Wednesday, May. 19, 2004
I have not died. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.
Today was local elections, it's 2AM, the news done and emailed, web page is updated, and boss is toast if he wakes me up at 5am to ask how to spell 'knave'. I even fixed his email over the virtual private network.
If I am revived in the morning I will try to post a more coherent entry tomorrow night. For now I plan to curl up with a nice strong drink and then with a nice hot dream, fan turned on, and will hopefully come up with something worth writing by the time I sit in front of this computer sometime tomorrow after work.
In the interim, I've been playing with new codes on my personal site and have learned to swear at the script kiddies who design these nifty little gadgets for your page then neglect to tell you how to get them working. I'm learning but it's taking a lot of swearing and a lot of research for even the simplest things.
The one bright spot of my day - while waiting for election results (which do NOT come out on neat little electronic gadgets you can plug into your radio/tv station, at least not here) one of the local City Managers sat down and started talking to me. I'ved talked to him at different times regarding news stories, etc, but since the 'big story' was on hold during the ballot count, he we were just more or less shooting the breeze.
Out of the blue he told me, "I've been wanting to tell you this for a while. I've been here for seven years, and in that time, you're the best thing I've seen happen to this community." I won't go into the details, but he went on to give me the biggest compliment anyone has ever given me in terms of the work that I do. It was one of few times in my life I've been speechless and didn't have laryngitis.
That follows a couple of weeks after receiving a thank-you letter I got from a project developer, who thanked me for taking the time to come out and tour their work site but also for taking an interest in the community.
The one thing I haven't said in this diary before is that the community is a big reason I bust my chops. None of the other local media (and I use the term loosely) bothers to cover 99% of what I do, despite the fact that some of them have four or five times the number of personnel we've got. It's not that there's no news out there. It's that it takes effort and caring about what's going on, and the personality and management who will report without worrying about whether it will make waves.
I raised four children, alone. I don't intimidate easily.
Yeah, I'm tired of the slave-labor hours, and I'd like a better paycheck. But I like having the autonomy and the community support to get the information that I do. I like having a reputation for fairness, honesty, and accuracy. I don't know if I could replicate the respect I've got here if I moved to a larger market, where the mantra is, as Dangerspouse pointed out, 'if it ain't cash in our pockets, it's not news'.
At the risk of being branded a broadcast blasphemer, money isn't everything. If it was, every despot on earth would be worshipped.
Okay, so there are plenty of despots in Hollyweird. But you know what I mean.
Before - After
In the grander scheme of things, no soul can truly be replaced. Each one of us has a place in the universal tapestry. We each contribute our own color and texture. When one thread is snipped too soon, it distorts all the threads around it. Other lives can unravel and tear. If the wrong thread is ripped away, the whole fabric of life becomes dangerously fragile.
- LeiLani, aka Radiogurl aka Bright Opal (1957 - )