Archive for August, 2004

more on our boy Bill

The AJC has posted the indictment text. I would have rather accessed it from a court site, but apparently the Northern District of Georgia court charges $.07 per page downloaded, so thanks, AJC.
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Golf Carts, the new weapons of mass destruction.(And North Georgia too!)

Ok…so the triathlon went swimmingly! The husband finished in 2 hours exactly. Not bad for his very first. However, spending that much time In Peachtree City, only hardened my resolve to move there one day. I mean, who wouldn’t want to wield the power of a golf cart much in the same way one wields the power of a light saber? Some of these people are just nasty! Last time I checked, the pathways that aren’t designated specifically for the carts…..actually allow humans to traverse them! My 5 year old daughter almost lost an arm due to a very patriotic golf cart. Yeah….that’s good times. I really do love PTC. It reminds me of my beloved Hilton Head Island. But there you only have to worry about rogue golf balls…not the carts!
This weekend we are taking the rug rats to north Georgia. For those of you not in the know, all points north in our lovely state have about a bagillion things to offer in the fall. We are headed to Hiawassee. I think this is the order….Jasper, Elijay, East Elijay, Blairville, Blue Ridge, Young Harris, and Hiawassee. Don’t quote me exactly, but I’m pretty sure that is the order of the towns. We always take 75 north to 575 north….YOU NEVER HAVE TO TURN once on 575! Its great, you cannot get lost! There are so many wonderful antique stores….there is an awsome one in Helen..oh yeah, I forgot that one. But everyone knows Helen. Not only is it the most annoying northern town (in my opinion ), but it is also the most frequently visited. But I digress…..Hiawassee is the point of interest today. And why you ask? Because when we have a hankerin’ for authentic Italian food, thats where we head. Actually the resaraunt I am so lovingly speaking of is in Young Harris…but the two towns are only 5 minutes apart. Enricho’s is a marvelous and meticulous example of true Northern Italian cuisine. Though they also prepare all regional specialties. Enricho’s is one of those dining experiences that render you speachless. You could be in the throws of the most intellectually stimulating conversations of your life, but the second you put that heavenly bite in your mouth…..words simply fail you. There is only one slight pitfall. Young Harris is a dry city. But they allow you to bring your own libations…..so do. You just can’t properly enjoy chicken marsala or veal parmasan without a good red wine. And for breakfast you ask?……go to the Country Kitchen. Its actually in North carolina, but just barely. I forget what road it is on. You take a left off 515(which is what 575 becomes) somewhere in Hiawassee. Tell you what….give me a call if you want to go. I’ll just let you follow me!
For those who don’t wish to trek all the way up to north georgia….Paces Academy will be having their Fall Festival very soon. Paces is a wonderful private school on Paces Ferry Rd. Just down the road from The Guvna! They always have great activities for the kiddies! Hands down, the best private school your money can buy….but we are still on the wait list….perhaps my shameless plug will move us up the list a touch? Probably not.

Get Yer Opera On.

The following restaurants participate in the Capitol City Opera’s Dinner and a Diva series of concerts.

The newest venue is The Roasted Garlic, and if you want to find out what the hell I’m all about when I blabber on about singing, then on Tuesday, September 28 of the upcoming month you can come see me participating in an Italian Opera Gala with some of Atlanta’s finest locally-based opera singers. I’ll be singing arias from Puccini’s greatest operas-Tosca, La Boheme, and Turandot (the aria Nessun Dorma-Pavarotti actually put this one on the pop charts briefly in Europe.), and maybe an ensemble or two from Verdi and Puccini’s greatest hits as well.

To find out whether you need reservations or not, costs, click on any of the links I’ve given you above, including Capitol City Opera-they have a link to the Dinner With a Diva series which gives performance dates, you name it. The restaurant links either bring you to the restaurant’s website or a site with it’s info-phone numbers, etc.

So far I’ve only had the pleasure of singing at Petite Auberge, and I can tell you the food there is always surpassingly good. The most recent performance I had a steak oskar that was so tender and succulent I could cut it with the side of my fork.

I’m promoting this here in part because I truly believe it’s a really good way to get acquainted with opera up close and personal, and I am automatically predisposed to like these places for taking the chance-opera can be an acquired taste. If you’re accustomed to singers in the genre sometimes called “alternative classical”-Josh Groban, Charlotte Church, even-in my opinion-Andrea Bocelli, then hearing opera singers who have truly developed their voices to be heard unaided over 80-piece orchestras can be a very different experience. Some people find it thrilling, others are unnerved. I tend to believe for most it’s the former rather than the latter.

