Sunday, August 31, 2008

Football shout-out

My second cousin, Kyle Rowe, made his debut as the starting quarterback for the winningest high school football team in the nation Friday night as Valdosta High School thumped Jenkins 48-7 in their season opener. Kyle completed 14-of-20 passes for 161 yards and four touchdowns. You can read details by clicking here.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Chew, man, chew

This just in from the Mennonite News column by Esther Yoder in my hometown newspaper, the Citizen and Georgian of Montezuma. The alarming second paragraph:

Brady Yoder got a piece of meat stuck in his throat last Friday. It wasn’t choking him, but he just couldn’t swallow anything else either to make it go on down. After several hours, they took him to the hospital in Warner Robins to have it surgically removed. The same thing had happened one other time several years ago and he had it taken care of in Warner Robins also. He is doing fine now.

You can view the entire column by clicking here.

Click here to visit the Citizen and Georgian Web site.

I think we can learn two things from this incident:
1. Brady Yoder needs to chew his meat a little better, and
2. If you ever have meat stuck in your throat, get to Warner Robins as soon as possible.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Noah where to go

In case y'all are interested, I'm building an ark. Sure, it may be merely the remnants of Tropical Storm Fay (apparently to be followed by Gustav), but I'm starting to get worried that God's in an Old Testament kind of mood ... you know where he had immediate buyer's remorse after creating humans and kept smiting them left and right.

I'm having a little trouble finding out whether these two ferrets are one of each sex, though. So, if I screw up, there may not be any ferrets reproducing when the rain stops. But, really, who needs ferrets? It's not like they're critical on the food chain or anything. Well, unless you count the Ferret on a Stick they sell at the Macon County Fair. Mmm.

And where the heck are "cubits" on this darn tape measure?!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

What's good for the goose ...

Here's a little post for the ladies. Don't forget that Saturday is "National Topless Protest Day." No, it's not a day to protest folks who go topless. It's a day to protest the inequity that allows men to go topless, but not women. I agree. Totally unfair.

It's sponsored by the Raelian Movement, a bunch of religious nuts who claimed to have cloned a human a few years ago. As if we need more humans. You can learn more about the religion by clicking here. Rael, the leader of the movement, gets messages from God when he goes riding on spaceships, by the way. (Ooops, upon further review, the messages don't come from God but the four-foot tall human-like outer space creatures who created Earth and people and asked Rael to open an embassy on this planet.) I AM NOT MAKING THIS UP. These people are serious. Though, I doubt their claim of having cloned a human being because I don't think Rael could clone a piece of paper with a Xerox machine. Seriously, visit the site. Each of man's religions contains its own bit of silliness, but these folks go above and beyond ... literally.

But back to the important point here: boobs. The Raelians do have a point. If men can do it, especially men like the one pictured here, then why can't women? Beats me. So, I figure the least I can do is help them spread their message.

"The 21st century is high time for women to be granted the right to go topless in public, a right American men have been able to enjoy for almost a century in all 50 states," said San Diego resident Nadine Gary, a Raelian guide and one of the event's principal organizers. "To deny American women the right to go topless is not only ridiculous but unconstitutional."

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Genre buster

When Kid Rock's "All Summer Long" hit radio this year with its catchy sampling from "Werewolves of London" and "Sweet Home Alabama," I could have sworn it was a rock song. After all, it was played often on Columbus' Rock 103. But in the past few days I've heard it on Q107.3 (Top 40), Kissin 99.3 (country) and even Sunny 100 (adult contemporary ... think songs like Daniel Powter's godawful "Bad Day"). I'm sure I'll hear it on Georgia Public Radio this weekend, maybe right before "A Prairie Home Companion."

I'm all for busting labels, and I'll be danged if I ever let anyone put me in one of society's confining boxes. But I've had this song on MP3 for a while, plus I heard it at my sister Laurie's luau at least 14 times last month before I had to jump in the pool at 3 a.m. just to get away from it. But I guess that's the sign of a good song -- when they play it 'til you hate it. And I can't begrudge any success that comes to good old-fashioned white trash. Even if he's from Michigan and not the Dirty South.

Then again, the guy did get arrested for fighting outside an Atlanta Waffle House. If that ain't grounds for getting your Southern citizenship, I don't know what is.

Monday, August 18, 2008

Here comes Fay

A quick shout-out to a reader and fellow kayaker and blogger Doug Bennett, who's riding out Hurricane Fay down in Key West -- and, yes, Hurricane Fay is an actual storm and not an exotic entertainer or something down there. Doug has a blog called "This Week On The Island" that you can find by clicking here. I like his recent weather forecast: "Beautiful week followed by a small hurricane." Actually, Hurricane Fay is still Tropical Storm Fay at the moment, but I think the girl has ambition. I'm sure Doug will provide an update on the goings-on down there.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


This is getting depressing. First, it was that ancient retired guy Brett Favre returning to the NFL at the ripe old age of 38. Then I had to hear how the oldest member of the U.S. men's swimming team (32-year-old anchor leg swimmer Jason Lezak, pictured here) pretty much saved the 4x100 freestyle relay team's collective butts and Michael Phelps' chances for a record 8 gold medals at the Beijing Olympics with an unbelievable come-from-behind win on Monday. Then, today, I heard a Prince song ("I Would Die 4 U") on Boomer 95.3, the oldies radio station here.

Now that I'm 38, is this what it's come to? I'm older than 99 percent of the professional athletes and way older than the oldest member of the U.S. men's swim team. (Thank you, Dara Torres, for not making me feel too old.) And, now, they're playing the music from my high school years on the oldies station.

