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December 3, 2009     The Harris County Journal
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Opinions & Ideas PAGE 4-A - HARRIS COUNTY JOURNAL - THURSDAY, DEC. 3, 2009 THE HARMS COUNTY JOURNAL USPS 235960 A ($firaes ~lirafim~ Milla~ B. Grimes, President Official Legal Organ for Harris County 1VIn.LARO B. GRIa4ES PRESIDENT/CEO JOHN KUYKENDALL I~LISFIF~DITOR MICHAEL C. SNIDER ~xSSOCIATE EDITOR ROB ][~ICHARDSON L,AYOUT EDITOR LAURIE J. LEWIS ADVERTISING DIRECTOR WEN]OY WAGES BUSINESS I~A GER Phone (706) 628 5370 or 1706) 846-3188 Fax (706) 846-2206 or 628-9044 R Oi Box 75. 112 North College Street Hamilton, Georgia 31811 A Lot To Write About I didn't write a column last week. No one seemed to mind or notice. I get the same pay whether I write a column or not but after 60 years, a week- ly column is a habit I'm reluc- tant to break. Someone did ask if I just didn't have anything to write about. The answer is: No, there were too many things I wanted to write about and I couldn't pick just one. For example, I wanted to write about the on-going bat- tle over health insurance. It has so many angles. An earli- er column I wrote on the sub- ject was headlined: "A Cataclysmic Battle." What does 'cataclysm' mean? I guess it means the kind of bat- tle that is going on about healthcare. At the time I thought the word - which derives from 'catacysism' -- was overstating the case but now I think it may have been understating it. The furor is more than I expected. What's it really about? Money, I suppose. No one is actually against health care, it's just a matter of what it costs, and who eventually pays the bill... I ALSO wanted to write what "government" really means. I wish people would be more specific when they say they want "smaller" govern- ment. Do they mean they want fewer police on the streets and the roads; fewer teachers in the schools; fewerpostal deliv- eries; fewer garbage collec- tions in the urban areas ? Those are all government functions and money is very tight for local and state governments. I heard one Georgia leg- islative leader say "there is no choice this year but to cut teachers' salaries."Well, there is one other choice: Raise rev- enues, which is to say taxes, but that's the solution that dare not be mentioned. At the national level, my favorite radio talk show hosts want "smaller" government, but smart as they are they are less than specific. Do they mean a smaller army, fewer weapons systems; withdraw- al from Afghanistan and Iraq? No, they actually say the U.S. is not doing enough in those countries and should send more troops~ They also oppose cutting any weapons systems, no matter how outdated, Obso- lete or expensive. Perhaps they would like to see social security payments reduced. Or less money spent on agricultural subsidies, or medicare payments to doctors and hospitals reduced. But apparently not, both of Georgia's U.S. senators voted against any of these cuts. They just want "smaller gov- ernment." I ALSO wanted to write about a seminar I attended last week on the future of news- papers. A friend of many years pointed out that the average age of newspaper readers today is 60. ,Every time some- one dies newspapers lose a reader that won't be replaced," he said. He was mainly referring to newspapers in large cities but those statistics are scary. I'm not sure what the average age of readers of these news- papers are. I do know that peo- ple, young and old, are still [I excited about having the ir pic- ture in the paper, or an item about them. I mentioned at the semi- nar that the vast majority of newspapers would run more pages of advertising this week than ,they did 20 years ago. The advertising is just in a dif- ferent form. They are called "inserts" or "preprints" but they are still ads on paper and in the paper, and businesses thought enough of newspa- pers to put their message in them, one way or another. There may not be as many classifieds, or run-of-the- paper ads, as we call them, but there's plenty of ads in the form of inserts, which aren't on the internet. I ALSO wanted to write about the quality and quanti- ty of the local columnists our newspapers carry;, such as Johnny Kuykendall, Andy Kober, Pa~McCorvey, Joey Loudermilk, Pam Avery, Elisha McDaniel (a recent addition with a lot of promise), Bob Tribble,who's been writ- ing nearly as