Gary Borders

Host of "Borderline"

Gary Borders has been an East Texas journalist and editor for more than 40 years. He works now as a freelance writer, editor and photographer. You can see his work at He has written for World Wildlife magazine, Texas Monthly, Texas Observer and Airstream Life.

During his career, Gary served as editor and publisher of newspapers in Longview, Lufkin, Nacogdoches, Mount Pleasant, San Augustine, Cedar Park and Junction City, Kansas. He also taught journalism at Kilgore College. He began writing a column in 1982 and has written at least once weekly since without fail, though there are quite a few he would like to retract. The New York Times News Service distributed his column nationally from 1995 through 2009. His pieces have been published in the Detroit Free Press, Miami Herald, Austin American-Statesman, Palm Beach Post, Atlanta Journal-Constitution and — his personal favorite — the Maui News.

Borders has published two collections of columns, the “Loblolly Chronicles” in 2010 and “Behind and Beyond the Pine Curtain” in 2005. The University of Texas Press published “A Hanging in Nacogdoches” in 2006, his account of a brutal murder in 1902 in the state’s oldest town, and the trial that followed. He is currently researching another book, which should be completed by the end of 2015. He is also threatening to release another collection of columns.

Borders and his wife, Dr. Julie Teel-Borders, a professor at LeTourneau University, live in Longview with their daughter, Abbie, a senior at Trinity School of Texas. He also has two grown daughters, about whom he has been writing columns since Ronald Reagan was president. They have long ceased to be embarrassed about it, though Abbie protests occasionally.

Ways to Connect

I drove by the old S&H Green Stamp store on High Street in Longview the other day, on the way to taking Sam the Dog to the veterinarian for routine vaccinations. One has to have been on this planet a while to remember S&H Green Stamps. But I bet many of you reading this at least remember your moms collecting the stamps, even if you did not personally do so.

Let us pause a moment to acknowledge the death of America’s most famous headline writer. Vincent Musetto died Tuesday from cancer at 74 at his home in the Bronx. He was retired from the New York Post, famed for its screaming and often outlandish headlines.

Newspaper offices and trains have gone hand-in-hand throughout my checkered career. This current gig is no exception.

We moved our office downtown last August, on my birthday. It was not my intent to celebrate the final year of my sixth decade on this planet by sweating profusely and risking back injury while moving desks, filing cabinets and the like. But that is how it worked out. Football season was set to begin the following Friday, and I wanted us settled in our new digs before that commenced.

The opening scene of the first episode of “Newsroom” is vivid. Jeff Daniels portrays anchor Will McAvoy, who is seated at a panel discussion in a university auditorium. A student asks, “What makes America the greatest country in the world?”

Others on the panel respond with the usual patter about freedom and the American way. McAvoy tries to avoid answering the question. But the moderator keeps pressuring him to respond, and he finally does. It is a tough scene to watch. McAvoy replies,“It’s not the greatest country in the world, professor. That’s my answer.”

In the course of a recent day, I did the following:

• While driving to work, listened to music stored on my phone and played by some miracle on my vehicle’s stereo through Bluetooth technology.

• Bought tickets to an upcoming Red Sox – Rangers game and stored the tickets on my phone. When we get to the ballpark, all I had to do is let the person at the turnstile scan my phone screen.

• Watched video on my laptop of B.B. King playing “The Thrill is Gone” in a tribute after his death.