The Atlanta Constitution from Atlanta, Georgia on July 30, 2004 · C2
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The Atlanta Constitution from Atlanta, Georgia · C2

Atlanta, Georgia
Issue Date:
Friday, July 30, 2004
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MAIN0730-A-C M@2 -Composite Proof 7/29/04 1:41 0:00 F Do it yourself or do it with help? Fridays H ARDWOOD FLOORING F R O M 99 ¢ SQ. FT. BAMBOO 25 yr. Warranty FROM $ 1 99 SQ. FT. L UMBER L IQUIDATORS 1530 ROCKBRIDGE ROAD, CONYERS, GA 770-860-0606 You may qualify for Diabetic Shoes at little or no cost, FREE Sample of Diabetic Cream and Foot Analysis with this ad. 770-879-1234 Call For Nearest Location ATTENTION DIABETICS!!! And Much More! LOEHMANN’S PLAZA LOEHMANN’S PLAZA 2480 Braircliff Rd. 2480 Braircliff Rd. 404-679-9922 404-679-9922 220 JOHNSON FERRY RD. 220 JOHNSON FERRY RD. Across from Target Across from Target (behind Wendy’s) (behind Wendy’s) 404-252-0710 404-252-0710 BRIARCLIFF VILLAGE BRIARCLIFF VILLAGE 2080 Henderson Mill Rd 2080 Henderson Mill Rd (Across From Northlake Mall) (Across From Northlake Mall) 770-493-4674 770-493-4674 FINAL CLEARANCE! FOOT PRINTS FOOT PRINTS  MON-FRI 10AM -8PM,  SAT 10AM-6PM,  SUN 12AM-6PM $ 9 99 a pair RMAIN0730OC2FMAIN0730OC2 4 Star 2C 2C RR RR *CNZ30OC002CY* *CNZ30OC002CY* *CNZ30OC002MA* *CNZ30OC002MA* *CNZ30OC002YE* *CNZ30OC002YE* *CNZ30OC002KB* *CNZ30OC002KB* BlueRedYellowBlack Blue RedYellowBlack C2 Friday, July 30, 2004 / The Atlanta Journal-Constitution 4 Q: It seems that early voting during the week before the recent primary election was very popular. This brings up a question: What is the reasoning behind the need for an “excuse” to vote an absentee ballot? Is that mandated by law? — Fredolyn Stitt, Lilburn A: As explained by Kara Sinkule of the secretary of state’s office, the Official Code of Georgia (21-2-380), enacted by the Georgia General Assembly, requires that voters who cast absentee ballots in Georgia provide one of six legally acceptable reasons for voting absentee: ➤ You will be absent from your precinct from 7 a.m. until 7 p.m. on election day. ➤ You are 75 or older. ➤ You have a physical disability that prevents you from voting in person, or you are a constant caregiver of a person with a disability. ➤ You are an election official. ➤ You are observing a religious holiday that prevents you from voting in person. ➤ You are required to remain on duty in your precinct for the protection of life, health or safety of the public. However, Georgia’s new advance voting period allows voters to cast an absentee ballot in person at the registrar’s office Monday through Friday of the week immediately preceding an election without having to provide a reason. They may do this simply as a matter of convenience. In the July 20 primary, more than 76,000 Georgians cast their ballots early using this new procedure, Sinkule said. Q: It was stated at the Democratic National Convention that if Sen. John Kerry is elected, his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, would be the second foreign-born first lady. Who was the first? — Mary-Ellen Ramsey, Tucson, Ariz. A: Louisa Catherine Adams (1775-1852), wife of President John Quincy Adams, was born in London. Q: A London newspaper reported that Prince Charles handed over his entire personal fortune to Princess Diana when their divorce was settled in 1996. An article about this mentioned that Charles draws the bulk of his income from the Duchy of Cornwall. What is that? — David Hackney, Gainesville A: The duchy, created in 1337 by Edward III for his son, Prince Edward, is one of the largest and oldest landed estates in Britain. Its total area is about 141,000 acres in 25 counties in England, with over half the estate in Dartmoor in Devon. It has about 250 “let farms” or small holdings, and the estate owns some residential properties, shops and offices, plus a portfolio of stocks and shares. Since the 14th century, the duchy’s main purpose has been to provide an income, independent of the monarch, for the heir apparent. That income covers the cost of the public and private life of the current duke, the Prince of Wales. Prince Charles became the 24th duke of Cornwall because he is the eldest son of Queen Elizabeth, who took the throne in 1952. When Charles was 21, in 1969, he became entitled to the full income of the duchy and took over its management. His income from investments and property was the equivalent of $37 million in 2003-04, his accounts published in June showed. About $28 million of that came from the Duchy of Cornwall. He doesn’t own the duchy’s assets, but receives the income it generates. Do you have a question about the news? Colin Bessonette will try to get an answer. Call 404-222-2002 or e-mail q& (include your name and city). Q&A Need to Vent? Call 404-222-8338; e-vent: Thank goodness bowling shoes, suspenders and a compass are on the tax-free item list for this weekend. Those are the last three things my kids needed to go back to school. Mike Luckovich: Come home before you get hurt! My golfing buddies and I have been competing against each other in peace for several years. Now, the games are all spoiled by our heated political debates. Thanks, President Bush. I’m glad I’m not the only one who thinks going back to school in early August is