LOCAL COLUMNS

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Birney Imes: The Hitching Lot Saturday morning

Posted 11/12/2011 in Local Columns

Gwen Gouveia's earliest childhood memories are of light bulbs darkened with shoe polish, lowered green window shades and the cold dampness of the dirt floor of a bomb shelter. Gouveia -- the name is Portuguese -- was 15 months old and in her high chair when the Japanese surprised her hometown on that Sunday morning in 1941.

Democracy in plain view

Posted 11/9/2011 in Local Columns

On the second floor of the Lowndes courthouse, there is a room where on election night candidates gather with their family and supporters, media and political junkies to watch returns as they come in.

Scott Colom: Mississippi should adopt early voting

Posted 11/9/2011 in Local Columns

This Tuesday I witnessed the best evidence for early voting.

Birney Imes: In Rita's kitchen

Posted 11/5/2011 in Local Columns

If Rita Jones ever invites you for dinner, don't even bother checking your calendar; just say yes. In a minute I'll tell you why.

Scott Colom: How do you change culture?

Posted 11/3/2011 in Local Columns

A recent news story in the Clarion Ledger caught my attention; it was titled "Culture change in Mississippi urged." The article focused on a recent presentation given by the state economist, Darrin Webb, at a conference hosted by the Mississippi Economic Policy Center.

Birney Imes: Tripping the light fantastic in the world of magazines

Posted 10/29/2011 in Local Columns

Chances are if you've ever heard or seen a news story about some development in the magazine world, you've heard the voice of Samir Husni. And if you work in that field, it's almost certain you know of Mr. Magazine, as he calls himself.

 

Carol Littlejohn: Report cards for 4-year-olds and tattooed Barbies

Posted 10/28/2011 in Local Columns

My first phone was a pink "princess" one and my Mother could pick-up on the kitchen phone and know exactly what I was talking about and when. 

 

Birney Imes: Talking chain saws with Sebastian Junger

Posted 10/22/2011 in Local Columns

OK, your first book ("The Perfect Storm") spent three years on the New York Times bestseller list and was made into a motion picture starring George Clooney; you've worked as a war correspondent in Africa and in Afghanistan for Vanity Fair; you wrote a much-acclaimed book ("War") and co-produced an Academy Award nominated documentary ("Restrepo") from the Afghanistan experience. You would think someone with that sort of success and the accompanying fanfare -- scores of book signings, TV appearances, readings, even a turn on Hollywood's red carpet -- might be a little stuffy, a little jaded when dealing with admirers in a far-flung small town in the South.

 

Eighth Annual Southern Belle Cotton Pickin' 100 early entry deadline approaching

Posted 10/22/2011 in Local Columns

The early entry deadline is rapidly approaching for the 8th Annual Southern Belle Cotton Pickin' 100 at Magnolia Motor Speedway in Columbus, Oct. 27-29. Competitors have until today to file their early entry for the event. The early entry fee is $100. After this date, the entry fee will be $150.

 

Birney Imes: The search for a winner

Posted 10/15/2011 in Local Columns

Reading resumes is a bit like reading tea leaves, I would think. The art of telling fortunes by studying the residue in the bottoms of wine glasses and tea and coffee cups is called tasseography. How it's done, I have no idea. Over the years, though, I've read a lot of resumes. Last week I was among 21 Columbians looking at the resumes of 25 people who want to be Columbus' next police chief.

Scott Colom: Character best deterrent to crime

Posted 10/12/2011 in Local Columns

Most local media outlets carried the story of the strong-arm house robbery several weeks ago, but for me it was very personal. While not an immediate member of my family, the victim has worked with my father's law firm for years and is loved by my family as if she were a member.

 

Haley Barbour: PERS study to protect system solvency, public employees

Posted 10/8/2011 in Local Columns

Democrats and some in the news media have repeatedly criticized my decision to create a study commission to analyze the long-term solvency of the Public Employees' Retirement System. These attacks are aimed at politicizing a well-guided study commission and waging a fear-mongering campaign to scare state employees and retirees into voting Democrat during the 2011 legislative elections.

 

Scott Colom: Falcons look to defeat South Panola (again)

Posted 10/5/2011 in Local Columns

In 1999, the improbable happened. On a rainy Friday night, the Columbus Falcons beat the South Panola Tigers. At the time, South Panola was the defending 5A state champion, undefeated and building its reputation as a football powerhouse. In comparison, Columbus, which had recently been created by combing Lee High and Caldwell, had never had a winning season. The expectations for defeat were so widespread that classmates joked with CHS players about how badly the team would get beat.

Scott Colom: The police balancing act

Posted 9/28/2011 in Local Columns

The recent outcry over the execution of Troy Davis reminded me of the difficult balancing act for police. On the one hand, with every homicide the police are under tremendous pressure to solve the crime quickly.

Birney Imes: Talking Jesus by the side of the road

Posted 9/26/2011 in Local Columns

Chris Colley is a holy man who sleeps under bridges. This year he has also slept in a preacher's garage apartment and recently camped behind the farm shop of a Mennonite in Aberdeen. He's just finished reading a book about Daniel Boone and Abraham Lincoln he got while in Hopkinsville, Ky., but mostly he reads from a red, palm-sized Gideon's Bible.

Birney Imes: Flowers by the side of the road

Posted 9/17/2011 in Local Columns

Like some sort of airborne grasshopper, the yellow crop duster dips and swoops above the white fields. The flier has little to worry about here, one small clump of trees and a single row of power lines along a dusty gravel road. There is a hypnotic beauty to his dance; an upward loop and a flip and then he's again skimming across the tops of cotton plants, leaving a fine mist in his wake.

 

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