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Saturday, December 20, 2014
Southern Weather Radar


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    stretch

    One Human Instinct – Always in Our Service

    by | Oct 13, 2014
    One Human Instinct - Always in Our Service

    Some are born lucky. Others are born rich or marry into money. Still others create endless streams of opportunity. And perhaps when we can’t answer yes to the aforementioned, we can easily feel entitled.

    But in other ways, the playing field remains level. Certain attributes of the human condition we have control over, starting with the meaning we assign to the events of our life. And yes, positive events lead us to assign more pleasant meanings.

     

     

    dreams

    A Hard Day’s Night

    by | Oct 12, 2014
    Dreams Don't Turn to Dust by Alex Timlinson aka: hootalex from Devianart.com.

    The tiny old man wheezed and warned me to leave him alone since he was just looking for a wall to lean against. He was an examination of human frailty, revealed in blurred and jagged fragments. He told me to beware of joy. Thus ended another of my dreams that left me a bit shaken and in need of understanding. In some of my dreams, such as this one, everything is frequently miniaturized and even immaterial …

     

     

    150 years later

    Mr. R.E. Lee, Without the Flags

    by | Oct 6, 2014
    Mr. R.E. Lee, Without the Flags

    The Confederate flags are now gone from around the incumbent marble Robert E. Lee, at eternal rest with his riding boots on in the innermost sanctuary of Lee Chapel in Lexington, Va. That is as it should be, for many reasons. One is historical. Our campus was a sanctuary of recovery from the Civil War, where “the sun falls through the ruined boughs of locusts/ Up to the president’s office.” That president was Lee, “in a dark civilian suit who walks,/ An outlaw fumbling for the latch, a voice/ Commanding in a dream where no flag flies.”

     

     

    Golden Isles

    Road to Nowhere and Nowhere Roads

    by | Oct 4, 2014
    Road to Nowhere and Nowhere Roads

    Let it not be said that our far Northwest state, Alaska, has a monopoly on Nowhere. While their “Bridge to Nowhere” garnered much national attention on the political and comedy circuit, here in Southeast Georgia, we’ve got a whole lot of nowhere. Not only have we got the state Department of Transportation doing a major expansion of a road to nowhere from two lanes to four, we’ve got a peninsula on our island (bet you didn’t know that it was possible to have a peninsula on an insula), sporting more than fifteen mapped roads that aren’t to be found on the ground.

     

     

    get up

    Stretch, move, walk around … instead of sitting at work all day

    by | Oct 2, 2014
    Stretch, move, walk around ... instead of sitting at work all day

    The realities and consequences of our sitting all day become obvious… yet overlooked… except to our bodies. Actually, our bodies emerge as the brave soldiers here, now doing what they were never designed to do: SIT. Hour after day after week… too bad our IRA’s are not accumulating assets like this. Sitting is sometimes compared to smoking. Is that legit? Well, yes and no. Yes, from the standpoint that the ultimate cost of sitting…

     

     

    the muse be with you

    The Schoolboy Presses On

    by | Oct 1, 2014
    The Art of Poetry with Robert Pinsky - edX

    Like the proverbial schoolboy with his nose pressed up against the glass of the candy display, I can’t seem to get enough of the various on-line and free classes offered over the edX educational program conceived of by a couple of Harvard professors just a few years ago. This fall I’ve perhaps bitten off more than a full plate by registering for six different classes. They range from the Greek epics to Chinese history to current events in the Middle East…

     

     

    from a to z

    Original Google

    by | Sep 27, 2014
    Original Google

    As a boy I read the Weekly Reader, Outdoor Life, Superman comic books, and the Hardy Boys Adventures. Books were not overly abundant and I read whatever I could. Back then the only library in the world was my elementary school’s one-room collection of books organized by the Dewey Decimal System. Remember it? The 200s covered Religion, the 600s Technology, and the 800s covered Literature. We had to memorize all ten classes, and walk on command to a given class where it sat on the shelves. Today we click a mouse and voila! We are transported to anything we want to know.

     

     

    follow your bliss

    Trying To Do The Impossible

    by | Sep 25, 2014
    Trying To Do The Impossible

    “All of us failed to match our dreams of perfection. So I rate us on the basis of our splendid failure to do the impossible.”-- William Faulkner

    It’s been quite a spate of birthdays for famous writers this latter part of September, the beginning of autumn when we slowly let go of whatever is left of our ties with summer. The daily Writer’s Almanac column always provides for interesting bits and pieces of the lives of writers, but this week seems to have been special.

