Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

News Junkie Shares Obsession for Summarizing Pittsburgh

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

News Junkie Shares Obsession for Summarizing Pittsburgh

Article excerpt

Adam Shuck is a news junkie's news junkie. Every weekday lunch hour, he shoots an email to thousands of subscribers telling them what they should be reading about the city he loves.

That city would be Pittsburgh. Mr. Shuck, 29, moved to Lawrenceville from Brooklyn five years ago. There, he was an insatiable consumer of culture. Here, he's found the breathing room to be one of its creators.

He spends hours each morning compiling what he's liked or despised from various media in the past 24 hours. He sends it all out, at no charge, in a 3,000-word package with Internet links under the heading "Eat That, Read This."

Pittsburgh magazine just named Mr. Shuck one of 15 Future Power Brokers as "a must-read among members of the city's power set - if only to ensure that they weren't among the day's targets."

I met Mr. Shuck at one of his favored haunts, Hambone's on Butler Street, where they have his favorite beer - Big Hop from East End Brewing - and enough privacy for a mid-afternoon talk about the "crazy company" that Pittsburgh magazine has him in.

He's honored, even if there's something odd about me interviewing him after another publication lauded him for commenting on media such as mine. It seemed an eternal loop, and perhaps eternally loopy, like that maiden on the Land O'Lakes butter logo holding a butter box picturing herself holding a butter box ad infinitum.

When I told him as much, he nodded and said, "The Droste effect."

Sure enough, when I looked it up, that is the term for a picture appearing within itself. It's that kind of casual comprehensiveness that has seen his newsletter's audience grow from a few friends to a virtual Heinz Hall sellout in little more than a year.

Mr. Shuck's people are subscriber-only and he likes it that way. "Eat That, Read This" began in June 2014 when he was an administrator at the University of Pittsburgh Humanities Center, a job he'd leave May 1 to focus on the newsletter. He's aiming to grow the concept into a blog with other collaborators.

Scanning the news always was a pastime, and it meshes nicely with an obsession with all things Pittsburgh. "There's no sleeping in" as he powers through the occasional Friday morning hangovers to make sure he meets his self-imposed deadline of 12:30 p. …

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