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Columns

  • Reality show freaks make the rest of us feel like neat freaks

    When it comes to spring cleaning and scrubbing and organizing my domain, I’d rather be chilling out watching “Hoarders.”

    It’s another one of those ingenious reality shows, airing several times on Monday nights on A&E TV, that can make us feel really special and good about ourselves.

    I mean, how can my cluttered little corner of the world compare to Barbara, who “trolls for stuff in alleyways and dumpsters,” to add to the hoarding pile in her million-dollar home where “neighbors look on in disgust”?

  • This laundry tip is for the birds

    In my last column, I mentioned my laundry was piling up; so was my housework because it is the time of year when I can’t think of spending a waking moment anywhere else other than the beach.

    The powers that be must have seen my mounting pile of laundry and decided to give me a rainy Saturday where I didn’t feel the pull to be outside.

    When I awoke I knew immediately from the pitter-patter sounds on my windowsill that I would not be spending a lazy day on the beach soaking in the sun, searching for sea treasures and walking the shoreline.

  • It’s POTUS v. SCOTUS on Marbury v. Madison and judicial review

    Oh-Bama, what a thing to say!

    Turns out our president—you know the Harvard Law-educated, self-proclaimed constitutional scholar—has some, er, misgivings about the Supreme Court and its role in shaping law.

    I guess Barack Obama missed the day Harvard law professors went over Marbury v. Madison, which was mostly likely the first year, if not the first week of law school.

  • One-cup coffeemaker a hot commodity—for manufacturer

    When I heard about a new kind of coffeemaker that brews java one cup at a time, I thought it was a step backward in the wrong direction.

    I mean, it took American pioneers (and me) centuries just to advance to a Mr. Coffee 12-cup drip-maker.

    But as most morning caffeinated drinkers probably know by now, one-cup brewers are hot stuff these days. Just select your favorite flavor, conveniently packaged in miniature “K Cup” pods that are also trendy—and pricey, ranking right up there with a stop at Starbucks.

  • Friends don’t let friends fight cancer alone: Local deputy battles cancer out West

    If you’ve never had a family member, friend or loved one who has been diagnosed with cancer, you’re either very, very lucky or you’re a liar.

    I remember back when I was in high school, cancer was something that your friend’s neighbor’s uncle had. It seemed so foreign.

    Then, when I got to college, it was something that happened to my friends’ mothers. It began to get more real.

    Year after year, it kept hitting closer to home until, last year, bam, like a smack upside the head, it did hit home.

  • Real estate agents grateful for workers who gave a hoot

    Local real estate agent Pam Allen was frantic—could or would anyone help her with her latest mission to rescue a baby owl that had fallen from its nest?
    Allen’s clients first noticed the little owl, covered in fine white down, resting on the ground under a tall pine tree last week near property she had been showing them on Waterway Drive in Sunset Beach. The baby apparently had fallen out of its nest in the tree about 30 feet overhead.

  • Reasearcing can be a maze

    In my nearly decade as a journalist, the Beacon is the first newspaper I’ve ever worked for that celebrated the week designated to shining light on public records.

    Last year was my first Sunshine Week and I was thrust into the mix of it without a full understanding of what it was or why we were doing it.

    I admit I was confused as to why a weekly newspaper would commit so much precious print space to explaining the process of obtaining public records. I figured if people wanted to obtain a record they would figure it out or go online.

  • There’s nothing like beating a dead horse to celebrate Sunshine Week, First Amendment

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

    No finer words have since been written, and I doubt they ever will.

    There’s a reason our founding fathers made this particular amendment the First Amendment.

    It is for what American men and women have fought and died for more than 230 years.

  • Sunset Beach seeks professional help to offset crazy island parking

    With March roaring across the 2012 calendar like a lion, and a new, warmer-weather season fast approaching (we hope), Sunset Beach has opted to get professional help and guidance for future seasonal parking on the island.

    Maybe that will help alleviate any parking zaniness, for example when beach visitors are frantically trying to find “space” in the heat of the summer rush like, say, on the Fourth of July.

  • Far from over, GOP presidential battle important part of vetting process

    On the morning of the Michigan and Arizona Republican primaries I was making my rounds through the morning political shows, hoping to catch up on the political news of the day after being in the vacuum of a first-degree murder trial for the past week.

    While watching an a.m. show “brewed by Starbucks,” NBC Chief Political Correspondent Chuck Todd and some of his liberal lemmings were salivating, and I mean salivating, at the idea of Mitt Romney losing his home state of Michigan on Tuesday.