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Old journal entries - 2001
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WELCOME
Live free or die. July 25, 2001 - I hope you like the new design of my home page. I deleted the old "links" page, and now many of the popular parts of this site are only one click away. As always, feel free to E-mail me with your feedback.

It's a long, hot summer in New Hampshire. Regretably, I doubt I'll see a New England winter this year. I've resigned from my newspaper reporting job in Laconia in search of greener pastures. Perhaps back south? We'll see. Wherever my travels take me, you can always track me down through this web site. - Daryl


WELCOME
Hundreds of Collisions! August 5, 2001 - Enjoying my last few days in New Hampshire, I spent yesterday on a wild moose chase. I took my car to Pittsburg, the northermost town in the state, and puttered around looking for a moose. I saw some tracks. And some ducks. And mosquitos. At least I avoided being one of the "hundreds of collisions." Luckily, jobs are easier to find than moose. I'm looking at options in Maryland and Pennsylvania. That will return me closer to the Mason Dixon Line than to the 45th parallel. Stay tuned.

I hope you enjoy exploring my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
Carlisle map August 11, 2001 - It's time for another new adventure. Today, I accepted a news reporting job at The Sentinel in Carlisle, Pa. I will start later in August. As soon as I know my new address and phone numbers, I'll post them on this page. Stay tuned.

I hope you enjoy exploring my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
A Street August 20, 2001 - Hello Carlisle. My new job at The Sentinel starts next Monday. I've just moved into a new place (the second floor of the tan building in the photo) and I'm slowly getting to know the town. So far as I can tell, Carlisle is famous for five things: Jim Thorpe, Molly Pitcher, car shows, Dickinson College and the U.S. Army War College. Well, six things if you count the Washington Redskins' training camp. And maybe seven if you include The Sentinel, "Pennsylvania's best daily newspaper." I think I'm going to like it here.

I hope you enjoy exploring my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
August 27, 2001 - Today was my first day of work at my new job. Of course, you want to read my first news story, yes? It's a tale of danger, mystery, nakedness and Sheetz. Better still, it's really short. Click here. In addition to my occasional early-morning police log duties, I will be covering two school districts and one township government.

I hope you enjoy exploring my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
September 2, 2001 - One of my Sentinel stories this week involved the fellow you see at the right. He stands in front of the Cumberland Goodwill Fire Department in Carlisle. It turns out this same firefighter is a rather celebrated figure in several small towns. Check out these links to pictures of the same statue in Carlisle, Penn., Slatington, Penn., Ottawa, Ohio and Owego, N.Y. There are some slight differences in the statues, such as whether the fireman is wearing a mustache. Carlisle's has an interesting base that used to be a three-level drinking fountain - for people, horses and dogs.

I hope to be able to link to some of my newspaper stories in the future, as technology allows. In the mean time, I hope you enjoy exploring my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
Overlook of Carlisle September 6, 2001 - Carlisle, Pennsylvania has the nicest weather of any place I've ever been. That statement is based on more than two weeks of careful observation. Since I moved here in August, we have yet to have a rainy day. Not hot. Not chilly. The air has been fabulously clear, even down here in the valley. I'm lucky that my reporting job often takes me out of the office, but sometimes I wish I had pursued a career in professional outdoor lounging. Better still, I could get rich and retire simply by inventing a way to bottle a little bit of September and store it until the end of February. Until then, I'll just enjoy the sunshine and respect the fire ban.

I hope you enjoy exploring my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
September 11, 2001 - I was dispatched to our local military base, the Carlisle Barracks, to do some disaster reaction interviews Tuesday morning. I checked in with my editors and learned that The Sentinel was printing a special morning edition. My brother called on me from Virginia at 11:40. He wanted to know if I was near the plane crash in Somerset County, I said no. We talked about how people were reacting. Everyone was upset, but rational, as if watching a disturbing movie. It hadn't sunk in yet. I told my brother that this was clearly the most important news event to happen in our lifetimes. But it didn't feel like it then and it doesn't feel like it now, even after filling a notebook with quotes from stupified television watchers. One thing is certain: The summer of the sharks is over.

I hope you enjoy exploring my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
September 13, 2001 - It's been almost three days since the attack on the United States and perspective continues to fail. Clocks still run, geese still fly and cranky old people still show up at city council meetings to complain about road paving. We're not rationing fruit or stamping pennies out of steel. I feel like nothing has changed in Carlisle, since we're safe in the mountains, 100 miles from the nearest respectable airport. Even living near Gettysburg, I'm reminded that Tuesday was far from the darkest day we've had here. Tugging the other way, I know it's still the most violent day of my lifetime. Even though my friends and family are safe, we all feel for those lost. But lately I've been so programmed for selfishness and independence that I just can't digest this situation. Will more people die? Will there be Hershey bars left in the work snack machine tomorrow? Will we go to war? Will I have time to go to the farmers' market Saturday? Times are bad, but life seems as banal as ever. I can find no appropriate way to react.

