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I’d like to thank the Academy


  • By The Newnan Times-Herald
  • |
  • Jul. 29, 2022 - 3:35 PM

I’d like to thank the Academy

The Newnan Times-Herald

I was at an award ceremony for a co-worker last night.

I go to my fair share of award presentations, as I am lucky enough to work with people deserving of winning awards.

My mind tends to wander as I sit and listen to people speak. It’s not a favorable trait, but it’s one I can’t change. As I’m sitting there daydreaming, I usually think about what I’d say if I were to win an award.

I’m none too keen on public speaking, so I’d probably just stutter and stammer my way through some awkward little speech. In honor of my dearly departed father, I’d probably crack some joke that I thought was hilarious but the listening audience would not.

Since I don’t see myself winning any awards anytime soon, this column will probably serve as my only chance to give this speech I’ve daydreamed about at all the ceremonies. So humor me.

First off, I’d like to thank the Academy. (Actually, that’s a different speech.)

I’m going to use the old “turtle on a fencepost” analogy..

As it goes, if you ever see a turtle on a fencepost, you know he didn’t get up there by himself – he had some help. Someone put him on that fencepost. That’s certainly my case.

I’m on a pretty good fencepost at the moment, and I definitely had the help of several fine people.

Probably the first friend I made when I came to the agency in which I work was a man who taught me how to be a better human being just by being himself. He taught me when you live out in the country like he and I do, money is useless. I could fill a column with things this man has done for me and never accepted money for. I like to think I’ve returned the favor, though I’m sure I’m in his debt still.

I received a call last Sunday about him, the kind of call you never want to receive. Thankfully, he’s well on his way to a full recovery. If I know him, he will be out working his land in a week or two.

Then there is the corporal I had when I was on patrol. He has an amazing wealth of knowledge about this profession we’re in, and he was always more than willing to share it with me. I remember being in middle school parking lots, in the middle of a work night between calls, and him showing me yaw marks and what to make of them. If I see him 10 times a week, my eyes light up 10 times.

Then there is the short guy. And anyone who knows me knows I’d never make a speech without mentioning the short guy, and everyone who knows me would know exactly who I’m talking about. There are two men on this earth I say “I love you” to when I’m hanging up the phone. One is my son, and the other is the short guy. I’m a manly man, don’t ya know? I’m not about telling some fella I love him, but I mean it when it comes to the short guy.

Last and certainly not least, are the guys we call 01 and 02. Not only have they put me on the fencepost, they’ve taught me what the heck I need to be doing while I’m on the fencepost. Actually, that may sound like the past tense, but they teach me daily – I’m pretty dumb sometimes and need lots of instruction.

I don’t think many kids grow up aspiring to be a turtle, but when you land on a fencepost such as the one I’ve landed on, you’re pretty happy with your lot in life. I don’t have enough space in this column. I could keep going, and I hate I couldn’t mention others. Maybe one day The Newnan Times-Herald will give me an entire section, and I could give this topic its proper due.

Based on how hard a time it is getting me to get anything in by a deadline, that’s probably doubtful.

Ok, that’s my speech. Should I ever win anything, and you hear me saying this, act surprised. And if I’m ever in the audience while you’re giving your speech, just know that I’m doing my best to look attentive while I’m rehearsing my speech in my head.

Toby Nix is a local writer, guitarist and public information officer for the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office. He is the author of two books, “Columns I Wrote” and “A Book I Wrote.” He can be reached at tobynix@yahoo.com .