Wanda CampbellI am not a big fan of YouTube, and most of the time I ignore the posts in my Facebook or email account. I was of the group that thinks most of the YouTube postings were silliness or family pictures. I am not interested in silliness, and I don’t feel right viewing anonymous family pictures.

My son, Ben, is an avid viewer. He recently told me I could subscribe to cooking, lectures, and other interesting how-to videos. He also told me about the TED Talks that are posted on YouTube. TED Talks are speeches from the annual TED (Technology Entertainment Design) Conference. The TED website boasts riveting talks by remarkable people, free to the world.

Mark ForsythTo make sure I would be really interested, he sent me a clip – Mark Forsyth: What is a snollygoster? A Lesson in Political Speak. There were two reasons to watch. One is the word – snollygoster. What a great word! I had to know more. The second reason to watch was the “Lesson in Political Speak.” As we get ready to elect a new president, I thought I should know even more about political speak.

Mark ForsythIn his talk, Forsyth tells us that a snollygoster is a dishonest politician, someone who seeks office regardless of party, platform or principles. He said that words were at the very center of politics, because it allows politicians to control the language. And then, he tells of the discussion about naming George Washington’s position as leader of the country. It seems the House of Representatives did not want George to get a big head, and they suggested a lowly title – President. President, at the time, meant someone who presides over a meeting. The Senate wanted a great title, like King or Magistrate, that would be accepted in international events. After three weeks of debate, the House of Representatives agreed to use the title of President as a temporary measure. According to Forsyth, the Senate has never formally endorsed the title of President.

Forsyth said there were three things to come away with from his discussion. The first was that President Obama is living on borrowed time – any minute they will take away his title of President. The second thing is a “government temporary measure” is really a permanent thing. The third thing is that the President of the US is not that humble these days. There are 147 countries that use that title now, so in the end the Senate won, and House of Representatives lost.

In his conclusion, Forsyth said that politicians try to use words to shape the reality they hope to create, but reality changes words far more than words can change reality.

By: Wanda Campbell


According to Encarta New World Dictionary, 2009, a snollygoster is a “(U.S.) self-seeker: somebody, especially a politician, whose actions are motivated by self-interest rather than by high principles ( slang ) [Mid-19th century.]”

How in the world does one begin to fathom what would motivate a Taliban gunman to shoot a 14 year old Pakistani girl in the head because she wants to go to school? The simple answer is evil, something we faced down routinely in Iraq. On our camp, which is where the fledgling Iraqi Special Forces was formed and trained, there was an inside job that resulted in the deaths of more than a dozen trainees. They were all kidnapped and beheaded, and the head of one was sent in a box to his widow.

CourageInsurgents would also control and manipulate whole neighborhoods through fear, the worst example being a “feast” that was thrown by Al-Qaeda, and the “entrée” was one family’s nine year old child, who had been missing. They roasted him, and told those present that the same thing would happen to their children if they cooperated with the Coalition.

I am not being gratuitous, here, in my description of evil. I have no desire to shock or alarm any reader of Athens Now. But it is so easy, (in the current climate of political correctness that is insisting that FBI training manuals no longer make any references to terrorism and Islamofacism,) to forget what we are really up against.

Then along comes this gutsy little girl named Malala Yousafzai, who does what teens do throughout the West: she posts videos of herself online, and rather than blather on about what she is going to do this weekend, makes quite the case for something we in America take for granted, i.e., the opportunity for girls, (and boys, for that matter,) to go to school.

And what is the response of the “courageous servants of Allah?” A plot is hatched to silence Miss Malala forever by murdering her in cold blood. Only, Miss Malala survives, the Brits spirit her out of Pakistan and back to the UK where she gets the best of care, and surgeons say she is not only going to survive, she is going to recover.

And the Taliban’s response? They vow that they will hunt her down, no matter where in the world she is hiding, and they will not rest until they have completed their mission and stilled her voice. That might take some doing, though, because throughout Pakistan there have been demonstrations, and little Malala and her plight has gone “viral” on the Internet. Muslims, Christians, Jews and secularists everywhere are denouncing the Taliban’s actions, and as unbelievable as it sounds, the Taliban is whining about it, essentially saying that they are the victims here.

To say that the Taliban has been exposed once again for its insane hatred of freedom and maniacal insistence upon control is an understatement. The question is, will we grow weary in well-doing, first of all in resisting those who would usurp our own Constitution and replace it with something else, as well supporting those in other lands whose freedoms are so routinely quashed through fear? At the end of the day, I believe evil springs from fear, and the only thing that casts it out is love. May God have mercy on both little Malala and her malevolent maurader, and may justice, true justice spring out of this assault on a child.
By: Ali Elizabeth Turner

Diva Nails

Lynne Hart
Decorating for the holidays can be fun.  It can also be expensive!

