Navigating the workplace as a medical cannabis patient with PTSD

The sun’ll come out, to-mor-row!

You bet your medical cannabis dollar it will.

But the sunshine doesn’t come cheap! I’m doing better after yet another expensive trip to the dispensary, deemed necessary after a night of flashing lights three doors down.

But I need the income I’m accustomed-to to maintain this level of medicine! So, think about that a second. Think about people with PTSD who are not writers, or who cannot otherwise work from home (no need to interact with others aside from occasional interview).

Many people with PTSD cannot work. I certainly cannot envision myself working ANYWHERE publicly, meaning in a public place, in my town. There are too many people who I could offer a slice of my mind to, at any time.

I am blessed in what I do, so long as the work keeps coming. Self-employed. Work from home. I create pretty much in a vacuum, and it’s awesome.

Think of the stigma (heck, the drug test! how do you get past that as a medical cannabis patient, especially if it’s random?) a medical cannabis patient seeking employment faces. I understand this scrutiny for some jobs, but not others.

On top of it, let me tell you something. This stuff costs a fortune. People who are buying it on the street gasp when I tell them what it costs. But that’s fine. My stuff is tailor-made for my medical condition, made in a controlled, regulated greenhouse, and not purchased from a dealer who might go psycho and lace my shee-ot, thank you very much.

Last night was rough: Too many flashing lights

I won’t dwell about what happened last night, because I have no idea what actually happened. I just know the flashing lights, the location of the incident three doors down from me…it all added up to a huge and massive trigger.

But here’s the thing. I never once called the police department last night. And that is really, really huge, given what the whole thing looked like to me regardless of whatever happened. People have asked today if I am going to call down to the RIPD and ask what happened, or play reporter and go ask to look at the police report.

No. That’s the worst thing I could do. It doesn’t matter what happened. I need to try to forget about it. It was after the police left that I began to trigger. At least while they were there I felt safe.

For me, work isn’t just about income. It’s about staying busy. I have a lot of energy. That said, if I am overwhelmed with work, it becomes too much. Then, that can be a problem. It’s why I let Vital Updates go. It’s a fine line.

My point is, any idle time I have means I might look at QCTimes.com, or the Scott County Sheriff inmate listing…all things I just need to not even look at. Ever. It’s too much right now. I had stopped doing all of these things (and also stopped watching local news on TV) and was doing much better.

Had I not seen the Quad-Cities Most Wanted story and noticed the son of the former owner of this house on it, I would have not even begun the PTSD freak-out cycle that actually started last week. Then, for last night to happen…let’s just say I reported two years ago – correct? – when I first learned that “yeah, Uncle Benny’s house was the big party house!”

It’s all sickening and chilling and disgusting in the context of EV-ER-Y-THING that has happened to me. I hope my house is not contaminated with meth-making materials. My brother made the joke about “under the crawl space” and “under the floor of the shed,” after all, upon learning Frank Fitzpatrick is on the QC Most Wanted list.

Now I’ll stop.

If I hadn’t had medical cannabis this past week, hard telling how I would have handled all of this (or not). Not to mention some severe financial stress after losing a massive client of two years.

But the truth is, the client was a gem and even is offering to give me a reference. Why I have not focused on that I do not know. I feel like an outcast in my local community.

Thank God I have worked almost exclusively for national clients the past two years. The dishonest evildoers in my community told lies and fervently tried to make me look bad just as I totally pulled it all together, was fiercely watching over my dad, walking everywhere with no vehicle…for a year. I had sustained this for a year. Everything was fine, until I was poisoned, or whatever the hell happened.

Give. Me. A. Break. They threw me in jail on no charges at all after I reported something that has become quite scandalous. In fact, I called them about something else, then was questioned about what has turned out to be a big local story.

I keep hearing I might get a logical explanation. That would be fine. I doubt any logical explanation is coming, however. An explanation may be coming, that’s for sure.

It’s just becomingly increasingly obvious every day how crooked a lot of people in Rock Island County governance are and it is making me even antsier for the justice I may never see.

There are people in powerful positions in this county who are quite sick.

NOW that I have that out, and took 300 words to do it, oy, I want to say that I have landed a very good paying assignment for a huge healthcare company. It occurs to me nobody needs to even know who my clients are on content I produce that’s not bylined. (Update: The gig did not work out, and it was an extremely poor fit anyhow)

So, there’s a workaround for any client who doesn’t want to affiliate with the medical pot guy!

