News from the Tennessee Valley Columnists

Steve Stewart

Engaged to a woman he hasnít met

During the Austin High School JROTC's annual Foreign Officers Conference, military personnel from Pakistan, Greece and the Philippines answered questions about their countries' culture, military and history. The officers are studying ammunition at Redstone Arsenal.

Bayne Hughes reports that one student asked if any of the countries still practice arranged marriages. Capt. Faisal Mehmood Kanju of Pakistan said yes.

"I'm engaged," he said. "But I haven't met her yet."

Canine cuisine

Another student asked Technical Sgt. Don Alcid of the Philippines if people in his country still eat dogs.

His response? "Yes."

Has he tasted it? "Tastes like chicken," he quipped, in a deadpan way that left the crowd laughing.

Decatur visitors on AFV

One of the regular players in the annual Decatur Open Table Tennis Tournament here every August is about to receive his 15 minutes of fame.

Larry White, who has won one of the tournament's 21 trophies each of the past two years, will be featured on "America's Funniest Videos" tonight on WAAY-31 at 6.

Larry told Michael Wetzel at a tournament last month that AFV was talking with him about using a clip he submitted of him playing at the Newgy Center in Gallatin, Tenn. Larry accidentally smashes the ball into the face of his playing partner, Charlie Collins of Chattanooga, in the video.

Charlie has played the annual tournament here, too. Larry, who lives in a Nashville suburb, informed his table tennis pals of the notification he received from AFV last week.

Dressing for the occasion

It's rare that the Decatur City Council meets Wednesday mornings, but the group met Oct. 11 to approve a $16.2 million bond issue.

Councilman Gary Hammon arrived early in suit and tie, and Councilman Ronny Russell, who wore more casual attire, told Gary he didn't have to dress for the meeting.

Chris Paschenko says Gary was quick with a witty reply: "I had a meeting with the Russian students this morning, and besides, there's a city ordinance against showing up for a meeting naked."

Back on the job

Losing a leg did not stop police officer Ryan Nagy from working his beat.

Ryan, 32, was crushed between two vehicles during a traffic stop in April 2005, The Associated Press reports. He now has a prosthetic leg and has returned to his beat in Middleburg Heights, Ohio.

He will first spend four weeks beside another patrolman to evaluate whether he's prepared for a full comeback. Ryan has learned to drive using his left foot.

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. This column appears Sundays and Wednesdays.

Steve Stewart Steve Stewart
DAILY Weekend Editor

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