Tag Archive: Interview

Made in Argentina

Time Out
Buenos Aires for Visitors
Summer/Autumn 2009
Page 55

puratierra

Made in Argentina
We salute the emergence of a new wave of chefs unafraid of mixing tradition with innovation.

With a focus on new uses for local and regional ingredients, Martín Molteni, chef at Pura Tierra, is experimenting with feverish intensity to find the best ways to use those products that Argentinians have forgotten are part of their heritage – quinoa, amaranth, herbs, wild game and fish. In his view, ‘Argentina is a nation in search of a culinary identity… it is the responsibility of chefs to not just help someone get their certification but to develop their future, their palates and their curiosity.’

Chef Molteni takes classic regional dishes – primarily fish and game dishes, and others which utilzie these lost ingredients – carefully deconstructs them, and puts them back together as spectacularly presented plates that would not be out of place in a top dining establishment in any food capital of the world.

One of the things he focuses on is the lack of inspiration and drive among young chefs to get themselves out there and learn, experience and grow. His approach with both staff and customers is to guide them through tasting the purity of individual ingredients, each prepared in a variety of ways that show off, say, a tomato, at its best. a recent visit showcased them at their best: cured bondiola, one of Argentina’s favorite cold-cuts, alongside amazingly small cubes of fresh tomato; an intense tomato compote served beneath a locally made artesanal burrata cheese; and moments later a cut of ocean-fresh corvina atop roasted tomatoes. He is working to generate in others the same curiosity that he discovered in himself as he spent 16 years working in other chefs’ kitchens in Argentina, Australia and France.

For his part, chef Javier Urondo, of Urondo Bar in Parque Chacabuco, takes as his creative starting point what the average visitor or local might consider the ‘cuisine of Buenos Aires’ – tablas, milanesas, steak, french fries, and so on. His plates are easily recognizable as Argentinian. As he puts it, ‘I like to serve everyday dishes with something simple and different that makes them surprising.’ A perfect example would be a beautifully seared steak served with a spicy garlic puree and accompanied by a risotto flavored with his home-made horseradish mustard; or his signature copetín, a classic collection of vegetables and meat hors d’oeuvres that any Argentinian would recognize – until they bite in and experience the influence of exotic herbs and spices, a different technique applied to each one. He sees hope for the future of local cuisine, with new sources of fresh fruits and vegetables, meat, fish and dairy emerging – all things that Argentina excels at producing, but historically has exported rather than offered to its own citizens. However, as more locals travel, and more foreigners arrive, the interest and demand for ‘something more’ has arisen.

Some of this demand is being satisfied by ‘ethnic’ restaurants serving cuisine from Asia or other Latin American countries. Some is being addressed by the culinary vanguard, with modern techniques and presentations and a strong European or North American base. More recently, there’s been a quietly growing movement of ‘modern Argentinian’ cooking, with chefs like the two profiled above and others like Diego Félix at Casa Félix and Martín Baquero at Almanza, taking the lead. Local dining is already looking more interesting.


In mid-2006, I started writing for Time Out Buenos Aires. With changes in their way of conducting business, I decided to part company with them after my last article and set of reviews in mid-2009.

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Jamie Taylor

Passport Magazine
Issue 42 – October 2006

businessprofile – Jamie Taylor
Serendipity and hard work help when starting a business in a foreign country

Jamie TalorPacking up and moving to another city to start a new job is daunting enough for most folk. Some people go a little further. Jamie Taylor packed up and moved to a different hemisphere, 7,000 miles away. He left behind family, friends, and steady work for the gleam of an idea he’d put together with his new long distance boyfriend, someone whom he’d met on vacation a year earlier, and only kept in contact with via internet and phone since. He left behind a happy existence in a stable part of the world for complete unknowns in a country that was known for military coups, economic and political instability, and repeated military conflicts with his home country.

Some folks might think it was a mid-life crisis, but Jamie doesn’t see it that way. He may have been fulfilled in his longtime job in London as an HIV counselor, but he knew it wasn’t satisfying his long term goals and dreams of having his own business, less stress, and living with a man that he loved. When he met Ilia, a young Russian man who had been living in Buenos Aires for ten years, new things started to seem possible. Within a year he’d wrapped up all the loose ends he could think of, and was on a plane, winging his way to Argentina’s capital, trusting in a combination of fate and determination.

