping a cable TV technician during a service call. Police said Weatherly was unhappy with the service, and deadbolted his door and detained the technician.
In July, Matt Lincoln sued Lakewind Church in Knoxville for $2.5 million, claiming he was so consumed by the spirit of God that he fell and hit his head at the church.
The Sevier County man said he was asking God to have “a real experience” while praying.
Lincoln said he has fallen before from the force of the spirit but has always been caught by someone.
Police in Cookeville said three men who stole a recliner chair from a Goodwill store in July didn’t get very far.
Officers said they arrived and found the three had run out of gas in the parking lot.
In January, Nashville police charged a woman with aggravated assault for shooting another woman.
Police said Nikeya Alston was unhappy with the way Tiffany Jackson’s roommate braided her hair. Jackson was shot in the leg in an argument that followed.
State Rep. Mike Turner of Old Hickory was discussing his fire safety bill at a Legislative Plaza hearing room in February.
You guessed it: A fire alarm went off. Smoke from a cafeteria grill was blamed.
Turner called it “an endorsement from upstairs.”
Song title of the year:
“She Left Me for Jesus” by Hayes Carll.
That wasn’t leaves clogging a drain pipe in Putnam County last June.
Turned out to be an alligator, at least 2 feet long.
Authorities believe someone had the gator for a pet, then turned it loose.
Vanderbilt University, “the Harvard of the South,” had to delay the start of preseason football practice by one day.
Someone at the school miscalculated how many days before the season opener that the school could begin practice under NCAA regulations.
Two coeds at Middle Tennessee State University got into a fight on campus in late August.
The problem? They argued over a parking spot.
In October, former Vice President Al Gore returned to Florida to campaign for Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama. It was the state that dashed his White House dreams eight years earlier after a 36-day recount.
He greeted a rally in West Palm Beach by saying, “So, where were we?”
Published in The Messenger 12.31.08