It also is an incredibly important assignment as it pertains to improving patient outcomes for the elderly.  We all know that’s something I can get passionate about.

My gig is unusual and incredible, and probably about as good as it gets for a medical cannabis patient. And yet, I still struggle during transitions of client to client.

What about all the military people with PTSD with a cannabis card? They are paying these prices too, and if they have PTSD and were in the service, chances are employment is extraordinarily difficult for them. What are they supposed to do?

Check out the VA’s disgraceful medical cannabis policy.

What about victims of violent crime – rape, attempted murder – who are angry and cannot function properly in the workplace? And then, to make the only effective treatment for some of them so pricey it’s out of reach? I am NOT complaining about the price of medical cannabis. I’m saying insurance should help pay for it.

The only people laughing at that are completely healthy, judgmental people who never have smoked medical cannabis. I assure you.

Outrageous.

No health plan on earth (or at least in the U.S.) that I know of is going to pay for your medical cannabis at this time, even if you have the best health plan on earth.

It’s wrong.

Medical cannabis reviews are fun, fun, fun

I am having a nice day watching concerts on AXSTV. And this is all happening the day after a difficult night.

Tomorrow I hope to wake up fresh and spend the entire day on my paid assignment, for which I am excited about and extremely grateful.

But today I’m enjoying my NTI bounty: Brownie Scout, Cuvee, Brazil Amazonia, Ghost x Flo, and Shangri-la.

To think all I went in for was the “Smoke Sessions” special – free joint with purchase of eighths of certain strains.

I bought an eighth of Bio Jesus, which is awesome. You can check out my review of Bio Jesus right here. I’m not a joint person, but since it’s pre-rolled and I don’t have to do it, I’m going to spark up my free joint in a minute.

And heck yeah, I’m going to review every single one of those other above-mentioned strains I purchased today. I never have tried them before.

Check them out right here, at DavidHeitz.com.

Recovery and mental wellness through medical cannabis. Every day.

You won’t want to miss my fun little reviews!

My first year as a publishing tycoon: 26,234 hits and growing

(Cake courtesy Jewel, Cityline Plaza, Moline)

DavidHeitz.com turns a year old today! As a gift to myself, I’ve turned the ads on.

I have to pay the Internet bill somehow.

I love the “Live Mas” Taco Bell ones flickering on the cannabis content the best. I’ve seen one for Hyundai, too…even one for LEGOLAND!

And then there’s the matter of the above-pictured pastry. I told the gals at Jewel to check out DavidHeitz.com and come up with something fitting for its first anniversary.

I think they did an incredible job. The scales of justice are, well…the icing on the cake.

Let me tell you how much fun my website has been for a 47-year-old who landed his first paid newspaper job three decades ago. The internet has created an almost completely level playing field in the world of publishing.

My “printing press” is this website, which costs about $400 per year. My “circulation department” is Facebook – a much, much, much, much bigger annual cost. But worth it.

Sometimes I get a remarkable algorithm on my stories on my Facebook page without ever even spending a penny. With almost 4,600 Facebook followers alone, it happens now and then.

And, I have a message that people find interesting.  Sharing it has paid dividends already. Often, writing about what happened to me is a way of simply feeling like I have done something regarding all the nonsense I’ve endured the past three years. The word “dirty” doesn’t even begin to explain it.

The truth is coming out now. Anyone who pays one iota of attention should be picking up on a few things and connecting some dots.

Had I not had this site and my Facebook page, I don’t know my claims of abuse ever would have been investigated. But I’m pretty sure they have. Honestly though, I have no idea where things stand. Nobody in their right mind would ever tell me something they don’t want reported.

I know how things are beginning to look, however.

At the end of the day, a member of the Rock Island County Board told me to take my story of what happened in the jail to the local news media and scream it at the top of my lungs. I knew that wouldn’t get me anywhere.

But this site has. I think.

A worldwide media presence

Do young journalists still dream of owning their own newspaper? I never did, but only because I never even fathomed it a reality.

I never could have guessed that by middle age, I’d be a bonafide publisher cranking out copy from the comfort of my own home. Delivering it, in fact, to consumers of my content on their phones, tablets and laptops. Even being able to decide who, where, and what interests I want to target with each post. I have followers (quite a few in fact) in several African nations due to all the HIV reporting I used to do, as well as a few in the Netherlands, and bunches in the UK.

