A few weeks back, we ran a front page story announcing the addition of Ross Martin to The Citizen staff. To hear more from Ross himself, who started June 12, scroll down this page a little further. To hear more from me, read on. Over the years, I’ve hired a multitude of folks here at The Citizen. The positions they have filled include advertising manager, graphic designer, reporter, photographer, labeler, delivery person..... the list goes on. But I’ve never hired a managing editor before. And that’s the position that Ross will fill here at The Citizen. His duties will include overseeing all aspects of the day-to-day operation of The Citizen. You may be asking: well, if Ross is going to do that job, what are you going to do, Lee? That’s a good question and all I can tell you right now is this: there’s more news you don’t want to miss coming in next week’s issue. Stay tuned. ••••••••••••••• Speaking of Ross, the past several days he has repeatedly told me he is going to convert me into a soccer fan. Of course, with the World Cup going on, soccer is a big topic. It seems like Ross isn’t the only one telling me — and other non-soccer fans — what a great game soccer is. A column in Tuesday’s KC Star by Sam Mellinger pointed out what all we soccer “haters” missed out on Monday night during the wild watch party of the U.S. team’s opening-round Cup match at the Power & Light District in downtown KC. The tone was slightly indignant and its aim — at least as I took it — was to antagonize sports fans who are not soccer fans. I get that soccer is big news, like I said, with the World Cup going on. I get that it is a patriotic thing to cheer on Team USA. Everybody looks good in red, white and blue. I get that soccer is a big hit in Kansas City, what with Sporting KC winning a championship last year. Everybody likes a winner. This I don’t get: telling non-soccer fans that they are somehow missing out on something. Using this logic, because I don’t like seafood, if I order a steak at Red Lobster I’m missing out? Because I don’t like Miley Cyrus or Lady Gaga, I’m missing out by not watching the Grammys? Using reverse logic, because I’m a golf fan, did anyone who is not miss out when they didn’t watch the U.S. Open last weekend? Of course not. So, memo to all you soccer fans out there: good for you, enjoy the World Cup and scream your lungs out this season at the really cool Sporting Park whenever a soccer player acts like he has been dropped by a sniper when another player runs into him. For the record: I’m not a soccer hater. I’m just not interested in it one way or the other. The right word is apathetic. ••••••••••••••• While I’m on the topic of sports, I guess I’m going to have to start giving the Royals a little credit. This will make Citizen ad manager Pam Ulitschan happy. Pam has told me more than once recently that the only time I tweet about the Royals it’s negative. I can’t argue the point. I have been a diehard Royals fan for more than four decades and will be until the day I leave this world, but the past few years I have been increasingly less tolerant of the Boys in Blue. I don’t care that they won 86 games last year; the way I look at it, they didn’t make the playoffs (for the 28th consecutive year) so it doesn’t matter how many games they won. Then, of course, this year their offense was so putrid for so long that many observers wondered if they were going to set an all-time record for home-run-hitting futility. And they still might, but they have been better offensively the last few weeks or so. As of this writing, the Royals had won eight games in a row, 13 of 17 and were trying to vault into first place this late in the season since the fluke year of 2003 (you may recall they didn’t make the playoffs then, either). They are excelling in all phases: hitting, hitting with power, pitching and defense. Could this finally be the season when the Royals deliver for all their long-suffering fans? Maybe, it’s a long season and who knows how it’s going to play out. But if they do, they might actually get a little of the benefit of the doubt next season that they think they deserve this season. ••••••••••••••• For years, we here at The Citizen have called Dearborn Board of Aldermen meetings the Monday Night Fights. After reading Jeanette Browning Faubion’s report on the Platte County Jail Expansion Committee’s tour of the jail Monday night and the heated words between some members of the committee that ensued, we may have a new contender for the title. Stay tuned. Thanks for reading.
Lee Stubbs is owner/publisher of The Citizen. He may be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 858-5154. Follow him on Twitter @leejstubbs.