Columnists
A column writer, not a columnist
By David Hall
Oct 18, 2020
Print this page
Email this article

I've been writing these columns for over a year now, I consider myself to be a column writer and not a columnist. I think of a real columnist as someone who can put a column together in a real short time, knows the ins and outs of a computer, and doesn't have to but most likely writes columns for a profession. 

My computer expertise is mainly limited to e-mailing and researching, in fact I do not own nor want a computer. I know I'm in the minority there, or at least it seems that way. I'm a very early riser, it seems like some of my best thinking is done early in the morning. I have gotten more curious as I have gotten older, most likely I would be getting up and down throughout the night wanting to research something or to send an an e-mail. My friend Sam and I have talked about being more curious now than when we were in school, it seems to be more enjoyable to look up something these days because we want to rather than back when that was part of a school assignment. I've used our area library's computers for years and its always worked for me, I will continue that way.

In fact two different people offered to buy me a computer, I thanked them but told them but I really don't want a computer free or otherwise. Several people have also told me that about the time they buy a computer it's almost outdated, our area libraries will most always have updated computers.

I think any writer has similar problems no matter whether they're writing books, columns for newspapers, plays, scripts for radio or television shows, songs, or whatever. I know sometime thoughts come to me fairly easily and sometimes not, at times I can put a column together fairly quickly and some others just take lots of time and research.

Another thing I've noticed is many times I can think of something that should've been included and it's always after I've sent my column to eNews. I try not to let that happen but it has happened several times.

Some random thoughts on previous columns:

Left out of my last column about restaurant servers having a tough job: If you get excellent service in one of your favorite restaurants ask for that same server the next time you eat there. By doing that you will let the server and their boss know they did a good job, you will not only get good service again but you will make a new friend. Getting a good meal in a restaurant can be a pleasant experience, having a new friend as your server can make it even better.  

"I Goofed" 9-13-20 --- I decide to write a column on class reunions which I know quite a bit about since I've worked on them for over forty years. Other times I write columns that take quite a bit of research, after writing such a column the previous week I wanted to write one that wouldn't require much research. I put together what I thought was a pretty good column, however a friend told me that some of my column she thought she had read before. I told her some parts of it maybe had been in some other column I had written, well it turned out that my column was almost identical to one from just a few months earlier. After trying to decide what to do I thought I should write a column just to explain my goof as I really didn't have time to research another column. That was just one of many mistakes I have made, however I hope to not make that same mistake again.

"The Internet - Very Helpful But Use Caution" 8-30-20 --- Be especially cautious, it seems the scammers get more deceitful all the time. Just in the last month I've gotten around twenty five e-mails saying that my Yahoo account would be shut down if I didn't update all my information. They are just wanting to get all the personal information they can so they can use it for their own benefit. One giveaway is that many of  those replies come from e-mail addresses other than Yahoo, if Yahoo had problem with an account the e-mail about about that problem should be coming from an official Yahoo address. As the old saying goes "If it sounds too good to be true it most likely is." The internet is a very valuable tool, however it could be so much better without all the scammers. Hopefully someday soon laws will be enacted so as to make scamming not as attractive to those people that do it.

"The Other Cole" 8-16-20 --- Usually I have some kind of an idea about some future columns that I hope to write, the idea for this column came to me very quickly with the death of Freddy Cole who was Nat King Cole's brother. Nat King Cole was always my favorite singer as far as easy listening music goes, I regret that I never got to see Nat in person and I never even knew about Freddy. Another favorite singer of mine who sings the easy listening type music is Johnny Mathis, I did get to see him perform in Dallas one time and I'll never forget that.

"Friendship" 8-2-20 ---I can't think of the word friendship without thinking about my lifelong friend Sam, to me his lifelong friendship is a real treasure. He's very computer savvy and first taught me about  how to research on the computer and send e-mails as well plus he has helped me in many ways on all our class reunion work through the years. There is a quote that says "One Of God's Greatest Gifts To Us Is The Gift Of Friendship," that's very true.

"Some Real Columnists" 5-4- 20 --- That column was mainly about three real columnists that I have a great deal of respect for, some of you may not know that Ed Southerland passed away in July. Ed was a brilliant writer and a tremendous loss to our area, he worked at our local Sherman paper on two different occasions plus he wrote for North Texas eNews. I don't think the Herald Democrat ever really realized the treasure they had working there. Ed was always friendly when I would talk with him but sometimes he would walk right past me without speaking, as I got to know him better I thought he was just probably in deep thought when we passed and he didn't even see me. 

My first two columns were about the Leonard Picnic and then later I wrote one titled "Andy, Mayberry, and Me" --- as I've told some of my classmates many times I think those days we grew up in were simpler, but in some ways better.

I've also written some columns about both the law enforcement profession and our military veterans, My experiences as an Auxiliary Police Officer gave me some material for those columns as well as a special respect for that profession in general. I never served in the military but I have several friends that did, listening to their stories has given me an insight into some of what all the brave men and women (past and present) of our nation's military services have done and continue to do to keep ALL of us safe.

The columns I write are not near as serious as a lot of columnists write, mine are mainly written to help people recall some good memories or maybe just to be informative. They are not literary masterpieces and are not intended to be, however I hope readers enjoy them and some may even help North Texas eNews get a few more readers. I've never met Allen in person but I consider him a friend, I admire all the dedication and long hours he puts into providing our area with a quality news source. Years ago a lot of small town newspapers had a lot of local human interest news stories but many are different today, however North Texas eNews has a lot of the type of journalism we miss from what many of us call "the good old days." 

If you have any comments or questions my e-mail address is deh63shs@yahoo.com.