Jul 302014

The way I end up back at Madison Square Mall is that I start wondering how much worse it’s gotten since my last check-in. Then, I start thinking about how easy it would be to get some steps there, and a month or so after my initial wondering, I rip the Band-Aid off and show back up.

The vacancy count has climbed to 57, which puts Madison Square closer to half-empty than a third empty. There were another five or six places that looked occupied, but were closed. GNC was one of these, as was a dress shop bizarrely closed Monday through Wednesday. I doubt that’s allowed in the lease agreement, but it’s not like Madison Square has any weight to throw around. The same four food court eateries are hanging tough.

I’ve previously dismissed comparisons to The Mall as ridiculous. They are no longer so. Sparseness is yielding to unambiguous desolation. There is so little activity now that at times, you feel like you have it to yourself.

CBL, please chime in just anytime with your plans for this property, which is so full of good memories for so many of us. Whether you’re going to redevelop or sell, be about it. This painfully slow descent is absurd.


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There are now several occurrences of four or more vacancies in a row. This is approaching where the Castner Knott men’s store was on the upper level.


Looks about right.


Old Huntsville people, that’s where Coffee Tea & Thee was to my immediate right. The old Disney store location is over my right shoulder. There is nothing from this location all the way around the end by the escalators to this same spot on the other side. It’s either seven or eight vacancies in a row, depending on how you count them.


 Posted by at 2:57 pm
Jul 252014

Part of my automotive education was reading my dad’s Cars & Parts and Hemmings Motor News in bed before I went to sleep.

Both periodicals had a lot of classic American car content, which was why my dad took them. But there were exotics in there too, and that’s how I came to fall in love with the Aston Martin Lagonda.


Aston Martin hand-built some version of this car from 1976 to 1990. It was hideously expensive, with hopelessly complex electronic instrumentation that broke if you looked at it funny. I thought it was the greatest thing in the world. I loved it like other kids loved the Lamborghini Countach. I only saw one in the metal once, at an auction, and it was a near-religious experience. As wild as it looks in photos, it’s just totally ridiculous sitting right in front of you. It’s a study hall sketch realized. You can’t believe anyone actually built it.

Guess what? There’s a new one coming, and it looks exactly like what you’d think the classic shape brought forward to 2015 would look like.


It will be sold exclusively in the Middle East, because “that’s where the demand is.” It is likely that less than 100 will be made. It will have a 7-figure price tag.

It’s highly interesting that some of the wildest, most visceral cars these days are sedans. Makes me wish the Fisker Karma had met with a more favorable end.

 Posted by at 7:53 pm
Jul 172014

Wow, everybody was so old and fat at the Kiss/Def Leppard concert last night. I’m sure glad that hasn’t happened to me. Lea, the boys, and I traveled to Bridgestone Arena in Nashville last night to take in Kiss, Def Leppard, and Kobra and the Lotus. The boys saw Night Ranger at a festival last [...]

 Posted by at 6:08 pm

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