Here are a few ideas using items you may already have at home.  Save some green while being green and have a Happy Halloween!

Milk Jug Ghosts

Halloween Milk JugsCollect some empty milk jugs.  You can use gallon or half-gallon containers.  Make sure you wash them thoroughly.

On the opposite side from the label, use black paint or a black Sharpie marker to create funny or scary ghost faces.  Leave caps on while you do this so the jugs won’t dent.

If you have white paint, use it to color the caps white.  You can also use your paint or marker to paint the caps black.

Cut a 2″-3″ hole in the back of the jugs (this is an adult job).

Line up your ghosts.  Place portions of a string of 50 clear low-wattage holiday lights into each jug.  Plug them in and they’ll brighten your holiday!

Window Critters
Use large pieces of cardboard or other material you have available that will fit in the windows you have selected to decorate.
Draw the outline of your critter and cut out (let an adult do the cutting). Paint the critter black.

Use cellophane to cover mouth, eyes, and other openings as shown in the picture.  Attach to the back of your critter. You can use light colored markers to add accents to the cellophane.

Make sure the lights are on in the room so your critters can be clearly seen from outside!

Ghosts Suckers

Ghost SuckersHere’s a great idea to dress up your Halloween sucker treats! Use whatever size suckers you like. Cut out squares of white fabric or tissue paper large enough to cover the sucker leaving enough to cover most of the sucker stick.

Using black string or ribbon, tie a bow tightly just under the sucker.  You can dress it up a bit by using orange or colorful ribbon if you have it available. Add ghost faces using a black marker. Enjoy the smiles as you give these to your guests!
By: Lynne Hart

Athens Kids Mart

Shelley UnderhillIf you like cornbread and a hint of broccoli, then this is a must try for you and your family. When the weather started getting cool, I had a serious craving for some really good broccoli-cornbread. I found myself on a mission for just the right recipe…

The recipe that follows will please your tastebuds and keep your friends and family coming back for more. And it’s really easy too! Let me know if you try it or if you have any recipes for this type of bread. Enjoy!

Broccoli Corn Bread

Email your questions and recipes to shelleysdesk@gmail.com

Las Trojas Cantine

Veteran's Day

American EagleThe 5th annual Veterans’ Day Parade is set to be held on the 3rd of November at 11 am. This year the Grand Marshall is going to be a WWII POW by the name of Dempsey McLemore, and Dempsey has quite the story to tell. He was part of the 82nd Airborne, and parachuted into France behind enemy lines. His mission was to blow up bridges, destroy power grids and communications systems, and in general, wreak havoc upon and cause mayhem for the Germans. He was captured and held in a German prisoner of war camp. Ultimately he was rescued by the Russians, returned to the States, built a life, and became part of the Greatest Generation. He lives here with his wife, Virginia.

Another participant in the parade will be Lt. General Richard Formica, who is the Commander of the U.S. Army Space and Missile Command/Army Forces Strategic Command at Redstone Arsenal.

I mentioned that this is the 5th Annual Veterans’ Day Parade, and the fact that it is only the 5th one makes me wonder, why? I know it’s football season, people are busy, and no one needs any more guilt dished on them. I also know that for most of my life I looked upon Veterans’ Day as a time when there would be good sales being held, it would be a three day weekend, and the banks would be closed. I was disconnected from the whole meaning of the day, as is the case with many, I am afraid.

American FlagWhy should we bother to take a little more than an hour out of our day to stand in what could be really chilly weather and watch some floats, marching bands and horse riders go by while we wave at them? So many reasons, the first being that, as actor Tom Hanks has said so famously, “It’s time to say thank you.” The Veterans of WWII are not getting any younger, and these treasures need to be treasured before they are gone forever. Same for Veterans of the Korean War, often referred to as the “Forgotten War.” I had the experience of saying “thank you” to a Korean War vet who is the father of a friend a few years back, and he said I was the FIRST one in his entire life to do so! What a shame.

