Sunday, July 31, 2016


   MONDAY, AUGUST 1ST., 2016
           TWO DOG NIGHT!

       My story begins on Valentine's
Day a few years back. A friend of
my wife's got us a unique Valentine's
Day present.
       Two plush dogs, one holding a
heart. Push the paw on one of them
and they burst into a rendition of
"I Got You Babe" complete with
the voices of Sonny and Cher.
       I must admit it took about 5
plays for the novelty to wear off
and the two hounds to be placed
on the shelf.
       Fast forward to about 10
months ago. Our new grandson,
then about two-months-old, pays
a visit and I caught his eyes looking
towards the two stuffed dogs. I
press the paw and they sing out as
his face brightens in a huge smile!
      Every time he's entered the
house since then, unless he comes
in sleeping, he searches for the
dogs and waits for me to activate
the music.
      As his first Birthday approached
I began searching for a twin set we
could offer as a present. Unfortunately
an exact match was not possible. But
we did find two other plush dogs that
"knew" the same song and the look
on his face when he and his Mom
opened the present told me my wife
and I had made a good choice.
     That said, it occurred to me that
parents are not always so pleased
with gifts that make, or allow a child
to make, a lot of noise. So I wrote and
attached a note to our "musical gift"
for their consideration. Allow me to
share it with you.
                 NOISY TOYS
                 Kid's gifts can make you crazy
    when they're drums and "noisy stuff."
                 But allow me to remind you of
     a thought I got from "Puff."
                  "A dragon lives forever.
      But not so Little Boys."
      All too soon there's silence,
      from all those "noisy toys."
                   So have patience when you
       hear them....though the roof may
       shake above.
                   All those sounds that fill
        your home.....are the sounds of
        children's love!

                   Hope those dogs keep
singing and that all your NEWS is good!



Saturday, July 30, 2016


SUNDAY, JULY 31ST., 2016

    I can just imagine what the
neighbors must have been
thinking when the fire truck
pulled up to my son and daughter-
in-law's house Saturday afternoon.
     They know my boy likes to
grill and probably figured he had
finally carried his well done
burgers a bit too far.
     But no! The firemen were
responding to a Birthday party!
Too many candles? No again.
The Birthday boy is just turning
      But Firemen and Fire trucks
were the theme for this "first in
a life time experience" and two
volunteers from the Wyoming
Fire Department brought their
truck round because, in still
another way, they wanted to serve
their community!
        They allowed all the "kids'
at the party to check out the fire
engine and all their gear and even
brought along a fire coat, helmet,
model extinguisher and toy fire
truck for my grandson who was
the guest of honor at this
particular party.
        You don't have to rush into
a burning building to be a hero...
as these two volunteers proved
to all the party guests! Thank
you gentlemen!
        Hope you stay safe while
serving and that all your NEWS
is good!


Friday, July 29, 2016


  SATURDAY, JULY 30TH., 2016
            LOOK AHEAD!

       I had a tough time getting to
Walmart last evening.
       Penndot, which is repairing
every bridge on which Interstate
81 crosses anything (at least it
seems that way) is demolishing
a bridge over Route 315 near
the store.
       The detour was just being
set up as I approached. So I,
like a lot of other drivers, found
myself caught between a road
block and a traffic jam.
        Like a lot of those other
drivers I discovered the best
option was an old fashion U
turn to back track to my
        Had I thought of it in
advance I told have checked
one of the many traffic
cameras Penndot has set up
so you can look at your route,
or something close to it, before
you head out.
       I checked it out when I
got home. By that time it was
dark. But the cameras were
operating (at least several of
them were) so I could see that
section of Interstate 81 near
where I had just traveled.
        They even offer streaming
video. That seems like kind of a
waste because streaming video
allows you to see moving
traffic. The last traffic I saw
on Interstate 81 wasn't moving.
Still pictures would have served
to tell the story.
        Apparently, by the time
I checked, all was well again
because no traffic problems
were in sight, Maybe I should
have waited till dark.
        Next time I'll have to
remember to look ahead before
I go. Maybe I'll even wave to
the cameras while I'm sitting
in traffic, or passing by.
        Hope you got where you
were going and that all your
NEWS is good!

