Wade on Birmingham

Archive for March, 2010

UAB, Troy headed for NIT

Monday, March 15th, 2010

basketballThe Blazers have pulled off the seemingly impossible: They’re the only men’s college basketball team from Alabama playing in a post-season tournament.

Update: As Jeff pointed out in the comments, Troy is also headed to the NIT, playing Ole Miss in Oxford at 7 p.m. Wednesday. Our thanks to him.

In 2009, Alabama State lost in the NCAA tournament play-in game. This year, zero teams from the state are in the Big Dance. The lone bright spots are Troy and UAB in the National Invitational Tournament. UAB plays at home against Coastal Carolina 7 p.m. Tuesday. Tickets are $15. No broadcast information is available.

The 2009 NIT tourney invited UAB and Auburn, which fired coach Jeff Lebo after 6 years and a 96-93 record.

The NCAA women’s tournament teams will be announced tonight.

Update: No state women’s teams are headed to the NCAA tournament. Instead, Ole Miss will play at Samford in the first round Thursday in the NIT’s first 64-team tourney.

Also: “State of Alabama tosses another NCAA air ball.”

down the looking glass

Monday, March 15th, 2010

More movies will use
3D as gimmick, but need
2D beforehand.

• • •

Read more haiku.

Wade’s 101: Haiku retrospective 16

Friday, March 12th, 2010

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  1. santa has severe type 2 diabetes
    Seriously, what
    did you expect from such a
    diet of cookies?
  2. parade of cubicles
    The stapler does not
    suffer from boredom. It moves
    often cube to cube.
  3. a gentle drift
    Eventually,
    the cold gave way to flurries
    descending darkly.
  4. the tradition
    Round up the fans to
    watch the game, drink beer, yell at
    the refs, root root root.
  5. a pancake kind of morning
    The house needs warmth. It’s
    a pancake kind of morning.
    Heat up the syrup.
  6. you better watch out
    Santa has turned on
    spyware and night vision to
    decide naughty, nice.
  7. predictions for the next decade
    Flying cars, yoga
    weddings, telepathic phones,
    wars without borders.
  8. a campaign without end
    The race starts anew.
    Someone will someday lead this
    town, but not this year.
  9. sent from above
    A squirrel has the
    run of the attic, keeping
    humans up at night.
  10. adventures at the online mall
    Hard to flirt with the
    virtual checkout girl when
    cart’s filled with doilies.
  11. no wonder
    Piling on the years
    slowly drains the wonder from
    a once bright outlook.
  12. post-modern sleigh ride
    Solar-powered sleigh
    comes with DVD player,
    espresso machine.
  13. crimson pride
    In tough times, a band
    of football crazies pins their
    hopes on Bama’s boys.
  14. a different kind of fun
    It’s a different kind
    of fun when the light goes on
    and teaching connects.
  15. fight on
    No one knows your pain
    but you. And still, you soldier
    on because you must.
  16. that was the decade that was
    War on Terror, Web
    2.0, reality
    TV, red/blue states.
  17. trickles and pours
    Drips and deluges,
    showers and sprinkles, water
    torture never ends.
  18. shopping in the closet
    Zip disks, notebooks, pens,
    souvenir cups, CDs, a
    melted candy cane.
  19. creature feature
    The day you forget
    makeup is the day you see
    friends at the movies.
  20. the case for steroids
    Man was meant to hit
    lots of home runs and bench press
    700 pounds.
  21. short days, long days
    Winter arrives on
    time, with the shortest days filled
    with the longest lists.
  22. the airing of grievances
    Mon ami, what a
    disappointment you’ve been. And
    how dreadful your frown.
  23. the good in all
    If for one day the
    world’s people can become good,
    let it never end.
  24. repeat the sounding joy
    The Lord is come! Let
    Earth receive her king. And hea-
    ven and nature sing
    .
  25. christmas was here
    Pine needles, stray bow,
    wrapping shards, gift receipts, tubs
    of leftovers, peace.
  26. roar in the back yard
