Free-For-All Friday 3/8/13

Feel free to use this post to make comments and ask questions about local issues not yet discussed here over the past week.

Comments close on Monday.

120 thoughts on “Free-For-All Friday 3/8/13”

  1. Good morning!

    I am sorry to see Everybody’s go. It seems everything at Emory Village has evolved except for the vacant service station. What is the plan for that property?

        1. sorry trudy…reading for comprehension is clearly not my strong suit! completely ignore my reply please & thanks 🙂

  2. Let’s talk local homebuilders. Likes and dislikes, experience through the building process and satisfaction with the final results – Thrive, Stoneyriver, Lockman, Sullivan, Arlene Dean, Beaudry any others?

    1. Thrive just finished a 4-5 bedroom beauty over here on Coventry. I was impressed at how nicely it fits in with the houses around it. Thrive also gave me a brief tour while it was under construction and I thought it was outstanding quality.

    2. Rob Morrel with C3 Companies built our home and did a wonderful job. Highly recommend! We also had Sullivan do work on our last home, which was great as well.

    3. Lockman built my house and I know him personally. Great, honest guy, and the house is excellent quality. The home came with a 1 year warranty and we did need a few small fixes here and there (detail stuff, nothing at all major) he always had them done with no questions asked. Highly recommended.

    4. Cayenne Barnes at Professional interriors is the best in the business (

      Her integrity, customer service, work ethic, and QUALITY are absolutely amazing. She is doing our major renovation on East Ponce now and it has been a wonderful experience to work with her.

    5. Mike Stivers at 3M does great quality work. Thrive seems to throw houses up in six weeks. I doubt the quality over the long haul.

    6. Highly recommend Penn Carpentry. These guys really know what they are doing. They keep their promises and know how to stick to a schedule AND a budget. Best of all, their work is top notch. They are conscientious about delivering high quality results. Really terrific!

    7. Hammertime was very good on our renovation about 5 years ago and just did another job on our street. Flexible during the planning and construction processes. And he would have been on time were it not for us changing the kitchen plans late on. And his bid on the job was much lower than a few others we got.

  3. There are 108 likes over at the “Come to Decatur Souper Jenny, Pretty Please” website… even Jenny has liked this page. If you want see Souper Jenny in Decatur, then come like the FB page. If we can get Souper Jenny, then the sky’s the limit …. It would only be a matter of time before we could woo Trader Joe’s in the same manner, right? Plus… the featured post over there today is a gorilla bath video… what’s not to like?

    1. Mr. Fats, I like yer style. Thanks for putting a smile on my face this morning in cubicle land.

      1. I can’t think of many other pieces of music that make me as happy as that particular performance, except possibly the solo version Elis Regina did on a Brazilian TV special. Oh hell, I’ll post that one, too.

  4. Is anybody having a tree cut down today or in the near future? I am setting up a small, hobby blacksmith shop and I need a section of stump or large limb to use as a stand for the anvil. About 20″ high by 14″ in diameter would be excellent.

    1. There is/was? a wood lot over next to Quantum Mechanics on Talley St. that could probably cut you a stump. Last time I walked through there they had a bunch of trunks stacked up.

      There’s also a fire wood place up near Scott and N. Decatur. Don’t know if they have any large trunks or not.

    2. There’s still some large pieces of wood near the Adair Dog Park on Trinity from one of the trees that fell earlier this week.

    3. Quite a lot of large cut straight across trunk pieces of an old tree that fell last week at the end of McKinnon Drive in the left of Cul de Sac. I’m talking seriously large circumference.

  5. Can anyone recommend a full-time daycare in the Decatur / Druid Hills area that you are happy with (and may be taking new students this summer)? We are looking for a closer option for our 2 year old now that his sister got into College Heights for next year. We missed the lottery at the Phoenix School already. Thanks in advance.

    1. We enjoyed Druid Hills Presbyterian when we were there 12+ years ago (wow, I can’t believe it’s been that long). Have also enjoyed First Baptist Decatur (First School), Frasier Center at DHS, and of course you could try College Heights itself.

    2. Oak Grove United Methodist is a really nice program; NAEYC accredited. We did a Pre-School and Pre-K with them.

    3. We are looking for places for our soon to be 3 yr old so have done some research but cant speak to how good new places are. I visited Cliff Valley school this week and was really impressed with the facility and teaching style. They have a program for 2 yr olds I think…

    4. Have you verified for sure that the sibling won’t skip to the top of the list at CHECHLC because of sibling preference?

  6. To Mr. Bad- drive down N. Parkwood Road- there is a tree down and I’m sure you could get a piece of it, although it may be larger diameter than what you want.

  7. I’m looking to hire someone who can help with some gardening. I don’t think a landscaper is what I need. We have some garden beds that need digging out and then I’d like them planted with perennials and herbs that will work in those spaces. We don’t have the time for the digging (or much maintenance), and my success with herbs especially is mixed so I’d love to hire someone who really knows what will do well. Any recommendations for this type of work?

    1. Decaturmom, the guys over at Farmer D’s are great at making accurate recommendations for both appropriate plants for different spaces and good soil amendments. Once you have secured the plants and the dirt (I think they even deliver), I expect you can find a strapping young high school student who would be glad to wield a shovel for cash. Good luck. Herb beds are great.

  8. Greening Vacant Lots: Planning and Implementation Strategies

    New York (December 2012) – A report prepared for The Nature Conservancy by the New York City Soil & Water Conservation District, provides ten case studies illuminating how leading cities plan, administer and implement programs that convert vacant lots to green space, in the context of regulatory requirements and broader redevelopment goals. ACTrees member organizations participating in the study include Parks & People Foundation, New York Restoration Project, Openlands, and The Greening of Detroit.

    Storm water and vacant lots are both underutilized resources that can improve the environmental, economic and social well-being of cities. Municipalities around the country utilize ‘hard’ infrastructure such as retention tanks and end-of-the pipe treatment plants to manage storm water runoff. Vacant lots and abandoned buildings reduce quality of life and property values, discourage investment, and stress municipal budgets.

    Recently, cities around the country have begun to manage storm water runoff using green infrastructure to advance EPA regulatory requirements. The City of Philadelphia is a national leader; the Philadelphia Water Department (PWD) has a goal of filtering or storing the first inch of rain with green infrastructure to reduce the volume of combined sewer overflows.

    Each case study traces one program or initiative led by a public agency or NGO from the planning stage through implementation, emphasizing how programs have overcome barriers. The report analyzes across the cases to identify effective practices cities use to green vacant lots, advancing open space and storm water management goals. These findings are applied to the context of Philadelphia.

    The report provides five recommendations to the PWD, based on local assets and barriers to greening vacant lots:
    •First, we recommend that the PWD pilot a neighborhood-based vacant lots plan. This pilot should create a planning model that could be applied to other CSO areas in the city, identify institutional barriers to implementation, and develop strategies to overcome these institutional barriers.
    •Second, to support this planning effort and coordinate among city agencies and NGOs, we recommend the PWD dedicate a position to the greening of vacant lots.
    •Third, planning efforts should integrate active uses where feasible, potentially including larger vacant lots already used as parks.
    •Fourth, we suggest the PWD develop a smaller sites strategy to construct and maintain storm water greenways.
    •And finally, the PWD should consider flexible models of ownership and maintenance.

    Download the complete report, “Greening Vacant Lots: Planning and Implementation Strategies.”

  9. Touch A Truck is tomorrow!! Decatur Active Living invites you to bring your child, a grandchild or a neighbors child (Of course you would ask first 🙂 ) and come on out for lots of fun. At the Calloway Parking lot, 120 W Trinity Place, 10am until 1pm. Looks like the weather will be great.

  10. Monday, March 11th – ONA monthly meeting – holding elections for President, VP, Treasurer, and Secretary – also come hear the latest on April Jazz night artist lineup, and Kathleen Johnson from American Home Heating and Air in Decatur will hold an info session on HVAC maintenance – 7pm at the Solarium on Hill St.

