Thursday, March 30, 2017

Upchuck reading
If you’re thinking about dining out in Summit County, these statistics might interest you:
Summit County food inspectors found violations in a year's time at Belgrade Gardens South in Green (48), Gasoline Alley in Bath Township (48) and On Tap in Stow, Johnny J’s Pub in Coventry Township  (49), Main Street Saloon in Akron (49), Pub Bricco on Merriman Road in Akron (55), Akron’s Saffron Patch (56), Mr. Zub’s Deli on Market Street in Akron (60), D’Angelo’s Italian Place in Coventry (61), Sassy’s Bar and Grille in Twinsburg (61), A Wok in Bath Township (6), Nick's Pizza in Barberton (68), Georgio’s Pizza on West Market (70), Georgie’s Pub on Brittain Road (82), Fiesta Pizza on North Portage Path (94), Liberty Food Center on East Cuyahoga Falls Avenue (123), Georgio’s in Norton (137), and the ewww champ,  El Campesino in Twinsburg (166).

Jane Gaab Scott, John Scott, Dave Scott
Franklin Scott, Natasha Kunin Scott

New title for Dave: Grandpa!

Harriet Scott
Dave Scott, BJ regional issues reporter and deputy Business editor before the April 2014 BJ buyouts exodus, and wife Jane Gaab Scott are grandparents for the first time.

The parents of Harriet Scott are Dave and Jane’s son, Franklin and his wife Natasha Kunin Scott. The girl was born in Oakland, California on March 14.

Since another former Ol’ Blue Walls inhabitant, Webb Shaw, is married to Katie Gaab-Shaw, Jane’s sister, that makes Dave and Webb brothers-in-law. Webb retired in 2014 as Vice President of Editorial Resources at J. J. Keller & Associates in Neenah, Wisconsin.

Dave explains how that came about:

"Jane and I met on a blind date arranged by Webb and Kate Shaw and Rick and Diane Reiff."

Webb confirmed that. He said Dave and Rick worked together at the Norwalk Reflector.

Dave Scott chimed in:

“Rick was at the Reflector. I covered Huron and Erie counties for the Elyria Chronicle Telegram.

“Rick went directly to the Beacon. I worked about two years at the News Herald before going to Akron.”

Rick had a major role in the BJ Pulitzer for Sir Goldsmith's greenmail attack on Goodyear. He is executive editor of the Orange County Business Journal in California. He also had the foresight to push for 401(k) in Guild negotiations. That helped me live a comfortable retirement for 21 years, so far. Thanks, Rick.

Dave and Jane live in Copley. They are new to
this grandparenting gig. I have 7 grandchildren and 2 great-grandsons, all living within 20 miles of my Tallmadge home.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Kaye & Bob Carpenter at their favorite hobby

46th anniversary for Bob & Kaye Carpenter

Kent State graduate and former WKNT news director Bob Carpenter and wife Kaye are celebrating their 46th wedding anniversary today.

They were married in 1971 in Ravenna after Bob’s graduation from Kent State. They live in Punta Gorda, Florida. When they aren’t doing a LOT of cruising … on ships, not circling downtown haunts.

Their son, John Carpenter, is in the movie business in Hollywood.
Bob is an Air Force veteran.
Dawidziak’s take on the ‘wonderous land of imagination’
Mark Dawidziak; another year, another book
The BJ’s Clint O’Connor has an outstanding article about former BJ and current PD pop critic Mark Dawidziak’s latest book, “Everything I Needed to Know I Learned From The Twilight Zone,” the Rod Serling masterpiece.

Mark lives in Cuyahoga Falls with wife Sara and daughter Becky and various animals.
“Twilight Zone” aired from 1959 to 1964, but lives forever in the minds of those who watched the crafty Cincinnatian’s chilling life lessons and took “a journey into the wondrous land of imagination.”

Mark has written or edited 15 books, and is co-writer and co-editor on five others, about everything from “Columbus” to Dracula to Mark Twain, which Mark performs in area venues so well that only Hal Holbrook comes close to hitting the Mark as our Mark.

To read Clint’s article on Mark Dawidziak and the lessons of “The Twilight Zone,” click on 

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Former PD exec Bob Long passes away

Former PD executive VP Bob Long passed away Sunday from idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

He was 73.