I also have followers of my blog in Albania, Qatar, South Korea and Germany. And Australia. How could I forget Australia?

This is a dream newspaper on steroids!

Working on my book, writing about issues nobody else wants to touch…it gives me tremendous purpose. Purpose is key to my happiness in life. As long as I have purpose, I really don’t need much else.

My purpose is to shed light on the truth regarding certain topics. Those topics include medical cannabis, elder care, mental health, sober living, and public corruption.

I wrote my very first blog post on Aug. 9, 2016. You can read it right here.

Things are better now than they were a year ago. I always said to my therapist, “Imagine how things are going to be when everyone finds out that everything I have said happened to me are proven true. It will be like living it all over again, but maybe worse, because there may be even more to all of this that I don’t remember.”

It’s a real and frightening thought, given it took a year to remember the initial assault in my basement. When I did remember it, it was in an extremely disturbing manner.

And now everything is adding up. I’m still holding out faith in law enforcement and the justice system.

And I’m glad I turned the ads on.

Keep circling back, and thanks so much for playing a part in making my site successful!

Here’s even more proof that the plant is a way out of addiction

Photo courtesy Pixabay

From the “About” page of my newly revamped website, DavidHeitz.com:

“I am an Illinois medical cannabis cardholder with the qualifying condition of chronic PTSD. Do not let anyone ever tell you that you are not really sober if you are using medical cannabis.”

I quietly made the change about two weeks ago, fully realizing that I probably can forget about any more great-paying work from rehab centers. I got into journalism to help people anyway, not get rich.

The next sentence likely sealed the deal that I won’t be getting any more work from members of the staid medical establishment.

“I believe addiction should be a qualifying condition for a marijuana card if deemed appropriate by a doctor. It goes without saying that federal laws about cannabis need to be abolished to align with science and the majority of the states.”

Read more: My paid addiction/recovery portfolio

I’m not worried. The mainstream medical establishment is on the wrong side of this issue. I have no doubt work will be forthcoming from more progressive medical sectors.

Consider a new survey by HelloMD. It shows almost EVERY opioid user surveyed in a study for the site agrees they can decrease their opioid use with cannabis, and that they would rather be medicating with the plant.

I have no doubt that the day is coming – perhaps it’s here already – where there will be rehab centers that discuss cannabis use as a path to sobriety.

This has been going on in AA chapters for decades, folks. Many have established pot dealers among their ranks. And many – way more than you would think – smoke their cannabis at home, keep it to themselves, and just go to their 12-step meetings with their mouths taped shut.

When your doctor says ‘The research just isn’t there’

Nobody likes making medical claims based largely on conjecture. And let me stress that I am not a doctor and my website is not intended to be a replacement for medical advice from a trained professional.

But when it comes to cannabis, we don’t have much choice. The federal government not only has resisted allowing clinical studies on cannabis, the studies that have been done only have used a few different types of plant. That’s because the feds require the weed used for research be grown in their garden at the University of Mississippi.

So today I report, with vigor, some anecdotal evidence I do not find surprising: According to a new study released last week by HelloMD, 80 percent of people surveyed found CBD “very” or “extremely” effective for treating their ailments. More than 40 percent reported that they have stopped using “traditional medications” in favor of cannabis, according to the HelloMD survey.

Read about my medicine cabinet shakeup: Bye-bye Xanax, hello medical cannabis (CBD)

When I got off benzodiazepines about two months ago after being on them for two years – 4 mg per day of Ativan in the height of it all – I felt an amazing sense of accomplishment. It felt so good, in fact, that it renewed my commitment to sobriety after falling off the wagon after 2 ½ years in January.

In July, I stopped drinking completely again after a spurt of relapses that lasted about five months. The relapses continued because my commitment to sobriety had waned. I was no longer making an effort nor did I feel the need to. With the cannabis, I feel an overall sense of hope again.

I have been through a lot. And I’m quite certain it’s not over yet.

Even more importantly than getting my sobriety back is the fact that I physically and mentally feel a hundred times better. The reason for this is that my Illinois medical cannabis card allows me, as a qualifying patient, to purchase flower, oil, sprays, topicals, patches, pills and edibles high in CBD content.

I can purchase anything I want at the dispensary, actually. You’re not actually written a prescription by a doctor, at least you don’t have to be. Responsible doctors who are acknowledging the powers of medical cannabis are doing that, however — when qualified — to help their patients make knowledgeable cannabis decisions.