  11. Any update on the bar going in at the end of College and Mead – signed thirsty Mead road residents….

  12. Decatur Patch reports that another armed robbery occurred on Ponce de Leon Place, at the Wells Fargo ATM, on February 26, just 19 days after a similar previous incident. While I know that these two separate incidents do not suddenly make the street a dangerous area, per se, I am a little surprised that I haven’t noticed an increased police presence, nonetheless. That stretch of road is dark at night and often quiet, and it seems as though nefarious characters have taken note. Please take care should you choose to walk down this road at night!

  13. Anyone have info on when MAR is expected to open? It doesn’t look like much has been happening over there lately.

    1. It has been opening “next month” for several months. February 17 on MAR Facebook promises March (which makes perfect sense when pronounced in French).

  14. Happy Friday, everybody! I’m especially psyched that Daylight Savings Time begins this weekend (2 am Sunday)…more daylight makes this sun-lover happy, happy, happy!!! 😀

    (Sorry for the perkiness–I’ll make sure to temper it in my next post.)

    1. I have yet to decide whether the tradeoff of losing an hour over a weekend is worth the extra sunlight.

      1. Why can’t we push the clocks ahead an hour at 4pm on DST Friday? Why must we cut into our late Saturday plans?!!

      1. I like falling back. For a few days I feel like I’m an early riser and way more punctual than I actually am.

        Springing forward can suck it, however.

    1. I have used Mike Gambill of Southeast Mortgage several times over the past few years. I kinda got talked out of using him this last time (long story) and boy, was I sorry! Mike’s service and knowledge can’t be beat — he knows his stuff. Will NEVER use anyone else again. His contact info is:

      Mike Gambill

    2. Info for you below. Worked with us in today’s market, with a house in Decatur, with comp issues, and managed to save us a bundle. And, he’s a nice guy!

      George Prezimirski
      Mortgage Banker
      Rehabilitation/Renovation Mortgage Specialist
      NMLS 6898
      Fidelity Bank
      Decatur Mortgage Office
      160 Clairemont Avenue
      Decatur, GA 30030
      Office Direct: 404-553-2046
      Mobile: 770-853-3788
      E-fax: 770-216-1890
      E-mail: [email protected]

    3. Another shout out for Mark Moore and the Moore Team. We’ve done a few refi’s and a home purchase with them. They’re great!

    4. +1 Mark Moore. I say that as a personal client and a Realtor who had closed over a hundred transaction with Mark over the years.

    5. Are you a USAA member? If so I recommend them highly. Great rates and they were willing to do the closing at my house.

      1. +1 for Mark Moore. USAA not so much. While we use them for almost everything (banking, insurance, etc.) and generally think they’re great, their mortgage lending branch was underwhelming at best.

  15. Can y’all recomend a local body shop for a Honda, preferably one that works with reasonable speed? I tried searching the archives but came up empty. Could be user error.

    1. Spivey’s Body Shop in Scottdale; previously recommended in FFAF. Just had a bumper replaced – cost came in slightly below their reasonable estimate and they had the car done in one night, which considering paint needs time to dry, is about as fast as is humanly possible. They’re very friendly too.

  16. I have a dog park/child appropriateness question, hence the handle I’m posting this under. Last night, my wife and I got to talking. Okay, a better way to say it is that I posted a question to my wife. We’re active users of the Adair dog park. Like, 3-4 times a week active. We’ve got a great dog, a small little dude that loves other dogs and other people. The problem is that he loves them so much, he often jumps up to greet them. This isn’t so much a terrible problem, accept when a 5 year old happens to be wandering around the dog park. Inevitably, our dog sees this little human, and wanting to shower him with affection, jumps up to greet him. As the human child falls to the ground, my wife and I rush to help and apologize profusely. Now…I don’t actually think we did anything wrong here, but I apologize because it’s the proper, decent thing to do.

    Due to a fallen tree in Adair Park, our dog park is out of commission for a few days. So I brought our little guy to the Oakhurst Park, and noticed they have a fenced-off area inside the park. I think it’s to stop people from walking into a mud trap, but it got me thinking that perhaps we should have a fenced-off area inside the Adair dog park that is just for children, as a way to allows them to be in the park with their parents and pets, but stay safe from the animals they’re interacting with.

