Archive for May, 2005

Speaking of IKEA….

How excited was I when I received the following email:


Are you so excited about the first IKEA store opening in Atlanta that you positively can’t WAIT for grand opening day? Would you do almost anything for the chance to be selected among the lucky few Atlanta-area residents who will experience the new store and all its features before everyone else?

IKEA Atlanta and Star 94 are looking for you! Click here and let us know, in 250 words or less, why you deserve the chance to be randomly-selected as one of the five IKEA AMBASSADORS OF “KUL” (Swedish for “fun”) who will live in the IKEA Atlanta store from June 26 through grand opening day on June 29.*

Each of the five randomly-selected IKEA Atlanta Ambassadors of Kul will receive a $2,000 IKEA Gift Card and also help benefit a worthy cause – IKEA Atlanta will match $2,000 for each of the five Ambassadors of Kul to a local non-profit organization.

Did you catch that? LIVE IN THE IKEA STORE FOR 3 DAYS!!!!!!!!!!!!
After my heart stopped palpitating, I was able to regain my composure and attempt to verbalize just how much I would ABSOLUTELY love to be an IAOK!!!!

Wish me luck and … please refrain from clicking THIS link to sign up for the contest yourself. The fewer people, the better chance I have of winning!

Precious and Her Sisters

On November 13 2004, I posted an entry here in the Atlanta Metroblog about one of history’s most inexplicably ignored serial killers, The Atlanta Ripper.

From my own entry:

Between approximately 1909 and 1912 possibly as many as 20 women of color were strangled and then brutally slashed to death. Only one victim of the killer escaped – she described her assailant as a well-dressed African-American man…

The Atlanta Ripper may have killed as many as 20 or more women. I ended the blog entry by listing many of their names, so that they were commemorated to a new century. It is likely far too late for anything like justice for the long-dead victims of the mysterious “well-dressed African-American man” who struck down women of color in the night back in those sepia-toned days, so it seemed at least right to make sure that they were no longer neglected, hidden in the dusty folds of time.

I ended the entry before the list of names with the following:

These women lived in a time and place that didn’t treat their awful deaths with the gravity they deserved because of their skin color. One hopes a similar occurrence today would bring about a very different response from authorities, and a legacy that stays in the public memory with more permanence, like the Atlanta Child Murders some 60+ years later…

“One hopes,” I wrote, thinking that surely multiple murders of any group nowadays would not go unnoticed.

Then I read about Precious Armani.

From an article published in the AJC on the ides of March, 2004 (3/15), by Saeed Ahmed, titled Vigil honors slaying victim:

(Precious) Armani, whose legal name was Samuel Eugene Daily, was a 37-year-old preoperative male-to-female transsexual: She lived full time as a woman but had not undergone surgery to complete her transformation.

She was found slumped in the driver’s seat of a rented white Chevrolet Cavalier parked outside Bennington Towers, a Buckhead high-rise in the 2400 block of Peachtree Road. She had been shot in the head. Police would not say whether there had been a struggle…

Precious was murdered at the beginning of March last year, and the article was about a service in her memory.

The death of Precious Armani, to my knowledge still unsolved, is tragic enough, but the most astonishing part of the article is at the beginning, in the second paragraph — I’ve added emphasis…

Georgia Aquarium set to open November 23rd

You can also learn, from this Paper of Record article on the subject, that 18 aquariums (aquaria?) were built nationwide in the last decade; that the Shedd Aquarium in Chicago is the nation’s oldest and largest; and that Bernie Marcus has, apparently, something to prove:

“When I started interviewing aquarium people, they all came to me with the same thing ó we’re going to open this nice little aquarium, it’s going to be cute, something similar to New Orleans or Chattanooga,” Marcus said in a recent interview. “But I said, ‘You don’t understand what I’m trying to do here. I want something extraordinary. I want something unique.’ ”

There’s likely to be a few big show-stoppers like hammerhead sharks and large octopuses ó one of Marcus’ favorites. But he doesn’t want just one or two specimens of most other fish. For example, paperwork filed with the state Department of Resources indicates that Marcus hopes to lure as many as 5,000 French grunts, 4,000 yellow tail, 3,000 mullet and a whopping 10,000 scad.

Maybe he got bad service at a Chattanooga restaurant once.

I remain skeptical about the future success of the Centennial Park Fish Tank, mainly because it seems so extraneous — there’s a perfectly nice aquarium two hours away, and a perfectly nice IMAX theater over on Clifton Road — and because I don’t hear anyone getting excited about it other than Bernie Marcus, God bless him. Is there a purpose for this aquarium, other than “tourism” and “because Bernie Marcus said so”? Any possibility of tie-ins to research efforts? Any affiliations with groups concerned with the shore or the Chattahoochee? Anyone with an investment in the aquarium once Bernie Marcus is no longer around to swell with pride?