I hope you find my web site a comforting distraction. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


GOD BLESS AMERICA
September 14, 2001 - We have seen the return of patriotic songs. After the attack Tuesday, Congress returned to the Capitol for a chorus of "God Bless America." (I had no luck finding a recording of this to post on my home page. CNN seems to have a video of it, and it won't play on my old computer.) Another song I've been hearing often is "America the Beautiful," which has been popular at prayer services. Ray Charles has one of the most famous recordings of that song. Interestingly, our national anthem has been less conspicuous. I think there are two reasons for this. First, the song is worn out from being performed at the beginning of every sporting event. It reminds us all of baseball games. Secondly, it's hard to sing and hard to understand ("O're the rockets' red glare," etc.).

I hope you find my web site a comforting distraction. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


GOD BLESS AMERICA
September 15, 2001 - Two weeks ago, I visited an elementary school for a newspaper assignment. As I walked in, students were gathered around the P.A. system to lead the school in the Star Spangled Banner. I paused in the hallway until the song was finished. A secretary who saw me from the office remarked at how nice it was that I waited for the anthem. I smiled. "It's a reflex leftover from when I was in elementary school," I said.

What would I say now? Now we have seen meaning restored to our patriotic songs? After the attack Tuesday, Congress returned to the Capitol for a remarkable chorus of "God Bless America." (I had no luck finding a recording of this to post on my home page. CNN seems to have a video of it.) Another song I've been hearing often is "America the Beautiful," which has been popular at prayer services. Our national anthem has been less conspicuous. I think perhaps it's been worn out; we associate it with baseball games. These songs have been with us, playing softly in the background somewhere, throughout our lives. Now that we need them, they play a little louder.

I hope you find my web site a comforting distraction. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


GOD BLESS AMERICA
September 21, 2001 - Sept. 21, 2001 - On assignment today, I found myself at a high school study hall table with six students. One boy was from India. Another boy was from Pakistan. There were four American students, two black and two white. And me. The Asian students were outgoing and had introduced themselves to me earlier. "Is reporting fun?" one asked. "Yes. It's a good job," I said. New to the school, the Asian students didn't know the others at the table.

They talked about music. "Have you heard of Jay-Z?" asked one American girl. "No, I don't," said the boy from India. "But I know of an American group called An-sync. Something like that? They play them in India and Pakistan." Surprised that the Asian students didn't know their music, the American kids smiled. They simply hadn't learned to think about kids growing up in other cultures.

Worldliness is far more important today than it was on Sept. 10. I have long thought the biggest missing piece in my education is international perspective. Now that I've taken the chance to travel a little, I have been shocked to find that (a) the rest of the world is obsessed with the United States, and (b) the United States is obsessed with the United States. This should not have shocked me. I wish I knew more about the world. And I have a creepy feeling that most Americans know far too little.

I hope you find my web site a comforting distraction. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
September 26, 2001 - Some people post poetry on their web sites. If I were a poet, I'd write about autumn, and it would go something like this: "Under a high, grey sky/ leaves rustle, sticks crack/ frigid air ruffles my sleeve/ somehow making me feel warm/ Gracious sakes I can't WAIT until it snows!"

Yeah, so that's pretty bad. Leaving the poems to the pros, here is my instant recipe for a cozy fall evening in a safe place: A mug of green tea, a box of ginger snaps, a candle or two, and Dar Williams' "Out There Live" playing on a stereo.

I hope you find my web site a comforting distraction. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
October 1, 2001 - I got a library card last week and checked out Tom Brokaw's "The Greatest Generation." It's the book about the generation that grew up during the Great Depression and fought World War II. I'd heard a few people talking about this book following the terrorism.

As I try to educate myself about World War II (a chapter we skipped in high school American history), I'm convinced it is wrong to compare it to our current "war" on terrorism. But I'm intrigued by the idea that a big event, like a World War, can define an entire generation.

An older editor recently asked another young reporter and I if we are "Generation Y". We paused and decided we aren't. Although I like to joke that everyone my age (21) is either married or in jail, that's not really true. People my age just don't have a definition. No, not MTV, not the Internet, not anything really interesting. The line I like the most is this one: We're the generation that did what our parents asked us to do. Maybe that's why our music is so bad.

I hope you find my web site a comforting distraction. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


WELCOME
October 11, 2001 - Some assorted thoughts for mid-October:
  • It's nice to feel good about America right now. It seems natural to feel that way.
  • West Palm Beach, Fla., has got to be the nuttiest place. I can't believe how much weird stuff happens there.
  • We're air-dropping food for the people of Afghanistan, which is so bafflingly nice it makes me smile. I think we should also send some good-quality microphones, cables, mixers and mult boxes. The people in charge there have just awful audio equipment. Especially bin Laden.
  • The new name is Operation Enduring Freedom. The problem with this name is that it leads to the question, "Who is enduring this freedom, them or us?" I heard a better name suggested on a public radio program: Operation Trash bin.
  • I think people are going to start more sentences with "Make no mistake about it..."
  • I just updated my contact information to reflect my new cell number. I also added a new clip to my Clips page.

