PHIL IN THE BLANK: History lessons

I cover a lot of cool stories here at the Clarkston News, but the most interesting are about those who have been around a while, who remember the history of Clarkston. Hilda Lowrie, featured on page 18, certainly qualifies. She will soon celebrate her 100th birthday with her family. She shared with me many memories […]

PHIL IN THE BLANK: De mini-what?

“Substantial compliance with the law.” This was one of a couple legal concepts/phrases brought up at the special meeting of the City Council last week. City attorney Thomas Ryan mentioned it when discussing the shifting deadlines lately for candidates interested in running for City Council. I might have scoffed to myself. “Substantial compliance?” I’ll be […]

PHIL IN THE BLANK: Vandals near and far

Two suspects are under investigation in last week’s vandalism case out by birdland off Maybee Road. They’re juveniles, which was considered most likely amongst commenters on our social media. Vandals spraypainted crudely rendered, light-blue Nazi symbols over everything, as well as other things like a peace symbol, which would be nice if it weren’t on […]

PHIL IN THE BLANK: Birthday bash

I’ll be celebrating my birthday on Friday in town this year. I’ve been going south for a summer break the past few years to visit family in Alabama. It was getting to be routine, heading down to Huntsville and spending Father’s Day with my dad and brother, my June 22 birthday with family, then Hamacon, […]

PHIL IN THE BLANK: Eighties enough

The film “Karate Kid” hit theaters on my 15th birthday, June 22, 1984. I was about the same age Daniel LaRusso and Johnny Lawrence were supposed to be, though actor Ralph Macchio in particular was quite a bit older. Like Daniel and Johnny, I was a student of the martial arts, at a karate studio […]


Congratulations to Team RUSH students, coaches, mentors, and volunteers on their hard work this season, earning the world championship title in Detroit! I met with some of them last October, when they were coaching robotics for the elementary kids – the Junior FIRST Lego League. Coach Kyle Hughes told me they had their sights set […]

PHIL IN THE BLANK: Because I’m Batman

Some unexpectedly warm and snowfree weather a couple weekends ago left me with a decision to make. Ohayocon, an anime (Japanese animation) convention, was coming up in Columbus, Ohio. I usually preregister for these conventions but stopped doing that for this one because it’s always scheduled in January. I reserved a ticket for it in […]

PHIL IN THE BLANK: Teachable moment?

Principal Gary Kaul described perfectly the circumstances behind Dr. Rod Rock’s decision to resign as superintendent. It’s a betrayal. He chose to engage in whatever happened in this “inappropriate” relationship with a former Clarkston High School student, over and despite his obligations as superintendent which he knew so well. It seems to be very inexplicable, […]

PHIL IN THE BLANK: So long ’17

This year went by fast, as usual. Parking was a big issue in downtown Clarkston at the beginning of the year and it still is now. There have been a few setbacks. I remember keeping a lookout daily for that parking kiosk to show up at Washington and Main every day in July, then in […]

PHIL IN THE BLANK: Closing time

The curtain has fallen (or more like slid across the stage) on the Clarkston Village Players show I’ve been working with, “Morning’s At Seven.” It’s my fourth production so far, all with CVP within the last couple years. Its closing leaves me with the same bittersweet sense of accomplishment and loss I’ve felt with the […]

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