Local News

There’s a story in the local newspaper about how a Minnesota man who allegedly embezzled $1.38M attended Schenectady (NY) County Community College. It’s always interesting to see how much coverage an item will receive, and part of it is the ability to find the local angle, if any. Most recently, we’ve had the alleged Craiglist killer who attended UAlbany; so instead of the national stories, we get our local “insight.”

Visiting Arthur at AmeriNZ a couple months ago, he noted some North Carolina Republican speaking against the Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009, calling Matthew Shepard’s murder “a hoax”. One commenter said: “Sadly I’m not seeing much coverage of [Virginia] Foxx’s incredible comments in the mainstream media,” but another noted:” “Foxx’s comments are all over the television and radio news, Internet, newspapers, etc. here in NC.” Thus her banality was only newsworthy instate rather than nationally.

Yet the story of the mother kicking her kids out of the car in Westchester County, NY, a story that once upon a time might have been in the local police blotter, stirred up an international debate.

One of the things I’m reminded of every Thanksgiving is that the amount of news that gets reported and printed is only a fraction of the news available. Why Thanksgiving? It’s because our local paper is so thick with stories – to balance the ads sold – that simply would not get reported on any other weekday.

So what’s news? Depends on the purveyor of same. I knew this intellectually, but it’s always nice to confirm.
If David Carradine’s death at age 72 is really a suicide, then I’m truly shocked. A month or two ago, he was profiled on “CBS Sunday Morning” along with Bruce Dern and Rip Torn for a movie they’d made together. The basic point of the story is how full of life the three veteran actors still were. There was zero indication Carradine was anything but happy with where he was in this world.
I saw Koko Taylor perform on the Empire State Plaza in Albany sometime in the late 1990s or early 2000s. She was on the north end of the plaza near the state capitol, and she was very close to the audience. Anyone out there know the year? It was NOT the 2007 show that got driven indoors.

She only had one “hit”, the Top 60 “Wang Dang Doodle” in 1966, but she was a blues force, and I’m sorry that she died at age 80.


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