Carl Wernicke

Carl Wernicke is a native of Pensacola. He graduated from the University of Florida in 1975 with a degree in journalism. After 33 years as a reporter and editor, he retired from the Pensacola News Journal in April 2012; he spent the last 15 years at the PNJ as editor of the editorial page. He joined the Institute for Human and Machine Cognition on May 7, 2012 as Senior Writer and Communications Manager.

His hobbies include reading, gardening, hiking, enjoying the outdoors and wildlife around his home on Garcon Point and watching sports, especially the Florida Gators and New York Yankees. His wife, Patti, is a senior vice president at Gulf Winds Federal Credit Union.

Carl is a regular contributor to WUWF. His commentaries focus on life in and around the Pensacola area and range in subject matter from birding to downtown redevelopment and from preserving our natural heritage to life in local neighborhoods.

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Commentary
8:04 am
Wed October 15, 2014

Carl Wernicke: That Call Can Wait

Credit IHMC

  

   Apparently every community in America takes pride in having the worst drivers, and certainly Northwest Florida can make its case.  But the advent of the cell phone is taking things to a new and scary level.

   Leaving the University of West Florida recently, I was at the light at Nine Mile Road and University Parkway. Now, we’re all used to aggressive drivers who cheat the light and push through the intersection after it turns red. They do this trusting that the drivers on the other side will take a moment after the light turns green to hit the accelerator. 

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Commentary
3:47 pm
Tue October 7, 2014

Carl Wernicke: Autumn Beauty Revealed

Credit IHMC

Saturday morning I was driving down Mary Kitchens Road on Garcon Point when I began to ask myself, when did all those wildflowers pop up on the shoulders? Sure, I had been seeing the fall flowers coming on, but how did they go from coming on to a cornucopia overnight?

Well, they didn’t. It just seemed that way.

Before I say why, let me backtrack a bit.

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Commentary
7:04 pm
Wed October 1, 2014

Carl Wernicke: The Pleasure Of Small-Time

Credit IHMC

I have always loved newspapers. They’ve been called the first draft of history, an elegant phrase. And what I have found is that the smaller the paper, the more intimate the news. So as a traveler I have long made it a practice to buy the weekly and other small publications wherever I go, to try to get a sense of that community.

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Commentary
11:06 am
Wed September 17, 2014

Ivan, nature and history

WUWF Commentator Carl Wernicke

When Hurricane Ivan waded ashore about 2 a.m. on Sept. 16, 2004, I was holed up inside the Pensacola News Journal offices in downtown Pensacola. Water was up to the tops of the parking meters on Jefferson Street, and seeping into the building at various spots; we had used rope to tie the door by the photo lab shut, and it seemed unlikely that the big metal bay doors on the loading dock were going to hold much longer given the agonizing noises they were giving off.

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Commentary
4:47 pm
Tue September 9, 2014

What's in a name - or a signature?

WUWF Commentator Carl Wernicke

The most unsettling thing about the fast pace of advancing technology for people of my generation may simply be the vertigo that comes from having the sand beneath your feet shifting so often.

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Commentary
12:09 pm
Fri August 29, 2014

Carl Wernicke: Be A Mentor

Credit IHMC

Working as a newspaper writer for 35 years imbued me with a healthy dose of cynicism. Why? It’s not just all the bad news. Reporters and editors are exposed to far worse stuff than ever gets into the news pages, and unfortunately we learn a lot about the dark side of human nature.

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Commentary
4:49 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

Carl Wernicke: I'm Already Living In The Future

Credit IHMC

“If you could choose a time to live, would you rather go back 100 years, or forward 100 years?”

That’s the question a co-worker asked me recently. My initial response was, go back (although I’d choose the 1920s or ‘30s).

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Commentary
11:06 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Carl Wernicke: Marvelous Moonrise

Credit IHMC

The occurrence earlier this month of a so-called super moon, which occurs when a full moon coincides with a close orbital approach to earth, prompted my wife and I to find a good spot to observe moonrise.

We set up our folding chairs on the shore of Blackwater Bay by 8 p.m., anticipating moonrise at 8:03. However, storm clouds suggested less than optimal conditions for observing a celestial event.

But even with the obscured horizon, we weren’t disappointed.

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Commentary
1:14 pm
Thu June 26, 2014

Carl Wernicke: I'm Really Nice

Credit IHMC

All of us have times when we are less than sociable. While I know that I am in reality a cuddly, warm human being, this doesn’t always come across to others. My mother used to call me anti-social, and my wife has deemed me a curmudgeon. But who cares what they think, right? I know the real me, and, well, modesty keeps me from being too boastful.

Still, I admit that sometimes I just can’t deal with all the sweetness and light.

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Commentary
5:02 pm
Wed June 18, 2014

Carl Wernicke: Producing Energy To Care

Credit IHMC

With all the concern about climate change, it’s no surprise that energy production is so much in the news today. It’s a big change for a society that basically assumed that energy came from the light switch, while food came from the grocery store. 

And just as the sustainable food movement has prompted a much-needed understanding of the real costs of cheap food, the energy crisis has opened our eyes to the real cost of all those lights your kids forget to turn off when they leave the room.

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