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, September 12, 2009

A Man Should Never Have to Pay


I'm in the midst of updating a book on football at the local high school so I went to a game last night. I got in free, of course, because I have a deep and abiding hatred of paying to watch anything. I did spend a dime to see my first football game at the same field back in 1936. After that I made a point of finding a fence to climb over or crawl under, anything at all to avoid parting with cash.
As I grew older this seemed a less than dignified way of gaining entry so at the age of 21 I became a sportswriter. This not only got me in free but allowed me to sit in a warm, dry press box on rainy or snowy nights. This caused a bit of friction after Jackie and I were married. She always wanted to go along but had to sit out in the grandstand. Not too bad an arrangement at home games but after leaving the press box at Kokomo or Logansport on a rainy night and finding her dripping wet with an hour or more drive ahead of us showed her in neither her best light nor gracious mood.
Not that being a sportswriter didn't have its down side. When the game ended and others headed for a sandwich at a drive-in or a bit of refreshment at their favorite watering hole, the sportswriter had to go to work. As often as not this was after a long drive home. Being conscientious, or perhaps it was egotistical, I wanted my game story to be better than any other on the sports page. This sometimes meant toiling until one or two in the morning and having to be at my desk again five or six hours later. Still it was better than paying to get in.
Now I get in free at every stadium in the area. That's because I'm old. They just wave octogenarians by at the gate. I'm not sure if this is out of kindness and respect or because they are afraid one of us might drop dead on the spot and hold up others in line. Whatever, I got in free last night but Jackie refused to accompany me unless I took my rollator. A man has his dignity so I will not show up at a football game with a rollator. Having to slip a nitroglycerin tablet under my tongue on the way home was OK because nobody saw me do that. In many ways life was easier as a sportswriter.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Chet Headley said...

Dick, 12 Sep 09

I learned something today, as usually happens, when I read your column. I had never before encountered the term ”rollator.” I realize now that I have been in close proximity to them numerous times without knowing that’s what they are. Thanks for enlightening your fans and me.

Your columns do make me feel better about myself. At times I have felt guilty about some of the things I did when I was young, like sneaking into Falls High games without paying; not any more. I always thought I was the originator of “them there” types of ideas only to learn I was a “Johnny come lately.” Now I’m wondering if I’ve ever done anything original.

Take care,

Chet

10:23 PM  
Blogger Dick Stodghill said...

You have probably been original many times, Chet.

6:36 PM  

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