By Steve Murch
I don’t know if it’s because the daylight is lasting longer or that spring is less than three months away (can’t get too optimistic) or that I have beaten the winter doldrums, but I’ve been in a better mood and seem to have more energy. So we’ll see where this takes us …
- As the left moves farther left and the right moves farther right, I feel like centrists like me are becoming an island. I’ve always joked that I hate both sides equally, but nowadays that seems to be more of a reality than a joke. Ross Douthat had a New York Times column on Tuesday, “What’s Left of the Center-Left,” where he wondered if the Democratic Party even needed the center-left. To some degree what is happening with the Dems rise of less-traditional people being elected is similar to what happened with the GOP, first with the Tea Party and then with the rise of Trump. We need the center-left and center-right to help balance our country, otherwise we are going to see dramatic swings left and right as one side pisses off the other and the offended party makes a push to take over.
- When someone younger than me like actor Luke Perry, at 52 years old, has a stroke and dies it gets my attention. I wouldn’t say it serves as a wake-up call for me, as I go to the doctor twice a year, but it does remind me of all the bad things I keep doing health-wise and that I need to be more diligent. I had a high school friend die of a heart attack at the age of 50 and those kinds of things stick with me. We lost touch after our freshman year of college, but it still sticks with you when you hear of someone you know dying at such a young age. Perry’s stroke happened less than two weeks before my annual physical, so that gives me more to think about.
- I’m a big fan of Michael Connelly’s novels, especially the Harry Bosch books. I was hesitant about watching the series when it came out on Amazon Prime Video because so many times there are enough changes to the characters’ back stories that it’s like you’re watching entirely different characters. And, the problem with the Bosch series was that in the books, Bosch is older and had fought in Vietnam. Connelly is one of the executive producers, so there was the feeling that if would stay true to the character even if there were changes. The series is a bit of hybrid with Bosch being younger and having fought in the Gulf War. But much of the back story with relationships is true to the book. I’m looking forward to April when season five is available. I’d put Bosch on par with the BBC’s “Luther” as my favorite cop shows.
- I have all the respect in the world for LeBron James’ talent and what he has accomplished. However, I am enjoying this year’s Los Angeles Lakers’ failure as much as everyone else. I think it’s the entirety of the team failing that makes this so much fun. The arrogance, and to a degree ignorance, of the organization and its fans makes me smile every time there is another meltdown. However, while I don’t believe in conspiracy theories, I just have this gut feeling that somehow the Lakers will beat the odds and hit the top pick in the NBA lottery and then we have to deal with the Zion Williamson to L.A. hype that would follow.
Steve Murch is a former managing editor and award-winning columnist for The Alpena News. He’s a lifelong Michigan resident, a broken and defeated fan of the Detroit Lions and a forever optimistic fan of the Detroit Tigers. His column will appear most Thursdays.