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INSIDER@THEMETROSPIRIT.COM Insider is an anonymous, opinion-based examination of the hidden details of Augusta politics and personalities.
Neal Down Saga Picks Up Speed Rumor has it that the grand jury that handed down the indictment on Joe Neal, Jr. and his former wife Caroline Caldwell had a difference of opinion drawn along racial lines when it came to the charges of rape of a young, supposed “babysitter” in their home. The word on the street about the secretive grand jury proceedings is that the black members of the grand jury had a much harder time believing the alleged facts constituted a rape than the white members. The black culture seems more predisposed to find the girl to have been a more active participant in the events alleged. Ergo, she drank those drinks. She smoked that weed. She knew what she was doing. Joe Neal Jr.’s now-former wife has been charged with rape and furnishing alcohol to a person under the age of 21. There are problems with prosecuting a
female for rape that require evidence of conspiracy. Under the terms of the Georgia rape law O.C.G.A. Section 16-6-1, a female is physically incapable of committing the act of rape (“carnal knowledge in rape occurs when there is any penetration of the female sex organ by the male sex organ”). Is it possible that the former Mrs. Neal might have had the consent of the victim, but that Mr. Neal did not? Now that Mr. Neal and Ms. Caldwell are divorced, any spousal immunity against her testimony is gone. Speculation is that the prosecution sought her indictment at least in part to seek her testimony against her ex. That is powerful evidence that could put him away for 25 years to life. On the other hand, he could just as easily walk. Insiders in law enforcement as well as outside legal observers say this is one case that could easily go either way, given the facts as they are now understood. What is agreed upon, though, is that if Neal decides to bring in the pony-tailed lawyers from Atlanta, he’ll make a mess of this case and hinder his chances of exoneration. They’d destroy everything in their path, of course, but they could also potentially alienate jurors as well as Judge Blanchard. These types of cases should be low-key affairs, not carnival sideshows. This Insider can hear the calliope cranking up now.
Top Cop Swap Gets Closer When it comes to the future of Augusta law enforcement, the last few days have been pretty big. In front of the cameras, Sheriff Ronnie Strength tearfully announced that he was bowing out, while Capt. Scott Peebles told the world he was ready for his close up. And somewhere in Facebookland, Richard Roundtree issued an ultimatum. Strength, of course, was vintage Strength — folksy, honest and authentic. He talked a lot about sacrifice and family and the demands of the job. He deserved his moment, and he got it. Peebles, who has been Strength’s right-hand man for years now — so much so that if you listen really close they even share the same cadence — spoke of an adult lifetime spent in the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, moving up from road patrol deputy to homicide lieutenant to SWAT team commander and captain of CID. And if propriety or family ties prevent Strength from coming out and endorsing Peebles, there was nothing preventing Peebles from telling the world how a vote for him would be like a vote for Ronnie. “Recently, last week, I was honored when Sheriff Strength told a local news outlet
that the highlights of his 35-year law enforcement career were Operations Augusta Ink, Fox Hunt and Smoke Screen — operations which I designed and executed with my team,” he said, standing in front of a large crowd on the steps of the Judicial Center. So how is Roundtree campaigning? By launching a Facebook broadside demanding unity in the black community. “Let me first apologize not for what I am about to say but for waiting so long to say it,” he wrote. “We are in a position to change the face of Augusta, unite this community and to make history. Yet there members of our community who choose to chastise and defame us…’just because.’” He went on complaining that “we have been and still are our own worst enemies” and finished by saying “You can either get aboard this train… or you can stand in front of it… The choice is yours…” Not exactly the populist approach, but maybe he figures Peebles already has that wrapped up.
Everyone is heading to the NEW
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What a Web Shrewd Politics On Monday, March 11, Lori Davis wore her West Augusta Alliance president’s hat and hosted a forum for the Republican candidates running for the 12th Congressional District seat currently held by Democrat John Barrow. That president’s hat fit loosely over the candidate’s hat she’s been wearing since announcing her intention to take the District 1 Commission seat currently held by Matt Aitken. Most people who wear two hats at the same time draw attention to themselves, but this being Augusta, most people at the Warren Road Community Center didn’t bat an eye. Instead, they wondered about the congressional candidates speaking in front of them. Why did Lee Anderson look so out of place? Why did Rick Allen wait so long to agree to participate? Why were people staying after to talk to Wright McLeod? Who the hell was that Sheffield woman? But even though people were thinking about that stuff, Davis was there, she was in charge and though she wasn’t being all Vogue about it, she was still wearing that candidate’s hat. And she was out in front of politically minded folks, which in an election season is never a bad thing.
You’ve got to love technology. Not only is it a tool that broadens our boundaries to truly outrageous proportions, but it allows us to make sense of the world around us. Take the free Google translator. Without it, we never would have been able to decipher the following message: Sveicieni no Latvijas — Mes lasit Garu, too! Turns out it means “Greetings from Latvia — We read the Spirit, too!” Now how’s that for community driven? Augstu pieci, vecit!
Little Big Town is performing at the Lady A Amphitheater the Thursday of Masters Week!
John Daly will be in town for the Masters. Only between CVS and Windsor Jewelers.
Letter from the Publisher Milestones In the business world, we spend so much of our time leaning forward that it’s hard for some of us to acknowledge important moments in the past… or present, for that matter. Therefore, we would like to take a moment in this week’s issue to acknowledge an important milestone in our particular business. Why make such a personal thing public? Because our particular business is intricately linked to the community. It’s more than a business, and we recognize that. It’s an important part of the fabric of Augusta. Which is all to say that a year ago last Friday (at 4:45 p.m., to be exact) the Metro Spirit was once again locally owned. Our team realizes how fortunate we are to be at the helm. Our job is to be stewards of this great newspaper and move it forward. We’re lucky to be here, and would like to thank our supporters — readers and advertisers alike — for being a part of what we do. Thank you. Another milestone we would like to recognize is the retirement announcement of Sheriff Ronnie Strength. Of course, people’s careers end every day, but for this man and his position, it deserves to be noted. As he reminded those in attendance, he has always been straight with the press. But on a personal level, he has been gracious, welcoming and endlessly entertaining. The job takes an enormous amount of commitment and capacity for calm, and Sheriff Strength will long be remembered for his.
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JENNY IS WRIGHT
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METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
I’m sure there isn’t anyone out there who really likes talking to telemarketers. Most people probably despise it. I don’t mind giving them my time. You see, when I was at UGA, I worked at the call center for alumni fundraising. We got hung up on occasionally, but mostly people were happy to hear from their alma mater. I’m happy to answer a few questions, complete your survey and, if you’re willing to send my something in writing, I might even make a donation. Although I don’t necessarily want to talk to them, I recognize that they have a job to do. That being said, there is a fine line between making a phone call and harassment. For weeks now, an Atlanta number has been showing up on caller ID. It looks like it would be a cell phone number. That’s a dirty trick. I’ll be even more likely to answer those calls, as it could be someone I know in Atlanta. So I’ve answered. “Hello?” Nothing. Silence. “Hello?” “He-LLO?” And they hang up. If you try calling the number back, you get a busy signal. I even Googled the number, but all I found was a bunch of complaints about this exact number. A couple of days later: “HELLO?” “This is CallerGirl on behalf of Alarm Company, is Mrs. —” “Pardon me for interrupting, but can you please remove me from your list?” CLICK. She hung up. The next time this happened, my patience for CallerGirl and her job had run out. I tried to speak as quickly as I can (and I talk very fast anyway) “YesyoucalleverydayandIreallywanttoberemovedfromyourlist.” CLICK. She hung up again. I guess I’ll remain on their list. This week must’ve been Jenny’s Week of Crappy Customer Service. The next day, I was the one making the phone call. As soon as the rep answered my call, I knew it wasn’t gonna be good. She sounded bored and she was definitely above me and everyone who worked there. I explained that I’d ordered a dress and bathing suit, but a couple of weeks prior, only the bathing suit arrived. After the initial shipment, a follow up call explained that they no longer had the dress. The company (supposedly) set up a refund. Strangely enough, that very morning, I’d gotten an email saying “Congrats!” and that the bathing suit AND dress had shipped. She interrupted, “Ma’am, we no longer have the dress. I will issue a refund.” “Okay, thanks! But why did the email say that the dress was coming after all? I never got a refund.” “Well WHAT does your email say, Ma’am?” I read it to her, getting about halfway through before she interrupted me again. “And WHO sent you this email?” Um, your company? She went on to tell me that she would issue a refund, but if the dress came, I had to send it back. I asked if I could possibly keep it, since I, like, you know, wanted it in the first place. She told me that I couldn’t just have it for free. She also told me to quit interrupting her. I understand that customer service jobs aren’t easy, and the customer isn’t always right, and you may not get paid very well, but it’s your job, sweetcheeks. “You have been nothing but rude to me, and I get the impression that you don’t like your job very much. Unfortunately, it is your job, and the nature of your job says that you work for me. You aren’t in charge of me.” She actually said, “I don’t work for nobody.” Well, okay, but I feel pretty certain that this call has been recorded and your boss might beg to differ on that one. “Can I speak to your supervisor?” Needless to say, I haven’t gotten the call back from her boss, and I haven’t seen the dress. Alarm Company hasn’t called either. When they do, I’m tempted to press all the buttons on the phone, hurting their ears like they did mine. If it happens again, I think pick up the phone speaking before they can even say a word, “Hello! This is Jenny Wright calling. Can I please speak to Alarm Company?” They may not be entertained, but I will.
JENNYWRIGHT lives in Summerville with her husband, who she calls The Man, and two kids, who she affectionately calls The Boy and The Girl. She enjoys taking photos, cooking and playing tennis.
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AUGUSTA TEK New Releases
Two updated products were released in the past couple of weeks: Windows 8 and the new iPad. Each of these products continues the transition away from traditional desktop computing and toward a touch environment. The new iPad (aka iPad 3 or iPad HD) debuted last week. The most notable upgrade is the new retina display. The 9.7-inch display achieves a 2048 x 1536 pixel resolution, so you can expect to see crisper images, cleaner fonts and a superior image quality. A quad-core GPU is included in the package to drive all those pixels. You have to think that battery life is going to take a hit due to additional processing, right? Apparently, only a marginal hit. The new iPad specs show a battery life of 10 hours. Once again, Apple has set a standard that all the wannabes can only dream about. The new iPad also included a number of incremental upgrades. The rear-facing camera was upgraded to 5 megapixel and can shoot video at 1080P resolution, matching the resolution of the iPhone 4. (BTW — not sure how you feel about it, but silly as it looks, I’ve already started seeing folks taking video with their iPad. The conventional wisdom is that folks won’t use their iPad as a primary video capture device, but mark my words, it’s going to happen!) Wireless connectivity will be primarily through WiFi and Bluetooth with a 4G LTE option through AT&T and Verizon. Apple also updated some of its iLife applications to run on the iPad, most notably iPhoto, allowing users to edit pictures directly on the iPad. On the downside, Siri doesn’t live in the new iPad. I had expected her to come along, but I guess she can be a fickle kind of gal. If you don’t have a tablet, or if you have an iPad 1, what are you waiting for? If you want to receive it in the next month, you better order now. If you have an iPad 2, the choice is not as clear. If your primary iPad use is to keep the kids quiet while eating out (after all, some kid hater may be sitting behind you), you will probably be all right where you are. If you keep your life on your iPad, even without Siri, you’ll want to upgrade. The Microsoft Windows 8 Consumer Preview was released during the last week of February and includes all the updates made since the Developer Preview was released last fall. Microsoft claims that over 100,000 code changes were made since the Developer Preview, and the result is a cleaner, more unified and more mature operating system. The primary features of Windows 8 begin with the Start screen, which replaces the iconic Windows Start button we all know and love. The Start screen is a combination program launcher, dashboard and app switcher. Initially, the screen is pretty blah… but after some customization, the true functionality becomes apparent. Each Start screen block serves as a link to an application or file capable of providing real-time feedback such as weather information, messaging or the current audio track. The icons can be organized into groups. The Start screen enables search simply by typing. This is a key feature as Windows 8 productivity depends on an efficient search implementation. Other features utilize Microsoft’s cloud infrastructure. For example, user settings can be sync’d between desktops through Live ID. This feature allows users to move between devices without having to reconfigure their accounts on the new device. Other features such as Sky Drive are also available through the preview apps provided with the release. Another nice feature is the ability to create a refresh point so that the operating system can be reloaded without the loss of user data or configurations. Anyone who has lived through a “wipe and reload” will appreciate the benefit. The changes in Windows 8 create some concerns regarding user productivity, especially in the business environment. The Metro style is primarily a touch interface. Certain accommodations allow for the use of a mouse and keyboard, but users will have to learn new ways to accomplish some tasks. Also, additional training may be required to help users learn about the hidden UI elements and the numerous keyboard shortcuts. Bottom line? It’s too early to know if point-and-click users will suffer a loss of productivity versus touch users. Ultimately, Microsoft is banking on consumer adoption to drive the utilization rate within the enterprise environment. “Bring Your Own Device” is the direction enterprises are taking, driven by the widespread use of smartphones and, yes, iPads. While Apple has largely abandoned enterprise management, Microsoft exposes a policy structure to help administrators manage user devices. In Windows 8, Microsoft seems to include the hooks to allow management of side loaded, line-of-business applications; however, most of the details regarding the management of corporate apps on user devices are still to be determined. Windows 8 appears to be a very solid, well thought-out and much-needed advancement. Given another six months of maturity, it’s possible that Windows 8 can compete with Android and the iPad in the tablet/touch market and still maintain dominance in the desktop market. But will the consumer market judge Windows 8 as a suitable alternative for the iPad? Only time will tell. Until next time, I’ll see you on the internet @gregory_a_baker.
GREGORY A. BAKER, PH.D, is vice president and chief rocket scientist for CMA, which provides information technology services to CSRA businesses and nonprofits. V. 23 | NO. 11
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
AUSTIN RHODES Thanks, Wherever You Are
It was your call. It could have all been over in 20 minutes. A D&C as it is called by medical professionals... an abortion in the more common use of the phrase. 20 minutes... over and out. Forever. You chose to take another route. You made the decision 21 years and seven months ago. You saw it through. Thank you, wherever you are. Your choice gave me my daughter. You sacrificed nine months of physical comfort, suffered countless nauseous mornings, survived fitful nights tortured by conscience and guilt, and faced every conceivable regret a soul can bear. You did it for me and her mother, you did it for her little brothers and sister, you did it for all of us who love her, and we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. I held her in my arms 60 seconds after she left your body, and in my heart, I have not let go of her once. She was perfect from the start, and makes me proud to this very moment. Her first word was “Daddy”... her favorite sound was her Mom’s voice. Her first cat was Jackson, her first dogs, Sweetness and Penny. She watched spooky movies with me and played in the kitchen with her “MA.” She shopped with “Mama Bev” and learned about the computer from “PA.” She loves sports like her Aunt Judy, and music like her Uncle “Bubba.” She is an important part of a loving, extended family, and it is all because of you. Twenty-one years later, she is a beautiful young woman with her entire life ahead of her. I wanted a smart, talented, athletic daughter, so it was clear I was going to have to adopt one. I got all that with Christine, and a whole lot more. Like me, she is not much of a morning person. I got to see that up close every day as I used to drive her to school. She is a much better student than I was in most subjects, but just like me she often loses sight of the finish line. Like her Mom, she is a natural with small children, and has spent most of the last few years working as a beloved babysitter and cherished nanny. Like every Rhodes on the planet, she pitches fits over lost football
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
The views expressed are the opinions of Austin Rhodes and do not necessarily represent the views of the publisher.
games and “fumbled” elections. The next time someone does a “nature vs. nurture” study, they should consider January 2005 when our “family team,” the Pittsburgh Steelers, almost handed the Indianapolis Colts a playoff game on a platter. Not to rehash the game, but in the ultimate tense final moments, with a house full of family living and dying with every play, Christine and her “Daddy Bob” both disappeared out the backdoor, too angry and heartbroken to see anymore. When the Colts’ kicker was wide right on the game tying kick, the two of them reacted with the same amazed look of relief, disgust and celebration. Granddaughter and Granddaddy... two of a kind in the Black and Gold, whooping it up in the backyard, entertaining neighbors in ever direction. All was right in the world a few weeks later when we gathered again, in our customized jerseys, to cheer our team on to a Super Bowl victory. Just like I had last done with my Dad and Grandfather 26 years earlier. Memories now sharing a place in my heart with Christine’s first birthday party, her first roller coaster ride, her first Georgia game, her first Christmas, her first day of school and her high school graduation. I stood beside her as she looked down on New York City for the first time from the Empire State Building, the first time she skied down a mountain, and the night she whispered and giggled in the corner of a crowded meeting room (much to the chagrin of a waiting Secret Service detail) with President Bush. Christine has already had an incredible life, and the great part is, she is just getting started. When her Mom and I were told we couldn’t have children of our own we had no way of knowing what your wonderful choice was going to ultimately give us. It was your Constitutional right to go the other way, and there was no one and nothing to guide you but your own heart, your own soul, and your own faith. You did the right thing, and we thank you for it every day of our lives. In 1991 there were 1,556,500 women who made the other choice. Twenty-one years ago this week my first child and only daughter was born. Happy Birthday to her, and wherever you are, Happy Birthday to you, too.
