Sunday, June 23, 2024

Andy's Angles: The Cathedral


 I try to keep this blog religion-free because it is such a personal thing.  Today's photo is about the sunshine and the architecture more than anything else.

Take a look at St. Peter's Cathedral on Wyoming Avenue in Scranton.

Yeah, the wires take away from the shot, but you have to play the cards you're dealt.

Saturday, June 22, 2024

Andy's Angles: The Pocket Park

 

This project has been stuck in my craw for a long time.  It's the new pocket park at Linden and Wyoming in downtown Scranton.

It was expensive, and it took years to accomplish, but it is a nice little space.  Back in the shadow of the federal building is a little performance area.

Yes, a taxable building here would have ben nice, but the park really isn't so bad.



Friday, June 21, 2024

Coming Home to Roost

 

The headlines have been filled with money problems at colleges and universities in our area and across the state.  There are consolidations and cutbacks.  A couple of institutions were in danger of closing altogether.  Some, elsewhere in the state, have shut down.

Even with grants and loans, paying for a college education isn't easy.  I was lucky.  It didn't cost a huge amount in my day.  I think my four years at Marywood cost about $ 12,000.  Yes, pricey at the time but a tremendous bargain now.

Here is my point.  Many businesses, including the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania State Police no longer require a college degree.  Yes, it does get more people in to the work force, but who is going to pay the piper for that?  The answer, colleges and universities.

I will concede that many institutions of higher learning didn't pay enough attention to demographic and economic trends.  They are pricing themselves out of existence.  They built too much, too fast.  They didn't adapt to the times and the needs of the economy.

Those were the days, my friend.  We'd thought they'd never end.

Thursday, June 20, 2024

Summer

 

Today is the first day of summer, and one of the days with the most daylight.

After a few stable days, the sun sets a little earlier, rises a little later.

As a kid, that always blew my mind.  Hey, I just got out of school and summer is here.  The days shouldn't be getting shorter!

Making it even tougher on the young ones these days, is the fact that "back to school" sales begin right after Independence Day.

Working early mornings and overnights changes your perspective.  Heat and light are not your friends, even if you combat the duo with dark curtains and a big air conditioner.  It's always odd getting in the car to come to work, and there is still a trace of evening twilight.  But, this is the business we have chosen.

If you love summer, rejoice!

I'll feel better after Labor Day.

Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Wednesday Scrapple

 

You don't know pain until you've dropped a combination lock on to your toe in a gym locker room.

Any network television job used to be the gravy train with biscuit wheels.  Times have changed.  NBC is dumping the band on "Late Night" to save money.

Howard Fineman died last week.  Cancer.  75.  Fineman, a Washington writer, was a fixture on the Sunday morning TV talk shows.  There were occasional visits to Tony Kornheiser's podcasts.  He explained politics in a human way, understandable, and I'm very sorry he is gone.

I'm not a basketball fan, but everyone knew who Jerry West was-- a huge basketball star.  West died last week, leaving a major imprint on the game.

There is a dust up over participants in the Independence Day hot dog eating contest.  I don't care.  Competitive eating is disgusting, and I even found those old "Man Vs Food" shows to be revolting.

FOX grabbed Indy Car racing away from NBC.  Except for golf, FOX has done a good job with all of its sports properties.

It goes without saying.  I can do without a heat wave.

Mixed feeling on the addition of beer to the Bloomsburg Fair.  In a similar vein, it seems every mini mart sells alcohol now, so when it really comes down to it, it's not that big of a deal.

Maybe, some day, I'll really try scrapple.

Wawa and Sheetz are in the midst of expansion, and that triggers the argument over what chain is better.  They are both fine, in their own way.

Why are decisions that used to be so easy, suddenly difficult?

For a reason that cannot be explained, the hits on the blog entry with the photo of the federal building in Scranton went through the roof.

Many of its stories are now behind a pay wall, but USA Today is still a fun web site to visit.

One of my favorite things to say has become "Alexa, play Sirius/XM Seventies on Seven."