Looking back at things now, a couple of years later, he might have approached everything a bit differently. “I might have come down and spent some more time vacationing and getting to know the city, its ins and outs, and making a circle of friends. I might have talked to people I knew back in London about what it would be like to open my own business. I might even have spent some time checking out the bar scene in Buenos Aires before opening my own. Maybe, most importantly, I might have asked someone just how come no one had opened a bar like the one I imagined.”

Instead, somehow forefront in his mind was the idea that “Anyone can open and run a bar, it’s easy and not very stressful, and after all it’s just mixing drinks.” With those thoughts in mind, he pushed right into the fray. Noting that all the gay bars and clubs in the city seemed to be located out in the touristy or residential areas, he looked for space in the heart of the downtown financial district. Looking back, he remembers, “I thought I’d be able to attract the local and expatriate after-work crowd. None of the other bars and clubs were even open until at least ten at night, and lots of them not until midnight. I figured that gays and lesbians who wanted a drink and a place to hang out would love an early evening venue.”

He soon found a large space with plenty of room for a bar, a lounge area, and even a small dance floor. It was on a busy commercial street. It was also situated down a narrow concrete staircase, in the basement beneath a copy shop. It was close to all the things he’d thought about: the business district, many major tourist hotels and attractions, and it was easy to get to via subway or bus line. The building management didn’t seem to care what he wanted to do with the space, so he rented it, and jumped right into the renovation. On August 4th, 2005, he flung the doors open to the public, and Flux (Marcelo T. de Alvear, 980, www.fluxbar.com.ar) made its debut.

In most cities, opening a bar would prove to be a massive task – between licenses and insurance, various permits from building departments, health departments, and a legion of other bureaucratic entities. Buenos Aires, however, has limited legislation and regulation when it comes to opening a small business, and Taylor recalls, “The only inspectors I ran into were from the building department, who wanted to make sure I had my own public entrance, private garbage collection, and bathrooms. For the most part they stood there, pretty much with their hands out.” With Argentina’s depressed economy at the time, he was able to get up and running for what most business owners, especially bar owners, would think a pittance, 125,000 pesos, or just over $40,000, plus savings to live on until the bar reaches steady profitability, something it’s only just now beginning to achieve.

Gay bars have a notoriously hard time opening in many parts of the world, what with local politics, religious leaders, and often underworld shakedowns. Argentina, a strong Catholic country with a history of governmental, police, and criminal corruption, might have had those same problems, but to his surprise, Taylor found that the “gay” part of the bar was the least of his issues. Argentina’s constitution, written in 1853, has long (at least by letter of the law) guaranteed equality under the law for gays and lesbians. Civil unions have been legal for years [in Buenos Aires]. Gay marriage is a current proposal in the [city] legislature, expected to pass with relatively little opposition some time in 2007.

Flux BarFrom the beginning, it’s been a roller-coaster operation. Being new, it immediately attracted attention. Being open at a time of day when no other gay bar was, turned out to be a blessing and a curse. Taylor now says, “There were people who wanted a place to hang out with friends and drink after work, but there weren’t many of them. You know, Buenos Aires’ social culture is such that people often zip home from work and take a nap, like a late siesta, so that they can get up later and go to dinner at ten or eleven., followed by a few hours of clubbing, then a few hours of sleep, and back to work in the morning.” Jamie soon found himself catering more to a small crowd of tourists than locals. That made it hard to develop a regular clientele – the backbone of any bar business.

“I’ll try anything and everything,” he says. “I have art shows with the work of some local artists, both Argentines and ex-pats. We tried Tuesday evening gay tango lessons, Thursday language practice groups, opened up the lounge for meetings of the gay expat community, and now we’re trying late evening DJs on the weekends.” The scheduling is often erratic, as those hosting events change their plans at the last minute – a common occurrence in Buenos Aires.

As part of his plan to attract more customers, he offers a 2 for 1 early happy hour, something that isn’t common in this city. He’s also had to create some interesting specialty drinks, but first, as he points out, “Ilia and I had to learn how to bartend, period. Neither of us had any real previous experience running a bar, and mixing a G&T or pouring a beer for friends back in London wasn’t really enough. He found himself studying bar manuals and cocktail books, and he keeps a couple behind the bar to refer to when he gets stumped by a request. When he found that local liquor distributors only represented a few national and imported brands, he had to spend time searching out sources of different liquors and mixers, often purchased retail at small specialty shops or markets.

