January 3, 2015

1/3/2014. Early on in my walks, I thought I should try and get all the media coverage I could. I walked into MANY newspapers and was mostly turned down. But I did get a little over a hundred of them. Mostly small ones and a few bigger ones. I no longer seek them out, I haven’t for years. Usually, these days, someone sees me on the road and calls their local paper. I was in Northern Ohio in 2004 on a walk around America. I was in a good sized town and so I approached the local paper for a possible interview to help spread my “LOVE LIFE” message. In spite of the fact, more than one local resident I encountered, told me their newspaper really sucked. I called the paper on a Monday and they set up a time for an interview the next day. So, I had to spend the night in a motel I really couldn’t afford. I showed up next morning at the exact time I was told. I was then told they had decided it was not a story they wanted to run. I took a deep breath and then said something I would never say today, I said, “I doubt you will run any story today as important as my message.” Always listen to the locals, the newspaper sucked.

No more than ten minutes after leaving the newspaper, walking up a hill, to my left, just above my head, and but a few feet from me, an older Jeep Cherokee slammed into a parking space! Scared the crap outa’ me! Out jumped a very pretty dark haired young lady and ran toward me. She said, “Thank God I found you! I work at the newspaper and just happened to look out the window and saw you leaving with your sign. I ran downstairs and asked what you had wanted. They told me you were about suicide. I asked them to please let me clock out for a few minutes as I just had to talk to you!” After telling me she was 18 years-old, she told me this. “Me and my boyfriend since grade school graduated on Saturday. He told me, being as he was leaving for college, he wanted to break up with me!” She said her heart was crushed and she had never felt such pain! She continued, “I jumped in my car and just started driving really fast and all I could think was that I had to drive into a tree or a wall or something! And then, I saw your “LOVE LIFE” sign. It was a big slap in the face!” Now she is sobbing, and she said, “I just had to let you know. I just had to! Thank you! And I am so sorry my paper wouldn’t do your story.” And I said, “Sweetheart, I do not need them. YOU are the story!” And while trying to catch her breath and stop crying, the little darling said, “They suck anyway.” And I’ve never personally sought out media coverage since. Hers, is the only kind of story I’m interested in now. I want to mend the broken heart while it is yet still beating.