The State of Georgia wants to use my photo for official business?

Georgia citizenship, good citizen, goodwill,

I was surprised to get a proclamation declaring me as an Outstanding Georgia Citizen and a Goodwill Ambassador

At first I thought they were calling about my state income tax…

Recently, I received a call asking if the Georgia Secretary of State, Brian Kemp, could use one of my photos for a public service campaign. The photo was one I took back in 2010 in downtown Lawrenceville, Georgia. I was able to catch both the American and Georgia flags on the flagpole on the Old Historic Courthouse Square as the wind was making them flap. “In God We Trust” showed up plainly on the shot.

I’m very honored that Mr. Kemp thought enough of my photo to use it on banners that will be displayed at official state functions around Georgia. His staff even made up some cards to hand out if anyone was interested in the photo or contacting me. All of them were a pleasure to deal with and I trust that their project will be a fruitful endeavor.

John

american flag, georgia flag, postcard, appreciation, p.r., public relations

The Georgia Secretary of State, Brian Kemp, and his staff made a nice card to hand out telling about my photo taken in Gwinnett County.

American and Georgia flags flapping in the breeze

American and Georgia flags flapping in the breeze

My photo was on display at the Georgia National Fair in Perry (on the right side).

My photo was on display at the Georgia National Fair in Perry (on the right side).

Chili’s baby-back ribs: oh, man they’re good…the fried shrimp (what I could find of them is not).

Half rack of Chili's Ribs

Half rack of Chili’s Ribs

For a restaurant that is not a barbeque specialist, Chili’s has some delicious ribs.  I should know since the last three times we’ve gotten take-out, I’ve ordered them.

You can get them on the $20 Dinner for Two Deal.  The official name is “Half Rack of Baby Back Ribs w/ Homestyle Fries (Choose New Honey-Chipotle, Original or Memphis Dry Rub).”  I got original sauce all three times and these rocked.  I added the Mashed Potatoes with Loaded Pepper Gravy (yes, every time) and they were very good too.

The wife got the Bacon Burger and enjoyed it. I took a bite and it was quite tasty.  The appetizer we chose was the Tostada Chips & Fire-Grilled Corn Guacamole.  It has a little kick and was so good that we ordered it every time too.  The only complaint was the chips were too thin to hold up the heavy dip.

Chili's Guacamole Dip

Chili’s Guacamole Dip

Chili's even has "to go" at The Avenue at Webb Gin

The service at the take-out was fine every time…smiles for the most part. They give you a heavy duty paper bag with plenty of napkins and utensils…and the food is packages neatly.

An no, I don’t work there or have any friends that do either.  On one of our recent trips to the same location I ordered the fried shrimp.  They may have taken it off the menu by now as I don’t see it as an option to order online.

There was no problem with the temperature but the shrimp were puny and were covered with too much batter. I’m guessing that it was about a 3:1 ratio of batter to shrimp in volume.  Anyway, it was quite a disappointing meal.
Nothing wrong with the service though.  Our waiter and server were both fans of one of my favorite bands, Led Zeppelin, as evidenced by the tattoos that they both wore.  In fact, one of the Roycrofters, a local jam band, was our waiter.  

Flowers at The Avenue at Webb Gin

If you go and walk around the outdoor mall where our Chili’s is you will probably like it.  The name is The Shoppes of Webb Gin.  The sidewalks allow plenty of room and it’s always neat and tidy around the parking lot. There’s a nice mix of stores with the Barnes and Noble bookseller being the closest merchant to the Chili’s.

I included a few photos of what The Shoppes look like.  If you go, I trust that you’ll have as much fun as I do.

John

The fountain at The Avenue at Webb Gin

Coldwater Creek's iconic wood storefront

Playful artwork adorns The Avenue at Webb Gin

John Robert Conley Atlanta restaurants

I still hate the smell of “Rich Corinthian Leather.”

“Boys, guess what I drove home.”

My Dad worked for car dealers while I was growing up in Statesboro, Georgia. He began at a Toyota dealership, then transferred to another marquee, Chevrolet.  Subsequent moves to the local Ford and Dodge dealers whet my appetite for automobiles.  Dad would often leave with the family car in the morning and show up for supper with another ride that was a “steal of a deal” or, in other words, the used car manager knew nobody else would buy it.

AMC Pacer, AMC Gremlin, & two big arse Pontiac Woodies

We ended up with a an AMC Pacer POS, an AMC Gremlin POS, and two Pontiac Station Wagons with big V-8 engines that some college professor traded in…Dad couldn’t resist the faux wood glued to the side slabs of the tanks and came home with both of them.  Those cars set him back about $150…yes, for…two…automobiles.  We parked them end-to-end in the back yard in Edgewood Acres.  Subsequently, Mr. Hubert Clark, our next door neighbor built a wooden fence for “privacy”…and to keep me and my brother out of his pool and from chasing his pretty daughter, Rosemary.

