Philly Blunt

Freelance writer. Editor and web-video producer. Former Atlantic City Press and Philadelphia Weekly staff writer, City Paper managing editor/columnist and Dougherty for Senate campaign manager. Comments welcome here or emailed to brianhickey9 [at] hotmail. Now on: Facebook (Brian Hickey, in Philly) Twitter at Flickr at Be sure to check out Hickey on Divorce Court:

31 January 2009

Hi, 1953, I'm Brian.

Back in my freshman year as a Blue Hen, something about Newark, Del. struck me as being odd. No, it wasn't that you can't flip over unattended cars in parking lots. Campus police made that very clear. But it was the Ku Klux Klan parade on Main Street. Oh yeah, the sheet-sportin' dudes would come over from Elkton, Maryland, exercise their First Amendment rights and head home. (As an aside, I remember it being like some parade that I can't remember the name to in South Carolina where "White Christmas" was the theme song.)
Now, the Newark Klan march ended by the time I was a sophomore (I think), but it seems as if their spirit is alive and well in Philly. In 2009, the Year of the Multi-Racial President and (supposedly) the Easing of Racial Barriers.

Northeast Philly Pride Day

Your honors, I'd like to submit a snippet from the Saturday Inquirer into evidence. To wit:

Two black employees at the city's trash transfer center in Roxborough have sued the city for discrimination, claiming their supervisor assigned blacks a separate bathroom and reserved a water cooler for white workers only.

Um, wake up white people and smell what bigots are cooking with your tax dollars.

30 January 2009

The First Post-Brain-Surgery Football Pick (on here, at least)

I loathe the Stealers. The Cardinals, too. But I'm forced to make a pick, so here goes something:

Arizona 20, Stealers 17.

Fun fact: Little Ben will throw three picks, one of which will seal the game ... not to mention his infamy!

By the way, while I'm back blogging here, feel free to join me on Facebook, if even just for my nonsensical status updates.

Gandhi removed from office

The worst part about being in a two-week coma? Well, it ain't the dreams, that's fo sure. I found myself, at different times, in an underground fun-science factory in the Lower Northeast part of Philly and at a roadside Texas bar with the full cast of Friday Night Lights. So, no, that is not it at all.
Here's what it is: The fact that I missed out on all the Blagojevich fun!
(And Fumo's physical and mental unraveling, too. But that's for another time, when he proves multiple people's theory that he's just a-searchin' for a medical deferrment from the pokey. For obvious reasons. This trial wrecked 'em? Rectum? Damn near killed 'em.)
So, I'm at a loss to comprehend just why the silly lil Illinois legislature voted 59-0 to have him removed from office all because he (allegedly) tried to sell a U.S. Senate seat. But I'm keen-minded enough to know that when this dude ...

Photo from the New York Times

... says (on the Today show) ...

I thought about Mandela, Dr. King, Gandhi, and trying to put some perspective in all of this.

... that I'd have been forced to stop championing the return of Pat "Hookers, Blow and Get Crazy With" O'Brien and carry the torch for Blago! But, alas, the scumbag hit-and-run driver who didn't have the balls to fess up to mowing me down and leaving me for dead had other plans.
And that's what left me mourning today when I read, on the front page of the Inquirer, that Middletown Officer Chris Jones, 37, was killed while conducting a traffic stop on a notoriously bad Route 1 in Bucks County. He died of head injuries. And it's a tragedy.
"This is the saddest day of my 51-year career," said Middletown Police Chief Frank McKenna, who had been scheduled to retire today. "I can't speak for the department, but for me it is like losing a son."

28 January 2009

Don't Call it a Comeback

After all, this is only my blog and, well, there are about 815 previous posts on here, proving that, no, it's not all that difficult to keep up with.
But, it was a tad difficult to keep up with after a dirtbag hit-and-run driver left me for dead in the middle of the street, where I was walking to grab the PATCO High-Speedline back to Philly (ok, Krupa's) the night after Thanksgiving.
Now, I really don't remember 1) getting hit, or 2) being taken to Cooper Hospital where two pieces of my skull were extracted to let the swelling go down (I think) and I was placed into a coma to recover. But, and just skip ahead if you've heard this all before since news of the dirtbag hit-and-run driver made just about every newspaper and TV station in the Illadel, I do remember just about everything since the coma.
The pain of being in a near-death situation.
The recovery after clinging to life like there could be no tomorrow.
And the looking forward to getting back to full force so I can help the police track down the coward who did this to me and my family yet didn't have the gumption to man up to what he'd done.

Rego took this picture after the media home-run contest at Citizens Bank Park the year before the Phils were champs. Suffice it to say, I didn't hit any homeruns.

Through my recovery, I didn't let anger get in the way, figuring it'd only serve to undermine myself. But in the time since I've been home, I'm left to wonder what kind of savage can live with himself, knowing he almost made my wife a widow and my father have to bury a son almost three years to the day after we buried my mom.
Make no mistake about it if you're reading this, dirtbag: A lot of people are looking for you. You might just want to make things easier on yourself by turning yourself in. After all, they can't get you on DUI charges anymore. And besides, PATCO is so friggin' inept that they don't even have cameras that would show you staggering from their silver-bullet train to your car in the parking lot. (I think I speak for a lot of people when I say, "PATCO, you should also be ashamed of yourselves. And if I find out you could have made this mystery easier for the cops to clear, well, I hope you have a good lawyer."

Enough ranting for now. I can feel my brain trying to creep through those skull holes anytime I get too angry. (Ok, maybe not)
But the point of me getting back into the swing of blogging was 1) to start sharpening my smarts and 2) to acknowledge the passing of one of my favorite story subjects, 93-year-old Lillian P. Willoughby.
You see, Lillian was an ex-con. I covered her and fellow Grannies Against the War getting arrested after a 2006 sit-in at the Broad Street military recruiting station.

And Lillian, a Quaker, got right on into an unmarked police car and hauled off to a West Philly precinct house for booking. All the grannies were badasses that day, but none more than Lillian, who died Jan. 15, the day before I was released from the hospital. The world's a much better place for her having been on it for more than nine decades!

21 January 2009

Getting better by the day

Hola. Just wanted to steer your attention toward a piece that Action News' Matt O'Donnell did on my recovery today. I'm getting close to being able to start bringing you all up to date on my improving condition, but this segment does that for me so I'm recliner-bound!

16 January 2009

I'm Home!

But not ready to blog quite yet. Will be soon, though.
Go Birds.

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