Every weekday morning from 5:30-9am, Charlie, Dave, and Art inform and entertain you.   It can be a delicate balance dealing with the important issues of the day and trying to have some fun at the same time.   We like to say we mix the “serious and the silly”.   You can judge whether it’s working or not! 

Email us at:
      charlie@wsgw.com      artlewis@wsgw.com

The Morning Team Blog

  • Detroit Tigers 2014 Season Perspective

    Detroit Tigers 2014 Perspective!

    (Charlie Rood) 

    Well, here we are in October, and our Tigers are still playing baseball.   When the season began in April, this was the goal.   Somehow, someway, play 162 games and be in a position to play some more.

    This is what I talked about at the beginning of the season.   Enduring the marathon.   Knowing that even if we had an incredible 100 win season, we would have to lose 62 times.   We finished 90-72.   Think about that.   Simply turn 10 games around and we have 100 wins.

    I'm sure we could find 10 games we should have won (or thought we should have won).   We know Joe Nathan blew 7 saves (more on him in a moment).   We know we blew a couple of seemingly comfortable leads even before the 9th inning.   We know we lost agonizing games, such as the 1-0 David Price one-hitter.

    On the other hand, we had a number of games we won that perhaps we should have lost.   I know because we enjoyed some great highlights from the seventh inning on when we came back to take leads and win games.

    We were frustrated by a stretch of games when our stellar starting pitching wasn't and our potent offense was impotent.   We also had some health issues which you never want to use as an excuse, but when guys like Cabrera aren't at their best, when Sanchez is lost for a time, when Andy Dirks and Bruce Rondon never played, you can't ignore that.

    HOWEVER, you may remember throughout the season as I offered up monthly perspectives, I told you I would tell you when it was time to worry, and I never did, because I was never worried.   Concerned a couple times, but never worried.

    I've played the game too long, listened and watched the game too long, and loved the game too long to ever get too high or too low during a season.   Generally, teams that have quality players will have a quality season.   That doesn't always mean the highest payroll or having the best player at every position.   Dare I mention the 1968 Tigers with Don Wert at 3b and Ray Oyler/Dick Tracewski/Tommy Matchick sharing short.   No wonder Mayo Smith had Mickey Stanley at short in the World Series!

    Here is some of what I wrote April 10:   "I'm thinking the Tigers win 93. That means 69 losses. That means we win just 24 more games than we lose. On average, if we win 15-16 games a month, we lose about 11."

    April:    14-9 (three rainouts)
    May:    17-12
    June:    14-13
    July:    13-13
    Aug:    16-15
    Sep:    16-10

    More from April 10 post: "Our new closer, Joe Nathan, has blown two save opportunities already this year. Concerned? No, not yet. On average, if a closer gets 50 save chances, he blows 5-10. Joe could now save seven games, blow another, save seven, blow another... and by the end of the season, maybe has 42 saves and 8 blown, and we'd be happy. Is that what will happen? Who knows? Maybe he just sucks and will be off the team by July."

    Joe Nathan at end of season:   35 save, 7 blown  (perhaps he could have got to 42-8...   and yes, a roller coaster ride...  just like Todd Jones...  but in the end, he did save 35)

    From April 10:   "Remember our strength is our starting pitching, and it just seems improbable we'll have any type of losing streak of 7-8 games which can really hurt a team, especially at the wrong time of the season".

    The worst losing streak we had was 5 games.   We had four, 4 game losing streaks.  

    In closing, from my April 10 post: "No guarantees on anything. That's why we play the games".

    And that's what I say about the post-season.   No guarantees.    It's also not a marathon anymore, it is a sprint!   Our Tigers have just a good a chance at winning the World Series as the other playoff teams.   Let the games begin!

    Having said that, you realize IF the Tigers were to win the first series in five games, you'll have to put up with two losses.   IF the Tigers were to win the ALCS and World Series in 7 games, you'll have to put up with three losses both times.

    Don't panic over losses.   We aren't going to go 11-0.

    And if we do lose, remember to appreciate the thrilling season it was, the fond memories we'll have, and the enjoyment we had because of a game.   Yes, in the end, baseball is just a game!    It's a better game when you win.....



