AUGUST 13, 2010 3:13PM

On my recent silence...

Though I was far from the most prolific person on OS, I've faded away even more recently. There are a few reasons for that. 

First, the murder case I was covering has been subdued of late. We're awaiting a tentative start date of Aug. 30 for jury selection in the federal… Read full post »

JULY 21, 2010 11:05PM

Sweet relief

My blood pressure was literally 15 points lower today than a week ago. 

Maybe because...

forest stream

...some time in the forest...


mtn river 

...watching water eddy past...



...or the world surge onward...



...or stopping for pristine and ephemeral b… Read full post »

JULY 13, 2010 11:16PM

This time tomorrow...

This time tomorrow, we'll be landing in...


Sure this video is a bit on the touristy side, but the production qualities are nice.
And if you knew our point of origin, you'd know how refreshingly stark a… Read full post »
JUNE 27, 2010 9:04PM

Can I see your ID, sir?

This guy…

ID 1

-Had one of best dogs he’s ever known.

-Was a year past a four-month grind where: he wrecked his car just barely enough to keep it from running altogether; blew out his ACL in his knee and couldn’t afford reconstruction or work for a month, living… Read full post »

Here we go again. For interested parties, I'll be on a Web talk radio show tonight discussing the Steve Nodine/Angel Downs murder drama. The show is entitled The Majority United and is hosted by women's rights advocate Betty Jean Kling. full post »

For interested parties, I'll be on a Web Talk Radio show tonight discussing the Steve Nodine/Angel Downs murder drama. The show is entitled Crime Wire and is hosted by former police investigator and author Denny Griffin, violence expert and author Susan Murphy-Milano and private eye and author Vito C… Read full post »

JUNE 21, 2010 10:52PM

Obama's assault? Really?

Here's the latest salvo from Bradley Byrne, the frontrunner in the race to be Alabama's governor. 

He edged Tim "If you want to live in Alabama learn English" James but faces another candidate in a runoff for the GOP nomination. Sure, there's the formality of a general election later this year,… Read full post »

Revelation has whispered and a toxic truth emerged, marring all it met.

Oil from the Deepwater Horizon gusher stretched eastward down the Gulf Coast, not only on the surface but in greater abundance beneath the waves than was originally told. The mire clogged the reeds and grasses, stained snowy… Read full post »

JUNE 6, 2010 4:47PM

Feds enter Gulf Coast murder saga

The rains are here. Each day is an oven until afternoon showers bring shade and steam. The sauna then unfolds and lasts through the night.

The oil has come too. Rusty toned goo is drifting toward the marshes and washing onto the sugar-white sands to the south. The protracted… Read full post »

MAY 31, 2010 1:17PM

The war within

Whenever these days of remembrance emerge, my mind revisits the following column I wrote in late summer of 2007. The occasion was the premiere of a Ken Burns documentary that featured the effects of WWII on Mobile.

I was lucky enough to briefly interview Burns. I recall what appeared toRead full post »

MAY 25, 2010 3:48PM

And the grand jury says...

The Baldwin County grand jury had one more day of duty. The next body would convene in September. District Attorney Judy Newcomb was pressing as hard as possible to have the Angel Downs murder case brought before them.

The more cynical locals mumbled about the election a week away. Others… Read full post »

The heat is climbing around Mobile Bay. May is past half-done and the summer has set in for good. The daily highs are in the mid-90s with 7-degree heat indices from the steamy air, a stifling brutal thing that can wring the life from all it touches. 

A season… Read full post »

Just a quick note to let anyone keeping up that things are blazing along. I attended a memorial ceremony for the deceased yesterday, spoke with an investigative veteran about forensics and have been filtering through search warrants, evidence lists and affidavits today. I will be at the impeachment h… Read full post »

Everyone on the Gulf Coast knows it’s the roux that makes a gumbo worthy. You can’t rush the dark butter base, just stir and stir. The patience pays off later in a dish that’s more than mere soup. 

There’s a gumbo brewing in Mobile, Ala. as county commissioner and politi… Read full post »

Get it while it's hot; the next big scandal in the murdered-pretty-blonde cycle before it hits the national circuit.  

Flamboyant Mobile, Ala. county commissioner and Republican party leader Steve Nodine has been named as a person of interest in the investigation of his mistress Angela Downs&rsq… Read full post »

MAY 5, 2010 1:04AM

Bye bye bayou

Look at this

bp spill 200 



What do you see? Well, the oil slick, of course, but wander left. Take a gander at Louisiana for a moment. Notice anything?

Well, if you’ve been looking at maps of the Bayou State for more than three decades, you see something… Read full post »

MAY 2, 2010 2:32PM

Run, Forrest, run

Political season in Alabama can be predictable. The ads for statewide office – the ones that need to sway lots of white folks, er, excuse me “good hard-working Americans” (I forgot the contemporary code words) – are a litany of who is further to the right. The attack ads invar… Read full post »

MAY 1, 2010 4:37PM

Irony washes in with the oil

The smell comes first. Residents in Mississippi and Louisiana are catching the first whiffs of disaster’s approach. The oil is on its way.

The sense of dread running down the central Gulf Coast grows heavier by the day. You can see it in the faces you meet, the voices you… Read full post »

APRIL 12, 2010 10:39PM

Warming up the insurrection

Call me a paranoid. Call me a prophet. Call me concerned. 

With every passing month, a new headline tells of another bold step, another push back against the federal government by people who seemed just fine with its course of action over the previous decade.

Chisel away at civil rights… Read full post »

APRIL 11, 2010 2:18PM

Petal Blight and Root Rot, Pt. 8

The Conclusion of  

Barrels of Lightning 


Saraland Mayor Oscar Driver was a prominent citizen in a young town surrounded by criminal activity. Driver focused on corruption in city government and was ready to make a move against the police chief along with most of the fire departmenRead full post »

APRIL 10, 2010 6:52PM

Azalea explosion

As I mentioned in last Sunday's Easter post, we've had a wealth of botanical color of late. These were all taken in our yard, from the bushes just outside the door. 



 The pygmy azaleas ringing the live oak in the yard.  




As brilliant as they… Read full post »

APRIL 9, 2010 6:58PM

Petal Blight and Root Rot, Pt. 7

Barrels of Lightning 


Oscar Driver was a big man so it took a lot to kill him. At almost six feet tall and close to 200 pounds, the first mayor of Saraland, Ala. appeared in control, ready for any challenge. Sure, he had his diversions but he could… Read full post »

APRIL 7, 2010 3:57PM

The South sinks again

Their outrage stokes my amusement. They seethe; I sigh.

Sure, I understand their defensiveness. Who wouldn’t bristle at some of the allegations and hyperbole? But, enough is enough. 

A fight over federal dollars set Seattle in direct competition with Mobile, Alabama, an aerospace contra… Read full post »

APRIL 4, 2010 5:58PM

Character in example

Easter is different this year because it's all here at once. Spring normally arrives piecemeal. First red camellias appear, then as they depart the azaleas come. Then they drop and others emerge, dogwood, what have you. 
Not this year. A longer winter has brought a simultaneous eru… Read full post »
APRIL 2, 2010 1:10PM

For Good Friday

Lost amidst the dogma and ritual is the inevitable core of the story... 


I was brought up in a fundamentalist household, ensconced in a religion that kept focus on the miracles and supernatural aspects and pushed parts of the Jesus story to the background.