WEDNESDAY’S LIST ... of beans ’n greens ’n other things:


HEARD FROM an old “roomie” of mine this past week.

His name is Fred Burger and he enclosed clippings of some age from The Star.

One clipping carried the headline:

30th Division

Arriving Here

For Training

A subhead read:

Billy Graham To Appear

At Fort McClellan

On Aug. 21

The clipping was dated Aug. 14, 1954, some 60 years ago. The Rev. Graham is still with us at age 95. He  has probably outlived a large number of the young men he preached to that day.

That “roomie” thing?

For that you can also go way back.

Fred was covering politics here at The Star, I was then as now a general columnist. What the powers that be did was send Fred and I to cover both 1988 political conventions.

In Atlanta, the Democrats nominated Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis for president.

In New Orleans later that summer, the Republicans nominated George H.W. Bush.

The ticket of Bush and Dan Quayle clobbered Dukakis and Lloyd Bentsen.

All of that is to say Fred and I were roommates. Fred did the heavy lifting (reporting) and kept his side of the room rather messy. I did the light work, running the streets and writing about whatever struck my fancy. I also kept my side of the room very neat.

Hey, that’s in my genes.

In my sports writing years, I often roomed with the late Jimmy Bryan of The Birmingham News, one of the more talented sports writers ever in our state.

Jimmy was even messier than Fred.

Asked once who he was rooming with on a trip, Jimmy’s reply was a classic:

“Oh, I’ve got Mother Smith again.”

I’m not sure what you can do with the above, but it is a brief moment or two in a real fun life that I’ve been blessed with.


FROM WHAT we once called “City Briefs” there was this from one of Fred’s clippings.

“Babies born at Memorial Hospital yesterday included boys to Mr. and Mrs. James Barry of Anniston, Rt.1, and Mr. and Mrs. Floyd Garrick of Jacksonville, Rt. 2”

That was Aug. 20, 1954. Anybody got an update?


QUOTABLE: “In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress.” – John Adams


THAT OLD bromide of truth being stranger than fiction has some foundation. Two cases in point I ran across this past week:

1. In Jackson, Tenn., Shona Carter-Brooks wanted her one-month-old daughter to be part of her wedding. So what Shona did was walk down the aisle with daughter Aubrey riding her wedding dress train.

Honest, I saw the pictures.

2. Then there was Ray Tomlinson, who, with his girlfriend and mom, set out to drive the 1,900 miles from Phoenix, Ariz., to Warren, Mich.

Somewhere along the way his girlfriend died. Tomlinson found that out when he reached over to check in her “sleep.” She was already cold and stiff, he said.

He kept going. Said he knew if he stopped the authorities would confiscate his van. No charges have been filed.


BIRTHDAYS: June 8 – Johnny Burdette; June 9 – Ann Peoples; June 12 – Donna Blair; June 14 – Sage Snow.

Thanks for visiting ...


George Smith may be reached at 256-239-5286 or email: