Tonawanda News

Columns

March 16, 2013

There is no joy in Buffalo -- tonight

Tonawanda News —

The world lost a man last week whose life and impact it would be impossible to sum up, even with every free inch in this newspaper.

I guess the simplest way to put it is: I lost a friend. 

But Tom Joyce was much more than just a friend. He was a mentor, a partner in crime, a king of barroom banter, reader, lover and critic of books famous and not. He was not a journalist in the literal sense of the word but if our job is to write history's first draft he was one of the finest scribes I'll ever know.

I came to know Tom as a freshman at Canisius College in 2000. He and his best friend, the late Mel Schroeder, were English professors and moderators of the college paper, The Griffin.

I came to The Griffin sort of through the back door. I thought I wanted to get into public relations and a work-study job in the school's PR office brought me in contact with some of the editors. 

The first time a story broke that made the school look a little silly my bosses in the PR department instructed me not to tell any of my Griffin contacts about it. Ten minutes later I snuck out for a cigarette and called in the tip. From that moment on I knew I wanted to report the news, not hide it.

At the ripe age of 18 that was about all I knew. 

Together, Mel and Tom offered clarity in those blurry, heady days of post-adolescent discovery and expansion.

Were it not for Tom and Mel I would have failed at journalism and I'd probably be churning out the second-rate pressers that ceaselessly flood my inbox exclaiming, "New Dunkin' Donuts opens in Hoboken, N.J.!" 

Text Only
Columns
  • CONFER:

    April 23, 2014

  • DuVall, Eric mug.jpg DUVALL: In defense of the Common Core

    They've become the two dirtiest words in education, but the Common Core is very much worth defending.

    April 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • tucker, barb.jpg TUCKER: Bits and pieces from out and about Ever since it was restored and opened, the Hotel @ Lafayette in downtown Buffalo has fascinated me. Last Monday, the Preservation Buffalo Niagara offered a tour of the hotel led by developer Rocco Termini.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug - adamczyk.jpg ADAMCZYK: Kenmore is a village made of bricks Buffalo and surrounding environs have brick buildings galore, often in the process of repurpose. Whole neighborhoods made of brick await development, redevelopment, gentrification, whatever wand will be waved at them to make them function again. Structures here tend not to be razed; they fall down occasionally but typically simply stand and wait.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • leffler, scott.jpg LEFFLER: Justice is blind -- and deaf and dumb I've always been intrigued by the concept of justice. I say concept because it really seems more theoretical to me than practical. One man's justice is another man's nightmare.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: Don't go soft on teenage criminals

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • DuVall, Eric mug.jpg For Sabres, more suffering is on tap

    April 15, 2014 1 Photo

  • tucker, barb.jpg TUCKER: Taking down trees 'disheartening' Several readers have questioned the City of Tonawanda's tree removal program. An email to Jenna Koch, who represents the third ward and checks into any query on the city, explained the program.


    April 12, 2014 1 Photo

  • mug - adamczyk.jpg [Duplicate] ADAMCZYK: Letterman was on my side The announcement that Mr. Letterman is retiring from his groundbreaking television program, sometime in 2015, is already old news, but it gives opportunity to ponder a few truisms about history and modern life.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Leffler Mug 041114 [Duplicate] LEFFLER: 'Need to know' a double-edged sword Inquisitive doesn't begin to describe me. I must know everything. About everything. I hate being in the dark. I guess that's what makes my career choice so very obvious. I think "must know everything" is at the top of most journalists' trait lists.

    April 11, 2014 1 Photo