long as I have; Jeanne Koone, and some oth- ers I might have missed. I see a lot of weekly newspapers each week and and none of them has such an impressive lineup of local columnists. AND AS an old sports- writer, I wanted to write about Georgia's loss to Kentucky in football on Saturday, Nov. 21. In my many years of follow- ing Georgia football, that loss has to be among the five most painful. Georgia was the better, bigger, faster .team, was play- ing before a home crowd, had beaten Auburn the week before and had the chance to make a bad season into a good one. And of course, Georgia dominated the game into the fourth quarter, when sudden- ly Kentucky leaped ahead 34 to 27. Still, you never had the feel- ing Georgia could lose this one, and sure enough, withaminute to play Georgia had a third down and one foot to go for a tying touchdown. Caleb King has finally come into his own as a college runner, especially on the goal line - so inexplicably Georgia called a toss play to freshman Washaun Ealey, admittedly a rising star, but still a freshman. The resulting fumble was recovered by Kentucky, and the game was lost. Ealey was- n't to blame. He was as sur- prised as everyone that the ball was tossed instead of handed to him. That was painful .... More painful than a blowout to Florida; more painful than los- ing to Tech in 2008; more painful than losing to LSU on a bogus penalty. Oh well, Kentucky hadn't beaten Georgia in Athens since 1977, when Britain's Prince Charles was at the game. Maybe they were due. (Georgia's upset of Georgia Tech eased the pain, but that loss to Kentucky still haunts.) THE HARMS Cotn~rY JOU~AL is published weekly by the Star-Mercury Publishing Company, a division of Grimes Publications, at 112 North College Street_ (P.O. Box 75) Hamilton. Ga., 31811. USPS 235-960. Periodical postage paid at Hamilton Post Office, Hamilton. Ga. 31811. FoR SL~SCR1FrIONS call (706) 846- 3188 or write to Circulation Manager, Star Mercury Publications, P. O. Box 75. Hamilton, Georgia 31811. Subscription rates by mail: $20 in Meriwether, Harris or Troup Counties: $26 a year elsewhere. Prices include all sales taxes. P0STMnSr~: Send address changes to P. 0. Box 75. Hamilton. Georgia 31811. What a Wonderful Thanksgiving! For the first time in sev- eral years, all my kids and grandchildren were home for Thanksgiving. To say it was a wonderful Thanksgiving would be an understatement. There was only one family member missing this year, and that made me a little sad. The only person missing was my son-in-law Travis, he is currently in Iraq and will be there for another year. He was missed by all of us and remains in our prayers, along with all the men and women that are serving our country. When I give thanks each year, for all the Lord has blessed me with, having a won- derful family is always at the top of my list. A wise man once told me that a man should pri- oritize his life and remember to always put God first, fami- ly second and career third. It took me a lot of years to real- ize that no wiser words have ever been said to me. I've always felt that I've kept things in priority, but dur- ing the time that I was raising my children, work seemed to always be one of the most important things. I'm sure every father knows what I'm saying. It is difficult some- times to keep a roof over the family's head, clothes on their backs and shoes on their feet, let alone finding money for the . extra things. MY children were growing up, I always tried to find time to do things with them. I spent a great deal of time on the baseball and foot- ball field with my son, Brannon. Bethany was a dif- ferent story. Bethany played softball and was a cheerleader, but sometimes it was difficult to find things to do with her that a father and daughter could share. As she grew older howev- er, we became much closer and spend more time together. Of course, both of them got married, moved away and that makes spending time with them difficult sometimes. However, even w~en my chil- dren and grandchildren are hundreds of miles away, they are still in my mind and on my heart. I try to call them at least once or twice a week and visit as often as possible. Distance makes that difficult some- times, but not impossible. There is not a day that goes by that I do not think of them, pray for them and wish I could be with them. WHEN I heard that both my children and all the grand- children were going to be home for Thanksgiving, I can't tell you how I felt. To have them all together at one time is a real treat and an opportunity to make memorie s that will last each of us a lifetime. Just being able to have them all around the dinner table, to talk about things going on in their lives and the lives of my grandchildren was the :.: ...::.. :.::...::. ::..