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Columns

  • Summer heat nothing to swoon at, but sometimes it happens

    Look at me, celebrating the Fourth of July and sunshine in Sunset Beach in red, white and blue just one day after our first (and we hope last) 2014 summer storm, aka Hurricane Arthur, blew up the Carolinas coast.

    Look at me, with my new smartphone pedometer app sauntering up Sunset Beach for a three-mile walk on one of the prettiest beaches God, with a little help from the Gores, ever invented.

  • When is the county’s 250th anniversary party?

    So I hear it’s Brunswick County’s 250th anniversary.

    Well I didn’t hear it but I did read about it — in the Wilmington paper. They seem very excited about Brunswick County’s anniversary over there in New Hanover County.

    I think they think they are going to get cake.

    And if they have enough influence, they will get to decide what flavor it will be.

    I’ve seen that move before, coming from a family with older siblings. That’s a classic move.

  • Busing situation lacks consistency

    In the newsroom we often hear about stories we aren’t involved in covering, but that doesn’t make them any less intriguing.

    This week, that story is the board of education’s decision to switch back to a traditional bussing schedule.

    A surprising twist considering our man with the school system, Sam Hickman, had explained the superintendent intended to switch the high school and elementary route times, but remain on a staggered bus schedule.

  • What is the window on spring cleaning when spring takes its time arriving?

    Did I miss the start of spring?

    Has it actually started yet or are we still in a holding pattern waiting for one more cold snap.

    I ask because although weather.com can show me an 18-hour forecast that appears to include spring-like conditions, I need some assurances.

    So I can start my spring cleaning.

    Or have I missed that as well?

    What is the window for doing your spring cleaning and while I’m asking, do I have to clean the windows for it to count as spring cleaning.

  • Late nights started with ‘Letterman’

    When I was a kid, the family used to do things as a family, meaning if my older sisters had some activity to go to, the parents volunteered and I got stuck going along, too.

    We didn’t bother with babysitters when I was too young to take care of myself. When I was old enough to be left on my own, it meant I was old enough to help out with whatever event we were going to — setting up, breaking down, carrying things to and from the station wagon.

  • A little froggy told me

    I heard the first frog of spring croaking just the other night, and it made me wonder if Brunswick County has its own version of the groundhog.

    I’m not from here so last year was the first time I experienced the chorus of burping that drowned out everything that I was used to hearing on a Brunswick County night.

    I can’t say I’ve adjusted to the sound yet or that I was anticipating it, but this one particular frog had decided it would announce winter was over.

  • Tis the 'tweason' to take stock of what to give up

    We are dwelling in interesting times, and I don’t mean that ironically. At least I don’t think I do.

    I don’t just mean the weather giving us something to talk about — but hasn’t that been interesting? Beach temperatures one cherished, rare winter’s day, then we’re all hunkering down for the big, rare ice storm the next.

  • I hope I didn’t scare you

    I recently had a town official tell me that they thought a story I wrote was inaccurate.

    But in describing the response to the story, the administrator said the town had received numerous calls about the issue.

  • In the season of discontent, strive to stay sweet

    The man on the telephone had clearly not rung me up to transmit a valentine.

    Interrupting my typing and toiling at the keyboard on the usual deadlines, he delivered, instead, a verbal barrage.

    He also provided unsolicited instructions on how I was to write a story from the previous night’s town council meeting (which was on the day’s to-do list, for sure).

    He certainly hoped I planned to include details on how the town’s former mayor had gotten out of line at that meeting.

  • Sunset Beach marks 150th anniversary of buried blockade runner

    One hundred and fifty years ago, a Confederate blockade runner laden with supplies and more ran aground off the coast of Bald Beach, aka the future Sunset Beach island, in the early hours of Monday, Jan. 11, 1864.

    The vessel, named the Vesta, was set on fire in 10 feet of water. It was abandoned at the beach, a casualty as it had tried in vain to flee a Yankee blockade guarding the Cape Fear River and head in a more southerly direction toward the Winyah Bay in Georgetown, S.C.