It’s August. Hard to believe, I know, but that’s what the calendar and the thermometer say. August used to be really, really significant to me because on the first day of August high school football coaches all over the state would start issuing equipment and go to work trying to build a championship football team, and for many, many years, I was a part of that fraternity.
All aboard! I’ve always been partial to trains.
The man wanted to know about muscle cars, but he was asking the wrong person. I have never been a car guy. During the age of the muscle car my daddy was driving an 8-year-old Buick and I was riding my thumb — or my feet — and all I knew about cars and engines was that I didn’t know anything about either.
I’m not sure where I live anymore. When I moved to Conyers, 33 years ago, I teased my lovely bride, Lisa, that we were moving to “the country,” from the thriving metropolis of Covington.
What a magnificent week I have spent, away from cell phones and the Internet — for the most part — and away from the noise of Fox News and CNN and the SEC Network.
Raleigh Sims was one of those people who would have been featured in Reader’s Digest, back in the day, because he was certainly an unforgettable character.
America has lost her way. So says my friend Kevin “Chappy” Hynes, and I agree with him wholeheartedly.
Last fall I had the opportunity to hear the great T. Graham Brown at the Athens Classic Center, thanks to the generosity of an old friend who had front row seats. I have always enjoyed T. Graham Brown, even back when he was known as Tony and was playing with Dirk in Athens hotel lounges.
Hot enough for you? Yeah, me, too. And it is the heat as well as the humidity. This has been one of those weeks where I would gladly kneel down and kiss the ring of the guy who invented air conditioning, even if he did move Southerners off the front porch and do away with a lot of the storytelling for which the region has long been noted.
Some of us count time by the annual gatherings, speaking now of Salem Camp Meeting, which has been taking place annually near the spring on Salem Road in Newton County since 1826, except for two years during the recent unpleasantness between the North and South.
As I spent about 10 minutes figuring our how to safely load Henley into his state-of-the-art car safety seat something dawned on me. I wondered how any of my generation ever survived childhood without the proper safety equipment.
To some the battle flag is a symbol of racism because it has been hijacked by groups of hateful people and used as a symbol. But to many more people it is a symbol of regional pride and being a good old boy.
So we are celebrating Independence Day this weekend in the North Georgia Piedmont, and for the first time in a long time we can celebrate with legal aerial fireworks. Emergency rooms all across the state will be ramping up for the burned fingers and cinder-filled eyes, and a good time will be had by all.
What a week I chose to tune out the news. I got a recap over the weekend and to tell you the truth, I liked the Supremes a whole lot better when Diana Ross was in charge rather than John Roberts.
I have looked forward to this occasion for 26 years, ever since I looked down at that screaming little red-faced bundle of joy and named him Jackson Lee Huckaby, and I have prayed that he would find a wife that was as kind and loving and God-fearing as he has become.
They call Charleston the Holy City, because of all the churches. Last week evil visited the Holy City, intent on destroying the holiness and casting the city, and the region, into flame. Evil was painfully destructive and caused much grief and anguish, but evil failed because the good people of Charleston were bigger than the misguided and hate-filled young man who perpetrated the awful massacre at the Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church.
I have reached a conclusion, y’all. I hate to admit it. You don’t understand how badly I hate to admit it. Perhaps the worst part of admitting that I have reached this conclusion is that it proves that my lovely wife Lisa is right, and has been right for a long time — and I have been wrong.
It’s hard to have lived as long as I have and done the things I’ve done and still find new experiences — at least those that I am physically able and morally willing to experience. But I found something new to do this week. I attended my first ever North Georgia (UMC) Annual Conference.
My friend invited me to a concert at one of those funky venues in Little Five Points. If you haven’t visited Little Five recently, think 10th Street in the late 1960s. All that’s missing is the Great Speckled Bird.
Sunday, June 14, is Flag Day. Old Glory. The Red, White and Blue. The Star Spangled Banner. The day set aside by Woodrow Wilson to commemorate the adoption of our flag by the Continental Congress in 1777. I bet there aren’t a dozen people in the area who knew that. Now there are a whole bunch of us that do.
here is an old conundrum, “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear, does it still make a sound?” I have a better one. “If I do something and my lovely wife, Lisa, is not at home to tell me, am I still wrong?” I’m betting that the answer to the second question is the same as the answer to the first.
For years I have heard people criticize the local newspaper — this newspaper — which doesn’t upset me because it goes with the territory. All newspapers are criticized on a daily basis and probably have been since cave men chiseled pictures of his fellow Neanderthals hunting wooly mammoths.