  • The Bible and Baseball

    "The Bible and Baseball"

    (Charlie Rood -  May 9, 2014)


    On Saturday, May 10, the Detroit Tigers will participate in "Home Plate 2014".   Various groups will join the Tigers to experience a special pre-game program.

    "Home Plate 2014" is when several players (active and retired) will speak about their careers in baseball, and more importantly, their faith in Jesus Christ.

    Why do players do this?   Perhaps you've heard and seen many professional ball players  express thanks and praise to God after winning a game or playing well.   Cynics will say God had nothing to do with who won a game or how they played, that it's nothing more than a performance of talent and skill.   Faithful followers know it's God that blessed these players with the talent and skill, plus gifts, desire, and will to perform individually and as part of a team.

    During the baseball season, numerous road trips and games every Sunday don't allow players to regularly attend church services.    Many players on all teams are active in their faith through "Baseball Chapel".   

    Did you know "Baseball Chapel" got its start in Detroit?   In 1973, a sportswriter from Detroit approached the commissioner of baseball asking for permission to start a chapel for players.   "Baseball Chapel" has grown over the years to ballparks across North America, Latin America, and Japan.

    "Baseball Chapel" is for more than players.   It's for all staff, from front office executives to broadcasters.  

    The Tigers had a prime example of a broadcaster with faith by the name of Ernie Harwell.    On the radio, Ernie was the voice of Tigers baseball for many years.   He was loved by fans and players, making and maintaining numerous friendships throughout the baseball world.   Ernie was known to lead "Baseball Chapel" gatherings even before chapel received the blessings of the commissioner.

    I had the pleasure of interviewing Ernie a few times.   I once humbly thanked him for his commitment to Christ, as I was just starting to experience my walk with the Lord, and told him I was inspired by his faith.   I asked him what his secret was to his long and healthy life, his continued enjoyment of working in baseball, and the fact he and "Miss Lulu" (as he called his wife) were able to have such a successful marriage.  

    "It's no secret," Ernie said, "I'm faithful to God and that allows me to be faithful in everything else."

    At the start of every baseball season, when Ernie would broadcast the first spring training game, he would start by reciting a Biblical passage from the Song of Solomon, 2:11-12,  "For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone.  The flowers appear on the earth.   The time of the birds singing is come and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land"

    Miguel Cabrera of our Detroit Tigers has worn a T-shirt to practice that displays a fallen Jesus Christ with the cross on his back struggling to lift himself from the ground under the words "Lord's Gym."

    Longtime Tiger and Detroit native, Willie Horton, now hands out baseball cards with this inscription on the back:

    Much of my life has been spent striving to be the best baseball player I could be. I wanted to be like the Negro League heroes my Dad highly respected. At 20 years of age, I made my major league debut. While I enjoyed success on the baseball field, I found myself straying from the religious upbringing my parents sought to give me.

    In 2003, at the age of 60, a nephew of mine was battling cancer. I tried to talk with him about how he was feeling, and he told me not to worry about him. “You should be worrying about your own soul,” he said. His words hit me like a fastball to the ribs. I was stunned to receive a call a couple days later informing me that he had died of a heart attack. The day after attending his funeral, I received the news that another nephew had been tragically killed. At the church for his funeral, God’s message of love overwhelmed me. I knew it was time and I received Jesus Christ as my Savior.

    Happiness and joy surround my life these days. Along with working for the Detroit Tigers, I have the privilege of confessing the name of my Lord Jesus Christ. I find my daily strength in God’s Word. I have found a peace in my life. I’m closer to my team, my family and my God. My life seems complete.

    “What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul?” Matthew 16:26

    Willie Horton is scheduled to appear at this "Home Plate 2014" event.   His testimony is one of the reasons why I titled this message, "The Bible and Baseball".

    I pray it may help further strengthen your faith, renew your faith, or perhaps even start your faith, and in the future, perhaps the title will be:   "The Bible and You"!



  • Uncle Tom... what about it, Harry Reid

    "Uncle Tom"...  what about it, Harry Reid

    (Charlie Rood, May 1, 2014)


    Well that didn't take long, did it.

    In a post concerning Don Sterling on Wednesday, I wondered what will the NBA do "next time" there is an incident damaging to the league.   I stated - You know it's going to happen, just as it does in politics, in the entertainment world, or in ordinary life, there is always a "next time".

