Hi, Snakes fans--
I wasn't sure what to call this. The L-E bosses told me a while back to write "real" headlines rather than the clever, creative ones I've tried to write for the past few years. Since I generally follow the rules, I've done as I was told. This time was hard, though...
This isn't actually a Snakes update, but a personal one. I wanted to give you this news with you as we share a connection, though I don't actually know many of you. We share a love of hockey. Ya'all love the Snakes and I love bringing you every bit of info I can about the guys and the team.
Time to rip the bandaid off and get to the point:
I'm retiring from the Ledger-Enquirer at the end of this hockey season. The 10 seasons the Snakes and I have spent together represent only a portion of my time with the newspaper. I'll have been there not quite 37 years when I put away the notebook.
A moment of disclosure: I can't actually retire from this job because it's not a full-time job!! Retirement sounds so much classier than quit, don't you think? I'm just a correspondent, stringer or whatever else you want to call me. (Don't worry...have been called a couple of choice things over the years...lol)
Way back when, I was given the opportunity to combine my love for sports and writing by covering games. I saw it all in the early days: football, basketball, baseball and whatever else was thrown my way. How many people get paid to enjoy a hobby?
My 10 years with the Snakes have been like living in a writer's fantasy world for so many reasons. I've enjoyed full access to the players, complete support from both newspaper and team management and pretty much had free reign to cover this team as I saw best. What's not to like?
There are so many people to thank, and I'll do that later, but with the season rapidly coming to a close, the ending will be sudden, either way. Raising the Cup and playoff elimination tend to knock you upside the head. It's kind of strange preparing for my exit and not knowing exactly when it will be!
Jerome has known about my plans since last summer. My family and a few close friends knew earlier this season. I've recently told colleagues at the newspaper, so I thought it was time to tell the most important people...my readers.
Thanks for your compliments, suggestions, questions and even criticisms as I've used each and every one to do my job a little better. You'll still see me at the Snake Pit, sitting in section 102 with my family, dressed in jeans and a sweatshirt and eating a hot dog. :) What you won't see is the notebook, laptop and me looking at my watch worrying about rapidly approaching deadlines.
This announcement isn't earth-shattering. Not life-and-death. Not a big deal in the grand scheme of things and life as we know it. But I still wanted ya'all to know. I'm ready for less structure and more freedom. Covering the Snakes, the way I do it, is a year-round job. It starts in late April when I'm sitting on the beach with my sisters, thinking about the theme for the next year's preview section...haha. Time to step back and take a breath.
We still have a few weeks together, and I plan to really enjoy them! See ya'all this weekend!