The inaugural Rhino Times Schmoozefest of 2017 will be held at the World of Beer at 1310 Westover Terrace on Thursday, Jan. 26 from 6 to 8 p.m. It may a little late to celebrate the presidential inauguration but it won’t be too late to talk about it. As always beer, wine and hors d’oeuvres will be served gratis to those who sign in and where a name tag.


You never know what you are going to hear from speakers from the floor at City Council meetings. The only restriction is that speakers are not allowed to speak on agenda items, but that leaves the rest of the world open for discussion.

On Tuesday, Rev. Mazie Ferguson told the City Council that she had been speaking to a college class and asked a student to recite the preamble to the Constitution. Ferguson said she was shocked that the student had no idea what she was talking about, and she suggested that each council meeting be opened with a recitation of the preamble.

To show how it would be done, Ferguson led a good number of people in the audience in the recitation of the preamble to the Constitution.

Ferguson is right, it’s not something we should forget. And if you happen to be one of those who can’t get past “We the people,” here is the entire preamble.

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”


While sitting at the lengthy City Council meeting on Tuesday, City Councilmember Justin Outling was talking about the council’s need to do something besides hiring consultants to study things.

I thought what most of this group doesn’t understand is there is a difference between doing something and getting something done. We need to elect some more folks to the City Council who understand the difference.


When Berkshire Hathaway bought the News & Record in 2013, it already owned the Winston-Salem Journal, and people said Warren Buffett’s company would combine the two into one regional daily newspaper.

The first change obvious to readers was that the News & Record starting printing far more articles from the Winston-Salem Journal. Then the News & Record lost its publisher and the publisher of both papers is in Winston-Salem.

With the announcement that this year the press in Greensboro will be closed down and the News & Record will start printing in Winston-Salem, things have started moving a little faster and it’s a sad day for Greensboro. When the printing is moved to Winston-Salem it will be the first time in over 125 years that there hasn’t been a daily newspaper printed in Greensboro.

If Berkshire Hathaway continues on this path, in a year or two, instead of two papers printing on the same press, the Winston-Salem Journal and the News & Record will be one newspaper headquartered in Winston-Salem with an office in Greensboro and a Greensboro edition.

Most of the pages of the editions will be exactly the same and the difference will be on the designated local pages. It’s cheaper to put out one paper with local editions than two separate papers, and it appears Berkshire Hathaway is cutting costs everywhere it can.

Of course, the name of the new paper may be a problem. The Greensboro-Winston-Salem News & Record Journal is a little long. But how about the News Journal, the Journal Record or the Record Journal News?

All those issues will be worked out in time by folks in Omaha, Nebraska, where Berkshire Hathaway is headquartered, by people who may not have ever been to Greensboro or Winston-Salem and think Greensboro must have a lot of grass and trees (which is true), and as far as Winston-Salem goes they must wonder why any city would name itself for cigarette brands.


I’ve written about my successes losing weight, so it only seems fair to write about my failures. When we came back from vacation at the beginning of December, I discovered that I had gained five pounds. I had decided to eat whatever I wanted on vacation so it was no big surprise, although since it seemed like we walked 10 miles a day, I did think I might be OK.

But that’s when I made a mistake. Instead of getting right back on my regimen and losing the weight, I decided not to worry about it until after Christmas, and then I gained another five pounds. It seems to me it is not twice as hard to lose 10 pounds as five pounds, but about four times as hard.

Next year I think I’ll find room in my suitcase for my scales so I can weigh myself every morning. But for this year I’m looking forward to eating again in February or maybe March. It goes on so easy but it doesn’t want to leave.


If you’re still wondering why former Gov. Pat McCrory is no longer governor, an example of one reason he might not have won is the chairman of the State Board of Education, Bill Cobey, who McCrory appointed.

Cobey says that the state school board is doing “a great job” running the schools in North Carolina. That is something he, his fellow state school board members and former state Superintendent of Public Instruction June Atkinson might agree with, but most of the state doesn’t. If the people of North Carolina agreed, they would have stuck with Atkinson instead of electing Mark Johnson, a 33-year-old who is virtually unknown in the state. Nothing against Johnson, but people most likely voted against Atkinson, not for Johnson.

Cobey is also leading the charge to sue his fellow Republicans in the legislature for taking some of the power away from the state board and giving it to Johnson. To most people it makes sense for the full-time superintendent to choose his subordinates rather than have the part-time state board choose who works under him.

But also in this case, there should be some party loyalty. It appears that Cobey is more loyal to Atkinson and the people who worked for her than the Republican leadership in the legislature and the new Republican Superintendent Johnson, who the people elected hoping for some change.

Appointments like Cobey likely cost McCrory some support among conservatives, and although they may have still voted for him, they may not have donated to his campaign. And when you lose by 5,000 or 10,000 votes, it doesn’t take much to make the difference.


Because I often have to get up at odd times, it is not unusual for me to wake up holding my iPhone in my hands and wondering how to make it stop making that noise. But I had a new experience this week.

I was getting up at 12:35 a.m., which is an unusual time to start the day, and I woke up thinking that I needed to send myself a message that I was going to sleep for 10 more minutes. All I had to do was hit the snooze button on my iPhone, but instead I started looking for an app that would let me write a message to myself and deliver it in 10 minutes. I thought about an email or a text, but couldn’t figure out how I would know to wake up in 10 minutes and read it.

Fortunately, while searching my phone for a solution, I saw the clock icon and remembered the proper procedure for sleeping 10 more minutes. But I did find the thought process of sending myself a message 10 minutes into the future pretty entertaining – but not so entertaining that I didn’t go back to sleep.