Mr. Steve Forbes
60 5th Avenue
New York, NY 10011
Dear Mr. Forbes,
On the request from my city mayor, The Honorable A.C. Wharton, I also would like to invite you to make a trip to come visit our fair city as I think that you will find that Memphis is far from being labeled a ‘miserable’ city. During the Olympics I recalled a TV commercial for the city of Vancouver that the general tag line was “you have to come see it” and I challenge you to come experience what Memphis and the Mid South has to offer. Not only as a lifelong Memphian but also as a 4th generation Italian immigrant family who has called Memphis home I could not imagine living anywhere else in the US as Memphis is my home.
The city of Memphis has great history that is anything than ‘miserable’ from the days of cotton trading on Front Street to the various sections of cities where immigrant families lived such as the pinch district and the Evergreen district. It was here that these good families led to the start companies called Piggly Wiggly, Holiday Inn, Ronco Pasta, and even a little package freight company called Federal Express.
I know that Mayor Wharton mentioned in his letter the various events that he visited in our city and some great upcoming grand openings that we are excited for but those just scratch the surface. Memphis does have a great history of great food, music and sporting teams but I have another reason that you need to come visit my city. In my opinion a city is nothing without its people and here is where I believe you may want to re-consider Memphis being ‘miserable’.
Last month the weather in Memphis got the unseasonably Arctic cold blast that prompted the mayor and government officials to instruct our utilities companies to re-connect utilities to any home that was cut off due to non-payment regardless of what they owed the utility company. Mr. Forbes I encourage you to go visit with those who got their utilities turned back on during this time of crisis and see what they have to think of our ‘miserable’ city.
Please by all means go by the Ronald McDonald House, Target House and St. Jude and visit with families who have been uprooted from across the world or across the country while their child seeks medical treatment and ask them what they think of the people of Memphis and the wonderful staffs at these institutions.
During the aforementioned cold snap it was a priority to get our homeless out of the elements and even some ‘warming tents’ were erected to aide them. Again ask them if they thought the people who were helping them if they were living in a ‘miserable’ city.
The next person that I would like for you to meet is Ms Suhair Lauck who happens to own “The Little Tea Shop” restaurant downtown and I encourage you to debate that question of Memphis being a ‘miserable’ city. Heck I tell you what I will even buy your lunch if you can convince this wonderful woman that she lives in a miserable city because I think you may be mistaken and will lose the debate. Oh and while you are there you have to try the cornbread sticks with your lunch to see if you have had any better. I doubt it!
Lastly I would love for you to come to Memphis, visit various parts of our city and just simply walk up to a complete stranger and ask them what they think of our city because I think that you would be amazed that your report listing Memphis as a ‘miserable’ city may be wrong.
So I encourage you to come see the Peabody ducks, go visit the Jungle Room, eat some ribs, walk down Beale Street but while you are seeing the sites please ask around on what Memphians think of our fair city, I think you will be amazed.
That guy who calls himself Carbunkle Trumpet on his blog