The truth is, many doctors aren’t qualified to make recommendations about cannabis. And too many have no interest in learning about it. And that’s precisely why people are turning to HelloMD, where real doctors trained in medical cannabis can get you started on the qualification process – all right online.

It’s very cool.

Over the weekend I posted a video about dabbing CBD oil on candy to treat PTSD-related symptoms throughout the day. It was a huge hit, without a single derogatory or anti-cannabis comment.

Obviously, the secret is out.

CBD doesn’t make you ‘high’

CBD is not THC. THC is the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis that makes a person “high.” But don’t fool yourself – THC has significant medical properties, too. While CBD keeps me calm, it won’t put me to sleep. An indica-dominant strain with high levels of THC and the right terpenes does (Lemon Skunk, Granddaddy Purple, Cuvee, Shangri-la, Starry Night).

CBD, however, is fast emerging the true doctor in the house when it comes to medical cannabis.

Read more: How medical cannabis is funding mental health services in Shelby County, Ill.

According to the HelloMD study, conducted by the Brightfield Group:

  • People who treat their illnesses with CBD spend less per month on medical cannabis than those who treat their medical conditions with THC-dominant strains. While the study references people getting by on as little as $80 per month, I’m not sure that’s applicable in states where medical cannabis is extremely expensive, like Illinois. In other states, like California, it may very well be the case that you can medicate for $100 per month or less.
  • More than half say their CBD products do a better job at treating their medical conditions than their Pharma scripts. Amen. All I take now is blood pressure medication.

What is CBD used for?

In addition to PTSD, which is my qualifying condition, CBD is used for:

  • Joint pain
  • Migraine headaches
  • Chronic pain and severe pain
  • Arthritis
  • Nausea

What HelloMD has to say about its study

More than 1,400 people participated in the HelloMD survey.

“The latest publication from the National Academy of Sciences clearly refuted the ‘gateway drug’ theory that using marijuana can lead to opioid addiction, instead finding evidence of cannabis having multiple curative benefits,” Dr. Perry Solomon, chief medical officer of HelloMD, said in a news release.

“Our study further substantiates this. Hopefully this will awaken the public, medical professionals and legislatures to this fact that cannabis is a safe, non-addictive product available to help fight the opioid epidemic,” he added.

Amanda Reiman, a PhD at the School of Social Welfare, Berkeley, led the study. “The treatment of pain has become a politicized business in the United States,” she bluntly explains in the news release. “The result has been the rapidly rising rate of opioid-related overdoses and dependence.”

When all is said and done, I have interviewed too many opioid addicts who got off the drugs with marijuana to continue to endorse opioid maintenance therapy as a long-term solution.

Reiman echoes exactly what I have heard, over and over and over again: “Patients have been telling us for decades that this practice is producing better outcomes than the use of opioid based medications. It’s past time for the medical profession to get over their reefer madness and start working with the medical cannabis movement and industry to slow down the destruction being caused by the over prescribing and overuse of opioids.”

Amen.

To check out HelloMD’s report for yourself, click here. 

Read more: My portfolio of paid articles about mental health issues

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Chapter 11: My life as a reporter for the Quad-City Times

Copyright David Heitz

The lead story on my going-away page of June 6, 1991, said it all.

“BELCH, BELCH, BELCH: Dave Heitz answers his last phone call at the Quad-City Times.”

Indeed, the headline referenced my already well-established drinking problem. What’s worse? I wasn’t even old enough to drink yet. But I’d certainly had lots of practice working at the Quad-City Times during the previous five years.

Going out with Times staffers post-deadline in the 1980s and 1990s, I never got carded even once.

Nope. Not even once. Pat McGuire’s had been great fun for me since my freshman year of Augustana College.

Augustana College is another chapter of this book altogether.

No institution has shaped who I am today more than the Quad-City Times newspaper in Davenport, Iowa. No place even comes close.

And I’m proud of that. I don’t really have a choice!

Strange and chuckle-able as its name may be (what’s a Quad-City?), the community the newspaper serves is anything but a laughing matter.

Q-C already has caught Hollywood’s eye

Few people have heard of the Quad-Cities. A few have heard of Davenport, the largest city in the Quad-Cities, and where the Quad-City Times is located.