    From the world of politics (though I will tie it together with Sterling).....

    The Washington Post:   Representative Bennie Thompson (D-Miss.) on Wednesday stood by his remark that Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas is an "Uncle Tom" and continued to suggest that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's (R-Ky.) opposition to President Obama is race-based.

    In an interview with CNN, the Congressional Black Caucus member doubled down on his comments, first made over the weekend, that Thomas apparently "doesn’t like black people, he doesn’t like being black.” His comments were first reported by BuzzFeed.

    "Well if you look at his decisions on the court, they have been adverse to the minority community, and the people I represent have a real issue with an African American not being sensitive to those issues," Thompson told Dana Bash.

    Thompson cited Thomas siding with the conservative justices on the court -- of which he is a firm member -- upholding Voter ID laws and Michigan's ban on affirmative action. The court has also struck down part of the Voting Rights Act, which was first passed to prevent racial discrimination in elections.

    "The people that I represent, for the most part, have a real issue with those decisions," Thompson said. "All those issues are very important and for someone in the court who's African American and not sensitive to that is a real problem."

    Are you kidding me?   A member of congress using a racially insensitive term when talking about a Supreme Court Justice who he thinks isn't sensitive to a problem?   You are the problem, Representative Thompson.   Your disagreement with Justice Thomas cannot be taken seriously if you are going to do it using racially charged language.

    To take this a step further, how about this from Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid (from USA Today)...  

    U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid called out NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell Wednesday and said he has not taken a decisive stand against racism the way NBA commissioner Adam Silver has.

    Reid (D-Nevada) applauded Silver's lifetime ban on Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling for racist remarks against African-Americans and said Goodell should follow Silver's lead and force Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder to change his team's name.

    "I with almost all of America applaud the NBA's work to swiftly move to stamp out bigotry in its ranks," Reid said on the Senate floor, according to a rough transcript released by his office. "Commissioner Silver and the league have set the standard for how professional sports associations should act in the face of racism. I wonder … how the leadership of the National Football League, the NFL, that money-making machine, I wonder if they have taken notice of the NBA's decisive action. How long will the NFL continue to do nothing, zero, as one of its teams bears a name that inflicts so much pain on Native Americans?"

    Really, Mr. Reid?   What if we paraphrased your story this way...

    Senator Harry Reid was called out for not taking a decisive stand against racism the way the NBA commissioner has done.   Shouldn't Reid follow the the NBA and force Representative Thompson to change?

    We wonder how the leadership in Washington, that money-taking machine, if they have taken notice of the NBA's decision action.   How long will politicians continue to do nothing, zero, as one its own members uses a name that inflicts so much pain on African Americans?

    Yes, members of all politcal persuasion say stupid things and even use racially insenstive language.   It happens in sports, the world of entertainment, and life in general.   

    And you know what?   This will happen again, because there is always a "next time".



  • A stunning update on "If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor"

    A stunning update on "If you like your doctor you can keep your doctor"  (March 3, 2014)


    The stunner about this is revealed at the end.   From the Wall Street Journal Weekend Edition...

    This is from a memo written by White House aide Todd Stern regarding a draft of the State of the Union speech mentioning health care:  

    "We have a line on page 10 that says - You'll pick the health plan and the doctor of your choice - this sounds great and I know that it's just what people want to hear.   But can we get away with it?   To appear to promise the nation that everyone will get to pick the doctor of his or her choice.   That's exactly what this line does.   I am very worried about getting skewered for over-promising here on something we know full well we won't deliver."

    Did I mention the date on this memo?

    January 22, 1994!

    Yes, you may have thought it was very recent, but it was from President Clinton's administration, regarding his speech mentioning proposed health-care reform.

    This memo was part of the documents released on Friday by the National Archives and the Clinton Presidential Library. 






  • Charlie's Lawsuit against Uncle Sam

    Charlie's Lawsuit against Uncle Sam  (February 6, 2014)

    I'm thinking of filing a lawsuit against the United States Government to force CVS to sell cigarettes.  Why you ask?   To try and make a point.   I don't know if I make it, but here goes...