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The “B” Guitar
Bailey and Sons handmade guitars come to the rescue The B-shaped guitar logo may not be available in stores, but if you see one of Bill Bailey’s handmade guitars being played around town, you know the person playing the guitar was picked by him. Baileys and Sons is a business that builds handmade acoustic guitars, and out of the 10 guitars that Bailey has made, he has given them all away. “You know, we bless them and in turn they bless somebody else,” he said. “That’s really what it is all about; this is just my way of serving the Lord in another way.” Bailey said the process is simple, because when he makes guitars for specific people rather than simply to sell, he has already had it in his heart. One particular person that he gave a guitar to was a gentleman he met in a coffee shop. Bailey said that he didn’t know him at first, but he listened to him sing and play the guitar, and then started to talk to him. One day, to the gentleman’s surprise, Bailey presented him a custom-built Bailey and Son guitar. “It’s a passion because it’s more about people,” he said. “I love people that play guitar more than I love guitars, and if I’m able to put a guitar like this in somebody’s hand that can’t afford one, it brings so much more joy to me than selling one.” Bailey has been playing the guitar for 40 years, and in those years he has done a lot of repairing, but he didn’t start doing more until his sons brought him a book on how to build acoustic guitars almost a decade ago. It took about six months of constant reading for him to fully digest the guitar book, and only then did he decide to take his first journey as becoming a luthier. “I read that book and I have always been good with my hands, so me and my son Joshua went on our crusade to build a guitar,” he said. The first guitar that he made was for one of his five sons. That guitar, however, doesn’t look like the ones he makes today. “The first guitar kind of looked a little bit older,” he said. “The guitars that I build now have their own distinct look.” Bailey said that every piece of wood in the guitar is cut down to size and molded by him. He buys the strings and templates to cut in precise measurements, but every piece of wood from the neck of the guitar to the body is inched out by sweat and prayer. “The only thing that holds this together is glue,” he said. “No bolts, no screws, it’s just all glue, and some people that I have on my heart, I put a scripture in the guitar.” As a personal signature to the guitarist, Bailey will often also put something on the fretboard of the guitar to integrate what that guitarist may like. On one he had a sword, while another has a clock on it. “A lot of times when I’m building a guitar for someone, I will find out what they like,” he said. “I will incorporate something in the guitar that will speak to them. I take a mental note and build that guitar off of it.” To build a guitar for a person, Bailey said, the key is to know if a person plays aggressive on the guitar or light. He said that it is also good to know what type of
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sound they want to achieve, since the type of wood gives each guitar a particular sound. “Every guitar is going to have its own individual voice,” he said. “If I build a guitar that’s of maple, it’s going to have a brighter voice, a real clear voice. Also, with mahogany it’s going to have a nice warm voice, and rosewood will have a very loud, deep voice.” The richness of the sound, he said, depends on the wood and where it’s used. “And because each part is hand-carved, the dimensions and the weight of each part is going to be different from guitar to guitar because it is cut from a different tree,” he said. Despite working a full-time job during the week, Bailey finds the business of making guitars so relaxing, he calls it guitar therapy. “It can be frustrating at times, but I would say it’s more relaxing, more therapeutic for me,” he said. “It’s just something good to do to help me unwind and get my thoughts together. There’s something about putting the finish on it and polishing it. As far as what I do, I don’t know anything more gratifying than that.” With time and patience, Bailey said, you can see the improvement in each guitar. For him, no two guitars are alike. Although Bailey has not made a personal guitar for himself, he said his inspiration of making them and giving a select few away will never change. Bailey said that he enjoys what he does and he believes that a little bit of his heart is being spread abroad when he makes and gives a guitar away. Even though he does have a price list for making guitars and a few people are saving up to buy his guitars, he continues to say it is more about the people. “When I first started building, I never even thought I would build one to sell one,” he said. “When I first started building, I just wanted to build them for the people.” METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
A Foundation of Mistrust Bus property battle frustrates commissioner
Though much of the rest of the city doesn’t make much of a distinction between Georgia Health Sciences University (GHSU) and the MCG Foundation, Commissioner Joe Bowles does, especially when it comes to who he would like to see as a landlord in Harrisburg. “GHSU — yes,” he says. “The MCG Foundation — no.” The battle of words over the city’s relationship with a proposed Walmart Neighborhood Market planned for a city-owned parcel off 15th Street and the lengths the foundation may have gone to sabotage that relationship has been escalating over the last few days, but Bowles doesn’t shy away from saying that the MCG Foundation and its president, James Osborne, have not been team players throughout the negotiations. “In terms of cooperation, I would say the foundation has zero cooperation,” he says. “And I know for a fact that GHSU and President Azziz and his director of facilities are still meeting with Blanchard and Calhoun and they’re working a pretty substantial deal out.” As for the million-dollar offer for the property the foundation claims the city ignored, Bowles says he doesn’t remember it. “I do remember when this idea came up Jerry Brigham saying he was sure the MCG Foundation was interested in that property, too,” Bowles says. “I looked at him
10 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
and told him I could care less, because the last thing I think the people in Harrisburg want is that whole 15th Street block from the bridge to Walton Way looking like the Kroger.” As for the other property the foundation has bought up in Harrisburg, he says he’s heard from people in Harrisburg that they’re “just as crappy as the Kroger,” which calls into question the kind of landlord the foundation really is. “The idea to me of them owning that property versus a private entity was never even a remote possibility, because private entities realize that if they don’t maintain the property and put money back into the property, that the tenant is going to leave,” he says. “You go around the Southeast and look at Blanchard and Calhoun developments, and I think everyone would be pretty satisfied with what they’ve done.” Besides that, he says, there’s no telling how long the foundation might hold onto the property, while an active grocery store has ramifications to the city’s bottom line. “It’s not going to increase revenue,” he says, “But it will increase our tax revenue because of the property values. That will be a huge investment.” Bowles’ distrust of the foundation goes back to the building of the dental school. The city ended up paying $10 million to MCG, while the foundation refused to give any money. “If they had a million dollars to spend on the bus property, why didn’t they give a million to Dr. Ron to build the dental school?”
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Ruffin’ It Make It Better
I’ve never quite known how to describe this column to those who ask. When I was just making wise-ass remarks about knitting/cheese/Norwegian grindcore podcasts, I would tell inquiring minds exactly that. Never mind that they had no idea what I meant (at best) or that they thought I might be having a stroke right before their eyes (at even more best). I knew what I meant, and I retained some sense of contentment from that, even if the accomplishment is right on par with an eight-year-old finally being able to explain to his grandparents why the Birds are so Angry. Since the format change, however, it’s been a little harder to define. You can’t just tell someone — least of all a job recruiter — that you get paid actual money to pretty much let your brain titter about like a horde of caffeinated spiders, then send it off to an editor who probably gives me far too much leeway. This thing has morphed into an ephemeral beast, a cross between a platypus and the Higgs Boson: you know it exists, you can present hard (or at least compellingly theoretical) evidence, but everyone’s still going to call bull***t. Which is why, in some ways, it’s sort of fortunate this has become a quasi-political forum. Now look, I don’t claim to understand the intricacies of globalization, the implications of Putin’s reelection or how Rush Limbaugh’s gut defies the laws of
three percent of procedures performed at Planned Parenthood clinics. Truth be told, I’m beyond confused. I’m pissed off, and not just because the national health care plan the Obama administration is stridently trying to push through made my sister’s medication for a potentially life-threatening blood disorder more affordable, or that the free/cheap birth control the plan would benefit many important women in my life, including friends, relatives, teachers and others by ensuring more manageable periods, lowering the risk for certain cancers and, yes, preventing unwanted pregnancies. No, I’m also pissed off because the assertions of staunch social conservatives on this issue flies in the face not only of common sense — easier access to birth control would lessen the need for abortions in the first place, and women are going to get abortions, one way or another — but of our nation’s very laws. Religious organizations and/or employers want to deny women birth control based on their religion? Okay, that’s fine. Just sign away your tax-exempt status, and we’ll be square. How did we get this ass-backwards? How did our national dialogue revert back to issues that were supposed to have been settled half a century ago? Women’s basic
physics by not swallowing all light, space and time. For the longest time, I thought a “minority whip” was something I wasn’t allowed to look at on the internet. But I read, I watch the news — on different channels, though if I keep the TV on Fox for more than 60 seconds, my brain starts to gnaw its way through my skull — and I do my best to make sense of what’s going on. And oftentimes, it baffles me. This week, eight female Democratic senators walked out of the proceedings after a GOP-led Senate passed two bills: one providing for “religious exemptions” to employers with regards to providing birth control as part of health plans, and another that outright prevents health plans from paying for abortions, even in cases of rape and incest. The author of one bill, Republican State Senator Josh McKoon (pictured above), is doing his damndest to frame this, predictably, as a matter of states’ rights and religious freedom, stating in turn that “As long as Georgia is regulating health insurance, we want to provide flexibility for religious employers, particularly when we’re asking the federal government to do the same,” and that he “would say that the war that’s being waged is on religious minority in this country that has strong beliefs that are protected by the First Amendment.” Other states are also attempting to hijack women’s uteruses: Virginia recently signed into law a measure mandating “jelly on the belly” ultrasounds for women seeking abortions — despite the fact that such a procedure is unnecessary (at abortive states, the embryo is barely an inch long, and so the pathos card is out), and damned expensive. Texas Governor Rick “F***knob” Perry is essentially defunding Planned Parenthood in the state — despite the fact that abortions make up, at most, about
reproductive and biological rights are under attack; African American voters are being disenfranchised by new voter ID laws in 30 states; Ted Nugent can threaten to put a gun in the mouths of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, and no one on Fox News says a word. Meanwhile, Obama can speak up for racial equality in 1991 and be vilified for it. And states’ rights? Please. There are better, more constructive ways to exercise our state’s autonomy than attempting to tell women that we know their bodies better than they do. So, in other ways, this column’s political evolution is a horrible, horrible thing. Because this stuff keeps happening. And I keep having to write about it, or else I’ll harbor so much rage that my veins will turn into snakes. That’s why I’m making a personal plea to you, reader: sign petitions, vote on referendums, protest, write letters, engage in thoughtful conversation with both your friends and enemies. Do this, because it has to start with you, at this level. This country and its citizens are better than our current state, and it’s time we started acting like it. God, I am so tired.
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*Some facts found at nytimes.com, Slog, Raw Story and Politico.
JOSHRUFFIN, an ASU and Metro Spirit alum, is a published journalist and poet, who just received his
MFA from Georgia College & State University. He was once the most un-intimidating bouncer at Soul Bar.
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By David J. Kahn / Edited by Will Shortz 99 Dr. Jekyll creator’s monogram 100 Single 101 Botanical balm 102 Word with free or bound 103 Average 104 Architect Saarinen 106 Reminder of a sort 107 Have 108 ___ dixit 109 The woman replied “…” 115 Terse denial 116 Sci-fi film with an android named Ash 117 “What am ___ do?” 118 “As good as done” 119 L.A. hours 120 Man with a mission, maybe 121 Go-ahead 122 Serenaded
41 Printing problem 42 Baseball manager Ned 47 Grab bag 48 Make some waves 49 Obsessed about 51 With no warmth 52 Deep border lake 53 Board that’s disposable 54 Sported 55 Alcohol producer 56 Dinghy duo 57 ___ Minor 58 Lacking depth, in brief 59 Cairo’s river 65 Bowling ball feature 67 Titan’s place 68 Portfolio options, for short 70 Beach debris also known as rockweed 73 Comic British character who DOWN rarely speaks 1 Single, say 76 J.F.K. transport 2 Perfect example 79 Hops dryer 3 Skillful reasoner 80 Petunia Dursley, to Harry Potter 4 Bernese ___ 81 Raymond’s mother on 5 Mid 11th-century year “Everybody Loves Raymond” 6 Long stretch 82 Christmas decoration 7 Like Steve Jobs, e.g. 87 Toboggan ride’s starting point 8 Blockhead 88 Stat for Steve Nash 9 Grazing ground 89 When to tour Tours? 10 Maryland, once 90 Like 14-Down 11 Skagway locale 91 Knievel feat 12 Blogger’s bit 92 Lacing (into) 13 They make 39-Down: Abbr. 93 Perturbed 14 Courtroom words 94 Sign off on 15 Gaping mouths 96 Virus carrier, maybe 16 Gil ___, original lead role on “CSI” 97 Musical star Paige who played 17 Winner of 2009’s Best Supporting the original Evita Actress Oscar for “Precious” 98 1994 biopic 22 Places to relax 99 Pull (in) 24 Underwater breathing aids 105 Let out 25 Smooth finish 106 Declined a bit 26 Quick end to a boxing match? 107 ___ von Bismarck 32 Mazda roadster 108 Game cry 33 Pilgrims John and Priscilla 110 Select 34 Comedian Smirnoff 111 ___ française 35 It’s a wrap 112 Game cry 36 Toe woe 113 How-dos 39 They sometimes divide 114 Australian runner neighborhoods 40 Some royalties
A M O K
N O N E
S Y P H O N
C O H I B A
T R O G L O D Y T E S
B U R T
A N E W
C D L I
S C O P E I D N F F L E A Z T E L S I M Y A L N E K E E R E A S T
N O D E S R E B E C C A A N G S T
L E A D U P T O I R A Q I S D R E I
W O U N D E D K N E E
Z I R C O N
A L B I N O
E A C H
R H E E
A R T S
C F O S
E R O O
P A S O
S E X T
M A R T
T R A S
A S E C
S O R E
L I P O
ACROSS 1 “___ Mucho” (#1 oldie) 7 Sublime, in hip-hop slang 10 Former Mercury model 15 ___ Grand 18 Dragon slayer of myth 19 Stick on a table 20 Prayer opener 21 Big Apple baseball name 23 An elderly woman was having dinner with her husband and was … 27 Biblical verb endings 28 Pen pal? 29 At sea 30 Guilty ___ 31 ___ polloi 32 Africa’s bygone ___ Empire 34 Big tug 35 Big shots they’re not 37 Geom. shapes 38 She said “After all these years …” 43 Foursomes 44 Squeeze (out) 45 Big name in makeup 46 Supped 47 Spanish bear 48 Destination NW of LAX 50 Colorful moths 51 Then she remarked “…” 58 Clock sound 60 Verbalized 61 Be sociable, say 62 Barack Obama’s mama 63 Jug part 64 Card game similar to écarté 66 Domestic 69 Old despots 71 Bribe 72 Med. plan 74 ___ kiss 75 St. Pete stadium, with “the” 77 She, in Siena 78 Her husband asked “…?” 83 Diplomat: Abbr. 84 “Home away from home” grp. 85 Halftime staples 86 Game cry 87 One whose star is dimmed 90 Hit sign 91 Places to find people lying 95 Then he asked “Or …?”
A C A S X A C T L S H O H I M C E A R E S S I N T P S W P L E A L E N S E R S H L G E O U E E N R E S E Z A D E L T R O O O O N D M A E S L
A G S E P T O M T I N L A V I D H E E S U R L A A I G R O P U R T A T S T H L O E W
A V O N
V A L E T P S R A I D R E I C E L A E W N E E D
B E N E T L I P R E A D R H O D A
F R I A R Y
E M B R Y O S
E R I E A M M A A R J O C O K N S P T E A R R U
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12 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
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Your Weird Week in Crime
M W Monday, March 5
One count of: Receiving stolen property Financial fraud Property damage Assault Burglary with forced entry (night time) Giving false identity to an officer
Two counts of: Burglary with forced entry (time unknown) Three counts of: Public peace disturbance Invasion of privacy Six counts of: Larceny (both felony and misdemeanor)
Tuesday, March 6
One count of: Identity fraud Burglary with no forced entry (time unknown) Burglary with forced entry (time unknown) False report of crime Deposit account fraud Theft/mislaid property Vehicle theft Two counts of: Forgery Invasion of privacy Three counts of: Financial fraud Assault Seven counts of: Larceny (both felony and misdemeanor)
Wednesday, March 7 One count of: Public peace disturbance Theft by deception Burglary with forced entry (daytime) Burglary with no forced entry (night time) Two counts of: Financial fraud Burglary with forced entry (night time) Three counts of: Assault Four counts of: Invasion of privacy Seven counts of: Larceny (both felony and misdemeanor)
TH Thursday, March 8
One count of: Property damage Purse snatching Theft/mislaid property Financial fraud Giving false identity to an officer Burglary with forced entry (daytime) Burglary with no forced entry (time unknown) Vehicle theft Two counts of: Public peace disturbance Burglary with forced entry (night time) Identity fraud Three counts of: Assault Nine counts of: Larceny (both felony and misdemeanor)
Friday, March 9
One count of: Financial fraud Invasion of property Vehicle theft Recovered property Giving false identity to an officer Obtaining controlled substance by fraud Interference with government property Two counts of: Property damage Identity fraud Ten counts of: Larceny (both felony and misdemeanor)
Saturday, March 10
One count of: Attempted vehicle theft Forgery Flight-escape Robbery by force Burglary with forced entry (daytime) Burglary with no forced entry (daytime) Burglary with no forced entry (time unknown) Theft by deception Two counts of: Assault Three counts of: Invasion of privacy Four counts of: Larceny (both felony and misdemeanor)
SU Sunday, March 11
One count of: Public indecency Invasion of privacy Weapons offense (pointing a firearm) Vehicle theft Burglary with no forced entry (night time) Attempted burglary with forced entry (daytime) Two counts of: Burglary with forced entry (time unknown)
Odd crimes of the week:
Burglars kicked in the door of a residence to steal trash bags full of cans. A man by the Augusta Canal was literally caught with his zipper down, masturbating in his car.
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Three counts of: Larceny (both felony and misdemeanor) Assault Public peace disturbance
Stolen items for the week:
Is Augusta-Richmond County really as crime ridden as you think it is? What kind of crime is actually going on? The Metro Spirit sifts through the incident reports to find out.
