Telling the truth through fiction

John's Blogs

Take the Stairs

John Nuckel

Frank sat on a bench looking out at the Hudson River. He was in rehab, again. The facility was just north of Beacon in the Hudson Valley. His first time was around twenty years ago. He had fallen into the life of booze and coke with the late eighties Wall Street crowd. Down to the seaport for a gallon of beer than a few lines for the drive to the Hampton’s. Soon enough he started to miss the ride to the island. Choosing to stay behind to drink and snort alone. Hang out at the local pub. The girlfriend went...

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Shout fish!

John Nuckel

Forgive me if you’ve heard this story before. A gentleman who is known to embellish shared it with me in a downtown bar. There’s my disclaimer. I’m pretty sure it isn’t true, but we all know that those are the best stories. Besides, whether it is completely true or not has no relevance to a storyteller like myself, so I’m going to share it with you.                   A young man was working at a NYC real estate firm. It was a family company. The firm was formed by Russian immigrants many years ago. Real estate in Manhattan is a rough...

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Volunteers preview

John Nuckel

DRIVE   The Volunteers Trilogy Episode One         JOHN NUCKEL       “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how a strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the...

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It happened to be Music

John Nuckel

Recently I was crying in a synagogue in Prague. It was the music that got to me. Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. Played by four violins a cello and bass, accompanied by a trumpet. Let me back track a bit since I wrote the last line first. If you would have told me as an Irish Catholic kid growing up in the welfare apartments of my town that I would be crying in a synagogue listening to music I would have stopped you at the word crying. In fact, it is likely that I would have stopped you with a fist....

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Teddy Wilson

John Nuckel

                                                     Teddy Wilson One of the most important events in American music happened at New York’s Carnegie Hall in 1938. There was a Benny Goodman concert that night. It actually was radical to have Goodman there at all playing his brand of swing music on the stage of such a prestigious venue. The seminal moment came when he brought out his quartet to play Sing Sing Sing with a Swing. The quartet that evening was...

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