Reporter's Note Pad by Jason M. Reynolds en-us Honoring veterans Someone accused the T-G today of not providing any coverage of veterans. To paraphrase a co-worker, I would stack our coverage against any other paper our size in Tennessee. A fast search of the word veteran in our online archives yielded a number of results going back the past year, including (but not limited to): Bob Fullerton, a veteran of the Korean War: God & Country followup: God & Country preview:... Tue, 16 Aug 2016 15:20:01 -0500 Who are you? Who, who, who, who? To borrow from the song "Who Are You," I want to know who you are -- first and last name. The Times-Gazette is very happy to run your submissions in many cases. One of the basic things we need to know is who is involved, be it a picture or story. Specifically, we need first and last names. That's true of photos (unless it's a crowd), and it's true of teachers. (Students may need to address the teacher by Mr. or Ms. Doe, as a matter of courtesy given the kids' age and the teacher's... Tue, 02 Feb 2016 10:28:49 -0600 My bad Do you ever get so busy you forget to do something? That happened to me earlier this week when I was writing a story for Sunday's Life section on people who are working for Christmas. I had the idea for the story after talking to Miguel Gonzalez, owner of the tasty Taco Plus restaurant on Madison Street. Miguel makes everything from scratch, even his tortillas. He told me how he was going to be open on Christmas mainly because he is slammed with orders for tamales, a Mexican holiday staple.... Fri, 18 Dec 2015 15:30:08 -0600 Receiving feedback on a story on convicted murderer You never know what sort of response -- if any -- you will receive on a story. Sometimes you don't hear anything, which can be disheartening when you think you have written something interesting. I received an email this morning about a column I published last Sunday. The story was on a recent book I had reviewed: "Death on Hold." The book is about Mitchell Rutledge, a convicted murderer in Alabama who had his sentence reduced from the death penalty to life without parole. Rutledge became a... Mon, 31 Aug 2015 15:07:44 -0500 Conspiracy theories Do. Not. Believe. Everything. You. Read. That may seem odd coming from a person who makes a living from writing. But there's a lot of junk "information" out there. You may not trust the "liberal media" or the "right-wing media." But that does not mean every blogger or person who comments on a post is correct. I could claim on a blog that I saw a giant Martian kidnap my co-worker, but that does not mean my statement is true. I could speculate on something or another that I observed, or... Mon, 13 Apr 2015 10:30:57 -0500 Stealing from the graveyard A woman called me this afternoon with a heartbreaking story. She had placed flowers on her parents' tombstones over the weekend at Willow Mount Cemetery. The graves are at the front of the cemetery. By Sunday, the flowers had been stolen. The silk flowers were attached tightly over the top of the tombstones, she said, so they could not have blown off. The lady, who did not wish to identify herself, said she spent $85 on the arrangement. Since she is on a fixed income, that's especially a... Mon, 15 Dec 2014 15:50:22 -0600 Help finding a job In my reporting, I've run across a couple of great resources lately for people who are looking for a job. The first is the Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development has a website, It is free to use and does not sell your email address to advertisers. Applicants who use the site can provide only the information they want potential employers to see. An applicant with experience in more than one type of career can create multiple accounts for each occupation. Also,... Fri, 05 Sep 2014 08:35:32 -0500 School talk Superintendent Don Embry has started a new feature on the school system's website, The Superintendent Newsletter provides news of interest to parents and students. The topics include a variety of features the Times-Gazette has reported on, from the new dress code to a more relaxed policy on students' personal use of technology devices. Don also provides important dates for the year and details on the school messenger system. I urge you to go to the school... Fri, 15 Aug 2014 14:42:01 -0500 Here's your sign David Carroll, an iconic TV journalist in my hometown of Chattanooga (OK, I'm from nearby Cleveland, but not everyone knows Cleveland) posted an excellent blog today. Carroll's topic is leaving children in hot cars. Here is the lede from his post: "I like to think I'm an even-tempered guy. My family would tell you I don't yell much. I've worked in the chaotic world of broadcasting for decades, and I think I've been in only two shouting matches. But lately, I want to say something... Thu, 31 Jul 2014 08:45:10 -0500 Set the rules for Monopoly Up through April 3, you can help choose the house rules for Monopoly, via Facebook. Ten rules up for debate are posted at The top rules will make it into the House Rules Edition that will be available in the fall. They'll also be in the classic Monopoly's game guide in 2015, although officially the rules will not change. Wed, 26 Mar 2014 10:11:21 -0500 Black history and the walking horse industry The Times-Gazette received this message from the Walking Horse Museum