Copper wire Car batteries Welder Floor jack Impact wrench Purses Cell phones Driver licenses Debit cards Credit cards Checkbooks Oral B dual clean HALO mega blocks Laptops .40 cal Glock $1,000 AC units Xbox 360s 100 Xbox games Wii Super Mario Galaxy 2 Childâ€™s shoes Car keys House keys Office keys Car speakers Car amps Car CD players Natural gas space heater 120 Endocets 30 Lyrical Carburetor Car hood Shifter knob Horn button Sub woofers Hitch trailers Post hole diggers Steel bars Landscaping papers Night light timer $2,500 Bracelets Rings Necklaces Digital camera Mountain bikes Child booster seat Child restraint seat TVs Cypress tree Religious porch pictures Solar yard tree lights SSN cards Rims Eyeglasses Ford Ranger Miter saw Attic vent fan Roof vent Electric broom Electric wire Electric mixer Jig saw Cordless drill Bed linens Joe Boxer T-shirt bras Joe Boxer thongs Joe Boxer hipsters Joe Boxer boy shorts Pedestal fan Kerosene jet heater Power cords Weed eater Chain saw Garmin GPS Radar detector Hospital ID Polo boots $10 Electrical outlet covers Ceiling light kits Plastic planter Dre Beats headphones Suitcase Maytag washer PS2 Black Chevrolet $500 Trashcans
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 13
Friday, March 9th 2:05pm 401 Walton Way A Sheriff calls it quits
Sheriff Ronnie Strength with Patti (wife) & Heather Disher (stepdaughter)
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March 17, at First Baptist Church and begins with a small instrument petting zoo at 9:30 a.m. and the rehearsal at 10:30 a.m. Call 706-826-4705 or visit soaugusta.org.
Livingston Taylor performs Saturday, March 17, at 7:30 p.m. at the Imperial Theatre. $10-$60. $60 tickets include an invitation to a VIP pre-show reception. Call 706-722-8341 or visit imperialtheatre.com. Deceptive Reality, a Symphony Orchestra Augusta concert featuring violinist Micah Gangwer, is Saturday, March 17, at 7:30 p.m. at First Baptist Church. $17.76-$41.12. Call 706-826-4705 or visit soaugusta.org. The Glenn Miller Orchestra performs Saturday, March 17, at 7:30 p.m. at the Jabez Sanford Hardin Performing Arts Center. $30-$35. Call 706-726-0366 or visit augustaamusements.tix.com. Music of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, an ASU music faculty and colleagues concert that plays as part of the Music at the Morris series, is Sunday, March 18, at 2 p.m. at the museum. Free. Call 706-724-7501 or visit themorris.org.
Sic Semper Tyrannis means “thus always to tyrants” not, as it is often mistranslated, “down with tyrants.” Still, Brutus of “et tu, Brute?” fame is said to have uttered it upon stabbing Caesar in the back, John Wilkes Booth shouted it before killing Abe Lincoln and Timothy McVeigh was wearing a T-shir t bearing the words when he was arrested for the Oklahoma City bombing. Find out what they all have in common during a lecture March 22 and 25 at 2 p.m. at ASU’s Maxwell Theatre. Then stick around for the Bard’s “Julius Caesar” which will immediately follow, and will also show March 22-24 at 7:30 p.m. Call 706-667-4100 or visit aug.edu.
Art at Lunch, featuring “Shrimp, Collards and Grits” author Pat Branning, is Friday, March 16, at noon at the Morris Museum of Art. Lunch is by Fat Man’s. $10, members; $14, non-members. Call 706724-7501 or visit themorris.org. Sunday Sketch at the Morris Museum of Art is Sunday, March 18, at 2 p.m. Materials are provided by the museum. Free. Call 706-724-7501 or visit themorris.org. Exhibition Celebration: Fore! the Love of Golf Party is Thursday, March 22, at 6 p.m. at the Morris Museum of Art and features appearances by artists included in the exhibition, Azalea cocktails, pimento cheese sandwiches, putting greens and more. $5, members; $10, non-members. Pre-registration required. Call 706-7247501 or visit themorris.org.
Lindy Crandell Art Exhibit, featuring works in oil, pastels and colored pencil, V. 23 | NO. 11
shows March 1-30 at the Aiken Art Guild Gallery at the Aiken Center for the Arts. Call 803-278-0709 or visit aikenartistguild.org. Leo Twiggs, Mel Holston and Nancy Wyman Ray Exhibitions show at the Aiken Center for the Arts through March 23. Call 803-641-9094 or visit aikencenterforthearts.org. African American Trailblazers of Augusta shows through March 31 at the Lucy Craft Laney Museum of Black History. $2-$5. Call 706-724-3576 or visit lucycraftlaneymuseum.com.
Chamber Music Recital is Thursday, March 15, at 7 p.m. at the Arts & Heritage Center in North Augusta. Free. Call 803-441-4380 or visit artsandheritagecenter.com. Juilliard Jazz After Hours is Thursday, March 15, at 9 p.m. at the Willcox and features music by seven Juilliard-trained musicians. Free. Call 803-648-1898 or visit thewillcox.com. Don Williams appears in concert Friday, March 16, at 7:30 p.m. at the Bell Auditorium. $34.50-$57.50. Call 877-4AUGTIX or visit georgialinatix.com.
Fore! Images in Golf Art, featuring 25 paintings, photographs and drawings, shows through April 15 at the Morris Museum of Art. Featured artists include LeRoy Neiman, Will Barnet, Tim Clark and Ray Ellis. Call 706-724-7501 or visit themorris.org.
Ed Turner & Number 9: Rock & Soul Revue performs at Le Chat Noir on Friday and Saturday, March 16-17 and 23-24, at 7:30 p.m. $35. Tickets are only available at the CSRA Humane Society. Call 706-261-PETS or visit csrahumanesociety.org.
Symphony Orchestra Augusta’s Free Open Dress Rehearsal is Saturday,
The U.S. Army Signal Corps Band Spring
Rose Sunday Concert, featuring organist Keith Shafer, is Sunday, March 18, at 4 p.m. at St. Paul’s Church. The concert and the reception that follows are free and open to the public, and childcare will be provided. Visit saintpauls.org. The Crystal Trio, a group that performs on crystal glasses and other instruments, appears Tuesday, March 20, at noon at St. Paul’s Church as the final concert in the 24th season of Tuesday’s Music Live. The concert is free but the lunch that follows is $10 by advanced reservation only. Call 706-7223463 or visit tuesdaysmusiclive.com. The U.S. Army Signal Corps Band and Brass Band, featuring guest jazz trombonist Wycliffe Gordon, perform Thursday, March 22, at 7 p.m. at the Burke County High School auditorium as part of the Waynesboro-Burke Concert Series. Call 706-437-0070 or email email@example.com. The Augusta Choral Society is offering a $300 scholarship to high school seniors who have contributed their vocal musical talents to the area. The application, due April 14, is available online, as is further criteria. Call 706-826-4713 or visit augustachoralsociety.org. METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 17
The Spring Sandhills Writers Series at Augusta State University is Thursday, March 15, with poet and literary critic Donna Aza Weir-Soley giving a reading at 10 a.m. and novelist and scriptwriter Jeffrey Stepakoff reading at 1 p.m. Each will be followed by a discussion, booksigning and reception. Free and open to the public. Call 706-667-4437 or visit sandhills.aug.edu. Book Discussion, featuring “The Linnet Bird” by Linda Holeman, is Thursday, March 15, at 11:30 a.m. at the Columbia County Library. Call 706-863-1946 or visit ecgrl.org. Book Discussion, featuring “The Best Man to Die” by Ruth Rendell, is Thursday, March 15, at 4 p.m. at the Harlem Branch Library. Call 706-556-9795 or visit ecgrl.org. Book Club, featuring “Is Marriage for White People? How African American Marriage Decline Affects Everyone” by Ralph Richard, is Thursday, March 15, at 6:30 p.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706-821-2600 or visit ecgrl.org. Do You Lyric Lounge, an open mic variety show hosted by LadyVee DaPoet, is Friday, March 16, at 7:30 p.m. at Club Private. $7. Call 770-361-6411 Basement Book Sale is Saturday, March 17, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at the Appleby Branch Library. Call 706-736-6244 or visit ecgrl.org. Monday Night Book Discussion, featuring “The Paris Wife” by Paula McLain, is Monday, March 19, at 6:30 p.m. at the Columbia County Library. Call 706-8631946 or visit ecgrl.org. Let’s Talk About It Book Club, featuring “Noon Wine” by Katherine Anne Porter, is Tuesday, March 20, at 7 p.m. at the Aiken Library. Call 803-642-2020 or visit abbe-lib.org. Poetry Matters is accepting entries through March 23 for their annual poetry contest. Cash prizes will be give out. Categories are middle and high school, adults and seniors. Visit poetrymatterscelebration.com.
Ballet Hispanico, a performance that fuses Latin, classical and contemporary techniques, performs Friday, March 16, at 8 p.m. at the Imperial Theatre. 18 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
$10-$75. Call 706-722-8341 or visit imperialtheatre.com.
“Menopause: The Musical” shows Tuesday-Friday, March 20-23, at 8 p.m. at the Imperial Theatre. $46. Call 706722-8341 or visit imperialtheatre.com. “Julius Caesar” by William Shakespeare shows March 22 at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., March 23-24 at 7:30 p.m. and March 25 at 3 p.m. $10, general public; $7, seniors; $5, children. Call 706-667-4100 or visit aug.edu. “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying,” a Westminster spring musical, shows March 22-24 at 7 p.m. at the school. $12, adults; $6, students, alumni or children. Call 706-731-5260 or visit wsa.net. Auditions for Enopion Theatre Company’s production of “The Prince is Giving a Ball are each Thursday through March 15 by appointment. The production shows in Augusta. Call 706-771-7777 or visit enopion.com. The Columbia County Amateur Series is looking for acts to perform at the Columbia County Amphitheater. Signup continues through March 31. Call 706-868-3349 or email ccook@ columbiacountyga.gov.
“13 Assassins” shows Monday, March 19, at 7 p.m. at ASU’s University Hall room 170. $2. Call 706-729-2416 or visit aug.edu. “The Fisher King” shows Tuesday, March 20, at 6:30 p.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706-821-2600 or visit ecgrl.org.
In-Shop Wine Tasting is Thursday, March 15, from 5-8 p.m. at Wine World in North Augusta. $5, with a $3 rebate upon purchase on featured wine. Call 803279-9522 or visit wineworldsc.com. A Blending of Words and Music, featuring New Mexico poet Linda Whittenberg and music by Andi Hearn, Davey Mathias and Lillie Morris, is Friday, March 16, at 7:30 p.m. at Fat Man’s Mill Cafe. Whittenberg’s new book, “Somewhere in Ireland… A Journey of Discovery,” features Morris’ artwork. Free, but pre-registration recommended. Call 706-267-5416.
Juilliard in Aiken continues through March 16. For a complete list of events and to purchase tickets, visit juilliardinaiken.com. St. Patrick’s Day features a parade on Broad Street and a celebration at the Augusta Common that includes live entertainment, a children’s play area, food, merchandise and drinks. It is Saturday, March 17, from 2-9 p.m. Call 706-821-1754 or visit augustaga.gov. St. Paddy’s Day Celebration in front of Bean Baskette Coffee, Tavern at the Bean and Vineyard Wine Market is from 4 p.m.-midnight on Saturday, March 17, and includes Irish food, live music, beer tastings, hourly drawings and more. Advanced tickets on sale now. Call 706-447-2006 or visit beanbaskettecoffee.com. Ralphie May’s Too Big to Ignore comedy tour appears at the Imperial Theatre Sunday, March 18, at 7:30 p.m. $32.50. Call 706-722-8341 or visit imperialtheatre.com. Women of Valor: The Legacy Quilt presentation is Tuesday, March 20, at 2:30 p.m. on the second floor of ASU’s Reece Library. The quilt tells the story of 11 women who worked as advocates for social justice and women’s rights in Georgia between 1850-1950. Call 706737-1444 or visit aug.edu. Cultivate the Garden Within, the Augusta Council of Garden Clubs’ 21st Annual Spring Luncheon and Awards Ceremony, is Thursday, March 22, at 9:30 a.m. at the Augusta Country Club. Guest speaker is Pat Lanza, author of “My Life In and Out of the Garden.” The luncheon, which begins at noon, also features silent auctions and door prizes. $25; $35 after March 16. Email firstname.lastname@example.org. Tasting at the Rapids, a culinary event that features sample dishes from local restaurants, sweets from local bakers and an appearance by the Food Network’s DJ Chef Marc Weiss, is Thursday, March 22, from 6-9 p.m. at the Savannah Rapids Pavilion. $5 admission features five sampling tickets. Call 706312-7191 or visit columbiacountyga.gov. Tours of the Boyhood Home of President Woodrow Wilson are Tuesday-Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., on the hour, at 415 Seventh Street. $3-$5; free for children under 5. Groups of 10 or more need a reservation. Call 706-724-0436 or visit historicaugusta.org.
Weekly Wine Tastings at Vineyard Wine Market in Evans are each Friday from 4:30-6:30 p.m. and each Saturday from 1-6 p.m. Call 706-922-9463 or visit vine11.com. AARP Tax Help is offered through March on Monday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., at Euchee Creek Branch Library; Tuesday and Thursday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., at the Columbia County Library; Wednesday-Friday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., at the Headquarters Branch Library; Thursday, noon-4 p.m., and Friday-Saturday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., at Maxwell Library. Visit ecgrl.org.
Spine Education and Support Group, for those preparing for spine surgery, is Wednesday, March 15, at 1 p.m. at the Levi Hill III Auditorium. Call 706-7742760 or visit universityhealth.org. Colon Cancer: A Preventable Disease is Thursday, March 15, at 6 p.m. at the Savannah Rapids Pavilion. A talk by surgeon Barry Jenkins and light refreshments are included. Pre-registration required. Visit universityhealth.org. Breastfeeding Class is Thursday, March 15, at 6:30 p.m. at Doctors Hospital. Pre-registration required. Call 706-6512229 or visit doctors-hospital.net. Breastfeeding Class is Thursday, March 15, at 7 p.m. at Babies R Us. Free, but pre-registration required. Call 706-7742825 or visit universityhealth.org. Look Good… Feel Better, a class that helps female cancer patients maintain their appearance and self-image during chemo and radiation, is Monday, March 19, at 5 p.m. at the American Cancer Society office. Pre-registration required. Call 706-731-9900 or visit universityhealth.org. Peaceful Parenting Book Club meets Monday, March 19, at 7 p.m. at Earth Fare. Call 706-231-0022 or email email@example.com. Total Joint Replacement Class meets Tuesday, March 20, at 1 p.m. at University Hospital’s Levi Hill III Auditorium. Call 706-774-2760 or visit universityhealth.org. Breastfeeding Class meets Tuesday, March 20, at 7 p.m. at GHSU’s Medical Center. Pre-registration required. Call 706-7219351 or visit georgiahealth.org. V. 23 | NO. 11
Free Colon Cancer Screening Kits are being offered throughout March by Doctors Hospital, who will mail the athome kits to those interested. Call 706651-4343 or visit doctors-hospital.net. Child Safety Seat Inspections and Car Seat Class, sponsored by Safe Kids East Central, are offered by appointment at either the Safe Kids Office or MartinezColumbia Fire Rescue. Call 706-7217606 or visit georgiahealth.org/safekids. Joint Efforts, presented by Trinity Hospital of Augusta, meets every Thursday from 11-11:45 a.m. at Augusta Bone and Joint, and features a free seminar about knee and hip pain, treatments, medication, food and exercise. Call 706481-7604 or visit trinityofaugusta.com. Infant CPR Anytime Learning Program will be held Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. at the first floor information desk (west entrance) of Georgia Health Sciences University. Visit georgiahealth.edu. Heart Attack and Stroke Prevention Orientation is every Monday at 6 p.m. and Tuesday at 2 p.m. at University Hospital’s Heart & Vascular Institute (Classroom 3). Call 706-774-5548 or visit universityhealth.org.
Alzheimer’s Disease Support Group meets Thursday, March 15, at 3 p.m. at Westwood Nursing Facility in Evans. Call 706-8637514 or visit universityhealth.org. Young Women with Breast Cancer support group meets Friday, March 16, at 12:30
p.m. at University Hospital. Call 706-7744141 or visit universityhealth.org.
9351 or visit georgiahealth.org.
Prostate Cancer Support Group meets Tuesday, March 20, at 6 p.m. at GHSU’s Cancer Center. Call 706-721-0550 or visit georgiahealth.org.
Career and Graduate School Fair is Thursday, March 15, from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. at Paine College’s Peters Campus Center. Free and open to the public. Call 706821-8307 or visit paine.edu.
