I have lots of bees in my bonnet lately
Posted 5/01/18 (Tue)
Whines & Roses
By Cecile Wehrman
I haven’t written a column in a while. You know that old saying that if you can’t say anything nice you shouldn’t say anything at all? Some days it seems like everyone else is breaking that rule, so I may as well break it, too.
This week I have the time and the inclination to get a few things off my chest. And I guess I am past the point of worrying who might be offended. In fact, if you take offense, or have any suggestions for solving any of these whines, by all means, write a letter to the editor. I’ll be happy to publish it.
It feels these days like everything is just a little mean-spirited. Have you noticed it in your life or is it just my line of work that brings it out in people? From the Washington Correspondent’s roast Saturday, to the Divide County High School prom, everywhere, it seemed last weekend, that people weren’t happy.
Whether they were grousing over the extremely political (though funny in a cringe-inducing fashion) commentary of comedian Michelle Wolf in Washington, or jockeying for the best photographic position of children dressed in prom finery in Crosby, it seems everyone is a little less civil these days, a little more determined to get what they think they’ve got coming to them.
As we’ve gone through the subscription renewal process in Tioga, I am so thankful for the folks who have decided to stick with us another year, but I am also a little frustrated by the few who have seen fit to come to our office in Tioga with nothing but complaints to offer my employees.
The two young women holding down the fort in our Tioga office are working for a wage -- not in charge of the editorial stance of the paper or the fact we no longer carry office supplies or even that we’re only open four days a week.
Any complaints should be directed to me -- 965-6088.
It’s hard enough finding people willing to take some heat working for the newspaper, let alone reassure them when they’re personally attacked.
One day, a woman asked where each of the young ladies was from, adding one was “okay” since she was originally from Ray, but the other -- my daughter Cathleen -- was not, since she “isn’t from here.” Yeah. it pokes the mama bear in me because it’s my kid, but this isn’t even the worst episode along these lines -- just one that is printable.
We’re going to be advertising the reporting position in Tioga again so if you know of anyone local interested in a job with up to 40 hours a week, plus a health insurance benefit, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’d love to find a trainable local person interested in the job. In the meantime, I am thankful for Cathleen’s willingness to step out of her comfort zone to approach a lot of people she doesn’t know, and I am appreciative of those who return her requests for an interview. Lots of people, for whatever reason, choose not to.
I saw a complaint this weekend -- and see pleas on social media frequently -- from people wondering about this or that event, times events start, etc. More often than not, someone will answer “it’s in the paper this week.” To which the person looking for the information will reply, “I don’t get the paper.”
And that’s too bad, because the community newspaper has been the local Bible for decades, reporting not just who died or got arrested, but what projects are in the hopper, what the city governments are up to, the subjects students are working on, what’s playing at the movies, and which businesses are offering specials.
If you’re reading this, you already know how important the newspaper is and I am preaching to the choir. Maybe you can help me reach converts -- with civility, of course.