Originally from America’s Midwest, Guy Robert Arseneau grew up in the small town of Kankakee, Illinois. Located sixty miles south of Chicago, but light years removed from it culturally, Guy describes his hometown as a place dominated by “Red Necks, The White Sox and Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer.” Growing up,” he states, “I was probably the only six-year old who watched the TODAY show on a regular basis. The view that show presented made New York City seem so glamorous and busy. Other kids watched cartoons before going to school, but I had enough Looney Tooners with my grade school nuns.” In his early twenties and with college behind him, he realized a life-long dream by moving to The Big Apple. “I wanted to work in television and live a glamorous life in a penthouse,” he notes. Reality was somewhat different. “For my first year,” he recalls, “Life in New York City meant working as a messenger and living in a residential hotel that was little more than a flophouse. One good thing, though, as a street messenger I certainly learned my way around the city very fast.”
A little more than a year after his arrival, luck smiled on him when he was hired by ABC Television News. “When I started at ABC, the Watergate scandal was just unfolding, so I had a front row seat on this American tragedy. After three years of being on call around the clock, working weekends, holidays and triple shifts I had had enough ‘glamour’ to last me a lifetime,” Arseneau remembers. “I spent the next ten years working in the editorial department at PEOPLE magazine.”
After leaving PEOPLE magazine, Guy embarked on a career as a freelance writer. “I’ve been under contract to The New York Times Syndication division, had my work published in the New York Daily News, Gallery Magazine and other assorted publications, locally and around the nation. An article I wrote on ibogaine, a substance that stops drug addiction with one treatment, led to appearances on New York City and Chicago radio stations.”
Regularly featured in INSIDE JERSEY MAGAZINE, Guy writes on a variety of subjects and issues that affect the daily lives of his fellow citizens. “I want to give a voice to what needs to be said,” Guy states, with a strong degree of passion. “In our current age of politically correct trendiness it’s more important than ever to say flatly that the ‘emperor has no clothes’. For the last thirty years we’ve described him as ‘wardrobe challenged’ and just look at where we’ve ended up.”
I’m having such a hard time using the word “was” to describe Guy because in my heart I don’t want to believe it. I can’t process the fact that I have to refer to somebody I loved like a part of my own family in the past tense. There has to be one last deadline he has to meet, one last article to be churned out giving social commentary in only the way he could. There has to be one last evening sipping espresso and watching old movies, one last venting session about young people these days, one last chance to sit and tell him all of the ways he made my life so much better by just being his friend all of these years. There has to be one last phone call, one last “Thanking You For Your Time, This Time, Until Next Time, Guy Bob”. He can’t be gone. I won’t accept it. I won’t accept one of the most honest and selfless individuals I’ve ever met, someone who was there for me even when I had nothing left to offer him but friendship is in Heaven right now; although knowing him, he’s most likely griping to the angels about my grammar.
It is impossible for me to use the word “was” for Guy Arseneau because he is. Guy Arseneau IS my best friend, my mentor, my family, my venting partner, and a massive part of my life. Guy Arseneau IS the person who I owe a huge debt of gratitude to just for being such a beautiful, real, genuine person. Guy Arseneau IS and will always be a very cherished part of my heart. Until the day we meet again I will love him, I will respect him, I will be indebted to him, I will miss him more than words can say, and most importantly, I will think of him with a smile every time I’m tempted to answer a question with “no that’s ok, I’m Catholic.”
-Joseph M. Lara, Co-Founder and Publisher, Forest Hills Celebrity & Entertainment Magazine (2006 – 2013)