He oversaw the 1993 production and distribution center construction and the 2001 downtown offices that opened in 2001.

The Middletown, Ohio native was a Certified Public Accountant.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

President Pinocchio

I found this New York Times op-ed piece most interesting. You know, the “fake news” New York Times.


All the President’s Lies


By David Leonhard, New York Times

The ninth week of Donald Trump’s presidency began with the F.B.I. director calling him a liar.

The director, the very complicated James Comey, didn’t use the L-word in his congressional testimony Monday. Comey serves at the pleasure of the president, after all. But his meaning was clear as could be. Trump has repeatedly accused Barack Obama of wiretapping his phones, and Comey explained there is “no information that supports” the claim.

I’ve previously argued that not every untruth deserves to be branded with the L-word, because it implies intent and somebody can state an untruth without doing so knowingly. George W. Bush didn’t lie when he said Iraq had weapons of mass destruction, and Obama didn’t lie when he said people who liked their current health insurance could keep it. They made careless statements that proved false (and they deserved much of the criticism they got).

But the current president of the United States lies. He lies in ways that no American politician ever has before. He has lied about — among many other things — Obama’s birthplace, John F. Kennedy’s assassination, Sept. 11, the Iraq War, ISIS, NATO, military veterans, Mexican immigrants, Muslim immigrants, anti-Semitic attacks, the unemployment rate, the murder rate, the Electoral College, voter fraud and his groping of women.

He tells so many untruths that it’s time to leave behind the textual parsing over which are unwitting and which are deliberate — as well as the condescending notion that most of Trump’s supporters enjoy his lies.

Trump sets out to deceive people. As he has put it, “I play to people’s fantasies.”

Caveat emptor: When Donald Trump says something happened, it should not change anyone’s estimation of whether the event actually happened. Maybe it did, maybe it didn’t. His claim doesn’t change the odds.

Which brings us to Russia.

Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential campaign was an attack on the United States. It’s the kind of national-security matter that a president and members of Congress swear to treat with utmost seriousness when they take the oath of office. Yet now it has become the subject of an escalating series of lies by the president and the people who work for him.

As Comey was acknowledging on Monday that the F.B.I. was investigating possible collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign, Trump was lying about it. From both his personal Twitter account and the White House account, he told untruths.

A few hours later, his press secretary, Sean Spicer, went before the cameras and lied about the closeness between Trump and various aides who have documented Russian ties. Do you remember Paul Manafort, the chairman of Trump’s campaign, who ran the crucial delegate-counting operation? Spicer said Manafort had a “very limited role” in said campaign.

The big question now is not what Trump and the White House are saying about the Russia story. They will evidently say anything. The questions are what really happened and who can uncover the truth.

The House of Representatives, unfortunately, will not be doing so. I was most saddened during Comey’s testimony not by the White House’s response, which I’ve come to expect, but by the Republican House members questioning him. They are members of a branch of government that the Constitution holds as equal to the presidency, but they acted like Trump staff members, decrying leaks about Russia’s attack rather than the attack itself. The Watergate equivalent is claiming that Deep Throat was worse than Haldeman, Ehrlichman and Nixon.

It fell to Adam Schiff, a Democratic representative from Southern California, to lay out the suspicious ties between Trump and Russia (while also hinting he couldn’t describe some classified details). Schiff did so in a calm, nine-minute monologue that’s worth watching. He walked through pro-Putin payments to Michael Flynn and through another Trump’s aide’s advance notice of John Podesta’s hacked email and through the mysterious struggle over the Republican Party platform on Ukraine.

“Is it possible that all of these events and reports are completely unrelated, and nothing more than an entirely unhappy coincidence? Yes, it is possible,” Schiff said. “But it is also possible, maybe more than possible, that they are not coincidental, not disconnected and not unrelated, and that the Russians used the same techniques to corrupt U.S. persons that they have employed in Europe and elsewhere. We simply don’t know, not yet, and we owe it to the country to find out.”

Comey, as much as liberals may loathe him for his 2016 pre-election bungling, seems to be one of the few public officials with the ability and willingness to pursue the truth. I dearly hope that Republican members of the Senate are patriotic enough to do so as well.

