I can't believe that today's column comes after two years of writing for The Daily Star. It has honestly been a lot of work, but the enjoyment I get from the experience makes it well worthwhile.
I'll try to give it another year if Editor Sam Pollak allows it. He has been true to his word and covered my back, never changed any of the column's content, and I am sure he gets plenty of grief because of it.
More on Sam later.
I can't believe how the paper reaches such a number of readers from all over the United States. My e-mail responses impress the heck out of me. I have heard from people in 38 states (also three foreign countries, Romania, Bulgaria, and the Ukraine, but they probably shouldn't count since I know those individuals personally), totaling 286 responses.
Of these responses, 242 have been positive and 44 negative. The Nov. 11 column alone got 21 responses, 17 for and 4 against.
Among the negatives, some of which seem like threats, I have two special ones. One man loves to send postcards about my column to The Star, which then get forwarded on to me.
I have no idea why he doesn't just send it to me. Maybe he wants a lot of people to read it along the way. I have kept them all and have accumulated quite a few.
My favorite is one on which he has a man with a club about to hit a baby seal. He has circled the man and labeled him "Tom Sears," and the title he gives to the circled baby seal is "The Truth." I got a kick out of that one and that once in a while he expresses his anger quite creatively.
The other is my first and only e-mail stalker. He sent the first one in the middle of September stating a few nasty things and went on to insult the paper by saying "Thankfully, you write for a small-town rag with a very limited circulation."