column day

20 years of progress

By: Sarah

In the interest of full disclosure, I’m going to say it. This is my first real column. My high school column “The Westside” didn’t count, nor did my sporadic entries in Harding University’s weekly newspaper The Bison. This feels real. I’m pretty sure this is even real newsprint.

I’d like to say I hijacked this space, because that would make for a great lead. But as you can see, it isn’t the lead. Charlotte’s on vacation, and I was extended the invitation to write a column.

How do I introduce myself in this new publication? I’m sure Dave’s picture is smiling benevolently above me. My picture is right here, too, but I haven’t had it taken yet so I don’t know how ridiculous I look in that collared shirt.

I could make up a clever rhyme about myself, although the trick to being clever is to avoid having readers ask for their money back. My dear old dad suggested I write that I’m a nice gal and a good cook. Also, he remarked with a smirk, I should inform my readers that I have a quirky sense of humor. Thanks, pops.

Let’s get the worst out of the way. I’m the youngest of three and the only daughter. So I’m a princess, and not just because my name is Hebrew for princess. I’m also one tough cookie. I guess that wasn’t the worst. The worst part to reveal is I’m 26 years old and single. I can hear my cousin Kathy snickering somewhere in the background. And, yes, I’m that girl who lived in China for a while. Ask me about it sometime, if you’ve got an hour or 12 to spare.

I think the most pertinent point is that I like to write. I’ve been doing it for a while. Allow me to share with you my very first writing sample. I wrote it in first grade:

"I said to the king, ‘Do you like me?’ I said. The king said, ‘No, for you have never said the plage of alegents. For you are unfair to our slaves. Good-bye.’"

That story would probably make sense to my 5-year-old nephew, but it’s quite cryptic to me. I’m fairly certain that I used (or tried to use) the phrase "pledge of allegiance" because those were the most complicated words I knew at the time. It might have been a better story if I’d been writing about a plague of allergens.

My next writing sample is from a little later in my first-grade career:

"The thing I want is a lambergene that is pink and red hot. I want a frigerader of my own. I want a six weele car, a Toyota."

It was my materialistic phase. Pink Lamborghinis, Japanese imports and kitchen appliances consumed my thoughts, or at least the pages of my first-grade diary. I might have confused a diary with a letter to the car factory Santa Claus.

Clearly, I’ve come a long way in the last 20 years. I hope.

BERRY–Stay, come here for the fourth
By: Dave
(I edited this, taking out the parts that don’t pertain to me – SW)
* * * * *

I mentioned here last week the pending departures of Justin and Linda from the news staff. Justin finished up his duties Friday and Linda continues to serve you through the end of the month.

In the meantime, meet their successor, Sarah, below. Sarah, who has been with us for a while in another department, will work full time. Both Linda and Justin have been working part time. We will fill in with freelance help, some of which we hope to be from Justin and Linda.

I’m confident that readers and news sources will find Sarah to be bright, witty, fair, accurate, well educated and well traveled. Now, if only we can fill the role she vacates in our business department.

* * * * *

That’s it for me this week. Before Charlotte left on vacation, she cautioned me to be short here, because Sarah’s column would be longer than what Charlotte normally writes. I at first said that’s a bad way for her to get started, treading on my word count, but on second thought, anything that makes my job easier will make her all the more welcome.

After all, I have a stock, honest answer to the question, "Are you staying busy?"

"Yes, busy for a lazy man."


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