Monthly Archive for March, 2008

Remember 1970s Horror TV Shows?

Fellow local history buffs, albeit those a bit older than me, might be interested in this note from Sean Kotz:

Where were you on Saturday nights during the witching hour in the 1970s? Well, there is a good chance, like a lot of Virginians, you were watching your local horror host. This summer, Horse Archer Productions is brushing back the cobwebs as we film the new documentary, “Virginia Creepers: The Horror Host Tradition of the Old Dominion.” We will be charting more than 40 years of Virginia’s television history by talking with hosts (former and current) as well as fans to create this just in time for Halloween. In fact, we’re very interested in involving you, and are currently planning a Charlottesville area taping for fans, so if you remember Slime Theatre or Cobweb Theatre or any Virginia host or show, contact us at And go to the website to learn how your stories, memorabilia, and memories can be part of this movie.

I’m always glad to see efforts to document recent local history. John Hammond Moore’s excellent “Albemarle: Jefferson’s County, 1727-1976” peters out in the 1950s, Moore presumably figuring then-recent history would interest few. Here’s hoping somebody takes on the task of updating it soon.

More City Signs Proposed

City staff want $750k for signage, and council is balking, Seth Rosen writes in today’s Daily Progress. It was just last year that council met staff’s $500k signage request with $200k in funding, so it’s hard to see why they’d support a request so large so soon. Councilors David Brown and Satyendra Huja are quoted as clearly opposing the proposal, Mayor Dave Norris doesn’t think it’s a great idea, and Julian Taliaferro supports it.

Further Developments in Shooting Case

From the Progress and the Waynesboro News Virginian, some addition developments in the case of yesterday’s shootings on Route 64:

For those of y’all who aren’t familiar with firearms, a .22 is the smallest caliber bullet you’re likely to come across. Both handguns and rifles commonly fire .22s. They have so little powder in them that there’s very little recoil, making it simple to aim a weapon that takes this cartridge. If you had to pick a caliber to be shot in the shoulder with, this would be the way to go. But though it might be small, it’ll punch right through the side of a car and, once it starts to tumble, tear up anybody in its way. Jackson Landers (disclosure: my brother) coincidentally explained this on his blog just two days ago.

Though it remains to be seen which law enforcement agency is responsible for this — Albemarle or state — somebody deserves a lot of credit for making an arrest within 30 hours of the first shot being fired. This could have been a source of a lot of fear and anger, but instead it was wrapped up immediately.

Dumb and Dumber Arrested

Slade Woodson

The two budding young rocket scientists that went on a shooting spree on Route 64 are in custody. Police went to Crozet’s Yonder Hill Farm to make the arrest around 5am this morning, only to have a guy with a handgun come at them. (That was presumably the second suspect.) They shot him, natch; he’s in the hospital now. Then they arrested 19-year-old WAHS alumnus Slade Woodson. These two dopes used Woodson’s own orange 1974 Gremlin on their little adventure, which was caught on camera at the bank that they shot up yesterday morning and eventually abandoned up 29N near Greene. Woodson’s already got a record (read as: fingerprints on file), convicted of auto theft and arson a year ago. He was stealing trucks, driving the hell out of them, ditching them and burning them. Presumably charges against the second guy will be coming soon, at least for threatening a cop with a gun, and I’d bet the shootings, too.

Either these guys were drunk out of their minds or they are two of the dumbest bastards ever to the walk of the face of the earth. I vote for “both.”

2:30pm Update: The Hook reports that the gunshot victim is not a suspect, and that there were five people in the house when the police showed up at 4:48am. It looks like it’ll be a few days until enough of this story comes out that we’ll began to piece together a proper narrative.

New Daily Progress Website

The Daily Progress has a new website, and it’s a big improvement for them. It looks like they’ve abandoned the beastly, totally insecure old content management system that they were using. Articles now have big-boy URLs. At long, long, long last, they have RSS feeds. Stories have tags. The search engine works. There appear to be lots of new features like integrated video, photo galleries, audio, etc. So the good news is very good.

New Daily Progress Website

But the bad news is very bad. Their archives are gone. Years of news have simply disappeared. Every link to every Daily Progress article from (and anywhere else) 404s, even links from just this morning. (WINA used to have a mind-blowingly great site, because they had news stories going back over a decade; it was a treasure trove. That all disappeared two years ago, apparently forever.) The RSS feed exists only in the abstract — it doesn’t actually work, and the fact that the layout has changed drastically means that my screen-scraped RSS feed is broken. So those of y’all who, like me, read the Progress primarily via RSS are out of luck.

The feed should be easily fixable, but the loss of the archives is a real bummer. There’s just no need to lose all of these articles when upgrading to a new CMS. The improvements, though, are great, and I’m impressed. For more about the changes, see the article by the paper’s web guy, Matt Rosenberg.



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