ridiculous. It is still summer! I hate to brag, but ever since I got pregnant all my vents get printed. If you don’t think God has a sense of humor, stand near the checkout line at Wal-Mart for an hour. It’s a dangerous world. I plan to pick my next president the same way I would pick my next brain surgeon. Amazing! The Democratic National Convention and “Much Ado About Nothing” playing simultaneously on TV. Irony at its best: Georgia Power gives us helpful hints on how to reduce our power bills as it doubles its rates during the summer. The city of Atlanta is looking for a “disaster recovery coordinator.” Which disaster will they focus on? The other countries of the world would like to thank the Philippines for showing that kidnapping pays. The U.S. economy is in a sad state when all the best jobs are in Iraq. I’ve been telling my wife that going to Hooters is a religious experience, and that Kennesaw Hooters Bible study proves it. Seen at local complex: a fire sprinkler service truck parked in a red no-parking fire zone next to a fire hydrant. Shouldn’t the driver know better? Watching the Democrats at their convention reminds me of a bunch of pirates gathering for mutual plunder and pillage and to split up the loot. I always refuse extra pepper to be ground on my food, because I assume the chef knows how to cook. Please explain to me why we have brought the “stinky flower” all the way from Sumatra to Atlanta when it smells like rotting flesh and no one can stand to be around it. They may not be making any more land, but they sure are making a lot more condos. Movie Rule No. 1: Don’t eat up all your popcorn before the feature starts. Bergergate: Whose rear end was Sandy covering when he stole those classified documents? It’s tax-free weekend, but I don’t have any money. Can I get a rain check? Deaths resulting from a driver watching a DVD should be grounds for a first- degree murder conviction. Finally, another Vent Thing! A Vent-A-Day 2005 calendar. Summer discount price (through Aug. 31): $8.95. Buy it online at or call toll-free 1-866-AJC- STAX. THE VENT Thankfully, the DeKalb Super Looper never stuck. That was the winner of a wacky contest sponsored by the Georgia Department of Transportation and WSB radio nearly a generation ago to coin a catchy handle for the then- amazing $86 million conglomeration of ramps linking I-285 and I-85 in DeKalb County. Later, it officially was named the Tom Moreland Interchange, in honor of the longtime DOT commissioner. But the name that endured — Spaghetti Junction — was dreamed up even before the interchange was finished, uttered first by a radio traffic reporter on the 19th floor of the old Presidential Hotel overlooking the junction. Dave Straub was reporting on an unusually bad traffic jam at the construction site when it popped into his head. “It’s looking more and more like an overturned bowl of spaghetti,” Straub said he recalls telling listeners in 1986 on one of 19 area radio stations then served by Metro Traffic Control. “In fact, I think we’ll start calling it Spaghetti Junction.” Many believe Spaghetti Junction was named by the late Keith Kalland, a font of such monickers, such as “the Alpharetta Autobahn” for Ga. 400. But Straub notes Kalland many times credited Straub on the air for coining the phrase. His account is confirmed by Jim Basile, traffic reporter for Channel 11, who, like Kalland, originally was hired by Straub more than 19 years ago. “It was like Dave said: From the air at night with all the red lights, it looked like a bowl of spaghetti,” said Basile. DOT badly wanted a suitable nickname because it despised Malfunction Junction, coined by WSB’s Captain Dave Foulk. At the ceremony to name it for Moreland, DOT Commissioner Hal Rives expressed officialdom’s sentiments. “If I ever hear the WSB Skycopter say Malfunction Junction again, we’re going to shoot it down,” Rives quipped. Retired DOT spokesman Jerry Stargel said officials were never happy about Spaghetti Junction, either. But Moreland, still active with his own engineering firm, isn’t the least bit miffed about how it all turned out. “Spaghetti Junction doesn’t bother me at all,” he said, later adding, “I just wish we’d put more lanes on it.” Straub said more than one of his stations objected to the nickname, saying their listeners had no idea what he was talking about. “A lot of people were adamantly opposed to me using it,” he said. “I kept holding my ground.” Within a month, pasta pavement was a permanent part of the public lexicon. The day DOT officially named the interchange, Straub and the Fox 97 morning disc jockeys, J.J. Jackson and Stacia Kelly, conducted their own christening ceremony — from aboard a Bell Jet Ranger helicopter. Straub claimed to sprinkle oregano and Parmesan and Romano cheeses onto the interchange, properly seasoning the completed dish. Straub, who now lives in Roswell and runs his own company, calls the famous nickname “my legacy,” something he values more than his broadcasting awards. “They’re just plaques on the wall,” he said. “Spaghetti Junction lives.” Joey Ledford’s Lane Ranger column appears Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. ‘Spaghetti Junction’ took getting used to JOEY LEDFORD JOEY LEDFORD LANE RANGER

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