News from the Tennessee Valley Columnists

Steve Stewart

Witch canít scare away young girl

The young girl stopped short, reports Eric Fleischauer, when she saw the witch dancing before a black-light strobe on Halloween. Her bag of candy, clutched in tiny hands, was forgotten.

Then her mother walked up encouragingly. The girl stood up straight and headed for the candy that was her due.

As she left, she glared back at the still-fearsome witch.

"I'm not scared," she hollered to all the witches and goblins on the block. "I'm 4!"

Who's delaying whom?

Early Wednesday morning, state Public Safety Director Mike Coppage set out for court in a county just north of Montgomery.

M.J. Ellington says he expected the case he was interested in to finish early. Then he would head back to Montgomery for a daylong transportation conference where he was a speaker.

People in the courtroom waited and waited. The defendants got nervous. The lawyers got nervous. It looked like Mr. Public Safety was going to be late to his own talk.

Finally, an anxious clerk came in and said court was canceled because the judge was in Montgomery at a national highway safety conference.

Mike told the story at that same conference to 300 people, including the judge.

Close to home

The city's budget is serious business, especially when there are more requests than cash. But there's still room for humor at Decatur City Council meetings, Martin Burkey finds.

Council members argued for and against various charities. Among them were three mental-health-related organizations. The council decided to continue funding.

Quipped District 3 Councilman Gary Hammon, "I don't think anyone could say anything involving mental health that does not affect this council."

Courthouse rats

The Morgan County Courthouse has rats, big rats, lurking outside, Sheryl Marsh says.

A person on the first floor peered out a window and said, "I wish they'd do something about their rats. They're not little ones, they're big."

Employees tell the story of an employee who armed himself with a broom and trash pan to go after a dead rat. He was told there was no dead rat. "I'll just beat him to death, then," he replied.

Gas at $4.79 per gallon!?

Could that super-sized interstate roadside advertisement possibly be correct?

Had unleaded gasoline really jumped to $4.79 per gallon overnight?

After Chris Paschenko stopped at the Birmingham filling station just off I-65 to investigate, someone told him the sign was in error.

Talk about driving business away.

Send stories for You Don't Say to or call Weekend Editor Steve Stewart at 340-2444. Or write P.O. Box 2213, Decatur, AL 35609. DAILY staff members contribute many of the items you see here.

Steve Stewart Steve Stewart
DAILY Weekend Editor

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