Our president is a liar, and we need to find out how serious his latest lies are.
Dunphy’s next cancer surgery in late April

Former BJ State Desk reporter John Dunphy will delay his latest cancer surgery to late April.

John is more comfortable having Keck Medical at the University of South, which did the original esophageal cancer surgery in 2013, doing the latest surgery.

John and wife of 9 years Rebecca Allen live in Lakewood.

John’s siblings are Steve Dunphy, who lives in Seattle; Harry Dunphy; sister Sister Patricia Dunphy; Maureen Dunphy Welling; Paul Dunphy; Peter Dunphy; Dennis Dunphy; and Christine Dunphy Barnett.  

John is contributing editor at Southland Golf and a former reporter for the Orange County Register in California. John is a Cincinnati Xavier University graduate from New York City.

Rebecca is deputy Features Editor at the OC Register.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Trump would gut America

It turns out that Mexico won’t be paying for Trump’s wall.

The Environmental Protection Agency  would take a 31% reduction under Trump’s proposed budget and make 3,200 people jobless. Goodbye, clean air and water. Hello, McDonald’s job and “do you want fries with that?”

The State Department would lose 29%.  Hello, more Benghazis.

Agriculture and Labor departments each would lose 21%. Who needs food and those annoying unions anyway.

Health and Human Services: 18% cut. Hell, old folks, just die and solve the problem. Plus, with no Meals on Wheels, dying will be easier for the old folks taking up space. Never mind that they won the #1 war in world history. So much for thanking the veterans.

Education Department: 14%. We don’t need no book-learning for the next generation that will be running America. Cuts about $3 billion from teacher training. Who needs teachers who know how to teach?

Housing and Urban Development: 13%. Hey, it’s not that bad living under a bridge in the winter.

Defense Department: UP 9%. Doesn’t sound like much, but its $54 BILLION. A few F-35’s eats it up in a hurry. Drones are cheaper, but why not enrich the military industrial complex that Eisenhower, the general most responsible for winning World War II, warned us about.

Energy Department loses $900 million from the Office of Science. That’s what they get for talking about global warming and the big bang theory.

IRS takes $239 million cut. That’s learn ‘em not to try to make Trump or his billionaire friends pay taxes.

Arts, libraries and PBS would get NOT a penny. A society that shuns culture and learning is a great way to improve America, huh?

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Bob and Cindy Rosen are golden at 50
50th wedding anniversary for the Rosens

Cindy & Bob all smiles
Retired BJ circulation director Bob Rosen and wife Cindy celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in Lynhurst, Ohio.

It took Bob and Cindy only three days to sell their Green home and buy a retirement-sized house only 1½ miles away in Green at 2082 Wise Road.

Their daughter, Wendy, also lives in Green and works at FirstMerit Bank.

Fitting tribute to Doug
BJ Editor Bruce Winges wrote an excellent article about retired Ol’ Blue Walls retired Managing Editor Doug Oplinger, who came to 44 E. Exchange Street as a baby-faced Springfield High senior enamored with John Deere problems and left with 2 of the BJ’s 4  Pulitzers having his fingerprints on them.

Doug Oplinger at his stairway to Heaven
In case you don’t get the BJ, here’s Bruce’s parting gift to Doug:

Managing editor retires after 46 years at Beacon

Award-winning journalist Doug Oplinger thankful for ‘great adventure’

By Bruce Winges


Doug Oplinger, the Beacon Journal’s managing editor, retired Friday after 46 years in journalism.

While many may know Doug and some may not, all of you know his work at the Beacon Journal and Doug has had a

role in stories about:

• The 1986 hostile takeover attempt at Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co.

• The 1993 examination about race relations in Akron.

• Holding Ohio’s charter schools accountable.

Managing editors, well, help manage the newsroom (as much as a newsroom can be managed).

They work closely with the editors and reporters to shape our news report daily and over the long term. They attend meetings, talk to a lot of reporters and editors and speak for the editor when the editor is not around.

Doug is a native of Springfield Township who lives in Green. He attended the University of Akron and got a master’s degree from Northwestern University.

His career at the Beacon Journal started as a part-time reporter on the old State Desk in 1971.

It was a time when the newsroom still was somewhat filled with smoke and editors and reporters could be described as “crusty” because they tended to yell at each other a lot (particularly around deadlines).

