Chas McNamara (Author's Website)
“Hey LT look at this,” one of my reporters shouted holding a copy of the Washington Post in front of him so I could see the headline.
“Booze, Broads and Boredom: Life in the Second Infantry Division,” read the headline. We all crowded around the paper that had been sent to him by his parents.
“We stirred up a hornet’s nest this time,” our editor said. A month earlier we had published an issue of the division's "Indianhead" newspaper, with a number of articles, photos and cartoons addressing the issue of venereal disease. We had quoted the division surgeon as saying the VD rate was 100 percent. We recognized other details in the Washington Post article that had come from our stories.
“Well this got their attention,” said the general in front of whose desk I was standing at attention. “It’s about time the brass knew what a bleak existence this is here.”
The division was based in northern Korea just south of the DMZ. Few improvements had been made to the facilities since the Korean war ended in 1953. It was 1973.
The soldiers liked what we were writing about because we were telling their story. Their existence. I now knew the impact of a good story. I had only been out of journalism school for three years.
That’s how my career in publishing started. I’ve worked on all kinds of publications and every time we found a good story to tell, the staff knew it and the readers told us.
Over the years I have produced publications for Metropolitan State College, Allied Jewish Federation of Denver, National Cattleman's Association, Children's World Learning Centers and others. I created the Mountain Commuter for people living in the mountains west of Denver and expanded Vail Magazine to become Vail/Beaver Creek Magazine. I’ve decided I am not a journalist. I am a story teller.
Approximately 3,000 mountain men roamed the Rocky Mountains between 1820 and 1840, the peak beaver-harvesting period. While many were free trappers, most mountain men were employed by major fur companies. Mountain men lived aux aliments du pays, French for “nourishment of the land”, surviving by using the provisions of nature. Eating bull cheese (buffalo jerky) and [...]
Journalist Marjorie Porter watched the old woman’s wrinkled hands spinning yarn and listened to the tune she was quietly humming as she worked. A cool breeze from across Lake George was stirring the humidity in the shade. It was 1941, and Porter, 32, had spent many summers with her family at the lake. Today, this [...]
Richard Lamm was governor (1975-1987) when Carol Keller started giving tours of the Colorado capitol building 25 years ago. She waits quietly for her next tour group to gather. She says good morning to Gov. John Hickenlooper as he enters the Executive Chambers near the capitol tour guides desk. It’s Friday, 10 a.m., according [...]
Jason Morse was following a narrow snow path to his neighbor’s house for Sunday brunch. It was one of those crunchy, my-breath-almost-froze-in-front-of-my-face Minnesota winters. The couple treated him like their grandson. Using their finest silverware, silver pitchers and china they covered the large dining room table with pastries and salads, meats and vegetables. It was [...]
Something flows through the work of fine art photographer Cole Thompson. It is a current from secret, obscure shadow to revealing, engaging light. It circulates like blood flowing in ones veins, or, like warmth from the sun. Thompson often finds the edge between shadow and light, moving away to a place of solitude, examining the [...]
In the town of Ballybay, in the County of Monaghan, four roads converge beside Lough Mór. The Dromore River meanders south of this Irish town. Tommy Makem, The Godfather of Irish Music, sang about a young lass in Ballybay who had a wooden leg to which she tied a string and played it like a [...]