    Tobacco is a legal product.   How can the government stand by and not get involved in a private company blatantly discriminating against smokers?  

    How are smokers going to survive?   It's forcing smokers to find another source.   Where will smokers be able to find another source for this product being denied to them?  

    Are smokers expected to take personal responsiblity to decide if they still want to do business with CVS based on its "war on smokers"?   And what about smokers that work there?   Should they have to work in such a hostile environment? 

    How dare a private company take a moral stand based on the principles and beliefs of an owner!

    Have you figured out my point?   If government can force private businesses to offer certain types of birth control products as part of the Affordable Care Act, even against the moral principles of the owners...

    CVS is being hailed for doing business according to its standards.   Hobby Lobby has to sue to maintain its standards.



  • Michigan School Funding (February 4, 2014)

    Michigan School Funding  (February 4, 2014)

    Governor Snyder says school spending is up.   Democrats say it's down.   Analysts say they're both right!   Most importantly, what do you say?   Which measurable method of funding better tells the story of school money?

    This is why people love politics (sarcasm).....


    The governor has increased K-12 spending of total appropriations from $12.98 billion in fiscal year 2011 to $13.36 billion for the current fiscal year.   By this measure, funding is up.

    Democrats say most of the increase would only help teacher retirement costs and not help with actual per-pupil funding directly in the classroom.   By this measure, funding is down $240 per pupil from $7316 to $7076.


    So, is it up or is it down?

    My take?   I look at the bottom line which shows an increase overall.   Whether it's directly in the classroom or for teacher pensions, it's all part of the education budget.   Or should be.



  • "Dixie Dave" Minar Heart Attack

    (Charlie Rood)   "Dixie Dave" Minar had a heart attack last week.   

    He's alive!   He's okay!   Thank God!

    Here's the story...

    First of all, Dave will talk about his ordeal when makes his regular appearance on Mike Avery's Outdoor Magazine Show this weekend on WSGW (Saturday mornings 9-Noon on 100.5 FM and Sunday mornings 9-Noon on 790am).   Dave will be on about 11:50am.

    Most eveyone knows "Dixie Dave" Minar through his association with Mike Avery.   For years, you saw him with Mike on TV.   Now, you continue to hear him with Mike on the radio.

    Of course, he's also known for his restaurant in Birch Run, "Oscar and Joey's" (formerly The Old Dixie Inn).

    He's also known as a man of great faith who serves God with his time and talents in many ways.

    Last Wednesday, Dave made his regular call-in on Mike's show (this show is prerecorded on Wednesday mornings for weekend broadcast).   He called Mike after the recording was complete to let Mike know "by the way, I had a heart attack"!

    In fact, Dave made his call to Mike's show while sitting in the parking lot preparing to go to emergency as ordered by his doctor!   Dave had been experiencing some pains and suspected trouble, called his doctor, and was told to get to the hospital.

    Last Friday morning, he underwent triple-bypass surgery!   

    Doctors were amazed he wasn't dead.   Turns out he has a hereditary condition as several family members have died due to heart problems.

    Earlier today, we completed another recording of Mike's show.   Joining us for his usual appearance in the last segment was "Dixie Dave" Minar, after he had just returned home from the hospital!

    How is he doing?

    So well, that he will appear this Sunday at the 10th Annual Sportman's Wild Game Dinner and Charity Event hosted by his good friend, Mike Avery.

    This event is an evening of Christian fun and fellowship sponsored by St. Martin Lutheran Church in Birch Run with the proceeds going to the Helping Hands Ministry.   It takes place at the Frankenmuth Conservation Club, 8415 Curtis Road in Frankenmuth, doors opening at 3pm.

    The dinner is prepared by "Dixie Dave" Minar.   This year, Dave is getting some help as he will be resting in the dining room and not working in the kitchen!

    For tickets and information to this event:   Karen 989-770-4389 or Larry 810-686-3498

    AND, tomorrow on the Thursday morning WSGW Morning Team Show, we'll give away a pair of tickets after the 6:30am news.

    If you wish to send a message to Dave, please post here and we'll make sure he sees it!

    God Bless You, "Dixie Dave", and thank you for all the lives you have touched for so many years with your giving spirit, and thank you for all the lives you will continue to touch!

