Kick in the jazz

Dear Ace: I thought that Charlottesville was hungry for smooth jazz! At least that was what we were told when 107.5 switched its format 18 months ago. Now they are playing Kelly Clarkson and Rob Thomas and calling it the “Best Mix of Everything.” What happened?—Waves Goodbye Dear Waves: Leave that dial alone, kid, because […]

False alarm

Dear Ace: Why is it that every time I turn around in Charlottes-ville some kind of emergency vehicle is blazing by me with sirens blasting? Is Charlottesville perpetually in a state of emergency or are our civil protectors siren zealous?—Ears Ringing Dear Ringing: First of all, does Ace know you? You seem so familiar—the colorful […]

Why ask why?

Dear Ace: I’m confused about the sales tax law. I bought some over-the-counter laxatives today at Wal-Mart and was surprised when they charged me 5 percent sales tax. I thought over-the-counter-drugs weren’t supposed to be taxed. What gives?—Constipated and Confused Dear Confused: Sorry to hear about your, er, problem. But your question does raise an […]

Jefferson worship

Dear Ace: What is this Jefferson Bible? And why are the Unitarian-Universalists so into it?—Newt Estament Dear Newt: Jefferson had a Bible? It might be a case of the pot calling the kettle black, but that TJ sure was a shameless self-promoter!    To find out about the Jefferson Bible, Ace called David Takahashi-Morris, co-minister of […]

Jefferson worship

Dear Ace: What is this Jefferson Bible? And why are the Unitarian-Universalists so into it?—Newt Estament Dear Newt: Jefferson had a Bible? It might be a case of the pot calling the kettle black, but that TJ sure was a shameless self-promoter!    To find out about the Jefferson Bible, Ace called David Takahashi-Morris, co-minister of […]

Father figured?

Dear Ace: I recently heard that someone new has come on the scene to “vindicate” Thomas Jefferson from charges that he was pappy to at least one of Sally Hemings’ kids? Is this true, and who’s rushing to TJ’s rescue?—Peter Familias Well Peter, as you know, the whole little mountain was in a kerfluffle a […]

Sonic boo

Dear Ace: Am I the only one who thinks that the acoustics at the new Downtown Pavilion are a disaster? I went to an event there recently and the music was so distorted that it was painful to listen to. In their haste to finish the project, did they forget to hire an acoustical engineer?—Sore […]

Here today, gone tamale

Dear Ace: What happened to the Atomic Burrito kiosk on the Downtown Mall? One minute, it was there, and then the next minute it was gone.—Ivana Taco Dear Ivana: Choking back a nostalgic lump in his throat, Ace felt his heart aching for a love recently lost: a burrito, backed up by a Mai-Tai and […]

Recycling: Does not compute

Dear Ace: As any good modern consumer, over the years I’ve acquired a good amount of computer equipment. Rather than throwing the old models out, I’d much rather take them to a recycling center. Is there any such facility in, or near, Charlottesville?—Electronic Clutterbug Clutterbug: Just to test the limits of the City’s recycling program, […]

Pleased to meat you

Dear Ace: As I was strolling to Fridays After 5, I noticed a sign in the window of the former Virginia Diode company on W. Main (the building with the cool blue tile work façade). The sign was written in Arabic. What does it mean and who occupies the space?—Stan Skrit Stan: Arabic, eh? Well, […]

Pavilion: Totally grounded

Dear Ace: Admiring the new Charlottesville Pavilion, I noticed something, or rather a lack of something: lightning rods. Big and metal, the Pavilion is a prime electrical target. Where are the safety mechanisms?—Searching for Ground Ground: Growing up, Ace played on a Little League baseball team. Whenever an electrical storm approached, Big Daddy Atkins would […]

Beating the heat

Dear Ace: I’ve got central air in my house as well as a car that dips down to Kelvin if need be, and I’m hardly surviving this summer. Tell me, how are the homeless dealing with the heat wave?—Sympathetic Sweater Sweater: Heat wave?!? What heat wave? Then again, when you’re as ice cold as Ace, […]

In the dog house

Dear Ace: It’s been a year since the Charlottesville-Albemarle SPCA moved into the new building. How are things going over there? Is the new facility paid for?—Puppy Love Pup: To respond to your question about the building’s financial status, Ace can offer you two answers. The first answer is: Yes, the $6 million building has […]