Thursday, July 28, 2016


     FRIDAY, JULY29TH., 2016

      I don't know how close you really
watch the news on TV.
      I know from my days on the beat
that most people don't pay a whole
lot of attention except, perhaps, to
that dramatic sound bite that leads
any given story.
       I also know that a lot of news
people take it on the chin for being
bias. Truth is it's the audience that's
usually bias. Viewers have pre-conceived
notions about issues and when people
being interviewed express positions
contrary to those of the viewer it's the
reporter, or the station, or the network
that gets the blame for airing the
        But whether you agree or disagree
we're still getting the news we need.
Last night offered a perfect example.
        I was only half watching, as most
viewers do, when I caught the fact that
Thursday was National Chili Dog Day!
 I had completely forgotten! Or, perhaps,
never knew it in the first place!
         In any case, having been properly
informed, I called one of my area Hot
Dog stands and immediately ordered
"three, with everything, to go!" (After
all I had to get one for my wife too!)
         Within the hour we were
"celebrating" as we consumed the
foot longs as a tribute to this unusual,
and little known, holiday!
          Hope you'll pay more attention
now....and that all your NEWS is good!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016


       THURSDAY, JULY 28TH., 2016

     That paraphrase from the movie "JAWS"
 came to me the other night as I picked up
 a book on the movie recommended by my
 former TV colleague Alan Brocavich.
      Truth be told I've always enjoyed the
movie. But I don't have quite the obsession
my family seems to envision.
       Alan told me about the book "Jaws Log"
because it contains references to an accident
that took place on Chappaquiddick Island
back in 1969 involving the late Senator Ted
Kennedy and a young Luzerne County
woman, Mary Jo Kopechne who lost her
life in that mishap. I became involved in
that story when I testified in Luzerne County
Court at a hearing involving her death.
         And yet, ironically, as I began to read
the book the movie "JAWS" began to run
on the TV just across the room! Heck of a
coincidence don't you think?
           And how about this....though the
movie is a work of fiction the script also
includes the true story of the USS Indianapolis,
the ship that delivered the Atomic Bomb to
be dropped on Japan.
            The ship was sunk while returning
from it's mission and many of the men who
survived the sinking were killed by sharks!
             The anniversary of that sinking is
this Saturday!
              If we really wanted to get into
all these stories...we're gonna need a
bigger blog!
              Anyway, I'll keep reading and
watching and probably listening for that
ominous music they always play when
the shark is getting close!
               I have to be careful! I've caught
a couple sand sharks in the past and maybe,
just maybe, one of their big brothers may
be trying to get even!
               Hope I'm wrong and that all
your NEWS is good!


Tuesday, July 26, 2016


   WEDNESDAY, JULY 27TH., 2016
            WE ALL SCREAM!

       The 90 degree temperatures we've
been experiencing recently are a real
challenge to most of us. We're told to
stay hydrated, make sure we apply sun
screen, and take things slow and easy.
        I especially like that last part!
        Another challenge, for us, that
comes with the heat is finding the best
ice cream. Now in that respect I'm a
little like Will Rogers. I never met an
ice cream I didn't like.
         Oh there have been a couple of
flavors I never completely understood.
To me, for instance, Cotton Candy
belongs on a cardboard holder at the
circus. Not as an ingredient in an ice
cream cone!
         We've found plenty of great
Ice Cream Stands. Of course our
search didn't begin this year. We've
been looking for many years.
         "Incredible Edibles" in
Nescopeck is probably my
personal favorite. I haven't found
any other place that offers as much
high quality ice cream for such
reasonable prices! It's also a pleasant
top down drive on a hot summer day.
          But right here at home, Plains
Township, there's no question I
enjoy our stops at "Curley Cream."
Of course part of my enthusiasm
stems from tradition. I don't know
how it got started. But at this stop
my wife stands in line and brings
the ice cream to me! And often
that line is long!
          Isn't tradition wonderful?
          Hope you've enjoyed a
cone or two from your favorite
stand and that all your NEWS
is good!


Monday, July 25, 2016


  TUESDAY, JULY 26TH., 2016

     These hot humid days of late
have been keeping a wife very
       She's got a collection of
flowers and plants growing in
the front and back yard as well
as in numerous pots and
containers scattered about the
place. Two have even be
planted inside an old pair of
the work boots I used to wear
whenever it snowed.
       A fair collection of gallon
milk jugs, now filled with
water, have been set out on
the porch for easy access. And
there's the hose, of course, to
cover the flower beds.
       All of this equipment was
ready during yesterday's heat
spell when, suddenly, a far
more powerful watering
system opened up nearly downing
the flora and fauna (the wild
cats) around our place!
       In some areas, mostly north
and east of us, streets, cars, and
basements were watered as well.
        Hope I don't need those
boots and that all your NEWS is good!

