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Nick Coleman


The State I'm In


About Me

Me, and my town.

Contact me at nick.coleman@theuptake.org and/or follow me on Twitter: @nickcoleman

I am a career “mainstream” journalist repenting for my sins by working now as the Executive Editor of The Uptake , a non-profit citizen journalism news site based in St. Paul-Minneapolis that recently was saluted by The Freedom of the Press Foundation for its work in promoting transparency and accountability. I’m proud of The UpTake, but, just to be clear: All opinions expressed on this blog are no one’s fault but my own. I am a life-long Minnesotan whose ancestors came to the Minnesota River Valley as refugees from The Great Hunger in Ireland before Minnesota was a state, and who later settled in St. Paul, which now is overrun with Colemans.

The Old Man's bumper sticker, 1970. He lost.

I have six great kids, three of whom are grown, with three more in the St Paul public schools, a wife who is the best writer I know, and a sense of outrage and a thirst for justice that I received from my Old Man, from my feisty mother, Bridgie, and from the Sisters of St Joseph of Carondelet, who taught me everything I needed to know when I was growing up in the West Seventh Street area of St. Paul, in St James parish, where the stained glass windows were devoted to The Beatitudes and where the biggest Holy Dudes were Christopher Columbus and Archbishop John Ireland. I thought they stood next to The Throne.  I am still a Catholic, or rather, still a bad Catholic.

I hope God is OK with that.

John Ireland between Father Hennepin and Father Galtier, the Cathedral of St Paul in the crook of his arm.

Other stuff about me includes hockey dad, coach, bike rider, x-c skiier, camper, hiker, music lover, Irish citizen (dual citizenship; look into it) and annual reciter of blood-curdling Irish poems on St Patrick’s Day. Go ahead, ask me to recite Who Dares to Say?

One last thing: I need to say that one of my brothers, Chris, is the mayor of St Paul, but that I do not deserve any credit for that fact, or take any responsibility. He handles the job on his own. I also am his Godfather, having been shoved up to the Baptismal Font by my parents, who had more children than they had friends. “Uncle Nick” did the baptism: The Rev. Nicholas J. Finn, of Cloghane, County Kerry, and St Paul. He was my grandmother’s uncle, and I was his namesake.

I love St Paul, and I love Minnesota, and I don’t like what some people are trying to do to them.

That’s why I’m here.

 

My old trusty Royal 440