Prostate Cancer Support Group meets Tuesday, March 20, at 7 p.m. at Augusta Tech’s building 600, room 612. Call 706868-8758 or visit universityhealth.org. Blood Cancer/BMT Support Group meets Wednesday, March 21, at 11:30 a.m. at GHSU’s Cancer Center. Call 706-721-9134, 706-721-1634 or visit georgiahealth.org. Trauma Support Group meets Wednesday, March 21, at noon at GHSU’s Medical Center. Call 706-721-4633, 706721-3264 of visit georgiahealth.org. Spine Education and Support Group meets Wednesday, March 21, at 1 p.m. at University Hospital’s Levi Hill III Auditorium. Call 706-774-2760 or visit universityhealth.org. Burn Support Group meets every Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. at Doctors Hospital (Lori Rogers Nursing Library, JMS Building). All burn survivors, and their families and friends are welcome. Call Tim Dorn at 706-651-6660 or visit doctors-hospital.net. Moms Connection, a free support group for new mothers and their babies, meets Tuesdays from 1-2 p.m. at Georgia Health Sciences Building 1010C. Call 706-721-
Social Security: Understanding the Benefits, a free education session with Social Security Public Affairs Specialist Tony Williams, is Thursday, March 15, at 10 a.m. at the Aiken Library. Call 803642-2020 or visit abbe-lib.org Intro to Computers Class is Thursday, March 15, at 6 p.m. at the Wallace Branch Library. Call 706-722-6275 or visit ecgrl.org. Word for Beginners is Friday, March 16, at 10 a.m. at the Columbia County Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-863-1946 or visit ecgrl.org. Facebook and Twitter for Beginners is Friday, March 16, at 2 p.m. at the Columbia County Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-863-1946 or visit ecgrl.org. Dave Ramsey Live Simulcast will be shown Saturday, March 17, at 12:45 p.m. at the Kroc Center. Pre-registration for the event, from the author of the Financial Peace University series, is preferred and tickets, $39, include a workbook. Boxed lunch and childcare are also available. Call 706-364-KROC or visit krocaugusta.org.
Online Applications, part of the Let’s Get a Job series, is Tuesday, March 20, at 10 a.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library. Call 706-821-2600 or visit ecgrl.org. Exploring the Mind, the Body and the Soul, presented by a philosophy students symposium as part of ASU’s Philosophy Lecture Series, is Tuesday, March 20, at 2:30 p.m. in Allgood Hall’s N126. Free. Call 706-737-1709 or visit aug.edu. Open Lab Computer Class is Wednesday, March 21, at the Headquarters Branch Library. PINES card required. Call 706821-2600 or visit ecgrl.org. Sic Semper Tyrannis, a lecture on Julius Caesar’s assassination and how it compares to more modern events in American history such as Lincoln’s assassination and the Oklahoma City bombing, is Thursday, March 22, and Sunday, March 25, at 2 p.m. at ASU’s Maxwell Performing Arts Theatre before the 3 p.m. showings of William Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar.” Free. Call 706-737-1500 or visit aug.edu. Estate and Tax Planning education sessions, offered by USC-Aiken and led by Aiken attorneys Bill Tucker and Buzz Rich, are Thursday, March 22, and Tuesday, March 27, at 4:30 p.m. in the conference room of the Pickens-Salley House. Pre-registration required by March 19. Call 803-643-6865 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. ARTS Regional Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan public meetings will be held Thursday, March 22, from 5-7 p.m. at
Cremation is not as expensive as you think.
$995 Pre-pay for a complete Direct Cremation V. 23 | NO. 11
706.798.8886 for details METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 19
the Evans Government Center auditorium and on Wednesday, March 28, from 5-7 p.m. at Aiken Tech’s amphitheater in building 700. The plan seeks to improve biking and walking conditions in Augusta and Aiken. Open to the public. Visit bikewalkarts.com. Intro to Internet Class is Thursday, March 22, at 6 p.m. at the Wallace Branch Library. Call 706-722-6275 or visit ecgrl.org. Applications are now begin accepted for Leadership Columbia County’s Class of 2013. Deadline for applications is Thursday, April 19, at 5 p.m. Call 706-651-0018 or visit columbiacountychamber.com. Work Networking Group is held each Monday from 8:30-10 a.m. at Grace United Methodist Church in North Augusta. A networking and informational meeting for anyone looking for a job, the group meets in room 206 of the Asbury Building and is facilitated by career and business professionals. Call 803-279-7525 or email email@example.com. GED classes are offered every Monday and Thursday at 6 p.m. and every Monday-Thursday at 9:30 a.m. at the Headquarters Branch Library (Third Floor Writing Lab). PINES library card required. Call Charles Garrick at 803279-3363 or visit ecgrl.org. Computer classes are offered every Thursday at 6 p.m. at the Wallace Branch Library. Call 706-722-6275 or visit ecgrl.org.
Book Drive of new and slightly used books for K5-5th grade reading levels, which will be donated to local public school libraries, will be held through March 31 at Gerald Jones Mazda Mitsubishi. Visit geraldjonesmazda.com. Karma Yoga is offered at Just Breathe Studio, downtown Aiken, each Friday at 10 a.m. and is free if participants bring a donation of a personal item, which will be given to the Cumbee Center to Assist Abused Persons. Call 803-648-8048 or visit justbreathestudio.com.
Road Bike Ride meets each Thursday at 6:30 p.m. at Andy Jordan’s Bicycle Warehouse downtown for an approximately 25-mile ride at a moderate to fast pace. Front and rear lights, as well as a helmet, are required. Call 706724-6777 or visit andyjordans.com.
The Harlem Globetrotters’ 2012 World Tour stops at the James Brown Arena Friday, March 16, at 7 p.m. $22-$80. Call 877-4AUGTIX or visit georgialinatix.com.
Zumba with Sohailla is every Saturday from 10-11 a.m. at the Ballroom Dance Center in Evans. Call 706-421-6168 or visit zumbawithsohailla.blogspot.com.
Augusta RiverHawks vs. Columbus Cottonmouths is Saturday, March 17, at 7:35 p.m. a the James Brown Arena. $10-$18. Call 877-4AUGTIX or visit georgialinatix.com.
Civil War 150th Anniversary Petersburg Boat Tours are Saturdays at 10 a.m. and Sundays at 1:30 and 4:30 p.m. This one-hour tour explores the role the canal played during the war. $12.50. Visit augustacanal.com.
Intermediate Spanish Language Class is each Monday from 2:30-4 p.m. at Friedman Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-736-6758 or visit ecgrl.org.
Augusta Canal Boat Tours lasting one hour are offered Monday-Saturday at 10 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m., and Sunday at 1:30, 3 and 4:30 p.m. All tours include admission to the Augusta Canal Interpretive Center. Call 706-8230440 or visit augustacanal.com.
20th Annual Art Patchin Jr. Celebration is Thursday, March 15, at 6 p.m. at The Richmond on Greene. A benefit for the endowment named after this cancer patient, the event features testimonies, auction items, prize drawings, food and
Riverview Disc Golf League meets each Thursday at 6 p.m. at Riverview Park in North Augusta. $5 entry fee and $1 ace pool. Call 803-215-8181 or visit augustadiscgolf.com.
Georgia Master Naturalist Program, a 10-week series for those who want to become more informed about the state’s natural resources, begins Thursday, March 15, at 4 p.m. at Phinizy Swamp Nature Park. Pre-registration required. $260, members; $300, nonmembers. Call 706-828-2109 or visit naturalsciencesacademy.org.
Wheelchair Tennis is each Monday at 6 p.m., weather permitting, at the Club at Rae’s Creek. Free and open to the public. Call 706826-5809 or visit firstname.lastname@example.org.
helmet. Call 706-855-2024 or visit chainreactionbicycles.net.
Guided Trail Rides at Hilltop Riding Stables at Fort Gordon are available Saturdays at 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m., noon, 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m.; Sundays at 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and noon; and WednesdayFriday at 11 a.m. with reservations 24 hours in advance. All trail rides are on a first-come, first-served basis, and participants should arrive 30 minutes prior to the trail ride starting for sign in procedures. $23-$30. Call 706-7914864 or visit fortgordon.com.
ESL classes are offered every Wednesday at 6 p.m. at Headquarters Branch Library (Third Floor Writing Lab). Pre-registration required. Call Charles Garrick at 803-2793363 or visit ecgrl.org.
Beginner’s Spanish Language Class is each Monday from 4-5 p.m. at Friedman Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-736-6758 or visit ecgrl.org.
20 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
drinks and more. $50 per person; $75, couples. Call 706-667-0030 or visit universityhealth.org.
The Augusta Fencers Club is open five nights a week from 5:30-9 p.m. and most Saturday mornings from 10 a.m.-noon. Visitors always welcome. Call 706-722-8878. Thursday Night Chain Reaction Ride begins at 6 p.m. each Thursday at Patriots Park in Grovetown. For intermediate to fast-paced cyclists, who average 25-32 miles. Participants should bring their own water and
Saturday Historic Trolley Tours are Saturdays from 1-4:15 p.m. at the Augusta Museum of History. Reservations required 24 hours in advance. $12. Call 706-724-4067 or visit augustamuseum.org. Lakeside Rideouts at Hilltop Riding Stables at Fort Gordon are each Sunday beginning at 1:30 p.m. on a first-come, first-served basis. The ride, which begins at 2 p.m., is a two-hour guided ride to Wilkerson Lake. $45-$50. Call 706-7914864 or visit fortgordon.com. Yoga Class at Euchee Creek Branch Library meets every Tuesday at 4 p.m. Call 706-556-0594 or visit ecgrl.org. Nacho Mama’s Group Run is each Wednesday at 5:30 p.m. and features food and drinks afterwards. Three- and fourmile routes are available for all ages and V. 23 | NO. 11
A local lady needs our vote to sell her product at Wal-Mart. Her Cards are based on biblical texts. You can vote daily, visit:
getontheshelf.com/product/2597/Sentidos-del-corazon Text your vote: 2597 to 383838 (free of charge)
1st voting - March 7th - April 3rd 2nd voting - April 11th - April 24th
Thank you for your Vote.
TABLE of CONTENTS
- A REVOLUTION IN WATER SPORTS
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- NO BEACH NEEDED
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- OUT AT THE LAKE
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- GOLD’S GYM: IN IT TO LOSE IT
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- THE WATER UNDER OUR FEET
- DO THE DINKER
14 COVER DESIGN | KRUHU One of the perks of doing what we do is we get to do what we want, how we want, when we want to. And we wanted to create a magazine focusing on living life with passion. Everyone you will meet in these pages is passionate about something real. That’s interesting to us. Hopefully you as well.
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MARCH 2012 ELEMENTS
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
WaterSPORTS A Revolution in
Stand up paddleboarding takes the best of wave surfing and puts it in our own back yard
The first time you see someone on a stand up paddleboard, you pretty much think you’ve lost your mind. From a distance, it can look as if the person is walking on water, and getting closer only confuses the issue. Surfers are supposed to have waves, not paddles. And they’re sure as heck aren’t supposed to be in places like the Savannah River or the Augusta Canal. “Stand up paddleboarding is all the good parts of wave surfing with none of the negatives,” says Chuck Hardin, a stand up paddleboard instructor who just may have been the first person in Augusta to participate in the sport. “It sounds too good to be true, but it really is.” Hardin’s been stand up paddleboarding since 2007, and though he knows it’s hardly a household sport, he’s seen its popularity explode in recent years, in part because it’s so easy to learn. “I think the thing that has driven the growth and the enthusiasm of it is the simplicity of it at a time when so many things are so complicated,” he says. “There’s a paddle and there are no other moving parts. It’s just putting the board on some water and then paddling — you can’t help but love it.” Though the sport may be relatively new, people have been doing it since the early days of surfing. “People were getting on a surfboard and using a paddle 70 or 80 years ago to be better able to see when they were teaching or if there were things in the water,” he says. “But it was looked down upon in Hawaii and California until 1998 or 1999, when the most famous surfer of all, Laird Hamilton, wanted to quit using jet skis to catch the really, really big waves.” Once Hamilton got out the paddle, what had previously been considered nerdy became an overnight sensation. “Now, stand up paddleboarding outsells traditional surfboards, which is unbelievable when you think how big that industry is,” Hardin says. In case you’re wondering, the Surf Industry Manufacturer’s Association says it’s easily a billion-dollar industry. Though similar in size to a traditional Hawaiian long board, a stand up paddleboard is lighter and thicker. Consequently, the cost of a board can be relatively steep, ranging from $900 to $1,200 for a basic model and much more for a specialty racing board. “Even though a quality stand up paddleboard is not cheap, it’s the most efficient dollar you’ll ever spend in water sports,” Hardin says. “There are so many ways and so many places where you can use it, and everybody in your world can ride a stand up paddleboard after the first day.” It’s as easy as riding a bike, he says Which brings us to the whole balance thing. Hardin, who’s also a yoga instructor, says that contrary to regular surfing, you really don’t need that much of it. In fact, he says you don’t really need any special skills at all. Though just about everyone starts out wobbly, eight out of 10 first timers stay dry. Ten out of 10 end the day with smiles on their faces. “It’s not unusual that I see the shakiest and most timid people being the
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
ones who are the most excited about that first experience, because they’re the ones who are so sure these kinds of things just don’t fit with them very well,” he says. “It’s sort of like the worse you think your balance and athleticism is in relation to something like this, the more confidence you feel.” The instruction portion of a typical lesson for someone who has never done it before is 15 to 20 minutes, he says. The rest of the two-hour lesson is just paddling around and enjoying being on the water. Through his company, Whitecap Stand Up Paddleboarding, Hardin teaches local classes in the canal, on the Savannah and on Clarks Hill, and while the big water of the lake might seem more dramatic, he says most favor the intimacy of the other bodies. “Definitely, the canal and the river are more interesting than the lake, because the lake is so wide open that your view doesn’t change,” he says. And while people occasionally question why someone would rather stand on a paddleboard than sit in a kayak, Hardin says it usually only takes once on a board to answer it. “That three or four additional feet you’re up off the water
compared to a kayak radically transforms the experience of being on the water,” he says. “It changes what you can see in the distance, what you can see in the water, and you’re much more engaged.”
ERICJOHNSON ELEMENTS MARCH 2012
noBEACH Canal offers plenty of recreational opportunities
Spring is in the air and, in the South, that generally means, “head to the nearest body of water and try to keep cool!” While Augusta may not have a beach to run to, it does have one water feature not found in most cities — a canal that is designated as a National Heritage Area. Not only does The Augusta Canal have a fancy moniker assigned to it by Congress, but it’s also a place for recreational activities, such as hiking and biking on the towpath, or kayaking and canoeing the canal’s first level, which extends from the Headgates at Savannah Rapids Park, all the way down to 13th Street. Some kayakers may be tempted to paddle through downtown on the second and third levels; however, canal officials do not recommend it. According to the canal’s website: “The canal’s second and third levels in the downtown area have man-made obstructions, may contain debris and have unpredictable water flows. These areas are hazardous to boaters.” Don’t own a canoe or kayak but would like to paddle the canal anyway? No problem. You can rent one from several third party vendors, such as Broadway Tackle & Canoe Rentals, RiverCat Kayaks, and Escape Outdoors. For more
information, visit the FAQ page on the Augusta Canal’s website (augustacanal.com). The canal’s third level has only recently been reopened. The third level, which runs from the mid-block of Seventh Street and past the new Augusta Judicial Center to 12th Street, was re-watered on Friday, February 10, and took approximately 12 hours to complete. The canal’s third level had been the site of a coal gas plant during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. An extensive environmental remediation project undertaken by Atlanta Gas Light Company from 2001 to 2007 removed any residual contamination and lined this portion of the canal with concrete. According to Rebecca Rogers, the marketing director for the Augusta Canal, “The re-watering of the third level was meant to create a water feature as part of the effort to enhance downtown. It is intended to become a small pedestrian park.” This new park will consist of a multiuse trail, which will include a walking trail, benches and interpretive signs explaining Atlanta Gas Light’s role in the third level clean-up and other significant historic sites and events. Another project that Rogers was excited to mention is the
special new tour added for Masters Week that was created specifically to celebrate Augusta’s golf heritage. “After Amen Corner: Augusta’s Golf Heritage” runs April 5-7 and is a guided tour aboard an Augusta Canal Petersburg Tour Boat through Lake Olmstead, the scenic small lake fed by the waters of famous Rae’s Creek, which flows through the Augusta National Golf Club along the back of the 11th green, in front of the 12th green and ahead of the 13th tee. The Augusta Canal National Heritage Area is more than just a recreational park. It is a rich part of Augusta’s history. Built in 1845, the canal has been in constant use since then. It was a source of hydro-mechanical power to many factories and mills in the 19th century, and later in the 20th century it provided hydro-electrical power. The canal also has a long history of being Augusta’s main source for drinking water, and continues to serve in that capacity today. For more information about the history of The Augusta Canal National Heritage Area, volunteer opportunities or special events, visit augustacanal.com.
