Oh, That Buddy Houts - And Response

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

To Jim Ashley:

I loved reading about Buddy Houts. I worked at the Free Press for seven years from 1974-81 (only barely overlapping  your arrival)  in what was originally known as the Society Department. Then it became Features, but it was still all women.  Buddy came in our big room to see us often.  One day he had on a beautiful new suit, which his mother, an accomplished seamstress, had made.  We oohed and aahed over it, but Buddy said, “I will never have her make me another suit with two pairs of trousers.”   Why, we asked Buddy?  “Too hot,” he replied.

Still, another time was on a hot summer day when one of our staff had sent up a filler to be used when there was a little spot left over on a page.  We got these off the wire service but had to put a title or headline on each story.  The one she had sent up to the composing room was about taking care of your dogs while it was so hot – provide water, shade, etc.  Her headline was, “Watch Dogs in Heat.”  Buddy came in our room with a big grin on his face, holding up that page with the headline circled in red. “Well,” he said, “I guess if you’ve got nothing else to do.”

When it snowed, Mr. Roy, whose first priority was getting the paper out every day, came into our area and announced that he had reserved rooms at the Read House for any of us who wanted to stay there and not try to drive home and back.  Buddy, standing behind Mr. McDonald to see what was going on, said he believed he would go down to the Read House with us.  “That could be dangerous, Buddy,” Mr. Roy laughed.  “Well, if it kills them, it kills them,” Buddy answered.

 That was Buddy Houts.  Such fun.  Thanks for the memories, Jim.

Margaret Kelley

* * *

I have a Buddy Houts story for you. Back around1975, on a snowy winter day, Buddy decided to test -drive a Peterbilt Truck...those long-haul machines that have a gazillion gears. He invited me to join him.

I think we went east on East Eleventh Street and then got onto McCallie Avenue. At some point, he stopped and asked me if I wanted to drive. Well, of course.

Somehow,  I got us onto M.L King Boulevard headed for Riverfront Parkway. We stopped at the Chattanooga Housing Authority, where my husband Mark Rudisill worked. I started tooting the horn until people started coming outside to see what the ruckus was all about. When they recognized me, they went and got Mark. He about died when he saw me in the driver's seat. What a hoot.

Betsy Bramlett


Thomas Gage, Not Cage

Re:  Roy Exum: Why The British Attacked   Dear Roy,  I think you'll find it was Thomas Gage, not "Cage" - a fact I learned at Sunnyside School. Thomas Cage is a company that sells avian supplies.  Lonnie Hatmaker (click for more)

Roy Exum: Would Mr. Summers’ Clients…

It was a beautiful day at Orange Grove Friday as the nationally-famed center, which cares for over 1,000 intellectually disabled children of all ages, celebrated its annual “Lunch of Champions” with a packed house in the Bucky Williams Gymnasium. Jerry Summers, who insiders know has done more for Orange Grove than any other man alive, not only emceed the event as he does every year, ... (click for more)

State Attorney General Says City Council Cannot Make Taxis Not Registered In Hamilton County Go Through Emissions Testing

The state attorney general's office has ruled that the City Council cannot require that taxis not registered in Hamilton County go through emissions testing. The city is dealing with the new Uber taxi service that has an out-of-town owner. Locally-owned cabs have to go through the annual emissions testing. The opinion says that local taxi owners cannot get around the emissions ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Area Bracing For Possibility Of Isolated Severe Storms, Tornadoes Not Ruled Out

The National Weather Service is feeling uncertain about today's weather pattern and has not ruled out the possibility of isolated, severe thunderstorms or an isolated tornado in our area. The greatest threat seems to be between 4 and 7 p.m. this evening. Below is the latest update: HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK...UPDATED NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MORRISTOWN TN 127 PM EDT SAT ... (click for more)

Orange (Defense) Rallies To Beat White (Offense), 54-44

KNOXVILLE, Tenn.  –  The White-clad offense put on a show in Tennessee’s spring football game on Saturday afternoon, but it was the Orange-shirted defense that took home the victory, 54-44, in front of an announced crowd of 63,016 at Neyland Stadium. Coach Butch Jones was impressed with the Vols' collective performance on Saturday compared to two years ago. ... (click for more)

Siblings Shine For East Hamilton Tennis

For East Hamilton tennis, it’s the new millennium’s version of the late 1970s TV sitcom “Eight is Enough” or the movie “Yours, Mine and Ours”. Three sets of siblings are represented on coach Michael Jackson’s teams from 1-7 in singles and all played and won  Friday  in district matches with Bradley Central. With no seniors on either team and both squads looking ... (click for more)