In wouldn’t hurt to take the time to thank those who fought in Vietnam, either. In a “former life,” people like me made life hell for people like them, and while being vilified is incredibly tough, I think that it is actually worse to be ignored, which is something I am afraid is going to happen to those who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

So, if you can, and I really do mean that without an ounce of snark, take the time to come out on November 3rd You can reflect for a moment on the courage of those who have put themselves in harm’s way, either long ago or just recently, so that you and people you’ll never meet can be free to go to a parade in the first place.
By: Ali Elizabeth Turner

Limestone Drug Company

Snack HealthyRecently I have had the joy of getting to know a diverse group of healthy-minded women who make up a growing team that goes by the name of Team Snacks ‘n Shakes. They are part of a direct marketing company called Snack Healthy, whose products are gluten free, soy free, non GMO, and are compatible for those who are both vegan or who eat kosher as a part of their lifestyle.

Before I tell you about the products and the upcoming Snack Healthy event to be held at the Senior Center on the 27th of October, I would like to tell you more about the crew.

Pam Blackburn is the team leader, and comes from a background of corporate involvement and management in the telecommunications industry. She was the owner of a cellular phone franchise store, and found she needed to look for a new line of work when the economy went sideways. She is passionate about health, loves to go walking and running, and daily faces the challenges of caring for loved ones who have severe health problems. Pam’s “other job” is caring for her mom, (who has Alzheimer’s,) and other family members are dealing with such diseases as cystic fibrosis, diabetes and cancer. She is understandably highly motivated both to be healthy and to build a healthy business.

Suzanne RaineySuzanne Rainey is the Vice President of the Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs of Northern Alabama, and, her part of the “why” for being on this team is the pain of the loss of several family members to cancer; the most recent being her sister, who succumbed to breast cancer in 2010. In addition, her father died of a heart attack at the age of 48. Her “message,” when it comes to cancer, is that “prevention is the cure.” Snack Healthy is whole food, the consumption of which is one of the most powerful tools in the fight against cancer, and Suzanne wants to get those tools into the hands of everyone. “What sold me on Snack Healthy products is that they are whole, and the sweetener is stevia,” she added.

Cynthia CrossCynthia Cross is a fitness trainer/instructor, and successful in her trade by any definition. She has more than 200 clients enrolled in her Fitness Camp, and the name of her business is Life Changing Fitness. She is passionate about fitness, and this includes eating healthy. She states, “Snack Healthy provides on-the-go parents and kids the opportunity to snack healthfully, and the products are portion controlled.” Cynthia is slated to be one of the speakers at the October 27th breakfast event.

Tammy Waddell is a Lt. in the Limestone County Sheriff’s Department, and has worked there since 1998. Her reason for becoming involved with Snack Healthy centers around the desire to change her own lifestyle and improve her health. She is eating healthy, working out with Cynthia Cross, has lost weight, and is having an impact on the health of our law enforcement personnel in the Sheriff’s Department by encouraging her colleagues, including Sheriff Blakely, to incorporate Snack Healthy snacks and shakes into their daily eating plan.

These gals have pooled their resources to put on an event called “Get Healthy With Snack Healthy,” and it will be held on Saturday, October 27th at the Athens Limestone Senior Center at 8 am. The Senior Center is located at 912 Pryor Street. The purpose of the event is three fold: to educate our community on the importance of a healthy lifestyle, make samples and information on Snack Healthy available for those who are interested in the product, and introduce those who may be interested in a home based direct marketing business to the Snack Healthy team.

Other speakers for Get Healthy With Snack Healthy get together will be Kathy West, Co-Owner of Snack Healthy, and Jim Kenney, the company’s top earner.

Snack Healthy’s products are delicious, as I will freely attest. They have an energy drink called Zing that gives a burst of energy, “but without the jitters.” Zing has about the same amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee, and no artificial colors, flavors, or sweeteners. Crispy Fruit comes in a pack, with your choice of dried fuji apples, pineapple or bananas. Real Fruit is dehydrated as well, but a bit softer. The fruit choices for Real Fruit are similar as those of Crispy Fruit, but with the addition of mango and apricot. There are also fruit bars, pretzels, popcorn and shakes, all whole food, tasty and nutritious. There will be samples of Snack Healthy products at the event.

Team Snacks ‘n Shakes is also serving a healthy and complimentary breakfast for those who register for the event by October 25th. To register, call Tammy at 256-434-0663, or email Pam at supermimi236@gmail.com.

Be sure to mark your calendar for Get Healthy With Snack Healthy, and come to an event that will be sure to build your health and your community.
By: Ali Elizabeth Turner

Snack Healthy

Ronnie MarksI had the chance to speak with Mayor Ronnie just on the heels of Governor Bentley’s visit to Athens on Monday, October 15th. Mayor Marks attended the event, which was held at the Center for Lifelong Learning, and sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce. The purpose of the Governor’s visit was to discuss the importance of passing Amendment 2 in the upcoming election. Amendment 2 would change Alabama’s constitution so that if interest rates go down, debts carried by the state could be refinanced at a lower rate, much like one’s personal mortgage. Amendment 2 would free up revenue for economic development.