    I hope you find my web site a comforting distraction. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


    WELCOME
    Overlook of Carlisle October 19, 2001 - I took this picture on Tuesday at King's Gap, just outside of Carlisle. King's Gap is one of the places on the Fall in PA web site, which lures people to Pennsylvania to see our trees turn orange. It's nice that such a peaceful turn of nature can be a tourist attraction. Sure, maybe more people come here for Hershey Park, but they can't get there without driving by our forests. Curiously, I learned this week that emergency planners consider Hershey Park the mid-state's most likely target for a terrorist attack -- apparently even more so than Three Mile Island. Sound like another reason to seek sanctuary in the woods.

    You can click on the deer to download a wallpaper-sized version of the photo.

    I hope you find my web site a comforting distraction. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


    WELCOME
    October 25, 2001 - As a reporter, every now and then I learn something I'd rather not know. This week, I learned that a baby was scalded to death in my bathtub. Her name was Heather Johnson, age 18 months, and she fell into a tub of hot water at here in apartment 3 on March 11, 1996. She died 20 days later in a hospital in Philadelphia from the burns. Her mother was indicted for third-degree murder, but a jury later acquitted her. Blood on the tub was used as evidence. During the trial, as reported in The Sentinel in 1997, prosecutors played a recording of the mother's 911 phone call. "My daughter, she's badly burned," she told the dispatcher. "It's really red, it's bleeding and her skin is like falling off." Such a story makes me less drawn to Halloween ghost stories.

    I hope you enjoy my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


    WELCOME
    Dingmans Falls November 2, 2001 - Happy November. Here's a mini travel item: Consider a day trip to Dingmans Falls, the tallest waterfall in Pennsylvania. From the Harrisburg area, I took Route 78 east past an amazing time-warp town called Shartlesville. Shartlesville is home to a giant train set called Roadside America (admission: $4.50) and numerous mockeries of Pennsylvania Dutch culture in the form of trinket shops and motels. Past Allentown, I turned north to the Poconos. North of I-80, I stopped at the biggest flea market I've ever seen. There was nothing of value for sale, but it was fun to peruse the junk merchandise imported from New York City. It began to sleet, but signs declared the market open year-round, rain or shine, and that proved true. Past various Poconos resorts, the traffic thins at the entrance to Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area. Twelve miles in, a sign points to Dingmans Falls. There is a beautiful boardwalk trail leading a half mile to the falls, deep under a canopy of trees. Spending about 30 minutes there on a nice Saturday afternoon, I saw maybe 20 people tops. I can imagine it would be a spectacular sight during the spring thaw. My photos don't do it justice, but you can click on the image at left for a wallpaper-sized picture.

    I hope you enjoy my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


    WELCOME
    November 10, 2001 - Happy Veterans Day.

    I miss the World Trade Center. I'm not talking about the people who were in it -- that's too much for this web site to address. I'm talking about the building itself. It was a charmless, industrial monolith (duolith?) that symbolized money and materialism. But we all want it back, don't we? I've been thinking lately about things that aren't really great, but that we would miss if they were gone. America is built on such things. Some of them are downright mundane -- paper clips, shopping carts, bubble gum. Some of them add background noise to our lives -- Alan Jackson, USA Today, Hulk Hogan. Some of them we only notice when we compare them to something better -- Hydrox cookies, 7-Up, the Minnesota Twins. These things are the ketchup on our lives. We should cherish their reliable mediocrity.

    I hope you enjoy my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


    WELCOME
    Nov. 16, 2001 - Thanksgiving is early this year, but I'll take it. It's a good day for us Americans. This is perhaps the one holiday on our calendar that has universal acceptance and no controversy. It's a bad day for the turkeys, but they don't have a web site yet to complain.

    I hope you enjoy my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


    WELCOME
    Nov. 28, 2001 - I just got a new computer, which has inspired me to make some additions to my web site. For now, however, I'm learning how to use the thing and re-installing all my old programs. Once I get it all figured out, I'll be back to the routine of updating the site on a regular basis. I'll also add some fun new things, with whatever gee-whiz special effects I can teach myself.

    I hope you enjoy my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


    WELCOME
    Dec. 17, 2001 - Sorry for the lack of updates on this web site. I've been having too much fun tinkering with my new computer and been just plain lazy. New and great things are on the way, for sure.

    One observation: Ever since Sept. 11, I've noticed the days have been getting shorter.

    I hope you enjoy my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


    WELCOME
    Dec. 20, 2001 - At Christmas time, here is a nice link for music listeners. Francis, a guy I work with, runs a site called Mistletunes that indexes all sorts of rock Christmas songs. Curious about the dogs who sing Jingle Bells? They're here. So are notes about holiday songs from Al Green, Lynyrd Skynard, Rockapella and Cyndi Lauper. There's a whole section called Punk Rock Xmas. And yes, there was a Max Headroom Christmas album.

    Best wishes for a good holiday and a peaceful 2002.

    I hope you enjoy my web site. Feel free to e-mail me with your feedback. - Daryl


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