VALERIEEMERICK MARCH 2012 ELEMENTS
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
Lake at the
Call it what you will, the big lake produces
Though Augusta itself is most directly touched by the Savannah River and the Augusta Canal, the Strom Thurmond Dam is sort of like the gates to the Emerald City. Twenty-two miles above Augusta, the massive structure generates power, holds back flood waters and doles out the amount of water that can be used by our downstream neighbors. Because it has so many constituents requiring so much from it in so many different capacities, there is a widespread feeling among these competing interests that the U.S. Corps of Engineers, the group that manages the dam, its outflow and the lake behind it, falls short. Throw in a persistent and lingering drought to up the ante, and you’ve got a recipe for almost universal discontent. The lake is too shallow. The outflow is too weak — if you’ve lived here long enough, you’ve heard just about
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
every complaint you can think of. The largest Corps of Engineers project east of the Mississippi, Thurmond Lake (originally — and often still — called Clark Hill and officially renamed the Strom Thurmond Lake in 1988) was built between 1946 and 1954 as part of a larger plan for the Savannah River system. Along with Lakes Hartwell and Russell, Thurmond Lake is managed as part of an integrated system, though being the last in the line, it is the primary flood control structure for the Savannah River. Each of the dam’s generators produces between 52,000 and 57,000 kilowatts of electricity. More to the point — one generator operating for one hour can produce enough electricity to power 216 average homes for an entire year. Though the lake’s 71,000 acres and 1,200 miles of shoreline have made it a destination for outdoor
recreation since its inception, it really wasn’t until 1986 that Congress officially recognized recreation as an authorized purpose, and while as purposes go it ranks pretty far down on the list, it nevertheless provides a variety of recreational opportunities. While the Corps itself operates 13 campgrounds around the lake, there are several state and county parks along its shores, including Mistletoe State Park in McDuffie County and Columbia County’s 975-acre Wildwood Park, which represents the county’s major outdoor recreation destination. According to Community and Leisure Services Director Barry Smith, Columbia County has been leasing the park for the Corps of Engineers since 1976. Recently, the county renewed its lease through 2034, and within the next month or two it’s planning to request another 25-year extension. ELEMENTS MARCH 2012
Those extensions are important to the county because commissioners have invested considerable resources into upgrading the park, including adding the mega boat ramps, a disc golf facility and several picnic pavilions and riding trails. “We’re hoping to do some cabins up there,” Smith says. “That way we can capture overnight stays when we have these events at the park.” Those events include a full schedule of yearly fishing tournaments, state and national disc golf events as well as more traditional park uses. And while the entrance fees actually allow the park to make money over the course of the year, the county
continues to leverage the events it hosts in order to provide a community-wide economic impact. The larger fishing tournaments, for example, can be worth up to $700,000 to the local economy. Though Wildwood’s mega ramps allow it to host top flight fishing tournaments, there are more than 40 smaller boat ramps along the lake as well as six commercial marinas, one of which is under new ownership. In addition, Fort Gordon operates its own recreation area, with cabins, cottages, motel suites, a conference center, campsites, two boat landings and a marina. No one will argue that the current drought has been
tough on the lake, leaving docks out of the water, unattended boats sitting on the hardened bottom and boaters nervous about obstructions, but no matter how low it gets and how frustrated its users become, it will continue to be a cornerstone of the area’s recreational economy.
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MARCH 2012 ELEMENTS
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
Fit to Be Gold Challenge kicks off next phase
IN IT TO
Phase 4 of the Fit to Be Gold Challenge pits 19 competitors against each other in a head-to-head showdown to see who can shed the most percentage of body fat. Though they’re competing for $1,500 in total prizes, this challenge takes a page out of Erk Russell’s Big Team, Little Me playbook by rewarding community support. Not only will the participants be emailing each other encouragement throughout the challenge, at the end of the competition everyone will have a chance to vote for who they considered the most supportive. That person will win a $500 gift certificate to Windsor Jewelers. Over the course of the next 12 weeks, the Metro Spirit will be following the competitors as they sweat, swear and strive for the finish line. This week, we introduce the Phase 4 Fit to Be Gold Challenge competitors:
Retired accountant Brenda Guillebeau decided to focus on her fitness when a trip to the doctor yielded unexpected results. “About three months ago I was diagnosed with diabetes, and I want to control it without medication,” she says. “They suggested diet and exercise, so that’s pretty powerful motivation for me.” Guillebeau admits she’s always struggled with her weight and has never really been successful at getting rid of it. “I just can’t do it myself,” she says. “So I really appreciate the help.”
For motivation, executive assistant Nancy Wilson needs only to look in her closet. “I have a closet full of size twos and threes that I’ve been trying to get back into over the last five years,” she says. “I’ve gained 30 pounds since I was a size two.” Besides that, the extra weight has caused her blood pressure to inch up, and while it’s not yet critical, it’s given her food for thought. “It’s going to take a lot of focus,” she says. “But if I don’t win — if I just lose 20 or 25 pounds — that’ll be a good start. I don’t like myself heavy.”
Katie Schweitzer, a library assistant in Augusta, wants to try the Gold’s program because she doesn’t get support at home. “Motivation is just not really something I get at home with my family because we all eat and have very little activity,” she says. The idea of having help with her goal is one of the main reasons she’s so enthusiastic about the competition. “I’ve been trying to lose weight on my own and I haven’t been having much luck,” she says. “Both my parents passed away when they were really young, and I worried that I’m also going to because of poor health habits.” Though she’s not necessarily competitive, she’s looking forward to the idea of going through the program with others. “It’s hard to do it on your own,” she says. “So I figure if I have some motivation, I’ll be more likely to stick to it.”
Bobby Burch has been down this road before, and it’s giving him the motivation to do it again. “I’ve lost 50 pounds before, but then I just put 30 of it back on again,” he says. The 56 year-old works for the city of Aiken and he knows he’s never going to be able to jump and do high impact physical activities again — his neck is bothering him and he’s had a knee replaced — but he’s looking forward to being able to do his everyday chores without the effort. Whatever he loses this time, he vows to keep it off. “When I went down to 250, I was so happy that I just kind of celebrated and got off track,” he says. “Losing the pounds was one thing, but when I put a size 38 pair of jeans on, that’s when it felt good. Unfortunately, it didn’t last long. I’m back up to a 42.”
Tamilyn Walker calls herself a classic yoyo dieter. “I may have lost 20 pounds, but then I gained back 40,” she says. “I’ve been starting and stopping for as long as I can remember.” A certified clinical hemodialysis technician, Walker would like to serve as an inspiration to others like herself. “There’s probably a yoyo dieter like me who will be watching, and if I’m successful, maybe that could help that person avoid health issues,” she says. “I think it’s a good thing.”
Real Estate appraiser Tom Davis has never tried anything like this, other than the time a bunch of his friends got together and decided to lose a little weight by quitting drinking beer for awhile. The most you ever lose doing that is about 10 pounds, he says, and after having three heart stints, he’s ready to lose more… and lose it for good. “I need to have a structured environment,” he says. “I have my own business, and nobody’s going to do it but me.” And then there are the grandchildren. He wants to make sure he’s around to play with them and watch them grow up. Though he says he likes the idea of competing for money, he also says he’s interested in learning the proper lifestyle choices needed to keep the weight off. “One of the reasons I’m in the physical shape I’m in is because I sacrificed myself for my business,” he says.
According to Myeshia Palmer, a medical assistant at GHSU, being successful at weight loss is all about finding the time to do the things necessary to live a healthy lifestyle. “I always made excuses like ‘I just got off work — I’m tired,’” she says. “I was just not making time. But I have the time, I just need to learn to use the time I have.” The big motivator for her — possibly having sleep apnea. “I know that if I don’t get the weight down, I might have to sleep with this machine,” she says. “It’s a frightening thing to know you actually stop breathing at night. My fear is that my children wake up to get me in the morning and find me dead.”
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Nicole Graddick is a student at Augusta Tech, and she wants to be a good role model for her two children. “It’s hard,” she admits. “Trying to plan a workout schedule when I have them isn’t easy. I think this opportunity right here will really help me.” While she enjoys the idea of the competition, she knows the ultimate goal shouldn’t be winning the money. “If I lose the competition, I’m okay with that because I lost weight, and that’s what matters,” she says. “It’s hard to push yourself, and that’s why I like the competition. There’s actually someone pushing you.”
For Registered Nurse Sue Buzhardt, the most attractive aspect of the challenge is the idea of increasing her strength and endurance. She’s lost weight before, but she’s never managed to keep it off. “What’s been missing is the fitness piece,” she says. “When I read about it, that’s really what encouraged me to go ahead and do it.” Because that fitness piece has been missing in her previous attempts, she’s a little nervous about how she’s going to handle the workout regimen. And then there’s the time factor. “Balancing a full-time job and a family and this might be a little bit of a challenge,” she says. “But it’s certainly helping me make the commitment.”
ELEMENTS MARCH 2012
LOSE IT Eric Johnson
MARCH 2012 ELEMENTS
Eddie Williams IV is a computer programmer who has lost weight before, just not all the weight he wanted to. “I used to weigh 432 and I got down to 260,” he says. “But when I got to 260, I kind of hit a plateau.” Part of the struggle comes from the fact that he’s a diabetic, and he thinks the main benefit will come from the built-in accountability that comes from working with others. “People are going to be monitoring you,” he says. “It gives me the motivation to stay on top of it. When I saw the advertisement, I thought this was going to be a great opportunity.”
This is the third attempt stay at home mom Francis Leger has made at losing a significant amount of weight, and while she’s been successful at losing it, she’s always gained it back. “After my third child and after my stepmom passed away from complications from diabetes, I decided it was time to make the commitment again,” she says. This time, she feels the competitive aspect will give her the edge she needs.“It will give me an excuse to give to my family about why I’m in it,” she says.
Typris Hill admits her self-esteem is tied to her weight. “I really want to lose the weight so I can look in the mirror and be happy and go into a clothing store and be able to fit into something,” she says. “I’m the only one in my family that’s big, so hopefully I can get to the size that I want and be happy again.” She’s been ready for a change, but says that in spite of her desire to lose the weight, she lacked the drive to make it happen, which is something she hopes to reverse with by competing in the challenge.
Small business owner Rob Forbes has not only lost the weight before, he’s kept it off for several years. But after being laid off in 2008, he started his own business, and the long days ended up taking their toll. “I don’t want to blame it on that, but that’s kind of the turning point,” he says. “Once you start sliding, it gets harder and harder to get back.” Maybe more than most, Forbes knows how tough the battle ahead will be. “Everyone who wants to lose weight has to be honest,” he says. “They have to go into it with the understanding that it’s hard. I’m not looking forward to the hard work of getting there, but I am looking forward to getting there.”
Student Sowande Readus has an active one-year-old son, she’s overweight and asthma and diabetes runs on both sides of her family. What more motivation does she need? “I’ve always been kind of big for my height, and I feel like yes — it’s time for a change.” Readus is excited about both the competition and the chance to dedicate herself to diet and exercise, something she’s never attempted before. “I never tried it before because I knew I wouldn’t go through with it,” she says. “I just needed some motivation, and I feel this is a good type of motivation for me.”
James Luca is unemployed and tired of feeling old at 24, which seemed to make the timing of the challenge perfect. “I’ve had a problem self motivating,” says Luca, who’s 6’6. “I haven’t done any programs like this before, so I’m hoping this one keeps me motivated.” He does have gym experience, however. He worked at a gym in high school, though he says he was more associated in the promotional end of the business, he says he’s looking forward to losing the weight.
When it comes to reasons to commit to healthier living, perhaps no one has more reasons than Jerry Price, who has 13 children. “Seven girls first, then six boys,” he says. “I didn’t plan to have that many, but I didn’t plan not to, either.” Price, who owns a construction company, didn’t like what he saw in the mirror — and he didn’t like getting winded tying his shoes — so he decided he was ready to work with a personal trainer and hold himself accountable. “I just want to feel better, and I’m looking forward to getting healthy — and staying that way.”
There’s one thing wrecker driver Terry Wilkins says he knows for sure — he doesn’t know the first thing about losing weight. “I want to learn,” he says. “If I can learn, I can make time, but I don’t know how to start to eat good or how to work out. I just want someone to show me the right way.” A father of two young boys, Wilkins says the energy he’ll gain from being healthier is a big motivator. “I’ve never really been in shape,” he says. “But my boys are growing up and I need to be able to hang with them.”
When promotions assistant Sean Kinzler weighed in at 300 pounds, he decided it was time to get to the gym and start working out. That was a month ago and he’s already lost 21 pounds. A typical guy, he says his diet has always been to eat what he wanted and to try to work it off later. Not surprisingly, that wasn’t a very effective strategy. “I tried exercising a little, but I would always let it go,” he says. “This is the first time I’ve taken it seriously. The cash prize is nice, but being healthy is even better.”
Chelsie Lee and her mother are planning on participating in the two-day Avon Walk, in which participants walk a full marathon on the first day and a half marathon on the second. “We both realize that we need to lose some weight or else we’re going to do some serious damage to our knees and our bodies,” she says. This isn’t her first time working with a personal trainer. Lee says she hired one to get herself in shape for her wedding, but after losing 30 pounds in three months, she put it right back on. “I know it can be done, and I’ll have to push harder, especially if I want to win,” she says. “But I do know it can be done.”
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
retaining wall at BMW
10 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
ELEMENTS MARCH 2012
THEWater Under Our Feet
Our love/hate relationship with the water below
Given the fact that we’ve been operating under a drought for the last several years, most of us are used to thinking about water in relation to our shriveledup lawns and our dried-up bodies of water. And while there’s no denying the drought’s devastation, a different but interrelated world of water exists beneath our feet. To ecologists, it’s a valuable and impressive part of the ecosystem, while to property owners and the contractors they hire defend against it, it can be a powerful and damaging foe. Anyone who has ever suffered foundation problems or had cascading runoff cut through their back yard is familiar with the destructive power of water. Though ecologists and contractors often work at cross purposes (unplanned and misdirected development pretty much top the list of the perils ecologists see in our relationship with the natural world around us), both have a working knowledge of the strength and authority of water. Dr. Donna Wear, a biology professor at Augusta State University, says the water that’s beneath our feet is a pure byproduct of the natural process involving the earth and the atmosphere. “When precipitation slowly percolates through the soil, there are lots of bacteria and fungi that remove any impurities that happen to be in the water,” she says. As the water continues down the soil layers, it eventually reaches what’s called the water table. By the time it gets down there, there’s no more biological activity to be done. The water is basically purified, though some minerals could be added to it, since an aquifer is really a geologic unit. “A lot of people have a misconception that it’s an underground lake,” Wear says. “It’s not. There’s a lot of rock material down there.” The water down there, known as groundwater, flows with gravity, so as we start pulling it up and applying it to our surface uses, more water flows in to take its place. How long it takes to get down there depends in large part on the type of soil, since the type of soil can make a big difference in the way water flows. Cliff Russell, president of Action Landscape Construction, deals with MARCH 2012 ELEMENTS
two types of water — stormwater and groundwater. Both can be destructive to a home, business or tract of land. Stormwater’s destructive power comes mostly from velocity, but when it comes to groundwater, the red Georgia clay can be a complicating factor. “As the water is underground, it’s moving along a path of least resistance,” Russell says. “It could be a vein of dirt of a different composition. It’s frustrating for the homeowner and the contractor.” Clay, he says, is particularly susceptible to developing fissures, which can guide that wandering water 50 or 60 feet from a neighbor’s property. Such a fissure can be very narrow and therefore difficult to find, which is why when it comes to groundwater issues, guarantees are as difficult to provide as the solutions are expensive. “You’re digging three feet left and three feet right, and it’s dry,” Russell says. When that underground water starts interacting with a building, it can cause a variety of damages. And while there’s no exact recipe to divert the water away from the structure, solutions almost always involve digging, which can destructive and costly all on its own. “You can protect a dwelling by digging a French drain around the house,” Russell says. “With that process, you go all the way down to the footing and you flash the footing. Then you go back with a pipe. The water follows it off and goes somewhere it won’t cause problems.” The fact that we’re constructing more and more buildings means these issues are becoming more frequent, and the fact that these buildings are covering so much space is altering the natural filtration system Wear speaks about. Not only does growth dramatically increase the density of our demands on the water resource (more people drinking from the same water supply), the addition of pavement and parking lots reduces the area available to absorb the rainwater when it falls, which in turn reduces the speed with which the water supply is replenished. Also, growth is increasingly intruding into our wetlands, which impacts the groundwater by depriving it of the best filtering parts of the land and by diverting water in directions it wouldn’t naturally go. METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 11
retaining wall behind Goolsby’s
“That’s why being so far behind in rainfall is so troubling,” Wear says. “We can get a nice deluge, but with all the pavement and concrete, instead of that water actually becoming nature’s natural capital, it becomes runoff water, which gets dislocated. By not having that water where it’s supposed to be, we’re essentially not allowing it to do what it’s supposed to do.” Sometimes we also shoehorn development into areas where it’s a really tight fit, in which case people like Russell work with landscaping devices like retaining walls in order to keep the water and the land away from buildings. Sometimes, however, those walls fail, like the ones in front of Academy Sports and by the apartments on Alexander Drive. If they’re not constructed properly, the sheer weight of the dirt behind a wall can combine with the pressure of the
12 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
busted wall at ACE Hardware water to cause a wall to fail. When Russell talks about the engineering of a retaining wall, the numbers are staggering. The wall behind Goolsbys in Evans, for example, stands 27 feet tall and it’s a quarter of a mile
long. Making a wall that size gets him talking about things like stable wedges, which may be ancient engineering, but when it comes to the stability of a wall, it’s tough to argue with them, though in some cases developers have tried by
adding additional height to a wall. “When you’ve created this pretty stable block and then you’re going to stand up another huge unstable block on top of that, it’s not good,” Russell says. “In most cases, the wall just topples.”
ELEMENTS MARCH 2012
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METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 13
14 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
ELEMENTS MARCH 2012
abilities of runners. Call 706-414-4059 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Hott Shott Disc Golf is each Wednesday at 7 p.m. at Killer B Disc Golf, 863 Broad Street, and features games and prizes for all ages and skill levels. $2. Call 706-814-7514 or visit killerbdiscgolf. blogspot.com/p/hott-shott.