Doug became a fulltime Metro reporter in 1976 and eventually landed on the business desk.

Doug often tells the story of a day John S. Knight walked by. Doug mentioned that some of Knight’s business associates were not being forthcoming for a story.

Knight walked off.

Doug later was summoned to Knight’s office. Thinking he was in some sort of trouble, Doug was relieved to find that Knight had called his associates, gotten quotes and was giving them to Doug for the story.

Olesky note: This was typical JSK, the owner of 35 newpapers who remained in his heart a reporter.

In 1986, Doug was business editor when a  corporate raider from England tried to take over Goodyear, one of Akron’s landmark companies. Over several months, the Beacon Journal followed the story as it went from corporate offices to Wall Street to the streets of Akron to the halls of Congress.

Doug was a key editor in this staff-wide effort that led to the Beacon Journal being awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1987.

In 1993, a number of editors and reporters undertook a 15-month project that examined race relations in Akron. Doug organized and ran16 focus groups for the stories. Through this reporting, the Beacon Journal showed a deep racial divide in Akron.

Those stories — which resulted in a presidential visit to Akron to talk about race and the formation of a citizens group to better race relations — brought the Beacon Journal a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service in 1994.

On a statewide level, Doug was involved in telling the story of Ohio’s primary and secondary schools. Through extensive use of data analysis, the Beacon Journal has held Ohio’s charter schools accountable for their academic performance and how our tax dollars are spent. Doug also was the key editor in projects that examined our shrinking

middle class and the lack of civility in our politics.

He most recently led the statewide Your Vote

Ohio project. The Beacon Journal assembled a statewide media coalition to listen to voters through extensive polling so we could tell stories you wanted reported during the 2016 election year. That project just received an honorable mention from Editor &

Publisher magazine as part of its annual stories about newspapers that do it right.

Last May, Doug was inducted into the Ohio Associated Press Media Editors Hall of Fame.

Most importantly, as he went from reporter to various editing jobs and finally managing editor, Doug mentored countless journalists along the way.

Outside the newsroom, Doug and his wife, Diane, have three grown children (one son, two daughters) and are grandparents. Doug is an Eagle Scout, teaches Sunday school and is a recovering Ohio State band parent.

In a note last week about his retirement, Doug said: “I will sorely miss working with you and all the people at John S. Knight’s first newspaper. For 46 years, every day has been intellectually stimulating and rewarding. What we do is integral to the survival of a nation, conceived out of dreams 241 years ago, and

protected as part of our Constitution.


“Thank you so much for allowing me to be a part of this great adventure.”

Bruce Winges is editor of the Akron Beacon Journal/ He may be reached at 330-9963858, bwinges@thebeaconjournal. com or @BruceWingesABJ.

Doug’s new work address:


Friday, March 10, 2017

Tributes to a Deere colleague

Tributes and stories about BJ managing editor Doug Oplinger, who retired today:

“Met Doug Oplinger, ABJ managing editor who retires today, in spring 1972. I was finishing at Kent State and interviewing for part-time ABJ job.
“I was warned by the late Terry Oblander that Doug who was already a part-timer was likely to be testy and surly. He was. He had his white shirt, brief case and pocket protector. He looked 14.
“Oblander said the surliness was because Doug was the only Akron U journalism part-timer hired by the late Pat Englehart at that time on the State Desk. Doug hated it when Kent State journalism students got hired. He took that very personally (at least at first).
“He asked derisively if I even knew where Lakemore was. He was very pleased when I said I had no idea. Despite that introduction, we became friends and co-workers for a long time. Congrats, Dougie.”
"Surly" is not the behavior I ever witnessed from Doug, even when he was Features Editor and I was TV Editor and Travel Editor at Ol' Blue Walls.
“In about 30 days, it will be 30 years since the Pulitzer Prize committee recognized work captained by Doug on coverage of the attempted corporate takeover of Goodyear. The honor was well-deserved. Put your John Deere hat on, Doug. Flaps up.”
“Do I remember Oplinger making a road trip to Colorado for Coors, taking money from all of us to bring back cases in the truck?”
By the way, Paula and I visited Coors in Colorado, and got free samples of seven varities of beer. I was surprised that the state police weren’t waiting on the driveway to the highway to make sobriety checks.
In our case, we use West Virginia University football road games as an excuse to take a 7- to 10-day sightseeing tour in that area. After WVU played Colorado in Boulder we took in several national parks, including Yellowstone, and the free beer samples from Coors.
We also sampled the products at the Guinness plant in Ireland while enjoying a rooftop 360-degree view of Dublin. Not as many samples as from Coors, though.
From Pam McCarthy and Cathy Strong, former State Desk reporters:

