Category: Newspaper columns

My checklist for selecting a great restaurant is growing

My checklist for selecting a great restaurant is growing

Photo: My wife checks out the decor at our favorite barbecue joint, Hungry Hillbilly’s, just outside of Jesup, Ga. I’ve written more than a few times about restaurants — the kind of food I like, the atmosphere I prefer and, especially, how to decide whether a restaurant at which you’ve never eaten will be worth trying. Quite frankly, after penning more than 2,000 newspaper columns over the years, I can’t be sure exactly which rules I’ve already covered, so I’ll go over my old rules fairly quickly: If you’re in some small town with which you’re unfamiliar and it’s lunchtime, […]

You can’t believe 1 percent of what 50 percent say

You can’t believe 1 percent of what 50 percent say

It has been said that there are three types of lies: Lies, damned lies and statistics. Polling has found that 58 percent of people believe that quote is from Mark Twain. The other 57 percent believe it’s from British Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli. Actually, Twain used the quote and attributed it to Disraeli, although there is no direct attribution that it came out that way from Disraeli. But, really, since the Internet was invented by Al Gore in an igloo, attribution has become pretty much irrelevant. We have folks in this country ready to shoot folks over completely made-up stuff […]

Forget Superman: I now present Uncle Rusty

Forget Superman: I now present Uncle Rusty

Comic books were a big deal when I was a kid in the 1970s and early 1980s. I don’t mean they were a big deal as far as collectibles go. They may have been. For me and my friends, however, every new issue of Spider-Man came with the excitement of a new season of “Ozark” dropping on Netflix or “The Handmaid’s Tale” on Hulu. Back then, we didn’t have Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Fox, Cartoon Network or … OK, we had like six channels — and two of them came in clearly. We were desperate for entertainment. And the movie […]

Short-shorts are coming back

Short-shorts are coming back

Photo: The NBA’s Hawks. Note, this is not this year’s team. It’s the St. Louis Hawks of the 1950s. Just in case you were confused. A lot of important things happened in 1957. The Braves won the World Series … the Milwaukee Braves, that is. And the Hawks made the NBA Finals before losing to the Celtics … the St. Louis Hawks, that is, of course. And John Pulman won the World Snooker Championship in a hard-fought 39-34 victory over Jackie Rea. Something else happened in 1957 that had way more folks snickerin’ than snookerin’ — a band called The […]

Let’s talk things out in ways that unite us

Let’s talk things out in ways that unite us

If you turn on Fox News or CNN or have a Facebook friend who gets all of their news from either one of these “news” sources — or the extreme versions of each like Newsmax and MSNBC — you likely have seen issues that are “tearing America apart” and “destroying life as we know it.” Or so they would have you believe, even though their examples often are anecdotal — such as one school board meeting breaking into fisticuffs over “critical race theory” or one group of peace-loving Capitol tourists lambasted as terrorists just because they wanted to hang Mike […]

Are UFOs real? The alien I met thinks so

Are UFOs real? The alien I met thinks so

The U.S. government has recently been a little more open about UFO sightings over the years — meaning they’ve shifted their official stance from complete denial that they exist to a more transparent and scientific “We ain’t got no idea.” I believe in objects. I believe things can fly. I believe things can exist without being identified. Therefore, I believe in UFOs, Unidentified Flying Objects. It doesn’t have to be controversial. For instance, last week I saw a fellow walking down the street and a friend asked me, “Is that Larry?” “I don’t think so,” I responded. “Therefore, it’s simply […]

Feathers are flying over chicken sandwiches

Feathers are flying over chicken sandwiches

When I was a tennis player back in high school — somewhere about the time they invented the sport — we often took road trips. The best thing about these road trips was stopping to eat before heading home. Today, when I see a school bus parked outside of a restaurant, I know two things are happening. One, the underpaid folks who work behind the counter are thinking something between “Oh great” and “I quit.” And, two, because I see 47 kids piling into the restaurant, I’m going somewhere else. But I was once one of those kids. I didn’t […]

Revenge of the nerds is getting out of hand

Revenge of the nerds is getting out of hand

When I was in junior high school, I dabbled in computer programming. By “programming,” of course, I mean that I bought magazines with basic DOS codes that I typed into a computer and produced simplistic video games that made Pong look brilliant. That was way back before Al Gore invented the internet as we know it — the place that today has led to such remarkable moments in human achievement like Grumpy Cat, Zoom meetings with Jeffrey Toobin, and mean tweets from Grumpy Cat’s third cousin twice-removed on his mama’s side, also known as the 45th president. Even in the […]