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Bark better than bite

On Your Marc Katz by Marc Ka OK, I’m relatively new to this, writing about pets. I don’t have one, and hardly ever did except for a brief period during my childhood when my two brothers and I had a dog for about a year who became too big for the yard, was given away […]

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Dear Ella, a love letter

The Bucher household always had dogs. Of course, I don’t remember our first pet because I was sort of little, but I do have pictures to back it up.
There was Tuffy, and later Tuffy II, both Boston Terriers.
Chevy and Chase, a couple of mutts, showed up at our door one day and immediately adopted us.
Then, Tinkerbelle the Boxer lived almost 16 years. If you’re a canine lover, you know not long enough. 
Cut now to 2016, and my French bulldog, Ella, is my current best friend.
She’s all white, 16 pounds of non-stop energy, always greeting me at the door or near my feet at all times. 
I’ve written in these very same pages before about her, and the unconditional love we receive from our four-legged friends.
Oh yes, my daughters have cats, though you know a cat isn’t anything like a dog – meaning cats are on their own terms. You want to hold one, but they’re not in the mood. If you get comfy on a couch, that’s when the friendly feline uses your body as a bed. It’s when they say so.
I would never play favorites with my kids, but cats and dogs…different story.
Going on the record to say Ella is the 
chosen one.
Googling life spans of Frenchies was pretty dismaying. They’re somewhere between 10 and 12 years—that’s in human years. Wish I wouldn’t have looked. 
Ella is now 8 going on 9, and in the back of my mind, I dread the day “it” happens: the final trip to the vet. 
This conjures up vivid memories of the last go-around with our Boxer. She was suffering a myriad of health issues which made it palatable to “do the right thing,” even though my selfishness to keep her around by “all means necessary,” almost got the best 
of me.
I can imagine you folks out there, who’ve been through it, know it is not fun to see your companion, take his, or her, last breath. It’s something burned into the human hard drive of memories you want to forget, then can’t.
It’s a damned-if-you-do or damned-if-you-don’t scenario. Should I leave the room or stay? Do I witness the procedure of humanely putting her down or wonder the rest of my life how it went?
I’m telling you, it’s the most difficult decision ever. 
Now, some out there would call me crazy, but you dog lovers know exactly what I’m talking about. The bonds, the loyalty and love are equaled by none. NONE!
So now, as Ella approaches her senior years, thought I’d take this time in Dayton City Paper’s Pet Edition to pen a love letter to my beloved. 
Many times we don’t share how or what we really think of someone until it’s too late:
It’s your human daddy here. Want to thank you for all the great years we’ve shared. Don’t know how I would have made it through without you. It’s been a challenge sometimes, though, with what seemed like a losing battle—potty training. 
And as a puppy getting into everything, you shouldn’t have included yummy cat treats from the litter box. 
There was the time of a communication breakdown, when we ended up injecting you twice with a vaccination that swelled you up like a Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade balloon. 
There were great walks we’d take and your fearlessness toward any dog no matter what size, all to protect your master.
Every 20 feet marking your territory with a little spritz and scratching the earth beneath to show others who’s boss.
The crazy thing you’d do at the top of the basement stairs. Dropping your ball, so I’d pick it up and play.
All you did your entire life was to please me.
When I was lying in bed ill, you were there by my feet, or just plopped your butt next to my legs, as if to say, “Life is gonna be fine.” 
The burger we’d share coming from the vet or groomers, for being a “good girl.” 
The time you took on three dogs in the front of the house, their owner flailing and tangled in a twisted mess of leashes.
There’s more, but you get it. You are the greatest friend ever. Even when your owner comes home in a bad mood, you’re ready to please.
“Thanks” is not enough. 
Know this: I will be the best daddy the rest of your days. 
Here’s to many more hamburgers, walks, and territory marking.
Love you, my friend.



by Jim Bucher The Bucher household always had dogs. Of course, I don’t remember our first pet because I was sort of little, but I do have pictures to back it up. There was Tuffy, and later Tuffy II, both Boston Terriers. Chevy and Chase, a couple of mutts, showed up at our door one […]

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Conspiracy Theorist: 7/26

From Venezuela to the US By Mark Luedtke Self-serving leftists point to Sweden and Norway as examples where socialism supposedly works while conveniently ignoring places like Cuba and Venezuela where it obviously doesn’t. This is a false argument. Socialism doesn’t work in Sweden or Norway. Sweden and Norway are fascist welfare states much like the […]

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On Your Marc: 7/26

I choose you, Ball of Fame By Marc Katz Pokemon GO? Really? You need a cell phone. You need a location. What the heck are you looking for, anyway? And when you find it, what do you have? “Travel between the real world and the virtual world of Pokemon with Pokemon GO for iPhone and […]

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On The Beat: 7/26

Who ya’ gonna call…again? By Jim Bucher OK, I’m the first to admit  I  wasn’t really big on a “Ghostbusters” reboot. It wasn’t the female cast, but rather “how dare they even think about touching one of my all-time favorites.” It amazes me how fanatic fans get so hyped-up over a movie. Theatregoers dressed as […]

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Debate Forum: 7/26

Get my good side States weigh public access to police footage Should recordings from police body and dashboard cameras be considered public records?   By Sarah Sidlow Should recordings from police body and dashboard cameras be considered public record? North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory says “no.” Last week, he signed a controversial bill into law that many say will make it very difficult for body and […]

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The Docket: 7/19

Dayton’s police blotter, reported verbatim Compiled by Ehron Ostendorf Pregnancy ploy A woman called in saying she was fighting over child support with her ex. She said she had one child with this man and was expecting their second. They appeared to have an on again off again relationship. The caller accused her ex of […]

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Conspiracy Theorist: 7/19

Clinton guilty (again) Mark Luedtke If Donald Trump had carelessly made classified information vulnerable to Russian and Chinese hackers and the FBI found out about it, he’d never see the outside of a prison cell again. Government would seize all his property, leaving his family destitute. Leftists would cheer his political assassination, a warning to […]

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On Your Marc: 7/19

Be careful where you launder By Marc Katz Not to go all profiling on you, but there is a reason why restaurants are sometimes named after the kinds of food they serve. You go to a Chinese restaurant to eat Chinese food. You go to an Italian restaurant for Italian food, and so on. I […]

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Debate Forum: 7/19/16

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Sit down, G.I. Jane Should women be blocked from registering for the draft? By Sarah Sidlow U.S. Rep. Warren Davidson is the new guy in the office. Just a month into his new job left vacant by retired House Speaker John Boehner, Davidson snagged his first win: a block on the provision that would require […]

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The Docket: 8/30

Regional police blotters, reported and interpretedby By Ehron Ostendorf Feeding for two The owner of a store said a woman […]

Debate Forum: 8/23


For rent Can Ohio’s national park be “leased” for drilling? By Sarah Sidlow Quick quiz: name the only national forest […]

On The Beat: 8/23

Roadside fruit stands, where art thou? By Jim Bucher Think the older you get, the more nostalgic. Guess it’s all […]

On Your Marc: 8/23

No character like McVie By Marc Katz I know, there were iconic entertainment groups that played early in their careers […]

Debate Forum: 8/16/16


For the love of the game Olympic athletes have big dreams, but empty wallets—Should the government step in? By Sarah […]