Choice cuts from Acadiana’s news media for Friday, Dec. 20, 2013:
UL QB Terrance Broadway
Bikers make merry Forget the gruff exterior, these leather-clad riders from the Lafayette Biker Coalition showed their softer sides and the spirit of the season in this report from the Acadiana Advocate about eight fifth graders surprised by the group this week with new bicycles.
Broadway fit for battle? With the Cajuns gearing up for their third consecutive run for a NOLA Bowl title on Saturday, this story from The Daily Advertiser tackles one big question still lingering on the minds of the team and fans: Will UL’s starting quarterback Terrance Broadway be ready for action so soon after undergoing surgery on his throwing arm?
Into the fire Here’s a story of holiday heroics from Vermilion Today about Nelson Rideaux, an Abbeville electrician who didn’t think twice before dashing into a flame-engulfed mobile home to save the owner’s dog.
Vroom Here’s an interesting story from The Daily Iberian about an RC speedway under construction at New Iberia’s City Park. Once complete, the dirt track — which has caught the attention of Lafayette’s Big Boy Toys & Hobbies and Hobby Town USA — will include jump ramps and spectator seating and be able to handle car speeds of up to 90 mph.
From Gangster to Crusader After spending 27 years in the Louisiana Penitentiary at Angola, Ashanti Witherspoon knows what bad decisions can come from smoking crack cocaine and living the life of a gangster, and as reported here by the Opelousas Daily World, he’s on a mission to share his story, stopping Thursday for a visit with students from the Opelousas Magnet Academy for Cultural Arts.
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JUL 29 Saints Quarterback Drew Brees, who clearly is no slouch at public relations, countered any worries about his age by commenting from training camp that he'd like to play another 10 years on Friday. For the next two days, he says, he was subjected to "random" drug tests, this post on the Picayune says. Really?
JUL 29 This story in the Washington Post says Louisiana is in the top five of dog-loving states. According to this post, we have 1.27 dogs for every cat. Unfortunately, a whole lot of them are used for fighting or end up in shelters - left there by their owners. So maybe WaPo needs to reconsider that premise, because ownership doesn't necessarily equate with love.
JUL 29 Here's yet another "lady left her kids in a hot car" story, but this one is a little more ridiculous than most. KPLC reports that this lady (a Princess, no less!) Left her little kids unattended in a parking lot while she went to her boyfriend's car so she could provide him with some oral support. Hey, she left the windows down!
JUL 29 Environmental activist Wilma Subra made the Los Angeles Times this week, the star of this piece by Julie Cart in the "Great Reads" section. One interesting thing is the reference to Wilma as a "diminutive grandmother." Only someone who doesn't know her could possibly refer to her as "diminutive"!
JUL 29 Remember that "execution" in Arizona last week, the one where it took the inmate two gasping hours to die? Arizona uses the same drugs to kill its citizens as we do, this post on The Lens tells us. But hey, nothing to worry about, because state officials are "reviewing the protocol." OK!
JUL 29 Somebody over at LaPolitics is a big fan of the infographic! Here's another one, this time looking at the income of former governor, former reality TV star, and current Congressional candidate Edwin W. Edwards.
JUL 29 Blogger Crazy Crawfish got a tip that the state Department of Education was promoting a lot of people, and so he did some digging. Instead of asking a question to which he knew he would receive no answer, he just asked for payroll records. And, he found some pretty interesting stuff there.
JUL 29 Blogger Ian McGibboney is writing about the NRA in this post, and the absurdity of requiring people to follow one group's narrow philosophies. The NRA currently is floating the idea that children be required to demonstrate firearm proficiency in order to be promoted in school, and some other kinda nutty stuff. (Really?) Spoiler alert: Ian's not a fan.
JUL 27 Here's the first of four pieces from Minnesota Public Radio about the horrible legacy of Gilbert Gauthe, the pedophile who also was a priest and used his position to obtain victims. The story gets into the most shameful aspect of that time - the protection Gauthe received from the leaders of the church. This four-piece story promises to be more comprehensive than anything we've seen, because it is looking back from so far. Some of the information here has only been released recently.
JUL 27 The news gets worse in the case of the 11th hour bill that added a bunch of money to the retirement income of State Police Commander Mike Edmonson. Blogger CB Forgotston says here that the annual increase was not $30K, it was more like $55K. Also, it was Jindal buddy Neil Riser who tacked the action onto another bill - something he didn't feel compelled to tell us until now. But here's the best part - Edmonson turned down the money on Friday.
JUL 27 When you're telling people they have lost their jobs, you have to be careful about how you do it. When more layoffs were announced last week to the employees of the Office of Group Benefits, apparently that wasn't handled well, blogger Tom Aswell argues in this post. He's also got some info on who gets to stay - and how much they make. (Spoiler alert: It's a lot.)
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