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    « Sandy | Main | A Facebook Face-Off? »

    The Calm After the Storm

     I grew up in New Jersey. I still have a few relatives and many friends living there that I keep in touch with. Hurricane Sandy really concerned me, so, this morning, when I found out that everyone I know survived the mess safe and sound, I was quite relieved. Yes, there are massive power outages and downed trees all over the northeast, but no one I know was hurt. As of this writing, 89% of the population of Hunterdon County, where I was born and raised, is without electricity. Thank goodness for gas stoves, although not everyone has them.

    Speaking of stoves, I spent eleven years in the restaurant business in the Garden State. I, quite literally, worked my way up from sweeping floors and dumping trash to, what my old boss once told me, becoming the best manager he ever had, and I did it in record time. I took great pride in that due to one thing; one person. I had the utmost respect for my boss, Jack Little, and I still do. He was the best boss a person could ever have and he helped raise me, whether he knew it or not. If I was his best manager, it was because of what he taught me as an employer, a father figure, and a decent and honest human being. It was the respect he showed others that was instilled in me. And from him, I learned how to be as cool as a cucumber under fire. Don’t panic! Think fast on your feet.

    Inherent in any business, in order to be successful, is customer service. That’s the single most important factor, especially in a restaurant, where a customer wants to walk into a clean place, filled with smiling faces eager to serve you. It’s one of the cardinal rules of the service industry; service with a smile — and what you serve had better be just as good.

    I was much younger then and it was not unusual for me to put in 80-hour workweeks; nominally, 60. I was quite sharp in those days, too. There was a time — I kid you not — that a series of events (call them major breakdowns) hit me all at once and I had to render split-second decisions. In the middle of a lunch rush, of all times, a deep fryer stopped working, a toilet overflowed, a customer complained that their order wasn’t prepared right, and two of the front counter girls decided it was the proper time to pick a fight with each other. Yup, in front of hungry customers, anxious to get their food and go back to work; customers who couldn’t care less about Debbie and Sue, nor their boneheaded boyfriends and who they flirted with.

    From Jack, I learned how to work under pressure — how to deal with the daily events in the life of a restaurateur. Find ‘em and fix ‘em fast. He also taught me how to deal with people at all levels. After all, that’s what customer service really is, but it doesn’t stop there. It also includes the interaction between employees. How can a business run smoothly if there are underlying problems?

    On that particular day, I called each girl to the back room, one at a time. By taking them out of the argument, I accomplished the first thing; they couldn’t fight. I told them that if I heard another word, I would fire them on the spot and handle the lunch rush without them. I had other boys and girls working at the time and we’d just have to work harder. Most importantly, they would be out of a job and I stressed that a thousand other kids were banging at my back door begging for work. Yes, they were kids.

    “But, but, but,” they tried to explain in their whiny voices, “Debbie did this” and “Sue did that” and each boyfriend was somehow involved. I didn’t want to hear about it. 

    “Yeah, yeah, yeah,” I said, “but this is not the time or place. Customers don’t want to listen to your petty fights, do they?”

    Basically, all it took was a minute to talk to each of them alone and things quickly settled down. I had learned a long time ago not to take sides, too. That was most important. NEVER TAKE SIDES because, in the end, I would be the only loser. And darned if it wasn’t the truth. After the lunch rush was over and things got cleaned up, wouldn’t you just know those two girls had already patched things up? There they were, taking their lunch break together, sitting at one of the tables and laughing up a storm. It was as if nothing ever happened. Had I taken sides, I would have been the real bonehead and worthy of the title.


    Since those days, I don’t know what happened. I left the restaurant business in the early 80s. Today, at 60, I’m no longer interested in running a business, nor am I healthy enough to open one, but, somehow, I seemed to have lost that touch. While I still know a thing or two about customer service, something is amok on my blog and only I am to blame for not keeping it under control. No one else. Understandably, I must grab the bull by the horns. Right now.

    As with any business that deals with the public, it’s the meet and greet people who make your business successful. While management works diligently behind the scenes, it’s the front counter people that make and break a business. While I was all about hands-on management, I couldn’t do it all. No one can.

    I understood, and still do, that I could serve the best hamburger in the business, but all it would have taken was a couple of employees to throw it all away; not by being mean to customers, but by what the customers saw and heard coming from the front counter. If I walked in off the street, I wouldn’t care if you’ve got the best burger on the planet. By running a sloppy ship, I would wonder if your kitchen was just as messy, and I seriously doubt I’d want to come back, let alone order anything. Do you wash your hands?

