There are times that I am amazed by some of the folks in my profession.
Sure, journalists have done plenty to earn a bad rap over the years, be it by the exploits of the paparazzi or reporters who brashly bash their way through communities and life.
And there's always the "slow news week" syndrome, where you have to work that much harder to finish stories to fill the space in the newspaper or in a TV newscast.
Such was obviously the case during a recent edition of Inside Edition. In the middle of college bowl season and in amazingly breathless tones, the anchor and reporter offered this piece of shocking breaking news: There's - gasp - alcohol at college tailgate parties across America.
That's right, folks. People are drinking before big football games. Some of them are drinking to the point of inebriation. Some of them are drinking to the point of having to take a short siesta before game time.
The crack journalists focused on the campus of LSU first, showing folks partaking from various bottles and one lucky coed doing a keg stand - which the talking head called a "maneuver." They then mentioned underage drinkers - showing video of one 17-year-old guy who couldn't pass for 21, even with the ID of a 23-year-old.
But the report was just getting started. How could they leave off footage from the World's Largest Cocktail Party in Jacksonville, Fla.? (For the uninitiated, that's the moniker earned by the annual Georgia-Florida football game and the perpetual party that surrounds it.)
The show "found" that there are hoards of people drinking in Jacksonville during Cocktail Week. That's like someone claiming they found someone wearing black and gold in Thomson on a Fall Friday night. It ain't that hard folks.
I'm still slack-jawed when I think about the five minutes of my life that I will never get back But that's OK, a slack jaw should make it easier to take a drink.
And after last week, I probably need to take few more drinks.
It's been years since I first cranked up my blue Jeep, and numerous payments, six sets of tires, one new transmission, a new radiator and a broken front seat later, the Grand Cherokee still gets me where I'm going. Now we can add a new water pump to that list.
Miriam and I were making a quick trip to Augusta Thursday and got caught in the mess surrounding a transfer truck accident near the weigh stations. It took us an hour to travel from the Harlem exit to the Grovetown exit, and somewhere along the way, the Jeep overheated. And it stayed that way until Russell Langham and Roy Cato - with the Jimmy and Dena's wrecker in tow - brought us back to Thomson.
But at least the thing is paid for. And it gets me to a couple of college football games each year. Even if there are (oh, the horror!!!) people drinking at my destination.