“For Bill Whose Books Adorn Library”


Man went forty years

thinking I just up and quit.

Gave editor two weeks!*

 

  • (When I left The Sanford Herald’s employ it was neither dramatic nor histrionic no shared.  I had told the then-editor I would return following my two-week vacation and he then could give me an answer to my request – demand, actually – for a pay raise.  I was, officially, sports editor. I also covered the county’s newest incorporate – almost typed incompetent! – city, Lake Mary, all of it.  I also took both sports and news photographs, I also served on the paper’s first – and only – award-winning investigative journalism team.  I also wrote most of the front-page and local and county inside-pages news headlines.  Thankfully no one handed me a bucket and squeege.  I had toiled triumphantly in a dingy side-shed to the now long-torn down SunTrust Bank on First Street and the rennovated side-portion of the old Opera House on Magnolia, overlooking what is now Magnolia Square and Cindy’s Dance Studio – a great improvement. And I also worked at the paper’s last-but really next-to-last location on U. S. 17-92 (French Avenue) North of First Street down by Lake Monroe.  I came one-day late – pre-approved by telephone call from Lookout Mountain, Tennessee, and strolled into the newsroom at 9 a.m., some three to four hours past my usual time when as a high schooler I used to “pull” the wires and learned to read the dots punched in the AP and UPI wires and read hot lead type galleys upside down and backwards and read lips and generally helled about town and county and had a ball.  But I was serious. I quirked my eyebrow (left) at Editor Tom and tilted my head.  He stood up.  I said, aloud so all could hear: “let’s go to your office, Tom,” and led him out the newsroom to the printshop and out the side door to the parking lot, his “office.”  I asked: “Do I get my raise?”  He stammered, scuffed his leather-shoed toe and shook his head parallel to Earth.  I caught his eye finally by saying nothing.  “Well. That’s That,” I said, and walked over to my VW Blue Bug and opened the driver’s door, got in and started the engine, reversed and pulled out of the lot onto ’92 and went back to college the next day. Sad. But smiling.)

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