    (posted January 15, 2014)



  • The Government Shutdown

    Just a few thoughts on “The Government Shutdown”…

    (Charlie Rood - October 5, 2013)


    I don't deny there are many people who will face personal hardships because of the shutdown.   We are already hearing stories.   More on that in a moment. 

    However, my first reaction to the shutdown is "YAWN"!   That seemingly non-caring reaction is because of something I remember from past shutdowns, which is NOTHING!  

    I was pondering this the other day when I heard Rush Limbaugh put it in perspective.   Whether you agree or disagree with Rush, you at least know he is aware of what is happening, especially politically.

    Rush was wondering why, of all the government shutdowns that have occurred, he only recalls this one and the one in 1995.   I think the total number of shutdowns I’ve seen is seventeen.   Only these two mattered?  I don’t recall all the pain and suffering previously?   Well…  

    If I understand correctly, until about 1981, if a shutdown happened, nobody really noticed because government workers could still work when not being paid.   But then a rule was changed and workers couldn’t work without being paid.   So change the rule back!   I’m not suggesting workers shouldn’t be paid, but at least government could still function while lawmakers negotiated.  

    Something else changed, too, especially in the 90’s and today.   The media coverage.   These days, the buildup to a possible shutdown is reported as an “end of the USA as we know it” scenario.   Then, when the shutdown is active, the “body count” starts.

    Adding to this media mayhem are the politicians who willingly contribute to “shutdown coverage” with  continuing rhetoric.   They end up talking more to the cameras than they do each other!               

    As the blame game is played out, nothing gets done.   Each side is holding firm to its demands.   A stalemate.   Big deal.  

    Some government run institutions are shutdown, some programs are curtailed, and some employees are not paid.  

    That means some institutions stay open, some programs continue, and some employees are paid.   Those paid include the lawmakers responsible for the shutdown!

    Are the republicans not "playing fair" in this shutdown?   Are the democrats simply "protecting Obamacare"?

    Neither side is breaking any rules.   They are breaking trust with the American people.

    Now, nobody likes the stories of how families face difficulties because of the shutdown.   Real stories are worthy of real attention  and worthy of real solutions.  

    BUT, when you also have stories that don’t need to be stories, you have to wonder what is going on?

    I’m talking about the World War II Memorial and the veterans.   Who had the bright idea to close that down when it’s never closed in the first place?   Barricades and guards?   Talk about made for media coverage!  

    My idea to end this shutdown and prevent others?   Lawmakers and the President stop getting paid and don’t get backpay.   They are forced into non-stop negotiations, locked in until their work is done.   They can take out their own trash, clean their own bathrooms, and fend for themselves in whatever ways necessary.    AND, they don’t talk to the media until after reaching an agreement!



  • Why, Congress? Why? Why? Why?

    Why, Congress?   Why?   Why?   Why?

    (Charlie Rood, September 27, 2013)


    This isn't an easy point to make because it involves the widow of Senator Frank Lautenberg, but....

    A story in USA Today (link below) references how lawmakers are debating how to keep government funded, yet in the $1.1 trillion stopgap spending resolution, is a one-time payment to Senator Lautenberg's widow for $174,000, equivalent to his yearly salary!

    WHY?   Because these kinds of payments have become a "long-standing and routine practice of Congress", so routine, it's even covered in the official Senate handbook!

    WHY?   Because Congress has paid the funeral expenses of members who die in office since the 19th century.

    WHY?  Funeral expenses are one thing (and debatable), but the one year salary payment?

    To add further fuel to this fire is to note Frank Lautenberg's estimated worth in 2013 was estimated around $56.8 million!

    It sounds crass to ask, but does Lautenberg's widow need the money?   Heck, Bonnie Lautenberg didn't even know about this until she heard about it in the news.   

    Of course, this is nothing against her, it's against the political establishment in Washington who once again, have set up some "perk" that most of regular America does not get, but yet we pay for them to get!

    Some are pointing out that $174,000 in a $1.1 trillion dollar resolution is paltry.   

    It's NEVER paltry when you are talking about American taxpayer money!

    How many more of these expenditures might be part of spending resolutions, bills, and the budget overall?   Plenty, I'm sure!