    While no one on my blog is an employee and readers are not customers, please remember that half of Marinade Dave is what I write and the other half is what commenters have to say. That’s the entire menu – the recipe for success and it’s the beauty of blogging. Failure is not an option.

    I realize that tomorrow is Halloween, but coming here should not be a frightening experience. I want more readers! I want more comments! I don’t want people to be afraid of anything. While I would never expect everyone to agree with one another, let alone what I write, hiding behind the mask of anonymity does not give anyone a right to be uncivil. Be nice to each other. I realize that many years of writing comments about the Casey Anthony case (and now this one) has hardened us. Today is the day to wipe our slates clean! At least, on this blog, because it’s all that’s left to do. Please believe me when I say this…

    Marinade Dave is not the name of a hurricane and now is the time for calm after the storm. I refuse to write if it ends in a fight. We are a team and that means all of us!

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    Reader Comments (21)

    With this, I hope to get back to the matter at hand and write about the gag order and other issues rrleated to the Zimmerman/Martin case.

    October 30, 2012 | Registered CommenterDave Knechel

    Love this. I, too, have worked for a group of radiologists for 28 years now and I hear all kinds of stories. The best thing I can ever do is just listen and I do not take sides. I think that just comes naturally with age. I still love to read everything that you write and will continue to do so. By the way, my son lives in Washington, D.C. and actually kept his power. Please have a wonderful afternoon Dave as you well deserve it and don't ever stop writing, you are so gifted.

    [It's the same in every business, Cindy. Even in churches, there are cliques and petty arguments. As for writing, I don't want to give it up, and I won't, but I may consider other options, like writing on another site and posting links to it here, like I did when I wrote for Orlando magazine during the Anthony trial. I really don't want to go that route, though.

    Thank you. Your words are very encouraging. I truly enjoy writing and I'm glad it shows.]

    October 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCindy Edenfield

    I found your blog during the insanity of the Casey Anthony trial. Your personal stories, along with your "uncommon" common sense, a strong desire for justice, and your gift of writing has kept me coming back. I rarely post but am always reading.

    As a side, my mother worked as a cook after my father left and was able to raise five children by herself. The restaurant business involves a lot of hard work, is an honorable endeavor, and deserves our respect.

    Keep up the exceptional work!

    [Those days were insane, alright! I'll bet you I wrote 300 articles about that case, but I never did tally them up. I'm glad you kept coming back, InTheGarden. That means a lot to me. I put a lot of work into my writing and I'm glad it showed. Things are different now with this Zimmerman case, but I'm sure I'll keep plugging at it. Your words are very reassuring, believe me.

    I loved the restaurant business! Yes, it was a lot of work, but I was in great shape back then. How did I know that eating all those hot dogs and hamburgers, not to mention fries and milkshakes, would give me so much grief later on? If I had to do it all over again, I would, but I'd eat more salads. I never would have let that special girl go, either. Oh well, it as an honest job and I, too, have a lot of respect for people in the industry. I have great memories!

    Thank you, it's nice to know you find my work to be exceptional. I do have my moments...]

    October 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterInTheGarden

    Dave~~ I always enjoy reading your articles. I went back and read all the articles you wrote prior to the Anthony case and don't think I missed any. You do so well with human interest stories too and keep the attention of the reader. This is a talent that not all writers have. Keep up the good work. As long as you keep writing, I will be reading.

    [I'll keep plugging, that's for sure. I do plan on continuing coverage of the Zimmerman case, but I haven't decided whether it will be for publication here or for another site. I will definitely be writing more human interest stories as time goes on, but right now, I've got a lot to think about.

    Thanks, Snoopy. I'm not going to just go away, that's for sure.]

    October 30, 2012 | Registered CommenterSnoopySleuth

    I started reading your blog with the Casey Anthony case-I have found that your blog is the cleanest, straight forward and respectful. I came in at the tale end of the argument, but hopefully Hurricane Sandy has made everyone realize that there are more important things in life-like reading such a great blog!

    [Thank you, Whistlersmother. I will admit that I haven't been as unbiased as I should be when it comes to this Zimmerman case, but I am going to try to even things out. Not completely, mind you, because I still believe Zimmerman was totally wrong. As I've said all along, the guy never should have gotten out of his truck with a gun. No one asked him to go look for an address. Instead, he went looking for trouble. That's the gist of it and nothing will change my mind.