Pam, illustrious North Canton Hoover journalism/English teacher: "Wishing you all the best, Doug, in your retirement. Remember when you, Catherine Robinson Strong and I were all newbies. Though I was the newest of the newbies!”

From Massey University professor (in Wellington, New Zealand) Cathy: “Best in your retirement, Doug. I haven't worked with you since 42 years ago but you are in the ‘fond memory’ part of my brain. Have a lovely sendoff.”

From me to Doug, the baby-faced Springfield High student with the John Deere cap who survived the Tasmanian devil, Mogadore’s famous Pat Englehart, while I was assistant State Desk editor:

“Doug, if you want to go to a Mountaineer Field football game, I can arrange it. I have 2 season tickets on the 40. One caveat: You have to join in singing ‘Country Roads’ if WVU wins.”

That got a Facebook “like” from Doug. I’ll take that as a yes from a Buckeyes fan. Have you people check with my people, Doug, and we'll pick a date for this State Desk reunion in Gold and Blue land.

Still later, Doug emailed this to me:


"Thanks for the kind note. We had some great times at the Beacon Journal. The State Desk was a unique place, full of very very odd people who together did incredible work.

"The Beacon Journal marched a long line of wonderful mentors through the newsroom and I learned from every one. So happy I stumbled into William Randolph Hershey.

"Diane and I plan to do some traveling, starting simple for now. I need to get organized for the new venture, then get a passport so we can get serious about seeing the world.

Doug has come a long, long way from Springfield High and his snowstorm scoop for his first BJ byline. Now, Deere boy, get out there and enjoy your retirement as much as I have for 21 years.

Doug’s new work address:

Thursday, March 09, 2017

Also Gerry Smith of Composing
Woody Williams of Mailroom

Oh, Deere, the birth of a fabulous newspaper career

Ken Krause, who went from BJ sports editor to community activist living on Mystic Street in Medford, Massachussetts, tells a great story about how a baby-faced Springfied High student in a John Deere cap became a newspaper legend.

Doug Oplinger
without John Deere cap
Let Ken tell it:
“Doug Oplinger hit the ground running as a Beacon Journal stringer in March 1971, writing several articles about the ousted superintendent of the Springfield Public Schools.

“His first byline appeared on Page A1 on March 9, 1971, above a story co-written with Bill Hershey, who had recruited the then-Springfield High senior at a school board meeting.

“Hershey provided this vignette to Harry Liggett for the ABJ Alums Blog in 2007, after Doug was named managing editor: ‘I was covering a Springfield school board meeting in the fall of 1970 and noticed an earnest young man in the crowd. We introduced ourselves and he said he was a student – Doug Oplinger.

“I think he was monitoring the meeting for some student group. I told him to call me if he was ever at a school board meeting when news broke out and I wasn’t there.

“I don’t remember how many months later it was but during a snowstorm that shut down everything in Akron – at least we thought it did – I got a phone call at my apartment one night. It was Oplinger, reporting that the school board had fired the superintendent during a meeting held during the blizzard. Op, as I recall, got a front page byline the next day and the rest is history.”

Doug began working under the frenetic genius of the State Desk, Pat Englehart, and the curmudgeon with a hidden heart and passion for journalism Harry Liggett.

Tomorrow – Friday, March 10 – Doug will retire from Ol’ Blue Walls with the title of managing editor.
Pat, Harry and “Go to hell” Fran are beaming down on Doug. So am I, but I’m not in the Great Beyond … yet.
Well done, Doug. A tip of the John Deere cap to you.

Lynne Sherwin added:

We will gather at the Barley House Friday after 5 p.m. for a proper Beacon Journal sendoff for Doug. Company farewell is at 4 p.m. in the northeast corner.”