Sunday, July 24, 2016


   MONDAY JULY 25TH., 2016

     Bob has been my friend since
First grade! His wife became my
wife's friend the first time they met.
      But Bob and his wife live in
upstate New York so we don't get
to see each other as often as we'd
      On Sunday, however, our
long lasting friendship and mutual
appreciation for classic cars and
airplanes brought us and some of
my family together near the quaint
Susquehanna community of Eagle's
      The airfield just outside of town
is now home to a beautiful Air &
Auto Museum!
       What a treat to see airplanes
from the early 1900's preserved like
new and in air worthy condition!
On Sunday's several of them took
to the sky just as they did in days
of old!
       And if that weren't enough
there's a huge building packed
with classic cars that look as though
they've just come off the assembly
line! I had a couple of those "back
in the day." Wish I still had them.
       While my cars didn't last my
friendship with Bob did and still
does. We celebrated that by
enjoying the memories then sharing
a picnic lunch at the nearby World's
End State Park!
        Days like that really make
life worth living!
        Hope you enjoy a few too so
that all your NEWS is good!

Saturday, July 23, 2016


      SUNDAY, JULY 24TH., 2016
      DID YOU HEAR THAT!!! ???

         It was one very impressive
competition! Drivers with some
of the most powerful car audio systems
you've ever seen came to Dupont
Saturday to "sound off!"
         A new business, "Audio
X T C," hosted the event which
attracted drivers from Pennsylvania,
New York, and New Jersey.
        Each driver took his or her
turn pulling their car up to the
garage where microphones linked
to a computer were affixed to the
inside of their windshields. When
they were ready they blasted their
speakers as loud as possible to
determine whose system generated
the most sound!
        The hosts did set a maximum
limit so the reverberation didn't
break any nearby windows!
         These folks are very serious
about their woofers and tweeters!
And to insure the bulk of their
sound stays inside their vehicles
during competition they even
have associates sit on top so most
of the vibrations are contained!
         The cars and trucks look
great and their sound systems
are very elaborate! The drivers
were very happy to see a
competition held locally and
I suspect there will be more!
         I was tempted to pull my
Miata into the line and turn up
my stereo as high as I could.
Then I realized I had little or
no chance. My top was down
so nobody could sit on top
even if I wanted them too.
        Besides, how much
sound could I generate with
my cd of oldies!
        I really enjoyed seeing,
and hearing, these friendly
competitors. Hope this new place
does well and that all your NEWS
is good!


Friday, July 22, 2016


   SATURDAY, JULY 23RD., 2016
              YARD WORK!

    The heat was oppressive. But there
was no doubt about it. Our grass needed
to be cut.
     Who you gonna call?   Ryan! Our
grandson! But this time he called us!
      Realizing it had been awhile since
the last time he aided us with yard work
he called to ask if we might need
      Ironically my wife and I had just
talked about that possibility about an
hour earlier! Great minds do seem to
think alike!
       Ryan has always been willing to
lend a helping hand and my wife is
especially happy to have his hands
help with the yard work!
        I'm sure that part of that feeling
stems from the fact that I, on occasion,
have mowed down things that were
not suppose to be cut. You know.
Flowers, plants, even the electric cord
that powers the lawn mower. And,
No, that was not intentional!
       I am now limited to holding the
cord as Ryan operates the mower.
I'm pretty good at that although I
sometimes balk when I get close
to the part where the electrical tape
covers the spot where the two ends
I snipped are spliced together.
       Anyhow, I didn't have to stay
out for an hour. The grass is neatly cut.
The flowers and plants are intact. And
the cord is still in one piece (unless
you count the splice!)
       Hope you've got a good gardener
like my grandson and that all your
NEWS is good!

Thursday, July 21, 2016


    FRIDAY, JULY 2ND., 2016

     Near as we can tell our new
neighbor first moved in about a
week or so ago. He's already the
talk of our development!
     We haven't met as yet and
I'm not so sure how I'll react
when we do. Not that I'm
prejudiced at all.
     But I might want to say a
thing or two about him coming
through my yard whenever he
feels like it.
      I thought I might confront
him Wednesday evening when
all of us put out our garbage or
pick up the following day. But
he didn't show up.
     I'll know him when I see
him! Another neighbor snapped
his picture on his cellphone and
shared it with me. That way I'm
sure to find the right guy.
    Hope I can find the right words
when we meet....and that all your
NEWS is good!


