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Opinion articles for Screven County and surrounding areas.

When ‘old’ becomes ‘new’ again

Like you, my family spent the now weeks-ago holidays doing, well, “holiday things.”
No matter if you morph into a modified jolly ole elf or you instead bury yourself underneath countless bed covers for the holidays, each of you have your own set of holiday things. Some of those things are kind of nice, while others equal the pain a person has from drinking broken glass.

Advice to guys who’ll soon be fathers: Watch Mother all the time

As I sit here with my coffee, protected from the cold and snow that, as expected, caused a run on bread and milk at the stores, secure in the warm conviction that I have learned a little something from life’s mistakes, I have decided to write an advice column. And, being the father of two daughters and grandfather of three girls and one boy, I can’t think of a better place to start than fatherhood.

Heaping truckloads of stuff will happen in 2010, but NOT these things

One of the worst introductions to any event announcement is “It’s that time of the year again.” So to change it up for you, the readers, I will roll out a diatribe of alternatives for the conclusion of a calendar year and the beginning of a new.
“It’s time to boogie woogie.” “It’s time wear a lampshade on your head and forget who you are.” “It’s time to sleep and not peek from under the sheets until 2010.” “It’s time to stomp that 2009 year silly and get on to a better economy.”

Don’t let words get in the way of doing what’s right

Sometimes responsibilities back on the homefront provide you with too many opportunities to think. Too, too many chances while shuffling around boxes of books, toys and whoosie-whatsies.
My family is moving from its Maui villa to a Swiss Alps chalet. For those unacquainted with such transference of valuables, the Autrys are in the process of moving from Singleton Avenue to North Main Street.

‘If I were (blank), I would be thankful ...’

As each of you took a moment in your own ways Thursday to give thanks for the past, present and future, I hope you – even during these tedious of times – realize that your blessings are many. We must keep our heads held high and we will weather the recessional storm together as a unified community.
Although the economy sputters and employment opportunities are few and far between, a song keeps popping into my head – “We Shall Overcome.”

City of Sylvania, please use this opportunity wisely

It is not many times in life you have the opportunity to redo something without penalty, like a mulligan in golf, if you will.
The Sylvania city council has such a chance at a mulligan, one for a course of policy, not a golf course. If another need for a “do-over” arises for the council on the correct procedure to rezone property, however, it assuredly will not be without penalty.

Fixing our health care system will take more than this

Late Saturday night, the House of Representatives voted on H.R. 3962, the “Affordable Health Care for America Act.” Health care reform is one of the most critical issues facing this nation right now, and fixing the problem in a way that is sustainable over the long haul has to be one of our top priorities. I don’t think the bill that was before us does a good enough job of reaching that goal, and that’s why I couldn’t support it.

‘Billybob, pick up a loaf of bread, a gallon of milk and getcha a casket fer yourself’

During a blazing hot summer in Chicago, Al Bundy ran into a problem. He had no money – a weekly occurrence for Al. His shortage of funds meant he couldn’t afford to purchase a new air conditioner in an episode of the now-syndicated sitcom “Married With Children.”
The intense heat inside his house prompted the shoe salesman to move his family of dysfunctionals into a local supermarket.

City council members, a ‘yes’ vote to rezoning would violate your own comprehensive plan

The answer already has written out and housed in their hearts.
In this case, however, the Sylvania City Council looks destined to be on a path not to follow either in its decision on the rezoning of South Main Street properties from residential to professional.
Look around. Sylvania and Screven County are entrenched in history, so much for certain issues that it seems to be its only basis for existence.

School uniform policy not sewn together overnight

The Screven County school board announced in its September monthly meeting that a school uniform policy would be established for the 2010-2011 year.
Parents of school-aged children from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade received a survey to fill out Oct. 15 with the students’ report cards. It gave multiple apparel options and then asked for comments.
Some in the public agree with the dress code change, while others do not. Valid concerns can be and have been made on both sides of what has become a vocally controversial subject.

Banging your head doesn’t solve problems, but rhythmically smacking a fence with drum sticks works

Gaining an education during my early years, I suffered like most of my classmates with those pesky boogers.
Before you get some sick, queasy notion in your noggin that this is a reference to nostril humor, those “boogers” in question were mathematical word problems. Educated as a lad in Georgia back prior to No Child Left Behind, standardized testing means everything, and math pieces-parts mashed together into a form of learning that mirrors how the Japanese count on their fingers and toes, I and my classmates in my hometown of Rome, Ga., struggled with math word problems.

Lucky for us, some people just have a special talent of being themselves

Some of you out there firmly believe you are something special. Yep, in your eyes you’ve got it truly going on. One bad mamma jamma, so to speak.
And you just may be right.
As for me, I’m special because I have two offices.
I know. I know. You are reading this and saying “Enoch, what’s so great about having a second office? Doesn’t that mean you just have more work to do?”
Not exactly.
My second office isn’t an office in the literal sense. It is located at my residence. This office rather is a place to rest my keister on a couch in front of a television.

Awareness getting attention (good & bad)

The norm just doesn’t do it.
The Sylvania Telephone newspaper you are reading confirms that point. This paper, as you are well aware, is pink for a purpose.
Logic, at least to some, these days says Canadian television viewers need more than just a subtle dose of reality.
October is “Breast Cancer Awareness Month.” But an advertising agency above the border chose to get an early start – and a controversial one -- on the campaign.

Thinking about my other life’s calling makes my mouth water

I have my favorites. You assuredly do too.
When I have a moment away from my busy duties as the editor, photographer, writer, layout wizard, humanitarian, public relations guru, team motivator, community motivator, family guy and all-around good dude, I prop my weary eyes open with sturdy toothpicks and park myself in front of a television for a couple minutes of boob tube viewing.

Some people always are in the fog

Like most of you, I receive a deluge of e-mails from people I don’t know and judging by the electronically dispersed “gift” of information, they don’t have a clue who I am either.

However, unlike most of you, the people who teleport materials to me usually want me to print thousands of copies of their propaganda.


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