Stodghill Says So

An opinionated posting on a variety of subjects by a former newspaper reporter and columnist whose daily column was named best in Indiana by UPI. The Blog title is that used in his high school sports predictions for the Muncie Evening Press.

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Location: Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, United States

At the age of 18 I was a 4th Infantry Division rifleman in the invasion of Normandy, then later was called back for the Korean War. Put in a couple of years as a Pinkerton detective. Much of my life was spent as a newspaper reporter, sports writer and daily columnist. Published three books on high school sports in Ohio and Indiana. I write mystery fiction for Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine and others. Three books, Normandy 1944 - A Young Rifleman's War, The Hoosier Hot Shots, and From Devout Catholic to Communist Agitator are now available from Amazon, Barnes & Noble and other booksellers. So are four collections of short mysteries: Jack Eddy Stories Volumes 1 and 2, Midland Murders, and The Rough Old Stuff From Mike Shayne Mystery Magazine.

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Saturday, January 13, 2007

Does Anyone Know the Answers?

Why do they call the Boston Celtics basketball team the SELL-tics when the word is pronounced KELL-tics?
Why isn't something done about the fact that 90,000 Americans die every year as the result of being confined in dirty hospitals?
Why do some people continue to believe that global warming is just a normal cyclic change when most scientists say otherwise?
Why do people searching for a nice climate for their retirement move to Florida rather than the San Diego area?
Why don't Americans object to the loss of so many freedoms compared with . . . oh, say 1946?
Why at a time when so many people claim to be religious have morals in this country sunk to such a low level?
Just for example, a gracious lady sent me an e-mail comparing the Oscar winning songs of 1936 and 2006. Boy, have we come a long way in 70 years. In 1936 the winner was "The Way You Look Tonight." Fred Astaire sang it to Ginger Rogers in the movie "Swingtime." Even many callow youths have heard the tender melody and those moving words: "Sometime when I'm awfully low, and the world is cold, I will feel a glow just thinking of you, and the way you look tonight. . ."
Just reading the words, can't you hear the music in your mind?
The audiences in 1936 consisted of genuinely tough men and sturdy women. They had to be after six or seven years of struggling to survive the Great Depression. No swaggering, no tough, boisterous talk, just an appreciation for what little they had and an inner strength resulting from hardscrabble living. Fred and Ginger let them escape the grim reality of what awaited for so many once they left the theater, made them feel good about life again.
Now fast forward to 2006. No more Great Depression. Luxuries enjoyed by the majority of Americans that were undreamed of when Fred was singing those gentle words. So what upbeat, joyous song were the movie audiences applauding the most?
How about "It's Hard Out Here For a Pimp."
No need to print the words. Among them are just about every four-letter word you ever heard. A woman is a bitch. Nothing about that will make you feel a glow. Nothing about it will bring Ginger Rogers to mind. It's sick and it's symptomatic of a society that somehow has gone terribly wrong during the course of those 70 years.
Why? That's the biggest question of all. Why, when life is so much easier, when people have so much more?
Maybe that's the answer. Maybe what this country needs is another Great Depression. It might instill some old fashioned, down to earth values that seem to be a part of having to struggle just to survive, that make it hard out there for everyone, not just a pimp.


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