Gary Schneeberger: Telling Stories
A Kenosha Public Relation
So you are a guy who does this kinda stuff for real..what the hell do you even expect me to ask you first to get this ball rolling?
If you were a tree, what kind of wooden bat would be made out of you?
My Mom bought me an electric typewriter when I was 10 or so. The first thing I used it for was writing scripts I could act out with my school friends and neighborhood buddies. That birthed in me a love of telling stories. And telling stories has been key to every gig I’ve had since then.
What is the biggest myth about life in LA?
True myth? Even the pizza delivery guy drives a Mercedes. Untrue myth? Jack Bauer could save the world in 24 hours in that city and not spend at least a third of it stuck in traffic.
What is the PR approach regarding the gigantic loss of The Blade?
Tell the truth. No spin needed. Steve lived large, loomed large, left a large legacy and leaves a large hole behind in the hearts of those who loved him. What a blessing it was to be one of those people for 45 years.
For a man of words, inducting Steve Hess into the Kenosha Softball Hall of Fame had to be a HOF moment for you as well.
Honor fought with pride that day. Honor that he chose me, pride in him for all he accomplished.
You got your choice..2 on 2 fastpitch, w/ strike zone square painted on the wall…just two dudes taking turns running football pass patterns…or a driveway hoop game of 21 Knockout?
Driveway hoops — if it’s my childhood driveway. I was Steph Curry in my garage-hoop house in the late ’70s/early’80s.
Why have faith?
Faith in God got me sober. It not only saved my life but made it worth saving.
What is the story your loved ones tell when they are telling the success story of Schnee?
I was always telling stories. It wasn’t good enough to play cops-and-robbers, I wrote scripts (as I mentioned a few questions back) so my friends knew the plot and their lines as the playing progressed. My Dad, at 93, still tells people those scripts are what got me started down my career path.
Current thoughts on KTown in general?
It has been remarkable to me how even with the cosmetic changes and growth, the character of the city remains the same. The author Thomas Wolfe famously said you can’t go home again. He was wrong. Moving back after 27 years away — honestly, no hyperbole — it’s like I never left. My soul is at peace here.
Your Mt Rushmore of public figures..past or present.
George Washington, Babe Ruth, Hunter S. Thompson and Stan Lee. Washington founded the country I love and am blessed to call home; Ruth made baseball America’s pastime and was the first athlete to benefit from relentless public relations; Thompson changed the face of my first profession, journalism, and inspired a new level in my writing; and Lee, as editor of Marvel Comics in the ’70s, lit a match to my imagination that still burns today.
One final question, was Ralph Nudi the finest 14″ softball team ever assembled in Kenosha, WI?
Without question. My late brother Jeff was technically the manager, but really the GM. He was the Theo Epstein of the Golden Age of Kenosha softball and should be in the Hall of Fame. He built a 14″ powerhouse in the ’80s by combining the best players from Tirabassi’s and Pitts — the top 12″ teams in the city, and big-time rivals. How relentless was he in pursuit of winning? He released his little brother and replaced me with a far better second baseman — Hall of Famer Jeff Clark. That’s cold. And worthy of recognition
*for the record, the answer that he would have given to question 1, which I should have asked but I’m a sham of an interviewer, was…”a 35/34 Louisville Slugger with Reggie Jackson’s name on it”.