Tommy Tomlinson

Columnist and host of SouthBound

Tommy Tomlinson has written for publications including Esquire, ESPN the Magazine, Sports Illustrated, Forbes, Garden & Gun, and many others. He spent 23 years as a reporter and local columnist for the Charlotte Observer, where he was a finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize in commentary. His stories have been chosen twice for the “Best American Sports Writing” series (2012 and 2015) and he also appears in the anthology “America’s Best Newspaper Writing.”

He teaches magazine writing at Wake Forest University and has also taught at the University of Georgia, Queens University of Charlotte and the Poynter Institute. He has been a speaker at workshops and conferences across the country.

His book “The Elephant In the Room,” a memoir about life as an overweight man in a growing America, will be published soon by Simon & Schuster.

He’s a graduate of the University of Georgia and was a 2008-09 Nieman Fellow at Harvard University.

Tommy and his wife, Alix Felsing, live in Charlotte.

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New episodes of SouthBound will be published every other week on Wednesday.

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Ways to Connect

Saturday morning, I sat on the porch with my mother-in-law and we soaked in the gorgeous spring day.

Not long ago we bought my 84-year-old mother-in-law a special clock.

Today, we look into the future. About nine weeks into the future.

We’ve been fine not going anywhere for the past few days. But now that Mecklenburg County is on a stay-at-home order, going somewhere is all we want to do.

Big moments are bound to slip by us in these frantic times. And so it is that we are just now hearing that the Rev. Darius Swann passed away back on March 8.

There are many of you who are doing your best to be productive during these Virus Days. You are learning Spanish or organizing your file cabinets or cleaning the top of the refrigerator. God bless every one of you.

In our house we’re lucky to have enough milk, enough cat food and enough toilet paper. What we are running out of is energy.

Right now, the most important currency we have – more than money, for a lot of us – is information.

My wife and I needed to get out of the house for a while. So while her mother napped, we went for a drive.

One of the many, many strange things about Virus Time is that it’s happening just as spring comes to town.

There's a reason you don't see Hanna Raskin’s face in this photo – she tries to keep it hidden for her job.

It feels like someone picked up the remote control of the universe and hit fast-forward. Too many things are happening all at once. That’s what the coronavirus is doing to us. We’re all testing positive for anxiety.

It’s amazing how reassured you can feel from something as simple as a slip of paper.

JEN ROSENSTEIN

There was a young woman named Emily Feimster from a small town in North Carolina. She was an athlete in high school and college, presented as a debutante, graduated summa cum laude, had the whole world in front of her. But she didn’t know what she wanted to be. And more than that, she didn’t know who she really was.

You can argue about how Greg Lindberg ended up in a room with North Carolina insurance commissioner Mike Causey, talking about a bribe.

But you can’t argue about what Lindberg said, because the conversation was being recorded.

First of all, let’s acknowledge that South Carolina does the presidential primary right.

Self-portrait by Burk Uzzle

You might not have heard the name Burk Uzzle – if you did, you’d remember it. But it’s likely that you’ve seen his work.

“Duty is the sublimest word in the English language.”

So it turns out that the shameful and embarrassing things Wells Fargo did for years, as a matter of practice, turn out to be even more embarrassing and shameful than we thought.

Photo courtesy of Brooklyn Decker

Today's episode is a replay of our conversation with Brooklyn Decker from October 2018. Decker grew up outside of Charlotte, where SouthBound is based, and was discovered at a mall by a talent scout for a modeling agency. When we talked, she was back in town to see family.

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