Even though it was an unlucky day, the Downtown Progressive Dinner Club (I just made up that name) was undeterred earlier this month. It was time to have a progressive dinner. We had a couple of targets we were trying to lure into staying in downtown permanently. And, by cracky, we were going to have the dinner.
So, of course, we decided to embrace the fact it was Friday the 13th and make that the theme of our entire evening!
A little information about Friday the 13th. Apparently for quite some time (nobody can say for sure), it has been considered an unlucky day. It seems to be a combination of the belief that Fridays are unlucky days of the week and the number 13 is unlucky. Although many cultures and religions seem to have some squeamishness about Fridays and the number 13, in the Christian tradition, Friday is viewed with disdain because that was the day Christ was crucified. And 13? Well, there were 13 people at the Last Supper. Folklore has it that it is extremely bad luck to have 13 people at a dinner party. It is said that, if you do, one of those people will soon die. As Judas Iscariot did.
So, fortunately, although we decided to have a Friday the 13th progressive dinner, we only had 11 diners. Whew! Just saying.
As many readers of The Blue Streak know, a group of us downtown dwellers has made it a goal to get everyone we know (that we like) to move downtown. We attempt to accomplish this by inviting certain “targets” to join us on a progressive dinner, where we have a different course at each of several (usually three) downtown residences.
This month, our targets were a great couple named Robin Thomas and Chris Crouch. They are business consultants and have recently moved into a rental unit in The Elliott on Church Avenue. They are one of those great stories of a couple who wanted to find a new place to live (they came from Germantown, Tennessee) and repeatedly Googled “best cities to live” to find a list of finalists.
Chris said last summer he and Robin were in Knoxville on business when a colleague brought them to Gay Street. “This feels good,” Robin noted. They decided to call Kimberly Dixon Hamilton, a downtown Realtor, and explore further. “We were sitting at the Tomato Head drinking a beer and watching people,” Chris said. “We noticed that we couldn’t really detect a demographic — it was everybody!”
They went back to Germantown and discussed the options. “We had considered downtown Memphis and downtown Nashville,” Chris said. “But we couldn’t find any place that felt like a neighborhood. Downtown Knoxville is like a little section of New York City — you rarely wander more than a few blocks. I started measuring things in steps!”
So, after 15 years in Germantown in a gated community, the couple have downsized from 5,000 square feet to 1,500 square feet. “The big house and all that was not serving us well anymore,” Chris noted. “Downtown Knoxville is helping us joyfully enjoy life.”
Isn’t that a great story? The couple is just temporarily in their space in The Elliott. Now, they are looking for something more long term. Please post a comment if you have an idea for them on a possible amazing place. Or any other thoughts about downtown living.
I guess you can figure out where those blue tongues at the top of this post came from!
Next stop was at Cherokee Lofts where Alan and I live. I had decided to make black cat cookies as one part of our dessert. Guess how you make black icing? Get fudge icing and add blue food coloring to it. Who knew? (Answer: Pinterest did.)