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Jim's Jottings


Covering all the bases



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August 20, 2014 - The rapid increase in 'cold' calls has increased the 'heat' in my blood cells. These calls must have turned off listeners to the point of having lost their effectiveness (if they even any to begin with).

The final straw for me came Sunday evening at 7 p.m. when a surveyor asked, "Is James there?"

No one calls me James any more, and after 7 o'clock in the evening, calls come only from good friends. Cold callers beware.

* * *

• A major turnoff of mine comes from television marketers marketing a program or product proclaiming, "You must see!" or "You must have!" No, I don't.

• When there are 3 or more announcers on a program, then there will be 3 or more talking over each other. Egocentrics at work! Are sponsors promoting this over-talking? Do they think that's what the public wants?

• Shouldn't one have to pass a urine test to get a welfare check? And, shouldn't all politicians have to pass a urine test, too! They should also have to pass an intelligence test, common sense test, and an understanding the Constitution test, as well.

• It's easier to get up at 6 a.m, to play golf than at 10 a.m. to mow grass.

* It's amazing how a golfer who never helps around the house will replace his divots, repair his ball marks and rake his bunkers.

* * *

An Oxford Community Television crew came to my home recently to interview me for a program. I guess they wanted to know what I could remember after more than 8 decades on earth and 6 decades of newspapering in Oxford, Clarkston and Lake Orion.

I feared it not. What could they possibly ask me that I didn't know? Well, that wasn't the problem. Remembering was the problem.

The experienced interviewer, John Oetjens, came prepared to coach, give help and knew the exact time to tell the cameraman, "We'll be right back after a short break."

The questions were practical: "How many children did you and Hazel have?"

I thought I only had grandchildren, and the five names came easily. I eventually remembered we did have kids and that their names in order of birth were Jim, Luan and Susan.

What school were you graduated from?

Let's see, was it Morrice, Bancroft or Owosso? No. It was Vernon.

What made you get into journalism? Well, a couple of my uncles worked for The Lapeer County Press, and I got bit enough to take a journalism course at Michigan State.

A good friend of my uncle's owned The Clinton County News in St. Johns. He offered me a job in sales, which led to reporting news and sports.

Having learned everything I thought I needed to know, I asked the St. Johns publisher, Ink (Enoch) White for a day off to go buy a newspaper in the Thumb area. People south of there were smarter than me.

In the lower Thumb, I stopped to talk to County Press publisher, Bill Myers, and he suggested, "You might try Oxford; the owner there is up in years and might want to sell."

I stopped in Oxford and asked Mr. Congdon if he'd like to sell his paper.

He said yes, I said yes, and, things just worked out well for us since May 15, 1955.

I will let you know when they start to air this program.

Jim Sherman, Sr. is president of Sherman Publications, Inc. He has penned "Jim's Jottings" since 1955.
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