Yesterday was the day our Mayor had us “Paint The Town Pink.” He made a proclamation setting October 18th as the date we would all wear pink, say the word pink, or mention the Pink Elephant Mammogram Scholarships to show support for those who have been afflicted by breast cancer. By doing so when we went to Chick-fil-a, the franchise on Hwy 72 donated part of its proceeds to help in the fight. There was also a Pink Elephant Day luncheon held at the Limestone County Event Center, and in all, Athens is turning out in force all year long to fight cancer.

Most folks are aware that Mayor Ronnie is a Vietnam veteran, and active in the local veterans’ community. He is hoping that there will be a solid showing of support for our vets of all branches by attending the Veterans’ Day parade to be held on Saturday, November 3rd.

Most often when we get together every two weeks for his interview, he tells me about something that inspired him at church, or a book, scripture or devotional that spoke to him in his ongoing quest to become a better man and a better Mayor. This time he had two things. One had to do with the concept of interdependence. It says the following:

“Interdependence is a choice only independent people can make. Dependent people cannot choose to become interdependent. They don’t have the character to do it; they don’t own enough of themselves.”

Daily Reflections for Highly Effective People, pg 290

I thought about that for a while, and normally I would think that owning oneself would stand in the way of moving toward interdependence, but then we concluded that if you don’t have yourself in the first place, there’s no way you can give yourself away in the right way for your own good or the good of others.

Then he moved to another reflection on pg 31 from the same book. Ironically, it was a quote by Thoreau, and a good one, no less. It said:

“For every thousand hacking at the leaves of evil, there is one striking at the root.”

Covey went on to comment on Thoreau’s statement by saying:

“We can only achieve quantum improvements in our lives as we quit hacking at the leaves of attitude and behavior, and get to work on the root, the paradigms from which our attitudes and behaviors flow.”

Whether the “leaves” are the evil of cancer, or effects of our immaturity or lower nature, I for one am glad that we have a Mayor who wants to go for the root, and that is one of the many things that makes Ronnie roll.

By: Ali Elizabeth Turner

Shoe Gallery

Jeanette DunnavantAs our 2011-2012 year came to an end, I looked back over the past 12 months and I am amazed to see how many new events and successful events we had this year. It has been a fantastic year for our tourism industry. I predict that 2012-2013 will be an even bigger and better year.

Our new tourism year began October 1st with a bang. The Haunts Walks sold out, Bean Day had a great turn out, Wacky Quacky Ducky Derby had a record number of ducks adopted, and the 46th Annual Tennessee Valley Old Time Fiddlers’ Convention had a record crowd on Friday night. If the rain had held off on Saturday, I think Saturday would have also been a record breaking crowd.

All that is behind us and there is so much to look forward to attending in this fiscal year. On October 20th Chick-fil-A will have their Fall Festival with lots of great games and food. The annual Rails to Trails Fall Walk/Ride will be Oct 27th& 28th and leaves should be at their peak. It’s the perfect time to bring the kids and enjoy the 10 mile walk. If you prefer, bring your bicycles and horses and enjoy the trail. No motorized vehicles are allowed.

We will wrap up October with the 6th Annual Athens Storytelling Festival on October 25th – 27th. The school children will get to attend free again on October 24th& 25th thanks to our local legislators. Athens State University is bringing John McCutheon and his folk music to the tent on October 25th. This man will amaze you with his talent as he plays numerous instruments.

The Spirit of Athens will use the Storytelling Tent October 22nd and will be showing the movie “The Goonies.” Admission is only $3.00. Bring the entire family and enjoy the movie.

November events will begin with the Annual Athens Veterans’ Day Parade on November 3rd at 11:00 AM. On November 10th the Alabama Veterans Museum will celebrate their 10th anniversary and have a rededication ceremony. The annual Athens and Ardmore Veterans’ Day Ceremonies will be on November 11th. We all look forward to the Annual Christmas Open House downtown November 17th& 18th. Open House is the perfect time of year to find that special Christmas gift.

As you can see, even though the weather is getting chilly, there’s still plenty to do in Athens and Limestone County. We are all looking forward to more events for 2013.

For information about the above events and other Athens-Limestone County events call 256-232-5411/256-867-1438or visit our website www.VisitAthensAL.com.
By Jeanette Dunnavant, President, Athens-Limestone County Tourism Association

Issue October 5, 2012

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October 5, 2012

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