Friday, June 15, 2007

Friday Morning Update

Alright, I haven't taken the time to write an update about myself in a while, so here it goes...

Yesterday was one of the longer social days I've had in a while. In fact, I may stay home tonight just to recharge.

The day started off normally with work in the morning. By lunch however, everything changed. My work had a suite reserved for us at the Redbirds game. It was nice to walk down and watch a baseball game in the middle of the day. The best part was the food-- they had tasty snacks for us.

I left the game at the beginning of the 8th inning. My attention span is just only so long and I knew that I had a long day ahead of me, so I went back to the office. When I got back, I had an exciting idea that I started to pursue... and got so involved that I almost ended up missing my next activity.

After an hour, I headed down to the Residence Inn by Marriott that's located in Downtown Memphis. They had a rooftop party set up for us-- and more snacks! I adore that hotel; it's where I stayed when I moved back to Memphis in September. I think it used to be apartments or something because each unit has such a unique feel. I like Residence Inns normally anyway, but this one is better. And, they have free food and drinks... :-)

It was incredibly HOT yesterday afternoon, especially on the roof of a building, next to a grill and in the sun. I headed home to shower and prepare for the next leg of my evening. I switched into a new dress I recently found and headed up to my rooftop to visit my neighbors before heading on.

I went down to the Memphis Arts Council reception at the new Westin hotel. I could see by the reaction of the staff that they're starting to recognize me. Ha! (I may be back tonight, but as I said... we'll see how I'm feeling.) Anyway, the Memphis Arts Council event was fabulous! I met a few new people, reconnected with old ones, and enjoyed more food and drinks. :-)
While I was at the Arts Council event, one woman stopped me to ask where I'd found my dress. I told her that I found it online. She wanted the name of the website. I actually don't even remember where it came from. I found it on one site and compared prices and bought it from the place where I could get the best deal. She thought I was lying and started to promise not to get the same dress if I'd just tell her. Wow... Anyway, here's a photo of the dress on a model from the site--

After this wrapped up, I headed over to the Peabody rooftop to check out Kevin and Bethany Paige. I met up with friends and had a great time!

Next, I headed over to Flying Fish to say hello to the friends mentioned earlier from my rooftop. They were eating french fries with hot sauce... surprise! :-)

Made a quick run through EP's Delta Kitchen and and ended up at Flying Saucer with two of my girl friends. It was a fun time. Someone high fived me for my dress, so I suppose the night worked out alright.

On the way back home, I stopped by Earnestine & Hazel's to pick up my neighbor and his date and drove us back.

And here were are at Friday... :-)

[Thanks Paul for your two recent posts highlighting a few things from my site.]

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Projectionist Pans Movie, Loses Job

Wow, what an interesting past few days it's been. A friend here in Memphis, Jessie Morrison, has been fired this week from his job. Why? Because while working as a projectionist at Malco, he wrote a negative review of a movie online.

What difference does that make you may ask? Well, he wrote it about the upcoming Fantastic Four movie. What happened next is a little surprising...

Fox figured out that he wrote the entry and where he works. Fox then phoned his boss and threatened to pull their movie from Malco's entire chain of theatres.

Just after, he was fired.

It's all a little sad. The reviewer loves movies and had been writing online reviews for quite some time-- and his company new in advance that he was doing this. In addition, he didn't reveal any movie "spoilers" in his review. He simply stated his opinion.

Anyway, the whole thing is burning up the Internet today. All you have to do is search for "Memflix" on Google and you'll now find over 35,000 entries.

Here's the latest from

LOS ANGELES, California (Hollywood Reporter) -- A projectionist at a Memphis, Tennessee, theater chain has lost his job after writing an unauthorized early review of "Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer" for the Web site Ain't It Cool News.

Jesse Morrison, the projectionist, claims that the film's distributor, 20th Century Fox, was behind the decision by Malco Theatres Inc. to suspend him for an undetermined period. The studio denied the charge.

