Wednesday, March 23, 2011

23 MAR 11: Here a Little, There a Little

On the old "Mickey Mouse Club," Wednesday was Anything Can Happen Day. We're doing something like that today. A lot of little features are combined in one post -- almost like we're trying to copy the new look of the Ledger-Enquirer.

BLOG UPDATE: The smoke seemed to clear Tuesday about our Blog Exclusive, on the fiery haze at the east edge of Columbus. It wasn't the work of Fort Benning or city crews - but Georgia state workers. I thought the new legislature was trying to avoid having tax dollars go up in smoke.

An e-mail obtained by your blog states last weekend's fire near Schatulga Road was "a federally required burning," conducted every three years by the Georgia Forestry Commission. I suppose the federal government orders such things to guard against massive wildfires -- because I've never heard of intensive lobbying in Washington by the match-making industry.

The Georgia Forestry Commission thought last Friday would have sufficient wind to scatter the smoke from a controlled burn near Schatulga Road. But on Friday night, the wind died, the smoke settled -- and some people became so unsettled that they called Columbus Fire/EMT to complain.

A Columbus Deputy Fire Chief reportedly ordered a halt to the controlled burn. But ashes smoldered until Monday morning, causing at least one plant near Schatulga Road to close its building and move personnel all the way to Peachtree City. Somehow, I think inmates at Rutledge State Prison will file lawsuits first about this.

THE BIG BLOG DUCK HUNT gains some competition today, and it doesn't really surprise us at all. Aflac announced Tuesday it's accepting ten days of submissions from the public for a new duck voice, to replace Gilbert Gottfried. We moved much faster to get a contest going, with voting open to YOU -- but that duck's footprint probably will be too big.

The Aflac talent search is allowing 30-second entries, which can include video clips. Our Duck Hunt chose not to have video submissions primarily due to a lack of bandwidth -- but also because the duck actor in the commercials is heard but not seen. Is Aflac planning a major expansion, requiring a duck which stands twice as tall?

We'd put a link here to Aflac's talent search page -- but if they didn't recognize the original Columbus Duck Hunt, why should we do them any favors? Mr. Little Blogger is ready to take on that tall tower on Wynnton Road. And with downsized thinking, lower costs will give me a smaller.... uh, well.... duck bill.

-> Our other blog starts with poker, then goes in directions you might not expect. Visit "On the Flop!" <-

E-MAIL UPDATE: The last two Sunday Soapbox posts prompt a reader to ask a question, which we suspect many have wondered....

Richard, if former Constable RS is so unhappy with the way life presents itself in the backwards village of Hurtsboro, then why doesn't he hoist up anchor and sail to an area where his efforts may be able to actually make a difference? I cannot tell him where his "Utopia" may be, but it is more than apparent that he has exceedingly worn out his welcome there. After all, the town's name doesn't indicate a proclamation of joy and happiness. He has "hurt" the townsfolk with his accusations and remarks and they have retaliated with the same. He does not seem to understand that he is an "outsider" to them, someone that has tried to change the only way of life that they are familiar with. I know, I have been there so I know from experience that you WILL NOT change their way of thinking. It is one of our modern day humorous philosophers, Ron White, that states that "you can't fix stupid." He may be able to re-locate to a town where his ideas might have a chance of falling on yearning ears but I can tell him for sure, he will not fix life and politics there.

I'll leave the main question here for Robert Schweiger to answer (and I'm quite sure he will). But to be fair, Hurtsboro is named after the son of an Atlanta land developer from the 19th century. The town is so small that I don't think it even has a Little Two Points.

Hurtsboro received a new economic blow Tuesday night, when the Russell County School Board voted to close Russell Elementary School. The principal happens to be Russell County Commissioner Larry Screws -- so Phenix City Councilor Jimmy Wetzel can expect a phone call from Screws sometime today.

From what I saw on WRBL, the 4-3 vote to close Russell Elementary School was along racial lines. But then again, most big votes by the Russell County School Board have been that way in recent years. This board needs a Russell County version of Mimi Woodson, to make every meeting a cliffhanger.

We have one more message today, which goes back to Monday's main topic on "deodorant":

A man who worked with my grandfather on his farm told him the trick to smelling nice after a day's hard work...He rubbed an uncooked slice of fatback in each armpit every morning...That calls for one of your good one liners...

I'm guessing there were no dogs on this farm -- or else they were given huge bowls of dog food to eat as a distraction.

SONG OF THE DAY: AT&T's plan to take over T-Mobile has brought a piece of classical music to mind. In fact, it's one of the most familiar arias in the world of opera. I'd call our version "grand opera," but I'm not charging $1,000 for front-row seats to let you hear it.

And now for dessert, a few news bites from Tuesday....

+ A Columbus Police officer was arrested on criminal trespass charges. WRBL reported Jonathan Jackson had an argument with a "Mall Cop" at the Peachtree Mall Sunglass Hut. Now Jackson is on "administrative leave" - which means the only time he can show off his fancy new sunglasses is when he hides from media interviews.

+ Phenix City Councilor Arthur Sumbry Sr. pleaded NOT guilty to the charges against him. Prosecutors reportedly want to put Sumbry on trial in June - but I don't really think all the critics of city government will be away on vacation then.

+ Columbus Finance Director Pam Hodge warned the city's "tax digest" is likely to be two percent lower next fiscal year. If not for base realignment at Fort Benning, things would be even worse - and the budget would be more like Reader's Digest.

+ WLTZ reported Georgia Governor Nathan Deal has declared Muscogee County a "Camera Ready Community." A city with a Kodak plant had better be....

+ Georgia advanced in the NCAA women's basketball tournament by felling Florida State 61-59. The second-round playoff game at Auburn Arena attracted only 2,214 fans - proving Auburn fans can't bring themselves to root for either team under any circumstances.

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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.

© 2003-11 Richard Burkard, all rights reserved.

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