Donald Ross, Benjamin Martin and One Bad Brutha

January18/ 2000

….. I had grown weary of the muck and mire.  Just too much defecation flying thru the fan blades lately.  I needed a break from 24/7 “Saving America From Itself”.  I found solace amid the tall pines and over-priced club sandwiches of Pinehurst.  The ever-evolving socio-cultural battlefield continues to ever-evolve.  And Crazy Cuzzin Jackie gets a humdinger of a dance partner at Club Nifong.

Spend 24 hours at Pinehurst and you might forget that America is hurtling itself pell-mell into a ideological black hole of internal annihilation.  Exactly what I needed to recharge.

I was the guest of City of Hope cancer hospital in Los Angeles.  The hospital has a nation-wide development campaign for its research and treatment of cancer.  One of their most successful programs involves the national Office Products industry.  Once a year the CEOs and upper level bigwigs within the industry gather in Moore County for golf, fellowship and substantial check-writing.  BobLee and 2-time US Open winner Andy North were invited to be on-hand this year.

Yesterday Andy and I spent the morning on the 17th tee of Donald Ross’ masterpiece Pinehurst #2 and cajoled the assorted corporate titans of the office products industry.  Andy used a 7 iron.  I used my rapier-like wit and legendary charm.

Over the course of five hours we pretty much solved most of society’s ills.  Andy is a big-time “24” fan.  Most folks whose company I can tolerate for five hours tend to be big-time “24” fans.  As an ice-breaker it sure beats what your sign? or got a light?.  I had known Andy casually for some years but now would quickly choose Andy North as a Jeopardy category …. And he me.

We were joined on the 17th tee by Matt …. A veteran Pinehurst caddy of great renown.  Each of us added our conversational specialties to the percolating crock-pot of opinion and comment.  Not a bad way to pass a beautiful day in “the Sandhills”…. Not a bad way at all.  Matt claims he can pick out a big tipper by the 3rd hole.

#2 is now up to $375 for 18 holes.  Pinehurst keeps #2 at about $15 under Pebble Beach’s daily green fee.  If one is staying at Pinehurst Hotel, the greens fee is reduced but more than compensated by assorted other fine print charges on one’s expense-accounted final bill.

I kept an informal tally and the words Imus, Nifong, and Krazy Korean Kid were mentioned only once …. Brendan Wright was not mentioned at all nor were starting dates for a Kenan Stadium expansion or how many N&O sportswriters are graduates of the UNC J-school.  The answer on that last one is, of course, zero …. But do not tell the wuff-loonies.  It is comforting to be reminded that there are pockets of group activity on the planet where a broader level of topics are discussed.  Does civilization have a modicum of hope to survive?

I had an incredible dessert soufflé Monday night.  It is not in my NutriSystem plan but I only had one so no need to say any Hail Marys for my indiscretion.  By the way …. Thinking of dieting? …. NutriSystem is the only way to go.  Dan Marino and BobLee would not steer you wrong.

The City of Hope people were very nice.  Their check cleared the bank.  Andy and Matt and I had a fine morning amid the lofty pines of Pinehurst … and I met the CEO of Sharpie.  Who knew there was such a guy?


  NEWS FLASH! …. In a surprise announcement, NBA Commissioner David Stern has named all-time leading coaching vagabond Suitcase Larry “The Weeper” Brown as Official Ex-Coach of Every Team in the league.  Larry can now show up anywhere at any time and say “it wasn’t my fault …. I just love to teach”.  The Albany Patroons of the CBA will have a Larry Brown cry-athon with one lucky fan winning a copy of Larry’s coaching resume and a wheelbarrow to carry it home in.


    How many of you recognize the name Benjamin Martin?  …. The character played by Mel Gibson in his movie The Patriot.  It might surprise you to know I often feel the angst that Mel’s character dealt with in the movie.

Martin just wanted to be left alone to raise his family, farm his land, and be a contributing member to his community …. a life devoid of the political turmoil of his times …. the final year or so of the American Revolution as it was played out in South Carolina.  Alas, it was not to be and Ben found himself smack dab in the middle of it.

A cinematic aside …. The quite evil British Dragoon Colonel Tavington played by Jason Issacs … Issacs also played Lucius Malfoy in Harry Potter …. Also a very bad fellow.  Being a cinematic villain …. Shades of Bruce Dern and Christopher Lee.

I often come across as the reincarnation of Thomas Paine channeled thru H.L. Mencken but truly I wish it did not have to be so.  Dealing with society’s warts and the malevolent toads that cause those warts (and/or host The View) is not my idea of a pleasant day.  Just leave me alone with Mizzus, Kid, Annabelle The Cat and a bottomless fount of “Treehouse” and “Pier Fishing” columns and I promise not to double park or let my front lawn get scraggly. …. But, alas, like Benjamin Martin discovered …. That’s not the way it works.

If I just write about pier fishing and treehouses …. One Sunday we’re going to go over to our mini-mega church to hear Pastor Leon preach The Word and there will be a padlock on the door.  One day I’ll turn on my AM radio and just get static because the transmitters were shutdown.  We’ll go to our favorite stores and the shelves will be empty because corporate America has been handcuffed with so many regulations as to make commerce impossible. …. And one day “they” will break down my front door and take me and my family away because we don’t agree with “them”.