The "Raising Cane" fast food chicken finger chain is now in the Lehigh Valley.  Keep moving north!

Most of my life is now spent in front of a keyboard, and I really miss the feeling of a really good pen in your hand.

You always feel a little older when a massive figure from your childhood passes.  RIP, Willie Mays.






Tuesday, June 18, 2024

Angelo Rose

 

Angelo Rose died last week.  He was 93.

I'm guessing that if you are older than 45, you saw Angelo's name in the newspaper-- many, many times.  He was a photographer for the Scranton Times for more than thirty years.

I first met Angelo during my WARM radio days in the 80's.  Always professional and cordial, especially to a fellow Italian.

When I moved over to WYOU TV in 1990, I noticed something about Angelo.  He was very good at getting in your way.  It's not a bad thing.  I did the same thing to the television photographers when I was on the radio.  Angelo's job was to get the shot, and if he momentarily blocked out a television camera, so be it.  I was the same way.  I had to get my big WARM microphone in somebody's face, and if I got in the way, too bad.  I had a job to do.

Angelo Rose served his country, as part of the Navy during the Korean War.  He served his readers with memorable photography.

And, I was never angry Angelo got in my way.

Monday, June 17, 2024

2-6 at 1-6

 

I started at WNEP 26 years ago today.

Believe me, I'm just as amazed as you are.  Longevity in a transient business.

After a few years of bad choices and bad timing, lightning struck on that early summer day in 1998.  I happened to be looking for work when WNEP was desperately short of producers.  Rather than take a job offered in West Virginia, I chose to take a chance on WNEP (and vice versa), and it all worked out.

By the way, a pro tip for college students and recent graduates, learn how to produce a newscast.  There is always work for producers.  It's tough work, and burn out is always constantly staring over your shoulder, but producing is an "in demand" position.

I'll level with you.  There have been some awful days.  And some great ones.  And plenty in the middle.  I was doing the math, and I've spent more than 40 per cent of my life at 16 Montage Mountain Road.

It all comes down to the people.  Yes, not everyone has been a favorite, and I'm sure the feeling was mutual.  On the other hand, I cherish the friendship of some past and present coworkers.  They keep me sane.    They reminded me to stop and think.  And to feel.   I've never been good at that.  You saw me at my best.  You saw me at my worst.  I'm reminded of a small sign that used to be on a filing cabinet in the old WARM 590 newsroom in Avoca:  "You know who you are and what you did."  I'll add a "thank you."


Sunday, June 16, 2024

Andy's Angles: The Federal Building

 

This entry doesn't really have a raison d'etre, but I just liked the way the sun hit the building, and the blue sky above.

Above is the Federal Courthouse on North Washington Avenue in downtown Scranton, across from Courthouse Square.

Like yesterday, I actually have something nice to say.  The addition, on the left is about thirty years old now, and it's one case where the federal government actually did something right.  It seems to fit on the outside, and it's tied together nicely on the inside.

I'm sorry the addition required the demolition of building with businesses on the first floor and apartments above, but that is water over the dam.


Saturday, June 15, 2024

Andy's Angles: In the Trees

 

I actually have something nice to say today!

Back in the day, I savaged the Lackawanna County Courthouse renovation.  Yes, the building did need updating.  Yes, an inappropriate old annex was demolished.

But, it's still a sea of concrete and granite-- way too much.

Today, I am focusing in the trees.  Some big beautiful trees were taken down during the renovation.  I'm thrilled to say, the replacements have grown nicely.  It's still not the old Courthouse Square, but it's getting there.

Above is a Thursday morning shot from the Linden St./North Washington Avenue corner.

Friday, June 14, 2024

Overlooked

 

Today is Flag Day, an oft overlooked observance.  It commemorates the Second Continental Congress adopted the flag of the United States of America.

It's odd.  Typing the word "united" seems so strange these days.  It shouldn't be.  It doesn't have to be.  Sadly, it is.  

Maybe "united" will come back.  Some day.