     

     

    eavesdropping

    “You’d a thought they were pricing meat…”

    by | Sep 20, 2014
    Man looking at pill bottle in pharmacy

    Mankind has made remarkable progress in every arena of human endeavor except possibly getting Congress to do anything, getting women as hosts on late night tv and getting speedy service from the local pharmacy. Even in this Twenty-First Century, the time it takes to get a fill or refill of a script can take “from here to eternity.”

    Recently, I trudged up to  the neighborhood apothecary for a prescription re-up. It’s toward the end of the work day, the place is crowded and I’m at the end of a long line of folks waiting to be served. None of the folks waiting appears to be in a festive mood.

     

     

    come the election

    It’s About the Climate, Stupid

    by | Sep 17, 2014
    The lobster boat “Henry David T” action at the Brayton Point Power Plant

    Readers of my articles on LikeTheDew will know that I’m not an advocate of defying the law, but I’m about to encourage this where necessary. Often focused on the joys of my grandchildren, this time I’m focused on yours too. I’m talking about Climate Change and our need to DO something about it.

    I was heartened to read about two activists who set an example in May 2013, protesting about the burning of coal in an attention-seeking move…

     

     

    spill your guts

    The Nut Magnet

    by | Sep 16, 2014
    The Nut Magnet

    I have a built in magnet. It works to attract people that I otherwise might not meet. My magnet can be depended upon to pull near to me the craziest, neediest, saddest, and loneliest people in proximity. Tales of woe, distress, illness, sabotage, conspiracy, and government plots all have been the subject of unprovoked sharing. Likewise I hear about triumph over adversity, evil corporations, and politicians. They approach in grocery aisles, department stores, ladies rooms, parking lots, and today in a crosswalk. What is it about me that says “Spill your guts, I can take it?”

     

     

    dreaming

    Holdin’ Your Mouth Right

    by | Sep 15, 2014
    Holdin' Your Mouth Right

    If you ask me what makes the world spin around, I’ll tell you it ain’t love or money or even oil from the Middle East. I swear to God, it’s irony — sheer good old-fashioned, unadulterated irony. Sometimes I get the impression the thing has jumped on my back, attached itself like a leech and hung on like the hot Georgia sun in the Dog Days of summer. Irony seems to stalk me wherever I go. Of course, I’m getting a little ahead of myself… Man, I wish I could take credit for that look on her face! I’d like to say it was because of something I’d said that was righteously clever. I can’t though. But, I swear, the look on her was all quirky and bizarre and priceless at the same time…

     

     

    the mighty chestnut

    Look Homeward, Angel

    by | Sep 15, 2014
    Look Homeward, Angel

    The mass killers came as stowaways aboard ships about the time the Kitty Hawk first took to flight along a North Carolina beach. Although these assassins were merciless, they probably did not even know themselves the great destruction they were to bring.

    Thus began the near complete killing of all the American Chestnuts in this country. The pathogens that had probably slipped into the country on infected nursery stock consumed relatively little time in destroying the forests of American Chestnuts ranging from Maine to the southern Appalachians. It took fewer than forty years.

     

     

    sea pines, ga

    Stasis in the Dynamic Dunes

    by | Sep 11, 2014
    Aerial photo of Sea Island dunes by James Holland, our Altamaha Riverkeeper

    What’s a dynamic dune? It’s a reference that was changed to just “dunes” in the law, perhaps because it left too many people confused. Or perhaps the idea that dunes change and move was upsetting to people who want their environment to stay the same.

    In any event, it’s hard to deny that the purveyors of entertainment on Sea Island, Georgia, are bound and determined to “fix” their venue, even though it means breaking the law to do so. Pictures don’t lie.

     

     

    perception v. reality 1

    Explaining White Privilege to People, Especially Some People of Color

    by | Sep 9, 2014
    Explaining White Privilege to People, Especially Some People of Color

    I came across this blog written by Gina Crosley-Corcaran titled “Explaining White privilege to a Broke White People.” Well, after hearing a few African Americans who have succeeded say that racism and “white privilege” does exist and did not block their ability to achieve, I thought I would review Peggy McIntosh’s “White privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack” and share a few thoughts and questions about “white privilege.” These are paraphrased from what was asked by Gina Crosley-Carcaran in her article.

     

     

    locking in love

    The Crushing Weight Of Love

    by | Sep 4, 2014
    The Crushing Weight Of Love

    About five years ago a lovely phenomenon took hold in Europe. Couples wrote, etched, painted, and scratched their names onto padlocks and latched them to fences and railings on bridges. They hurled the keys into the river, canal, what have you. “Nothing can break our love.” In particular, the Pont des Arts footbridge over the Seine in Paris gained renown for this ritual. Only an intrepid scuba diver or bolt-cutting interloper could destroy their love, and that would take some doing. Just imagine all the keys resting on the bottom.

