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Paintball, crossing signals and debate - a potpourri column
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    This week is a bit of potpourri in the column category. I just had to get each of these little nuggets off my chest.
    War is a young man’s game.
    I know this may be a bit of a stretch, but we just finished filming a “Phil and Jake” segment for the Friday Vodcast of Studio Statesboro. If you haven’t seen it yet you can get there from of the Statesboro Herald site or at studiostatesboro.com.
    During the segment, Jake and I, along with our producer Matt and Connect Statesboro’s Courtney and Ben, took on the Prep Sports Blitz team (Herald local sports Vodcast) out at Dynamite Paintball across from Mill Creek.
    Yep, paintball.
    Now, I know I only played paintball, I know it wasn’t really military equipment and I know the only danger I was going to face was getting hit by a paintball in the small of the back (feels like getting hit by a racquetball — hard), but my 30-something body took a bit of abuse. It must be hell in the field.
    Let me reiterate, I am not comparing paintball to real battle. All I’m saying is that if I’m feeling a little creaky after a little paintball romp, I can’t even imagine the wear and tear the Iraqi conflict must be having our young fighting men and women.
    I’m in no way happy with the way this war was started — let’s be clear — and we as a nation need to do everything in our power to make sure another pre-emptive war isn’t started by our government without Congressional approval. But, please, in your own way, support the troops. After all, they’re only doing what they’ve been ordered to do.
    Now I’d like to share a completely unrelated story.
    I was walking in the downtown area with my young son. Fortunately, he’s a pretty bright kid (what parent would say otherwise) and he’s had excellent teachers so far. As a result, he is good with his traffic signals — red means stop, green means go — you know the drill.
    However, when crossing the intersections in downtown Statesboro, the pedestrian signal shows a little walking man, lit with a white light, to indicate “walk” and a red hand to indicate “stop.” Here’s the problem: the warning signal is a flashing red hand.
    I simply cannot tell you how many times I’ve tried to explain that the flashing red hand means “hurry up” instead “stop in the middle of the turn lane.” From the middle of the turn lane.
    So I’d like to apologize to all the motorists at the last First Friday event who had to wait while a few extra moments to get through the intersection while I explained the intricate balance between color and flashing. And I’d also like to address the individual who designed the pedestrian signals downtown. Why DOT engineer? Why? Why do you do this to me?
    One other tangent. Thursday the Herald announced a debate for the U.S. House District 12 Democratic primary debate — between incumbent John Barrow and a challenger, State Senator Regina Thomas — at Ogeechee Technical College, June 2 at 7 p.m.
    In addition, we will be announcing a U.S. Senatorial Democratic primary debate to be held July 8 at 7 p.m. also at Ogeechee Tech.
    Interestingly, I sent out invitations to the Republican primary candidates for the U.S. House. However, I only received a response from one campaign and nothing from the other two. For those interested in hearing from the Republican side of the aisle, contact the candidates and request a debate in Statesboro.
    Along those same lines, we’re still missing one or two of the establishment candidates for the Democratic spot in the senate race.
    So I’m encouraging everyone not only to come out see what these candidates have to say on the issues, but also to contact them and encourage them to participate in what will likely be the only debates for these spots in the Bulloch and Statesboro area. The more citizens that show up to these kinds of events, the more likely future events will take place here.
    Phil Boyum would like to tell the Tailgate Tattler that he didn’t pilfer the “underdog” idea from his column. I guess great minds just think alike. Phil can be reached at (912) 489-9454 or by e-mail at pboyum@statesboroherald.com

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