The community comprises four cities that straddle the Mississippi River on both the Illinois and Iowa sides, and many smaller, outlying burgs. Eventually, the metropolitan area trickles off into cornfields in all directions, although Des Moines and Chicago both are within a three-hour drive.

What goes on in this town is the stuff Hollywood films are made of. Indeed, “Road to Perdition” starring Tom Hanks, based on the novel about notorious Rock Island gangster John Looney, already was a blockbuster hit.

From Lexa Luther, to Billy Blowhard, to Lois Lush, our cast of characters knows how to make news, even if it usually never gets covered. We’ve got dirty politics, what certainly appears to look and smell like organized crime, and a drunken news reporter on duty somewhere, 24/7.

And it’s always been this way, even if the players in the various roles have changed through the years.

Check out excerpts from Chapter One: Dad and I reclaim the property

Lord knows I filled the role of Lush for many years. And Lord knows I have known the Lexas and the Billies. Smart reporters do their time here and get out, or move on to some other profession locally.

Smart reporters do not get sucked into the swamp.

Problem is, I used to get so drunk I didn’t even care about the things I saw and heard. I wasn’t the first Quad-City reporter to ever get to that point and I won’t be the last.

From Milan skunks to skunk weed in Milan

The most disturbing part about the news media in the Quad-Cities, at least every time I was a part of it (which spanned 25 years on and off), is how everyone looks the other way about official things gone awry.

I certainly got that impression throughout every tenure I had at the Quad-City Times. The commandments were clear:  Doth not question authority, doth not protest too much, and doth never take a competitor’s name in vain.

Consider the tertiary headline on my going-away page, after the “BELCH, BELCH, BELCH” banner and the secondary head, which referenced my poor driving skills.

“When things reek bad, call on Times reporter, skunk expert, Heitz” may have secured my place in Quad-City Times lore even more than the Klindt interview.

From the story on my going-away page, which sadly has some true parts to it:

“When the skunks stormed Milan, Dave Heitz scooped the competition and sniffed out a front-page story. He basked in the glory of his story. Job offers flowed in from around the globe. Even Geraldo called.”

But then the smart-aleck author takes a turn for the true. “Next day came the call that would threaten his job security and make him sorry he ever uncovered that skunk scam. ‘Hey is this the skunk reporter?’ sneered a disc jockey.”

Indeed, 97X, I believe it was, had called me while I still was in bed wanting to talk about a story I had written about skunks terrorizing a Milan neighborhood. I apparently didn’t handle it properly on the air or represent the Quad-City Times well.

I was in college, remember. Augustana College. Another chapter.

“After several high-level meetings, it was decided that Dave could keep his job,” the author of the story on the faux front page pictured with this chapter wrote. “But sadly, his career never rebounded.

“That’s why he’s fleeing the skunk-infested Milan beat. He’s heading to the L.A., where the freeways are free of the varmints that ruined his reputation.”

Ha!

I never realized until I wrote this how ironic it is that now I go to Milan for “skunk” weed. As a qualifying medical cannabis patient in Illinois, my dispensary is in Milan.

Read more: I legally bought weed today in Milan, Ill. Thank you, Lord

The notorious James Klindt ‘killer tacos’ interview

Always take no for an answer from public officials, and then politely run along. That’s the message I always got while working as a reporter for the Quad-City Times, at least if you wanted to keep your job.

My problem was, I always had a very difficult time doing that. And I still do. And I got to where I decided that unemployment was better than going in every day and pounding out happy stories all the while drowning in the community cesspool.

That’s not to say the newspaper doesn’t produce some fine scoops now and then. For sure, it does, and I am forever grateful for every community newspaper that exists. I know how badly they are needed, even if the days of doing impactful journalism are few and far between. Everywhere.

The biggest feather in my cap during my tenure at the Quad-City Times probably was landing the only post-prison interview convicted killer and former Davenport chiropractor James Klindt ever gave.

Years of warming the bar stool at Mary’s on 2nd Street paid off when a sizzling tip led to my explosive story: “Klindt finds new life, career in taco stand.”

I interviewed Klindt in my Ford Taurus. You can check it out by clicking right here.

The story ended up going out on the wire and even was translated into Japanese. Jay Leno had a ball with it, too.

Klindt killed his wife before dismembering her body with a chainsaw and then dumping it in the Mississippi River.