in Wartrace concerning Black History Month: Do you know Frank & Judy White, Fluff, Keith Nance, Howard Mayberry, Buck Williams, Flip Cook, Ivory Nelson, Forty, Red Walls, Vanoy Streeter, Frank Witherspoon, Soot Streeter or the Rippy's and many of the other greats in the Walking Horse world? In observance of Black History month, bring your stories, pictures and memorabilia to the Tennessee Walking Horse National Museum... Fri, 21 Feb 2014 08:43:46 -0600 Use your clout to help others This is an excerpt from a book review that will run Sunday. The book is "Clout," by Jenni Catron. Jenni Catron defines clout as a combination of gifts, experiences and opportunities that God gives a person and how it can be unleashed for others. Clout is power and influence. And Catron wants to help people use their clout to help others to be healthy leaders, whatever their roles in life and work. A Christian can use her clout whether she works at a religious or secular company, Catron... Thu, 13 Feb 2014 08:55:07 -0600 A teacher's busy day Sunday's Times-Gazette will feature a story about Terri Overcast, a second-grade teacher at Cascade. I spent the day with Terri recently to watch her do her job. She is an exceptional teacher, as are so many educators who are hard workers who do their best for students. Terri was literally on her feet nearly every second during school. I've worked jobs like that, and it's hard. But imagine having to stay positive and think on your feet (pun intended) while helping all those children day... Wed, 05 Feb 2014 14:39:56 -0600 Will there be toys for Christmas? There are a lot of charities struggling to help local people this Christmas season. The ones that provide toys are especially struggling. U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots continues to put out the call for donations. "We desperately need help helping the children," said Kenneth B. Crowell, Toys for Tots coordinator. Crowell is a retired U.S. Marine Corps colonel. All donations stay here in Bedford County, Crowell said. In fact, he frequently brings toys here from the Marine Reserve... Wed, 04 Dec 2013 10:12:21 -0600 End of literary era: Tom Clancy dies You anticipate encountering the unexpected at times in the news business, but every so often, a piece of news just totally shocks you. That very thing happened to me minutes ago. Tom Clancy, author of "The Hunt for Red October" and many other bestsellers, has died at age 66. No cause of death was given. Clancy was one of my earliest contemporary literary heroes. While I loved reading military accounts in high school, they mostly were old books written by World War II vets based on their... Wed, 02 Oct 2013 13:25:06 -0500 Where were you on 9/11? To quote the Alan Jackson song, where were you on 9/11 when the world stopped turning? Life moved on for most Americans after that day that defies description, even though things were never the same. For the families of the victims and those who directly experienced the terrorist attacks, life was forever altered in a radical way. I say that day defies description, because to merely call it horrific does not fully convey the full scope of the tragedy. When the attacks happened, I was... Wed, 11 Sep 2013 09:12:18 -0500 Community students need help replacing stolen equipment Casey Burrahm, the yearbook advisor at Community Middle, informed me about a large need. Her students' yearbook equipment was stolen over the summer, and the students are trying to replace it. They held an online fundraiser and replaced the laptop; they are holding another fundraiser online to replace other equipment, such as their camera. Here is the website: If you're not into online payments, I'm sure they would be happy to accept a donation in... Thu, 05 Sep 2013 13:35:00 -0500 When news happens I worked very meticulously last week on a story about July 4 fireworks stands and community shows. You can read the story here: But then the weather failed to cooperate and two of the community shows I featured were re-scheduled. Staff Writer Brian Mosely learned Tullahoma had rescheduled its show. Then, we learned Shelbyville had as well. As of Wednesday afternoon, Bell Buckle was saying they plan to have their show, but will decide by 5 p.m. Thursday.... Wed, 03 Jul 2013 15:22:00 -0500 Do not call -- or text If you're like me, you hate to receive telemarketing calls. The only thing that's worse than a telemarketing call, in my opinion, is spam email or spam text. I've started to receive spam texts, and after one came in just before 2 this morning advertising a "free luv" website, I had had enough. I filed a complaint with the FCC this morning. Here's the website: You can file complaints for calls, texts or emails that come to your mobile phone (or calls to... Fri, 26 Apr 2013 09:38:19 -0500 Your right to know The public is only as informed about current events as the media is able to report on those events. Government officials and businesses that try to hide information are keeping you, the citizens and taxpayers, in the dark. While it's true that social media sites can spread news fast, much faster than a newspaper's print cycle, the reliability of such items can often be regarded as no more than gossip. Remember Tim Tebow's fake girlfriend, or the Notre Dame football player's fake lady... Mon, 01 Apr 2013 09:03:09 -0500