Thursday, March 15, 2012

Savannah cab companies get serious about barf

Posted By on Thu, Mar 15, 2012 at 2:50 PM

Its no coincidence that Ireland is shaped like a puddle of vomit
  • It's no coincidence that Ireland is shaped like a puddle of vomit
If you're planning on celebrating St. Patrick's Day in Savannah this weekend, it's likely you're also planning on vomiting in the backseat of a taxi. Savannah cab drivers are like, "Hey, not so fast." In an article that borders on brilliance, the Savannah Morning News talked to local taxi drivers who say companies are charging pukey passengers a fee of between $75 and $150. Here's what a fella named Robert Patterson had to say about driving around psychotic revelers on St. Paddy's Day ...
“I pick up couples at the beginning of the night and they’re so polite, wearing suits and ties, dresses and heels,” [Patterson] says. “I go get those same couples at the end of the night and hardly even recognize them. They argue the whole way home, with all their issues coming to bear in the back of my cab.”

Patterson attributes much of the extreme behavior to people who don’t normally drink but toss all inhibitions aside on St. Patrick’s Day.

[Fellow cabbie Lyle] Myers has learned that the hard way. He now keeps a bucket handy.

“It’s too expensive not to,” he says, though cab
companies do not foot the entire bill. Any customer who vomits in a cab has to pay a fee, which ranges from $75 to $150, depending on the company.

Patterson also shared this anecdote ...

“Last year, a man called at 6 a.m. asking to be picked up outside Wild Wing Cafe in City Market,” Patterson says. “When I got there, his shirt was tattered and he had twigs in his hair. He said he’d just woken up in the bushes and that a security guard told him he had to go. Then he said he couldn’t go home because, when he’d left the house, he’d told his wife that he was only going to the grocery store.”

What happens in Savannah DOES NOT STAY IN SAVANNAH, amirite? Except your money. If you puke in a cab. Good night.

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Monday, March 12, 2012

Best Craigslist post ever, hipster edition

Posted By on Mon, Mar 12, 2012 at 10:58 AM

OK, this isn't local, but a friend from Benteen Park who rehabs old bikes and sells them to hipsters is in NoLa at this moment looking for inventory and he sent this Craigslist post that sounds like it was written for McSweeney's. Here it is for your amusement:

Hipster-ass Hipster Bike for Hipsters - $180 (Bywater)

I am selling my Vista Carrera 7 road bike. Perfect for the aspiring culture creator. I have recently become a Successful Entrepreneur and I no longer have the need for such trifling possessions. I drive a gigantic cargo van that literally pisses gas onto the road to mark its territory.

Do you want to be noticed? Do you want to stand out from the crowd? Sleeve tattoo didn't do the trick? Dubstep bounce remix didn't go viral? Look no further than this bike. Don't even look past it in the pictures posted below. Import it into Photoshop and delete the background. I know you know how to do it, because you're a graphic designer.

Orange body. Green accents. Pink handlebar wrap. Some silver. Black. Dirt. Are there even any more colors? There are awesome reflective stickers on the bike, too, which makes darting out in front of automobiles on dark evenings and asserting one's absolute and total right of way even more self-righteously awesome. Dear motorist: Did you not see the stickers. Do you think I have time to just put stickers on things. I'm trying to save the world from people like you.

Continue reading »

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Thursday, February 16, 2012

'Ex-gays' gather outside Atlanta this weekend

Posted By on Thu, Feb 16, 2012 at 6:15 PM

"There are many questions out there about homosexuality. If you need answers, this is the conference for you."

So begins Exodus International's pitch for its "Love Won Out" conference this Saturday at Midway Church in Villa Rica, intended to "assist" and help others assist those "struggling with unwanted same-sex attractions."

Besides being a great place for "ex-gays" to hook up on the down low (jokes), the Southern Poverty Law Center says "Love Won Out" — a joint effort of Exodus International and everyone's favorite evangelical propaganda mill Focus on the Family — is a "dangerous" opportunity for the religious right to promote "conversion therapy."

Tomorrow morning, the SPLC and other advocacy groups are hosting a press conference to combat the "Love Won Out" doctrine ...

TOMORROW, Friday, February 17 the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), Truth Wins Out and other advocacy groups will hold a press conference exposing the dangers of conversion therapy.

