Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

February 18, 2013

BUSINESS CONFIDENTIAL: Catfish, guns, and some local promotions dominate this week’s business news

Ben Tinsley
Jacksonville Daily Progress

JACKSONVILLE — CHEROKEE COUNTY — In the modern day vernacular, the word "catfish" has apparently evolved from a straight-up noun into a verb-ish term that describes online romances in which one of the partners turns out to be fictitious.

It's a relatively-new phenomenon, most notable in the strange tale that dominated recent news reports about Notre Dame football star Manti Te’o and his imaginary girlfriend.

Previous use of the word would be, "Two servings of catfish, please." Now it's "Manti Te'o got 'catfished.'”

However, that's not the case in Jacksonville, where "catfish" still means that diverse group of ray-finned fish whose distinctive barbels resemble a cat's whiskers.

And there will be plenty of said catfish to gobble down at the Knights of Columbus Friday catfish fry, sponsored every day during Lent from 5:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church, 1023 Corinth Road.

The delectable fried catfish will be accompanied by beans, coleslaw, hush puppies french fries and pudding.

Acceptable donations will be $10 for adults and $5 for children.  Questions?  Call 903-586-4538.


Call him the Gun Whisperer. Or not.

Native son Jerry Wood, a seasoned gun repairman with 35 years of experience, has returned to Texas to open up "The Gun Room," which started business in December and had its official ribbon cutting on Feb. 8.

Wood said his business does not include an indoor gun range — as some might assume — but should prove to be very beneficial to those customers with gun needs and weapon ailments.

"We just buy and sell and trade and do a little bit of repairs," he said. "We just moved back here from Colorado."

Born and raised south of town, the friendly Wood owned an Indian gift store and gun shop in Colorado for roughly 20 years.

When he moved back to the Jacksonville area, he found he still wanted to work rather than flat-out retire.

"I'm here because I'm just too lazy to stay at home," Wood said, laughing.

The business at 1508 E. Rusk St. is open from 9:00 a.m.- 5:30 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Anyone with questions is asked to call 903-541-1344.


Two area residents recently received significant work promotions.

Austin Bank Jacksonville employee Crystal Bateman has been appointed vice president, lending officer and relationship manager. And officials with Stream Global Services' local call center in Jacksonville recently promoted Alexander Good from customer support agent to team manager.  

Jeff Austin III, Vice Chairman of the Board at Austin Bank, praised Bateman as a true professional who is dedicated to giving customers exceptional service.

“We are proud to have her as a member of the Austin Bank team," he said.

Lora Western, human resources manager with Stream, said Alexander Good goes above and beyond the call of duty on any occasion it is needed.

"Since joining the Stream family, Alex has shown a desire to do his best every day, maintain a positive attitude and go above and beyond what has been asked of him," she said. "Alex is an example of an agent building a career at Stream."


I'm still gathering information from area residents willing to recommend what they consider to be the best cup of coffee or espresso in the city of Jacksonville.

As I've said before. the beverage has to be hot, tasty, have lots of caffeine, and  have the capacity to wake me up the morning. If you email me at btinsley@jacksonvilleprogress.com, I will put your suggestion on a tallied list. Later, I will travel around town, sampling one cup  per day. I will ultimately proclaim a winner in this column.

So. You can be convenience store, a donut store, a coffee store, or whatever. But if you sell any form of Joe to your customers, please contact me.

Ben Tinsley, a Jacksonville Daily Progress reporter with over 20 years in the journalism industry, writes Business Confidential, a column designed to help promote and help spotlight the diverse and growing business community of Cherokee County.

Wish to submit ideas? Simply contact Ben Tinsley by emailing btinsley@jacksonvilleprogress.com or call him at 903-586-2236. Tinsley can also be followed on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/bentinsley or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/ben.tinsley.12.