Friday, July 5, 2013

CLARKSVILLE PASTOR GOES UNDERCOVER AS HOMELESS MAN FOR A WEEK
We all SAY looks don't matter. It's what's INSIDE a person that counts. That's how we want people to treat us. But the new pastor at a Clarksville Church found out that's not how most of us act.
Before his first sermon at his new church, Reverend Willie Lyle went undercover and lived on the streets with the homeless, for four days. As he delivered his first sermon to his new congregation, who hadn't seen him before, he started out in his big overcoat, beard and long hair, then shaved and got a haircut as he spoke, and took off the overcoat to reveal his suit underneath, basically tranforming himself from looking like a homeless person who many of his own congregation had ignored, to the new pastor. He reminded them to be more like Jesus, and not make their love conditional to what people look like. You can read his story HERE.

RAIN CANCELS NASHVILLE JULY 5TH FESTIVITIES
Last night, hundreds of thousands watched the big fireworks show in downtown Nashville and listened to live music. Tonight's Independence Day festivities for downtown Nashville have been cancelled because of the rain.

INDEPENDENCE DAY HOLIDAY INJURIES, DEATHS
There have been some holiday-related mishaps already: two people died in 4th of July parade accidents, fireworks foul-ups sent 20 people to the hospital and did more than a million dollars in damage, and in the largest single incident, at least 20 people were taken to the hospital when part of a professional fireworks display exploded too close to the ground in Simi [[ SEE-mee ]] Valley, California.

TENNESSEE DRUNK-BOATING ARRESTS
And 10 people so far this weekend have been arrested for boating under the influence in Tennessee,  166 tickets handed out. That's so far. The weekend is just starting.

FREE "TOW TO GO" AVAILABLE THROUGH SUNDAY
 Triple A is offering the free Tow to Go rides again this weekend. Through Sunday you can call, whether you're a Triple A member or not, and they'll give you a free ride home and tow your car home behind you.  (855) 2-TOW-2-GO or (855) 286-9246 There is a 10 mile limit to the ride. 

FLOODING POSSIBLE
Safety officials say with the chance of rain right on through next week, we may see some flash flooding here in Middle Tennessee in the next few days, so be aware of that as you make your outdoor plans. 

CRAIGSLIST PREDATOR CAUGHT IN MURFREESBORO
A La Vergne man accused of luring young girls with a Craigslist ad goes back to court on Monday. 38 year old Edward Tarras Jr is charged with posting an ad asking for young women to pose for photos for possible publication, then intead, assaulting them. Tarras was also charged with sexual exploitation of a minor, and is held on 1 and a half million bond. Police say you should ALWAYS check out the validity of such ads, or make sure you meet in a public place ONLY.

PAULA DEEN PARTS COMPANY WITH AGENT
Celebrity Chef Paula Deen and her longtime agent are calling it quits. It's the latest in a series of partner breakups for Deen after her admitted use of racial slurs. Much of the merchandising empire her agent had helped her build, has fallen apart in the past few weeks.

PATIENTS HIV-FREE AFTER BONE MARROW TRANSPLANT
We seem to be on the verge of something really amazing: two more HIV patients have no signs of the virus in their blood after getting bone marrow transplants. The Boston researchers who treated them, however, are not calling it a cure yet, because they say the treatment is not a viable option for most patients. 

ZIMMERMAN TRIAL CONTINUES TODAY
The Florida murder trial of George Zimmerman resumes today. The prosecution is expected to call Trayvon Martin's mother to the stand to testify that the voice calling for help in the background of the 9-1-1 call was her son. 

CLARKSVILLE PEDESTRIAN BURNED AFTER DRIVER SLAMS INTO GAS PUMP
A man is in critical condition in Vandy's Burn unit after an out-of-control car crashed into a gas pump yesterday morning in Clarksville. The injured man was just walking through the gas station and was hit by the fireball from the explosion. John Ward, the man who crashed into the pumps, says he blacked out behind the wheel, though police are investigating. He was not injured.

MAN ARRESTED FOR USING FAKE GRENADE TO SCARE VICTIM AT NASHVILLE BAR
For some reason, a guy named Khari Whitehead thought it would be a great idea to take a fake hand grenade into a Nashville bar, and scare people with it. Police say Whitehead approached a woman and tried to kiss her without her consent, and when the bouncer asked him to leave, he flashed the fake grenade and threatened the bouncer with it. Cops caught up with him later, and found out the grenade was phony, but Whitehead was arrested for aggravated assault and using a prohibited weapon for a hoax.

