I enjoy my bicycle. There's nothing like the freedom of rolling through the countryside propelled only by the power of my own legs, feeling the warm sun on my skin and the cool wind moving over my body, engaging the world with all five of my senses.
When protesters boarded three ships under the dark of night on the evening of Dec. 16, 1773 to toss 90,000 pounds of tea into Boston Harbor, it sparked an event only later popularized as the "Boston Tea Party."
For every dollar you or I spend shopping in Newton County, we toss a penny into the jar (figuratively) for Newton County schools. Every visitor to our county does the same. We've been doing it since 1999, and come March 19, we'll decide if we want to continue that practice through 2019.
When you visit a casino in Las Vegas, Atlantic City, or Biloxi, you say you're going gambling. That's not what the casino operators call it, though. They're not in the gambling business; it's the gaming industry. They provide entertainment.
As someone who exchanges ideas and discusses opinions through social media, writing a printed newspaper column feels a bit odd. I'm used to the back-and-forth interaction I experience online or in person. Dialogue is a vital exercise where I learn from different perspectives. Forced to explain myself, it sharpens, clarifies and sometimes causes me to challenge my own thinking.
Last week was bad - or so it seemed then. Work days were jam-packed with stressful moments, evenings were too short, nights were sleepless, and I could never catch my balance or my breath. Even finding time to write a column was a chore.
It was front page news last summer when Chick-fil-A restaurants across America became the flashpoint for one of our nation's most divisive issues. Following statements by the restaurant chain's President, Dan Cathy, opposing same sex marriage, gay rights groups organized a nationwide boycott. To counter, conservatives opposed to same-sex marriage flooded the nearest Chick-fil-A to make a statement. It got ugly.
Scanning my office bookshelves these days is a trip down Irony Lane - especially when I glance through the cycling section. There's Lance Armstrong's 2001 autobiography, "It's Not About the Bike." Lance, after your long overdue confession to Oprah regarding performance-enhancing drug use and blood doping, we know it was about a lot more than the bike. There's also his 2003 follow up, "Every Second Counts," which cries out for a subtitle such as "And I'll Do Anything to Get Them."
On a sun-filled day in the summer of 1964, an excited boy of 4.5 dances around massive marble columns flanking the top step of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington. Scattered below, tourists mix and mingle on the concrete expanse between the memorial and the reflecting pool stretching to the Washington Monument in the distance.
When we struggle as a nation to find common ground - or even respectful dialog - on anything, the last thing we need is exaggeration and deliberately inflammatory language in discussing the events of the day. We'll always have that from some of the general public, but I expect better from our newspapers. That's why I was disappointed with this newspaper's editorial board for their "Our Thoughts" piece in last Sunday's Covington News titled "Fooled Again."
Criticizing the "fiscal cliff deal" passed by Congress, the editorial referred to the expiration of temporary payroll tax cuts as having money ...
As we careen toward the so-called "fiscal cliff," the collective yawn of Americans speaks volumes about the degree to which we've come to accept the dysfunction and gridlock of our political system in Washington. No one expects bipartisan cooperation to save the day. And, the political players are focused more on deflecting blame and surviving the fall than they are on how to avert it.