News from the Tennessee Valley Columnists

Steve Stewart

Tortoises fight over a woman

Debbie Marsh of Florence raises and rescues giant tortoises at her home. She knows well the habits and moods of her six African sulcata land tortoises, Melanie Smith reports.

Two males will often fight over a female, and one male will usually win by flipping the other on his back. After mating, the victor will go back and use his head and "gulars," elongated scales under the neck, to flip the loser right side up.

Debbie said they somehow know that members of the species will die if left on their backs.

The King was here

Doug Gibson is a lawyer in Marietta, Ga. — the son of Rachel Gibson of Marietta and the late Paul Gibson, former residents of Decatur.

Judy Counts reports that Doug learned that a man who cleans his office moonlights as an Elvis impersonator.

Doug wants to put up a sign in the office: "Elvis has cleaned the building."

Respecting veterans and flag

Members of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4190 saw that flags on some local veterans' graves were torn, tattered and faded.

They believe veterans and the nation's flag deserve respect, so Post Commander Tom Pyeatt appointed Calvin Underwood as leader of a project to replace these flags. Several have already been replaced.

Calvin adds that as a community service, the post will also properly dispose of U.S. flags. Drop them off at the post's headquarters on Veterans Drive Southeast.

Upstanding speech

Hartselle native Don Logan is chairman of the board of Time-Warner Cable, former president and CEO of Time Inc. and of Southern Living's parent company, Southern Progress Co. He is no stranger to speechmaking, notes M.J. Ellington.

But in Montgomery for a speech on the future of journalism in a constantly changing world of instant computer updates, he went back to his North Alabama roots to explain how he judges a good speech.

"I'll try not to fall down," Don said after a glowing introduction. "In North Alabama, that's the definition of a good speech. You don't fall off of the stage."

Ghoulish nuptials

What a horrible wedding — intentionally so.

It happened in Grand Island, Neb. Bride Sandy Beyer, dressed in black, carried chains, handcuffs and black roses. Bridegroom Keith Vogt wore a skeleton costume. They exchanged vows in the middle of Elm Street, The Associated Press reports. Guests included Count Dracula, the Statue of Liberty and Paul Revere. Sandy said her first wedding was more traditional, but "we are having fun the second time around."

The date? Halloween, of course.

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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