    One thing I will guarantee... there will be no more arguments on this blog. No more personal attacks or anything that resembles it. If people want to do that, there are plenty of forums for it. Plus, there are multitudes of media sites that allow frivolous and insulting back and forth banter. I don't expect this place to be heavenly, but it sure won't be nasty or petty. Simple disagreements? Yes, but I want people like you; people who won't turn on a dime and provoke others.]

    October 30, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterWhistlersmother

    I am glad your fight with Snoopy seems over. Truce! And yes, it would be great if you would publish the write-up of last Friday's hearing and the Judge's order from Monday! You attended court and I am sure your perspective is unique.

    I live in NYC and I feel for your long-lost friends and relatives in NJ. Sandy was an incredible storm....everyone s trying to recover and forge ahead.

    Truth be told, I have had a lot of second thoughts about this case. Initially, I fell in with the family's narrative. Then facts started to be told and Rev Al was nowhere in sight. Since then, I have come to doubt that I knew the whole truth about Trayvon, his families, Crump, etc, Being a NYC liberal, it was hard to question it all.

    I hope you continue to report and find a way to be more objective (if you can). I'd love to find a local Florida blog that presents the speculation and subjective reports. Less of you and more of Trayvon---good, bad, or indifferent, is what I hope to read at your blog. Keep up the good work!

    Thanks, Dave!!

    [Hi, max - I will have to be the first person to say this mess is not any one person's fault. It's an amalgamation of sorts, with occasional unsavory byproducts that come with merging a lot of ingredients. Sometimes the recipe works; sometimes it doesn't. If anyone is to blame, it's me. I pour the salt and pepper, and I allow others to stir the pot, with mixed results. It's the nature of a blog. I just need to be more attentive.

    Oh my, NYC... I hope you are well and have all necessities. I have a friend who lives in lower Manhattan and we IM'd the night of the storm. She was fine, but I haven't heard a word since. I'm sure she's fine, but I doubt she has power. I will admit, I'm a bit worried. Fortunately, all of my friends and relatives in NJ are safe. Most are without electricity, but they are alive and well. That's all that matters.

    I think it's good that Sharpton is no longer in sight. I attended the rally in Sanford and all I heard him ask for was justice. OK, fine, we all want that. The bottom line is that we don't know how the mess will come down, but I believe his role was to bring the shooting to the forefront and then step out of the way, which is what he did. If there's a racial issue, I think it points to the city of Sanford and not necessarily Zimmerman because there's no way to prove he was racist. To that extent, it's unprovable, so there's no point in anyone arguing it either way. Wth Trayvon, I just don't see him as the violent sort, but even if he was the attacker, what provoked him? Who provoked him? A man with a gun? Trayvon had no idea the guy was armed and he had a right to defend himself against his aggressor. By aggressor, I mean the dude who got out of his vehicle without provocation.

    As for Ben Crump, he has every right to open his mouth as anyone in the Zimmerman family, including friends like the Ostermans. This is really a fact and has no bearing on my opinion of this case. Even if a gag order were imposed, it would have no affect on these people. It is up to us to believe any of what they have to say. I find it unusual that anyone, from either side, would have anything to say that could possible be regarded as factual since no one else was present at the time of the shooting. In that sense, it is rhetoric and nothing more. We can decide which side to take, but it's there for the public to discern.

    While I try to remain open minded, I cannot simply shrug off the question about why Zimmerman got out of his vehicle with a loaded gun. That one will evade me throughout this case because I will not buy into his story that the dispatcher asked him for an address. That's the same excuse he's used over and over and over again, and I've yet to hear it on the recording from his initial NEN phone call that night. If he can give me a viable REASON, not excuse, I may begin to see his side better, but I am not going to hold my breath.

    Meanwhile, I will continue to report as best I can. Somewhere. If my articles seem slanted, then it's the nature of the media beast. I do try to see the forest between the trees, though. As for less of me, I hope I don't have to write another post like this one, but I will if things get out of hand again. That one will be my final last article on the Zimmerman case. At least, on this blog.

    Thank you, max.]

    October 31, 2012 | Unregistered Commentermax

    Dave this is truly a remarkable blog. You are always fair and considerate to everyone,even those who criticise you. As you know I wanted to respond to some of the comments that got my goat but refrained,because of my respect for you. I did consider the source of those comments when I cooled off and have only pity for those that have that type of negative outlook. I'll most definately continue to read here and will try not to take offense when someone makes unkind comments about you or any one here.