Conversion therapy — sometimes known as reparative or “sexual reorientation” therapy — is a dangerous practice based on the premise that people can change their sexual orientation, literally “converting” from gay to straight. It has been discredited or highly criticized by virtually all major American medical, psychiatric, psychological and professional counseling organizations.

In addition to the press conference, the groups will host a community meeting for survivors of conversion therapy and individuals contemplating the therapy. The meeting will also be attended by individuals planning to participate in a protest of Exodus International’s Ex-Gay conference outside of Atlanta Saturday.

In the "Questions" section of Love Won Out's website, they combat the notion that they think homosexuality can be "cured" ...

The only time you’ll ever hear the word “cure” used in relation to our event is by those who oppose Love Won Out. They also like to claim we want to “fix” or “convert” gays and lesbians and that we believe people can “pray away the gay.” Such glib characterizations ignore the complex series of factors that can lead to same-sex attractions; they also mischaracterize our mission. We exist to help men and women dissatisfied with living homosexually understand that same-sex attractions can be overcome. It is not easy, but it is possible, as evidenced by the thousands of men and women who have walked this difficult road successfully.

OK, so "overcoming" homosexuality is what they're doing. Semantics.

The SPLC's press conference is at 10:30 tomorrow morning at the Phillip Rush Center, 1530 Dekalb Ave. NE, Suite A. Oh, and to be fair (for a change), Love Won Out takes place from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday at 3915 Carrollton Villa Rica Hwy. in Villa Rica.

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

"Glitch" routes Atlanta 911 calls to Savannah

Posted By on Wed, Jun 15, 2011 at 11:04 AM

If you called 911 for emergency services during the past six months-or-so, there was a remote chance your call could have been routed to a charming if distant city roughly 250 miles away.

According to the Savannah Morning News, about seventy 911 calls placed in Atlanta between January and April were erroneously routed to Savannah by an AT&T cell tower near I-20.

AT&T supposedly fixed the problem at the behest of the Savannah-Chatham Police Department, but on June 5, another caller from Atlanta found herself on the phone with a dispatcher in Savannah, not once but twice. Naturally, confusion ensued ...

AT&T says the glitch was fixed (really fixed) last week.

(H/T to the Atlanta Business Chronicle)

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Friday, November 19, 2010

AJC's Julia Wallace is "disappointed" by our mock DJC cover

Posted By on Fri, Nov 19, 2010 at 7:18 PM

Apparently, this week's CL cover story about the AJC's repositioning itself as a community newspaper for the northern suburbs didn't sit too well with that paper's editor, Julia Wallace.

That comes as no surprise. I'd interviewed Wallace briefly for my article, then followed up by e-mail with additional questions about the recent tone of the AJC's news coverage, the role of the "bias editor" and the offer to share news content with suburban weeklies. Wallace responded by saying my questions concerned her and indicated that the AJC wasn't planning to give short shrift to intown coverage.

"We have a renewed focus in our entire newspaper," she wrote. "Not just one area over another."

Now, that statement flies in the face of what I was hearing from recent and former AJC staffers, as well as what I've seen in its pages in recent months. While the daily paper hasn't stopped covering Atlanta, it has placed a visible emphasis — through story selection, placement and tone — on news from the northern 'burbs.

So when I found out Wallace had agreed to be interviewed about my cover story by WABE reporter Jim Burress, I couldn't wait to hear her reaction.

Continue reading »

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Sunday, August 22, 2010

Civil War POW camp in rural Georgia uncovered by archaeologists

Posted By on Sun, Aug 22, 2010 at 12:12 PM

  • Amanda Morrow
Archaeologists have uncovered one of the most significant Civil War discoveries in decades near Millen, Ga.

A Georgia Southern University archaeological team excavated numerous Civil War artifacts from the Confederacy's Camp Lawton, a prisoner of war camp in southeast Georgia that housed some 10,000 Union prisoners over a six-week period in late 1864.

Until now, the short-lived site has been of little interest to scholars. The camp's exact location was unknown, and archaeologists thought the possibility of finding anything significant was slim.

But experts are now calling the unexpected findings "one of the most exciting and intriguing Civil War discoveries of the modern era."

Continue reading »

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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

WSJ: Sea Island Co. to likely sell for 'stunningly cheap price'

Posted By on Tue, Aug 10, 2010 at 7:00 PM

  • Sea Island Co.
After more than 80 years under the control of one family, Sea Island, the barrier-island resort that for decades has been Georgia's playground for the rich, is expected to file for bankruptcy protection and be sold off to two funds.