     

     

    the michael brown killing

    The Value of A Human Life Revisted

    by | Sep 4, 2014
    The Value of A Human Life Revisted

    Over the past few days since the shooting of Michael Brown the discussions on the various cable channels have been quite interesting. It truly illustrated that your perception of the shooting all comes from your point of view. If you are conservative, whether black or white, you find every reason you can point to Michael Brown’s past and actions on that day to justify the officer’s shooting of that young man six times. You strive for every fact to prove your point that the shooting was justified. If you are liberal, you are doing the same thing except it is too valid the outrage over the shooting.

     

     

    capitalism at work

    New suburban cities raiding county police for officers

    by | Sep 3, 2014
    New suburban cities raiding county police for officers

    The birthing of several new suburban towns around Atlanta has had an impact on Gwinnett, something you might call an “unintended consequence.” One of these has been the hiring by these new towns of members of the Gwinnett County police force, taking officers trained by the Gwinnett Police Academy to fill the ranks of the newly-formed police departments. Other areas big enough to have their own police academies, Atlanta, DeKalb, and Cobb counties have also been targeted as place to hire fully-trained officers.

     

     

    behaving like christians

    Grace Behind the Cotton Curtain

    by | Aug 31, 2014
    Image of two young men with palms together licensed by LikeTheDew.com at Fotolia.com - © xixinxing

    When I met Ernest, we courted for five months, and after we married, on February 2, 1974, in Fort Valley, GA. That was 40 years ago.   I wrote my parents in Anniston, AL.  They replied with the hardest letter that I have ever received. They knew I was gay. That was not their problem. Ernest’s being black was the hard part for them. In their letter they wished us all happiness but asked me not to bring Ernest home with me.

     

     

    happy birthday to me

    Never Look Back

    by | Aug 31, 2014
    Never Look Back

    “Old Age is like everything else. To make a success of it, you’ve got to start young.” –Fred Astaire

    It’s finally happened to me… I’m now the Biblical threescore and ten years old. I went to bed after a great meal, wonderful evening with my ever-loving wife Jody, some funny conversation, a little mystery on the telly and woke up… well, I didn’t feel any different.

     

     

    travel

    Fly Up, Drive Back: a New York City/Atlanta Driveby

    by | Aug 30, 2014
    Fly Up, Drive Back: a New York City/Atlanta Driveby

    Monday, Day One: newly merged Southwest Air/Air Tran offered the best price, $144 one way Atlanta/New York City. The sore butt that kicked in about halfway, and lingered, suggests one of the reasons – but the thrifty, I’ve learned, endure the affordable. The relief of wheels thumping good ol’ runway quickly faded, replaced by the stress of navigating around outside my current comfort zone. Once the new terrain becomes familiar, the zone expands and that’s when the fun starts.

     

     

    shady spots

    So Long as I Am There, I Am Somewhere: Being Dead in the Appalachian Wilderness

    by | Aug 29, 2014
    So Long as I Am There, I Am Somewhere: Being Dead in the Appalachian Wilderness

    Above my family homestead in the East Tennessee foothills is an old, abandoned cemetery.  I admit I’ve never seen it, but I think about it often.  I imagine the worn stone markers neck deep in leaves in the fall or peeking out of the winter snow like early hyacinths.   In my imagination, I never bothered to name these people, much less engage in meaningful character development.  I don’t know them in any sense of the word; I just know that they are up there, tucked deeply in an earthy hollow waiting for whatever comes next.

     

     

    fanciful thoughts

    Barefoot In Time

    by | Aug 28, 2014
    Barefoot In Time

    She somewhat resembled the retired but not really old men who can’t wait to don their big blue hats and disappear into the basement for long periods to “work on” their elaborate model train sets. Like them, she could easily slip into a fantasy world where objects of interest were always smaller and at times had to be willed to be seen. She could spend hours gathering moss and twigs to build fairy houses and would then sit quietly nearby waiting for occupants. Little did she suspect that if you make them, they don’t necessarily come. And she was nearing forty.

     

     

    superfriend

    Hollywood’s Effect

    by | Aug 27, 2014
    'Charles Allen Lattimore, Sr.

