Come on, sing it with me: Letters ... we get letters ... we get stacks and stacks of letters ...
That was a staple of the old Perry Como television show I can remember my parents insisting we would watch on the one-and-only TV in the household of my youth.
Como would use that intro to respond to requests to sing a song or two requested by his TV audience.
That jingle stuck in my head, and when I was charged with redesigning these newspaper pages a couple of decades later, it's why we labeled the letters to the editor column ... "We get letters ..."
So for the past 30 years, virtually every time an Opinion page has run in the Banner Graphic, invariably it includes the section "We get letters ..." devoted to your opinions, or as Rod Serling used to intone in his classic "Twilight Zone" TV intro ... "submitted for your approval."
Be assured, we always appreciate any and all letters we receive. We love good dialogue. We're often intrigued by the choice of topics.
And we understand that many community organizations like to use the space we readily provide to thank those who have made their recent event or mission possible, even though a list of names and thank-yous isn't always compelling reading.
But we'd like to change all that. Or at least tweak it. Put the onus on the community and our readers to generate a more targeted dialogue.
And in an attempt to do so, we have created a product we're calling "The Pulse of Putnam County."
Perhaps you've noticed some of the house ads we've been running, thanks to the wizardry of ad manager Merlin Maltsberger.
"The Pulse," slated for a Sept. 27 kickoff edition, will be dedicated to an open-forum discussion of issues affecting Putnam people and communities. Each edition will contain articles addressing topics of local, state and national issues.
Topics for discussion will be posted two weeks prior to the publication date in the newspaper and on our website. Readers may submit their thoughts and comments on any of each issue's designated topics via email to the Banner Graphic Editorial Department, in care of firstname.lastname@example.org, or via mail at P.O. Box 509, Greencastle 46135.
All submissions must be accompanied by the author's name, address and a contact phone number. Once reviewed by the Editorial Department, the selected submissions will be published in the "Pulse" section of the Banner Graphic.
Of course, the Editorial Department reserves the right to edit any article for length, clarity and unprintable content as necessary.
We have already received a few responses for the section.
Stacks and stacks of letters? Not yet.
So get writing, Putnam County, we want to check your pulse.