• March 22, 2023

HE’S BACK THEN GONE

So, I’m like Dick Van Dyke or Bob Barker or Sally Jesse Raphael. You’re surprised I’m still around.

Well, I’m not dead and the only thing I’m gonna bury is the lede.

As someone well-skilled in Irish exits, I’m not one for long goodbyes. Nothing worse than when you’re trying to go home and your friend, your spouse, your ride, tells you they just want to say goodbye to a couple of people. But you know, it’s not a goodbye, it’s a hello. And you’re going nowhere anytime soon.

I’ve gone outside and sat in a car, waiting, and then waiting some more, slowly steaming, taking deep breaths, thinking if it’s time I go back in there and make a scene. Can we please effin go?

But you know that’s such a bad play, you just can’t do that. You might go back in and hope the murderous vibe coming from your eyes and every pore is enough to get the long goodbyer to wrap it up. But it’s tricky.

You gotta try to send that vibe without anyone else noticing. But after a minute, you realize your telepathic game is weak. You feel your angry tomato face start to form. But you really don’t want anyone saying, oh look, he’s mad. Then you’re the bad guy. Then the 45-minutes goodbye is nothing compared to the embarrassment you caused. It’ll be a terrible ride home.

Anyway, I’m 250 words deep in this column and I feel the vibe. Some of you are already in the car starting to steam up. When’s this guy gonna get to the point?

Well, goodbye. I’m gone. Done. Kaput. Retired (more or less).

The Rockaway Times was born eight and a half years ago and now I’m handing off the paper to a family of locals I love.

Why? It’s time. Which happens to be a repeat of the first ever headline in the first ever edition of The Rockaway Times back in June 2014. It was time to start a paper then, and it’s time now to tell my story walking.

Pat McVeigh was my right-hand for the most important years of the paper as The Rockaway Times got its legs. I couldn’t be more trusting of her and husband, Tom, their son Sean, her sister Jeanne and brother-in-law, Jay Ferriola, as they become the new publishers of The Rockaway Times.

I owe it to all of you to leave The Rockaway Times in the best of hands.

Your support and loyalty has meant the world to me. And I’ll always remember those who were there at the start (especially Kathy Boyle). And so many who joined along the way. Truly.

Of course, it wasn’t always a happy rainbow bus ride. I’ve lost some readers along the way. When I said men who wear button pajamas might be serial killers…when I said my mother’s pork chops looked like they came from Chernobyl…and when I said The Big Bang Theory sitcom is not funny (at all, ever), some people never spoke to me again. In some cases, I’ve been happy for the silent treatment.

Anyway, as I slink away, if I’m not Dick Van Dyke, I’ve been the aging ballplayer who’s been carried by the all-stars around him. My staff– Fred, Katie, Mary Ellen, and Monica¬–will carry on, without having to carry me.

So, what’s next? I dunno. Maybe I’ll bike cross country. Maybe I’ll look for a job–though why look for another when I’ve had the best job here. I plan on writing occasional Boyleing Points and I’m hoping to see my name in the Word Search one day.

What else? I suppose, to start, I’ll navel gaze (there’s a lot of lint in there), think about playing pickle ball, and get crazy crushing beers and discussing Medicare A, B and C all day long (as long as the day ends before dark). That’s one way of saying, the void ahead is a void. Might as well limp into it, full steam ahead.

That’s all I’ve got, except to say….

I wish I could give you all a hug. Only kidding. Hold the hugs but see ya around.

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