DOLLAR GENERAL SUED OVER UNPAID LUNCH BREAKS
Two Dollar General employees from East Tennessee are suing the company for forcing them to work during unpaid lunch periods, which is a violation of federal labor law. They say the practice is prevalent at stores around the country. (Lawyers are seeking class-action status so anyone else forced to work off the clock can join the suit.) 

DUCKY DYNASTY SWEET 16
How did you celebrate your 16th birthday? Duck Dynasty star Willie Robertson wanted his daughter's Sweet 16 to be unforgettable, so he hired American Idol winner Scotty McCreery to come to young Sadie's party and sing to her. 

'TWILIGHT' ACTRESS KRISTEN STEWART GETS TATTOO AT NASHVILLE PARLOR 
Bella was in Nashville. Twilight Star Kristen Stewart reportedly got tattooed at a popular downtown Nashville parlor recently. Pride and Glory Tattoo, on 2nd Avenue, posted photos on its Facebook Page. 

CRIME RING CAUGHT IN MURFREESBORO
Two men and a woman are accused of shoplifting from several Walmart stores in Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Tullahoma, Manchester and Shelbyville. Murfreesboro officers made contact with 39-year old David Sands on Reid Avenue after he was suspected of stealing a computer from the Walmart on Old Fort Parkway. After questioning Sands, cops realized he had partners in crime: a woman and another man, James Pelham, who admitted that he drove around the woman Shannon Bragg, who would pick out the computers to steal, and he went back in to steal them. She was paying him 150 bucks per trip. All three face theft and conspiracy to commit theft charges.

VANDERBILT CUTTING JOBS
Vanderbilt University Medical Center has cut an unspecified number of jobs across departments at the academic medical center. A Vandy spokesman says the jobs are to address workplace performance, and are not considered layoffs. Earlier this year, the hospital said it was facing "unprecedented financial challenges" because of the federal sequestration.

SNOWDEN LATEST
Members of Iceland's government are looking into granting immediate citizenship to Edward Snowden.  That would mean he would not have to reach Iceland's soil to be granted asylum. ( The proposal is being made by some members of parliament.  However, there was only limited backing for the idea when it was discussed yesterday. )

PIEDMONT CLEANING UP SECOND SPILL
For the second time since May, Piedmont Natural Gas is cleaning up a drilling spill.  Officials say bentonite clay got into the Sevenmile Creek and one of its tributaries near Edmonson Pike and Huntington Parkway.  Bentonite isn't toxic, but it can cause a cloudiness in the water that can hurt wildlife. 

TIDBITS
SMART WATCH COMING OUT THIS WEEKEND
The Pebble Smart Watch -- which lets you check e-mail, answer phone calls and more -- arrives at Best Buy stores on Sunday.

SPIELBERG REMAKING A CLASSIC MOVIE
Steven Spielberg is planning to remake the classic, "The Grapes of Wrath."

GUY PRETENDS TO BE WAR VETERAN TO GET FREE DRINKS
This is low. 23-year-old Christopher Lee Proe ran up a $4,000 bar tab in Hyannis, Massachusetts, by falsely claiming he was an Iraq war veteran. The management at the bar let him write personal checks over five nights in August after he told them he wanted to celebrate his safe return from Iraq and honor the memory of fallen comrades. The checks turned out to be as bogus as his story.
He was later arrested and had outstanding warrants from three states, including one for impersonating a police officer in Ohio and failing to register as a sex offender in Indiana.

MAN BIKES 5,000 MILES THEN HAS BIKE STOLEN
Lee Simmons of Barnsley in the UK peddled his bike 5,000 miles across the world-- only to have his bike stolen when he got back home. Lee rode the bike across Asia including Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia and said, "In some areas my bike was worth more than some people's houses but nobody thought to steal it. Most of the time I never locked it up and I always felt it was safe." That was until thieves broke into his grandfather's garage back home and took it. Lee told reporters, "I am so disappointed I got all that way and the bike gets stolen in my home town by someone who hasn't got a clue what it means to me." (BBC News)