Present tents

Dear Ace: Why is the Albemarle County Fair set to happen in August this year?—Fairly Confused Fairly: Ace also wonders about this unexplained change in date. He knows when he wants his funnel cakes and farm animals, and that’s in September, darn it! But nooo…this year Ace has to book his partying for August 2-7, […]

The sound and the fury

Dear Ace: I live within ear-shot of the railroad, so I have to know, what is going on with all of the railroad whistling?—Not Whistlin’ Dixie Whistlin’: All Ace can say is it’s about time someone asked about these railroad horns! Ace is fed up with late-night train horns unexpectedly interrupting his beauty sleep.    Puffy-eyed, […]

High-chair anxiety

Dear Ace: Why do so many restaurants not have high-chairs? My wife and I discovered five that didn’t—and could have kept looking. Shouldn’t high-chairs be standard equipment? Is this town so pro-student that it can’t permit serving more people with children?—Sourpuss in Booths Sourpuss: Ace immediately posed your question to the experts, seasoned local parents. […]

Grass routes

Yo, Ace. Our letter carrier needed a note from us—no joke—to give him permission to not walk on our lawn. He said the post office wants its letter carriers to deliver mail quickly, so quickly that they are obligated by job requirement to walk on the lawn to get the mail to the doors of […]

Tracks of my tears

Dear Ace: All of my local short cuts involve railroad tracks, but sometimes I find that I end up wasting a lot of time waiting for the trains to go by. Is there a train schedule so I can plan a way to keep my short cuts short?—Impatience Railhopper Railhopper: To shortcut his detective work, […]

Hide Receiver

Dear Ace: Like, where did all the pay phones go? I need to make a call, but can’t find a phone and don’t want to get a cell. —Anita Dialtone Good question, Anita! Even though Ace upgraded to wireless communications for his investigative calling, the dwindling numbers of local public phones have not gone unnoticed […]

When push comes to shrub

Dear Ace: I’ve been doing a considerable amount of plant dodging while strolling along the sidewalks around town. Obstacle courses can be nice, but it’s starting to ruin my walks. How do I make these homeowners keep their plants off my path?—Bush Whacked Ah, Bush. Ace understands your woes—plants can be a pain. If they […]

Duval or nothing

Hey Ace: You seem like a guy who knows what’s up with local TV. What ever happened to NBC Channel 29 morning anchor Bill Duval? Is he coming back or did he split town?—Earl E. Riser Earl, sometimes it’s hard to keep track of all the anchor-folk at NBC29. They seem to come and go […]

Boyd in the hood

Dear Ace: I was just wondering, who is Boyd, and what does he serve at his tavern?—Thirsty for Answers Thirsty: Reading your question, poor Ace felt an insatiable need to wet his whistle. So, he hopped in the Acemobile and headed toward Boyd Tavern, at the junction of Route 616 and Three Chop’t Road, just […]

Make the connection

Dear Ace: What’s happening on the Bypass near the 250 exit? I see lots of construction and dirt movers. McMansions? Rest stop? —Rhodes Scholar Rhodes: With all the earth-moving going on around town (or earth scorching, as the case may be—the first time Ace drove by the Hollymead Town Center site he thought a nuclear […]

Row your oats

Dear Ace: Cruising down Earlysville Road on my way to work each day, I always see a fleet of long, skinny boats next to the reservoir. I’m tempted to take my smokin’ date for a moonlit boat ride next Saturday night. But I wonder, who owns those boats and how can I use one?—Boatless Romantic […]

Mouthing off

Dear Dr. Ace, What’s this I hear about area dentists getting together to organize a dental clinic for low-income families? Where’s it going to be and how can I help?—Pearl E. White Well, Pearl, you ask an important question. Because if you aren’t born with good, healthy teeth you gotta buy them. Ace, for example, […]

Sloppy seconds

Dear Ace: What’s with those recycling boxes at Central Place? Some City project or what? And how can we be sure the plastics and glass bottles get to the recycling place, anyway?—Sierra Klubb Oh, my fine Sierra! Ace detects a sliver of skepticism in your query. Could it be that the one and only Sierra […]

Who’s got your number?

Ace, it’s not an emergency or anything, but I’m curious about this community phone system that can alert the community to crisis by calling everyone in an imperiled area. Who gets to use it and for what? Earthquakes? UFOs? A GOP invasion?—Chatty Cathy Cathy, Cathy, Cathy, talking dogs are more likely to take over our […]