News from the Tennessee Valley Columnists
SUNDAY, MARCH 25, 2007

Steve Stewart

‘Off-duty’ minister overlooked

In his autobiography, “Brother to a Dragonfly,” the Rev. Will D. Campbell noted that some people are public pray-ers and some are not.

The Priceville Town Council had an oversupply at its meeting Tuesday.

Mayor Melvin Duran called on Councilman Wayne Dunkin for the invocation, Ronnie Thomas reports.

Oops! The Rev. Charles Smith, pastor of Point Mallard Parkway Baptist Church, was in the audience with his wife, Sandra. Normally, visiting ministers get the honor.

After Wayne gave his usual fine prayer, Melvin apologized to Charles.

“I didn’t see you,” he said.

“That’s OK. I’m off duty,” Charles replied.

“You’re never off duty,” Wayne noted. “You’re like a policeman.”

Not a problem

Charles told Ronnie that he and his wife were there in support of their son, Guy, who requested rezoning of property for a residential and commercial development on Alabama 67. Guy wasn’t present.

As it worked out, he didn’t need divine intervention. The council approved the rezoning after there were no opposing comments.

Breakfast at Blakely’s

Athens businessman Mark Zirbel wasn’t sure what a free breakfast would cost him.

Limestone County Sheriff Mike Blakely invited folks to jail Thursday for ham, eggs, biscuits and grits.

Mark, who owns Calvin’s Cleaners, arrived the same time as Holly Hollman.

“I wasn’t going in first,” he told her. “I wasn’t so sure this wasn’t some elaborate sting operation, that we were being lured here by food.”

That’s not beyond possibility. Several years ago, local authorities sent out prize notifications and told recipients to meet at an Athens hotel.

The recipients had outstanding arrest warrants, and their prize was a trip to jail.

Mascot mix-ups

Teens always like to mix it up, and they took advantage of that opportunity at a mascot workshop at East Lawrence High School.

Wildcats, bulldogs, eagles and lions took over the gym, and before long they began swapping their school mascot heads. The wildcat put on an eagle head, and the bulldog got the wildcat head.

History teacher and co-sponsor Angie Bowen watched the fun.

“I was about to ask what was so great about a bullcat,” she told Patrice Stewart. “But I’ve learned with teenagers that the less you ask, the better.”

Cockpit troubleshooting

We hope the mechanics for a shipping company are as clever at fixing airplanes as they are at responding to pilots’ complaints.

These are some of the pilots’ written gripes and the mechanics’ written responses, according to an unverified Internet report passed along by Amy Pollick:

  • Test flight OK, except auto-land very rough. Auto-land not installed on this aircraft.

  • Dead bugs on windshield. Live bugs on back-order.

  • Evidence of leak on right main landing gear. Evidence removed.

  • No. 3 engine missing. Engine found on right wing after brief search.

  • Aircraft handles funny. Aircraft warned to straighten up, fly right and be serious.

  • Mouse in cockpit. Cat installed.

    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.

  • Steve Stewart Steve Stewart
    DAILY Weekend Editor

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