The ancient philosophical question asks: "If a tree falls in the woods and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?"
Now drag this into the modern era: If it isn't on YouTube, did it really happen?
Whatever your thoughts are on his philosophy, U.S. Rep. Paul Broun has that base covered. If you didn't make it to his town hall meeting in Evans a couple of weeks ago, you can be there via the Internet through a video his office posted to the popular Web site this past week.
You can find the video here: youtube.com/watch?v=H0OjjwX4Me8. For some reason just going to YouTube and searching for it doesn't work, though that will find a video with poor-quality audio from one of the citizens attending the Evans town hall.
Such a search also will produce a lot of other videos with Broun speaking from the well of Congress - many of them accompanied by unflattering titles or comments. Somehow I don't think Broun's staff posted those.
My three-week experience of working two jobs ended for the most part this past week when Todd Rainwater came to work as the new publisher of our sister paper in Thomson, The McDuffie Mirror.
If you can get either the Aug. 13 or Aug. 20 issues of the weekly, you can have the rare collector's-item editions with my name listed as "interim publisher."
I haven't actually checked, but I hear they're a hot item on eBay.
Take the survey
While we're on an Internet theme, if you haven't already gone to the county's Web site to fill out the retail survey, there's still time.
The survey is listed as a link from columbiacountyga.gov. It asks visitors to list their favorite shops in the county, asks which shops they'd like to see brought to the county, and asks the same questions about restaurants.
It also asks a few questions about Internet shopping habits, seeks income information and asks for comments.
The information, which you can provide anonymously, is being sought by the county's Development Services Division. Director Richard Harmon plans to use the results of the survey, along with information gleaned from discussions with business owners and others, to help guide an overhaul of the county's ordinances.
That's an astonishingly refreshing approach: When's the last time anyone asked your opinion on development? Here's your chance to provide it.
(Oh, and to some business and restaurant owners? The survey isn't going to get you a "best of" plaque, so don't go stuffing the ballot box.)
A view back in time
When you go to that county Web site, after you finish the survey, here's something else you can do that's pretty cool.
Click on the "Maps Online" link, and once you OK the disclaimer and get to the county map, click to magnify the area around Belair and Washington Roads.
Get in close enough, and when the map changes to an aerial photo, you'll see that it hasn't been updated in a couple of years.
As a result, that view will give you a look back in time at the old Evans Middle School campus just as the demolition for Home Depot started. You can still see the football field, the bleachers and the field house. If you look closely, you can see a trackhoe, frozen in time, as it starts to tear down the gym.
The last time a school was demolished on that site was in 1954 when fire tore through the old Evans school. Billy Jackson is still seeking a good photo of that school before the fire; let me know if you have one.
By the time you read this, I will (hopefully) be recovering from surgery to my hand, torn up back in March when a finger got hung up under the collar of an uncooperative dog.
And I'll also be celebrating a birthday. I'm hoping an improved and healing hand will be my gift, and I'll be back to surfing the Internet before long.
(Barry L. Paschal is publisher of The Columbia County News-Times. E-mail email@example.com.)
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