What is Jamie’s advice for other gay and lesbian entrepreneurs heading to Buenos Aires? “Have much more money than you think you’ll need! I figured out what my estimated costs would be and then added fifty percent. I wish I’d made it double, or even more. I’m still living on savings and putting everything we earn back into the bar.” He recommends making friends in the community you plan to serve, and finding out what it is that interests them. Get their input on your ideas, listen to their concerns, find out about their lifestyles, and figure out a way to implement your ideas in concert rather than at odds with those things. Otherwise, you might find yourself scrambling to make corrections that could have been easily addressed up-front. Also, find out everything you can about the business you plan to open, especially if it’s a change of career.

While his lack of training and experience in the bar world gave him fresh eyes and few preconceived notions about how to run a bar, it also left him with no practical idea how to go about it. “It was sheer luck that the economy here was ready for any kind of business investment, and that there are really no regulations, or you can easily ignore a lot of them; not that I’d recommend that. A lot of days I wish I’d found out these things before moving across the world.”

Would that have stopped him? “No, I needed a major change in my life. I wanted to be with Ilia, and I wanted an adventure.”

There’s no doubt he’s accomplished all that, in spades.


Passport magazine is a relatively new, ultra-slick, ultra-hip gay travel magazine. My friends Don Tuthill and Robert Adams, respectively the publisher and editor-in-chief, who have owned and run QSF magazine for many years, launched this publication recently. It has received industry accolades. They asked me to come along and write the occasional article for this venture as well.

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Why Can’t You Have Both?

Outlet Radio Network
October 22, 2004

Why Can’t You Have Both?

About 13 years ago I had the opportunity to spend an afternoon with Craig Claiborne. For those who don’t know who he was, he was probably the most influential restaurant critic who has ever written in the United States. Why? Basically, he was the first true restaurant & food critic for a major newspaper. Not that others hadn’t written about such things, but he raised it to an art form, and, he worked for the New York Times. He was also openly gay. Craig died in 2000. There’s no particular reason for this column, which was written 13 years ago, to pop up now, except it was never published, and I ran across it while I was looking through some of my files. Re-reading it brought back the memory of a wonderful afternoon earlier in my career, and I thought I’d share it here. Parts of this interview, both what’s reproduced below and more, were used by Tom McNamee in his book The Man Who Changed the Way We Eat: Craig Claiborne and the American Food Renaissance, which I’ve reviewed over on my SaltShaker blog.


I’ve been picked up in a lot of places by a lot of different people, in a lot of different ways. I never expected to be picked up at a bus stop, by Craig Claiborne, in a jeep. Then again, I never expected to be picked up by Craig Claiborne. Meeting the man who made it his career to open the doors of fine food to the American public is not the sort of thing a young chef and writer gets to do every day.

Comfortably ensconced in his East Hampton, New York home, a Michael Feinstein album playing in the background, Craig Claiborne talked explicitly about his life and loves. As he is fond of pointing out, his father taught him to always tell the truth. The interview is punctuated by a brief call from his lover of eleven years, calling to make sure I’d been safely collected at the station; by preparations for lunch (we made a pot of his famed corn and crab chowder), all concentration on the task at hand; romantic recollections of intimate encounters; and moments of misty-eyed sentiment as he reminisced about the men and women he has shared his life with.

Two stints in the Navy, bartending, and public relations for ABC, led Craig Claiborne to almost three decades at the New York Times. As the food news editor, he stirred the tastes of a public that hungered for food that hadn’t been scientifically prepared by home economists. Thousands of columns and articles, and a dozen or more books, fed kitchen hints, dining tips, and food facts to millions.

Scene. A youngster sits at the Chicago World’s Fair sampling his first food outside of the south. A bowl of jellied consomme with lemon juice and tabasco.

It was the best thing I ever ate in my life.

Shift scenes. Casablanca, World War II. A young man in uniform is invited by a handsome lieutenant to have a local home-cooked meal. Couscous, coriander, cumin.

One of the most important foods I ever ate was that couscous.

Shift again. The Ile de France, an ocean voyage. A young man, now out of uniform, tenderly bites into a Turbot a l’Infante.

I took one bite and my god, I was transmogrified. I decided, I’ve got to learn how to cook French.

From there life moved swiftly. Hotel school in Lausanne, Switzerland. A couple articles for Gourmet on tea and vodka. Pushing Fluffo, a butter substitute, led to contacts at the top restaurants in town, and more importantly, with Jane Nickerson, then the food editor for The New York Times. When Jane announced her retirement, Craig’s employers took her to lunch to celebrate.