    So yes, I realize I’m proposing to pen your child in a fenced-off area. Yeah, I realize that as a parent you believe that your child can do, and has done, nothing wrong. I also realize, that you don’t realize, that every dog owner at that park hates that fact that you brought your kids with you, and think you’re nuts for doing so. I’m guess you hate this idea, and my wife thought I was crazy for suggesting it.

    But where do the rest of you stand…practical idea at a compromise, or insane response by a crazed dog owner?

    1. Not sure your idea will fly, but know that there are many of us who do NOT think you are crazy. Small children running at a dog park are just like human stand-ins for the mechanical rabbits at a dog track – BAIT.

    2. +1,000 as it’s a DOG park wherein the dogs run free and should be held harmless if a child interferes with the dogs romping about…

      in a regular park, I’m 100% with the kids conversely in a DOG park, I’m 100% with the dogs

      1. Anon too, I appreciate the fact that I’m not the only one hiding my identity based on the topic we’re discussing. The fear of parent reprisals is matched only by the intensity of their vengeance.

        1. Agreed. Some of my neighbors have sorted out who I am when using my “real” name here and the last thing I want is a lecture about child safety and a dog’s place…

          And for that reason, I shall raise a bourbon to Keith F. this evening for his boldness and daring. That and I really want to see him chuckle is some random “my kid can do no wrong” mom’s face.

          1. Please tell me no one’s actually lectured you about a “dog’s place” while you were standing in a DOG PARK. I could’t contain my laughter if someone tried that on me.

            1. Wasn’t at a DP – was on my street when I asked a young child not to pet my pups as they aren’t the friendliest sorts when meeting children – adults no problem.

              I listened to her concerns regarding having “cute dogs that don’t like kids” and how I should “train them to respect children.”

              Never walked down that street again as I already have enough crazy in my life at the moment…

              1. dang it was in my neighborhood not street…

                and now it’s beer time since i jumped two hours by mistake…

              2. I’m sorry. You lost me “I listened to her concerns…”

                What street was this? Hopefully it’s close to us so I can walk our dogs down it soon. I’m always looking for a little more crazy!

                1. Cray cray sometimes carries a knife… obvs I don’t live in D proper… as for the too cute: I ain’t shavin’ my dogs for no one, cray cray or not cray cray…

                  Just learned this cray cray term on another thread and it makes me laugh.

    3. I don’t think the kid pen is necessary. If you want your small child to learn first-hand about dogs and how they can be knocked over by them, take them to the dog park. If you expect to be apologized to by a dog owner, don’t take a child to the dog park. If my dog knocks over your child in a dog park, I’ll say…”Oh, that’s so cute,” and you can live with it or not, but don’t try complaining to me ‘cuz I’ll be deaf as a teenager being asked to take out the trash.

    4. As a parent of a young child and owner of 2 dogs, I would never take a child to a dog park. I had the child before I moved to Decatur and have not visited the dog parks for that reason. But I know children (perhaps under age 12) are not even allowed to enter the dog park at Piedmont Park.

      I suppose the kid pen within the dog park is a good compromise but I’d prefer for the rules to prohibit kids, if they don’t already.

    5. I am a dog owner and the father of two young children, and have no problem with my identity being public.. I bring my dog to the Oakhurst dog park almost every day. I bring my children a few times a week (yes, with the dog). My kids have learned how to behave properly in the dog park, and I have learned how to behave when they are there. They are able to enjoy themselves, but other dog owners are not made to feel uncomfortable, nor are they made to take any extra precautions or responsibilities because my children are there.

      – When you arrive at the park, go sit at the table, at least for a while. Let dogs come to you, and approach them the way you were taught by your parents.*
      – Stay near your parent(s) at all times. Do not wander.
      – Ask a dog’s owner if it is okay for you to approach their dog.
      – If you must move from place to place, walk, don’t run.
      – Refrain from playing with dogs you don’t know.
      – Do not wave sticks around.