    Metal monster sends
    leaves flying into messy
    piles with much thunder.
  27. tomorrow always dies
    The promise of a
    new 24 hours wears
    thin in just a day.
  28. the busiest street in town
    The busiest street
    in town sees a car or two,
    maybe a lost dog.
  29. till the very end
    The fireworks and
    black-eyed peas can’t wait for the
    calendar to change.
  30. a bad breakup
    I looked upon the
    passing year and decade with
    a hint of contempt.
  31. and now your moment of ’10
    Once bit10, 10der
    caress brings a sweet 10sion
    never forgot10.
  32. blades of gory
    The rink seems even
    bumpier when hugged at high
    speed along the ice.
  33. oh, frostbite
    Bitter cold punches
    warm-blooded Southerners right
    below Bible Belt.
  34. flaky threats
    They are coming, and
    nothing you do can stop the
    cruel snowy stampede.
  35. i wish it were colder
    Today, I wish it
    were colder. I can still feel
    my fourth toe and neck.
  36. supermarket sweep
    Blizzard forecast sends
    shoppers on rampage for the
    essentials: bread, milk.
  37. game prep
    Pace nervously, make
    comfort food, wear team colors,
    find a way to win.
  38. writ her name in crimson flame
    Fight on, men! Remem-
    ber the Rose Bowl, we’ll win then.
    Dixie’s football pride.
  39. the cupcake factory
    The little people
    frost their little cakes on a
    little wooden bench.
  40. the case of the missing afternoon
    It is enough to
    share the couch and watch TV
    mysteries for warmth.
  41. but it’s a dry cold
    Shivers and shakes, ice
    and chills. Winter has gone South
    for the, um, winter.
  42. after carson, before armageddon
    The Late Night Wars of
    ’10 began with Leno bomb
    planted in prime time.
  43. t-shirts unlimited
    Each event, group, run,
    slogan has been captured with
    another T-shirt.
  44. promise unfulfilled
    The people will be
    burned only so many times
    until they give up hope.
  45. help haiti
    Now is the time for
    the world to lend a hand to
    our Haitian neighbors
    .
  46. return of the bug
    Even after flu
    vaccine, cootie shot, body
    succumbs to sickness.
  47. habits
    Let’s do the same thing
    a thousand times because it
    takes little effort.
  48. a matter of service
    Do not expect good
    service until you give good
    service unprompted.
  49. rebooting birmingham again
    The reset button
    is faded and worn, having
    been used quite a bit.
  50. stains of history
    Swiftly the currents
    of events rush by, little
    understood for now.
  51. the 39th parallel
    Cross this border to
    see beyond the mists of youth.
    Gaze into more life.
  52. a dare-to-be-great situation
    Buy, sell or process?
    As long as you get paid a
    princely, tidy sum.
  53. no punching at the dinner table
    As satisfying
    as it could be, please refrain
    from feast fisticuffs.
  54. a reporter’s secret
    He never goes home,
    never stops calling, writes and
    rewrites with gusto.
  55. the road to success
    The road to success
    looks nothing like a highway.
    Yet the path is worn.
  56. a rush ahead to the blood
    Smell that? It’s the scent
    of a good story waiting
    to be told to all.
  57. oh, stop
    “Did you hear about
    Fred?” “Fred rules!” “What’s this I hear
    about Fred?” “Get him!”
  58. stronger than she looks
    I can tell her just
    about anything. She won’t
    buckle or break down.
  59. negotiations
    Not so much about
    the plans. Just about the way
    we woo each other.
  60. anywhere there’s cake
    Spongy rich inside
    with a healthy heaping of
    frosting. Milk? Gravy.
  61. the vapors
    Time to bring back the
    vapors, fainting spells and the
    phrase, “I do declare.”
  62. fate accompli
    We are headed to
    the cliff, unable to veer
    away or slow down.
  63. before there was cake
    Powdered sugar leaves
    a tell-tale trail along the
    kitchen countertop.
  64. under the blue tarp
    The bones rot away
    with each pissy rain cloud, hurt