Go Green Craft Workshop, for kids ages 3-5, is Thursday, March 15, at 11 a.m. at the Appleby Branch Library. Call 706736-6244 or visit ecgrl.org. Qualifying Rounds for the Hunger Games Tournament, for ages 12-18, continue on Friday, March 16, at 2 p.m. at the Diamond Lakes Library. Participants will compete in a Training Days board game, and refreshments will be provided. Preregistration required. Visit ecgrl.org. Pond Exploration, a program for those ages 5 and up, is Friday, March 16, at 4:30 p.m. at Reed Creek Park. Children must be accompanied by an adult and pre-registration is required. Free, members; $2 per child, nonmembers. Call 706-210-4027 or visit reedcreekpark.com. Mission to Mars shows Saturday, March 17, at 7 and 8 p.m. at USCAiken’s DuPont Planetarium. $1-$4.50. Reservations recommended. Call 803641-3654 or visit http://rpsec.usca.edu/ planetarium. Pirate and Princess Tea Party is Tuesday, March 20, at 3:45 p.m. at Fort Gordon’s Woodworth Library. For children of all ages, it includes stories, dressing up and a tea party. Pre-registration required. Call 706-791-7323 or visit fortgordon.com. Stop Motion Animated Film, a teen program for those ages 12-18, is Tuesday, March 20, at 4 p.m. at the Columbia County Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-863-1946 or visit ecgrl.org.
Applications are now being accepting for Columbia County’s Youth Leadership Class of 2013. Applicants must be a rising sophomore or junior in the 2012-2013 school year, and applications are due Thursday, March 29, at 5 p.m. Call 706-651-0018 or visit columbiacountychamber.com. Art Comes to Life, a spring break camp at the Aiken Center for the Arts, is April 2-6 for campers ages 5-8. Full-day, $215, and half-day, $130, options available, with a 10 percent discount to center members. Pre-registration required. Call 803-641-9094 or visit aikencenterforthearts.org. Exercise Your Body and Mind Masters Week Camp, sponsored by MACH Academy, is Monday, April 2-Friday, April 6 from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at the Fleming Tennis Center, and includes instruction in science, math, creative writing, computer literacy, nutrition and healthy eating, tennis and fitness, and more. $100 per child, and includes lunch and supplies. Partial scholarships available for qualifying participants. Pre-registration required. Call 706-796-5046 or visit machacademy.com. Preschool Story Time is every Tuesday at Headquarters Branch Library at 10 a.m. Toddler Story Time is every Wednesday at 10 a.m. Group registration required. Call 706-821-2600 or visit ecgrl.org. Story Time is every Tuesday at 10 a.m. at Diamond Lakes Branch Library. Groups of six or more must pre-register. Call 706-772-2432 or visit ecgrl.org. Story Time is every Tuesday at 10 a.m. at Friedman Branch Library. Groups of six or more must pre-register. Call 706736-6758 or visit ecgrl.org. Story Time is every Wednesday at 10 a.m. at Maxwell Branch Library. Preregistration required. Call 706-7932020 or visit ecgrl.org.
Stories by Lucy Craft Laney Museum is Wednesday, March 21, at 10 a.m. at the Wallace Branch Library. Call 706-7226275 or visit ecgrl.org.
Story Time is every Wednesday from 10-11:15 a.m. at Wallace Branch Library. Pre-registration required. Call 706-7226275 or visit ecgrl.org.
Downloadable Books for Kids, a children’s program for those ages 8-11 who own a tablet, is Wednesday, March 21, at 1 p.m. and Thursday, March 22, at 5 p.m. at the Columbia County Library. Call 706-863-1946 or visit ecgrl.org.
Story Time is every Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. at Harlem Branch Library. Call 706556-9795 or visit ecgrl.org.
V. 23 | NO. 11
Ceramics Class, for ages 14 and up, meets Mondays at 9 a.m. or 6 p.m., Tuesdays at 6 p.m., and Wednesdays at METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 21
9 a.m. in the Weeks Ceramics Center. Call 803-642-7631 or visit cityofaikensc.gov. Toddler Time, free play for children ages 5 and under, is each Monday and Wednesday from 9:30-11:30 a.m. at the H.O. Weeks Center in Aiken. Call 803642-7631 or visit cityofaikensc.gov. Wacky Wednesday Story Time is each Wednesday at 10 a.m. in the children’s department of Barnes and Noble in the Augusta Mall. Call 706-737-0012 or visit bn.com. Story Time is every Wednesday at Appleby Branch Library from 10:0510:20 a.m. for toddlers 18 months-35 months, and from 10:30-11:15 a.m. for preschoolers ages 3 and up. Parent must stay with child. Call 706-736-6244 or visit ecgrl.org. Story Time is every Wednesday from 10:15-10:45 a.m. for Pre-K, and 11:3011:55 a.m. for toddlers at Aiken County Public Library. Call 803-642-2023 or visit abbe-lib.org.
Story Time is every Wednesday from 10:30-11 a.m. for toddlers and 11:15-
(actual size) 1.5” x 1.9” Tall $40 per week
22 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
11:45 a.m. for preschoolers at North Augusta Branch Library. Call 803-2795767 or abbe-lib.org.
Aiken on Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 10-11 a.m. Call 803-6427631 or visit cityofaikensc.gov.
Simple Cooking Class meets each Monday from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Kroc Center. Call 706-364-5762 or visit krocaugusta.org.
Yoga I and II are offered at the Weeks Center in Aiken on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays from 8:45-9:45 a.m. and on Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:306:30 p.m. Call 803-642-7631 or visit cityofaikensc.gov.
Games for Seniors at the Weeks Center in Aiken include Rummikub each Thursday from 9 a.m.-noon, Mahjong each Thursday from 1-4 p.m., Bridge each Friday from 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m., Bingo each Tuesday at 9 a.m., Pinochle each Tuesday from 10:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., and Canasta on Tuesdays and Fridays from 11:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Call 803-6427631 or visit cityofaikensc.gov. Silversneakers I is offered Mondays and Wednesdays at 9 a.m. and Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays at 11:15 a.m., while Silversneakers Yogastretch is offered Mondays and Wednesdays at 11:15 a.m. at the Weeks Center in Aiken. Call 803-6427631 or visit cityofaikensc.gov. Ceramics Class is offered at 9 a.m. on Mondays or Wednesdays and 6 p.m. on Mondays or Tuesdays at the Weeks Center. Call 803-642-7631 or visit cityofaikensc.gov. Fit 4 Ever is offered at the Weeks Center in
CSRA Writers will meet Monday, March 19, at 6:30 p.m. at the Martinez branch of Georgia Military College. Writers needing a support group are invited to attend and bring eight copies of a manuscript to be critiqued. Call 706-836-7315. Kris Fausenight of the local Augusta Cave Masters will be the guest speaker at this month’s Sierra Club meeting that will be held Tuesday, March 20, at 6:30 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Church’s meeting room. Open to the public. Email email@example.com. Crafters Night is each Monday from 6-8 p.m. at the Kroc Center. Call 706-3645762 or visit krocaugusta.org.
Augusta Public Library is looking for volunteers. Friends of the library receive a 10 percent discount at The Book Tavern, complimentary dessert at French Market Grille, one free Petersburg Boat Ride, free coffee and discounts at Sundrees Market, and bogo admission at the Woodrow Wilson House. Call 706821-2600 or visit ecgrl.org.
Thursday Nights at the High, a special event at the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, offers half price tickets from 4-8 p.m. each Thursday. A guided tour is offered at 6:30 p.m. Call 404-733-4200 or visit high.org.
If you would like to see your organization’s events listed in our calendar, please email Amy Christian at firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline for each Thursday’s issue is the previous Friday at noon.
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Kind of a bad week at the box office... for everyone except the Lorax, that is. RANK
DR. SEUSS’ THE LORAX
ACT OF VALOR
What’s going on in this sci-fi flick? Who the hell knows.
To dismiss “John Carter” as merely a story about a man who mysteriously is transported to Mars would be to pigeonhole it. Rather, it goes so much further. It’s also about a man who must win over a race of bug-like barbarians, arena-battle giant rampaging monsters, woo a brainiac princess with boffo thighs and tap magic talismans to scoot his way back to Earth. Also there’s a dog-monster that’s pretty cute. And maybe some emotions or something, too. Okay, so it’s just a mixtape of the space-barbarian tropes that have trickled into the culture since Edgar Rice Burroughs began publishing the original John Carter stories in 1912. At the time, Burroughs assumed a pen name for this pulp, underestimating his audience’s thirst for tales of love and war on the red planet. By now you’ve seen vestiges of “John Carter” permeating the culture for decades. If you’re going to enjoy this popcorn flick, then, you’ve got to appreciate it as a retro sci-fi fantasy, because the source material has been too thoroughly scavenged for it to feel original or even, alas, all that creative. The action opens in the 1880s, long before the advent of Mars rovers, as the balance between two warring factions on Mars is shifting. The rapacious city of Zodanga, led by Sab Than (Dominic West) allies with a group of ethereal floating monks to rout the peace-loving denizens of Helium. The only way out appears to be for Helium’s rulers to accept an arranged marriage between Than and the Helium princess Dejah Thoris (Lynn Collins). Perhaps there are better times to be accidentally transported to Mars, but it’s into this messy season that a Confederate veteran named John Carter (Taylor Kitsch of “Friday Night Lights” notoriety) is plunged when he stumbles into the wrong Arizona cave while prospecting/fleeing Union authorities. On Mars, Carter realizes, the skimpy gravity works greatly in his favor. Even V. 23 | NO. 11
compared with the race of green, four-armed, tusked Tharks who find and apprehend him, he’s ridiculously strong; he also jumps like a flea. With those particular talents Carter soon finds himself embroiled in Martian geopolitics. Mostly that involves Helium and Zodanga battling in dragonflyesque air ships, with Carter hopping from ship to ship. But even this setup gets murky. The gravest problem facing “John Carter” is the utter lack of explanation around the gravest threat facing John Carter. The celestial bad guys who equip Than with an all-destroying blue ray are the Holy Therns, who speak obliquely of what “the goddess” wants. Who are they? Where are they from? Whence do they derive their kooky, glowing magic? Dunno. They’re just bad guys who help other bad guys fight the good guys. Boo, Therns. Stylistically, there’s a right way and a wrong way to carry off a poncy space world in which the prevailing accents tilt “Downton Abbey.” The right way is with crackling dialogue, a fillip of cheerful near-irony in every scene and characters with crisp, distinct personalities. “John Carter,” alas, opts for something else. Too many lines sound like they were inserted as placeholders and never changed; that novelist Michael Chabon, of all hacks, shares a writing credit with director Andrew Stanton and Mark Andrews only adds insult to the inanity. Key characters, Carter included, come off as driven by their circumstances, instead of the other way ’round. Between the supersaturation of special effects, the paint-by-numbers dialogue and the ambiguity around key characters, “John Carter” feels in all like a George Lucas movie in which Lucas had too much control. Hankering for sequels, Disney may decide that one “John Carter” movie every hundred years is plenty.
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 23
OPENING FRIDAY, MARCH 16
“21 Jump Street,” rated R, starring Channing Tatum, Jonah Hill, Ice Cube. Stupidest. Remake. Idea. Ever. And I’m sorry, is Channing Tatum supposed to be the Johnny Depp character? Just… no.
THE8ERS Movie times are subject to change.
The Big Mo
Gates open at 7 p.m.; shows begin at 8:30 p.m. (approximately)
“Casa de mi Padre,” rated R, starring Will Ferrell, Gael Garcia Bernal, Diego Luna, Nick Offerman. Ricky Bobby and Ron Swanson… together at last. Could it get any better? At this point, it doesn’t even matter what the premise is, but it’s about some brothers trying to save their father’s ranch from one of Mexico’s most treacherous drug lords. We were hoping Ron Swanson was playing the drug lord but, no, he’s a DEA agent.
March 16-17 Field 1: Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked (PG) and Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax (PG); Field 2: Journey 2: The Mysterious Island (PG) and John Carter (PG-13); Field 3: Safe House (R) and Act of Valor (R).
Masters 7 Cinemas March 16-17 Haywire (R) 4:45, 10; Contraband (R) 1:30, 4:30, 7:30, 9:50; Joyful Noise (PG-13) 1, 4, 6:45, 9:30; War Horse (PG-13) 1:45, 5, 8:30; The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (R) 9:20; Mission: ImpossibleGhost Protocol (PG-13) 1:15, 4, 7, 9:50; Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked (G) 1, 3, 5:10, 7:15; Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (PG-13) 1:15, 7:15; Hugo (PG) 1:30, 4:15, 7, 9:40
C E R WE
D N E M M O
“Grosse Pointe Blank” Ask people of a certain age what their favorite John Cusack movie is and they may point to “Sixteen Candles,” “Say Anything” or “Better Off Dead,” 1980s movies in which Cusack came of age just as the viewers did. And though much of the Spirit staff falls squarely within that age bracket, our favorite is still 1997’s “Grosse Point Blank,” the story of a hitman’s return to his hometown for a job that just happens to coincide with his 10-year high school reunion. It could have been too cutesy for its own good (lookin’ at you, “Juno”), but underneath the comedy is some real acting by Cusack, who plays Martin Blank, a boy who never really found his place until the military discovered in him a certain “moral flexibility.” Cusack has lots of help from an excellent supporting cast, including Minnie Driver as Debi Newberry, the girl he left in the lurch on prom night; Alan Arkin as Blank’s scared-stiff shrink; Dan Aykroyd as rival hitman Grocer; Jeremy Piven as a high school friend and sister Joan as Blank’s crazy assistant. In the end, however, the movie is all Cusack’s. After all, no one else could make Debi, and the audience, want to give this hitman a second shot.
24 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
March 16 21 Jump Street (R) 2:30, 5, 7:30, 10; John Carter (PG-13) 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9:30; Silent House (R) 2:10, 4:25, 6:40, 9:15; A Thousand Words (PG13) 2:45, 4:50, 7:25, 9:50; Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax (PG) 2:20, 3, 4:40, 5:20, 7, 7:40, 9:55; Project X (R) 2:10, 4:25, 6:35, 9:10; Act of Valor (R) 4:20, 7:20, 9:55; Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds (PG-13) 4:10, 7:10, 9:50; Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (PG-13) 7:50, 10:05; This Means War (PG-13) 2:40, 5:10, 7:35, 10:05; Journey 2: The Mysterious Island (PG) 3:10, 5:30; Safe House (R) 3:50, 6:50, 9:40; The
Vow (PG-13) 4:30, 7:15, 9:45 March 17 21 Jump Street (R) noon, 2:30, 5, 7:30, 10; John Carter (PG-13) 1, 2, 4, 5, 7, 8, 9:30; Silent House (R) noon, 2:10, 4:25, 6:40, 9:15; A Thousand Words (PG-13) 12:25, 2:45, 4:50, 7:25, 9:50; Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax (PG) noon, 12:40, 2:20, 3, 4:40, 5:20, 7, 7:40, 9:55; Project X (R) noon, 2:10, 4:25, 6:35, 9:10; Act of Valor (R) 1:20, 4:20, 7:20, 9:55; Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds (PG-13) 1:10, 4:10, 7:10, 9:50; Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (PG-13) 7:50, 10:05; This Means War (PG-13) 12:15, 2:40, 5:10, 7:35, 10:05; Journey 2: The Mysterious Island (PG) 12:30, 3:10, 5:30; Safe House (R) 12:50, 3:50, 6:50, 9:40; The Vow (PG-13) 1:30, 4:30, 7:15, 9:45
Regal Exchange 20 March 16-17 21 Jump Street (R) 12:10, 2:50, 5:20, 7:50, 10:20; John Carter (PG-13) 1:10, 1:30, 1:50, 4:10, 4:30, 4:50, 7:10, 7:30, 7:50, 10:10, 10:30, 10:50; Silent House (R) 12:05, 2:15, 4:35, 7:55, 10, 12:10; A Thousand Words (PG-13) 12:30, 1, 2:45, 3:15, 5, 5:30, 7:25, 8, 9:45, 10:15, 12:05; Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax (PG) 12:15, 12:45, 1:15, 2:25, 2:55, 3:25, 4:45, 5:05, 5:35, 7, 7:20, 7:45, 9:10, 9:30, 9:55, 11:20, 11:40; Project X (R) noon, 2:10, 4:20, 7:15, 9:40, 11:50; Act of Valor (R) 2:35, 5:05, 7:40, 10:20; Tyler Perry’s Good Deeds (PG-13) 12:10, 2:40, 5:15, 7:50, 10:20; Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (PG-13) 12:20, 2:50, 5:25, 8, 10:25; This Means War (PG-13) 12:15, 2:40, 5:15, 7:35, 10:05, 12:30; Journey 2: The Mysterious Island (PG) 12:30, 2:50, 5:10, 7:30, 9:50, 12:10; Safe House (R) 2:45, 5:20, 7:55, 10:30; The Vow (PG-13) 2:30, 5, 7:40, 10:05, 12:30
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Music and Daytime Drinking… Two Weekends in a Row!