For my fellow metrobloggers, if you’re so inclined, it’d be a good way to say hi before we even have an official meetup-I’ll keep everyone posted as to when the next one after the 28th comes-I think it will be October 19th at Petite Auberge, and it looks like it will be all German opera-Wagner, etc. Since I’m a heldentenor-german for heroic tenor, american for “that’s the loudest damn tenor I’ve ever heard,” it looks like I’ll definitely be in on that one, too.

I promote it also because, well, why lie? I’m often performing there. It’s really usually Dinner and a Diva and a Divo.

And I whip it, I whip it good.

Trolley Around Atlanta

I was reading an article, which was posted on the AJC the first of August, about the Trolley Project that would place new trolley lines up and down Peachtree Street. I was also talking to a buddy of mine about it and he said the real plan is to take the unused rail track, that is all over this city, and make the trolley line more of a circle. The concept would be to get on a Trolley and basically ride “around” the city stopping to shop, head to a ball game or whatever. If this full project really does happen, it would be wonderful.

Atlanta has so much to offer but, due to traffic and lack of parking space – unless you want to pay $8-$25 bucks a day – it’s a bit of a hassle to enjoy traveling around the city. The cool places are not all in one district and even walking between spots in one district can wear you out.

So, if the city does get a nice little trolley system, even one that just goes up and down Peachtree Street – the main north / south road – it would be way cool.

Reference: | AJC main | AJC article on the trolley system from 8-1-04 | A short history of the Buckhead area |

UPDATE: Thanks to Jessica, I have been set straight. I was thinking about the Belt Line Project that will circle inside the city. Both or one would be cool.

Reference: | Belt Line Project |

The New Week is Here

Well…

My weekend didn’t go as planned, but I did get to catch Hero. I enjoyed the movie, but I also don’t mind subtitles. A couple of people that attended the movie with me Sunday night were caught off guard by this. Anyhow, the story was interesting, but a little redundant. The scenery the movie explored and the vivid use of colors was worth the ticket price.

Can I say the theater at The Mall of Georgia is very nice. Stadium seating with Lazy Boy like seats.

I also watched enough of the VMA’s, hosted 12 hours south of the ATL in Miami (Everybody’s 2nd home), to catch the Kerry daughters getting booed! Kind of funny due to MTV’s political stance.

Bill Campbell does not blow anything…

Yet. But he has been indicted! See here; http://www.ajc.com/metro/content/metro/atlanta/0804/30campbell.html.
If you have issues as I do about having to register to read anything at the AJC, simply go here first: http://www.bugmenot.com.

The first part of the news story reads thusly;

Federal prosecutors in Atlanta today announced that former Mayor Bill Campbell has been indicted on corruption charges.

Campbell was named in a sweeping racketeering indictment that includes wire fraud, mail fraud and illegal campaign contributions, according to an indictment released today….

You will recall Jessica’s recent entry on the subject of the former Mayor’s date of indictment. I am afraid, dear Jessica, there wasn’t even time to start the pool. Damn.

Man, you haven’t lived in a major southern city-Nashville and New Orleans come to mind-until that city has a political scandal.

I doubt they have goats in Federal Prison.

Just. Damn.

WSB radio host and Neal Boortz crony Royal Marshall has a simple saying for comments, news items, whatever leaves him speechless.

“Just. Damn.”

Well, I’m not normally in the habit of parroting anything done or said by a talk-radio host if I can help it, but this story beggars anything else.

In case you’re too lazy to click the link or it’s gone and you are reading this long after I’ve posted it, here’s the most relevant piece of info from the story;

…Police say John Kemper Hutcherson, 21, was driving under the influence of alcohol Saturday night when his truck struck a utility pole. His passenger, Francis Daniel Brohm, was partially ejected. His head was severed by the pole’s support wire, police said.

The dude then went home, the remaining portion of his friend’s body in the passenger seat beside him, parked the car in his driveway in the middle of his suburban Cobb county neighborhood, and went to bed.

A lot of comments come to mind; I ain’t never EVEN been THAT drunk, what the hell did he think had happened, was he, the driver, the ultimate procrastinator, or what-“Well hell, he wuz dead anyhow, so I figgered it wouldn’t hurt nobody if I got a little shut-eye”-but really, the only thing that can be said is, well…just. damn.

Happy Birthday, Internet!

That’s right y’all. The internet turns 35 today.

And my eldest daughter Genevieve is 9 today! Happy birthday, sweetheart!!(Sorry y’all, but it’s one of my babies, I had to.)

But it’s hard for me to not notice, on a personal level, that in just over 2 months I will be two years older than the freaking internet. Ew.


