My weird schedule has only allowed me to attend the Springfield blogger events. I made it a point to attend the send off for Tony Messenger of the News Leader. I had fun in the short time I was there (I had to be at work, as usual). It is always fun to talk with the people in the industry who cover the news and deal with the craziness of the business.
Tony was forthcoming about the behind the page world of the News Leader. It is always interesting to learn you don't work at the only crazy place in the business.
I found out that Tony still has the Pez Dispenser I sent him. I also found out I was apparently not the target of the editorials on anonymous blogging. After all, he was glad to meet me. I was a decent person and shook hands with (unlike some of the riff-raff in our community).
I realize not everyone in the area likes Tony (I think we can think of one person), but I believe the editorial page has been better under his direction. Before Tony it was only the Ozarkers who were against anyone having any kind of fun (sex in particular).
Also for those who complain about the News Leader, go to the Library Center and look at the old Springfield Daily News and the old News Leaders from the 1950s. The Daily News front page was mainly wire stories of the most lurid nature. I found one which featured a story about a 19 year old boy who dug up the body of a nine year old girl who had died of cancer for sexual purposes. What did this have to do with folks in Springfield? The News Leaders seemed to be filled with opinon pieces "longing for the good old days when Ma made my sister panties out of Pa's chew tobacky pouches."
I realize Tony stepped on some toes. Some will take credit for him leaving. Really sad that some would have such blind hatred and lack of respect for someone more talented than them, but that is what we in the business have to put up with. Good luck, Tony. Don't eat too much of that Pez.
*Note: No tennis balls were thrown at Tony or anyone else during this blogger get-together.