Tuesday, July 14, 2009

14 JUL 09: On the Street Where You Live

Didya hear about the weekend drug arrest in Quitman County? Deputies say they captured a man with potent marijuana on High Street in Georgetown. Yes, you read that correctly -- a marijuana arrest on "High" Street. It almost makes you wonder if the suspect made a conscious decision to live there....

Until I heard this on WRBL Monday night, I didn't know Georgetown had a High Street. That street name in London refers to an area with top-dollar expensive big-name fashions. It obviously was named High Street because of the price tags.

A different and sad story on the Monday evening news mentioned another street, with a name which frankly puzzles me. Why is there an Ohio River Road in Cusseta? OK, there's "river" in the name of a mobile home park - but were all the mobile homes made in Cincinnati?

Perhaps they had to specify an Ohio River Road in Cusseta, because Columbus already has a well-known River Road. It winds fairly close to the Chattahoochee River, but you can't really see the river at any point from it. Well, not counting the morning that big water tank broke in April....

These news items started me thinking about other street names in our area. Some of them clearly are designed to point you in the right direction from Columbus. But Cusseta Road won't get you to Cusseta, nor will Buena Vista Road lead you to Buena Vista. Instead, you'll wind up in the hands of a suspicious MP at Fort Benning.

Some streets in local industrial parks are named after a business located there -- or one that used to be. The new NCR plant is being built on Panasonic Drive, as the facility used to be a Panasonic battery plant. Perhaps some of the federal stimulus money will pay for changing the signs to Dayton Avenue.

Then there are the streets which seem out of place, and potentially confusing to visitors. I'll never forget the frustration I had when I discovered East Britt David Road did NOT connect with West Britt David Road. Whoever put that airport in between them simply wasn't thinking.

And who knows how many tourists have been stunned to discover "Main Street" in Columbus is a long way from downtown? Main Street Village is much closer to Columbus Park Crossing than the Government Center - but then again, it's also much closer to the heart of local shopping.

Here are some other strange but true facts about Columbus streets and highways....

+ There's an Eve Court near Heath Park - but there's no street named Adam. Women's liberation supporters here must be more powerful than I thought.

+ Columbus has a Nina Street and a Pinta Drive - but nothing named Santa Maria. No, I don't think an anglicized Saint Mary's Road should count.

+ We've mentioned here before that Columbus has a Harbison Drive near Cusseta Road, with a Calvin Avenue not far away. So far no one's figured out a way to build a new street in that neighborhood for Mayor Jim Wetherington.

+ Oh yes - Columbus has a High Lane off Georgetown Drive. Don't be surprised if one of the new police beats has it right in the middle.

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E-MAIL UPDATE: Sunday's review of the new Columbus recycling center led to a comment....

Richard, You mentioned only one recycling drop-off site in Phenix City - the one in downtown PC near the animal shelter. The most popular site in PC is the one near the Roy Martin Recreation Center on Summerville Rd in north PC. That one is frequently overflowing especially on Mondays. Representatives from Phenix City Beautiful made a presentation before the City Council several months ago requesting several more sites especially one for the south PC area. Phenix City has applied for a grant to help fund more recycling sites. For your information city employees pick up the recyclables from both sites each day. There are bins for plastic, glass, newspapers, aluminum, and steel cans. I urge everyone to use these sites as recycling keeps these items out of the landfill and as landfills fill up it is very expensive to open new ones. Phenix City discontinued door-to-door recycling several years ago because not enough households were participating. It's too bad we don't have mandatory recycling like Germany. Recycling in Germany is a 40 billion dollar industry. In Germany you are charged a garbage fee based on the weight of your garbage. Of course what you put in your recycling container does not count towards your fee so the more you recycle the less your garbage fee is. I would like to see that implemented here.

When the city of Columbus held public hearings on trash collection last year, a former resident of California brought up the idea of mandatory recycling [8 Aug 08]. But nothing was mentioned about a weight requirement - and a recent health study showed both Georgia and Alabama are substantially overweight.

Meanwhile, the Lee County Commission approved an increase in garbage collection fees Monday night. Commercial customers will see their monthly bill double to 48 dollars. What's going on here? Haven't fuel prices dropped in Beauregard yet, the way they have in Columbus?

The Monday e-mail also had this short note:


Well, how nice of you to think of.... hey, wait a minute! Is this person implying I should have been at the games near Macon? That I'm (gasp) a redneck?!?! Why, my car doesn't even have any chrome hubcaps to toss.

Let's see what else caught our attention Monday:

+ Muscogee County's year-round elementary schools returned to class after a one-month break. The district is down to only two year-round schools, Georgetown and Rigdon Road. Yet for some reason, Kmart is showing discipline and NOT rushing the back-to-school sales.

+ A spokesman for Alabama's state parks told Troy Public Radio's "Community Focus" the Lakepoint Park lodge in Barbour County will reopen 3 August, after 18 months of renovations. I assume this includes larger refrigerators in the rooms, for holding all the bass you catch.

+ WLTZ reported more than 400 young women tried out in Columbus over the weekend for "America's Next Top Model." What was NOT reported was how the field was cut in half, when contestants mispronounced "Ga-Bama."

+ The Columbus Lions lost the indoor football semifinal game to Reading 60-51. The Lion coaches could give all sorts of explanations for this loss - such as Reading the Formations and Reading the Coverage.

(Did you watch the late-night highlights of the Reading-Columbus game? A few fans apparently traveled from Pennsylvania to the game, and had good lower-level seats. Again Columbus shows it can't pack the house for a big sports event, unless it's poker night at The Sports Page.)

+ Instant Message to Heath Jackson of WBOJ-FM "103.7 the Truth": Aw, c'mon - what do you mean, one fill-in week as a morning host "killed" you?! I'd guess Lee McCard is a little older than you, and he has no trouble doing it the rest of the year. Start slowly, walking around the track at Lakebottom Park.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author -- not necessarily those of anyone else in Columbus living or dead, and perhaps not even you.

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