It was supposed to happen last year. Then COVID-19 happened.

It was supposed to take effect Friday. But, yeah, COVID-19 persisted.

For those of us weighing whether to get the REAL ID driver's license, well, our decision deadline was extended again. The original October 2020 deadline was pushed to October 2021 and then was pushed again — to May 3, 2023.

Rest easy friends, you've got another 18 months or so to decide if the REAL ID and the gold star it brings is worth it to you.

The REAL ID was designed to increase security in some specific places (think federal buildings and nuke plants) and to boost safety in flying. The state of Tennessee does not require it for any other purpose.

But the transition to this amped-up driver's license, which amazingly started with the REAL ID Act 16 years ago, has been extended more than Tom Brady's career or Stretch Armstrong's torso.

That we are still kicking this can down the road seems more surREAL ID to me.

Think about it this way: When we started down the REAL ID road, the fourth Harry Potter movie was in theaters, Facebook was barely a year old and still felt like an innocent social media hobby, and Tom Cruise was jumping up and down on Oprah's couch.


Finger on the button

We have no idea after three weeks of the NFL season which teams will be in the next Super Bowl in February.

But we know the halftime lineup, and since it includes rap superstars Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg and Eminem, among others, there are some other truths available.

First, as always, the number of snacks will make every Super Bowl party host work overtime before, during and after the game.

And considering the history of the halftime performers, they are going to need some extra folks staffing the 'bleep' button for salty language during intermission.


Obit observation

A person's circle is a fascinating part of their memory, don't you think? I do, and when I read the obituaries in the TFP, it strikes me the number of lives someone can touch.

It's hard to imagine someone with as big a reach as the Rev. Archie Hanner Jr. of Dalton.

In his professional life, Archie had three distinctly different careers. He was a soldier serving in World War II. He worked for Crane Foundry for three decades. And he spent the final chapters of his life leading three different churches as a minister.

In his faith, not only did he lead houses of worship, he had multiple sons follow his path into the ministry.

As for his family, well, Archie's circle is eye-popping. He was married for 75 years and was the patriarch of five generations when he died Sept. 18 at age 97.

He will be missed by his surviving children, his 23 grandchildren and his 53 great-grandchildren — as well as those three great-great grandchildren — and countless others who were in his amazing circles.

Contact Jay Greeson at

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Jay Greeson