While studios and filmmakers have endured early reviews of their movies, both negative and positive, on Web sites since the early days of the Internet, the incident might mark the first time someone working in the entertainment industry has lost a job for voicing an early opinion online.

On Saturday, posted a negative review by Morrison (writing under his online moniker Memflix) under the headline "Memflix crushes all hope for 'Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer.' "

A 29-year-old film, video and journalism major at the University of Memphis, Morrison worked for $7 an hour at the Ridgeway Four, next door to Malco's home office. He picked up further compensation by readying movie prints for exhibitor and press screenings, which allowed him during the past year to write reviews of such movies as "Disturbia," "Vacancy" and "Spider-Man 3" for Ain't It Cool. He also wrote reviews for Malco's movie blog and a circular distributed at the theater.

On Monday, two days after his "Silver Surfer" pan appeared, Morrison was called into a meeting with Malco senior VP Jimmy Tashie and, according to Morrison, was "suspended until further notice," with the suggestion that he would not be asked to return.

Morrison said Tashie pointed out that "20th Century Fox called them that morning and threatened to take away the press and trade screenings because of this whole thing. They were upset."

Asked if Fox had any role in the suspension, Tashie said: "Absolutely none." The executive said his company received a call from Fox that said "there's somebody there working for (Malco) who is writing reviews in advance. That's all they said. No one asked us to do anything. We have been in business 95 years, and this is the first time anything like this happened. And this boy knew what he was doing was the wrong thing. ... He was in a position of trust and he violated that trust."

Drew McWeeney, known as "Moriarty" on the Ain't It Cool site, picked up Morrison's cause. Amid two positive reviews for the new movie, he championed Morrison's right to free speech and wrote: "He's written many reviews for us before, but when he wrote one for 'Fantastic Four,' Fox went into hypersensitive overdrive. They tracked him down and had him fired, threatening to pull their business from the entire chain over that review."

Sources inside Fox denied the studio's involvement, saying that the disciplinary action was beyond their reach and was the theater chain's decision.

Some entertainment companies, including film productions, do ask workers to sign confidentiality agreements, agreeing not to disclose information. Morrison said he had never been asked to sign such an agreement, though he would have if asked.

"If they had sat me down and told me that this has caused such a stink and that we would like you to sign some waiver, I probably would have signed it," Morrison said. "In my opinion, they used strong-arm tactics. I don't regret going on my Web site or Ain't It Cool at all. I just wish it hadn't come to this, but I don't really believe I did anything wrong."

Tashie said: "In the future, anybody in that position will sign something."

A number of Ain't It Cool readers have rallied to Morrison's cause, some even offering him jobs like a cameraman gig in Mexico.

Morrison said he is weighing his options. "I'm hoping to get a job as a professional movie reviewer, but I don't know what's going to happen with that. I guess you could say I'm at some kind of crossroads right now."

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Net Impact Rockstar Conference Registration Now Open!

November 1st to 3rd, 2007, Nashville, Tennessee

Join us in Nashville!

Rockstar Registration is now open for the 2007 Net Impact Conference, taking place November 1-3 in Nashville. Register before June 15th to receive $100 off the regular registration price!

What will you do next to make our world more sustainable? This November, more than 1,500 graduate business students and professionals will come up with an answer. The 2007 Net Impact Conference will challenge attendees to think deeply about current issues and trends in the business world, while engaging them to take an action-oriented plan for change back to their communities.

Comprised of keynote speakers, panel discussions, networking opportunities, case competitions, debates, and much more, the 2007 curriculum will feature cutting-edge business leaders from around the world speaking on the following themes:

  • Corporate Impact
  • Leadership & Career
  • The Social Sector
  • Business and the Environment
  • The Business of Health
  • International Development

Attendees will also have the opportunity to pursue their career aspirations by networking with over 60 of the top for and nonprofit companies at the 2007 Net Impact Career Expo

Thursday, June 07, 2007