Lightning bugs leave bright spots in our heart

The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.

-- Mark Twain

I saw a lightning bug the other night and suddenly I felt like I was 7 years old again.

How many summers did we spend chasing and capturing and displaying those mysterious little creatures?

I recall one night that was exceptional. I had already gone to bed when my father came and got me up and led me to the kitchen back door.

"Look at that," he said, pointing outward.

The woods that formed the tree line at the back of the yard were absolutely filled with blinking, darting moving fireflies. They were everywhere. It was a galaxy of little greenish lights -- a lightning bug constellation.

It resembled those Christmas light-webs people throw over shrubbery, but larger. And they were all moving and swirling.

"What's going on?" I asked him.

"I don't know," he answered. "But I thought you'd want to see it."

I did. And I've never seen anything like it since.

IRA DAVIS: It has been years since we've heard much from Ira Davis , who died over the weekend at age 89. But if you lived in Augusta or Richmond County in the 1970s or 1980s, it seemed like a day didn't go by that didn't find Davis taking on City Hall -- usually over tax issues.

To be honest, I admit that he could be very irritating. He was always visiting our newsroom with boxes of documents or papers that he thought provided proof that government was not being honestly run. As a young reporter, I was often tasked with trying to verify his claims, which often proved unfounded.

Still, there is something so essentially American about a citizen who is not afraid to stand up and challenge those elected to represent all of us to do their duty. In the open. In front of everyone.

FALLING TREES: When I mentioned my falling pine tree Sunday, several of you made comments. And Lori Scott shared this:

"As a licensed insurance agent I wanted to point out ... Trees are not covered under a home policy for wind coverage but the damage done by them if they should fall on something is covered subject to the policy deductible.

"I have received calls from many ... regarding conditions of their trees or neighbors' trees and what would happen if they fell. In a lot of cases they have told their neighbors of their concerns regarding dead, unremoved trees. My advice to them has been to send a certified letter to the neighbor putting them on alert of their obligation to tend to the problem ... Once this has been done, if something happens and their insurance company is notified, the repairs will come out of the pocket of the negligent person and not the insurance company."

TODAY'S JOKE: Everett Fernandez shared this one:

Lawyer: "Judge, I wish to appeal my client's case on the basis of newly discovered evidence."

Judge: "And what is the nature of the new evidence?"

Lawyer: "Judge, I discovered that my client still has $500 left."

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