Dogged Determination: Guinness World Records Attempt at Largest Dog Wedding Ceremony

Four weeks ago, after a four-week organizational sprint, the Villa Park Community F.U.N. Commission tried to shatter the Guinness World Records title for the largest dog wedding ceremony. Though the effort fell short, between the encouraging local, national and international media coverage along the way, the lessons that organizers learned in the process and the […]

White Sox Coverage Rekindles Long-Dormant Sportswriting Passion

If you’d told me a month ago that I’d be covering a couple of the White Sox-Red Sox games at Guaranteed Rate Field, I’d have responded, “Yeah…and Leury Garcia will command one of the headlines with a walk-off home run.” Yet, there it is (below), my September 13th story in the Daily Herald on the […]

At the Heart of Field of Dreams’ Allure: Relationships

My relationship with baseball goes back 46 years—my first memories are of the 1975 World Series between my hometown Boston Red Sox and the Cincinnati Reds. My relationship with the Field of Dreams goes back 32 years, when I saw the movie by that name when it came out. The film evokes so much for […]

Huppke column shows how easy it is for us all to spend Branson, Bezos money

“Let’s guilt Branson, Bezos and space tourists into making charitable donations before they leave Earth.” That was the headline of a recent column by Rex Huppke of the Chicago Tribune. In the piece, he sets forth a popular perspective: as the uber-wealthy Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson spend gobs of money on space travel, they […]

`Compoundings’ Magazine Story: Inspiration on Top of Information

One of the perks of being a story-teller is the continual education that it provides. Over the past year, that has included writing for publications for trade associations such as the American Resort Development Association (ARDA) and the Independent Lubricant Manufacturers Association (ILMA). Recent case in point: writing for the June issue of Compoundings, ILMA’s magazine. […]

Juneteenth Celebration at DuSable Museum Marks (Incomplete) Progress

Progress in combating systemic racism has been made, but so much more work remains. That was the overarching perspective of roughly a dozen speakers this past Saturday at the Juneteenth Celebration and Reopening of the DuSable Museum of African American History on Chicago’s South Side. Due to the pandemic, the 60-year-old museum had been closed […]

Journalism, PR & the First Rough Draft of History

One of my favorite aphorisms about journalism is that it’s the first rough draft of history. True enough. Sometimes, though, it proves to be the only history, especially for local news of lesser import. And as for those stories that have follow-ups over time, the term “rough draft” may suggest that debut stories have a […]

Jussie Smollett not the first–or last–to employ race-hustling tactics

Sadly, race hustling, affinity hustling and identity hustling of all kinds are alive and well. It’s vital to be on the look-out for them, and for the ‘enemies from within’ who perpetuate them.

Dustin Pedroia Gave Baseball His All

It’s cliched, but with Dustin Pedroia, it’s absolutely apt: he gave it everything that he had. Often, that was considerable. A Most Valuable Player Award in his second full season, 2008, which came on the heels of his Rookie of the Year campaign. And then there are the four Gold Gloves, his four All-Star game […]

Trump’s shameful legacy of lies

Last year, in my “Go Figure: Making Numbers Count” numeracy programs, I focused on the 2020 U.S. Presidential campaign. Anchoring the session each time was my “GOlympics” quiz, in which each letter (G-O-L-Y…etc) covers a mathematical principle that intersects with the art of story-telling. One of those queries: “Since Donald Trump became President, the Washington […]