The Halloween party featuring Clarence Thomas – in black face

Through the years, the Quad-City Times has seen characters aplenty come and go. Newsroom alumni I have worked with through the years have gone on to become members of Congress, a mixed martial arts tycoon convicted of tax evasion, multiple healthcare PR divas, a spokesman for a far-right think tank, porn stars, clergy, an assistant district attorney, and much, much more.

Lots of people leave the news business, but stick around and do different things.

Most of the time that’s fine and dandy, but sometimes it gets “icky sticky makes me sicky.”

But then, newspaper people are known for their shenanigans.

At one Times party in the late 1980s or early 1990s, a staffer came dressed as Clarence Thomas – in black face – with pubic hair taped atop a Coke can.

At another, everyone was drunk at a going away party for an editor. There was marijuana, booze, rifles, and bows and arrows everywhere. No harm no foul, right? Everyone was having a grand old time. A hunter was showing off his hunting tools like hunters do.

Still, what a scene. I was driven home (I think) by a photographer who still works at the Times. I threw up on the way to my apartment, just as I had thrown up at the party.

The editor was the coolest guy on earth. I called and offered to clean up his apartment the next day, and he totally laughed the entire incident off. Very gracious.

Burning it at both ends has been a hallmark of the news business for many years. Drugs and alcohol have claimed thousands of journalists’ lives and careers.

It’s important to remember how these sorts of stories typify the fraternity that exists among news people. In this same context, it’s very important to remember that mainstream news people are still people. For me, it’s why the current “holier than thou” and “fake news” narrative is aggravating.

Nobody is completely objective. Nobody. You can strive for it, sure. But it’s not part of the human condition, and I never have felt comfortable with the Fourth Estate making that claim.

Do you want to get your news from a person or organization who admits their slant (and knows your objectives in terms of information seeking), or do you want it from organizations that claims “objectivity” when it’s not even humanly possible?

We find out when staffers leave the Times who they really are. Sometimes it’s rather startling.

My first ‘stakeout’ at Moline mayor’s house

For me, the Quad-City Times was a grand escape from a miserable life. My mother and father had just divorced, and I had moved in with my cousin (and was paying rent) my senior year of high school.

At the time, everyone marveled at how I held my head high. I performed in all the plays and the musical my senior year on top of editing the student newspaper, working on the yearbook, and working part-time at the Quad-City Times.

In reality, this overachievement was a quest to be affirmed by someone, someplace, something. The Quad-City Times gave me that, and there is no way I ever can be anything but eternally grateful.

I was the biggest little suck-up on earth during my first two tours of duty at the Quad-City Times. It served me well.

I remember being sent to my first “stakeout.” One editor in particular had a fascination with the Moline mayor. One night, she sent me to his house to take down all the license plate numbers of the cars parked outside. She said she wanted to know if he was violating the open meetings act by having council members meeting at his house.

Other staffers say she may have had other intentions.

I didn’t care. It was a stakeout, and it was exciting. And I figured I must be very, very trustworthy and important to be sent on such an assignment.

In retrospect, I wonder if I was being used. It’s sad that I feel that way. But things have happened since I left the Quad-City Times that make me look at the place a lot differently. It will forever be an incredibly strong trigger.

I realized this when I got a car for the first time in three years. Seldom do I ever venture to the Iowa side of the river anymore, but when I have, just driving past the building makes me start to have physical symptoms of anxiety.

It’s too bad, but it is what it is.

Read excerpts from Chapter 5: My dad’s bizarre brain disease

Me and Sioux See had so much fun

One of my best friends at the Times during the early days was Sioux See. Sioux See and I had great fun.

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We were about the same age, and found the Quad-City Times a fascinating place to work part-time. We would gossip and giggle about all the different personalities. Sioux See was incredibly insightful and smart. She picked up on realities about the Quad-City Times long before I did.

And she was right about so many things. Things that still hold true.

Book coming fall 2018!

Sioux See and I would giggle uncontrollably at times. We all did.

For a while, there was an editor in charge at night who would write up a note at the end of the shift. She kicked butt and named names and then she slid the note under the editor’s door.

Sioux See and I figured out that when she printed out the note, it briefly became visible in the system for anyone to see. We would type in “FE, AmCity” – oh yes, I have worked on newspaper systems that old, even VDT terminals prior to the birth of the PC – and we would find the file and read it.

We were true journalists. We still are. Even when you’re not fully feeding the fire, it never goes away. It always keeps burning.