    And now, a final "WHY"...

    Although most other federal spending is subject to across-the-board-cuts under the "sequestration", WHY doesn't this "payment to widows and heirs of deceased members of Congress" face cuts?

    BECAUSE, Congress specifically exempted the payments under the 2011 budget deal that avoided a government shutdown at that time!


    (USA Today story:   http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2013/09/26/frank-lautenberg-widow-payment/2877049/)


  • A Boy and His Dog

    A Boy and His Dog

    (Charlie Rood, September 5, 2013)


    We knew it would happen eventually.   Don't all parents of little boys at some point hear the words, "Can I have a dog?"

    I know I asked when I was a little boy.   I never got one.   I did get a parakeet!   It died.   And so did the second one.   That's okay, I survived.   But I always wanted a dog.  

    I remember the response to my dog request.   I heard that famous "parent saying" used throughout history, still used in the present, and will be used forever into the future.   It was some variation of, "when you move out of the house and you're on your own, you can get your own dog"! 

    I can't wait to use that saying myself!   However, I'll have to keep waiting, because I didn't say that to my son and his request for a dog.   I also didn't say yes.   Instead, my Faithful Wife Mary (FWM) and I gave Charlie another "parent saying" which was, "we'll see".  

    We needed to make sure WE were ready, let alone Charlie.   We would all be first time dog owners and wanted to research types of dogs, what responsibilities we would face, costs involved, etc.  


    Our son, Charlie, is adopted.   FWM and I decided we would try and use this "getting a dog" experience to help Charlie further understand his adoption.   We would find a dog  that needed a new home and we would adopt him just like Charlie was adopted.   He liked that idea.

    Now, where to find a dog?


    Let me state for the record, there are many fine agencies and organizations in the Great Lakes Bay Region doing magnificent jobs caring for animals and helping find new homes.   The reason why we didn't utilize a local institution was because of a place I had become aware of through a person at my church.

    "Best Friends Animal Society" works nationwide in outreach programs with shelters, other rescue groups, and members to promote pet adoption, spay-and-neuter services, and humane education programs.   This animal sanctuary is located in Southwestern Utah in  Angel Canyon, near the town of Kanab.   Housed here are dogs, cats, horses, birds, rabbits, barnyard animals, and more.   The animals come here abused, abandoned, or both.

    We contacted Best Friends and were put in touch with an adoption specialist.   We spent some time through e-mails and phone calls discussing our family and our lifestyle, trying  to determine what dog would be best for us.   Two of the more important aspects were the dog had to be 8-year-old boy friendly and be able to tolerate a cat!   Oh yes, we already have a cat named Tiger.   She belongs to FWM.   That's a different story.

    Our adoption specialist helped us narrow our choice to three different dogs.   The final determination was to review with the various trainers and handlers the personalities of the dogs and how they might fit our family, plus each dog had to pass a cat test.  

    It was decided one of the dogs would probably not work because he had a tendency to bite young children.   Another dog didn't do well on the cat test.   That left one more dog.  


    "Rose" was a four-month old shepherd-hound mix puppy.   She did well with adults and children.   She passed the cat test with flying colors.

    Rose was first named "Brownie" when born.   She was brought to Best Friends through a rescue in New Mexico where she was destined to be euthanized.   She had no vaccine history.   She was not spayed.   She was full of ticks.   She had worms.   She weighed about 10 pounds when she was two months old.

    At Best Friends, Rose was vaccinated, including rabies.   She was spayed.   She was treated for ticks.   She was dewormed.   She gained 10 pounds in two weeks.   She was even microchipped.  

    Rose needed a new home.   Our home.


    We finalized the adoption agreement with Best Friends.   This three page document outlines all the expectations families need to meet in order to be a "forever home" for an adopted animal.    Best Friends is so committed to every rescue, that if at anytime a family can no longer care for their adopted animal, Best Friends will take the animal back.

    Best Friends is located in Utah.   The Rood family is in Saginaw.   On Friday, August 9, at 8am, Rose was put on a plane.   After a layover in Chicago, the United Airlines flight with our precious puppy on board was scheduled to land at Detroit Metropolitan Airport at 9pm.  