    Hollywood died last week. No, not that Hollywood, not that Hollywood of a lesser kind–that Hollywood out in La La Land. Rather, it was the real Hollywood, the iconic cherub-cheeked, perpetually smiling man, who cut hair and worked magic over at Murden’s Barber Shop in southwest Atlanta, Ga for almost forty years. Even for some of the legions who know him, ‘Charles Allen Lattimore, Sr.’ could be the answer to a trivia question on TV’s Jeopardy quiz show: ‘What is Hollywood’s real name?’

     

     

    handmaiden of segregation

    Ferguson and Sea Island, two sides of the same coin

    by | Aug 21, 2014
    Peace Officer - Caricature by DonkeyHotey via his Flickr photo stream and used under Creative Commons license. https://www.flickr.com/photos/donkeyhotey/14924476621/in/photolist-

    Why do we care what happens in Ferguson, Missouri? Because on some level we recognize that if any one group or community can be officially deprived of their human and civil rights without restraint, then it can happen to any other group or neighborhood. Sea Island, Georgia is proof. Sea Island, Georgia has been turned into an exclusive neighborhood. Random visitors are turned away at a guarded gate and even residents driving off the island must pause and wait for the barricade to rise and let their vehicle pass unscratched.

     

     

    winston churchill

    Learning about extent of World War II battlegrounds

    by | Aug 18, 2014
    Learning about extent of World War II battlegrounds

    For today, a different perspective, learning from history. Reading Winston Churchill’s massive six-book history of World War II gives new insights into that war, at least for me. For instance, it appears that my main interest was the fight against the Germans, by the English, Russian, French and Allied forces. Perhaps others had more interest in the war in the Pacific Theatre. Even I, as one alive during World War II, remember the massive fighting emanating out of the Philippines, in the Coral Sea area, Okinawa and Iwo Jima,…

     

     

    visitors

    Cucumbers And Calipers

    by | Aug 18, 2014
    The Ancient of Days by William Blake - from Whitworth Art Gallery The University of Manchester UK The Bridgeman Art Library via Wikimedia.org (public domain)

    In his poem The Cabbages of Chekhov, Robert Bly had me again when he wrote that,

    “William Blake knew that fierce old man,
    irritable, chained, and majestic, who bends over
    to measure with his calipers the ruins of the world.”

    Despite such a fierce image in his poem, Bly has that way about him where he can rescue you in the end from all the bad news that comes tracked in on the dog’s paws.

     

     

  • Worthy of Comment



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    Paul McCartney, The Druggist And The Devil On "The Funky Side Of Town"

    By: Jeff Cochran

    It's the second week of January 1999 and the McCartneys are visiting Atlanta. But not for a concert. On this trip, Heather McCartney is unveiling her line of houseware items at the America's Mart, and Paul is there to guarantee his daughter ample media play. After helping to promote Heather's rugs, cushions and other items arrayed with designs inspired by the Huichol and Tarahumara tribes of Mexico, Paul and his son, James, make a smooth exit to explore the side streets of Atlanta. According to Paul, James, then 21, wanted to "visit the funky side of town." So into the  Read on →

    What Kind of Idiots?

    What Kind of Idiots?

    By: Monica Smith

    What kind of idiots shell out, or commit themselves to borrow, two hundred thousand dollars for a row house and then sign on to a "warranty" that warrants nothing other than their responsibilities as buyers and owners? Rubes from the hinterlands of Georgia, mostly, but also a bloke in New South Wales. Imagine! I have written earlier about the mortgage notes that condition a loan on the buyers of property ceding their civil rights to the financier--e.g. on a standard Georgia form the borrower: (2)Waives all rights which Borrower may have under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution of the United  Read on →

    What Have We Become?

    What Have We Become?

    By: Dave Pruett

    "A good end cannot sanctify evil means; nor must we ever do evil that good may come of it." -- William Penn The iconic images of recent protests in Ferguson, Missouri -- after the police shooting death of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teen -- have left Americans of all ilks wondering: Is this America? Military Humvees, still in camouflage and mounted with machine guns, in the hands of municipal police. SWAT teams of police in full riot gear, bristling with automatic weapons, pointed at a lone protestor with hands up. Have we become a police state? Americans now have yet another  Read on →

    A Gift For You

    A Gift For You

    By: Tom Poland

    My friend and co-author, Robert Clark, and I long planned to give readers a look at the Southland and its abundant beauty, unusual charms, and fascinating stories. We came up with “Closed Wednesdays” but never got it off the ground. Too much traveling, too many book-related events, and life’s way of throwing detours in our path got in the way. We stepped back and thought things over and decided to offer readers something a bit shorter. Seems today’s hectic pace discourages many from reading long pieces. Robert’s idea, “The Photo of the Week,” resulted and so far it is getting a good recept  Read on →