Sure to sell out as fast as the Apple Watch

Here's a scoop for you.

In tomorrow's Reading Eagle, editor Harry Deitz, whom everybody is jealous of, will announce the impending publication of a book that all of Berks County has been clamoring for.

It is a collection of columns written by Harry Deitz, a whopping 109 of them, including 60 photos, some of which have never been published before!

The volume (first in a series?) will cover such hot-button topics, sure to excite readers, as Harry's grandkids, pink flamingos, civility, spring housecleaning, and, of course, the weather.

The project all started when Harry had a designer (on the company clock?) design a booklet that collected some of his favorite columns, which he presented to his family as (cheap) Christmas gifts. ("Thanks, granddad, but I'd rather some socks.") 

The idea so impressed CEO Peter Barbey that he got all tingly inside:

"What a wonderful launch for REP!"

And so the reborn Reading Eagle Press will have its first best-seller.

Ever humble, Harry told his staff he doesn't care his book sells one copy or a thousand. 

Even if it sells zero (most likely) Harry's grandkids have something to look forward to next Christmas. 


Harry Deitz thinks you are all so jealous because he is the editor and you are just a bunch of lowly readers

Those who awoke Sunday to a morning constitutional, a cup of coffee, and a dose of Harry Deitz were treated to what might seem like gloating.

Under a column headlined "Editor envy is somewhat of an honor," the editor, Harry Deitz, bloviated at great length about how "some of the second-guessers and critics envy my job, because they don't hesitate to share how well they could do it."

Come on, really? Nobody could fulfill the duties of editor quite like Harry Deitz because while readers might think the role of a newspaper is to report the news, in fact, Sir harry reveals, "Our simple agenda is to make our community a better place to live."

So why doesn't the Reading Eagle spill a little ink on the move to open a community health center in Reading to serve thousands of poor people?

Steve Reinbrecht, a former staffer, asked that very question in a letter to the editor that criticized the saturation coverage given instead to the rehab center for the stars, the Caron Foundation:

I don’t understand the news judgment here. Why does the paper feature a boutique center that I expect will serve mostly wealthy people, perhaps from all over the country or world, rather than something that will more effectively improve the health of the entire community?

You will not read that paragraph in the morning paper.

That's because editorial page editor Jim Homan shot back to Steve, "I can’t use the portion where you’re questioning our news judgment. The publisher will not allow that.”

Sadly, it seems, despite the editor's "opportunity to have a significant, positive and lasting impact" in "a job that many people would love to have," one power the editor does not have is determining what will be published on the editorial page in the letters to the editor.

That is the role of the meddlesome publisher, who simply cannot allow the decisions of his staff to be challenged. Or else it is a simple way for Homan to pass the buck.

Either way, it makes the conclusion of the  Deitz piece on editor envy particularly ludicrous: "That's why we listen to our critics and take some pride in how important they consider our jobs as editors."

Harry Deitz announces thrilling new hiring policy that will prevent the Reading Eagle from ever hiring anyone like him again

STOP THE PRESSES! Hold the pixels! This is news. This is huge.

You will not read all about it in the morning paper, but Harry Deitz called a staff meeting earlier this month and the big news wasn't the launch of a new touristy-type division, Pretzel City Productions, whose first production will be a Roy Rogers tribute (good luck selling out that) whose opening act will be the guy (Dave Kline) who heads the new division.

Nope. The big news was a policy change aimed at reforming the company's good-old-boys, backslapping hiring practices. Hence, the newspaper will no longer allow staffers to feather the payroll with relatives who will work under their wing doing, perhaps, very, very little work.

Staffers are calling this the no-no-nepotism policy.

In the past and present, payroll padding covered departments ranging from union shops (engravers) through advertising (the Woolwines) through promotions & marketing (the Ernestos).

But did you know...

Harry Deitz Jr. was himself a throw-in to the deal that brought his daddy, the "smokin' Shamokin" Harry Deitz Sr., to the Eagle in the mid-'70s. The Eagle wanted to lure the veteran Harry Sr., the greenhorn Harry Jr. needed a job, and wet-behind-the-ears Harry was like the minor-league prospect necessary to sweeten the pot.

