Newscoma Has Moved
Wednesday, December 06, 2006
  The One About The Dog Story Uproar I spent much of yesterday dealing with an identity theft story that was downright scary. A social security number seen on a desk and allegedly taken to set up an online scam of astronomical proportions as well as a man's lost insurance card lost two local citizens a great deal of money. Imagine being stolen from and not even knowing it. But what did I end up dealing with that gave me the headache, you guessed it right campers, a story about a Dog Spa. Yup, the embezzlement case I've been talking about, the Goodyear strike, the identity theft story that reaches into Kentucky and all across West Tennessee, federal drug trafficking charges handed down where the case is being heard 50 miles away, a violent child rape case we've been handling and a theft at our work where Tammy Lynette and myself have to sit in court this morning were all secondary because I was second guessed on a minor story about a dog spa and adopting animals at Christmas. The breakdown (not mine this time) came from a story about animals at Christmas and a woman who has a really hip little pet spa (she marries dogs, helps find families pets and a grooming/boarding business). I got a cool reception from TPTB yesterday, didn't know what it was about and realized it was because staff at the other paper apparently had a hissy fit over a minor feature that had a dog in front of a Christmas tree. Once again, I was treated like the village idiot by a woman I barely know who copyedits our final draft at the other paper who questioned the "integrity" of the story. I wish I could get paid for being the village idiot, but I digress. Of course, I laughed in the beginning because it was ludicrous but when I started hearing stuff from the insert crew about the fits over at our parent company, I had to give them a call. We don't have the Associated Press. We generate almost all of our own copy because pages have to be filled. Hard news goes on the front page and features are interspersed throughout the paper. Welcome to the world of a smalltown newspaper. So we fill the pages with stories about local business owners, quirky local "celebrities" and funky slice of life copy. And a Christmas story about a dog caused a big deal. Once the line of communication was opened by me speaking in a very low tone which Homer and Tammy Lynette know is always an indication I'm madder than heck, we talked about it. There are no winners, believe me, and I'm torn and it goes back to the value thing I talk about a lot. Do I go back into Victim's Assistance? Do I go back to writing grants? Or do I keep doing this because I love it but feel like I'm fighting goofy fights and spending a lot of personal energy over dumb stuff that, quite frankly, isn't healthy for yours truly. Alas, the life of a smalltown newspaper editor. In a sidenote, Homer just read this and started laughing hysterically. "You're kidding," she snorted. "Nope." I replied and started laughing with her. It is pretty funny in retrospect. 
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