Saturday, May 30, 2009

The other shoe has dropped

Well, eight weeks after I was told my time at the paper was ending, the boss finally came by Friday and pulled the plug. It remains disappointing: We were doing good work, but not what management had in mind. But we couldn't both be right about how a newspaper should be run, and owning the business does tend to be a trump card.

At this point, it is mostly a relief. The past two months have been bizarre and stressful, and while it has been nice to continue to have a paycheck coming in, being out of that ridiculous situation has its own appeal. I've got one possibility floating out there which would be ideal, and, if that doesn't happen, I've got enough to get by modestly until something else turns up.

For the moment, I am not simply content but happy to identify with the office boy in this 1911 cartoon from Punch. (Click for larger version)

And Ziwa will be happy to get daily walks. Maybe twice daily!


Brian Fies said...

To hear you tell it, I may be sorrier about this turn than you are. Community newspapers are important and need people like you. I'm sure your skills will find a good home.

Not necessarily on the topic of your particular situation: I love newspapers, but I'm a lot less concerned about the twilight of newspapers than the twilight of journalism. It's so essential, and frightening numbers of people don't understand why, and seem to think bloggers can pick up the slack. It's hard to have an intelligent discussion with people coming from a different planet. Especially stupid people from a different planet.

ronnie said...

I can only echo everything Brian said.

You're resourceful and experienced and smart, and you'll land on your feet. Journalism as a whole isn't looking as health.

At least the suspended animation is over and you can move forward. Keep us posted, 'cause your virtual friends care in a most real and un-virtual way.

Sherwood Harrington said...

What Brian said. What ronnie said.

How is Ziwa holding up in life after Destry? How are you?

Mike said...

I'm doing okay. A new lead came in yesterday from a friend. Actually, potentially two, but one that seems stronger. Something will pan out.

Ziwa doesn't seem lonely but she's a lot barkier without Des. Ridgebacks aren't particularly vocal dogs, but her style of being The Dog In Charge includes a bark at things she feels need to be noted. When Des was here, I think she was content to glance over and see if he knew someone was in the next yard or arriving in the driveway, etc. And he never thought anything was worth barking at, except that he invariably gave a small "woof" when you were filling his bowl.

Sunday morning showed up a little early here on the East Coast today. And there are Cheeto crumbs all over my computer table for some reason.

Elise said...

Mike, I am very disappointed that this happened, because I really enjoyed having you as my editor & you were doing outstanding work. So I'm sad for me, though happy for you (and Ziwa) that you're exploring better options. Would love to keep in touch - send me an email?


Nostalgic for the Pleistocene said...

I wish them the best of luck, which i think they'll need, and wish you a good landing spot.

Dann said...

Best of luck on the hunt, Mike. Having you out of the journalism profession for any period of time is a loss.


Sandra said...

Mike, first, I'm so sorry to hear about Destry...he sounds like he was a wonderful friend.

As for the job, I'm confident better things are waiting for you! Good luck!

jtogyer said...

On the one hand, sorry to hear this, Deacon.

On the other hand, the best decision I ever made was to bail out of the newspaper business. I never saw so many small-minded, hide-bound, and professionally timid yet personally cruel people as I worked for in newspapering.

With my website, I'm still covering community news, but I report to me and my readers, not to elderly billionaires or trust-fund sponging relatives. Of course, the site isn't making a profit ... but luckily, I have a butter-'n-eggs job to pay the bills.

If I can he'p you out from Picksberg, let me know.