    I didn't read here during the Anthony mess as I just recently found you. Maybe I'll go back and read some of that.

    Have a beautiful day and God bless you.

    [Thank you, Tommy's Mom - I know you wanted to respond, but enough ugliness had spread that it didn't need to go anywhere else. Sometimes, I have a lot of patience. Sometimes, I don't. This was one of those times I, thank goodness, did, and we're all better for it. Hopefully, there will be no more offensive comments. Better yet, I will say right here and now that there will be no more offensive comments because the delete button is primed and ready to be pushed without warning. It will. Everyone is free to comment, but be forewarned! My button finger is neutral. It takes no side.

    I'm very glad you like my blog and I want to keep it VERY likable. I want people to be comfortable here and that is a big part of my mission. If you find something offensive, do what you've been doing - email me! There's a huge difference between disagreements and ugliness and I think we can all agree they are clearly distinguishable.

    By all means, go back and read the old posts, but don't bore yourself! I brought some over from my old blog, but I think I'm going to open them back up over there. That's where most of the earlier comments are. It was quite lively!

    Again, thank you. My day is fine, and may God bless you, too.]

    October 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTommy's Mom

    Dave. it is always a good idea to keep your options open. Having said that, as I have told you many times try not to let this stuff frustrate you. Blind justice and swift action is your friend though. Above all, insist that people respect this fine product that you have. I appreciate your efforts my friend.

    [Oh, I've got a lot of options at the moment, Porky3100, and my door is wide open. I know I shouldn't let this frustrate me, but I can't help it. I put so much time and effort into what I write and within minutes, it all comes tumbling down. I refuse to stand for it anymore. That's it! On the other hand, it's my friends that keep me motivated. That and the people who simply come in to read what I write and what people have to say in the majority of the comments. The worst fear to me is that they will denigrate others and destroy my message.

    I know you appreciate my efforts, my friend, and that is truly appreciated. Thank you.]

    October 31, 2012 | Registered CommenterPorky3100

    Dave ~~I have been surfing a few other blogs on the Zimmerman case and ran across something I found interesting so I have a couple questions that maybe you or someone can answer. It is off topic but want to ask while it is still fresh on my mind.

    I realize that the defense can file a motion to request a change of venue if and when this case goes to trial. Can the state file a motion to ask for a change of venue? Can the judge override both the defense and state and make the decision on her own, sans any motions being filed by either side, and rule on a venue change? In other words, does the court have this authority?

    In the meantime, I will do a search for the answer but appreciate any help you can provide.

    An aside~~some things are sent to try us. I do not, nor ever have considered you to be Humpty Dumpty so would not bother to keep the King's horses and men on retainer. lol Now I am hoping that came out right but hopefully you get the idea. I am trying to dodge thunder and heavy rain from the remnants of Sandy.

    [I have to run out for a few things, but I'm pretty sure the State can't ask for a change of venue. It would be tantamount to requesting that the case be handed to a different state attorney; a different court district, but I'll check that out when I get back.]

    October 31, 2012 | Registered CommenterSnoopySleuth

    While it is possible a prosecution could ask for a change of venue, it's highly improbable and odds are less that a court would grant such a request. Why would the stae want one? The cost is almost prohibitive and the state would have to have strong reasons why in order to convince the court.

    Defendants are the ones that think they can't get a fair trial. I think the state would be better off asking the defense to request one if that's the situation at hand. Surely, if the state feels the defendant can't get a fair trial, the defense would mmost surely agree.

    F.S. 47.191 Change of venue; payment of costs.—No change of venue shall be granted except on condition that the movant, unless otherwise provided by the order of transfer, shall pay all costs that have accrued in the action including the required transfer fee. No change is effective until the costs are paid.

    Are taxpayers willing to foot the bill for a state request? I don't think so. Florida law goes on to state:

    F.S. 47.101 Change of venue; application.—
    (1) If a party desires a change of venue he or she may move therefor stating the belief that he or she will not receive a fair trial in the court where the action is pending:
    (a) Because the adverse party has an undue influence over the minds of the inhabitants of the county.
    (b) Because movant is so odious to the inhabitants of the county that he or she could not receive a fair trial.
    (2) Such motion shall be verified and filed not less than 10 days after the action is at issue unless good cause is shown for failure to so file. It shall set forth the facts on which the motion is based and be supported by affidavits of at least two reputable citizens of the county not of kin to the defendant or his or her attorney.

