You might wonder why I love to write. This could be the reason. Gramps. A newspaper columnist for twenty-seven years. Lines and Angles. Local folks said they couldn’t get through their morning coffee with Cliff’s words.
In my early years of college, I had a speech class which was basically about public speaking, something I’ve never feared or had a problem with. We had an assignment to read something that would invoke an emotion in the audience. I read a piece titled “Robbie Couldn’t Wait,” about my grandparent’s dog who used to ride in the car, behind the driver, and if grandpa took a wrong turn the dog would go nuts. The piece was about Robbie dying which was illustrated by the expression “he couldn’t wait.” When I was finished reading the entire class, including the instructor was crying. Boys and girls.
Apparently, there is a room named after him at Indiana University School of Journalism. We used to fish together. He lived in South Florida and we would head out for grouper, snook, tarpon, anything. He wore those South Florida elderly pants covered in floral patterns, always pulled up to just under his armpits. Classic. He called me “Daniel Reed,” and would grab my knee and squeeze until I started squealing with laughter. I never got a chance to speak with him about writing but his impact is probably why this site exists.