Hey good people,
I’m updating my site and moving it over to the WordPress empire. Hope to have it finished soon. In the meantime, here are some things I’ve had published in the past 30 days.
- You may have heard me mention this ESPN story on Muggsy Bogues a time or two.
- But the evening before Muggsy published, at the high-school showcase that kicked off NBA All-Star weekend in Charlotte, I met a young man named Carlos Santos. He’s a DACA recipient who’s ineligible for financial aid or in-state tuition. That’s a real shame because he’s also a 4.04 student. FOUR-POINT-OH-FOUR. On Thursday night, his life changed.
Last fall, I went on an unforgettable bus trip to Montgomery with 49 other Charlotteans, thanks to the Levine Museum of the New South and Bank of America. Charlotte magazine published my feature about the journey in its March issue. The online version went up February 12. The great Alvin Jacobs had the photos.
- It’s always fun to write for Garden & Gun. Really enjoyed working on this story on a talented woodworker named Wyatt Speight Rhue (have you ever heard of a more Southern name?) out of Swansboro, NC.
A little story about reporting this one: I pulled into town the day after the Swansboro Mullet Festival in November. It’s always strange to arrive in a small town the day after a festival. The signs still tell you where to park and where to not park, even though you’re the only one parking. You might pass the cotton candy guy as he drives away. My brother and I once stayed in Rockland, Maine, the day after the Maine Lobster Festival and listened to the bartender gripe about the tourists — “but not you guys,” he said. When you show up the day after a festival, they treat you like a local.
After spending most of the day with Wyatt, I got a room at a hotel on Emerald Isle. That afternoon, an essay I’d written about my dad — and strokes, and death, and his dislike of country music, specifically Randy Travis — went online for The Oxford American. I shared it on social media, checked in, ate dinner, went to bed. In the middle of the night, we had a hell of a storm. I checked my phone to see if it would ever end. Then I switched over to my email, and damned if I didn’t have a note from Randy Travis’s wife, Mary, telling me she loved the essay. At that exact moment, a tornado passed about a mile from my hotel. I saw the little bit of damage the next day. Then I went down and had a shrimp burger at Big Oak Drive-In and drove over the bridge and back to Speight’s shop.
(An added bonus: The photographer on this was Geoff Wood. The last time I worked with him was on a story about Richard Petty for Our State. Geoff is so damn good. Just look at this portrait of Speight.)
- Also in January, I took a few days to look into the numbers behind the Democrats’ gains in the south Charlotte neighborhoods for Carolina Public Press. I went precinct to precinct. I still think it’s funny that one precinct along the South Carolina border looks like … South Carolina.
- And, of course, last but hardly least, from the back page of your February issue, entering the arena at 31 pounds, the dog, the myth, the legend, your one and only, rain-hatin’, house-protectin’, duvet-eatin’, midday-nappin’, Laura-lovin’, squirrel-chasin’, good-dog-bein’ … GIZMO!!!!!!
Thanks for reading and for all your support. Hope to finish the website soon.