The very cool thing about this new career is the absolute autonomy over what appears on the Just Wright Citrus website and Facebook page. I alone make those calls each day and Sunday through Thursday nights, as I’m doing at the moment, when I put the blog together.
Never in my 40 years of writing, though, have I done it every single work day, five days a week, as I do now. And, that can be a little challenging and a ton of fun at the same time.
(If it feels like an excuse is coming, you’re, um, in the ballpark.)
OK, here’s the deal. I had a blog in my head all weekend for Monday, right up until just before the sun went down. Then ANOTHER idea, better than the other one, came to mind, but I realized I didn’t have what I needed for it. Then I realized the first idea actually worked better after the second idea was finished.
And because of Daylight Saving Time, which added an hour of sunshine on, let’s face it, a pretty impressive day considering the -14 wind chill Sunday morning, when I realized both my ideas were sunk, it was nearly 7:30 p.m. and I had nothing.
Not that this ever happened in MY career, and I am SURE this never happened to you, but it’s the same feeling as walking (or Zooming) into that Monday morning meeting totally unprepared. So what do you do? Hiding never works. I’ve tried.
You improvise! That always worked for me, um, hypothetically.
It worked because a bunch of people were talking about story ideas and something would click in me and others. That’s how cool stuff ends up in the paper.
I admit to, at times, missing a newsroom environment. In the newsroom, other reporters would have talked me out of those two ideas long before my Sunday night deadline.
By now, you may be thinking, “Is there a point to all this? Or is he just rambling because he’s caught without a topic on Sunday night?”
Heh heh heh. Oh ye of little faith.
Of course there’s a point: Be prepared! Isn’t that obvious?
I’m not prepared, and you’re stuck with the consequences on a Monday morning.
Just like if our elected leaders aren’t PREPARED for the growth we’re being inundated with at the moment, we will all suffer the consequences. Not just Monday morning. Most mornings.
See what I did there? I was able to take an actual, totally unprofessional move on my part, and use it to illustrate a reminder that there is a LOT going right now and coming down the road (pun intended).
You’ll have to decide whether that comparison works or not. Considering I came up with it five minutes ago, I’m pretty happy with it and will probably use it again.
I’ll attempt to salvage this by saying: I’m not shy about my push for competitive local elections this year. We have MUCH to discuss, from the parkway to the turnpike (two entirely different roads with entirely different stories) and other issues we’ve seen arise in the last year or two.
I’m talking about it now so when ballot qualifying rolls around in June, we’re not bemoaning the lack of great candidates. Don’t get me wrong, we already have candidates who bring substance to the table. We could use one or two more. We can’t have too much conversation about these issues prior to the election.
Well, scrolling back to where I began an hour ago, I think I did OK here considering I started literally with nothing.
I swear it will not happen again. This week.
As for the Sunday evening photo of Big Lake Henderson? It’s a place of serenity, a reminder that as we face another week of challenges, beauty awaits us if we only know to look.
That, and I had nothing else.
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Mike Wright has written about Citrus County government and politics for 36 years.