Tag Archives: journalism

My short-lived trip back to the newsroom

Betting on Gannett didn’t pay off this time

About a month into the job at The Tennessean, working on two laptops and a desktop computer.

Getting oriented back into a newsroom included working with two laptops and a desktop computer, relying on my old systems while I learned the new ones.

Well I gave it a shot. I placed the bet, rolled the dice and crapped out. I know “crapped out” isn’t the correct term (I’m looking at you, Mary Lawrence) but I spent an inordinate amount of time looking for the right gambling analogy and, well, crapped out.

Just a few days past my one-year anniversary at The Tennessean in Nashville, I joined the ranks of the unemployed. (It also happened just four days after my Continue reading


We just clicked *

I went to a journalism conference in Gainesville, Fla., over the weekend. I flew out of Columbia with my colleague, Lynda, whom I don’t see as often as I used to (she got a big promotion.)

We were seated together out of Columbia and wanted to sit together on the next leg of the flight, too, but we had seats in different rows. But Lynda was in the seat right behind me, so we thought that was good enough. The person I sat next to was unknown to me and we didn’t even say hello to each other. I was ok with that because I didn’t really want to talk to a stranger. Turns out, neither did she.

Continue reading

9,999 steps around the Forbidden City

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

BEIJING — We went to Forbidden City today. Our legs are sore from yesterday’s hike up the Great Wall. The story is that the city has 999 buildings, with 9,999 rooms. In Chinese tradition the number nine represents longevity. It seems to have worked for the Forbidden City, which was started in 1407, finished in 1420. The place is massive, the buildings are huge. Apparently 30,000 people once lived there and it’s easy to imagine that.

We all felt the need for lunch after Forbidden City. We went in search of pizza for lunch but we weren’t successful. One of the students said he can’t believe it but he’s already sick of Chinese food. Instead we had more fried rice (which isn’t really fried here) kung pao chicken, kung pao shrimp and noodles in eggplant sauce. Pizza would be really nice.

I left the students after lunch because I was tired and they wanted to go to the silk market. That, of course, meant even more walking. By this time it was about 3pm and I was ready to quit. For those of you my age, never vacation with people half your age. They cover twice as much ground in half as much time. I vaguely remember those days.

I’m way out of my comfort zone here. Even Beijing, the most westernized city, is not very western. I was a little worried about getting back to the hotel on my own. Navigating the subway went well — even with two transfers — but I didn’t pay enough attention on the walk to the subway station from the hotel. Luckily the hotel room key has the name and address on it and someone helped me out. (At this point anyone who went on this trip before is laughing because the subway stop is only a hop, skip and a jump from the hotel. Embarrassing.)

I really just want to get into a newsroom, back to something I know. But I shouldn’t be in a hurry because I’ll be there for a week. This could be a loooooooong trip, but I’m still very grateful to be here. The experience — even the third time in China — is still very cool, even if I only do half as much as the students.

We have one more day on our own then we start reporting on Friday.