    You see, it's all about a fair trial, and the state would most assuredly think the trial could be held in the county of the alleged crime. There's also the option of losing jurisdiction over the case. The defense doesn't need to worry about that. (That's the way I see it, anyway.)

    October 31, 2012 | Registered CommenterDave Knechel

    Dave ~~thanks for all that info. I am taking your time away from writing your next post so no rush in responding to my questions. I do appreciate it tho. The reason I was interested in the change of venue is because I am wondering if the defense would want the trial to take place in Seminole County and it would be the prosecution who may like to see it in another county.

    Judge Nelson did specify in the her Order denying the gag motion that the court did have tools available to ensure an impartial jury. It also led me to believe that the court has the authority to have a change of venue

    Order Denying State's Second Motion for Gag Order

    [I know it doesn't say so directly in the order, but by the court having tools, it generally means they are available to the defense and prosecution. The court would oversee a change of venue if a motion is filed, for instance, and voir dire, but it won't initiate or control them. Only under extreme conditions would the court take action to supplant either side.

    In my next post, I will incorporate the order denying the second gag order and, later on, I will address the change of venue.]

    October 31, 2012 | Registered CommenterSnoopySleuth

    One or my comments didn't post for some reason. I probably did something wrong. I wanted you to know I would never be unkind to anyone,ever. I would speak up for what I consider a snide comment about you or others like myself who share your opinion of what Zimmerman did,and there have been plenty on this blog as well as others.

    On another note I'm not at all sure justice will be found for Trayvon. IMHO The Anthony trial brought no justice for Caylee. The fact that CMA is the most hated woman on the planet I suppose is a form of justice. Zimmerman's case could turn out the same way.

    [Comments have a tendency to disappear or show up one or two days later in moderation and it's just the nature of the beast. There are no wayward comments anywhere now. Unfortunately, I have no control over it, but I always tell everyone to write their comments in Notepad or something and copy & paste them here. That way, if they get swallowed up somewhere, you have the original and you can try again.

    I wouldn't base this case on anything else and, most definitely, not Casey Anthony. As far as I'm concerned, they are both hated, but in some circles, Zimmerman is considered the second coming. It's interesting because most of those people are white, Aryan-like and racist, yet Zimmerman refuses to consider himself white. He's a proud Hispanic. I guess that's OK to those people because he's still whiter than black. Not that I'm trying to start trouble or anything, but how else would anyone explain their bias? Gun rights? Just legally owning a gun does not make Zimmerman right. So did Colin Ferguson, mass murderer.

    Anyway, you don't strike me as an unkind person at all, so don't ever worry about your comments being screened by me. Don't feel hurt if they don't show up, either. It's not something I would do under normal conditions and, as far as I'm concerned, we are back to normal.]

    October 31, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTommy's Mom

    Dave and all~~here is something of interest... Following is a portion of the article...the letter to Judge Nelson from José Baez is at the link I am providing...

    Jose Baez's name has now come up in the case against George Zimmerman.

    Casey Anthony's former attorney has written a letter to the judge presiding over Zimmerman's murder trial for the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
    Baez said Zimmerman prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda was wrong when he argued that Baez was held in contempt of court during the Casey Anthony murder trial

    During a gag order hearing Friday, de la Rionda argued that Baez was held in contempt, because of comments he made to the media.

    Read it all here...

    Jose Baez: Zimmerman prosecutor's statements 'completely false'

    [When de la Rionda made that statement in court about Baez being held in contempt of court, we all looked at each other and shook our heads. He wasn't held in contempt. What made it worse was that de la Rionda said it was for something Baez said to the media and that's what really got our attention.

    I'm not surprised Baez wrote a letter to the court. I think I would have done the same thing, and no matter what anyone thinks about him, he's still a licensed attorney.]

    November 1, 2012 | Registered CommenterSnoopySleuth

    Good to see the blog back to where it should I'm not making light of what happened when I say that. It just seems sometimes a "clearing of the air" is necessary.

    I know GZ was not doing to well in life prior to this. I sit and wonder even if I should put this in a comment personal opinion is that Osterman is the worst thing that happened to Zimmerman. I haven't read Osterman's book but did watch him on the Dr. Phil show. To me, Osterman is just scary. Now he's the one that influenced GZ in getting a gun because of a dog???? It went from there to GZ, GZ's wife, and Osterman and his wife going to the gun range and emerging into that "we gotta get the bad guys" mentality. I'm not trying to excuse GZ's action but wonder if GZ would have gotten a gun if not influenced by "his best friend".

