Category Archives: The South

Last Shots

This is a personal essay I wrote for a magazine a few years ago. When my grandmother died yesterday, I came back and revised it some. In memoriam: Caroline Yundt Bethea ** Last Shots: When and where will yours occur? Considering a family’s final shots. My uncle retired from tennis when he was twelve, having [...]

Donald Young and the Parking Meter

It’s good to be Young again (#hopefully) “Show me some love!” shouts Donald Young. The twenty-two-year-old is returning serves at Georgia Tech’s Bill Moore Indoor Tennis Center, off 10th Street, in late October, and he just hit a forehand into the tape. “Again,” says Mike Sell. The United States Tennis Association’s national coach is standing [...]

Billy Redden, the Banjo Boy from Deliverance, Speaks

My oral history of the filming of Deliverance is coming out in the September issue of Atlanta magazine. In the process of reporting it, I spoke with Burt Reynolds (hirsute star), John Boorman (short-fused English director), and Billy Redden. Redden played Lonnie, the somewhat deranged looking banjo savant. Turns out, he doesn’t know how to [...]

From John Rocker’s Junk Folder: “you gutless pukes.”

A few days ago, I received a well-written email from John Rocker. It wasn’t the first—I’d gotten at least twenty over the previous two months, some of them more than 1,500 words long—but this one was forwarded from his long-suffering publicist, Debi Curzio. I’d recently written an article about Rocker for Atlanta magazine’s 50th anniversary [...]

This Just In: James Beard Award Finalist

Atlanta magazine’s July 2010 barbecue cover package, edited by Bill Addison, was nominated for a James Beard award in the Food Culture/Travel category. It included two pieces by me, one of which is below. I recommend reading it outside, beside a flame and a hunk of seasoned meat, as soon as possible. Winners will be [...]

John Rocker’s House

John Rocker, now 36, lives in the suburbs of Atlanta. I’m profiling him, eleven years after his Sports Illustrated meltdown, in the May issue of Atlanta Magazine. For the profile, I talked to Jeff Pearlman, author of the infamous SI piece; Otis Nixon, former coke addict, Braves outfielder, and Rocker’s unlikely best friend; as well [...]

Dept. of Pleasant Surprises

Just learned that my story about the death of John Celmer (“Final Exit“)—which appeared in the March 2010 issue of Atlanta magazine—has been named a finalist in the “Reporting” category of the 2011 City and Regional Magazine Association (CRMA) Awards. Atlanta magazine, where I’m a contributing editor, picked up six finalist nominations. Winners will be [...]

The Krispy Kreme Challenge, Regurgitated

A year ago this Saturday, I ran a race called the Krispy Kreme Challenge. I think the name conveys its unique “challenge” satisfactorily, but I wrote about it for Runner’s World magazine if you’d like the nauseating details. The article appeared this month, and has received a lot of, ahem, feedback. Some harrowing pics by [...]

Holyfield’s Latest—and Perhaps Last—Fight

This past Saturday, forty-eight-year-old Evander Holyfield fought his fifty-sixth professional boxing fight. In his twenty-seven-year career, he’s fought an average of twice a year, though that frequency has slowed considerably over the past decade, as many have called for the retirement of the former four-time heavyweight world champion. He’s lately landed in the headlines most [...]

Fragment from an Autobiography: Numismatics for Kids

I went to conventions when I was very young. They were for people who collected coins: Old men with nervous hands and fancy watches and thick glasses. And, once in a while, their sons. “Numismatists,” my father said. “That’s what we’re called.” There is something reassuring about coins kept in a book. Especially pennies, with [...]