For the first 62 years of my life I read about the invasion of Europe — an event that seemed like ancient history, although it occurred a scant eight years before I and the rest of the Baby Boomer Class of 1952 were born — give or take a Leo here and a Pisces there.
It is amazing that there are any problems left in the world because my friend Dave and I meet every Wednesday morning to solve them at our local Waffle House.
The great state of Maine, which has never been a bastion of conservatism, has decided that people who receive food stamps and otherwise live off the public dole in that state, will henceforth have to actually do something to qualify for a monthly handout.
This weekend marks an anniversary, of sorts, for my lovely wife Lisa and me. This weekend marks the second anniversary of our initial excursion into the travel industry. It never was a career goal — honest.
While I wasn’t playing real close attention Yogi Berra turned 90 last week. Where did my childhood go?
I never like it when news commentators — or man-on-the-street witnesses — describe accident scenes or natural disasters as “looking like a war zone” unless they have, in fact, been in a war zone. I haven’t.
Graduation has always been a special season for me and I have been to hundreds. Many involved my own children. Many involved students I had taught and nurtured over the year, students that I truly hated to see go.
I could live in Portland, Ore. I couldn’t live in many places without grits or sweet iced tea or Republicans, but I could live in Portland.
Three years ago, give or take a prayer here and an injection there, my lovely wife, Dr. Lisa, and I sat nervously in an examination room in a Houston, Texas, clinic waiting to see Dr. Lance Pagliaro.
Yes, friends, it’s May, which means school is almost out and it is time for my thoughts to drift back to those endless and idyllic days of my childhood summers, in Porterdale.
I have spent most the week down on the Georgia coast, enjoying local seafood and dispelling myths about the founding of Georgia.
I was having a chat with a Porterdale police officer Sunday evening — no, I hadn’t been pulled over — and was showing her where all the businesses had been “back in the day.”
I asked my friends on Facebook to tell me the most fun they had ever had without breaking the law or taking off their clothes and discovered many of them have lived really exciting lives.
I have seldom been as moved at such a function as I was last Wednesday evening when I had the high honor of keynoting the 24th annual banquet to recognize the heroes of the Northeast Georgia District 10 Emergency Medical Service. When I say heroes, I mean heroes.
I went to bed Monday night with a heavy heart. Baltimore was on fire, black neighborhoods being destroyed, black businesses being looted, black police officers being attacked, by predominantly black mobs supposedly protesting decades of inequality and mistreatment at the hand of “police officers, politicians, and the system.”
There are toys all over my living room floor — in the corners, under the desk and right smack dab in the middle of the floor, on a direct path between me and the remote control. We are talking about large, elaborate, die cut compilations of plastic in bright primary colors.
I heard about it first on Facebook, speaking now of the horrifically tragic accident that occurred on Interstate 16 between Statesboro and Savannah Wednesday morning.
What is the world coming to? I can’t imagine how things can get much stranger or people more ornery.
I am happy to report that we had a safe visit to Ephesus and Istanbul and are, or will be, by the time you read this, safely on American shores.
I never visited big cities when I was growing up in Porterdale — unless you count Macon. I don’t.
I am bad to procrastinate. Always have been. When I was in the eleventh grade I missed a chance to see Pistol Pete Maravich play because I had put off doing a project for Mrs. Meyer’s world history class until the last minute and had to stay home and make a poster about the Middle Ages.
I always enjoy meeting folks who read my columns—even the people who complain about my views. What is it they say about no such thing as bad publicity? At least they are reading what I write.
March really was mad, wasn’t it? And the madness carried over into April. Can you believe that they played a basketball game in a football stadium in front of 70,000 fans?
How are you going to cook your ham tomorrow?
Think the world is a big place? It is a lot smaller than you might think and I am reminded of that every day.
I have been touring the American South for the past week or so, along with 50 of my closets friends — some of whom I even knew before Shane Clayton, World’s Greatest Bus Driver, picked up our group last Thursday morning.
I was standing in the wings at the Ryman Auditorium Thursday and found myself in awe of the ghosts there. By ghosts I mean the spirits of all the magnificent country artists who had stood right there, in the same spot I occupied, waiting for their opportunity to grace that hallowed stage for the first time — or the hundredth.
Sometimes I think the world has gone slap dab crazy. Every time I think I have seen and heard it all, something new comes along.