Emily Bohatch | News Editor
Soon-to-be-former Athens Mayor Paul Wiehl’s favorite colors are black, purple and blue. He likes to garden and keep bees out in the county. He once wore a bubble wrap suit during the Athens Halloween Block Party. He is licensed to officiate weddings.
No reporter can accuse Wiehl of not being an open, accommodating and forthcoming human being.
As The Post’s former city writer and now as a news editor who is far too invested in the ongoings at the Athens City Building, I’ve spent my fair share of time in a room with the mayor discussing policy, projects undertaken by the city and Wiehl’s personal life (something he often brought up without even being asked).
Anyone who’s had the pleasure of recording quotes from the former scientist turned public servant knows that the story is always bound to be colorful. I can’t begin to count the amount of times I put a star in my notes next to something I knew was going to be the perfect lead for a story.
With Mayor-elect Steve Patterson being sworn in Monday, I figured it was time for me to tip my hat to Wiehl, a source I knew I could always count on to give a story that extra something — whether it be talking about his weekend plans or comparing his salary to the price of various produce items.
Without further ado, here are some of the best quotes from Wiehl to this Post reporter.
“Trying moment? I don’t know. You know, it all blurs. It’s really traumatic. I probably blocked it out. I was so traumatized. It’ll take years of therapy to dig it out again, I’m sorry to say.” — On his most trying moment as mayor
“We can’t just take taxpayers’ funds and throw it at businesses. I don’t think they have enough money for that. They’re farmers.” — On building a new facility for the Athens Farmers Market
“I will tell you that everyone tries in an event to keep things clean. But then, when everybody gets good and drunk, nobody cares.” — On nuisance parties and the trash law
“If we don’t build a pool, people will be swimming in the Hocking.” — On construction of a set of new municipal pools
“Have a good time, and be nice to each other.” — On Halloween Block Party shenanigans
“We’re a city, not a wilderness.” — On an ordinance that requires Athens residents to mow their lawns
“So, when I was talking about bananas, a pound of bananas, which is about 59, 69 depending on if it’s organic or not at Kroger’s or something, am I making that much money when it comes down to produce? And when you get down to it, what are the critical parts? Food, shelter, water. The fact that I move this paper around, that’s nothing. I can’t eat it. Maybe at the end of this paper trail is some bananas. Now I sound like a chimpanzee.” — On his interview with NBC News and said during a Q&A on his time as mayor
Emily Bohatch | News Editor