There are two things I love (at least two): music and drinking beer in the middle of the day. Luckily this past weekend, I was able to combine them both at the Evans Towne Center Craft Beer Festival. Watching music at an amphitheatre is great, and besides the name, the Lady Antebellum Amphitheatre is an impressive venue. The music on Saturday was great, perfect for an outdoor festival when your main concern is beer and food. The Robbie Ducey Band and Funk You played. Funk You is one of my favorite local bands, and this was the first time that I’ve seen the Robbie Ducey Band, and they were good. Only one thing: Robbie Ducey Band, we get it, you can solo great on the guitar, now let’s get back to the song. All in all, Saturday was a great day, and I cannot wait to see what that place looks like when Seether, Chevelle, Black Stone Cherry and New Medicine are there on Thursday, May 3. Now on to the wild world of rock ‘n’ roll… and crazy religious people. The Westboro Baptist Church (the insane people who go by the slogan God Hates Fags) was at it again this week when they decided to protest a Radiohead concert. These poor excuses for Christians were slamming the band for homophobic slurs and for claiming that God was “their enemy.” The church went to their website, calling the band “Freak monkey’s with mediocre tunes keeps you busy and focused on lightness.” I’m confused. To help rectify the situation, Thom Yorke, lead singer of Radiohead, flailed around like an insane person. Ladies, brace yourself for this news: John Mayer has been forced to cancel all of his live dates and go on an indefinite hiatus after doctors revealed that granuloma on his vocal cords has grown back. Mayer went to his Tumbler page and wrote the following: “Though there will be a day when all of this will be behind me, it will sideline me for a longer period of time than I care to have you count down.” Word is that Mayer will seek the attention of multiple Hollywood starlets to keep his mind busy during his off time. His new album, “Born and Raised,” will be released on May 22. The details of Whitney Houston’s will have been revealed, and Whitney’s daughter, Bobbi Kristina, will be getting everything, minus the drug habit. The 19-year-old will become the owner of her mother’s jewelry, cars, clothing and more on her 21st birthday. In more news of ridiculous things that celebrities do, Fiona Apple revealed her delayed fourth album will have a rather long title: “The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than the Driver of the Screw, and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do.” Come on. The disc will be in stores sometime in June. Here is a new segment I like to call “Listen To This, F’ That.” Since 53 weeks in the No. 1 position wasn’t enough, Adele is still holding it down. The band fun. is at 12. I think you can see where this is going. Listen to fun.; F’ Adele. Saint Patty’s Day this year is going to be great; parade, green beer, live music, green beer, a big crowd downtown and green beer. One of the best lineups I’ve seen so far has to be the one at Sky City. The Favors from 3:30-5 p.m., Funk You from 5:30-6:30 p.m., Cocoa Dylan from 7-8:15 p.m., JJ Maj & The Unpolished Brass Band from 8:4510 p.m., Suex Effect from 10:15-11:45 p.m. and a second set from Funk You from midnight-1:30 a.m. How those guys are going to be standing at 1:30 a.m., I have no idea. I doubt I will be. What bands should I be checking out? Where is the best venue in Augusta? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
MATTSTONE can be heard weekdays from 2-6 p.m. on 95 Rock. 28 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
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Thursday, March 15 Live Music
French Market Grille West - Doc Easton Smooth Jazz Joe’s Underground - Jerod Gay O Lounge - Jazmine Soul Band Red Pepper Cafe - Funk/Fusion Jazz Rose Hill Stables - Preston, Weston and Sandra Sky City - Juicifer Travinia’s - Smooth Jazz The Willcox - Classic Jazz Wild Wing - Sibling String
Casa Blanca - Thursday Tango Club Argos - Karaoke Cocktails Lounge - Karaoke Coyote’s - Karaoke Fishbowl Lounge - Karaoke Fox’s Lair - Soup, Suds & Conversations Helga’s Pub & Grille - Trivia The Highlander - Butt Naked Trivia The Library - DJ Kris Fisher The Loft - Karaoke Malibu Jack’s - Sports Trivia with Mike Thomas Mi Rancho (Downtown) - Karaoke Mi Rancho (Evans) - Karaoke The Playground - Open Mic with Brandy Shannon’s - Karaoke Somewhere in Augusta - Keno, Poker Soul Bar - Boom Box Villa Europa - Karaoke Wooden Barrel - ’80s Night Karaoke
Eagle’s Nest - Free Salsa Lessons; Latin Dance Party First Round - DJ Kris Fisher Fishbowl Lounge - Karaoke Iron Horse Bar & Grill - Karaoke Mi Rancho (Downtown) - Karaoke with Ryan Moseley Mi Rancho (Washington Road) - Karaoke with Jeff Barnes Mi Rancho (Clearwater) - Three J’s Karaoke Ms. Carolyn’s - Karaoke Palmetto Tavern - DJ Tim Rebeck’s Hideaway - Open Mic Roadrunner Cafe - Karaoke with Steve Chappel Soul Bar - 90’s Night Tropicabana - Latin Friday Wheels - Live DJ
Cocktails Lounge - Latin Night Crazy Turk’s - DJ Kris Fisher Fishbowl Lounge - Karaoke Fox’s Lair - Karaoke Helga’s Pub & Grille - Trivia Laura’s Backyard Tavern - Karaoke w/ David Doane The Loft - Karaoke Mi Rancho (Downtown) - Karaoke with Rockin Rob Mi Rancho (Clearwater) - Karaoke with Danny Haywood Mi Rancho (Washington Road) - Karaoke Ms. Carolyn’s - Karaoke One Hundred Laurens - DJ Kenny Ray Robbie’s - Saturday Night Dance Party Tropicabana - Salsa Saturday
Club Argos - Variety Show Cocktails Lounge - Grown-Up Fridays with DJ Cork and Bull Pub - Karaoke
TRIVIA 2015 CENTRAL AVE. V. 23 | NO. 11
Wooden Barrel - Karaoke Contest
Saturday, March 17 Live Music
Club Argos - Karaoke Fishbowl Lounge - Dart League Laura’s Backyard Tavern - Karaoke w/ David Doane Malibu Jack’s - Karaoke with Denny Somewhere In Augusta - Big Prize Trivia; Hawk Talk
Club Argos - Santoni’s Satin Dolls Cocktails Lounge - Augusta’s Got Talent Cotton Patch - Trivia and Tunes Coyote’s - Drink N Drown w/ Snow Bunny Bikini Contest Hotel Aiken - Karaoke w/ Tom Mitchell Laura’s Backyard Tavern - Karaoke w/ David Doane The Loft - Karaoke Mi Rancho (Downtown) - Karaoke Mi Rancho (Washington Road) - Karaoke with Rockin’ Rob The Playground - Krazy Karaoke with Big Troy Polo Tavern - Karaoke w/ Tom Mitchell Somewhere In Augusta - Spanky Brown & Mark Evans Surrey Tavern - Trivia
"Over a hundred different beers.. with thirty beers on tap!"
THURS. & SAT. 8:30PM
P UB & GRILLE
Live Music Cocktails Lounge - Live Music Fox’s Lair - John Fisher The Highlander - Open Mic Night Joe’s Underground - Happy Bones Wild Wing - Sabo & Mike The Willcox - Piano Jazz
209 on the River - Smooth Grooves Joe’s Underground - Sibling String Malibu Jack’s - Marilyn Adcock Manuel’s Bread Cafe - Rene Russell Wild Wing - Old Man Crazy
The Acoustic Coffeehouse - Open Acoustic Jam Session with Eryn Eubanks and the Family Fold Cotton Patch - Old Man Crazy, St. Patrick’s Day Party Country Club - Tyler Hammond Coyote’s - Josh London Imperial Theatre- Livingston Taylor Joe’s Underground - Keith Gregory Malibu Jack’s - Perfect Picture P.I. Bar and Grill - Smooth Jazz Sky City - St. Patrick’s Day “Shamrock Jam” w/ Funk You, The Favors, JJ Maj, The Unpolished Brass, Cocoa Dylan, & Suex Effect Soul Bar - St. Patty’s Day DJ’s Somewhere in Augusta - St. Patrick’s Day Party w/ The Daniel Johnson Band Soy Noodle House - Playback the Band Wild Wing - Jukebox Zero
Tuesday, March 20
Wednesday, March 21 Live Music
Friday, March 16 Live Music
Bell Auditorium- Don Williams Cotton Patch - John Kolbeck Country Club - Joe Stevenson Coyote’s - Eric Lee Beddingfield The First Round- Jah Harvest French Market Grille West - Doc Easton Joe’s Underground - Jacob Beltz Laura’s Backyard Tavern - TDC & R Malibu Jack’s - South Atlantic PI Bar & Grill - Jazz Duo Sector 7G - TFS Rave: Silver Glitter Space Race 3000 w/ LinearNorth, Polyphase, and Number5 Sky City - Mother’s Finest, Funk You Somewhere in Augusta - Joe Stevenson Wild Wing - Michael Patterson Band
Somewhere In Augusta - Free Poker Tournaments Wild Wing - Trivia
Club Argos - Variety Show
Wheels - Live DJ Wooden Barrel - Kamikaze Karaoke
Sunday, March 18 Live Music
5 O’Clock Bistro - Buzz and Candice Casa Blanca - Joel Cruz and His Young Lions Imperial Theatre- Ralphie May Wild Wing - Josh London The Willcox - Jazz Jam Session
Caribbean Soul - Love Jones Sundays Malibu Jack’s - Karaoke with Mike Swift Mi Rancho (Downtown) - Karaoke Mi Rancho (Washington Road) - Karaoke, Salsa Dancing
Monday, March 19 What’s Tonight?
Applebee’s (Evans) - Trivia Club Argos - Karaoke Malibu Jack’s - Trivia with Mike Thomas Mi Rancho (Downtown) - Trivia with Mike Thomas
Liz Bramlect & Steven Bryant - Joe’s Underground March 22 6, Cameras Guns & Radios - Sky City March 22 Matt Acosta - Wild Wing March 22 Old Man Crazy - Cotton Patch March 23 Michael Stacey - Country Club March 23 Jason Sturgeon -Coyote’s March 23 & 24 Jason White - Laura’s Backyard Tavern March 23 Jim Perkins - Somewhere In Augusta March 23 Vertigo Jazz Project - Stillwater Taproom March 23 Funk You - Surrey Tavern March 23 Steve Harvey - James Brown Arena March 24 Dr. Bread - Soul Bar March 24 Candlelight Jazz - 8th Street River Stage March 25 Mazes & Monsters, Death of Paris - Sky City March 29 Mandisa, Nicole Britt, Laura Story - USC-Aiken Convocation Center March 30 Mannray, Brothers, Yo Soybean - Sky City March 30 Gaslight Street - Sky City March 31 Rock Fore! Dough - First Tee of Augusta April 3 Fred Williams Jazz - Augusta Moonlight Music Cruise - April 6 Granny’s Gin - The First Round April 6 Yacht Rock Schooner - Sky City April 7 Daybreak Embrace - The Playground April 9 The Mass Chaos Tour w/ Godsmack and Staind James Brown Arena April 13 Lady Antebellum - James Brown Arena May 22-23 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 29
IN THE MIX
Kelsey Simpson Bartender, Tavern at the Bean
Originally from St. Louis, 21-year-old Kelsey moved to Augusta 11 years ago when her mom was named director of burn services at the Joseph M. Still Burn Center (she’s now president). A graduate of Evans High School (a running theme amongst local bartenders), Kelsey is currently working on her masters at Georgia Institute of Cosmetology so she can become a color specialist. And her personal color is cardinal red, as she is a diehard St. Louis Cardinal’s fan. She’s been bartending at the Bean Baskette for a few months and is the one and only bartender. Dog or cat? Cat. Comedy or horror? Comedy. Favorite comedian? Adam Sandler, hands down. Favorite Adam Sandler movie? “Reign Over Me.” (At this point, Kelsey mentioned her passion for golf and all the courses she has played around the country. As a non-golfer, I zoned out. You’ll have to ask her.) Fried or grilled? Grilled. Definitely. Dream car? CJ-7 Jeep Wrangler. I’d like an ’85. The last year they made them was ’86. What about the CJ 5? The CJ 5 is more muddier, I’ve always dreamed of the CJ 7 so I could put in those cool seats… What are you doing St. Patrick’s Day? I’ll be working a huge St. Patrick’s Day party at our bar. We’re bringing in about seven really good-looking girls, we’ll have a cask keg, also samples of a ton of different Irish whiskeys not normally found in Augusta. There’ll be a couple of different bands there, trivia, an Irish Jig dance off and a lot more. There will be a tent in the parking lot, so we’re partnering with Vineyard Wines, so they’ll be serving wines. It’s going to be a great place to go after the Augusta parade on Broad!
PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20)
With seahorses, it’s the male of the species that cares for the eggs as they gestate. He carries them in a “brood pouch” on his front side. You will benefit from having a seahorse-like quality in the coming weeks. Whatever gender you are, your archetypal masculine qualities should play an especially strong role as you nurture a project that’s in its early developmental phases.
coyotes sometimes cooperate with each other as they search for food. The coyotes are better at stalking prey above ground, and the badgers take over if the hunted animal slips underground. They share the spoils. Is there a person you know who’s skilled at a task you have trouble with and who could benefit from something you’re good at? Form symbiotic relationships or seek out unusual partnerships that play to both parties’ strengths.
ARIES (March 21-April 19)
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22)
This week you may learn the real reason the tortoise beat the hare, why two of the three blind mice weren’t really blind and the shocking truth about the relationship between Cinderella’s fairy godmother and the handsome prince. Nursery rhymes will scramble and fairy tales will fracture. Thor, the god of thunder, may make a tempting offer to Snow White. The cow’s jump over the moon could turn out to have been faked by the CIA. Sounds like a rowdy good time for all!
How did the Vikings navigate their ships through rough northern seas on cloudy and foggy days? Medieval texts speak of the mysterious “sunstone,” a “Viking compass” used to detect the hidden sun. Modern theories suggest that this technology may have been Iceland spar, a mineral that polarizes light, making it useful in plotting a course under overcast skies. Now would be an excellent time to enhance your connection with whatever it is that can provide such power.
TAURUS (April 20-May 20)
SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21)
“Roots and wings. But let the wings grow roots and the roots fly,” wrote Spanish poet Juan Ramon Jimenez. In the coming weeks, you’ll generate good fortune by exposing your dark mysterious depths to the big bright sky; you’ll be wise to bring your soaring dreams down to earth for a pit stop. The highs need the influence of the lows. Interweave your past with your future. Give your rich traditions a taste of the stories that are as-yet unwritten.
GEMINI (May 21-June 20)
Is it possible you were a spider in a previous life? If so, please call on the abilities you developed back then. You need to create an extra big, super-fine web so that you can capture all the raw materials you will need in the coming weeks and months. If you’re not sure whether you are the reincarnation of a spider, then simply imagine you were.
CANCER (June 21-July 22)
British writer Kenneth Tynan asked a movie director about how he’d film an advancing army. Did it matter whether the action went from right to left across the frame or left to right? “Of course!” said the director. “To the Western eye, easy or successful movement is left to right, difficult or failed movement is right to left.” Every day for the next two weeks, visualize yourself moving from left to right as you fulfill a dream you want to accomplish.
LEO (July 23-Aug. 22)
Hanadi Zakaria al-Hindi is the first Saudi Arabian woman to be licensed to fly a plane. But there’s an absurd law in her country that prohibits women from driving cars, so she needs a man to give her a lift to the airport. Maybe you’ve advanced to a higher level without getting certified on a lower level or got permission and power to operate in a sphere that’s meaningful to you even though you skipped a step along the way. Think about whether you should do anything about the discrepancy.
VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22)
Recent scientific studies have confirmed what Native American folklore reports: Badgers and
If you set up two mirrors in just the right way, you’re able to see what your body looks like from behind. Try that exercise sometime soon. It will encourage your subconscious mind to help you discover what has been missing from your self-knowledge. As a result, you may be drawn to experiences that reveal things about yourself you’ve been resistant to seeing.
SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21)
According to my Sagittarius friend Jonathan Zap, the Greek playwright Aristophanes had an ambivalent attitude about divine blessings. He said that no great gift enters the human sphere without a curse attached to it. One of last year’s big gifts has revealed its downside in ways that may have been confusing or deflating, but soon you will find a second blessing that was hidden within the curse in embryonic form. You’ll be able to tease it out, ripen it and add it to the bounty of the original gift.
CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19)
Writing in the science magazine Discover, Corey S. Powell says, “There’s an old joke: If you tell someone the universe is expanding, he’ll believe you. If you tell him there’s wet paint on the park bench, he’ll want to touch it to make sure.” Rebel against this theory. It’s important for you to demand as much proof for big, faraway claims as for those that are close at hand. Don’t trust anyone’s assertions just because they sound lofty or elegant. Put them to the test.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18)
Make this Honor Your #@%(!)* Irritations and Annoyances Week. To properly observe this holiday, study the people and things that irk you so you can extract from them all the blessings and teachings they may provide. Are you too tolerant of an annoying situation that you need to pay closer attention to? Is it time to reclaim the power you’ve been losing because of an exasperating energy-drain? Does some jerk remind you of a quality you don’t like in yourself? Is there a valuable clue or two to be gleaned from a passiveaggressive provocateur?
