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Friday, June 22, 2012

A sense of purpose being fulfilled

Part of the reason for my irrational optimism in owning the newspaper, I think, was that I was extremely happy doing what I was doing. I could almost palpably feel a clicking, an alignment of the planets, a sensation of my physical being sliding into a perfectly formed pod, a round peg in a round hole. My purpose in life being fulfilled.
Newspapers, for sure, were my thing, my calling. But this, this was even beyond that. Being the owner and editor of a weekly newspaper felt so perfect for me, not only in the sense of being gratifying work for me, but also because I felt the inverse, that I was perfect for the work.
Almost immediately I felt that everything I had done in newspapers, everything I had learned, everything I had enjoyed and appreciated about newspapers was finally coming to bear all at once in this one job.
I loved local journalism, city budgets and tax levies. I was just about the only journalist I knew who was actually good at math and could accurately calculate percentage changes.
I had always loved photography. (My parents had given me a Pentax K-1000 as my high school graduation present, and I loved taking and processing black and white photos.)
I had done page design extensively at The News-Herald. I had learned Quark and gone through a pagination changeover.
Sure, I knew about supplemental levies and property taxes, but I also knew what a sweep play was, what a 3-2 zone defense was, the difference between a tractor and a combine, who had written last year’s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. I felt I knew a little bit about a lot.
All of these skill sets came to bear on this job. I would write about sewer rates one day, interview the head of the Farm Service Agency the next, cover a football game on Friday, write a feature story about a girl who received a liver transplant and cover a school board meeting Tuesday.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Scott,
    I went to SU at the same time as you an I think your wife is my old buddy from Newhouse that I have been looking for for many years. Would you mind asking her if she is the same Nicola I visited in London?  My last name was Cacciabue back then.
    Thanks so much,