      – These parks are first and foremost dog parks. Dogs should not have to change their normal behavior to accommodate children who are not behaving appropriately. If dogs are jumping on your kids, or if your kids cannot behave like I’ve outlined above, please remove them from the dog park. Dog owners should not be expected to remove their dogs because they are behaving normally around improperly behaving and/or improperly supervised children.
      – Please stay near small children at all times. Near means 6′ or less.
      – Do to bring infants to the dog park unless you know every single dog that is there.
      *- Teach your children how to behave around dogs–not just your dog(s), but all dogs. This means no hugging, kissing, grabbing, hitting, or yelling. Dogs are not humans. We are not their parents, nor are our children their brothers and sisters. We are their owners, and all humans must put themselves above dogs in the family hierarchy. This is especially important in a dog park, where dog social dynamics are crucial to keeping order. If you have not taught your children how to properly behave around dogs, do not bring your children to a dog park.
      – Some dogs jump, slobber, and run into children. Please prepare yourself for this eventuality.
      – Some dogs play rough. This is normal. If it makes you feel as though your children are not safe around dogs who play rough, please remove your children from the park.

      There are many children I have met who conduct themselves excellently at the dog parks. The few times I have felt that children may not be safe, it was because their parents weren’t watching them.

      1. +1 Love this response. I have a dog and I have a kid. Sometimes the dog gets antsy and needs to run with his friends so I take him to the park. My kid comes along sometimes but we do exactly what you said, Al. Sometimes aggressive dogs come into the park and if I have my kid with me or not, I leave. Because not only am I worried about my dog getting hurt by the aggressive dog, I’m worried I may get hurt too. Teaching kids how to be respectful of dogs is priority number one. I can’t tell you how many times kids come running up to my dog to pet him, and although he is super friendly, the other kids and their parents don’t know this. I always ask kids that come running up to ask first to pet him instead of just petting him and tell them where and how to pet. My kid knows not to pet or go near strange dogs until she asks the owner first. Kids need to be taught how to be safe around animals because even family dogs can get scared and nip for their own protection.

      2. I too love this response. What Keith and Al said. I have kids and a dog. Dog parks are for dogs – that is why we built them. If parents don’t understand the risks, they are naive parents.

        But I can sympathize with Anon’s concern — if you are single parent that morning trying to juggle a kid or two and a dog (or two), it can get a bit difficult. Heck, I hate juggling the dog leash, the cup of coffee, and cleaning up dog poop with a poopy bag. If my kids were still toddlers, that would simply multiply the problem. A kid pen is but one way to help that.

        But there are likely easier ways than something that looks like a kid prison (and no matter how well informed, people will object). Adair Park has a community-driven democracy to it. Why not donate a pen? I’m not joking – we keep one of those portable pet pens (30″ tall) in our condo living room for the dog, and there are similar products for toddlers.

    6. I can see the logic of no kids (at least under tween size) in a dog park..
      Conversely, dog owners should not let their dogs come over to meet dogs who are accompanied by small children (in places that are not a dog park)
      I suppose neither of these can be enforced, but may be just common sense.

      1. I cross the street if I don’t know the temperament of the dog, just to avoid any potential headache. It also makes me a little nervous to see small children in the dog park, but it’s up to the parents. To me it doesn’t seem worth risk considering that dog behavior can be erratic and go from playful to a fierce brawl in seconds.

        Maybe this was construed as insensitive since it didn’t make it through over yonder, but collars and custom tags are less than 5 bucks, there’s no good reason not to have on your pet, even if they’re always indoor, or you have a gate. Accidents happen under the best of circumstances.

  17. A reminder that early bird registration for Tour deCatur ends Sunday. If you’ve been putting it off (like me), take a couple of minutes to sign up at … Great event for kids and community.

  18. Anybody know if Harbour has the outside bar going today? I’ve got a hankering for sunshine and an adult beverage.

    1. Try the patio at Native . . . it ought to get the late afternoon sun. I had a delicious (and reasonably priced) lunch special there today.

  19. Just a shout out for Footnoting History, a historical podcast series some of my friends and I started as we trudge through and after graduate school. Tomorrow’s post will explain how it became illegal in England to hire someone to kill somebody else!

    Here’s our website:
    And, if you like us, please consider “liking” our fb page: or following us on twitter @historyfootnote

  20. A very tiny terrier in a red t-shirt and a red, white, and blue ribbon collar (no tag) was wandering around the 200 block of Drexel Avenue at around 5pm today; we managed to grab the little munchkin and will take him/her over to the Village Vets on McDonough for safe keeping, since we’ve never seen this little dog before and don’t know whom he/she belongs to (we have two intolerant cats so our house isn’t a good staging area).

