C.J.
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Trish Van Pilsum talks as if she’ll never return to TV news, where she last worked as an investigative reporter for Fox 9.

In July 2014 she left Fox 9 to take care of her husband, who was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. “You know, I usually take the summers off and so I was due to come back by fall. [Then] he began a course of treatment at the Mayo which involved a lot of driving, so I did not go back because I felt like I could not maintain the work schedule I’ve always maintained, which has been real rigorous, and care for him. He’s had one scan since he got done with treatment and it was a pretty good scan, but you know, my time with him is still really precious. When I was working I worked intensely. I worked a lot of evenings and weekends. Now he’s back at work but that’s time that I now would like to be home with him and making healthy meals and doing more of the workload around the house. For now, I’m going to be at home.”

They have two grown-up kids.

Trish Van Pilsum as an empty-nest housewife just does not compute.

Van Pilsum laughed hard and said, “Well … I am … and I love it!

Van Pilsum razzed me about my less-than-stellar powers of observation; I just now became curious about her absence.

Naked Truth: I was reminded by an early September e-mail from “Gail Foster” which read: “Is she OK? She did such good work. Miss her reports.”

Piling on, Van Pilsum said, “Apparently you haven’t missed me! That’s so sad.”

Her summer hours didn’t help but I basically saw Van Pilsum when she was at the station complicating my morning makeup room routine with her Art of Hair makeup artist Bria Uzzell while shooting sweeps promos. Van Pilsum has won numerous Emmys in 10 years at Fox 9 and 18 years at WCCO-TV. She could not give me an exact number Wednesday because “in the past few years I have been giving the trophies to the photographers or producers.”

Asked if she’ll ever return to the TV, Van Pilsum said: “I’m not sure. We’ll just have to see how this goes.”

Cannot imagine she won’t.

What was Ragnar thinking?

Tyler Marchiniak was looking very much the part of Ragnar Jr. at Fran Tarkenton’s Costco book signing Saturday.

Marchiniak said he would do it for less than the $1,500 a game Joe Juranitch was making as Ragnar before his failed bid to get $20,000 per game.

Marchiniak is a man of few words but he’s got a buddying “momanager” in Lori Ertl.

“I’ve been telling him for years he should call the Vikings and ask to be Ragnar Jr.,” Ertl said. “He just thinks I’m kidding. I said, ‘No, seriously. You’ve got the look.’ And he just loves the Vikings and can’t stand the Packers. He just would really like to do it, so. He’s got a college degree in physiology, anatomy and forensics.”

Juranitch needs to get his Mom or some other motherly figure to grease the skids to back his Sunday job.

Not everybody in the media thinks Juranitch is greedy or crazy for having the audacity to think his pay should go from $1,500 to $20,000 a game “to wear fur and ride a Harley and look Scandinavian,” as Tony Reali introduced the subject on ESPN’s “Around the Horn.”

“Of course” the Vikings should have met Ragnar’s salary demand, said sportswriter Woody Paige. “Do you remember the San Diego Chicken? He was getting $50,000 an appearance. Rocky the mascot from the Nuggets was getting six figures every year.”

Tony Kornheiser on “PTI” however, bid “Happy Trails to Ragnar the Viking … unofficial mascot for 21 years. Wilbon, I believe Mr. Ragnar overestimated his bargaining position as he is now unemployed by the Vikings, who can find 100 people who want to do that job. Are you insane? You’re done!”

Mike Wilbon said, “Ya think? What moron is whispering in your ear: Yo, dude, you gotta get paid!”

I think Ragnar looked at the new Vikings stadium and had an out-of-body experience that made him think, If Vikings owners can afford that. …

Ragnar shouldn’t have let his finger stay on that 0 so long and typed $2,000.

C.J. can be reached at cj@startribune.com and seen on Fox 9’s “Jason Show.” E-mailers, please state a subject; “Hello” does not count. Attachments are not opened.