Meadville Tribune


January 26, 2013

After a lifetime of riches, it's time to 'play the next play'


Well, I guess this is goodbye. I'm moving on — retiring after 40 and a half years at the Tribune.

I hope that wasn't too blunt or quick-to-the-point, but it's not easy knowing how to say goodbye and go away after spending a "lifetime" somewhere.

Before I try to climb too high up on any pedestal, though, let me humbly acknowledge that most of you don't even know who I am, and a large number thought I must have retired long ago.

OK, for the seven or so people who are still reading, let me just say it's been a great ride. When I was hired here on Aug. 12, 1972, the late, great editor John "Spike" Siegel ensured me that I was embarking on a job I would find "interesting and exciting almost every day" and that I "would never get rich" doing it. With that advice and $120-a-week salary, I was on my way.

I found, though, that "rich" comes in many varieties.

After most of a decade as a sports writer, and a couple of years copy reading on the city desk, I spent the decade of the 1980s as a photographer, then finished up with 22 years as an assignment editor, copy editor and page designer, and with lots of managing-editor duties. (I'm not quite sure what my title ended up to be; it's probably on a business card somewhere in the back of a desk drawer — I'll have to look it up.)

This column isn't about me, though, it's really about you. Rather than rehashing details of a small-town newspaper career, let's just visit my "top five stories" of the past four decades — a thumbnail description of the headlines that had the biggest impact on me personally and professionally.

Text Only
  • It’s hard to believe park will turn things around until secrecy ends

    Even if a deal is struck to save Conneaut Lake Park from a pending sale to pay off back taxes, it appears unlikely that the park will succeed unless its new managers pledge themselves to transparency and public accountability.

    April 22, 2014 1 Story

  • Public pensions for private lobbyists under fire

    Employees of the Pennsylvania School Board Association don’t work for any of the state’s 500 local school districts — not directly, anyway. They lobby lawmakers on behalf of those districts for things like funding.

    April 20, 2014

  • Many veterans suffer PTSD, which needs to be dealt with

    Initially, I intended this article to be about PTSD “Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.” I wanted to write about the myths and misconceptions that those four words may hold. But as the days went by, the story just wouldn’t come together for me. Everything I typed seemed to miss something. There was no feeling.

    April 17, 2014

  • Journalists in combat zones ‘write with light’ while risking their lives

    I first heard the news on National Public Radio on my car radio. On April 4, the day before elections in Afghanistan, an Afghan military officer walked up to a car in a convoy and opened fire. Anja Niedringhaus, a staff photographer for The Associated Press, died instantly.

    April 16, 2014

  • There’s no war on men and boys — it’s quite the opposite

    Two weeks ago, Paul Dici submitted an column titled “It’s time to fight against the war on men and boys” (March 28). Mr. Dici would have us believe that men and boys are being “wussified” by a progressive agenda that may jeopardize our national security. Also, he makes the point that men and boys are not given the same advantages (programs) as women and girls.

    April 14, 2014

  • McCord outsourcing ‘scandal’ reminds me of Y2K fears

    With only seven weeks to go until the May primary election, the campaigns are expected to get a lot hotter and more negative.

    April 13, 2014

  • Can we trust luck when it comes to the nuclear industry?

    Let’s review the history to better understand a major concern of today.

    April 11, 2014

  • Aging — is it a disease to be cured?

    If you are already old, get ready for what comes next. If you are not old yet but on the way, it is not too early to start thinking about aging and dying, because both are part of being human.

    April 10, 2014

  • Local high school students help keep future of journalism bright

    Significant technological and economic changes have caused some to question the future of journalism, both as a viable business enterprise and as a potential career. But if the proceedings of the eighth annual Northwest Pennsylvania High School Journalism Day are any indication, journalism is alive and well, especially in Crawford County.

    April 10, 2014

  • Reps want to hang ‘English only’ sign at the Capitol

    Pennsylvania, it turns out, is one of 19 states that have failed to address the menace that is non-English. Or maybe it’s un-English? Or dis-English? There must be a word for it.

    April 8, 2014