If you’re more interested in counting down the days until the Atlantic Station IKEA opens — yeah, I don’t blame you.

What? Jazz?


Memorial Day Weekend May 28 – 30, 2005 Concert Series at Piedmont Park
KIDZone, Artist Market, and Food Vendors.

Jazz Fest should be great this year. PREPARE yourself for the traffic. My sources say, they are pulling the fence into 10th street tonight so, if they keep it there, you’ll find extra traffic unhappiness.


What? News Streams?

UPDATE: So, he’s down… Is there an insanity plea in this case?

Homicide suspect continues crane standoff. From CBS 46 News.

The best part of the latest “drama in Buckhead” is that you can see a live Internet feed of the video and audio from CBS 46. Well, it’s rather innovative of Channel 46, you have to admit.

However, the best part of the feed is the audio. I just love the random chat of news journalist as they sit and wait for something to happen. Not to mention the people on the street that come too close to the mic. But, hey – if you had to look at this

for hours on end, you’d be punchy too.

Related sites include:

Crane Safety

Crane Safety

Traffic advice

Be sure not to drive home through Buckhead today. Peachtree is closed down.

Review of Braves’ new Mega Screen

After expressing much skepticism about the Braves’ new television screen, I finally had the the opportunity for it to irradiate me in person last night. My employer put us all on the drunk bus and sent us to see Piazza’s wrinkly old T-rex arm allow enough stolen bases to give the Braves’ a 3-0 victory that capped off a home sweep of the Mets.

Since we were there on a corporate package, our seats were in left field. From the outfield seats, the new screen is pretty weak, partly because you’re so close to it, and partly because the viewing angle is so sharp. It looks like the jumbotron at any professional sports facility, only gigantic. After the first few innings, the wife and I met up with some friends who were sitting behind first base (aka – the best seats in the stadium).

still more MARTA thoughts

In his rant against Jim Wooten — as an aside: if Jim Wooten and John Sugg were put together in an airtight container, would we have a perfect vacuum of partisan uselessness? — Tony hit the nail on the head as regards to MARTA, and I’m going to take the liberty of quoting him: . . . MARTA needs people to need MARTA, and right now, people don’t need MARTA.

That’s pretty much the long-term problem in a nutshell. It goes beyond the state-funding issue — not to downplay the state-funding issue, but MARTA getting state funding won’t solve the longer-term problem of what the city ought to look like, and what role MARTA (and, to a lesser extent, planned projects like the streetcar and the Beltline) ought to play in it.

Quickie on the Wilbanks indictment

Pottery Barn is going to sell the crap out of these blankets

First to post about Wilbanks!! HUZZAH!!

In the interest of not merely linking to the AJC article, I will inject my opinion. My opinion is that she should repay all of the costs for the extensive search she caused. If she was going to host a wedding for 600 guests (which is about 575 too many, really), then she can afford to cough up the cheddar she owes Duluth and Gwinnett and Georgia and Me and have a nice little private ceremony in front of a judge. I also think she should spend, like, a week in the pokey for good measure. I understand the seriousness of mental illness and I understand that stress causes people to do zany things they end up regretting, but this line, by Gwinnett DA Danny Porter, says it all:

“There has to be a consequence for lying to the police.”

If Tony Simon caused a few days of anxiety and anguish to the tune of tens of thousands of taxpayer dollars AND lied to the fuzz in the process, Tony Simon would expect to have to write a helluva check and spend, like, at least a week in the pokey. I could argue that extreme duress caused me to take out that student loan, which it did, but that doesn’t make me any less responsible for the debt.

Rivalry is a Beautiful Thing

fallen_tom.jpg“Mets say they have nothing against the city — Peachtree this and Peachtree that.

But they’ll learn. They’ll come to dread the 404 area code and the baseball stadium in it. They’ll learn to hate the city — professionally, if not personally. They’ll come to think of the playing surface of Turner Field as quicksand and the ballpark itself as, in the 1998 words of Mike Piazza, ‘Death Valley for us.’

The personnel changes, the story line changes, the outlook changes, too. But for the Mets in this city, the song remains the same. They play, they come up on the wrong side of the final score. They played Tuesday, they lost Tuesday, 4-0

The Mets’ startling inability to beat the Braves at Turner Field is surpassed, it seems, only by the inability of Tom Glavine to beat the Braves anywhere. Glavine was the losing pitcher Tuesday, defeated for the eighth time in his nine starts against his former team.”*

Go Braves.

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