Saturday, January 15, 2011

Screwing Hackensack again

This is a photo I took myself of the Church On...Image via Wikipedia
The historic Church on The Green in Hackensack.

The Page 1 lead today in The Record of Woodland Park reports $21,000 in thefts from Prospect Avenue high-rise residents evacuated after a garage collapse July 16 -- a rare instance of Hackensack being on the front page of the former Hackensack daily.

But you have to wonder why it took Editor Francis Scandale and head Assignment Editor Deirdre Sykes this long to get the story in the paper, seeing how residents filed the first theft reports with police more than five months ago.

This account is as stale as their excuses for why their news coverage has virtually ignored anything about Hackensack outside of the scandal-ridden Police Department and the arrest and suspension of Chief Ken Zisa.

Struggling downtown

You'd never know the paper was founded in Hackensack in 1895 and that it prospered for more than 110 years before the greedy Borg family pulled out and screwed Main Street merchants and other businesses, in the hope of making a killing on selling the landmark River Street building and surrounding acres.

Today's story wasn't even written by Monsy Alvarado, the Hackensack reporter who is one of Sykes' pets and whose work load is carefully monitored and adjusted. In the past two to three years, Alvarado has gone more than 30 days on at least two occasions without filing a Hackensack story.

She's ignored everything from the city budget, tax rate and new mayor to its financial sleight-of-hand with bonding and budget transfers to its struggling downtown to its unusual firehouses.

Even the L-3 story she did today -- on a Maywood study of taking its students out of Hackensack schools after many decades -- appeared in a weekly newspaper long ago.
Now ad makes sense

What a perfect coincidence: The six-column ad for a dealer of German luxury automobiles that runs above the fold on the front of Local today is attached to a 2011 PEOPLE TO WATCH feature on a German-born chef.

Restaurant Reviewer Elisa Ung doesn't seem to be all that familiar with North Jersey dining when she quotes the chef as saying "everyday dining is dominated by franchises." On the contrary, everyday dining is dominated by privately owned restaurants -- from Italian to to Korean to Peruvian.

Production screw-up

Ung and Food Editor Susan Leigh Sherrill continue to disappoint, but readers can do far better with Sachi Fujimori, who gets belated recognition for her Better Living article on tea parlors this week, and Kara Yorio, who gives us a tour of mall food courts today.

Unfortunately, Yorio's article ends in mid-sentence on F-2, the continuation page.
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  1. Fujimori is excellent. A true talent.

  2. I totally agree. I actually enjoy reading her stuff -- something I can't say for many others at The Record, even those with far more experience.

    And I believe she came from the Herald News, a source of some of the hardest working and most talented reporters who are now at the flagship paper.


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