I hope I haven't lost my walker I got after that car wreck eight years ago. Looks like I'd better dust it off.

By the way, if you missed it Monday (Sunday night here), Jason Lezak's anchor leg swim for the gold medal to upset the favored, smack-talking French team was one of the most exciting moments in American Olympic history. You can watch it again by clicking here. If you don't get a chill, you are one cold-blooded American.

Photo of Jason Lezak from

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Lin-Yang of life

Remember that cute little girl singing and flying around on wires during the opening ceremonies for the Beijing Olympics? Me, neither. I watched the sleep-inducing ceremonies for a while and was very impressed with the precision of the performers. It was almost like they were a bunch of communists used to doing as they're told.

Anyway, cute little 9-year-old Lin Miaoke was lip-synching because the real singer, 7-year-old Yang Peiyi, was deemed a little too homely for such a ceremony. Luciano Pavarotti also lip-synched during ceremonies at the 2006 Winter Games in Turin, Italy, but at least he lip-synched to his own voice.

I'm just thankful that America never would have to endure any lip-synching controversy of its own. Thank goodness we have honest, real performers like Ashlee Simpson and Britney Spears who can deliver earnest live performances.

You can read the story about cute Lin and homely Yang by clicking here.

Xinhua News Agency photo

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Sprewell Bluff

We spent Saturday at Sprewell Bluff, a beautiful stretch of the unspoiled Flint River between Woodland and Thomaston. Well, unspoiled except for a few rednecks who insist upon throwing their cigarette butts on the ground as they do at the beach, too. America's forgiven crime.

But another crime, far worse, looms on the horizon as folks including my congressman Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R) and Rep. Nathan Deal (R) are wanting to dam up parts of the river to feed overgrown Atlanta's thirst for more water and more overgrowing. Rewarding Atlanta's mismanaged sprawl by clogging up rivers for everybody else solves Atlanta's issues as much as drilling for more oil solves America's energy problems -- in both cases, you're just feeding the monster that's about to eat you alive. It's like helping a heroin addict kick the habit by giving them more heroin.

President Carter thwarted a similar plan to dam it up in the 1970s. I'm not sure he'll be as successful this time around, although I'm sure some folks south of Atlanta will have something to say about it. Atlanta's collective butt has been kissed long enough. We can't keep rewarding mismanagement with more opportunity to mismanage. And sometimes the only "smart growth" is no growth. In fact, the only wise way to handle Atlanta's urban sprawl is to go through a period of smart contraction. That's right, shrink. Columbus could stand to do a little of it, too. But the word "growth" sounds so good when you're running for office or trying to make a buck.

But, please, don't dam up places like Sprewell Bluff to punish folks in smaller areas where common sense trumps politics. Don't transform Georgia from the Empire State of the South to the Stopped Up State of the South. And go check out places like Sprewell Bluff, the recently spared Jekyll Island and Georgia's other natural wonders before the state's economic barons and their hos in office get their grubby hands on them. And if you're into adventuring, the Flint has some great paddling in this area, including Class I-III rapids near Sprewell. I'd hate to kiss that goodbye.

A post of Flint Riverkeeper was recently created in the wake of this slap in the face to everyone outside the Atlanta metro area. Mark Woodall is the first Flint Riverkeeper and you'll be able to learn more about the program by clicking here.

As for our day at the bluff, it's always a little painful walking across those rocks in the swift current, but Saylor had a blast bodysurfing in the little bit of whitewater. And I had a blast getting back to nature, even amid the cigarette-littering rednecks. Even saw a guy get baptised Saturday. Good thing he went ahead and took care of that. It could be a lot deeper soon.

Friday, August 8, 2008


This just in: Russia has invaded Georgia. If you don't believe me, you can read about it here.

They tried to warn us about this in the 1980s with the movie "Red Dawn," but we've gotten complacent about the Russians. I've tried to get information from Free America on the radio, but they've taken over the airwaves and filled it with propaganda from John Tesh ... and regular playings of "Sweet Home Alabama" to placate the occupied locals.

Last I heard, they were closing in on Columbus, having already taken over LaGrange, Upatoi, Cusseta (where they were briefly caught in a speedtrap) and Ladonia. So, we seem to be surrounded. I'm going to get my letterman's jacket and a BB gun and head up to Pine Mountain, which I'll use as a base to launch commando attacks on the Russians. Who's with me?!


Thursday, August 7, 2008

Paris for president

I'm apparently one of the few who thinks Paris Hilton is NOT hot. Of course, I find natural beauties and women deeper than a thimble attractive, so I guess I kind of march to my own drummer. However, I do like the job she did in this clip, a response to John McCain's camp using her name in likening Barack Obama to a celebrity. If nothing else, it's much better than the lackluster performance in her first straight-to-video effort.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Just wondering ...

If oranges are called oranges, why aren't lemons called yellows?

Monday, August 4, 2008

The final out

Atlanta Braves announcer Skip Caray died in his sleep Sunday at the age of 68. Sometimes funny, often brash and always sarcastic, he provided a lot of the sounds in the background of my childhood memories. He also got me through a lot of nights on the sports desk when I worked at the Valdosta Daily Times. Until then, I'd suffered along with him through a lot of bad Braves games on TBS. But when the Braves got good in 1991, I was stuck at work and had to follow most of their games on the local AM radio station.

I especially loved the way he seemed to think every person who ever called in to the Braves' pregame radio shows were complete idiots. And he made sure a lot of them left feeling that way. You can watch a video about Skip's career here.