Columns

There’s nothing like the holiday season to remind us of the warmth and richness of family traditions. For me, though, some of the very best ones are born out of silly and unpredictable happenstance, because they always make for the best stories.

People are slipping through the cracks because of a myth about who the poor people really are.

If I had to capture the past year in one word, it would be “versus.” Political views, economic strategy, public health measures, environmental policy – from issues monumental to minute, it seems like there is almost nothing that we can agree on. And it. Is. Exhausting.

There are times when you are confronted with the reality that there are eminently accomplished friends and neighbors right under your nose. They might not have become a governor or a senator. They might not have won a PGA golf tournament or scored a critical touchdown for the Bulldogs in a b…

When you start to read this, you will think that I am talking about the Rome Speedway. No, I am writing about the car races, foot races and all other kinds that come from being a police officer. They can occur at any time of the day or night and I have been involved in all of them.

I thoroughly enjoyed Thanksgiving last week. Time spent with the grandchildren is pure joy. I want to maintain a spirit of joy and gratitude, particularly as we continue to deal with the pandemic. More about that later. But first, a transition …

Seven hours to cover 250 miles. That’s how long the roundtrip drive took us from our Macon County chicken farm to my mom’s now-regular appointment at Emory University Hospital. As Vietnamese refugees, my parents aren’t strangers to long journeys. They moved to Georgia to pursue the American …

Occasionally, I find myself believing I can do anything regardless of ability or talent. So, in other words, I probably think too highly of myself. My brain is sometimes fooled by lofty dreams.

“When I was young, I’d listen to the radio, waitin’ for my favorite song …” – Karen Carpenter

Once again, we shine the spotlight on subpar spelling and grammar, lifted directly from the pages of Facebook and other social media sites. As always, some of these will make you laugh. Others might make you cry.

I’m watching ABC Nightly News with tears in my eyes. The story is showing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic here in America by focusing on a hospital in Oklahoma that is near its breaking point.

So we’ve cleared Thanksgiving and have rounded the corner towards Christmas. If Thanksgiving was a bit of a downer given this COVID-19 stuff, just wait until Christmas.

In the year of Covid, I miss those four walls called church. Imagine my delight when, taking respite up on the mountain, N. and I heard music across the street at the church.

“May he not come suddenly and find you sleeping.” Hearing this in Scripture at this beginning of the Season of Advent, the new Church Year, it will come as no surprise to hear me say that this theme can also pertain to our spiritual lives. We are asked to consider whether we are “awake” or “…

If this blasted pandemic has taught us anything it’s that we miss physical contact when it is denied. Screens and video chats just don’t do us justice. We need to be in the company of other humans.

I can’t help it, I’m a sucker for the sappiness of this time of year!

I’m thankful for the voice of Kate Smith, singing “God Bless America.” What a great American she was! Her signature contribution for being a great American was, perhaps, making the military men and women aware of her appreciation for their service to our country. Pause as you read this and v…

Thanksgiving brings back memories of an early incident that happened to me on the Police Department. This was in the early 1960s, on East First Street at the underpass. At that time there was no tunnel for people to walk though. They had to get out in the street and walk under the low overpass.

Our nation is hurting. We could not have anticipated the tumultuous events experienced in 2020. A pandemic which killed a lot of people, shut down our economy, and turned our lives upside down. America now has more unemployed people than it did during the Great Depression. Many Americans rem…

When Thanksgiving Day comes to close this year, at midnight on Nov. 26, there will be 35 days left in 2020 – and if you’re like many people, you probably can’t wait for this year to end. Indeed, 2020 has been “extra” and then some, and whenever you thought you might be able to pause and catc…

I want to echo Severo Avila’s thoughts shared in his Nov. 10 column in the Rome News-Tribune. We should light up our neighborhoods and the skies over Rome like never before this Christmas. I, too, am challenging all of us during this sacred season to light it up!

Is your Thanksgiving turkey smaller this year because of fewer guests at your table? Are your holiday dreams lacking sparkle? And why does Rudolph’s nose appear dimmer? The answer is simple; it is, after all, still 2020!

This past weekend I attended a wedding in Lindale and the highlight was a beautiful reception at the Lindale Mill.

I believe it is not who is in the White House that is going to make the difference we need.

Summers in Orangeburg were torrid. Situated in a geographic line between Florence, S.C. and Augusta, Ga., the big “O” sits in the middle of what is known as the sand hills. Normal days in July and August customarily reach 100 degrees with 100% humidity.

A couple of weeks ago in this space, I offered my services for spell-checking signs at roadside food stands.

Since 2018 when Twin Pines Minerals, LLC, first proposed mining for titanium along Trail Ridge adjacent to the Okefenokee Swamp, advocates from across the nation called on science to inform federal and state decisions about the proposal.

The jury is still out for me as to whether the day the word “friend” became a verb was a good day, or not.

When talking with Vietnam veteran Jerome Sams about his experience in the Navy, I could detect hurt and disappointment. I asked him, “What is it that you would like for us civilians to know?”

As I stated in a previous story, I have written about everything that held a memory for me. Some were good and some were bad, but most of them are on paper.This story happens back in the early ’40s. It was close to Christmas and the weather had been bad for almost a month. Working at constru…

On Aug. 15, 1855, John Asbury Terrell married Asenath Elizabeth Patience Priscilla Leake in Cassville, Georgia. They were my paternal great-great grandparents.

At long last, there is a projected winner of this year’s presidential election. Most voters I’ve talked to feel wrung out, exhausted from the suspense of an unusually drawn-out process. There’s an underlying tone of anxiety.

So I was at my doctor’s office last evening and he knowingly asked me “How was I doing?” I responded with, “Well, I am certainly not depressed during this COVID time, but I am often very disappointed.” He nodded and smiled.

On Friday, the 13th day of November 2020, someone famously sarcastically exclaimed, “What could possibly go wrong?” Even though it elicited laughter, the truth is, most of us recognized we might want to avoid stepping on cracks in the sidewalk, breaking any mirrors, or walking under ladders.

I stumbled across a discussion on social media the other day regarding a topic I had never given much thought to.

When I think on the word “thrive,” the vision that comes to mind is that of a vibrant garden where plants grow healthy and strong. The dictionary defines thrive as a “child, animal, or plant growing or developing well or vigorously”; “to prosper or flourish.” Children and families deserve to…

It looks to me like this weekend may be your last best opportunity to get out and enjoy the fall colors across North Georgia. During a walk through Ridge Ferry Park Thursday morning some of the colors were really vivid, though I suspect color at some of the higher elevations might be a bit p…

I was on the couch, chewing on a straw, watching that redundant, annoying Hulu commercial with Scott Van Pelt, when my youngest son approached my throne.

I lit up when President Trump stated that he was contemplating having the 2020 Republican National Convention at the same place Lincoln delivered one of the greatest speeches of all times.

SAVANNAH – The first trip off the farm where I grew up in Middle Georgia came when I was of preschool age and joined a group of rural folks in Johnson County for a day trip to Tybee “to see the ocean.”

I have been asked by readers of my books and columns in the Rome News-Tribune, “Do you believe in ghosts?” That is a good question that deserves a good answer.