Watching the annual "A Tuna Christmas" production at the Springer Opera House never gets old. The two-man performance requires the actors to play 11 roles each, including women. We can only imagine the behind-the-scenes manic orchestration it takes to complete the costume changes in time.
Each year, we laugh just as heartily at the same hysterical lines. The audience at Saturday night's show, however, was treated to a masterfully ad-libbed humdinger.
Paul Pierce, while playing Pearl Burrus, mistakenly used a wrong name to address Dixie Dewberry, played by Topher Payne, ably filling in for Ron Anderson as he battles cancer.
Payne didn't miss a beat. He stayed in character and deftly deadpanned, "Bless your heart. Everyone around town looks alike."
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And we applaud Payne and Pierce for not cracking up along with the crowd -- but still pausing long enough for everyone to enjoy the marvelous moment.
Then the show went on, indeed.
Gary Bruce really is a good guy.
The Columbus trial lawyer who advertises as "The Good Guy," did a good thing last Friday. Safe Kids Columbus gave away more than 600 bicycle helmets to kids. The last five years, hundreds of helmets have been given away through Bruce's generosity, which he downplayed when contacted by a Chatter scout who heard of the good deed.
Bruce deflects the credit to Safe Kids for the logistics of the event and coordinating dozens of volunteers. This year it was at the Columbus Public Library.
"All I do is write a check," Bruce said. "I can tell you I get more out of it than they did. It is a good way to start off Christmas."
The days of landing with a single employer early in life and holding a job until retirement appear to over.
Great Recession aside, job hopping has become the norm, particularly for millenials, with a Future Workplace survey a couple of years ago estimating that those born starting in the 1980s will change jobs every three years or so. That would mean 15 to 20 employers in a lifetime.
Part of it is the desire for upward mobility, with increasing responsibility and pay raises, and part of it is lack of long-term loyalty to employers, studies have found.
Overall, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics found that the average stint with an employer is 4.4 years.
That's what makes the 38-year stay at Synovus (and its division Columbus Bank and Trust) by Calvin Smyre that much more exceptional. The senior vice president of corporate affairs is retiring next week, although he remains a state representative with the Georgia General Assembly. Again, an extraordinary run considering he's in his 41st year in the legislature.
"I found that out when I was talking with some of the people in human resources" at Synovus, Smyre said this week when discussing his future. "They said the model that I have won't be repeated again. You just don't see that anymore."
That said, good luck to those seeking old-fashioned workplace stability, hoping for a long-term stint with a company leading to a decent pension. Then again, pensions are going the way of the dinosaur as well as employers do away with them and force workers to rely on 401(k) savings of their own for retirement.
But that's another story, isn't it?
Happy holidays, everyone!