From the ashes


Folks have asked me about my weekly column. It hasn’t appeared in The Chatham Daily News for more than a month now. Well, I haven’t been at that newspaper since Nov. 19, when I was laid off.

I wasn’t alone. More than 500 of us were shown the door. Honestly, I think most of us will ultimately be better off. When journalism is no longer a calling but rather a job, something’s wrong.

A reader recently suggested I write a book, compiling my columns over the years. Since my past writings are copyrighted by Sun Media, that won’t be happening. But she did spark me to continue with my writing. Hence the blog.

Throughout my career in newspapers, I wrote a weekly column. I hope to lob up some tidbits daily here. Some will be quite short, while others will be akin to my “Rantings and Rumblings” column that appeared in the paper.

Most will relate to life in Chatham-Kent, a great place to live.

For those of you who don’t know me, I’m the former managing editor of The Chatham Daily News. Held that chair for eight-plus years. Prior to that, I was the paper’s assistant managing editor for a couple of years, and a reporter there for a year before that gig.

My journalism career began in 1988 in Lindsay, ON. For 13 years, my wife and I called that Kawartha Lakes community home. I worked at the local weekly newspaper, then dabbled in radio and finally moved onto the then-daily paper.

But with my wife’s roots here in Chatham, in 2001, we made the move. A year later, we were blessed with the birth of our child. Our roots grew deeper.

We love where we live, with close access to two Great Lakes (yes, I consider Lake St. Clair a Great one, as it’s tied to the system) and our myriad of communities that make up Chatham-Kent. So many differences, yet so many similarities.

Small-town Ontario is the place to be for us.

With London, Windsor, Sarnia and Detroit basically an hour’s drive away, if you want the added variety and experiences of larger centres, they are a short drive away.

Catching opening day for the Tigers was a blast this year. Taking my 10-year-old daughter to Comerica Park in August was particularly sweet, even though her beloved Blue Jays lost. She still believes the best hot dogs in the world are cooked up at Comerica.

Thanksgiving tailgating in downtown Detroit was an experience last month.

I will share my experiences — good and bad — with you. You’ll see humour, political satire, what joys one encounters when living at the speed of a child, etc., etc. It will be a treat to write, and, I hope, to read.

If you have suggestions, please comment. Disagree with something? Comment.

Thanks for taking the time to read.




  1. Bruce/ I’d bet if you had the capitol funding, you could fire up your own newspaper and keep in good competition with the rag that dropped the best person they had working for them. This blog will be a good deal in the mean time. At least you haven’t given up your fire for writing!


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