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Dear dimwit on the phone

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Starman, Jan 21, 2010.

  1. jlee

    jlee Well-Known Member

    I hear ya, and I’m not trying to pretend to know the situation, just being someone in your corner. I’m sure I’m far from alone there.

    But still, fuck em. May they get all the rewards of being chronically butthurt by small perceived slights against their former high school.
     
    OscarMadison likes this.
  2. swingline

    swingline Well-Known Member

    At a former paper, our staff picked the weekly high school games and ran our pictures with the picks and our season total. Being a total contrarian, and not really understanding why I was picking when I was a desker, I always picked the underdog. After one Friday night game ended with the underdog winning, one of our writers came into the office and said the coach held up our paper and said, "Only us and swingline believed in us!"

    Another time, I was eating lunch at the local bar we always went to and overheard people talking about our picks, specifically me picking the underdogs. I was maybe 10 feet away and in full view of this table, but no one noticed me. One old boy had his dander up a bit and said, "That swingline, he's just a dickhead." It was all I could do not to laugh.
     
  3. apeman33

    apeman33 Well-Known Member

    I participated in a Pick 'Em for a different paper when I was in radio. I had the extra disadvantage of not having been in the area before joining the radio station, so my first two, maybe three, weeks was all guess work. But at a prep rally before the Big Rivalry Game, the Sports Editor found himself having to explain why he picked Big Rival to beat Home Team.

    So when I got to my paper the following season, one thing I knew I was never going to do was a Pick 'Em. To me, it was a no-win situation. Meanwhile, the Sports Editor at Paper 40 Miles West had a Pick 'Em and always picked 40 Miles West High, even in years it was obvious they were going 0-9.
     
    Old Time Hockey likes this.
  4. spikechiquet

    spikechiquet Well-Known Member

    We had a writer that would try to pick the underdogs in all the games. He treated it like a joke. Just didn't care.
     
  5. Fredrick

    Fredrick Well-Known Member

    Great post. I would like to say, hmmm I thought nobody read a newspaper anymore. Sounds to me like newspapers are still relevant, causing a stir.
     
  6. MNgremlin

    MNgremlin Active Member

    This probably sounds petty, but do any of you hold grudges against any of the previous frequent dimwits?

    We had an area kid a few years back who was really talented but his dad was a real piece of work. To this day, he's the biggest dimwit we've dealt with in my 5+ years at the shop. We were glad once the kid's senior basketball season was over because it meant we didn't have to deal with the dad anymore. Anyways, the kid has been performing pretty well in college, almost to the point where I've thought I should run a feature on the kid. It's only D3 football, but it's somewhat popular around here and the kid is on the verge of records. But I really don't know if I want to reopen that can of worms. I'm the only guy around from when we dealt with this issue the last time (shocker), so I'm the only one who really understands the full situation. I haven't been told to pursue the story or not, but I basically have the green light to choose who I want to feature.
     
    maumann likes this.
  7. ChrisLong

    ChrisLong Well-Known Member

    Years ago we had a very prominent athlete -- football, volleyball -- who kept transferring. Sophomore year one school, junior year another. Senior year a third. Second semester of senior year, he went back to the original school. We got word of that and went to find him to make sure. We figured after the final bell, he would eventually work his way down to the PE department. We were having a casual talk with the athletic director as we waited. Asked him what he felt about the kid coming back. "He's a great kid, glad to have him. But his dad is an asshole ... and you can quote me on that."
     
  8. apeman33

    apeman33 Well-Known Member

    Yes. The asshole from this post:
    #6362

    I didn't care about him until he made it known he didn't like me. From that point on, I hated his guts. And even though I left the paper in December, he's the one guy from the whole 22-plus years in that town that if he was on fire, I'd pour gasoline on him.
     
  9. OscarMadison

    OscarMadison Well-Known Member

    @Batman I can't speak specifically to your situation, but I have seen it happen to others and have been on the receiving end of fans fabricating all manner of stories about anyone with a pulse and a byline. Maybe it makes people feel like they can appear to be in the know or inside or something if they dish on reporters, columnists, etc. Swingline has it right. Best to laugh it off. I have to admit to being a little jealous of my evil twin. I'd love to meet her sometime. She sounds interesting.
     
  10. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    Thanks. I was a little worried about it that week, just because it seemed like there was some ugly stuff being said and the game was likely to be (and wound up being) a blowout in favor of County High. I knew the story I was going to have write afterward would not be favorable to City High. Fortunately, a lot of the people I talked to that actually matter saw it for the lunacy that it was. It's even been a little bit of a running joke around town the past couple of weeks, so I think I'm in the clear.
     
    OscarMadison likes this.
  11. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    One of our local swim teams won the state title today. Huge accomplishment. The team they beat has four times as many students and has dominated this meet for decades because they send half the student body to compete and rack up stray points. Local school sends 20-25 good swimmers, compared to 50 or 60 for the bigger school, and has been knocking on the door for a few years before finally breaking through today. The coverage, of course, led our sports section and we had a picture on A1. Good story, good pictures, it's a good day.
    Then I look at my e-mail right before calling it a day and see this from the publisher: "Do we have enough content from the swim team's big win for a 12-16 page sports tab?"
    After the chill finished passing down my spine, I replied, "Oh God, no." It was both a statement of fact and a plea for mercy.
     
    HanSenSE, Tarheel316, SFIND and 4 others like this.
  12. JBHawkEye

    JBHawkEye Active Member

    One of my former publishers wanted us to do a tab, with just two days to complete it because there was no room in the pressroom schedule, for the local Catholic school girls basketball team that was going to state. "I want photos and bios of every player on the team," he said. Why? His daughter was on the team (she maybe played three minutes a game) and "I want a keepsake for her." When I asked if he wanted us to do the same thing for one of our area schools (15 miles away) that was also going, he said, "Just give them a short preview."
     
    I Should Coco, HanSenSE and Batman like this.
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