Sometimes it’s tough to teach an old dog new tricks, but I’m learning.
To tell you a little about myself: I was born in the Tri-Cities, and outside of five years away at college, I’ve lived here all of my life.
I graduated in 1979 from Kamiakin High School. Yes, I know there are some of you out there who may think that’s why Kamiakin must always get more headlines.
Trust me when I tell you I get e-mails from Kamiakin people who wonder why we don’t do much on Kamiakin. (In fact, over the years we’ve gotten many of those questions, but you can replace “Kamiakin” with any other school name.).
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But while I consider many coaches and teachers there at Kamiakin friends, I consider myself a Tri-Citian who has numerous friends and acquaintences in the entire area. In fact, I have a number of connections to various schools.
My parents both attended and graduated from Richland High. So I know the rich sports history there. My cousins all went to Pasco High, and former athletic director Anne Hayden was so kind to me when I started as a rookie reporter. My middle school friends all went to Kennewick High, as did my oldest daughter. My youngest daughter attends Southridge High, though she doesn’t play any sports.
My brother once coached football at Hanford High for John Morgan, I actually helped there, and one of my best friends growing up with me has been a school official there.
I’ve had numerous cousins up and down the Yakima Valley who have attended Prosser, Sunnyside and Grandview high schools.
In addition, I’ve worked at the Herald since 1985. I’ve developed relationships with numerous people at other schools in the Mid-Columbia.
Now, all of this doesn’t mean some people don’t think I’m a dumbass (My wife will confirm that I can be).
But I think my history here shows that I do like this area. This is a great area to raise a family, and I still love sports.
As a 12-year-old, I remember racing home from school every day to grab the Tri-City Herald (it was an afternoon paper back then) and read the sports section from front to back. The next thing I’d do would be to turn to page A2 to read what pot columnist Jack Briggs was stirring up around the three cities.
I remember spending my summers at Sanders-Jacobs Field watching the Tri-City Atoms or Padres. My parents bought me a season ticket every summer.
The ballpark stood where Inca, Arby’s and Tumbleweeds now are next to Clearwater Avenue. When it was torn down in the mid-1970s, part of my childhood went with it.
But I spent enough time there to develop a life-long love of sports.
I’ve since added a love of writing and have been lucky enough to combine them in the newspaper business.
And things have changed in this business since I first started here. We’ve gone from bulky, slow computers, to voice mails, to e-mail, to laptops, to the internet. Now, I’m asking you to participate.
So please, send me your questions wondering how things are done and why, or suggestions on what we can do to make our section or website better, and let’s go from there.
Wow. Maybe I can learn a new trick.