    1. The little guy has no chip, and is wearing no tag. Village Vets could not take him, and he is on my porch for the time being. Our dog does not play well with others so I am not sure where he will spend the night. I am hoping that his owners are out there looking for him.

      1. Take a pic and email it to DM so he can post it and then we can all share it on facebook. There have been many happy Decatur dog reunions that way. I’d offer to help shelter him but we are full up with three dogs, one of whom is much worse than “doesn’t play well with others”.

  21. Does anybody know where I can get extra copies of the March issue of Decatur Focus? Several teachers, that don’t live in the city, would like to get copies of themselves on the cover with President Obama. Thanks!

    1. City Hall, second floor in the back or maybe even in the rack right outside the Commission Room.

  22. Renfroe Middle School is having its 6th Annual Auction on March 15th 2013. The Renfroe auction will be held at the DeKalb History Century/Old Courthouse on the Square, 101 East Courthouse Square, Decatur GA with dinner, cocktails and a silent auction. This year the auction theme is “Building for the Future”, and while all proceeds are dedicated to funding programs, events and classroom items to benefit students, a specific portion will go to beautification and update projects for the Renfroe Middle School campus. Tickets can be purchased at You can also get raffle tickets for an intriguing (expensive) pre-auction raffle that has hitherto only been publicized to Renfroe families.

    There will be great auction items including vacation homes, original artwork, Braves tickets, restaurant gift cards, and many other goods and services from your favorite Decatur stores, restaurants and services.

    The Renfroe Auction is sponsored by Arlene Dean Quality Homes; Leon’s Full Service; North Atlanta Obstetrics and Gynecology; Sherwin Williams; Thrive Homes; New Orleans Snoball Cafe, Sugar Moon Bakery; Private Bank of Decatur and Shelter Mortgage (formerly Fairfield Mortgage).

  23. My lawn makes me saaaad. Looking for a lawn service (not landscaping) to seed, fertilize. Something like Tru-green. Who do y’all like and why?

  24. Many thanks to the Youth and other members of Decatur Presbyterian Church for taking my old latex paint cans this morning. Such a well-organized and useful project.
    I think I may have had the most gallons of old paint…

  25. Touch a Truck was awesome today! Thanks to those who made it possible! My kid had a blast. And a great shout out to the PitaPit where we ate after the trucks. Nice, friendly place to run in and get lunch. The falafel was great!

  26. Anyone with information on water main break on Superior ( north of Scott). ? No water on Ferndale since waking this morning.

  27. OK, let the snarking begin…
    This afternoon I was going south on Church St approaching Ponce. I was several cars back with some behind me when the light changed. As I crossed Ponce, there was a woman on a bicycle with a child trailer stopped and signalling a left turn with her arm. P{problem is, no left turn is allowed on Church northbound at Ponce. She had traffic held up beyond Sycamore just the same as if she had been a car attempting an illegal turn. Continued ignorance of traffic laws does not endear me to cyclists.

    1. I actually find that kind of scary and irresponsible if she was towing a load of children….

  28. good morning, sleepy heads.
    yes, DST sprang forward and you lost an hour.
    but fear not, you can still download a FREE copy of my new book, The Red Pill, on Amazon.

    your support this weekend has propelled it to #6 on Amazon’s Top 100 Philosophy downloads– placing it shoulder-to-shoulder with some of the worlds’ great classics.

    please download your copy now, and leave a Reader Comment, if the book speaks to you.

    1. Rick, I think there may be a few DM threads on which you haven’t tried to sell your book. Although all the ones I’ve looked on recently seem to contain your pitch.

    1. The YouTube posted on Patch is easy to watch; almost like being there, but no refreshments. Both candidates look pretty darn good. We’re lucky.

  29. Do NOT just use the answers given in this guide; check the actual laws and other sources. ” Adolfus cried loudly as he fought to regain his footing on the bloodied ramp before he could be slain by his attacker. A hammer grip works nicely when employed with heavier Cold Steel Throwing Knives.

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