Oh, did I mention that we also went to Memphis? We were there for a couple a days and we’re seeing some themes across the board. I think you should know: Graceland sucks.
Graceland, or the land of Elvis, as you have come to know it, is over the top. If I ever hear a slightly overweight, thick, arrogant voice singing, “I’m All Shook Up” ever again, I will probably break a ninja in half and throw the ninja bits like blazing stars into the eyes of the singer until he is all shook up. Permanently. That means you, Elvis —since you’re still ‘alive’ to receive this threat. I will gladly take the chiming candor of Tom Waits any day.
Now, here’s how it goes. You show up to Graceland. It’s a dump. Seven weird fast food restaurants squat down Elvis Presley Boulevard. One example of these heinous joints is Chicken & Fish, boasting a sign that looks like a cock (not the animal). Avoid these. Marlowe’s is the only real option. Their polite drivers pick you up in a pink cadillac so you can eat pulled pork. Try it!
Anyhow, book your stay at Heartbreak Hotel for $120 bucks a night. Expect yawn inducing furniture, and NO mirrors on the ceiling in this standard room (Elvis would be so disappointed). But, here’s the good news! You get free tour tickets with your stay (saving you a whopping $68 for two adult tickets). Bring on the everything-Elvis-till-you-think-you’ll-throw-up experience: the mansion, the jet plane tour, the car showcase, and gift shop after gift shop touting Elvis sunglasses and bejeweled purses, all disguised as ‘exhibits.’ I personally was intrigued by the fashion exhibit. Did you know Elvis pioneered the unitard? Well, it was more of a jump suit really, but it prevented his pants from going up (or coming down near the fans) and his belly from hanging out from all those cheeseburgers.
Funny, the exhibits didn’t really tell the true story. You know, the one where he got addicted to Demerol, cheated multiple times on his wife and estranged his poor, untalented daughter all while singing in sweaty jumpsuits till he overdosed on the bathroom floor in August 1977? Yeah. I hate when they leave out the important bits.
I have to confess, my favourite part of the whole Elvis ordeal was the rescue horses at the mansion. Lisa Marie Presley adopted them and lets them run around the pasture (did I mention it’s a 13 acre property?). Max and Bandit came right up to me when I clucked at them (not like a chicken, but like a horse). Bandit has a blue eye. He’s the smarter one. We’re best friends now.
Do Graceland at least once. That’s all you’ll need in your lifetime unless you are a raving Elvis fan. We saw some. They were elderly ladies with jet black hair, leaking mascara, and drug induced ticks, hanging outside the gift shops for four hours.
PS- You’ll want to know….
Why Elvis Got Fat: Fried Peanut Butter Banana Sandwiches
1 ripe banana
3 drops lemon juice
2 pieces white bread
2 tbsp peanut butter
1 pinch cinnamon
1 pinch brown sugar
smattering of butter
These were Elvis’ favourite. Mash up your banana in a bowl; add cinnamon, brown sugar and lemon squeeze. Spread peanut butter onto one side of bread. Layer banana mixture over peanut butter. Lay piece of bread over top. Butter outsides of bread. Fry. Shove into your face with a glass of milk. They’re actually pretty tasty.
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