Now, I could sit back and “bet” that that won’t happen in my increasingly decreasing remaining life span … but it likely will in Kid’s.  My dad and his buddies stormed the beaches at Normandy to protect the America they cherished.  I still cherish that version of America with a few allowances made for normal socio-cultural evolution.  I think it’s worth fighting for.  My M-1 or flintlock musket is this little ol’ website and its availability to all who chance by.  Benjamin Martin used his tomahawk to make his point … I have naught by my mind and my keyboard.

As the national dialog heats up in the months to come (you ain’t seen NUTHIN’ yet) … I wish we could just discuss the weather and whether or not Coach K has cloven hooves but that won’t make the danger go away.  There will always be “pier fishing” and “tree house building” going on here but I will not “sit on my back porch and whittle” …. allowing others to protect my country and my family’s freedom without doing my part.


    Raise your hand if you thought casting for The Nifong Chronicles – The Movie was completed.  Come on, be honest.  Most of you figured you now knew all the characters …. “Crash”, Precious, Kim The Embezzler, Crazy Cuzzin Jackie, Spineless Richard, Three Rich White Boys, Dr Cathy’s gang,  Joe, Wade and “the lawyers” …. and assorted pot-bangers and race-war mongers masquerading as journalists.  WELL … we got to add one new humdinger to the final credits.

   Meet Solomon Burnette …. A senior at North Carolina Central.  Solomon had a most revealing op/ed column in the NCCU campus newspaper on April 18.  It was NOT a “name your favorite Destiny’s Child” column.

   For all you “white folks” that live in gated communities and rely on media-generated images to educate yourselves about “urban dudes” then this bad boy is your nightmare in ebony flesh.

This modern day Mad Mahatma is calling for “retributive correction” for the “injustices” against poor little Crystal (The PsycHo) by “white justice”.  Yes, indeed we  got ourselves a for-real “burn baby burn Bad Boy”.  Brutha Burnette is calling for physical measures.

NCCU Chancellor James Ammons has been quick to try and neutralize this quite angry fellow.  Apparently yelling “FIRE” in a crowded theater is OK if one says “its just freedom of speech”.  Regardless of how Ammons handles this Eldridge Cleaver Wannabee, Ammons is still the most competent university head guy in Derm.  He trumps that Ivy League guy at the Gothic Rockpile many times over.

   I bet you think this yahoo is just some pseudo-intellectual Urkel who wants to be Malik Shabazz when he grows up.  Well …. Not quite.

Solomon Burnette …. SURPRISE SURPRISE …. Has a “rap sheet” down to the local gray bar Hilton longer than Brendan Wright’s wingspan …. Indeed …. This urban Derm Dennis The Menace is in the Derm Hoosgaw’s Frequent Guest Program with all sorts of notations in his file.  It starts with Armed Robbery, then gets kinda nasty.  ….. gotta wonder how Sportin’ Life Saunders will choose to describe this fine example of Derm’s Future Civic Leaders. …… by the way …. What ever happened to  that “do-rag wearin lusty party boy” from last month?  Wonder if Soloman and “Do-rag Guy: belong to the same gang (oops, my bad, that should be “civic fraternal organization”)


 A Tough One …. 

In The Patriot, Ben Martin sends his family to a safe hiding place 

….. the future site of what famous resort community?


    Gordon Jump ended his career as “The Maytag Repair Man”.

    A BobLee Huzza to N&O columnist Ruth Sheehan.  In her column this past Monday she offered a “no buts” apology for her unintended transgression in the early days of The Nifong Chronicles. …… Counting Ruth’s that brings the total of N&O apologies to …. well, lets see here …. ummmm …. ONE …….  A sidebar to Ruth’s apology …. She was immediately attacked by the disgusting creepy crawlie element that lurks in our right-wing basement (and in the left-wing basement too!).   Please folks, if you feel compelled to express your disapproval of some left-wing journalist …. Do so in a manner that does not embarrass the rest of us.  Anonymous e-threats of bodily harm really don’t make this world a more civil place.  Trust me …. I get my share.

   Great N&O update …. Prince Albert asked me, after that last column, “do you have many N&O people that read your columns?”  My reply …. “not as many as I did before I wrote this last column.”  yee haa. 

   South Carolina Athletics Director Eric Hyman is being besieged by (TAA DA!) the goggle-eyed spittle spewing loonies of GamecockNation.  Indeed, the Garnet&Black howler monkeys are constructing catapults and siege machines to oust the now-maligned former UNC FBer and former NCSU sports admin (during the dreaded Reign of Todd !!!).  Eric’s high crime = Trying to run the athletics dept as a business.  He inherited a $2.5 million debt and was told to “fix it”.     That, alas, involves concepts alien to the howler monkey mindset …. the current howler monkey strategy vs Eric is the well-known one of post a lot of out-and-out lies and post them often”.  Wonder where they learned that one ???

   Ergo … here come the insults, threats and generally despicable typical message board assaults including the predictable conspiracy theories linked to Eric’s UNC heritage.  Geeee, where have I heard that one before?  Eric is a pro and can “take it” …. Just a shame he has to.

   In related AD News …. NCSU AD Lee Fowler has been given a contract extension thru 2013.  Little Wuffs now in the 6th grade will have the chance to blame “Jed” for …. just about anything … when they enter NCSU. ….. over in Chapel Hill, Dickie had a grilled cheese sandwich for lunch. 

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