Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Monday's Quick Hits: Comments on the news, the family rooster and the Bengals

New Floridian: Actually, it's a new-old Floridian magazine, a throwback to the magazine of the same name last published by this newspaper in the 1980s. The first new issue, which debuted Sunday, looked like a good start in providing an outlet for the kind of writing that has helped make the Times famous — what we newspaper folks rather grandly call long-form journalism.

Lots of good stuff by several of the paper's best writers, though I have to say my favorite piece wasn't long at all. It was Lane DeGregory's column about her teenage son taking over some of the family driving duties.

I also enjoy not being a part-time chauffeur, though I miss the drives to school with my older son every morning, listening to news on the radio and getting a few precious moments to chat with a not-very-chatty kid.

Bye, Phil: That son was also the chicken lover I wrote about a few weeks ago, the defender of a male chick we inadvertently purchased a few months ago and that grew up, as male chicks tend to do, into a rooster. A very loud rooster that, with the big, bright moons last week, made a mockery of the notion that roosters crow only at dawn.

Phil managed to crow non-stop from 3 until 8 o'clock, morning after morning. I might have even been impressed by the sheer volume of noise produced by a relatively small source — right up there with a smoke alarm, I swear — if I hadn't been so full of murderous rage. Even my son realized that keeping Phil and maintaining a decent relationship with our neighbors was a mutually exclusive proposition.

So, on Sunday, we dropped Phil off at the home of a friend of mine I've written about before and who is perfectly named for this purpose — Dave Cock. A neighbor of his has a few hens, he said, and so Phil might get to be a breeder. More likely, though, the run that we put him in was just a layover on the way to Phil's ultimate destination in a crock pot.

My son was more stoic about this than I expected, watching quietly as Phil crowed and pecked and got used to his surroundings. But I know he was sad inside because even I was sad, and suddenly thought of Phil as I do of some people — that he wouldn't be so bad if he just knew when to keep his mouth shut.

Disapppointed!? I was amazed at the nerve of officials at the state Department of Environmental Protection who said they were "disappointed" that the federal Environmental Protection Agency will finally get around to enforcing its water pollution rules for most of the state's rivers and lakes.

They're disappointed? This is what I thought when I read the story in Saturday's Times: Disappointment is the mildest term I can think of to express the way we should all feel about the job the state has done in safeguarding water quality. I mean not safeguarding, because I don't get to show my kids this state's once crystal-clear springs; I have to let my sons imagine what they'd look like without all the algae and tell them that crystal clear is what they used to be.

Another regulatory success:

You may have read, right above the water-quality story, about a panel that was supposed to come up with a plan to protect the vulnerable folks in the state's assisted living facilities, a plan that was desperately needed judging from the multiple cases of hideous abuse and neglect documented by the Miami Herald last year. The panel, formed by Gov. Rick Scott, released its final report last week and recommended, essentially, that we don't need any more stinking rules. In fact, we got too many rules already.

Who Dey?

Not to rub it in, Bucs fans, but with a fourth straight Bengals victory on Sunday, I am now, officially, the fan of a genuine playoff contender, and I have to say it feels pretty darn good.

Monday's Quick Hits: Comments on the news, the family rooster and the Bengals 12/03/12 [Last modified: Monday, December 3, 2012 9:21am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Quiet college dropout turned bomber: Who was Salman Abedi?

    World

    LONDON — He was quiet and withdrawn, a college dropout who liked soccer — and, some say, showed alarming signs of being radicalized years before he walked into a pop concert at Britain's Manchester Arena and detonated a powerful bomb, killing himself and 22 others.

    Salman Abedi was identified by British authorities as the man behind Monday’s attack.
  2. Soldiers launch attacks in besieged Philippine city

    World

    MARAWI, Philippines — Backed by tanks and rocket-firing helicopters, Philippine troops launched "precision attacks" Thursday to clear extremists linked to the Islamic State group from a city that has been under siege since a raid that failed to capture one of Asia's most-wanted militants.

    Soldiers fire at enemy positions Thursday while trying to clear the city of Marawi, Philippines, of armed militants.
  3. Back to .500, Rays feel ready to roll (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Who wants to be mediocre? Middling? Average? Run-of-the-mill?

    Rays catcher Jesus Sucre tags out the Angels’ Mike Trout trying to score from second base after a perfect peg from rightfielder Steven Souza Jr. in the first inning.
  4. Seminole man accused of fracturing 8-month-old baby's leg

    Crime

    Deputies arrested a Seminole man Thursday after he fractured an 8-month-old baby's bones, the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office said.

    Gary G. Gibeault of Seminole was arrested on a charge of aggravated child abuse.
  5. St. Petersburg's ballooning sewage debt could threaten credit rating (but there's a Hail Mary plan to avoid that)

    Local Government

    ST. PETERSBURG — The city needs a lot of money — $435 million over the next five years — most of it to fix its leaky sewer pipes and aging sewer plants.

    In September 2016, signs at St. Petersburg’s North Shore Park warned people to stay out of the water due to contamination from sewage released by the city’s overwhelmed sewer system. The City Council on Thursday learned that the very expensive fix for its sewage woes could hamper the city’s credit rating. [LARA CERRI   |   Times]