The Wall Street Journalhas the details

Under a pact expected Wednesday, funds managed by Oaktree Capital Management LP in Los Angeles and Avenue Capital Group in New York are paying $197 million for Sea Island, a stunningly cheap price for the 84-year old resort famed for its four golf courses, exclusive clubs and hosting such events as the 2004 Group of Eight summit. Despite its fame, it hit the wall financially when it couldn't repay the debt taken on by fourth-generation chief Bill Jones III to finance a large renovation.

The deal is a sign of the changes taking place in the commercial real-estate landscape as banks begin to dispose of distressed assets and new land barons emerge. Until recently, banks have been reluctant to sell troubled loans and foreclosed property but the logjam is beginning to break.

If only you'd saved that $197 million you earned this summer maybe you could've become one of those "new land barons!" Way to slack off!

Some of the resort's woes, the WSJ and Atlanta Business Chronicle say, can be traced to a recent $395 million renovation that spruced up the posh resort and a nearby residential development project undertaken just as the housing market began to crater. Some of the resort's creditors will lose hundreds of millions in the deal.

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Monday, August 2, 2010

Georgia gets the 'This American Life' treatment

Posted By on Mon, Aug 2, 2010 at 11:00 AM

Nasal-voiced stud Ira Glass and his band of inquisitive pranksters descended upon the Peach State and produced an entire episode of "This American Life" about some of our most interesting characters.

From the show's website:

In the 1970s a reporter named Charles Salter wrote a column for the Atlanta Journal called "Georgia Rambler." He traveled to towns all over the state, in search of the most interesting people to interview. This week...we head to Georgia and try it for ourselves.

Among the subjects: a Douglas, Ga., music store owner; a curmudgeon found via a Chattooga County newspaper anonymous complaint feature that rivals the AJC's "Vent"; and a Pickens County soldier killed by an IED in Iraq.

Check out the episode here.

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Friday, July 2, 2010

"Patriots" deface highway graffiti in California

Posted By on Fri, Jul 2, 2010 at 11:09 AM

As we approach Fourth of July weekend, motorists traveling through Silicon Valley are feeling a little less patriotic after the California Department of Transportation painted over an American flag mural on one of the bay area's busiest freeways Wednesday.

To those who had passed by it every day for the last eight and a half years, the 35 foot mural was a symbol of patriotism and a work of art. But to Caltrans, the flag painted on the concrete retaining wall alongside Interstate 680 was simply more graffiti on state-owned property that had to be removed.

Eric Noda, R.J. Waldron and Thomas Hanley spent three hours roller painting the flag mural a week after 9/11 to express their patriotism following the terrorist attack. Noda voiced the objections of many regular 680 commuters about its removal: "It should not be classified as graffiti. I mean it was a well done flag and and I felt like it's part of America."

Hanley added: "There was already graffiti on (the spot). It would be better to have something that meant something to so many people."

The flag muralists are planning to ask Caltrans for permission to repaint the flag in time for the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

So what do you think? Display of patriotism or graffiti?

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Frisco to require head-cancer warnings

Posted By on Thu, Jun 17, 2010 at 3:12 PM

I use iCoif, the hairstyling app!
  • Photo stolen from Echelon Corp.
  • I use iCoif, the hairstyling app!
“Nobody loves his iPhone more than Mayor Newsom,” says Ton Winnicker, a spokesman for the San Francisco mayor, who enthusiastically supports a proposed city ordinance to require all cell phone retailers to display the "specific absorption rates" of their cell phones. The SAR measures the level of radiation being blasted into your head each time you call Mom.

Wouldn't everyone want to know that? Maybe not, considering it hasn't been proven to make much of a difference. Although the slight differences can vary among phones, the Federal Communications Commission requires every phone in the U.S. to have at or below the maximum SAR rate of 1.6 watts per kilogram. Mr. Newsom's phone (if it's a 3GS) is .79 watts per kilogram. Cool, numbers and decimals. But how much phone-gabbing can lead to brain cancer?

Nobody really knows. With no scientific studies leading to conclusive evidence of hazardous health effects, the label will be just another number. But in the super-green city of SanFran where everyone must compost and plastic bags are banned, the perils of modern technology are taken seriously, man.

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