    by frail shingled skin.
  65. keep digging that grave
    Ignorance becomes
    quicksand. Stubbornness becomes
    policy. No hope.
  66. the rehearsal
    It’s somewhat like a
    real performance, minus the
    eyes and time limit.
  67. made with real hummingbirds
    Every last crumb must
    be digested, lest the bak-
    er be offended.
  68. who dat?
    Who dat? Who dat? Who
    dat say dey gonna write dis
    verse? Who dat? Who dat?
  69. notepads and netbooks
    The students scribble
    rapidly on paper and
    pixels. Learn later.
  70. infinite wandering
    Imagination
    is a wonderful thing, till
    you need to focus.
  71. cookies for breakfast
    Taboo treats at the
    breakfast table not as nice
    as the company.
  72. mostly covered
    Mild winter on pause
    as celestial dandruff
    smothers the Deep South.
  73. the olympics of me
    Easy gold medal
    for me in spilling food on
    shirt, typos, napping.
  74. no tricks
    Infant child can’t talk,
    crawl, play trumpet, make dinner,
    write essays, not drool.
  75. cupid’s lament
    Even with many
    arrows on target, mortals
    desire comfort.
  76. a civilization of bureaucracy
    Mayans built temples.
    Egyptians built pyramids.
    We stack paperwork.
  77. the winter equation in dixie
    Mostly mild, with a
    chance of snow and ice, and some
    occasional warmth.
  78. insecurity risk
    The gray light of the
    kitchen reinforces a
    sense of aloneness.
  79. resolutions on, resolutions off
    The gyms, deserted.
    The credit cards, maxed way out.
    Resolved, not hardly.
  80. in the planning stages
    Clean out the closet,
    plan for vacation, smoke less,
    world domination.
  81. olympic dreams: brush with glory
    The disk sails down the
    rink, aimed with bristled intent
    at icy bull’s eye.
  82. olympic dreams: cavalcade on ice
    Hicks, clowns and native
    characters strap on skates to
    wow judges and fans.
  83. olympic dreams: ski, shoot, ski
    With rifles at the
    ready, skiers charge across
    snowy countryside.
  84. olympic dreams: good and bumpy
    Mogul minefield stands
    between agile skiers and
    medals podium.
  85. olympic dreams: i got my half-pipe
    Baggy gymnasts of
    the snowboards twist round and round,
    hanging in mid-air.
  86. olympic dreams: blue borders
    Exposed veins pulse with
    energy from the mountain
    as ants slide between.
  87. olympic dreams: down the frozen colon
    The track has a rep.
    The athletes have a mission:
    Steer straight, fast and true.
  88. olympic dreams: pucks unlimited
    Faceoff. Deke, shot, block.
    Icing, pass … fight! Penalty.
    Shot, shot, score! Horn! Roar!
  89. olympic dreams: vancouver mush
    A host city with
    too much warmth can’t keep much snow
    on the mighty slopes.
  90. at the holi table
    To enjoy the feast,
    you must prove your faith and wear
    a colorful face.
  91. a question of worth
    The lone monk used an
    abacus to calculate
    his worth before God.
  92. almost a blizzard
    When it snows three times
    in a season in the South.
    invest in long johns.
  93. peace be unto you
    Conflict breeds options.
    Fight back. Tuck tail. Induce guilt.
    Give in. Or just talk.
  94. the sin of defiance
    Be not sorry, proud
    jester, for your eternal
    reward is coming.
  95. step step glide
    They dance before a
    half-empty room, half-dressed, full
    of joie de vivre.
  96. heavier than previously thought
    The gold statue, an
    indicator not of true
    merit, but good hype.
  97. minimum flow
    The couch can only
    go so many ways in a
    room before it cries.
  98. the run
    Dawn comes, and out the
    door. Legs begin to churn back
    and forth down the street.
  99. adventure is out there
    Beyond the confines
    of daily routine is a
    world of grand mischief.
  100. need-to-know basis
    Lifelong learning starts
    with observing, then thorough
    questioning. Truth comes.
  101. under foot
    Culinary plans
    can falter when four-legged
    friend strolls through kitchen.