-.: -..:.: ::~ :::.:::: :'$~:::v:~:: ~:~::.~:~ ~:~$~:~::.:-: ~ ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ~: :~:~:~:?~:~:~: i!i!! ii!il Ji:i!i! iii!iiii:iii!ii iiiiiiiiii iiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!!ii greatest gift that God could have given me. I'm so thank- ful that he has watched over my family, kept them safe and continues to bless them. I hope that each of you had a Thanksgiving that was as wonderful as mine and that God has kept you~ family this year and blessed them as he has mine. I REA/.JZE that some peo- ple did not have such a won- derful Thanksgiving. I've lost several friends and family members this year and under- stand how difficult it is for a family after a loss. My father passed away only a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving when I was 15 and to this day, every year at Thanksgiving I can't help but remember that Thanksgiving and what a sad and difficult time it was at our house. My heart and my prayers go out to those that have lost family members this year. I wish there were words I could write to bring comfort to them, but there isn't. The only thing that is going to help ease the pain is time. WITH THANKSGIVING behind us. We will all begin to think about Christmas and that makes me a little sad. My daughter will be home for Christmas this year, but Brannon and his family will not be able to come home and of course, Pawpaw is going to miss them greatly. I've always been a firm believer that holidays are for sharing with family and friends, but we can't always spend the holidays together. That is why it is so important, when you can spend time with family and friends to do so. As I mentioned, I lost my father at age 15 anda few years later my mother passed away. I lost my sister last year and now there is only me left to" remember. With everyone gone, there is no one to sit down and con- verse with and share memo- ries of the family during my childhood. However, I do have those memories and cherish them greatly. With as much time as I spent with my mother, father and sister, I can't tell you how many times I've wished that I had spent moretime withthem to make even more memories. So, I encourage each of you to spend time this holiday sea- son making memories with family and friends. One day you will cherish those memo- ries more than you will ever know. Still Looking for Answers About Daddy Some years ago, my step- brother, Bob Hanson,became Ludlow Porch. He is Atlanta's favorite radio talk-show host. He is a sought-after speaker. He is the author of four hilarious books. I write a,syndieated news-, paper~flumn in which I at least attempt to be humorous. I've spent a lot of time behind an after-dinner dais myself. This is my eighth book. We both are still stealing Daddy's material. We both owe him dearly for the success we have had in our carreers. He inspired our brand of humor. We both know that and accept that and are proud of the influence he has had upon US. Bob Ludlow has said it often: "Wouldn't it be wonder- ful if we had him? Wouldn't he be proud of us? I wish my daddy could read one of my columns. Hear me make my speechs. Listen to the inflections of my voice in which I imitate him. I wish he could read this book. It says what I did not know how to say to him when he was alive. I ONCE received a letter from a woman in Kentucky who said Daddy had coached her son in basketball at Fort Benning. She said he had been very kind to her son and that he and the team once had stayed at her house on the road trip to play a team from a Kentucky post. '"We brought in cots for the boys m sleep. How they loved your father. He was so nice to our son. He borrowed $300 from my husband before he left. We never got it back, but we wanted him to have it for what .he did ,for our boy." That's my daddy. I was doing a book auto- graphing in Birmingham once., A man came up to me and took my hand and held it tight- ly. He said. "They last time I saw your daddy, we were