You never get a second chance to make a good first impression.
That thought went through my head as I sat in the Norwalk council chambers making a terrible first impression on the olfactory sense of everyone around me.
"Something smells like gas," said Norwalk clerk of council Lisa Hivnor.
"Yeah, it really does," someone else confirmed.
It was me, the new reporter on the Norwalk beat. Washing with soap did little to nothing to remove the toxic stench from my hands and arms.
On my way to Tuesday's meeting, my first, I stopped at a gas station to refuel my car. After swiping my credit card and inserting the nozzle into my gas tank, I went inside to buy a soda.
Returning to the car after making my purchase, I saw gasoline gushing from the side of my Toyota. The automatic shut off had failed and so I had to grab up the spout, which gave my arms a brief but exciting bath in the combustible liquid.
Someone sitting behind me at the meeting said the fumes were intoxicating. Another attendee joked that a careless match might find me if I wrote something bad.
"Gas man." That's my new nickname at the office. Feel free to call me that anytime.
-- Cory Frolik
Pile of papers
When I attend a council meeting, I get a little discouraged when the agenda looks pretty full.
So when I walked into the Clyde Council meeting Tuesday, I noticed some council members were commenting on the inch-thick agenda and pile of ordinances.
While I thought that was a large number of ordinances, apparently I was wrong.
Becky Brooks, editor of the Clyde Enterprise, has been covering council meetings for years and said it's been much worse in the past.
"You guys used to come in here with box loads of ordinances," she said.
I just hope that the council members don't take that to heart.
An inch-thick stack of papers is better than a box load any day.
Chief justice is a Strickland fan
Whatever else Gov. Ted Strickland accomplished in his State of the State speech, he managed to make a Sandusky native happy -- Chief Justice Thomas Moyer of the Ohio Supreme Court.
Moyer, asked by reporters Thursday about one of Strickland's policies, replied that "After yesterday, I don't worry about anything the governor says."
After a moment, the chief justice appeared to realize reporters might wonder what he meant. Moyer explained that he was pleased when Strickland praised Moyer for his efforts to help Ohioans facing foreclosure on their homes.
Moyer said he didn't mean to suggest he is publicly endorsing everything the governor wants to do. It would not be appropriate for newspapers to run headlines such as "Moyer supports governor's bond program," he said.
-- Tom Jackson