ROBBREZSNY FREEWILLASTROLOGY@FREEWILLASTROLOGY.COM 30 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
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Open Arms Community embraces diversity offered at Laziza Mediterranean Grill Columbia County might be known for its homogenous look, but when it comes to food, its residents want something a little different. “I’ve noticed that around here,” said Laziza Mediterranean Grill owner Nader Khatib. “A lot of people are open to trying new things.” As the only Arabic eatery in the area, open since last September in the Publix shopping center, that has certainly given Khatib and Laziza a leg up on the competition. It also doesn’t hurt that that they’ve found numerous ways to make newcomers feel welcome. “We have a lot of people who come in here who have never tried any of this food and they try something and end up loving it,” he said. “And a lot of that is because we always offer samples, even if they don’t ask.” From the red lentil soup, which Khatib describes as almost like a split pea soup in texture, to the four kinds of hummus they now offer, customers can sample just about anything on the menu before buying. “It used to be three,” Khatib said about the hummus flavors that they make in the fast casual restaurant, where customers order at the counter and serve themselves drinks while their meals are prepared. “We started out with plain, roasted garlic and roasted red pepper hummus, then started offering jalapeno as a special. Then people would call and say, ‘Do you have the jalapeno hummus?’ So we decided to add it to the regular menu.” This careful attention to what their customers want has also led to another menu addition. “Ever since we opened people have been asking about lamb,” he said. “And we have a lamb and beef gyro on the menu but we’ve now added lamb shish kebabs.” The new addition has proved popular, giving the signature menu item chicken shawarma a run for its money. Shawarma, marinated, boneless, skinless chicken thighs that are stacked and roasted on a vertical broiler, still proves to be very popular, however, probably because of its versatility. Once shaved, the meat can be served in a wrap or as part of one of Laziza’s platters, or even on one of the restaurant’s salads if a customer requests it. Healthy vegetarian offerings are another reason customers have told Khatib that they love Laziza. Vegetarian offering include tabuleh salad (cracked wheat, parsley, mint, olive oil and lemon), red lentil soup and falafel. “We appeal to a lot of vegetarians in the area because of the number of vegetarian offerings we have,” he said. “Especially the falafel, which is a ground chickpea fritter with onion, garlic and spices. We form it into balls and deep fry them. They’re sort of like a Middle Eastern hush puppy. It’s crunchy on the outside and soft and moist on the inside. It’s a filling, proteinpacked meal.” Such healthy entrée choices leave plenty or room for one of Laziza’s unusual desserts, like crepes filled with fresh ingredients or the ever-popular baklava, crispy pastry with nuts and syrup. “We sell a ton of baklava and the crepes go over really well,” Khatib said. “But the baklava, people love. They eat them up.” Besides the new menu additions, changes are underway at V. 23 | NO. 11
Laziza. Customers may notice a small grocery area at the front of the store that includes staples used in many of the dishes the restaurant serves. “It’s a little mini-grocery where we sell some of the things that are used in the food we cook,” he said. “The red lentils, cracked wheat, the tea and coffee we sell. We also sell bread by the bag. A bag of pita bread is $3.99.” Khatib and crew have also implemented a customer loyalty program that gives loyal diners a 10th meal free after the purchase of nine. Laziza has also signed on with 706 Foods (706foods.com), a new delivery service in the area. One thing that won’t ever change, however, is quality, Khatib assures his customers. “We are one of the very few who make almost everything from scratch,” he said. “Even the hummus.” Laziza Mediterranean Grill 4272 Washington Road, Evans 11:30 a.m.-9 p.m., Monday-Saturday 706-504-4303 lazizagrill.com
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 31
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3035 Washington Rd. • 706-364-WILD (9453) www.wildwingcafe.com 32 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
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Metro Spirit’s Pet Page! email@example.com
STARS: A Different Kind of Animal Rescue By Willene Colvin
The mission and purpose of STARS, Save the Animals Rescue Society, Inc., is to eliminate the unnecessary euthanasia of healthy, adoptable pets through an aggressive rescue policy and adoption program. But that’s not our only aim. Since we opened, we have strived to do numerous things, including to institute an education program that teaches responsibilities of pet ownership; to elicit empathy and compassion to defenseless animals; to increase the awareness of the devastation of pet overpopulation and abandonment of defenseless animals; to strive for strict spay/neuter legislation; to work with law enforcement agencies in the prosecution to the fullest extent of the law persons found guilty of inhumane treatment and/or cruelty to any animal; to aggressively work toward stiffer penalties for inhumane treatment, negligent treatment, or cruelty to animals; to provide to the citizens of our area a safe, reliable, managed by Maggie local veterinarians low-cost About 1.5 years old spay/neuter and vaccination A loving dog STARS program; and to help relieve stress 706-231-4399 and loneliness to some of our starsrescue.org elderly citizens in assisted living or nursing home environments by offering companionship visits with our animals for emotional therapy. STARS is licensed by the state of Georgia as a rescue shelter. We are a nonprofit corporation and have a 501c3 status, which means that all donations to STARS are Reilly, lab mix tax deductible. STARS operates About 11 weeks old through a network of loving foster Playful and loveable STARS homes. We are a no-kill facility. 706-231-4399 Any animal accepted into the starsrescue.org STARS system will have a home in our organization until a “forever” home is found through adoption. The STARS group has a strong commitment to accepting animals from local animal control shelters, but because there are many legitimate reasons for provide individuals being unable to continue caring for their animals, we strive to provide releases when possible so that these animals don’t become another number at the animal control shelter with an approximate 90 percent chance of being euthanized after a traumatic “stay” at the shelter. Since animals don’t recognize city or county boundary lines, we accept releases from Richmond, Burke and Columbia counties, as well as the entire CSRA area. We have accepted and worked with animal control facilities as far away as Rome, Ga., and Aiken, S.C. We receive no funding from local or state government agencies or from national humane groups. We are totally
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dependent on community support to run our no-kill rescue shelter organization. Our fur babies are quarantined 10-21 days to ensure as much as possible that they are disease free; they are given all vaccinations including rabies according to age; they are seen by local veterinarians for medical checkups; they are given heartworm tests if age appropriate and given heartworm treatment if needed; they are spayed/neutered as part of the requirements for adoption. Our fur babies are fostered in homes, which provide love, socialization, nurturing and some training to ensure they are loving family pets. We desperately need foster homes for puppies and young dogs. We also need volunteers to assist at adoptions on Saturdays. Please call STARS at 706-231-4399 to see how you can help save lives by being a volunteer. We currently have babies with medical problems or in need to long-term care due to Darla, boxer mix malnutrition and neglect. A little over a year old Become a sponsor and start Playful and loving STARS saving lives today. These 706-231-4399 defenseless animals deserve a starsrescue.org chance to live and to have a loving home of their own. The innocent, defenseless babies have no control over their situation or a voice in what happens to them. Please be their voice. Don’t turn away from their cries for help. Angie, collie mix About 2 years old Loves people and needs a forever home STARS 706-231-4399 starsrescue.org
Willene Colvin is founder of STARS animal rescue. For more information, visit starsrescue.org.
AARF firstname.lastname@example.org Augusta Humane Society 706-736-0186 Augusta-Richmond Co. Animal Services 706-790-6836
Paws in the Park A CSRA Humane Society fundraiser that takes place at 425 Wood Street and at the north entrance of Lake Olmstead Park. Saturday, March 24, 9:30 a.m. For more information, visit csrahumanesociety.org Block Party 2012 Sponsored by Vic’s Motorcycle Sales and Service, this benefit for Feathered Friends Forever Bird Sanctuary in Harlem costs $10 to enter and is held at 2113 Harding Road off of Peach Orchard Road. Saturday, March 31, 10 a.m. For more information, call 706-691-5093 or 803-640-4329, or visit featheredfriendsforever.org
Village Deli and Friends Annual Charity Golf Tournament A fundraising event for That’s What Friends Are For, Inc., a 501c3 that raises money for local rescues, spay and neuter, and much more. Sunday, May 20, 1:30 p.m. tee time Goshen Plantation Golf Club To register, donate or get more information, call Village Deli at 706-736-3691 or visit thatswhatfriendsarefor.org Feed the Love Food Drive Through March 27, Bi-Lo shoppers can purchase a $5 bag, filled with pet food, that will be donated to Golden Harvest Food Bank to give to needy families with pets. For more information, visit bi-lo.com
Ongoing Adoption Events PETCO 4209 Washington Road, Evans Saturdays, 11 a.m.-4 p.m., Sundays, 1-4 p.m. PetSmart 225 Robert C. Daniel Parkway, Augusta Saturdays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tractor Supply 596 Bobby Jones Expressway, next to Sam’s Club Saturdays and Sundays from 1-4 p.m.
Feathered Friends Forever 706-556-2424 featheredfriendsforever.org Diamonds in the Ruff, Evans diamondsintheruffcsra.org Girard Life Saver 706-871-8273, 478-569-9209 email@example.com
Long Dog Rescue 706-854-8646 firstname.lastname@example.org Old Fella Burke County email@example.com oldfella.org
Graced Kennels 706-738-7168
STARS 706-592-4158 starsrescue.org Washington-Wilkes Humane 706-678-2287
Columbia Co. Animal Services 706-541-4077
Happy Tails 706-955-0438, 706-836-2708 firstname.lastname@example.org
Fundraising Organizations for Local Rescue and Spay/Neuter Efforts
CSRA Chihuahua Rescue 706-825-8090, 706-763-8071 email@example.com
Heartsong 706-855-1241 firstname.lastname@example.org
CSRA Humane Society 706-261-7387 csrshumanesociety.org
Helping Hands Humane Society 706-456-3339 email@example.com
Boston Terrier Rescue of South Carolina 706-726-2221 or 803-279-8069 bostonrescueofsc.org
PawPrints Foundation 706-863-2067 pawprintsfoundation.org That’s What Friends Are For, Inc. c/o The Village Deli 706-736-3691 thatswhatfriendsarefor.org
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 33
Jordan Hobbs and Ashlyn Wiggins with Fallon and Brandon Zapata at the Elton John concert at the James Brown Arena.
Derek Enlow, Lindsey Quattlebaum, Guy Harvey and Madison Parrish at the Loft.
Amanda Martin, Meredith Beach and Leslie Taylor at the SOA Pops! at the Bell concert.
Lee Blitch, Kaitlin Richards and Turnbull Pursley at Stillwater Tap Room.
Jessica Wilkerson, Donna Douglas (Elly May Clampett of “The Beverly Hillbillies”) and Mitchell Wilkerson at the Little Roy and Lizzy DVD taping at the Bell Auditorium.
Terra and Jordan Carroll with performer James Delisco at the SOA Pops! at the Bell concert.
Ooollee Bricker with the Producers’ Wayne Famous and Jai West at Sky City.
34 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
Julie Kennedy, the Producers’ Kyle Henderson and Bonnie Dyches at Sky City.
Debbie Garner, the Producers’ Bryan Holmes and Teresa Thompson at Sky City.
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Ben Lewis, Brooke Bailey and Ben Johnson at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
Cynthia Shepherd, Amanda Reddick and Kim Harrison at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
Chris Rodriguez, Jenny Arnette and Matthew Finch at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
Mark Fernandez and Jennifer Evans with Tanya and Robert Renew at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
Courtney Grickenberger, Ashlyn Mears, Lucinda Lumley and Lindsey Dickson at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
Justine Beaman, Charles Plunkett and Courtney Twork at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
Tom Crowther and Stephanie Muir with Kelly and Travis Johnson at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
Michael and Christy Beckham, Logan Stansell and Amy Newman at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
Tee Gentry at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
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Scott Peebles at the press conference announcing his intention to run for sheriff of Richmond County.
Lance Kennedy, Savannah Owens, Sharon Kennedy and Hope King at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
Vicky Childs and Hannah Swing at the Inaugural Evans Towne Center Park Spring Festival.
METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 35
ON THE BALL
2012 NCAA Tournament Bracket The madness is here… got your picks in yet?
MATTLANE is host of The Weekend Rundown which airs from 10 a.m.-noon Saturdays on News-Talk-Sports 1630 AM. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @Mattlane28.
Test your skill — or maybe it’s complete luck — against your friends and coworkers by filling the bracket out with your projected winners from each round and see if you have what it takes to pick the National Champion. Good luck… you’ll need it.
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METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12 37
Subject/verb agreement, whiners. For the love of all that’s grammatically sacred, subject/verb agreement. Is it too much to ask? I didn’t know what I wanted in a husband until I had a child. Now that I know what I want in a husband, in order to get it, I think I’m going to have to find a wife. Sigh... Boys, Y U NO HELP WITH HOUSEWORK?! Paul Simon is the picture of the west end of a horse heading east. Hello, will you all please do a listing this week or at least by next week of where we can get real Irish foods? We laddies and lassies need to know. And would the Patch happen to be open to the public for their lunchtime St. Paddy’s Day? And what would they have? Recently moved to Columbia County and I can’t believe that the Tax Commissioner is married to a County Commissioner and his brother is running for Congress. Are the Allens trying to be like the Kennedys? Something’s not right here. If you referring to me about the complaint about welfare or defending the need to receive government assistance. First of all. I’m not on welfare at this time. Second of all, I’m a man who wear pants most of the time and shorts sometimes. In fact, I’m wearing pants at the time I sent this comment to the whine line section of the metro spirit. Third of all, you’re the one that seems to be ignorant based on your negative views about people on government assistance or welfare. I’m not offended by what any of you said about this topic or issue. I was just telling the facts based on what I witness from other people that was on welfare or now on welfare. Last but not least, I maybe more intelligent than you. I’ve seen 3 musicals since Feb. The company that touts 67 yrs of experience was the absolute worst, a complete waste of time & money. The not-so-bad show, was performed well, but the show itself was horrible, if I wanted to hear messed up Bible stories, I’d go to a Baptist church; at least the food was decent. The only good thing I can say is Bravo Cinderella! I don’t know what ASU has changed about their program but apparently they’re the last bastion of decent theatre in Augusta. People keep talking about this French Theatre, it sounds too naughty for my taste, so stop suggesting it. Why are area doctors handing out handicap parking permits like they are candy treats. I see 75% of the people parking in handicap spots are under thirty and they jog from their vehicle into and out of the stores. These drivers should lose their driving privileges for one year and the doctor that signed for the permit should be barred from every signing another permit. Columbia and Richmond county would make a ton of money at $500 per citation if they would enforce the law.
Have something you want to get off your chest? Send your whines to whineline@themetrospirit. com. If you do so by noon on Friday, you might just see it in the next Thursday’s issue. Oh, and whines may be edited for content but will pretty much be printed exactly as you type them.
Fug Madness is Coming! Full disclosure: The Metro Spirit previously declared its love for the website gofugyourself. com on May 12, 2011 but, at the risk of repeating ourselves, we simply must impress upon our readers how important it is that they visit this site now. The March Madness NCAA basketball tournament means more than reruns, people: It means that the Fug Girls put a year’s worth of fashion tomfoolery to a reader poll in Fug Madness 2012. It started on Monday, but there is still plenty of time to vote for your favorites in the Madonna, Cher, Charo and Bjork brackets before the two celebrities with the highest votes face off at the end of the month. Our frontrunner bets include Lea “Pose Hard” Michele from “Glee,” Oscar nominee and ’50s librarian on crack Michelle Williams, Christina “I Can’t Harness the Hotness” Hendricks from “Mad Men” and Thomas Jane from “Hung,” who refuses to wear shoes… ever.
WERECOMMEND I cannot believe the Republican’ts in this country. It’s O.K. for them to pay out the waazoo for the health care our tax moneys provide for each and every Senator and Congressman (who by the way aren’t even doing what we pay them for), but providing health care for a poor person who really needs it..no way..you’re not going there. What kind of (so called) “Christians” are you? Why can’t you understand that if we don’t have National Health Care the poor are just going to go to the emergency rooms for their care (that your taxes are paying for with Medicare and Medicaid) and that costs WAY MORE MONEY than a National Health Plan will cost? The Tax payers are ultimately going to pay the price, so why pay a higher price? The Republican’ts have to stick to this issue, I know, because it’s the only thing they can say bad about what Obama has accomplished. Hey, he got us out of Iraq and our “Few (fewer now thanks to “W”)Good Men” home. For that alone he has my vote. But hey, vote with your conscience...if you have one...you “Good Christian” you.
stepping up with some old school justice?
I cannot believe “Nit Wit Rommney” wants to stop providing birth control to the poor. Not even birth control pills! I can hear all you “Righty’s” whining, “Why should I pay for their out of wedlock sex?” I’ll tell you why, because then your going to have MORE POOR CHILDREN in the country, born into a home with (probably) no father and a child for a mother. You know those kids, the ones you care SOOO much about when they’re NOT BORN... but once they’re born you don’t want them to have a decent home, food, heath care or education. You don’t give a crap about them (Oh, but once they reach military age, they’re just what you’re looking for aren’t they?)! Hypocrites!!
Azziz discusses his opposition to the new WalMart off 15th Street that says he became especially concerned after reading in the paper that the city’s own attorney was dismayed that the meetings about the development and the sale of land were held behind closed doors. This from the guy who is suspected of being the architect of the secret merger talks that sealed the deal before the public was ever brought into the loop? Sounds rather hypocritical if you ask me.
I hate people. everyone sucks but me. I hid the spray. A person goes in, uses the bathroom, goes to find spray from another bathroom, and comes back to spray. IS THERE NO SHAME? The Twin Tragedies of GA Public Education: Students’ being promoted/ graduated when they have not learned to read, write, cipher and think well enough to succeed at the next level; and teachers’ being kept on the payroll when their respective students have not learned to read, write, cipher and think well enough to succeed at their next levels. The Charlie Rape Gang got off easy. What ever happened to people
38 METRO SPIRIT 03.15.12
Shut up and get a job. I don’t know why you think Richmond county Sheriffs office created a crime wave with Operation Smoke Screen. They busted an illegal fencing operation. They must have popped some of your peeps. Former first lady Barbara Bush said that the Republicans were terrible and negative in this campaign. Hello lady, we’ve known that since last year! As an atheist, I am amazed at the people who not only believe in God, but believe they know the truth and no one else does. The ones with the strongest convictions that they are absolutely right also use the worst grammar.
Shame on Bad Barbara Sims for pushing through to make us vote in the summer in just a few months. You knew that no one on the commission or other parties wanted it and you alone went to try to push it through. I hope the Senate sits on it so we wait til November to vote. If we can’t vote you out then, we will get to it when we can, Bad Barbara. I went to the Elton John concert Tuesday night and really enjoyed it. When reflecting upon what I liked most, I realized how glad I was that it was in Richmond County. It would have been such a shame for the entire floor and lower-sections to have been reserved for the friends and family of Ron Cross! If it’s not bad enough guys show their butt cracks, now women are doing it too. Shame on cracking out your butt cracks in sight!
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