If you take the southbound State Road 207 exit on Interstate 95 near St. Augustine, Florida, you'll see Café Erotica, a decrepit rural strip club. The café, which reportedly shut down in September, has been engaged in a bitter fight with St. Johns County code enforcement supervisor James Acosta. I know this not because I keep abreast of the club's activities, but because you can't miss the huge 10- by 40-foot sign it recently erected. Whenever we drive past this sign, my kids laugh like Beavis and Butthead. The ... read more

I was publicly humiliated at the local Target store this afternoon by one of the employees, a young woman who yelled at my children from a distance of 25 feet for being improperly respectful of Spongebob Squarepants decorative microbead pillows. Unbeknownest to me, Target Team Member Emily had stalked us all the way from the toy section to housewares, enraged when we haphazardly reshelved Parasol Kids foam chairs. If you're ever in Target and your demand for the manager is met by an employee's ominous ... read more

Tropical Storm Ophelia is hanging out off Florida's east coast, awaiting further orders from God. Yesterday's projected path was due west across Florida into the Gulf of Mexico. Today it's predicted to wiggle towards South Carolina, but Jeff Masters believes it will head northeast for a few days, do-se-do, alaman right, and come back to the U.S.: After heading east for a few days, all the models except the GFS agree that Ophelia will eventually loop back and hit the U.S. as a hurricane, perhaps even a major ... read more

I awoke this morning to 40 mph winds from an outer band of Tropical Storm Ophelia, which Jeff Masters of Weather Underground expects to become stronger: TD 16 gathered enough strength last night to be given a name -- Ophelia. Ophelia will be a name we will hear a lot of over the coming week. She is going to cause plenty of trouble, and will be moving slowly enough that we'll still be talking about her a week from now. ... With so much time over warm water, and the shear likely to decrease once the trough bypasses ... read more

The Road Trip blog in St. Augustine reports that several gas stations in the area ran out of fuel this weekend: ... both gas stations in my neighborhood were out of fuel today. One (a Chevron affiliate) was completely out and another (a BP outlet) was out of regular. In fact, half the gas stations between here and Jacksonville on US 1 were dry Saturday night. I haven't seen this myself, paying around $3 per gallon when I fueled up on Thursday. The Florida Times-Union reports current prices in Jacksonville ranging ... read more

I'm putting together a talk radio station lineup, in case I win the lottery and can bring liberal radio to Jacksonville. North Florida could use the variety -- I live within listening range of three stations that carry Rush Limbaugh live. I can only assume that the right wingers in this area are concerned that one or two stations might lose their towers to a hurricane or nuclear attack, so they've build some redundancies into the system. My rules: All hosts have to air live, should run in their entirety, and be a ... read more

The story about disappearing cruise ship passengers has been picked up by MSNBC. This may be a statistically improbable thing to care about, since 10 million people cruise each year and around 12 have gone overboard during voyages in five years. However, each incident affects thousands of people, because the ships turn back to participate in searches, and some may involve foul play rather than suicide or accident. There also can't be many more grim tragedies to endure than a loved one who disappears off a ship in ... read more