This is the time of year I inevitably think of George Hesselberg predicting the high school basketball tournament winners based in part on the names of the school's cheerleaders.
Just like I yearn, every Halloween, for Hesselberg's accounting of the annual, post-midnight running of the dunderheads on State Street. In fact there's a lot I miss now that one of the best reporters this city's ever read has retired.
This is not a column bemoaning the shrinking of American journalism, especially daily newspapers.
There's plenty of that and more to come.
Rather this is simply a note of gratitude to George Hesselberg for 42 years of stories about this city and its people in the Wisconsin State Journal, and his one of a kind humor, warmth, skill and honesty as a reporter and a colleague. Reading him was a delight. Running into him covering a story was even better. The news in Madison isn't the same without him.