And now for something completely different…you know those tunnels on GA 400? If you live here right now you probably do. As you drive south on 400, about a mile after the toll station, you enter tunnels that run directly under some Buckhead business towers.

It’s purely an observation, but I’ve decided the following things are a bit creepy in this post 9/11 world where these tunnels are concerned-the fact that they have signs posted prominently to let us know the following;

  • You can’t stop there.
  • You can’t honk your horn.

About the second…what the f**k? What the hell good is a tunnel with no aimless, mindless horn-honking? Southern or not, it’s not like Atlanta’s always THAT polite a place to be. One must expect a wee bit of horn honking in a city of 4 million filled with Yankee transplants. Dang y’all, growing up I thought it was a rule that you DID honk your horn in a tunnel.

About the first, I see the point-these tunnels are under some major Buckhead towers. I would hate to see the conniption an abandoned Ryder truck pulled to the side in one of those tunnels might cause.

Then it occurs to me, this is Georgia G****amn 400 we’re talking about. When is there NOT a jam on this lovely stretch of road somewhere. Am I subject to arrest if I’m stuck behind you, because you’re stuck behind them, because….

And then again, maybe I’m just thinking too hard.


On a final, further disjointed note, because this is a very disjointed entry, I must ream the AJC. The lovely and under-appreciated Atlanta Journal Constitution.

Okay, so they’re not under-appreciated. So when they hound you for a subscription via phone and you even pointedly, rudely tell the mindless rep who can barely believe they got broken out of reading their pre-prepared spiel laminated there in front of them that you want to be TAKEN OFF THEIR CALL LIST and they still call, you get a little pissed-so what?

Have you noticed that big white paper band they put around the copies that sell at stores now?

Are you smarter than me? I’m reckoning 99.9% of you will nod yes to this. Because if you knew that little white band is their sneaky way of trying to ensure you buy TWO, count ’em, two of their already ludicrously overpriced Sunday butt-wiping worthy spewings, if you knew that, chief, you are smarter than me.

It took Rufus down at the Kroger out toward Marietta, (forgive me, dude, I’m sure your name wasn’t Rufus,) telling me, “Hey, did you know that was two papers?” to clue me in. Seething at even buying one, I gingerly slid the other out and headed to my car, teeth grinding at the beloved AJC’s passive-aggressive marketing ploy. How many Yuppies in too big a hurry buying their Sunday donuts does the AJC swindle this way on a daily basis? I take that back-they’re really after the shmoes like me who have 3 kids and a wife at home and therefore can never leave the store with less than 4 bags worth of stuff. Many of us in a big enough hurry will grab that big bundle of paper and maybe note that it seems awful heavy, even for the Sunday AJC, but not think about it any further than that. How many unwittingly toss that receipt aside with the extra $2.50 the AJC just conned out of you unnoticed?

Okay.

*Deep breath.*

Thanks again, Rufus. You don’t know how many exotic birds you deprived of good quality paper today.

Sunday shorts…

I can never think of titles for posts… sorry…

  • Bravo Atlanta! I was driving through midtown on my way to Tech and I came across an broken traffic signal. To my utter surprise and delight, every car did the right thing and treated it like a four way stop. No free-loaders or selfish driving going on today!
  • I wish – On the front page of SundayLiving (section M of the AJC Sunday) is a little blurb about how more than 80 percent of singles say they didn’t care about the political affiliation of prospective dates. This is news to me, as I’ve been told, on several occasions, that I am both too conservative and too liberal to date (or be friends with or whatever). Actually, that’s how I know I’m a moderate.
  • 400 – Here’s a quote I saw about it in The Vent : “400 is the only place where you can see the sun rise and set before you get to work.” Heh. I’m so glad I live in the city.

Look Out Maw! It’s the Revenuers!

Man.

Found this piece of beauty via Fark.

Here’s a snipping from the article;

A Rabun County couple faces charges of manufacturing distilled spirits after a moonshine still was discovered on their property Tuesday evening.

A little guide for the non-Georgian-that county name there is pronounced RAY-bun. Don’t you forget it neither, hoss.

I am a native southerner, so I don’t find this nearly as funny as others may. I do, however, definitely find it funny. I just grew up in an area just south of Nashville where some folk still felt it was their god-given right to cook up some home brew every now and then, and the government agents who would inevitably find out and come pokin’ in a body’s business were not a welcome sight.

There’s something so quaint about it too. They weren’t growing ganja, weed, marijuana, they weren’t cooking up some good ole crank to pass out to truckers down at the Giganto Gas n Go. Nope, they’s just makin’ moonshine y’all.

Body’s got to have a livin’ somehow, y’know?

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