Scribblings from an ink slinger

One newsman's take on life, the world and what-nots


California, USA
December 06
In the newspaper business for more than 20 years. I write, I edit and take photos ... I'm a triple threat.


Smalltownwriter's Links
SEPTEMBER 12, 2010 11:41AM

Shaking things up

Rate: 6 Flag

I've decided to make a change, at least for the purposes of this blog. New title, new direction.

Al-Anon has taught me to stop focusing on the alcoholic in my life and instead focus on myself. This blog has been in direct conflict with that philosophy.

With that, I've changed the name and will be changing the focus.

For those who have been following my tales of being married to an alcoholic, my wife is doing fine for now and so am I. My kids are wonders and bring much joy to our lives. My youngest pats his belly every time he says, "papa." Perhaps that's a hint that I need to lose more weight. I've dropped 30 pounds, but can stand to lose another 30 (or more).

It's election season in the news biz. That means from now until Nov. 2, I will be buried in candidate forums, interviews and endorsements for the two counties my papers cover.

The election seems so far away, but it's actually right around the corner. Once you factor in mail-in ballots, the voting will begin in about three weeks in California.

More people are voting absentee than ever before, putting more pressure on campaigns to get out early. Those last-minute surprises (timed one to two weeks before Election Day) have less of an impact than they did 20 years ago.

My point? Those seeking office need to shake more hands, give more speeches and earn more endorsements earlier in the race. 

That also puts more pressure on the media to run election stories earlier. We're forced to cover an election that most of our readers and viewers don't see as important or urgent, at least not yet. They have been trained to look for the election to "heat up" in the last few weeks, not two months out.

The Nov. 2 election is looking interesting on the local fronts. With the governor's spot up for grabs, Jerry Brown (D) and Meg Whitman (R) have been hitting each other pretty heavy.

Whitman alleges Brown hasn't had a "real job" in 10 years. Brown, spending far less than Whitman, is maintaining his frugality and cost-cutting philosophies while taking a stab at Whitman's time at e-Bay. Many of Whitman's former employees said Whitman, while growing jobs at the company, actually sent many of them overseas. According to the employees, she had a term for it, "Right-shoring" (rather than "off-shoring").

Whitman says while Brown is touting a frugal stance, he and his wife purchased a multi-million dollar mansion in the Oakland area. 

Yes, the eggs are being thrown. Election season is here.

Who am I voting for? I'm still undecided.

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Good morning, STW, glad to see you heading off in this new direction. California politics make me feel somewhat better about those in Illinois, but not by much. We'll see you a Meg Whitman and raise you one show-biz ex-governor awaiting re-trial. Plus two bad candidates for Obama's old Senate seat. All this and trying to imagine Rahm Emmanuel as mayor of Chicago. We have some fun local races too. Egg-throwing? We like cauldrons of boiling oil.
I'm glad to see your new direction. FWIW, if I could fill out an absentee ballot and mail it in, I'd vote for Brown. I look forward to your future posts!
I think your decision has been a long time coming, but the focus shift is going to be a good one. Nice to see things swinging around for you, and congrats on that 30#! You're state is suffering like ours, its so often a case of who will do the worst amount of damage in the alloted time... it's disheartening. It takes the starch out of my vote.
*that should be 'your' - oops!
Sixtycandles: Cauldrons, yes. Local elections are interesting as well. City councils and county supervisorial races are going bananas. I've seen recall efforts, letters asking voters to sweep out all incumbents and challengers with absolutely no experience tossing their hats in the ring.
Cartouche: I've met Meg Whitman and she has the support of many in government I call friends. While I haven't met Brown, plenty of folks in the news business (mostly retired now) are supporting him. So, that leaves me in a pickle! Do I think Whitman has the experience to run a state? No. Do I think Arnold did when he ran? No. It makes for an interesting election.
Gabby Abby: I agree. It has been a long time coming to shift the focus of this blog. I think with a new name and focus, I finally did it! There are those who say California in an unmanageable state. Whoever takes over the governor post will have a tough time with the state senate and assembly. They are like a bunch of kids throwing rocks at each other. I wouldn't want the job.

Bonnie: Yep, undecided. I'm not throwing my support behind either of them until I hear more specifics. Whitman says she has a plan, but it's really more of a loose outline. Brown says he has no plan because he has to get in there and examine things up-close before crafting that plan. He said anyone who claims they know how to fix the problem without getting in office first is fooling themselves. For me, the jury is still out.
Meg Whitman has "a plan?" Sounds reminiscent of Nixon's "secret plan" to end the war in Vietnam (yes, he really did campaign on that).

I hope that with your shift here, we still get to hear about your kids. And of course, we'll all WAY too interested in that 30 pounds.
I will continue to read your blogs with interest. I, too, am a California voter.
Hope all continues to go well for you and for your family.
Wow! I stumbled onto your blog this morning and have spent the entire day reading every word you have written since January 1st. My husband is an alcoholic. I am his enabler. We are in a not so good place, but have been in worse places, and God only knows what place we'll be in tomorrow. I just had to tell you that your words spoke to me today...and will be a part of me forever. I started my blog for pretty much the same reason as you...but just wasn't ready to share my inner world with my outer world I guess. (In my head I write every day!) Your willingness to share your experiences are in some weird way a private little al-anon meeting just between you and your reader. I may actually pursue the meetings again...I did not give them a real chance...I wasn't ready. Anyway...all the best to you...and most importantly...Thank You.
I know you really let it all out in your blogs and it helped so many of us. I started blogging in OS about over eating and then I suddenly saw that I was much more than just a mess of problems. I expanded to all sorts of subjects and enjoyed writing. So keep it up and I will be reading. Brown supporter here.... how can you vote for that woman?!