Archive for March, 2011

She’s home!

March 21, 2011

Gisela and Marlee

Marlee’s such a fortunate Kitty to be loved by Gisela.  So am I.  When she’s away, it’s lonely around here without her.   Sunday evening, my wonderful wife returned from a week-long stay in New Mexico  She was in Albuquerque with two of our grandchildren and their parents (our son and daughter-in-law).    I struggle to tell Gisela how much I missed her and how happy she makes me with her return.  May you too be blessed with the love of  your life.    Welcome home Darling!

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The Gold Dome

March 20, 2011

Georgia’s gold plated capitol building shines above us as we run Saturday’s Downtown Dash For Diabetes 5K.  The money is used in diabetes research and to help families and victims of the disease.  As a reporter with WSB-Television, I’ve covered so many stories at the Capitol.    Among those is the gold-dome itself.   I’ve climbed a ladder into the narrow opening where you can see the dome from the inside out.    The north Georgia city of Dahlonega was the site of the nation’s first gold rush.    It had lot of gold that was mined and sold.   The cost of mining or panning for what little’s left is not commercially worthwhile except as a tourist attraction.    However, it was the citizens of Dahlonega and Lumpkin county who furnished the gold that replaced the tin atop the Capitol.  The year wss 1957.    Thirty years later,the gold-plated topping was in such disrepair that they began a campain to regild the dome.  The project was completed in 1981.  The citizens of Lumpkin County and Dahlonega again donated the gold.  These days, the Capitol Building and Grounds crews keep the dome bright and shiny.     Many visitors are awed by the sight, but for many others, it’s just a place to work.

“Blackie Malloy” =Wade Truett

March 19, 2011

In the “comment” section of this blog, you can read a message from “Jim” about his memories of the 1964 murders of  three Gwinnett County sheriff’s deputies.  He correctly identified two of those convicted as Alec Evans, Vincent Williams but he thought the third member of the trio was “Blackie Malloy”.    Jim’s memory may be confusing fact with fiction.   Seems to me that “Blackie Malloy” was a character from one of those fictional detective novels.  Fact:  the third man convicted was Wade Truett.   Truett got a good deal from the prosecution by testifying against Evans and Williams.   He later became a valuable informant for law enforcement officers.  Truett died of natural causes some years later.  Willliams was paroled after about 20 years in prison.  I don’t know whether he’s still alive.   I do know that the now 85-year-old Alec Evans still is in prison proclaiming his innocence.

“Ole Sparky”

March 18, 2011

Andrew DeYoung’s attorneys have won another delay for their client.  A judge sentenced DeYoung to death for the murder of his parents and sister.  It’s been 18 years since the evidence showed that DeYoung took the lives of 3 others, but he’s continued his life, albeit on Georgia’s death row.   On a motion filed by his attorneys, federal authorities have seized one of the 3 ingredients Georgia has been using in its lethal injection cocktails.  A judge ruled that Georgia bought the chemical from a non-approved source  outside the United States.  A spokesperson for the Georgia Department of Corrections says the state will suspend executions until the matter is resolved.   I’m wondering if the state will consider bringing “Ole Sparky”  or a new improved version back on line.   “Ole Sparky” was once the name for Georgia’s electric chair.  As a reporter I’ve witnessed an execution via “Ole Sparky”.    It’s a grim thing to watch, but  I stilled myself by remembering the victim of the convicted murderer and the family he left behind.

Saint Patrick

March 17, 2011

We celebrate Saint Patrick’s day March 17th.    March 17th was the date of the Irish Patron Saint’s death in 461.     Historians have written that he was a missionary in Ireland during the fifth century.   It’s reported that Ireland observes March 17th with solemnity and reverence contrasted with our celebrations in the United States. Perhaps you know some people who use the Saint’s death day as a reason to drink an excessive amount of alcoholic beverages.   Wonder what Saint Patrick would think about that?

A pre-purchase inspection

March 16, 2011

My son and I have been looking for a reasonably priced truck with a cargo box like you see at many rental places.   U-haul, Penske and Ryder are among the companies that sell their older used trucks.  We found a 1995 Ford 350 U-haul in Cobb County.  The odometer registered almost 190-thousand miles.    At $2400. it was an “as is”  deal.  It wouldn’t start.  We tried to jump it, but the battery in the old truck was too weak.  So we invested$80. in a new battery.  Voila, it cranked.   The V-8 engine sounded OK.  The folks at u-haul agreed to let us take it for a test drive and a pre-purchase inspection.  The inspection cost would be $45.  We drove the more than 15-year-old truck to a trusted auto repair shop.  About 30 minutes after putting the truck on the lift, the mechanic came out and said, “I’d pass on this one.”  He reported it had leaking transmission fluid and oil leaks almost everywhere oil can leak.   He also said there’s a mystery noise in the rear axle area that could spell even bigger trouble.  The mechanic told me that since he found so many mechanical things wrong, he didn’t bother to check the electronics.  He reduced the inspection fee by $10.    I was happy to pay the $35. to avoid future trouble.  We took the truck back to u-haul.  My son retrieved our $80. new battery.  He’ll use it as a spare for his Ford Ranger pickup.  In this instance, the pre-purchase-inspection was well worth the price.

Police and prostitutes

March 15, 2011

From Monday’s (3-14-11) Atlanta Journal Constitution: “When the sexual encounter was over and police officers  were seconds away from storming the room, the Sandy Springs detective told the woman she was under arrest.  ‘But we had sex,’ the woman said, ‘Can you do that?’

The excerpt is taken from a lawsuit against the Sandy Springs Police Department. The officer involved with the prostitute filed the suit.  It claims he was unfairly suspended for two days without pay for doing his job.

During my more than fifty years with WSB-Television, I remember other similar situations in metro Atlanta.   One that particularly stands out brought down a Cobb County Detective.   A prostitute was an informant and chief witness in a murder case.   Part of a particular detective’s  job was to keep her safe while they awaited the trial.  But the detective became personally involved with the prostitute.  It ruined his life and destroyed her credibility as a witness.

Again from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution: (The Sandy Springs Police Officer) “claimed in the lawsuit that that sort of behavior (having intercourse with a prostitute) was common place during vice investigations…'”

On the other hand, the director of the Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training told the AJC that his agency teaches officers that the minimum standard needed for probable cause to make an arrest is usually when money is exchanged for the promise of a sexual favor.  The fornication is not necessary to prosecute a case.  The woman involved with the detective was freed and all charges dropped.

 

 

Running in kilts

March 14, 2011

More than two-thousand people came to the Shamrock Rock ‘N roll 5K & 10K  Sunday in Atlanta.  It was at Atlantic Station, an in-town self-contained community.  Kilts were the style of the day for many.  The Atlanta Junior League of Women staged the event.    The Shamrock theme dominated with special awards going to the fastest kilts. Both men and women wore kilts or short skirts.  It was beautiful.

Our yearly reminder about DST

March 13, 2011

Almost all of  us know that Daylight Saving Time begins Sunday at 2 a.m.  So as we spring forward one hour, here is my annual reminder.  “Saving” is an adjective describing time.   “Savings” is a noun.     For example, your savings are in a bank.

 

Are you a philosopher?

March 12, 2011

I’ve posted a blog every day since June 6, 2009.   Some of it is based on my daily encounters with people and animals.   Other posts focused on my half-century of covering stories for WSB-Television and yes, I’ve done a little philosophizing.   Philosophy has its roots in the Greek language.  Philos=love.  sophos=wise.    So does it follow that a philosopher’s approach to life is based on love and wisdom?  There probably is no universal answer to that question, but in our philosophical moments, it could help us define who we really are.