    Just thinkin.

    [Oh, there has been a clearing alright, Newbie. It's all too clear. Sparse is more like it.

    You may be right about the influence Osterman had over Zimmerman changing him in a bad way. Heck, pepper spray would have stopped the dog in his tracks. It would have stopped his "alleged" attacker, too. I'm telling you, Osterman couldn't have convinced ME to buy a gun, but Zimmerman? Yup, he's a real wimp inside. Mentally unstable and easy to influence, obviously.

    I like the way you think. Thanks.]

    November 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNewbie

    Snoops, I didn't see your discovery concerning Baez's letter to the Judge. Baez got his two cents in for sure. Things must be too quiet Baez's way.

    I didn't think de la rionda was prepared to argue the matter of the gag order. He rambled and was all of the place. I'm wondering if he should be going up against O'Mara.

    November 1, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNewbie

    Newbie~~I found De La Rionda hyper and a bit disorganized. It was hard to follow him when he argued the motion. I didn't pick up on him mentioning Baez being held in contempt for going before the media. I will bet he would love to be involved in the Zimmerman case. I expect De La Rionda would be good at cross examining witnesses. He would scare the whole truth and nothing but the truth out of them

    November 1, 2012 | Registered CommenterSnoopySleuth

    Here is over two hours of the hearing... if anyone wants to refresh their memory or have missed seeing it all...

    George Zimmerman Hearing 10-26-12

    November 1, 2012 | Registered CommenterSnoopySleuth

    Beautiful post, Dave. Truly lovely writing.

    [Thank you, nemerinys. I really appreciate that. Now, I just hope my blog settles down and people return to a safe place. People were getting way too personal and begrudging.]

    November 2, 2012 | Registered Commenternemerinys

    Dave, Just visiting to say, As difficult as it must have been for you to do, you have illustrated the utmost courage in your decision to bring about unity and respect for those immediately involved, readers and new commenters, to visit your blog home and enjoy your posts as well as each other by exchanging conversation and knowledgable opinions. I greatly admire and appreciate a man of character who conveys his message of required and valued good conduct in attempting to expand kindness and the respect everyone likes to receive but sometimes forgets to extend . Best wishes for deserved appreciation for your informative posts here and in all your journalistic endeavors.

    [I get a lot of new readers each day, New Puppy, and comments are a very integral part of this blog. If these people come in and see fighting, they won't come back. Heck, I know that some people come in to read the comments and not my posts. That's fine, but petty arguments are not.

    If there is another time, I will pack my bags and move somewhere else to write. I will turn this blog into something else, and I don't want to have to do that. Thanks, my friend. Please know that you are always welcome here. You have never started a bit of trouble.]

    November 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNew Puppy

    Hell.o Dave, I have just read this post and you have just made my day. I have always enjoyed your blog so much.I come to your blog because ypour posts are always extremely well written, non biased and you explain the leagaleze in a way even I can understand..I have always enjoyed reading the comments too. Lately I had to stop reading the comments because I felt I was entering a war zone. I read Snoops blog too because she too, like you keeps it real. I did not like the way she was treated so now I can come back and enjoy your posts. I'm sorry you had to go through that battle but it is like old times now. Posts and comments are a pleasure to read again. Thank you Dave, now I have some reading to catch up on. Keep on keeping on ,you are a real gifted writer and photographer.

    November 17, 2012 | Registered Commentermargaret

    I am always happy when I can help make someone's day, Margaret! You made me feel pretty good, too, so thank you.

    I will say I try to be unbiased, but the George Zimmerman case really perplexes me. I mean, his stories aren't adding up, and that's a real problem. Unfortunately, the comments get very heated on this case because of guns, gun rights and pure racism. It's too bad because this is really about an adult killing a minor and why it turned out that way.

    I seemed to have calmed the storm a little with this post and I hope it stays that way. If not, I will slam the door shut again. What people need to know is that this is my house, not theirs. It is not a boxing ring or a house where insults can be tossed around freely.

    Calling me a gifted writer and photographer is very, very nice of you. Thank you for such a nice compliment, and thank you for just being you. It is ALWAYS a pleasure to see you.

    November 18, 2012 | Registered CommenterDave Knechel

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