Wednesday, July 20, 2016


     THURSDAY, JULY 21ST., 2016

    While my advice is directed towards
men, all are invited to review this list
which is designed to aid the male of
the species when confronted to that
dreaded trip to the grocery store.
      First, whenever possible, go by
      I have found the difference between
solo shopping and shopping with you
spouse to be between 45 minutes and
an hour and a half!
       Going on my own I'm generally
in and out in 15 to 20 minutes. Add
my wife and the time expands
        There are a number of reasons
for this. Here's an example. On
Wednesday my wife forced....that is...
"asked" me to go shopping with her.
She had a list which, I believe, included
about 20 items.
       She said there were a couple of
things she had not included on the list
and volunteered to get those while I
just followed the list.
        When we linked up awhile later
she reviewed my cart then sent me back
with items that were either the right
product but the wrong brand, or the
right brand but the wrong size.
         Meanwhile her cart, with those
other "non list items" was rapidly
approaching the size of mine!
          I picked out a pack of
hamburger buns. She told me there
were too many.So I took them back
and got a smaller package.
         As I returned, however, she
realized there were more hamburgers
in the package she wanted than she
expected. So, of course, I had to go
back and re-switch the package.
         I was proud of my self when
I picked up the packages of iced
tea. Then I realized it was lemonade
she wanted.
         So gentlemen, if you can't go
alone, do come with a lot of patience
and a couple of shopping carts.
        Hope we got everything...and
that all your NEWS is good!

Tuesday, July 19, 2016


    WEDNESDAY, JULY 19TH., 2016
           DO GHOSTS GET HOT?

      Some of us get chills when we hear
a good Ghost story. But my question is,
do ghosts get hot?
       Every now and then our travels
take us by an old house that seems
the perfect setting for a ghost story.
We found one on Tuesday as we
enjoyed a top down ride not far
from "metropolitan Shickshinny."
       If I were searching for a haunted
house this one would definitely be in
the running. A huge old tree nearly
hid the place from a rural road that
passed in front.
       The property was overgrown
with vegetation including moss and
grass that hung off the porch roof.
        But then we noticed the air
conditioner in the center, second
floor window! No moss. No grass.
Could it be a recent addition to this
old place?
        Other than the AC unit there
was no sign anybody "lived" there.
Perhaps just ghost hoping to beat
the heat? Oh well......that's the
        Hope no one's actually
"stone cold" and that all your
NEWS is good!


Monday, July 18, 2016


  TUESDAY, JULY 19TH., 2016
            MOVING ART!

      Art is everywhere! There was
a time when one wanting to enjoy
artwork would have to go to a big
city museum or, perhaps, travel
to places like Florence.
      Then local galleries gained
popularity. And look at places
like downtown Pittston where
huge murals grace several buildings
and an "art walk" brings people to
town on the second Friday of each
      Yes, art can be very moving.
In fact I caught some that was
moving the other day...literally.
It was at a railroad crossing!
      As my wife counted the
cars passing in front of us I
noticed how man of the freight
cars had been turned in murals
on wheels!
      It was amazing. In so many
ways. First there were so few
cars not covered in some kind
of graffiti. Second, some of the
art work was really very good.
And some was so involved
you've got to wonder how in
the world the artist had that much
time to work on a full sized railroad
boxcar undetected!
      So, next time you're feeling
you'd like to take in some fancy
art work...just wait for the gates
to go down and the train to roll
      Hope you enjoy the show
and that all your NEWS is good!

Sunday, July 17, 2016


  MONDAY, JULY 18TH., 2016

     We were at my grand daughter's
soccer game when the plane pulling
the banner flew overhead. It read....
Plane rides-Car Show Today 40
Fort Airport.
       I wasn't really thinking too
much about it. After the game some
of the family gathered at my son and
daughter-in-law's house where my
boy fired up the grill and loaded it
with hamburgers and hit dogs.
       But as I was eating another
plane flew overhead. It was a Bi-
plane. You know. The kind with
one high wing and one low one.
Similar to the ones that shot King
Kong off the Empire State Building
in two movies!
        Since we were just a few blocks
from the airport I thought I'd break
away for a few minutes to get a
closer look. I wasn't disappointed!
         Even though I missed some
of the cars at the show a few of
the classics were still around to
remind me of the days when
Sports cars came mainly from
Britain and could be purchased
for under $3,000!
          As for the planes the
Wyoming Valley Airport boasts
two trainers from World War II
and a third used for training in
the Viet Nam era. Like the
Sports cars, the aircraft are in
fantastic shape!
          I'm pretty sure the Bi-
Plane could still handle Kong
if they make another movie!
I love to see them keeping
the classics going.....partly
because I am one!
         Hope you get a chance
to see them some time and that
all your NEWS is good!