    Charlie and I left Saginaw at 3:30pm.   FWM had to work.   She would be waiting at home to help when we returned.   By now, Rose was four months old and weighed 30 pounds.   I had been told by Best Friends her crate was large.   My son and are in a Neon.  

    My family (Dad and two sisters) live in Clinton Township and Warren, right on our route to Detroit's Metro Airport.   We planned a pit stop for food and rest, and to gain access to a more suitable vehicle for transporting a dog from the airport.  

    At 7:00pm (after checking to make sure the flight was on time), my son and I, along with my sisters who didn't want to miss this adventure, climbed into my Dad's minivan and headed for the airport.


    When you pick up a dog at Detroit Metro Airport, you don't go to the regular, well-marked passenger terminals.   Instead, you luckily find the nearly unmarked service drive, and hope from that road you will see some sort of identification of the cargo building you seek!

    Around 8:45pm, we found the building, parked, and got out.   It was weird.   There we were, four grownups and a little boy standing in the nearly abandoned parking lot of a cargo building waiting to pick up a dog, while across the street, we could hear planes landing and taking off, and see the continuous traffic going in and out of the airport main roads.   What were you doing Friday night, August 9? 

    We checked in at the desk and were told immediately the flight with our dog had been delayed about a half-hour.   Now we had time to kill.

    We were amused by a couple of other vehicles that pulled up to pick up pets.   The first pet pick up was a small dog.   The second pet pick up was a small pig!  

    Eventually, the plane landed and the crate with our dog was wheeled out to us on a cart.  

    Rose had arrived!   And when she rose from laying in her crate so we could see her look out at us, we realized she wasn't just a four-month old puppy, she was thirty pounds of four-month old puppy!   Then she started to bark.   A deep, healthy sounding bark.   I'm not sure what I expected (never being a dog owner before), but I'm sure it wasn't "so much puppy"!  


    I should point out it was at this moment, Rose ceased to exist.   My son was allowed to choose a new name (with my approval).   Charlie decided she needed a girl name because she is a girl.   Okay.   Charlie decided on a name from one of his favorite movies.   Okay.   Charlie announced her name would be "Princess Leia"!   Not okay.   I wasn't about to spend the next ten years calling for and commanding "Princess Leia".   Besides, two names for a dog is cumbersome.   I told him to drop the "Princess" part and her name  could simply be "Leia".    He then asked about naming her "Queen Amidala".   Sigh.   "Leia" it is!

    A little side note.   If she would have been a he, I was going to suggest the name "Kaline" in honor of one of the greatest Tigers ever to play.  The dog could have been "Kaline the Canine"! 


    As we got closer, we could see Leia was excited, probably anticipating a chance to get out of the crate she had been in virtually all day.   My son and I put our hands up to the crate, she stopped barking, and she started to lick us the through cage opening.   It was love at first sight!

    The first order of business was to allow her a chance to do her business!   Thankfully, she was sent with a leash.   Actually, she was supposed to be sent with a leash, but it wasn't contained in the packet of information we received.   My sisters suggested we use my belt for a leash.  

    By 10pm, we had the Leia loaded and we were on our way back.   We did stop at a local Meijer to pick up a leash.  

    At my Dad's house, we unloaded Leia and all related dog materials, transferring everything to the Neon.   My suspicions were confirmed of needing a more suitable vehicle for dog transport as the large crate did not fit.   That's okay, I had a plan.   We broke down the crate, put it in the trunk, and had Leia on a blanket in the back seat.   This thrilled Charlie because he would be next to her the entire drive back to Saginaw.

    At 11:15pm, I'm behind the wheel, my son is buckled into his seat, and Leia is calmly laying next to him.   I called FWM and told her to get ready for a lot of puppy!


    We started the drive back to Saginaw.   It didn't take long for Charlie to fall asleep.   It didn't take long for Leia to fall asleep.   That's the way it was for the entire ride home.  

    At 1:00am, we arrived back in Saginaw.   After waking both Charlie and Leia, FWM and I got everyone and everything into the house.  

    As we all drifted off to sleep, I thought about myself as a youngster and my desire for a dog.  

    Finally, a Boy and His dog were home.

    But who really is the boy in this story?



Tom Sullivan


Evening Roundup with Todd Armbruster 6:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.