Over a nice bottle of wine, Jane described her difficulty getting away from the newspaper. She said, “everybody in town has tried. If they can scramble an egg and type with two fingers they’ve applied for this job and The New York Times has refused to take anybody.” So after a couple glasses of wine I thought, why not little old me? So I went back to the office and, if you’ll pardon the expression, I closeted myself, and wrote a note to Jane Nickerson, saying, you know all about my background, do you think The New York Times would consider hiring a man as a food writer?

Two interviews, numerous phone calls, a tense vacation on Fire Island, and the job was his.

I went back out to the beach and then I started crying, uncontrollably, saying, I said, by god, what will you ever write a column about? I saw this guy hauling in a bluefish and I said, by god, I’ll write an article about bluefish.

In thirty-three years of writing four and five columns a week, did he ever write that article?

I never wrote a column on bluefish. I don’t like bluefish.

Every writer has those moments that he or she wishes they’d had a chance to write about, opportunities that happen once in a lifetime. Any regrets?

Well, now that I’m gone [from The Times] I can think of things I’d like to do, but let me think… There were two interviews that didn’t work out… But off-hand I can’t really think of one.

He reflects a bit more and then suddenly remembers a writer’s worst nightmare. A trip through the provinces of China, hosted by the U.S. ambassador to Burma and his wife, Burt and Lily Lee Levin, and one of the top restauranteurs in China and Hong Kong, Jimmy Wu. He returned with stacks of 3 by 5 cards.

I spent three solid days writing about this trip to China, and the third morning… I pressed the wrong button. I erased the entire thing. About twenty seven pages. Gone… I couldn’t go back and rewrite, because the notes were all shuffled, I didn’t have them numbered. Gone, with the wind.

In all those weeks in China, what stood out as memorable? Two things. An awful mountain train trip from Chengdu to Chongqing in the Szechuan province, for some of the best food he had on the trip…

It was street food. Which we ate in the rain. They had marvelous, fantastic soups, and noodles, and Szechuan pickles.

and back in Chengdu…

They brought us the next little thing, about that long and that big. I pick it up with my chopsticks and I said, “what is this?” She says, “the penis [bull’s].” Well, I ate the goddamn thing, but it was so unappealing. Not because it was a penis, I’ve had enough of those in my mouth, but it was just so awful to eat.

Well, as long as the subject came up…

I’m not bragging, but I have never met someone, even a straight guy, who I haven’t been to bed with, who I couldn’t take. I mean, I don’t care how many children they have, you get anybody in the right situation, gain his confidence, and after a couple of drinks, if you’re kind, he will. That’s all.

Being gay prior to the ’80s has often been touted as a dark, furtive existence. Corporate life at ABC and The New York Times have never been noted as hotbeds of gay support. What was it like?

Everybody I’ve worked with knows I’m gay. All the people at the New York Times knows.

Did he ever find that it was a problem?

No. The funny thing is, that when my book [A Feast Made For Laughter] was published, Arthur Geld, who was the number two man at the time, it was his attitude to go into more detail about what it was like to be gay. It was never a problem.

And at ABC?

We had a boss named L. Henry. And once, after I’d been there about a year, I told L, I said, “L, you know, I’m gay.” And he shrugged his shoulders. The next day I told Dean [his roommate], and he said, “What did he do, give you a raise?”

You first came out publicly in your memoirs. Did you have any concerns about family, or “the public”?

I had a funny experience. When I was writing my memoirs, and the people I cared about, stating that I’m gay… I’ve never felt guilty about being gay, all my life. I’ve been through a lot of psychotherapy, but I can’t recall ever feeling guilty about homosexuality. And if anybody in the world wanted to know about my sexual persuasion, I’d tell them the truth. Why should I be ashamed, I didn’t ask for this… So, the only thing I cared about was my family, my niece and nephew, and my sister, I didn’t know if she cared or not. So I went down to Mississippi. We went to a restaurant. And I said, “The reason I came down, really, is to tell you that I’m writing my autobiography, and I’m going to talk about my homosexuality in it.” And so, nobody stopped eating, no dropped forks. So when I went to the men’s room, my niece turned to my sister and she said, “Did you hear what Craig said, that he’s going to tell people he’s gay?” And my sister said, “Look, my daddy always told him to tell the truth.”

Outside of being openly gay at work and in his memoirs, and socializing with friends, has he been active in the gay community?

