Tim drew political cartoons for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette for nearly 30 years. His work appeared in national newspapers, newsmagazines and on network television. He also paints and has drawn comic strips, written and illustrated a column and feature stories, and written one-act plays. And, he plays in a blues-zydeco band: piano and, uh... accordion.

You’re Having a Really Bad Day

Investigating a Suicide. Me?

As the sergeant drank cheap whiskey one night at the NCO Club on Incirlik Air Base in southern Turkey, his wife overdosed on pills. Because suicide is a homicide, the Office of Special Investigations on base, meaning my two colleagues and me, got the case. The base security police had roped off their trailer, and …

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The Newspapers & Rico the Baker

Pittsburgh’s old morning newspaper was the small dog in town—feistier, funkier, more colorful, more daring and, compared to the larger afternoon paper, far more fun. Its “personnel department” was Agnes who worked in an alcove full of office machines from the Roosevelt years. The Teddy Roosevelt years. Ray took over. He was bright, funny, had …

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Train Shows & Guys

When they hit male menopause, some men buy a sports car, or a sailboat, or take off with a young woman named Amber. Others take the cheaper and more benign route: buy electric trains and go to train shows. A local volunteer fire department held one Sunday and it was jammed, mainly by men who …

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Confession: Cops and Kids

I done got busted for breaking-and-entering (cue the blues harp and slide guitar). This is a sad tale but I must spare all young people the same sordid fate. One sunny Saturday morning six decades ago in Seattle’s Ballard district, two kids blew open the door of a playground field house, and the rest of …

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Painting? Have Some Fun!

I spent three decades at a job that wasn’t a job, one at which few have actually earned a living. But cartoons disappear when the newspapers are bundled up for recycling. Heck, newspapers disappear. After leaving the newspaper, I began painting… and soon remembered it is darn hard. I venture to say this in spite …

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Of Irish Roads and Distant Kin

So I’m hauling eight of us—my wife Kay, her brother and his wife, her sister and her husband, and their two Irish cousins Ann and Peggy—down this dinky road in the farmland outside Galway, Ireland, in a blue beast the rental agency calls a “mini-bus.” Peggy is riding shotgun (“Careful of this turn now!”) and …

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Eurotrip revisited

Seven months after JFK was assassinated and four months after the Beatles played Ed Sullivan, 100,000 American students (I was one) became the first generation of middle-class American college kids who could afford to travel to Europe. That summer of ’64, thousands of us crossed the pond thanks to larger jets, cheap tickets and Arthur …

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Rainy Nights in Paris

Just after midnight in Paris: The Left Bank boulevard glitters from a downpour. Street lamps, a white “HOTEL” sign at the end of the street by the Seine, a distant sing-song police siren. It’s mostly deserted. Two young women scoot by, then four guys. A few people slump on a bus. “A demain,” says a …

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