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Category Archives: My Newspaper Stuff

Bath Salts Make Your Face Look Tasty

As regular readers might know, I work at a daily newspaper writing about crimes and criminals. And just like that face-eating guy down in Florida, we’ve had our fair share of bath salts-related incidents here in Upstate NY. There have been a few this year, but the freakiest by far was last week. This woman came out of her house choking her kid, fell down some stairs, stripped naked, ran around growling at people, choked her pit bull, fell down the stairs again and then tried to bite the cops.

Pepper spray had no effect on her, but she was able to be hand-cuffed when she was Tasered. Unfortuantely, she’d been having some heart conditions and later died of some kind of heart attack. The whole thing is still under investigation, but you can read the story I wrote about it here.

Meanwhile, speaking of people writing things about crazy bath salts, here is a rap by mc chris called ‘Tasty Face’!

Uh, hopefully this wasn’t in too poor of taste.

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Trial is Over! Normal Posting Will Resume Soon

So whew, that big murder trial I’ve been covering for the past two weeks is finally over! Guilty on all counts in the shooting of a local Sheriff’s deputy. Pretty intense stuff at times, but it was also a pretty open and shut case. I think I might write a full entry about it. But for my regular readers, the few fan I’m collecting, this means I’ll be back to normal posting as early as this weekend!

For anyone interested in the trial, here’s a story that ran in my newspaper today that kind of sums it up.

Sean vs. Pure Evil

I’ve been doing more posts about my day job recently. Perhaps I just like stealing the title idea from Chuck. But this story is definitely worth it. Because today I saw the face of pure evil. I even got to write about it for my newspaper! We’re talking the scum of he Earth. A man so volatile and repugnant that we would all be justified in just snapping his vile neck.

Meet Robert W. Blainey, serial rapist and murderer.

Robert W. Blainey

This is a man who has spent most of his adult life behind bars. And the both times he has been released on parole, he has almost immediately gone back out to rape again. Only this time, in November, he not only raped a poor woman, but killed her as well. Today he plead guilty in court. He didn’t even try to fight the charges of murder, robbery and rape. He happily excepted the sentence of life in prison without parole.

He was arrogant, flippant and simply monstrous. This man rapes women. It’s what he does, and he’s perfectly OK with it. You can read my full story here. For once, my newspaper has posted the story online in a timely fashion.

Sean vs. His Alma Mater

Sorry for the inactivity, loyal blog-readers. I had a pretty hectic past few days. On Friday, there was another huge fire for me to write about for my newspaper. It’s winter, so there are a lot of those. But it was also super cold out, with my crappy shoes soaking through with frigid water. So by the time I got home, I was dead on my freezing cold feet and just wanted to relax. Plus there simply weren’t any good things to write about on Friday.

Though the fire was pretty cool. I got to interview a one-legged man who saved himself and his girlfriend from the second-floor. And a heroic barber who ran upstairs from his barbershop to help out. So pretty cool story. I wish it was online so I could share with everybody…but my newspaper seems to think the Internet stopped growing circa 1996.

Something like this

So another cool fire story.

Then on Saturday, I got a call from my old high school friends out of the blue to go see a basketball game. I don’t know if I’ve written about this before on my blog, but I bleed Orange – Syracuse University Orange, that is!

Otto in the house!

I graduated from SU in 2005 (holla!), but it’s rare that I’ve been back to campus. So the fact that my Alma Mater has the #1 college basketball team in the country sounded like a damn good reason to get out of the house. I don’t live far, so it was a quick drive – in freezing cold temperatures. Still winter.

Hung out with some old pals, saw a great game and basically had a busy weekend so far. Syracuse destroyed the Providence Friars. It’s pretty clear why Syracuse is #1. They played some damn good basketball. The Friars played good starting out, but it wasn’t long before Syracuse was more than twice their score and maintained that commanding lead for the rest of the game. I’m not a sports guy, but I enjoy attending a good game with friends.

I also had the horrible fun of visiting my old college campus. Clearly I’m not in as good of shape as I was in my college days, because it was brutal for this chubby, out-of-shape guy to walk around that campus. A lot of it’s uphill too. So ugh, my Alma Mater did a number on me.

At any rate, that’s my excuse for not giving you all much to read this weekend: a busy social life!

Stay tuned this upcoming week for a look at the Watchmen 2 rumors and possibly my 300th post!

Sean vs. The Barn Fire

So wow, there is absolutely no interesting news going on in the world of pop culture right now. At least nothing I’d usually write about. I think DC Comics gave a stupid name – Pandora – to that hooded woman from their New 52 event. And there’s some back and forth over whether or not Bane’s voice needs re-dubbing in The Dark Knight Rises. Not the sort of stuff I can write an adventure about!

So with nothing better to do, I’ll tell you about my Monday night covering a massive barn fire!

I don’t write about my personal life much, but some of you may know that I’m a newspaper reporter in Central New York. Specifically I write about the police beat and fires. All the cool stuff. I sometimes want to write on this blog more often about my day job, but usually there’s plenty of fun comic book stuff to keep me occupied. Oh well. Your loss.

So there I was Monday night, the last day of my 3-day New Year’s vacation, sitting all nice and toasty warm in my apartment. I was hanging out with my girlfriend, watching an American Dad! marathon, and basically enjoying life. Lo and behold, however, I get a sudden phone call from my boss. This is not a frequent occurrence.

Oh no! he tells me, there’s a massive barn fire outside the city! The photographer is in North Carolina, and it’s all up to me to get my butt out there and save the day, or get the story. What was I supposed to do, lie? I’m just chillin’ at home. So I pause the American Dad!, throw on a coat and shoes and head out into the cold, dreary snow. It’s in the 20s temperature wise, with freshly fallen snow on the ground. It’s 5:30 p.m., so in January that’s already pitch black out. The last thing I want to do is be out there in this weather standing around watching  a barn burn.

But away I go!

Burn, baby, burn!

I took that picture myself once I got to the scene. Had to park some distance away and trudge through the cold to get that close. The flames were supposedly much higher at the peak of the fire, taller even than a nearby silo. Still, I made it with some flames and took a bunch of pictures. That’s my job: to stand out on the street in the dark watching firefighters put out raging infernos. It can be pretty cool, if it’s not super cold.

There are no official rules for what to do at a fire scene, just a lot of stuff I’ve picked up over the years from working with firefighters. I know to stay the hell out of there way, but they also know that I’m looking for information. So I hung back near the fire trucks and just watched them work. I spoke with a neighbor, who gave me some great quotes about what he saw. I also spoke with the son of the homeowner, getting a phone number to call the next morning for information on the barn. It’s worse when it’s a house, because the last thing you want to do is bother somebody who is in the process of losing their house while you’re trying to interview them for the newspaper.

But nobody was hurt in this barn fire, and nobody lived on the property. A horse died though. I guess that’s sad.

I hung out for about an hour before heading home. My newspaper has a noon deadline each day, so Monday’s newspaper was already on the streets and the fire story wouldn’t go to print until Tuesday’s newspaper. So I knew I could just come in the next morning and talk to the fire chief to get the details, which I did. I didn’t have to stick around on the scene until he had a moment to talk to me.

I would link you to the story I wrote, but apparently my newspaper hasn’t updated their website. I will provide a link, should they ever provide me a webpage. Anyway, I hope you all enjoyed the little peek into my day job! It can be a blast, but it can be really cold sometimes too.

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