Tuesday, April 29, 2008

They're Tearing It Down...

A personal side trip, if I may...

On June 16th, 2008 they will begin demolition of Fairmount Elementary School here in Bristol, TN. The school will be replaced by a much larger, more modern building which will swallow the contents of two older schools in the city.

A little history:

Fairmount Elementary School is located on a beautiful tree-studded campus on Cypress Street. This location once served as a campground for Native Americans traveling to the salt wells in what is now known as Saltville, Virginia. Later, this land provided camping for covered wagons that brought produce to the area from Shady Valley and Johnson City, Tennessee. As the community began to develop after the Civil War, in what was called the dense Fairmount Forest Park, the site of the present-day campus, a grand resort was planned. The elaborate Victorian Hotel Fairmount was constructed, and Fairmount Lake was developed for recreation. An elite residential section was planned around the famous hotel's grounds. By the turn of the century, the grand hotel had been destroyed by fire. Once again, the forest served as a short-term encampment site for the U. S. Army during World War I.

The original Fairmount School began serving this still elite and growing community in 1905. The first building was located on Kentucky Avenue, one block west of the present location. In 1925-1926, the present building was constructed on 8.83 acres, serving grades one through eight. In 1939, the gates were added at the front of the school with the sign honoring the name of the school and motto, "Character Above Intellect," adorning it. The original sign was replaced in 1991 with a colorful sandblasted design. The motto remains as a guiding principle of the school community. Three additions have been made to the building consisting of four classrooms in 1950, two classrooms and new gymnasium in 1960, and two classrooms in 1966. The entire "old" section of the school was renovated in 1972. The present building encompasses 62,984 square feet.

It is with mixed emotions that I consider the replacement of this grand old marker of many memories from my neighborhood of birth. On one hand, it has been far too long since Bristol proper has been bestowed with any new schools. On the other, this is where I attended elementary school, as did my siblings. My favorite uncle was once a teacher in the hallowed halls of Fairmount.

It is situated on a beautiful, wooded lot with many trees that share the aged wisdom of time gone by.

I have been trying to review my memories from those days but, alas, it was such a long time ago now. I have to admit that many of memories of my school days are blocked because, in many ways, my school days were not of a pleasant experience. I'll just leave it at that.

I was in this building when the word arrived to the world that John F. Kennedy had died from his wounds. We were sent home that day.

It was here that I discovered my dog "Pepper" and coaxed her to follow me home to become a member of our family for 16 years.

It was here that my neighbor, who had a somewhat wild reputation in those days, presented me with what turned out to be a "booby trap" in the bathroom one day. A booby trap was basically a firecracker that has a string coming out of both ends, when you pull them, BOOM ! I was very young and did not know that, so... well you can probably guess ahead from here. I wound up in after school detention for the first time in my life.

It was here, in the auditorium, that for no apparent reason that I can recall, the guy sitting next to me, who shall remain nameless, suddenly stabbed me in the leg twice with a pencil. To this very day I can show you the lead as it still remains.

It was here, in my final year, that they decided to no longer have graduation ceremonies which, they resumed in the next year that followed.

I remember the vaccinations doled out in sugar cube format.

I remember Mr. Wizard who would present his cool science show in the gym.

All these memories came back to me as I walked around the old school, inside and out, after a pre-bid conference the other day. Our company hopes to earn the right to supply equipment for the new cafeteria.

I learned at the meeting that they will preserve some of the trees in the front, which is wonderful news. They also intend to recycle the trees that must be taken, the plans are to salvage the wood and make "things" out of it, furniture or, who knows.

The P.T.A. will be selling bricks, I might just have to get in on that action.

Here's to Fairmount, a grand old building. They don't make them like that anymore.

Sunday, April 13, 2008


Warm Up Dates In Nashville
( Saturday Is Sold Out !!! )
This version of The Crim not only features the
but also...
( Two of the finest drummers on the planet )

Download Audio
King Crimson - Aug. 06, 2008
Chicago, Illinois
Park West
King Crimson - Aug. 07, 2008
Chicago, Illinois
Park West
King Crimson - Aug. 08, 2008
Chicago, Illinois
Park West
King Crimson - Aug. 11, 2008
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Keswick Theatre
King Crimson - Aug. 12, 2008
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Keswick Theatre
King Crimson - Aug. 14, 2008
New York, New York
Nokia Theatre
King Crimson - Aug. 15, 2008
New York, New York
Nokia Theatre
King Crimson - Aug. 16, 2008
New York, New York
Nokia Theatre

Adrian Belew Power Trio On Tour 2008

Adrian, Julie, and Eric are currently on tour!
Don't miss the 2008 Adrian Belew Power Trio Tour.

Mercy Lounge
Nashville, TN NEW!
Smith's Olde Bar
Atlanta, GA NEW!
Skippers Smokehouse
Tampa, FL NEW!
Bamboo Room
Lake Worth, FL NEW!
Cat's Cradle
Carrboro, NC NEW!
Rams Head Tavern
Annapolis, MD
Mexicali Blues
Teaneck, NJ NEW!
Revolution Hall
Troy, NJ NEW!
Watch for more new dates at:

BUSH In '96

No, not *THAT* Bush...

Dancin' Dave has posted a fine story on his blog that will explain:

BUSH '96

Despite the scary coinciDANCE in monikers, we've been trying to
get good rhythm in The White House for a while now.