Don’t worry. I won’t take it personally.
Because you could be kind of right.
It’s just that soon I will no longer work for The Dahlonega Nugget. In fact, if you’re reading this on Thursday, I’m already gone. Drop by and check if you’d like. I’m not there.
“Well, perhaps he’s just stepped out to Dunkin’ Donuts,” you’ll think.
This is a very good assumption. And most of the time you’d be right. But not today.
The first clue will be that my desk is clean.
That hasn’t happened since June 5, 2005. The day before I started the job.
Now I will begin to clutter up a new desk. Because I have been hired by an online hiking magazine called TravelingSasquatch.com.
And the person who hired me is myself.
That’s right. This is where the crazy part comes in.
For the past year or so I’ve been running an Appalachian Trail web-mag named after Bigfoot (we don’t actually report on Bigfoot though, he’s just the mascot). It looks like business is picking up enough for me to, maybe, perhaps, successfully make the leap to self-employment.
Not that it’s a completely safe bet though.
That’s the thing about risk, it tends to be risky.
I suppose I’ve attended too many high school graduations.
Every year I go to the LCHS ceremony to take pictures. And each year I hear speeches about roads less traveled and taking that leap into the unknown.
For the first four years or so I smiled and nodded and clapped and then took some more pictures of those around me smiling and nodding and clapping.
Then a couple of years ago I began to listen. Really listen. And I realized that I wanted to graduate. Not from high school.
But to something new.
So for several months now I’ve been trying to psych myself into making that jump.
Other times I’ve tried to talk myself out of it.
All the while I’ve pondered and prayed and looked for signs.
Asteroids buzzed the earth.
Comets began to rain from the sky.
Popes opted for early retirement.
Then I saw that Little Kid President pep-talk on YouTube. I’m pretty sure he was talking to me.
Even my car radio was getting into the act.
“Might as well jump,” it said to me the other day. “Go ahead and jump!”
You know it’s bad when you start reading too deeply into Van Halen lyrics.
One thing that definitely kept me around (besides health insurance) was my fellow Nugget staffers.
I’ll miss seeing them everyday more than I can sum up in a column. So I won’t. And besides, I’ll still live in Dahlonega which means I’ll bump into all of them several times by the end of the week. Most likely at Walmart.
For you readers, I’ve got to say, I’ve felt like I’ve been in a constant conversation with you for the past eight years. And it’s been the best kind of conversation where I get to do all the talking and everybody seems to listen.
Thanks for listening.
And if you want to keep on talking (and listening) then don’t dismay. I’ll keep writing. And this column will continue to run in the pages of The Nugget.
But my old beats (city, crime, education) will be filled by someone else. And I won’t be at the office anymore. Because I’ve taken Van Halen’s advice.
Though, depending on what time of day it is, I still might actually be at Dunkin’ Donuts.