Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Carlton: Signs men love, city songs, Gasparilla suds and honor among thieves

Signs, songs, suds, and honor among thieves: notes from the week that was:

Restoring our faith in accused criminals everywhere, a burly band of Hillsborough County jail inmates didn't think twice about jumping in to help a detention deputy being choked by another inmate.

In a fracas that made it all the way to Oprah, the men in jail-orange jammies were captured on video wrestling the bad guy — okay, the bad guy at the moment — off Deputy Kenneth Moon, maybe saving his life.

Our heroes were not a few fellas accused of shoplifting candy bars. Among their charges: attempted murder, home invasion, armed trafficking. Each will get a letter from the jail that lawyers can use to try to mitigate their cases. Seems fair.

Okay, so was it just me? Or did you see this strange scene — inmates helping the Man without hesitation, not piling on, not standing back — and think maybe there's good in even the baddest of us?

Speaking of bad behavior, Tampa deserves credit for working to clean up the bawdy beerfest that is Gasparilla after residents complained of a yearly siege of barfing in bushes and weeing in streets — among other acts of which Miss Manners would not approve.

More cops? Excellent. Better enforcement? Definitely. Additional portable toilets? Party on.

In this spirit, City Council member John Dingfelder also talked of asking stores not to sell beer that day and rejecting wet-zone requests from nonprofits. Okay, he meant well. But jeez, councilman, why don't you just take our Who pudding and our roast beast?

In the end, Dingfelder got it and backed off. Ditch those ugly traditions, but Gasparilla without beer? Not here.

Council member Mary Mulhern caught my ear in a discussion of those terrible lighted digital billboards that are a blight on our landscape. Like me, she seems to consider them ugly and unsafe, but also apparently believes them to be man magnets.

Opined Mulhern at a meeting: "I don't know any man who can drive by a digital billboard without looking at it. I can't get my husband's attention if he's watching TV, or my son, who will someday have a driver's license. It's just a genetic thing. So television screens all over the side of the road is really scary." Hey, she said it, not me.

In St. Petersburg, the self-proclaimed "uniter" beat the "divider" to be the new mayor, and no matter how you voted, it's a shame they won't have never-afraid-to-say-it Kathleen Ford to kick around anymore. But on to more pressing business: picking the official city song.

You have until midnight Monday to vote at www.stpete.org for one of these finalists: Carry Me Back to St. Petersburg, I'm Off to St. Pete, or Life's Sunny and Sweet in St. Pete. Gotta admire the rhyme on that last one, since I could find nothing to rhyme with "St. Petersburg."

I did try my hand at a song: Things sure are interesting in St. Pete, where they like to give away that BayWalk concrete …

No, no, no. Think happy. Think Tampa's song, I Am Tampa, about which even the mayor said, "Okay, it's not New York, New York."

Sample lyric: Got a smile on my face and it won't go away. 'Cause the place I call home makes me feel that way …

Which tends to be true, given what goes on any given week around here.

Carlton: Signs men love, city songs, Gasparilla suds and honor among thieves 11/06/09 [Last modified: Friday, November 6, 2009 6:36pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Joss Whedon's ex-wife accuses him of cheating, being 'hypocrite preaching feminist ideals'

    Celebrities

    Joss Whedon made his name directing cult television shows such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and big-budget action movies, which often featured women in empowering roles. Many applauded him for being a champion of women, a feminist in an industry accused of misogyny and sexism.

    Joss Whedon at the screening of "Much Ado About Nothing" in 2014. Whedon's ex-wife Kai Cole alleged in an essay published by The Wrap on Sunday that Whedon had multiple affairs during their 16-year marriage. (Associated Press)
  2. Pasco school's parents, principal seek compromise on behavior plan

    Blogs

    Leaders of a Pasco County elementary school that has come under criticism for its new behavior plan have offered an alternative model that sticks to its goals while also better considering younger children who might not understand the original terminology.

    This is the original chart that upset parents with wording such as "anarchy" and "conform to peer pressure" without any context.
  3. Jon Gruden, Rex Ryan meet with Jameis Winston on 'Hard Knocks'

    Bucs

    One of the interesting guest stars on HBO's "Hard Knocks", which covers every minute of the Bucs' training camp and preseason, has been Jon Gruden. The legendary former Tampa Bay coach has popped up from time …

    In a teaser clip from episode 3 of "Hard Knocks", Jon Gruden and fellow former coach Rex Ryan meet with Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston to discuss his past and future in the NFL. [HBO/NFL FILMS]
  4. German police seize thousands of 'Trump' ecstasy tablets

    National

    BERLIN — German police say they have seized thousands of tablets of the party drug ecstasy in the shape of Donald Trump's head, a haul with an estimated street value of 39,000 euros ($45,900.)

    This undated  picture provided by Polizeiinspektion Osnabrueck police shows an ecstasy pill. German police say they have seized thousands of ecstasy pills in the shape of President Donald Trump's head, a haul  with an estimated street value of 39,000 euros ($45,900). Police in Osnabrueck, in northwestern Germany, say they found the drugs during a check Saturday evening on an Austrian-registered car on the A30 highway. [Police Osnabrueck via AP]
  5. Bucs bring back long snapper Andrew DePaola to compete

    Bucs

    Just 12 days before the NFL makes its final cuts, the Bucs have added another position battle, signing back long snapper Andrew DePaola to compete with veteran Garrison Sanborn.

    Andrew DePaola is making an impressive recovery from the torn ACL he suffered in last year's season finale against Carolina in January.  [LOREN ELLIOTT | Times]