Keg Parties next door in Edgewood Acres 

Mr. Bob Worthington, our other neighbor, took the eyesores in stride. He just invited Father Lucree and some of the (From The Land of Black Socks and Sandals) Catholic Brigade in Edgewood Acres for a keg party and 27 successive renditions of “Michael Row the Boat Ashore” on Saturday night after Mass.

Of course, I think Mr. Bob enjoyed sticking it to Dad knowing that the soft acoustic guitar and those sweet harmonies floating in through the screened-in windows were keeping the owner of Edgewood’s biggest fleet of used (and neglected) automobiles from enjoying a good night’s sleep.  After all, my Baptist preacher Dad had to be ready to throw some brimstone in the fire on Sunday morning.  And, after a bad night’s sleep, he had no problem throwing more wood on that smoldering pile.

“..take a ride, ride, ride, ride on Heavy Metal…(and fiberglass)”

One of our neighbors, Mr. Kenny Stone, was a newly minted lawyer from the University of Georgia.  As a reward for passing the bar, he got married and bought a Corvette…a ’78 or ’79.  He’s a friendly guy and babied that black beauty.  Like every one of my first kisses with a neighborhood honey, I plainly remember that I only managed to snag a ride in that C3 once…the first time I had ever graced the seat of a Vette.  Sweet; it smelled good…had red leather and, man, were we low to the ground!  I didn’t mind being bitten by the Mako Shark-inspired design and I’ve wanted a 1980-1982 ever since.

Corvette C3 from Maxie Price Corvette World on the showroom floor

“Volare'” and…

The Vette sure did beat the Volare’ (we styled around the Metro ‘Boro in a burnt orange one that smelled like Lee Iacocca had set off a Valvoline-induced smoke bomb from under the hood)…

the F-U-R-Y

and the Plymouth “Hell Hath No” Fury for style.  One time, Dad “accidentally” backed the Fury into my Mama’s car twice…within ten seconds apart.  He didn’t drink at all and I can only guess that he was going to test-drive another Chrysler laden with “Rich Corinthian Leather” aka Pitted Vinyl with Vaseline smeared on it.
Enjoy the Plymouth Fury commercial with Arthur Godfrey and then relive the olfactory paradise that drove women wild in the Cordoba.  Just deliver those sweet nothings to your lady with that smooth Ricardo Montalban’ accent and…steamy windows here we come!

1967 Mercury Cougar and 1967 Ford Mustangs…ones that got away

I still have an affinity for vehicles and yeah, we had a bunch of four doors that fit all of us since we were a very close family. The Vette’s were a totally impractical choice for our ride but we did have a dark burgundy ’67 Ford Mustang and a metallic green ’67 Mercury Cougar whose only blemish was a front seat that had a few small cracks.  A little old lady really did have it and it was gorgeous to be twenty years old.  Dad still regrets selling it.

Here’s a commercial for the ’67 Cougar…Motor Trend’s Car of the Year. It’s got the big cat (a cougar, I guess) that growls. I always liked those ads.

Lincoln Mercury sponsored “THE FBI” with Efrem Zimbalist, Jr. and you have to admit the intros were good.

And for those of you who bothered to read this far, here’s a commercial for a Mercury Cougar with Farrah Fawcett Majors:

The Beaver House in Statesboro…go hungry; you won’t be disappointed.

"Bob Conley", "Linda Conley", "Mark Conley", "John Conley", "Beaver House", Statesboro John Conley, Linda Conley, Mark Conley, and Bob Conley at The Beaver House in Statesboro, Georgia

Man, was I stuffed and my bro even ate more than I did. How many times has that been said at The Beaver House over the years?

Yesterday, I made a quick run down to Statesboro to pick up a brand new order of notebooks from Randy Lewis at Lewis Color. This is embarrassing but I got lost leaving Waynesboro. Instead of taking 25 going south to Millen, I took another turn off the bypass at Waynesboro and after a couple of more turns ended up in Sardis. My, navigation system (aka my wife) was on the phone with me while she checked out Google Maps online back at the ranch. Sardis does have police so don’t think you can bust it through there.

The family finally sat down to lunch (here’s the menu) at The Beaver House by about 1:30 p.m. The crowd had thinned out and we had a friendly college girl wait on us. After getting some sweet tea in a real glass, here comes the homemade biscuits, the mashed potatos (and gravy…chicken or steak…I don’t know), green beans, macaroni and cheese, butter beans, and some country fried steak and fried chicken that will give your Mama’s a run for the money, honey.

Mrs. Sue and Clay are cookin’ up this grub everyday. Make sure you’re hungry.

Beaver House Restaurant on Urbanspoon

John Robert Conley Atlanta restaurants

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