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My books can be purchased as e-books for only $1.99. If interested, just click here: Books.
Match Play is a golf/suspense novel. Dust of Autumn is a bloody one set in upstate New York. Prairie View is set in South Dakota, with a final scene atop Rattlesnake Butte. Life in the Arbor is a children's book about Rollie Rabbit and his friends (on about a fourth grade level). The Black Widow involves an elaborate extortion scheme. Doggy-Dog World is my memoir. And ES3 is a description of my method for examining English sentence structure.
In case anyone is interested in any of my past posts, an archive list can be found at the bottom of this page.
My newest novel, Happy Valley, can be found here.

Wednesday, May 14

Nosey News


So much news lately, most of it bad: kidnapped girls in Nigeria, civil war in Ukraine and Syria, a drunk wacko in Phoenix who drove nearly thirty-five freeway miles . . . the wrong way, finally striking and killing an off-duty police officer, horrible fires in California fueled by high temps and low humidity and winds up to fifty mph, the threat of the MERS virus, and the stories go on and on. And most of the news people are just thrilled to have so much to report on. You know, the old on-the-scene reporter shoving a mike in the face of a car crash survivor: “And how did you feel when you saw your entire family trapped in your burning car?” I know, I know, that’s unfair and not likely to have actually happened, but too often something only somewhat less sensitive happens. I was leafing through some of my journal entries from years back, almost fifteen years ago, and found this, regarding the tragic deaths of John F. Kennedy jr and his wife and sister-in-law. They were on their way to Hyannis Port and Martha’s Vineyard for one of his cousin’s wedding. He was flying and they were supposed to arrive late in the evening. But they never made it and the plane was missing. “I’m not an insensitive person,” I wrote at that time. “I feel for the death of any person, ‘Any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankind,’ as John Donne put it four centuries ago. But I feel that the news people are a bit ghoulish when it comes to news of important people missing or dying. I could just imagine them this morning when the news first broke about the leading figure in America’s royal family. They must have been washing their hands and nearly salivating over the meal that lay before them. Things to do, old Kennedy film to round up, people to interview, clever commentary to write. So they took over the air for nearly the entire day, hashing and rehashing the same facts and details. They interviewed the JFK biographer, they interviewed Barbara Walters, they had the ABC aviation editor on to tell us all about the kind of plane Kennedy was flying and how it worked and what it looked like and other details we really had no need for. They brought in yards of old Kennedy film, most of which was unrelated to anything except the Kennedy mythology, even that old chestnut when he said, ‘Ask not what your country can do for you.’ We saw several times the footage of JFK jr announcing the start of his magazine George. We watched minute after minute of aerial shots of the open sea out from Martha’s Vineyard. We learned about the locator box designed to be triggered on impact, sending out a signal to rescuers. They went back and forth from one reporter to another, each looking more and more smug as he or she reported his or her particular tidbit of Kennedy lore. It always strikes me that reporters try to report too much. They always claim the public’s right to know. But does the public have to know EVERYTHING about a story? They cover a bloody homicide and go into peripheral detail the public not only doesn’t need to know, doesn’t want to know. They cover a horrific accident and then interview virtually everyone who ever knew anything at all about the victims.” And nothing seems to have changed in these past fifteen years. Same terrible stories, same over-coverage by the news media.

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