Saturday morning Wendell Rinehart and Alfred Walker were shooting the breeze in the den of Walker's ranch-style home on Martin Luther King Drive. Man cave might be a more apt description of the room, which sports a bar, shag carpet and a large glass table laden with glossy sports magazines. The wall-mounted TV was tuned to an ESPN NFL preview.
With State playing in the College World Series this weekend, college baseball games of long ago come to mind. Even at the turn of the 19th century the rivalry between State and Ole Miss was fierce and in Oxford Mississippi Agricultural and Mechanical College (State's name back then) was called the "school for cow pullers." In the spring of 1897 the Red and Blue of Mississippi A & M played University (Ole Miss) a baseball game in Columbus.
Our elected officials have had plenty to say recently about the need for Mississippi to improve its education. A good place to start would be at the Legislature itself, which seems to have no grasp of the basic concepts of math.
After half-a century I feel I've finally gotten to the place I'm meant to be. It's not so much a physical place as it is an-everything-else place. It's a comfortable place where there's a lot less striving.
Had you been at the Hitching Lot Farmers Market Saturday morning you might have seen a young woman in a long, hot pink skirt carrying a small pig. Not to be outdone, the pig had a bright pink halter and matching leash.
Tuesday's municipal elections reaffirmed something Abraham Lincoln said during the Gettysburg Address about the nature of our system of government. Ours is a government of some of the people, by some of the people and for some of the people.
It is June 2002, and I am sitting in the middle of the West Alabama Gazette's office in Millport, Ala., writing an editorial for The Northport Gazette, the WAG's sister paper. The doors are flung open, and as dusk dims to dark, the cicadas increase their pitch.
Wispy clouds littered the blue sky on a warm, clear day. The humidity was low, and the sun was edging toward the tree line.
Tuesday, Starkville voters will go to the polls to choose a mayor. Incumbent Parker Wiseman faces a stiff challenge from Republican challenger Dan Moreland. In recent weeks, Moreland's campaign -- thought to be badly damaged by a recent audit that showed sloppy accounting and budgeting practices in the Starkville Parks Commission -- has gained momentum.
On Tuesday, voters in Columbus will go to the polls to select a mayor and the final seat on the city council. What sort of turn-out can be expected is unclear.
So tell me, what are you reading this summer? If you were going to recommend a book to a stranger or friend, what would it be? This was a question I put to half a dozen or so local readers.
One hundred and fifty years ago the Alice Vivian, a Tombigbee River steamboat turned Confederate blockade runner, was captured by the USS DeSoto while attempting to sail from Mobile to Havana, Cuba. Few steamboats anywhere experienced history as did the Alice Vivian.
Suppose you pick up your paper and a headline says the school superintendent is "declaring war" on dropping out of school. You would infer the superintendent will deploy assets and tactics to reduce the number of students who quit before receiving their diplomas.
Dr. Harry Sherman called and asked if we could meet at Plymouth Bluff Environmental Center. We toured the exhibits and he pointed out the merlin, a small falcon that had the misfortune to collide into our sunroom's window. The merlin was now immortalized in the nature exhibit.
When I saw the lizard sunning himself at the top of the door jam, it occurred to me I was standing where Martin Dain had stood just over 50 years earlier with his Leica as William Faulkner closed the door below where the lizard now sat unblinking.
1. Lynn Spruill: A watershed moment LOCAL COLUMNS
2. Voice of the people: Don Newman LETTERS TO THE EDITOR (VOICE@CDISPATCH.COM)
3. Lisa McLeod: One horrible thing wrong with schools NATIONAL COLUMNS
5. Slimantics: Our greatest unofficial national holiday LOCAL COLUMNS