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Number of posts: 26
Email address: email
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Posts by Bill Montgomery:
It’s great to see that the AJC, my journalism alma mater for a generation until I retired, recently ran a fascinating and lengthy story about the “prestige” license tags that thousands of Georgia drivers put on their cars for only $35 to the DMV.
For the record, I wrote the same story, oh, 30 some years ago, and had a fun time doing it.
In more than three decades as a reporter with the AJC, mostly covering cops, crime and other forms of wrongdoing and public idiocy, (see legislature, Georgia) what I wrote was seldom funny. I guess that’s why the rare exceptions stick with me years. There were two, and both took place in the south metro Atlanta area near College Park.
The first was an attempted robbery of a Taco Bell by a 20-year-old guy with a shotgun and wearing baggy, low slung pants drooping around his butt…
One of my most enduring, indeed, ironically humorous memories from years of reporting for the AJC, especially if you have a twisted fancy for the absurd (and bizarre) like me, occurred on a Labor Day weekend at Stone Mountain a generation ago. I had been in Atlanta for about a year, and was assigned to work a Saturday evening and night, like many newcomers, for the Sunday paper. My assignment: to watch an annual Ku Klux Klan rally at the foot of the iconic mountain. Not to write anything, the night city editor instructed, unless “something happens.” And boy, something sure as hell did.
The Most Despised
There is a social ladder behind prison bars as rigid as any on Palm Beach or Martha’s Vineyard , and on the very bottom rung is the child killer and molester.
The most despised too, as I was reminded by Sunday’s AJC in a fine piece by Bill Rankin about the grisly murder of child molester Steven O’Bara five years ago behind the grim gray walls of the Atlanta Federal Penitentiary, known as “The Big A.
Das Waren Zeiten
I wish Mel Brooks, maestro of the Broadway hit and the even funnier movie version of “The Producers” — his whacko inspiration that made an insane musical comedy out of Nazi Germany — could have been with us one inebriated night a generation and more ago.
Who knows what more zaniness Brooks’ twisted humor could have added? Especially if he had guzzled as much wine as my fellow airmen and I had. The possibilities are endless. Because I’m sober as I write this, I won’t try to come up with any. I’m not that creative. Or addled, take your pick.
Rush to Judgment
Mike Luckovich crafted a real winner in his Wednesday a.m. AJC cartoon mocking the loud, perpetually pissed off Rush Limbaugh: a poster of the radio talk jock on the bedroom wall of a couple as the perfect contraceptive.
The drawing captures the essence of Limbaugh’s shtick on the radio, and how he comes across to me as a person – fat jowls, a cavernous open mouth, mean, slitted eyes. He sounds so angry, sometimes I halfway expect his head to explode, soiling the studio carpet.
Since that hasn’t happened in over 20 some years, I suspect his radio rants are in part just that, an act. It must work, since it’s made the loudmouth millions.
Decades later, I fondly recall the really fine holiday noon meals every Christmas and Thanksgiving dished out by the chow hall at Hahn Air Base in Germany during three years serving my “friends and neighbors” in the Cold War.
To be fair, and counter the legends about military chow, the food there was rarely poor, and ranged from OK to “pretty good” more days than not. But the cooks turned out a really great spread for the two traditional late year holidays.
Turkey, ham, roast beef, dressing, sweet potatoes, even shrimp cocktail, butternut squash, cold jellied cranberry sauce, pumpkin, apple and mince pie, strawberry the works. And the high point of the day, if you were on duty and had to return in less than an hour to humping a flight line of fighter jets in the snow and/or frigid cold for another four hours (or more} with an M-16 on your back.
Worthy of Comment
Also on the Dew
For some reason, a letter from the lobbying arm of the Heritage Foundation was characterized as having been received by NBC News, as if it were some sort of privileged communication. In fact, the thing was a press release and rather obviously designed to change the conversation about the Heritage Foundation from trying to defend the indefensible "study" of Hispanic intellectual insufficiency to food stamps, a real two-fer issue. Two-fer in the sense of being offensive on two fronts since the dollars doled out represent a subsidy to industrial agriculture, even as they serve to remind the indigent that, if they're Read on →
Anything characterized by high energy, originality, humor and intelligence is bound to get my attention. I was at an annual fund-raising party for an alternative art center called Nexus in about 1986. Touring the studios I kept being distracted from the visual art by some very interesting Rock 'n Roll. I wasn't the only one. A large segment of the crowd was gathered around the Swimming Pool Qs in the courtyard. Once in their vicinity I was there for as long as they would play. In any field of endeavor certain efforts stand out and the Qs were (are) definitely one Read on →
When I sat in that old church built in the Gothic style surrounded by the music that the organist was playing, I was thankful to be in such a peaceful setting, far away in body and spirit from the violence that holds so many lives hostage in this world of cruelty and tumult. In a church where people pray for peace, forgiveness and love--all of which seem so lacking in our world--I wonder at times how we manage to reconcile what we wish the world were like and how it actually is. Sitting there in such a calm and safe spot, Read on →
My beloved colleagues in Teh Media sure get on my last damn nerve. Most of the time it's just from sloppy work or jumping on whatever bandwagon is rolling by at the time, something along the lines of a pet peeve. Like when my Twitter list of political reporters blows up with some hashtag meme instead of actual reporting. Today it's #Obamacareinthreewords, launched by that icon of credibility, Rep. Darrell Issa. It's the second time around for that one -- Rep. Kevin McCarthy launched it the first time last June. (@WhiteHouse even got in on it, tweeting "It's.The.Law." Republicans responded with "arrogance Read on →