The sudden death of Tim Russert has caused many people to think about the reality of death. Recently, I have been to several funerals and the one common thread in all of them was that everyone is terminal. It is ultimate equality that everybody dies, rich or poor, black or white. After death, there is no chance to listen to a person for any comment that should have been expressed before the person left us behind.
Are we Georgians a privileged group or what? Here we sit in the greatest state in the union with its majestic mountains; beautiful beaches; the oldest state-chartered university in the nation located in Athens, the Classic City of the South; sweet Vidalia onions and more barbecue than we can eat.
There's only one statewide race on the Aug. 5 runoff election ballot, the Democratic battle for the Senate between Vernon Jones and Jim Martin. But if you asked me to predict the winner of this one, I'd have to confess I have no clue.
Whenever I talk to a friend or acquaintance who keeps up with the activities of the legislature, I'm amazed at how often the same question comes up: Is anybody going to run against the speaker?
Were it not for the legions of Democrats who recognized their party had left them, Republicans here wouldn't have the majority they now enjoy. That's partly why a lot of people are disgusted with the GOP county executive committee publicly denouncing clerk of court candidate Bob Vass for voting in the Democratic presidential preference primary.
Sometimes I pick up the newspaper, turn to the opinion page, and read the last line of a column or letter to the editor first, just to figure out where the writer wants to take me. The last sentence of a recent column in the Atlanta papers certainly got my attention.
No good deed goes unpunished. Recently I mentioned that Sen. Saxby Chambliss wanted to hear from you regarding your thoughts on the current energy crisis. A lot of you wrote him, and many of you sent me a copy. I found your letters a lot more thoughtful than the reply you received from the senator's office. To call the response a "form letter" would demean form letters.
When I announced to my friends, associates and relatives that I was going to spend two weeks in Mongolia to be present when my grandson, Mark, marries a beautiful Mongolian named Miigaa, about half of them asked where Mongolia was.
Americans are the most generous people on the earth.
People who enjoy watching soap operas should turn off their TV sets and start tuning in to the Department of Transportation and the appointed commission that oversees it, the State Transportation Board. Over the past few months, it's been a much more entertaining show.
My daughter saw the books on my desk. "More Bush bashing," she remarked. "Not at all," I replied.
Both the Vietnam and Iraq wars were undeclared, so it is difficult to find their exact point of origin or of ending.
This is a story of two good men. Separated in age by several decades and in geography by several thousand miles, but with much in common: Successful careers, devoted family men, veterans, athletes, men of high character. Both with a love for the University of Georgia. Both are my friends.
Half a lifetime ago I worked as a parole officer. One of my duties was to interview the families of prospective parolees. I'd get information for a narrative about the inmate's personal life, their background, education, community support and postrelease plans.
Before the booing and counter-booing begin, let's remember what the gun symbolizes in American culture: More than the bald eagle or the don't-tread-on-me serpent, the firearm to the American male and increasing numbers of females has come to stand for our ideals of independence.
I heard about the abandoned kitten last week. My friend Lisa lives in a trailer community with five or six other families. She told the story with the breathless terror that most folks reserve for relating their encounter with a bear ... or a zombie.
Gov. Nathan Deal was the picture of confidence last week as he presided over the traditional lighting of the state Christmas tree.
It was as ugly as a wart hog, but for the 11th time in the past 12 years, 38th of the past 50 and 65th out of 108, the University of Georgia, the oldest state-chartered university in the nation, located in Athens, the Classic City of the South has bested You-Know-Where Institute of Technology for the State Football Championship, 41-34.
There's an old joke that goes, "a bank is a place that will lend you money if you can prove that you don't need it."
As of this writing, six world powers have reached an agreement with Iran that would prevent that country from developing nuclear weapons.
Knock! Knock! Knock!
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