Monday, September 21, 2015

Sunset from Birmingham's Ruffner Mountain

Thanks to those of you who came out to the Ruffner Mountain Wine and Cheese Sunset Hike this past Friday. We were a tad late for the sunset, but it was beautiful to watch the afterglow fade into night perched there above the city. For the record, it was not my fault that we did not have cups to drink the wine. 
But it was another lesson in the importance of bringing your own water bottle every time you hike. Thanks to the Ruffner staff for hosting us. 
Planning a family-friendly Sunday afternoon hike on Oct. 18. Be thinking about it. More details coming soon. Ruffner is a great spot.

Atticus unveiled

I just finished Go Set a Watchman, Harper Lee's new, old book (in the interest of full disclosure, I listened to the audiobook).

It's really a puzzling work. I had read Adam Gopnik's piece about the book in The New Yorker. It includes the following observation: "The story related is simple, and suspiciously self-referential—it’s difficult to credit that a first novel would so blithely assume so much familiarity with a cast of characters never before encountered."

I'd have to agree.

Another great accompaniment to the new book is a piece Jay Reeves wrote about Harper Lee's newspaper editor father: Writings of Harper Lee's dad reveal Atticus Finch's conflict.

There's something disturbing and yet liberating about this new take on a the revered fictional hero and the man that inspired his creation.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Ruffner Mountain Wine and Cheese Sunset Hike


 I have been going to Ruffner Mountain Nature Center and Preserve since I was in elementary school. And since I've been back in Birmingham as an adult, I've always wanted to go on one of Ruffner's Wine and Cheese sunset hikes. I'm finally getting to go this Friday, Sept. 18, 6 p.m.
Those of you who've been to Ruffner know it offers one of the best views of Jones Valley and the city. That view would be especially beautiful at sunset, but you'd normally be back at your car by then because you don't want to be in the woods in the dark with the gates closed.
But once a month in the fall, Ruffner takes a group out, provides wine and cheese, holds a little socializing, and guides them back by lantern. If you can make it this Friday, register with Ruffner.  They need a head count, and they do ask for a $20 donation to support the park and cover the costs.
I'll actually be leading the hike, and speaking briefly, and selling books to anyone who needs one.
Hope you can join us.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Tuxedo Junctions and other famous places -

Read this Wayne Flynt piece on the contributions of Alabamians to the jazz and the blues music Tuxedo Junctions and other famous places - ...