• • •

Read more Wade’s 101.

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J.T. on ‘Survivor’: Knee-to-know basis

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

‘Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains,’ episode 5 recap

survivor.wadeonbirmingham.com

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Video: Immunity challenge

Wade on Birmingham - Survivor Heroes vs. VillainsTo be a “Survivor” champ takes heart, guts, brains and nerve. But does it take knees?

One contestant goes down during the reward challenge. Meanwhile, Mobile’s James “J.T.” Thomas Jr. finds himself in the doghouse among the Heroes, but not for long.

Who found an idol? Who had the pivotal vote? And who turned down free chocolate? Find out, after the jump …

(more…)

need-to-know basis

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

Lifelong learning starts
with observing, then thorough
questioning. Truth comes.

• • •

Read more haiku.

J.T. on ‘Survivor’: Small flips and big flops

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

‘Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains,’ episode 5 preview

survivor.wadeonbirmingham.com

Video: Preview for tonight’s episode.
Russell steps up his game; James goes lame?

Wade on Birmingham - Survivor Heroes vs. VillainsThe stats after four episodes: one hidden immunity idol found, one played, one still missing and one blindside.

But it looks like the Heroes are back to their losing ways on “Survivor.”

Can James “J.T.” Thomas Jr. of Mobile explain his flip-flop allegiance from last week? Is his teammate James Clement going down after a challenge injury? What won’t Villain Russell Hantz do to stay on top?

A program note: Because of NCAA men’s basketball tournament coverage, the next episode will air Wednesday, March 24.

Plus, a bonus scene from last week’s episode.

Video: J.T. before last week’s Tribal Council.

Episode 4 recaps:

“Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains ” airs at 7 p.m. Thursdays on CBS 42. Full recap tonight following the show.

• • •

Back up for grabs … more “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains” at survivor.wadeonbirmingham.com.

adventure is out there

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

Beyond the confines
of daily routine is a
world of grand mischief.

• • •

Read more haiku.

the run

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

Dawn comes, and out the
door. Legs begin to churn back
and forth down the street.

• • •

Read more haiku.

minimum flow

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

The couch can only
go so many ways in a
room before it cries.

• • •

Read more haiku.

heavier than previously thought

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

The gold statue, an
indicator not of true
merit, but good hype.

• • •

Read more haiku.

step step glide

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

They dance before a
half-empty room, half-dressed, full
of joie de vivre.

• • •

Read more haiku.

the sin of defiance

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

Be not sorry, proud
jester, for your eternal
reward is coming.

• • •

Read more haiku.

BREAKING: Former Birmingham mayor Larry Langford sentenced to 15 years in prison

Friday, March 5th, 2010

Birmingham Alabama mayor Larry Langford

Larry Langford will spend the next 15 years in prison.

Wade on Birmingham - The trial of Larry LangfordThe former Birmingham mayor was convicted in October on 60 counts of bribery, conspiracy, fraud and money laundering. U.S. District Judge Scott Coogler handed down the sentence this morning in Tuscaloosa. Langford owes $120,000 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service and $242,000 in forfeiture.

At the sentencing, Langford told Coogler, “I am sorry all of this has occurred.”

He also faces 3 years supervised release after his prison term. Langford had faced up to 30 years possible sentence. He would be eligible for early release after approximately 12 years and 9 months in prison.

Langford is ordered to report for prison on noon April 5. Until then, he will wear an electronic ankle bracelet, report twice a week to a probation officer and must remain within Jefferson County. Langford plans to file an appeal.

Langford, elected in 2007, entered office under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission for his role in providing bond business during his service on the Jefferson County Commission.

Also convicted in the scheme were Langford’s friends Bill Blount and Al LaPierre, who were sentenced to 52 months and 48 months in prison last week.

Carole Smitherman, president of the city council, became interim mayor, until succeeded by new council president Roderick Royal in November. William Bell became mayor in January following a special election and runoff.

Updates to follow.

• • •

Complete coverage: The trial of Larry Langford from Wade on Birmingham.

Illustration by Herman Henderson

J.T. on ‘Survivor’: Splitsville

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

‘Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains,’ episode 4 recap

survivor.wadeonbirmingham.com

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Wade on Birmingham - Survivor Heroes vs. VillainsMixed blessings abound. For example, having the immunity idol can give a player power, but it can also make him a target. And being the swing vote can let a player choose her destiny, but it will almost certainly turn allies into enemies.

For one tribe, it was a bounty of mixed blessings on “Survivor: Heroes vs. Villains.”

Meanwhile, Mobile’s James “J.T.” Thomas Jr. figures out his own strategy of who to trust and who to keep in check.

Who cried whiny tears? Who went hunting for a hidden immunity idol? And who played whom? Find out, after the jump  …

(more…)

peace be unto you

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

Conflict breeds options.
Fight back. Tuck tail. Induce guilt.
Give in. Or just talk.

• • •

Read more haiku.