GREENE COUNTY — I’ve been sitting here intentionally looking for news on the Coronavirus, just to keep me from writing this column. That’s how difficult this one is to write.
It’s been said that Love makes you do crazy things.
Well, that would make me crazy then.
Today is my last day working as the Sports Editor for three tiny newspapers that I’ve proudly called my own.
It’s not because I had any dislike for the company — Civitas Media, and later AIM Media Midwest, brought me aboard after I’d been unceremoniously downsized out of a better paying journalism job, and I’ll be forever grateful that they did.
And it’s not because of this damn virus or any health issues on my part. (Well, mental issues maybe.)
But the reason is that I’ve fallen in love with this amazing lady, who just happens to live in a small suburb of St. Louis.
She and I plan on making a cookbook together. That should keep me quite busy, at least in the onset of this bold move I’m about to make.
My girlfriend, Patty, has a short-term memory issue. She’s an amazing cook, but can’t remember the ingredients she uses or the last time she’d made the dish.
Sometimes a dish will bring a good feeling to her, and so she’ll decide to make that meal.
We made butternut squash soup together for one of our first dates. That experience left such a good feeling with her, that at one point after I’d returned to Ohio, she had THREE batches of butternut squash soup in her freezer.
She kept making it because it made her feel happy.
Because I made her feel happy.
So I’ll be the soup police!
She’ll cook. I’ll be there writing it all down, shooting studio photos of the finished work, and making sure that the ingredients have specific amounts next to them.
I’ll be adding various vignettes as well, stories that will recall how she and I met, and will detail some bizarre food-related dates we’ve enjoyed in the past year. For instance, we were judges for the St. Louis Grilled Cheese Off last fall, and could hardly move after each of the seven competing restaurants offered full-sized samples of their entries.
She’s designated me as her “lab rat” as well. I’ll recreate the recipes after we write them down, to ensure that they’re “safe” for consumption.
Her brother came up with the perfect name for the book: “Unforgettable Recipes.”
I also have some freelancing work lined up with a growing volleyball recruiting online magazine called Prep Dig. I’ll scour the St. Louis-area for volleyball talent, write up a story, and get the kids recruited all over the planet. But like everything else on the planet, there’s no volleyball going on these days … because of the stupid virus.
While I’ll remain a Reds fan, there’s even a possibility that I may do seasonal work in the media pressroom for the St. Louis Cardinals baseball organization. … after the virus lifts.
So I’m leaving a job I very much love, for a woman I’m very much in love with.
Sports in the Greene County area was always a joy for me to cover. I always had a fair shake from the coaches and players I’d worked with, and I hope you feel that I was always fair with you.
A few of you are already buds with me on Facebook, and I’ll do my best to stay in touch. The rest of you are welcome to “friend” me on there, I would gladly keep in touch with you as well.
I always tried to do my best to stay professionally distant from coaches and staff, in order to remain neutral in my coverage of your teams. I hope that each of you feel that I did that, for it was my goal in every story.
According to my boss, I might be able to continue providing my baseball and softball game simulations to the papers on a freelancing basis. I hope so, I still have 89 games yet to play!
So thank you, Greene County, for seven wonderful years of covering your sports teams. I’ll always look back on my days here with fondness.
I’ll truly miss you.