fight- in' "Krauts in Belgium." A FEW years later, I was on a boat taking a cruise down the Rhine River through Germany. Several veterans were on the boat, returning to see what they had left as service men in 1945. There was a one-armed Texan who was shot down dur- ing an air raid over Germany. There was a Canadian who drove a tank from Normandy to Berlin. We were at a table in the ship's bar one night. The Texan and the Canadian told their stories. ! told my father's. I told how the war had left him. How I held it to blame for ruining his life and, eventually, for killing him. There was an old German at our table. He spokeonly a lit- fie English. He had said he had once been held prisoner by the Americans during the war and that they had treated him well. When he heard my father's story, when he saw my tears, he put his arms around me and said, "Forgive. Your must for- give." I never answered. I SEE my father in myself more than I do anywhere else, however. Some of my friends have said they worry about the fact I often emulate him. They saythey donot want to see me come to the same end as my father. I don't think I will go that far. I have three marriages behind me, but I do not want to know the pain he tried to wash down in all those binders. THIS BOOK is on its third typewriter. The "E" character came off the first typewriter I used. The ribbon stopped retun- ing on another..That is some- thing I believe in, typewriters. I didn't write one line of this book on one of those word processor gizmos. A man should not write the story of his daddy on anything that has to be plugged in. I wonder what this book will bring about. I have a feeling it will bring contact from a lot of other people who were some- - how touched by my dadd~. Please know, however, I am not responsible for any of his long-standing debts. Like Bob asked the man in Birmingham, how long did you know the Major before you allowed him into your wallet? I may even get some answers from this book. There may be somebody out there who knows what demon got hold of Lewis McDonald Grizzard, Sr., and will tell me. If that be the case, fine. There is no transgression for which I will not forgive him. None. As I said earlier, I have already thought the unthink- able... ...to be continued next week BY SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT WITH HIS WIDOW. DEDRA, THE JOURNAL IS CARRYING SELECTED COLUMNS BY THE LATE LEWIS GRIZZARD, WHO GREW UP IN NEAR- BY MORELAND, AND BECAME THE MOST WIDELY READ GEORGIA WRITER OF HIS TIME. GRIZZARD'S BOOKS AND TAPES ARE STILL AVAIL- ABLE FOR SALE THROUGH BAD BOOT PRODUCTIONS, P.O. BOX 191266, ATLANTA, GA 31118-1266. arris County Compiled by John Kuykendall C. Wilson, seaman, USN, son of Mr. and Mrs. CHIPLEY WINS SECOND IN CONTEST - The top story in the Dec. 1,1949 Harris County Jouma/was good news about Chipley, known today as Pine Mountain. "All of Harris County cheered this week when progressive Chi pley was awarded the $750 prize in the Georgia Power Company's hometown improvment contest. This thriving, progressive mun=cipal- ity has been on the upsurge for the pst four or five years, procuring industry, fighting out a problem for ~ecreational facilities, and in gereral,, being very much on the ball. The $750 win is just another event in chipley's yearly deeds of achieveme at." HAMILTON SEAMAN COMMENDED BY ADMIMRAL SHERMON - It's always nice to know that the military personnel from Harris County are doing well, and even 60 years ago The Jouma/was reporting the good news about those that serve our county. "James W.O. Wilson of Hamilton, has received a com- mendation from Admiral Forrest P. Shermon USN, newly appointed Chief of Naval Operation, who was Commander of the Sixth Task Fleet to which the Navy man's ship, the cargo attack ship USS Algol, is attached. ACTIVE RED CROSS - The American Red Gross chapter of Harris Gounty has always been active, and that held true 60 years ago. n front page story, The Jouma/reported, "The executive~committee of the Harris Gounty Red Cross chapter voted Tuesday night to institute a Blood program in the coun- ty. Officers were also appointed including: Mrs. J.P. Williams of Chipley was reappoint- ed Home Service Chairman; Judge J.B. Peavy of Hamilton was reappointed chair- man of the Disaster Gommittee and Mrs. Fletcher Chapman of Chipley was appoint- ed chairman of the Volunteer Services Committee.