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I’ve been asked to include some brief personal information that will run at the bottom of my column each week. It’s a little tough trying to sum up a lifetime in a few words, but here are some possibilities I’m considering.

Crusading reporter by day, cunning private detective by night, and brain-dead most mornings.

Proving four times a month that plagiarism can pay off.

Losing sight, hearing and fine motor movements, but still has some hair left.

Has a wife, four kids and a dog – likes everyone but the dog.

Has lived in Forest Park for 26 years and gets anxious if he’s out of town for more than four hours.

Highlights of his year include the All School Picnic, Summerfest, Art Fair, No Gloves Tournament, Groovn in the Grove, Christmas Walk, St. Patrick’s Day and the All School Picnic.

Would write about schools more often but doesn’t want to jeopardize wife’s job.

Once had an original idea for a column and could use another one.

Has been a reporter since 1989 and a columnist since 1998 but most proud of promotion to stringer.

His dilapidated property earned him a Shame Award, but at least he cuts the grass.

When it comes to Forest Park, he knows where all the bodies are buried and will conduct a tour for a small fee.

Feels column is boxed in by advertisements and wishes his photo could be updated to show age spots.

Feels out of touch with elementary schools and youth sports but is not having a fifth child just to reconnect.

Believes his house could serve as a showcase where local craftsman could demonstrate their skills and willingness to donate services.

Hasn’t felt like a transplanted Oak Parker for a long time.

Would never trade journalistic integrity for a free beer or a free meal but has weak spot for free imported beer.

Treasures memories of his kids growing up in Forest Park, especially back when he could hang out with stay-at-home moms.

Thinks that Forest Park is by far the best community in the Chicago area, way ahead of Berwyn.

Would give a pint of blood for a column topic – again.

Has not had an unexpressed thought in 28 years – just ask his wife.

Enjoys chatting with neighbors and listening for well-turned phrases that would look good under his byline.

Speaking of bylines, column topics are becoming an endangered species. If you have one: jrice1038@aol.com or find me in the phone book.

John Rice is a columnist/private detective, who has seen his business and family thrive in Forest Park. He thoroughly enjoys life in the village and still gets a thrill smelling Red Hots, watching softball and strolling through cemeteries.