October 5th - 12th
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The Power of the Written Word

From the time I learned to read, I have loved the written word. It came as no surprise to anyone when the twists and turns of life led me to a job as a reporter after I retired from the military. I'd done a lot of writing while I was in the Army, but there wasn’t a lot of art or creativity involved in writing op plans, regulations and military lesson plans. The job of staff writer on a newspaper challenged me on a different level. In the news business it was imperative that the writer present both sides of an issue without obvious prejudice. The more I wrote, the more I came to appreciate just how critical it was to report not “just the facts” but to put them in context as well.

These days it seems that the standards for journalism, at least in some venues, are slipping. Writers for every Internet service seem to have turned to writing headlines that are more titillating than they are accurate. Headlines such as "Was It Suicide?" or "Dog Mauls Man" may be attention-grabbers, but they can be extremely misleading and in many cases that is no accident. A sub-head to the suicide headline might say "Officials investigate death of (insert famous person's name)." Those two lines taken individually seemingly are innocuous, but used together leave the reader believing someone suspects that the famous person actually killed himself. In fact there may be no reason to suspect suicide, but the artful phrasing of the headlines likely will start a lot of unnecessary and often hurtful speculation.

Read more: 2011 March

Farewell to a Treasured Friend

The sad news arrived by email this morning. Another of our long-time members was gone. This one brought me to tears.

Jane Jeter was one of those people who I considered to be a special friend. I know I'm not alone.

Before I became involved with the Review, I didn't know Jane. I knew her name of course, but not much about her. Then in the course of something related to the Review, I needed her help and gave her a call. I'm guessing it was about Dual Title awards, as Jane was the chair of that committee.

That one call was the start of a relationship that I will always treasure. Jane and I found we had many friends and many experiences in common, and just as many different life lessons that we shared with each other. We didn't always agree, sometime having entirely different philosophies. But we respected each other and learned by seeing things from each other's perspective.

Read more: 2011 February

A New Year's Gift to You

Happy New Year all you lovers of German Shepherd Dogs! We hope you all had a wonderful holiday season.  We also hope that you all have renewed your membership to the GSDCA, otherwise you won't be reading the Review next month.

The Parent Club has a New Year's gift for Review advertisers. Effective immediately, all single-page and larger ads will be uploaded to the Review portion of the PC web site (Check It Out) for one month at no charge. This is a work in progress as Webmaster Pam Stoesser  works with us at the Review to devise the best method for making these ads available on-line. You may have seen our early trial run that went up in December. Many of you did find it, and we've received some helpful feedback as a result. Nothing is set in stone at this point, and all your comments are welcome.  Some of our advertisers already have inquired about keeping their ads on the site past the first free month. The Budget & Finance Committee will discuss that and bring it to the Board of Directors at the January meeting. Look for an update in the Board O Gram and on this page.

Read more: 2011 January

The 2010 National in Utah

What a fun National we had this year! After all the worries of bad weather and rumors of inconvenient facilities, it still turned out well. And I have to say it was one of the "friendlier" nationals I've attended. For some reason we didn't hear nearly as much complaining, and I saw a lot of friendly gestures and chatting going on, and hardly any sour faces.

Of course the weather had a lot to do with it. If Bill Burggraaf had placed a special order with the weather gods, it couldn't have been much better. I know there were some people who were cold when they were washing dogs early in the morning, but guess what? That is a fact of life at many, many shows across the country. Maybe those of you who live in the south don't experience that as often as others, but it can and does happen everywhere.

Once the sun rose a little higher in the sky the days were absolutely lovely. Warm enough to be very comfortable, but not so hot we couldn't leave a dog in the car for a bit now and then. And certainly not so hot that we had to worry about the dogs working outside, say in the herding arena.

Read more: 2010 November/December