- Big Chuck
- Monday, April 11, 2011
I Was Just Thinking: 'Mercury Seven' took me to infinity ... and beyond
Almost exactly 52 years ago today, April 9, 1959, seven men were ushered into a room filled with TV cameras and introduced to a waiting world. I was 11 years old. These guys became my boyhood heroes.
- Monday, March 28, 2011
I Was Just Thinking: Even new vacuum cleaners can still be fixed
I recently found my mother's old vacuum cleaner. The real old one. It's an unwieldy monstrosity. On the side it says "Electrolux Canister." It was 1950s gun-metal gray, making it look like an Army poison-gas container. It had rubber wheels and a hose that did not detach. Inside was a "collection bag" that looked like an aging windsock at a long-forgotten rural airport.
- Monday, March 14, 2011
I Was Just Thinking: Schoharie 'savior' is area's own Dr. Dolittle
They called sharpshooter Tim Murphy the "Savior of Schoharie." Well, I'd like to submit the name Wes Laraway for the modern-day version of that title.
Savior, maybe. But don't call Wes a saint.
- Monday, February 28, 2011
I Was Just Thinking: A Dick Tracy watch and the Pope at the fair
I always wanted a Dick Tracy watch. You know, the kind you can use to communicate with people. When the World's Fair first came to New York City in 1939 ("The World of Tomorrow"), Dick Tracy watches were all the futuristic rage. Alas, they never came to be.
- Monday, February 14, 2011
I Was Just Thinking: It starts with the parks, of which Oneonta has many
I read recently that New York City banned smoking in all of its 1,705 city parks. Now, the Big Apple can do whatever it wants with its parks, but to me the factoid that leaped out of that statement was that there are 1,705 parks in New York City in the first place.
- Monday, January 31, 2011
I Was Just Thinking: Readers weigh in with tips, quips and thank-yous
As promised, every six months I'd like to share some thoughts from the old e-mail bag. I encourage you to drop me a note and let me know if a certain column resonates with you.
- Monday, January 17, 2011
I Was Just Thinking: Gone, but not forgotten, Boomer icons
Here's a real stunner. As of this week, and for many years to come, 10,000 baby boomers a day will turn 65 years old.
- Monday, January 3, 2011
I Was Just Thinking: Yager Museum a treasure trove of history and art
So, what does the brown sign out on I-88 reading "Yager Museum" mean anyway? Who was Yager? What kind of a museum is it? Why, once you have followed the brown sign off the highway, do you find yourself wandering around looking for it?
- Monday, December 20, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Letters still good way to send very best
I recently received a very nice letter from a very old friend of mine. His name is William K. Davis. Long before Bill became one of the icons of the automobile industry in our region, he was just a friendly guy on my paper route when I was a kid. Bill and Alma Davis went to school with my parents in the 1940s, so I guess I've known him almost my whole life.
- Monday, December 6, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Beekman Boys make Sharon Springs fabulous destination
Hope springs eternal in Sharon Springs! And that hope isn't coming out of the springs, either. This old Route 20 community, once famed for its sprawling Borscht Belt-like hotels (mostly shuttered now) and its internationally known healing mineral springs (closed since 2005) is showing a robust turn for the better in recent months.
- Monday, November 22, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: SMART Boards are a step up from typewriters
Recently on my radio show I was musing about the old days when I was in school, and all of the technological advances that are available to kids in classrooms today.
- Monday, November 8, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Hollywood rugged leading man came to Bresee's
How many remember actor Robert Taylor? This famous movie star from the 1940s and 1950s defined the word "rugged." Jet-black hair, slicked back and perfectly trimmed. Coal-black eyes. Square, muscular shoulders.
- Monday, October 25, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Autumn: 'The Most Wonderful Time of the Year'
Andy Williams likes to sing, "It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year." Except he is usually referring to the tsunami of commercialism and sub-freezing temperatures that herald the December holiday season. As for me, I sing that phrase from the first day of October to the final day of the month.
- Monday, October 11, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: A raffled quilt, as luck would have it
I'm not a very lucky guy. But things do change. Since 1968, I can remember winning only two contests. One based on naked talent, and one based on dumb luck.
- Monday, September 27, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Talking politics, big and small, new and old
Doing a column twice a month allows me to cover a wide variety of musings. Let's call this one my "Political Column." Poor Gov. David Paterson. He rose to the top on the heels of a governor who was elected as a "White Knight" and then left office as fast as a snake-oil salesman who gets caught with the farmer's daughter.
- Monday, September 13, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Oneonta buses offer tribute to Insetta’s legacy
Last Friday afternoon, my wife and I were walking in front of the Huntington Library. It was 88 degrees by the NBT clock/thermometer. All of a sudden a young man burst by us running as fast as he could. His shirttails were flailing along behind him, beads of sweat ran down his red face and his armload of books was jostling around so they were on the brink of ending up on the sidewalk. He was waving his right hand furiously. It took me a moment to realize the object of this frantic pageant playing out before my eyes.
- Monday, August 30, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Area had its fair share of female 'crack makers'
After her campaign for president, Hillary Clinton was famous for saying that, although she didn't win, she "helped put 18 million cracks in the glass ceiling." Let's talk about three "crack makers" in our own area. Two are gone, but one is very much still with us.
- Monday, August 16, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Upcoming show will connect me with my grandma
I have been thinking about my grandmother a lot lately. The one I never knew. Her name was Sarah Day D'Imperio, and she married my grandfather a century ago. She was a Unadilla girl. Old-timers, and they get fewer and fewer as the tempus fugit, remember her as the prettiest girl in town. I can vouch for this, because of the one or two hand-tinted old portraits I have seen of her.
- Monday, August 2, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Dads are doomed when daughters become brides
Stop the presses. All is good in the world. The gusher of oil polluting the Gulf of Mexico has been stanched (for the time being), unemployment is down to 9.5 from 10.2 percent (still awful), Spain has just banned bullfighting (at least in Catalonia), Betty White is still everybody's sweetheart and Chelsea Clinton is now (finally) Mrs. Chelsea Mezvinsky.
- Monday, July 19, 2010
I Was Just Thinking: Searching for a brand that fits the community
Saddle up, pardner. It's branding time at the ol' Oneonta corral! On Aug. 5, a new branding logo will be revealed to all at a special ceremony at the Oneonta Theatre. Branding is the idea that a community should have a slogan, logo or saying that is concise, sharp and so focused so that the image of the community comes immediately to mind.