Friday, January 30, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Bob Dunning: This new kid might have a future

BobDunning2W

By
From page A2 | August 31, 2014 |

I opened the paper last Sunday and, what to my wondering eyes did appear, but a brand-new Davis Enterprise columnist splashed all across the top half of the Forum section.

I’ll say this, the new guy is certainly wordy. I mean, I’d have to call ahead and alert the guys in the press room if I ever tried to use that many words in a single column.

His name is Dan Wolk and his column is cleverly titled “The Mayor’s Corner.”

Corner? Looks to me like he plans to take over the whole neighborhood.

The column features an obligatory mug shot of our new hire, who, for some crazy reason, prefers to wear his sunglasses on top of his head.

I don’t know much about this “Dan Wolk” character other than the fact he appears to be young, good-looking and apparently has an excellent dentist.

Probably a recent graduate of Stanford’s journalism school who fast-talked his way into a columnist’s gig at Davis’ most prestigious daily newspaper.

Good for him. But since I’ve been at this daily grind precisely 45 years longer than he has, I’m not against giving him a bit of friendly advice. It’s the least I can do for a comrade in ink.

The first thing that has to go is that photo. Much too friendly. It appears as if he’s sitting on a Whoopie Cushion and is about to bust out into a full guffaw. I’m not saying he should necessarily look menacing, but a little edginess could go a long way toward building a serious readership.

He does have a very manly vein running right down the middle of his forehead that he could use to huge advantage if he’d just wipe that smile off his face.

OK, enough on his physical appearance. Let’s just say if I can make it in this business (see photo above), Dan should be a lock.

“This is the first installment of a monthly column I am calling The Mayor’s Corner,“ his first effort begins in the factual, straightforward manner they teach at Stanford.
But monthly doesn’t cut it. He’ll never build a regular audience with a column only once every 30 days. By the time he reaches retirement age, he’ll barely have scratched the surface of all the topics there are to write about in this wild and crazy town.

Besides, this is a newspaper, with emphasis on the word “news,” which derives from the word “new,” which, in the world of journalism, means “current.”

If terrorists dump Red Dye No. 3 in the Davis water supply to celebrate Valentine’s Day, it won’t be much good to have Dan comment on it a month later on St. Patrick’s Day, when the terrorists will have already switched to Green Dye No. 17.

I’d recommend a daily column, or at least three times a week. Trust me, in this town, it’s easy. Davis, in fact, is the very definition of a “target-rich” environment.

“Our new City Council was sworn in just a little over a month ago and already we have made a significant degree of headway on a number of issues.”

Quick, honey, grab the No-Doz.

First off, “headway” is not measured in degrees, but in pounds. The proper term would be that you have made a significant “amount” of headway.

Also, tell us a bit more about this “new council,” such as “This new guy, Robb Davis, makes me nervous. He got a ton of votes in the last election and I’m afraid he might run against me for my mom’s seat in the State Senate.”

You want readers? Now you have readers.

“The City Council has unanimously devised a rate structure that is simple and equitable.”

Fine, but it would be much more interesting if he said “Those Measure P supporters are a tough bunch to please, but if they don’t like our new water rates, they can go pound sand.”

“The City Council has been making progress on the very important task of hiring a new city manager.”

How about “We’re still ticked off about that turncoat Steve Pinkerton taking a job in Nevada and leaving us to deal with this water mess all by ourselves. Whoever we hire now will want an ungodly sum of money to run this town.”

And let’s dissect that paragraph about the city’s new poet laureate, where Dan says he will “welcome the inimitable Dr. Andy Jones to ply his craft for a two-year term.”

If Dan ever hopes to build an audience on my side of the tracks, he simply can’t use words like “inimitable.” Two syllables is the absolute maximum.

“I hope you’ve enjoyed this first installment of The Mayor’s Corner.”

Big mistake, Dan. Never ask the readers what they think of your column. That’s just asking for trouble.

— Entries to the Contest to Replace the Above-Pictured Columnist are due on Monday, Sept. 8, at 5 p.m. Entries, between 400 and 800 words, can be emailed to [email protected] and should include a short biography and mug shot of the author.

Comments

comments

.

News

Suspected Ebola patient being treated at UCD Med Center

By San Francisco Chronicle | From Page: A1

 
Town hall focuses on Coordinated Care Initiative

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1

Schools give parents tools to help kids thrive

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Need a new best friend?

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A2 | Gallery

 
Stanford University to get $50 million to produce vaccines

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

Two more cases of measles in Northern California in children

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Dartmouth bans hard liquor

By New York Times News Service | From Page: A2

 
Walkers head out three times weekly

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3Comments are off for this post

Free tax preparation service begins Monday

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

 
Vote for your favorites in Readers’ Choice poll

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

No bare bottoms, thanks to CommuniCare’s Diaper Drive

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Storyteller relies on nature as his subject on Saturday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Still time to purchase tickets for DHS Cabaret

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
All voices welcome at sing-along Wednesday

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Great Chefs Program will feature Mulvaney

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

 
Take a photo tour of Cuba at Flyway Nights talk

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
February science fun set at Explorit

By Lisa Justice | From Page: A6 | Gallery

See wigeons, curlews and meadowlarks at city wetlands

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8 | Gallery

 
.

Forum

Time for bed … with Grandma

By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

 
Protect root zone to save trees

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

Weigh quality of life, density

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
Olive expert joins St. James event

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

We’re grateful for bingo proceeds

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A10

 
Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A10

 
A ‘new deal’ for the WPA building

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10

.

Sports

Mustangs hold off UCD women

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
UCD men set new school D-I era win record

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

UCD has another tough football schedule in 2015

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

 
Gould’s influence felt mightily in recent Super Bowls

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

Sharks double up Ducks

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Sports briefs: Watney, Woods start slow at TPC Scottsdale

By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2

Recall that first Aggie TV game, national title?

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B8 | Gallery

 
.

Features

.

Arts

‘Song of the Sea’ is an enchanting fable

By Derrick Bang | From Page: A11 | Gallery

 
‘Artist’s Connection’ launches on DCTV

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11

 
Gross’ paintings highlight a slice of Northern California

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12 | Gallery

February show at YoloArts’ Gallery 625 is ‘Food for Thought’

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A12 | Gallery

 
.

Business

.

Obituaries

.

Comics

Comics: Friday, January 30, 2015

By Creator | From Page: A9