I am not an active person. I get so tired of charities. I’m supposed to be writing the preface to an AIDS cookbook. God knows when it’ll ever come out. I wrote the preface. It’s done. I was host for a dinner, a gay dinner at God’s Love We Deliver… I got the New York Times to first cover AIDS. Larry Kramer mentioned that in his book.

Any “Life’s Most Embarrassing Moments?”

I was invited to a party at Harry Reasoner’s. A very private party. And I got drunk. And Richard Rogers was there. So, I got close to Richard Rogers, and I said, “Mr. Rogers, I’d give anything in the world just to tell somebody that you played the piano for me.” He shuffled along, he’s getting quite old, but he stood up and walked over to the piano, and I sang, with Richard Rogers playing the piano… My voice was terrible.

Forty some years of meeting chefs and restauranteurs from all over the world cannot help but leave an impression on a person. Who stands out as the most influential in Craig Claiborne’s life?

My favorite professor was Monsieur Tour. He had a great effect on me. He was a magnificent looking man, a great skier, extremely masculine. He was the head of table service… [sighs] I’m a very sentimental guy. I think Paul Bocuse [three-star chef in Lyon, France]. I just simply adore Paul Bocuse. He’s cold, a napoleon, that pose… Barry Wine [chef, The Quilted Giraffe, New York]. I love Barry. I think Pierre Franey. Because we worked together so long. Creating recipes together…

Anyone who stands out as the love of Craig Claiborne’s life?

Oh, I think my friend now. Jim. We met eleven years ago, the 3rd of July.

Favorite foods?

I have a passion for hot dogs. Once a month I sneak off and have a hot dog, with sauerkraut. I went to a restaurant called La Petite Tonkenoise [in Paris], vietnamese, and I was served the first course. I was devastated by it. It was a vietnamese spring roll, it’s called “cia gio”. I went to Saigon, in the middle of the war, just to learn to make that one dish.

What’s next on the horizon for Craig Claiborne?

Death. [laughs] That’s the only thing left for me. No, I don’t know. Well, having Jim as a friend. That’s what I live for. To be with him. We’re going to Scotland. And he’s planning a trip next year taking a European train, somewhere. But, that’s all I want. It’s an incredible experience.

As we parted ways back at the bus station, one anecdote kept running through my head.

I had a party once, a lot of TV people. And Harry Reasoner came up to me, from 60 Minutes, and said, “Craig,” he says, we’ve known each other for so many years, you are so obsessed with sex and with food, which do you prefer?” And I said, “Harry, why can’t you have both at the same time?”


I started writing food & wine columns for the Outlet Radio Network, an online radio station in December 2003. They went out of business in June 2005.

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No Dropped Forks

QW Magazine
September 1992

No Dropped Forks

I’ve been picked up in a lot of places by a lot of different people, in a lot of different ways. I never expected to be picked up at a bus stop, by Craig Claiborne, in a jeep. Then again, I never expected to be picked up by Craig Claiborne. Food editor at The New York Times for over three decades, he stirred the tastes of a public that hungered for food that hadn’t been scientifically prepared by home economists. Thousands of columns and a dozen books fed kitchen hints and food facts to millions. We talked in his East Hampton home, a Michael Feinstein album playing in the background. The interview was punctuated by lunch and a call from his lover of eleven years.

Dan Perlman: How did a boy from Sunflower, Mississippi come to open up the world food?

Craig Claiborne: It started the first time I ever had food outside the south. It was at the Chicago World’s Fair. I had a bowl of jellied consomme with lemon juice and tabasco. It was the best thing I’d ever ate in my life.

DP: But you didn’t start out to be a food writers?

CC: No. I was in the Navy. Casablanca, in World War II. I got an invitation from a handsome, young lieutenant to a Moroccan home. I realized there was more to life than eating soul food. When I left the Navy, I was taking the Ile de France back. I had Turbot a l’Infante. I took one bite and my god, I was transmogrified. I decided, I’ve got to learn how to cook French.

DP: How did you start?

CC: My mother arranged for me to go to hotel school in Switzerland. When I got back, I applied to get a job from Gourmet magazine. I ended up doing PR work for food accounts.

DP: How did you get to the Times?

CC: In those days there were no male food editors in the United States. My job was to escort all the lady food editors in New York around, play footsie with them, and sell them ideas. I had gotten to know Jane Nickerson at the Times. When I heard she was leaving, I went back to the office and, if you’ll pardon the expression, closeted myself, and wrote a note saying, do you think The New York Times would consider hiring a man as a food writer?