Older staffers at the Eagle are laughing their nuts off over the irony.

They only wish the policy change was retroactive.

Reading Eagle reader proves once and for all that Obama is a fake president

Michelle Bachmann could not do it. Donald Trump couldn't either. But, today, an astute reader of our morning newspaper has provided conclusive evidence that Barack Hussein Obama is not a United States citizen and thus is ineligible for the presidency.

Mr. Boehner, be prepared to swing your impeachment gavel.

Here is the complete text of that blockbuster epistle:


I agree with what you printed regarding the eligibility of a person who wishes to run for president ("Law clear for 62 years as to who can run for presidency," Reading Eagle, Feb. 10). I have argued against those who profess otherwise.

However I have always held that the birth certificate that was released by the White House was inaccurate. The birth certificate that was released lists President Barack Obama's birth as Aug. 4, 1961, and lists his father, 25, as being born in Kenya. This wouldn't be seen as anything of concern, except the fact that Kenya did not exist until 1963, two years after Obama was born. How could Obama's father been born in a country that did not yet exist?

Kenya was formed in 1963 and was known as the British East Africa Protectorate.

On the birth certificate, the listed place of birth is Kapi'olani Maternity & Gynecological Hospital. This is another error as the hospitals in question were called KauiKeolani Children's Hospital and Kapi'olani Maternity Home. The name did not change until a 1978 merger.

My feeling is that an original birth certificate did not exist, and when one was created these obvious mistakes were made.

Another fact was Obama's father was listed as African-American, a term that was not used at that time.

I just find it incredulous that facts such as these are blatantly overlooked and not dispelled.

Leon Mull

Ruscombmanor Township

To which, editorial page editor Jim "polyester" Homan added one dig/correction:

Editor's note: The colony of Kenya was established in 1920. The East African Protectorate existed from 1895 to 1920.

Quibble, quibble. This is the most earth-shaking, bone-shattering piece of information the Eagle will deliver until, well, tomorrow, when Harry Deitz will share pooplets of humor about how delightful it was observing his grandkids get potty trained. Watch for it.

Meanwhile blog followers, you can fact check yourself with this copy of the long-form released by the White House:

But what do we really know about this Leon Mull fellow? Is he a true-blue American trying to rescue America from Kenyan-Muslim tyranny? Or is he a spy for Putin? He doesn't appear to be on Facebook, and his Google footprint is meager, just a link to another letter to the editor about veterans.

What other pearls can Mr. Mull share? What does he know about the 9/11 false-flag conspiracy? The world is listening.

Become a designated driver at the Reading Craft Beer Festival, pay only $20 to get in

Would you like to get stinking drunk sampling more than 100 craft beers over three or four hours?

Who wouldn't?

But just who is going to get all those slobbering alkies home from the Santander Arena after the Reading Craft Beer Festival ends its first run on the Saturday afternoon of April 18?

The organizers had a swell idea!

Offer a special deal for designated drivers in addition to the deluxe ducats for the boozehounds.

Here's the shakedown:

That lounge furniture seals the deal.

Everything in Africa is immense (especially Africa)

Ever since I was a lad in sister school, I have been familiar with a map of the world that looks like this:

It is called a Mercator projection, probably because it was designed by some chap named Mercator, and it is considered (by whom?) the best way to project a representation of a globe on a wall. Now, thanks to a website called IFL Science, we learn that it is just cartoon cartography.

Just how big do you figure Africa is?

Bigger than the United States? About the same size as China? Five Australias?

Go to a globe and check right now. (You don't have a globe? Oh.)

After spending 62 years on this good Earth, not one day of which was spent in Africa, I discovered something startling that was lurking right under my nose. 

Africa is one damn big continent.

Just how big? Lookee here:

Drawn to correct scale, you can fit inside Africa a whole lot of land...the United States, China, India, most of Europe, and have room left over for maybe ten Chris Christies and perhaps a chunk of Mars.

Mercator's got some 'splaining to do.

There's got to be a bar bet in there somewhere.