DP: What did she say?

CC: I didn’t hear from Jane. So I called herup. She said she didn’t want to get my hopes up, but they’d consider me. They called me on vacation on Fire Island and said I got the job. I went back out to the beach and started crying, saying, what will you ever write a column about? I saw this guy hauling in a bluefish and I said, by god, I’ll write an article about bluefish.

DP: Did you?

CC: I stayed at The New York Times thirty three years, and sometimes four and five columns a week, and I never wrote a column on bluefish. I don’t like bluefish.

DP: Any favorite foods?

CC: I have a passion for hot dogs. Once a month I sneak off and have a hot dog, with sauerkraut. And Vietnamese spring rolls, called “cha gio”. I went to Saigon, in the middle of the war, just to learn to make that one dish.

DP: What’s changed in the world of food writing?

CC: Word processors. I can’t stand them. I spent three solid days writing about this trip to China, and the third morning I pressed the wrong button. I erased the entire thing. Twenty seven pages. Gone with the wind.

DP: What stands out about the trip to China?

CC: The most notable meal I ate was in Chengdu. They brought us this little thing, about that long and that big. I pick it up with my chopsticks and I said, “what is this?” She says, “the bull’s penis.” I ate the goddamn thing, but it was so unappealing. Not because it was a penis, I’ve had enough of those in my mouth, but it was just so awful to eat.

DP: Was it hard being gay at the Times?

CC: Everybody I’ve worked with knows I’m gay. All the people at the New York Times knows. The funny thing is, when my memoirs were published, Arthur Geld, who was the number two man at the time, it was his attitude to go into more detail about what it was like to be gay. It was never a problem.

DP: Did you have any concerns about coming out publicly in your memoirs?

CC: I had a funny experience. The only thing I cared about was my family. I went down to Mississippi. I said, “The reason I came down is to tell you that I’m writing my autobiography, and I’m going to talk about my homosexuality in it.” Nobody stopped eating, no dropped forks. My niece turned to my sister and she said, “Did you hear what Craig said, that he’s going to tell people he’s gay?” And my sister said, “Look, my daddy always told him to tell the truth.”

DP: What’s next for Craig Claiborne?

CC: Death. That’s the only thing left for me. No, I don’t know. Well, having Jim as a friend. That’s what I live for. To be with him. We’re going to Scotland. And he’s planning a trip next year taking a European train, somewhere. But, that’s all I want. It’s an incredible experience.


QW was a short-lived magazine, the first “glossy” published in NYC that covered gay and lesbian culture and events in the city, and the precursor to what was resurrected as LGNY and later Gay City News. Back in the day, we put things on floppy discs and just knew that we’d have them and be able to access them forever. I know I wrote quite a few columns for them, particularly a humor column, but this seems to be the only piece I have a printout of.

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Officer is Busy Woman

Emery
Issue VI, Volume VI
March 21, 1975
pg. 3

Officer is Busy Woman

When Officer Tanya Padgett joined the Ann Arbor police force, she spent about two years on “limited duty,” writing tickets. When Michigan opened up its ranks to policewomen. Officer Padgett was one of three women selected to go to the academy. She then spent three years on Road Patrol, before transferring here to Huron in 1973. Now she’s our very own school police officer.

Officer Padgett covers all criminal offenses that happen on school property. She also helps people with problems they have. She says that this month assaults are down, but “The number one problem is larceny, especially from locker break-ins.”

There are two main problems Officer Padgett says she faces. The first is that a lot of people seem to think of police officers as ‘boogiemen.’ The second is a bit more serious. Many people are taking the five dollar ticket for possession of marijuana as if its nothing more than a traffic ticket. Officer Padgett says that this is not true. If you are under 17 it also goes on your juvenile record. If you are 17 or older it goes down on your records as ‘arrested for drug possession.’

Officer Padgett’s job is anything but routine. There is no set pattern to where her rounds take her.

“I play it by ear. Wherever there seems to be a problem, I go.”

When she has to arrest someone, she reports what happened to the person’s class principal, then their parents and last to the police department. Once a month she makes out a report about what has happened during the whole month.

Officer Padgett is married, has a nine year old son, and is attending Eastern Michigan University as a senior, majoring in Early Education.


It probably seems silly to include a few pieces from my high school newspaper, but hey, it’s where I got my start writing, so why not?

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