Friday, March 4, 2011

Follow Friday Fun - Chin Musik

In the fall of 1992, I was a freshman at The College of Saint Rose. [stop that math] I was convinced I was going to become a world famous journalist whose work would be ground-breaking and world-changing. I had a spot all picked out for my Pulitzer.

I wrestled my shyness to the ground and got up the nerve to approach the editor of the student paper and ask about writing an article. I was encourage by the words of my high school journalism teacher - and the fact that the editor played baseball with a guy I knew from work, who was like my big brother and looked out for me. [and yes, I dropped his name....]

The editor gave me a couple of soft-news stories. Then he asked me to write a story about a female student who was mugged on her way to her car after a night class. I interviewed security, other students, faculty and the police. The one interview I could not get? The student. Even after some...creative methods of getting her home phone number from the registrar, I couldn't get a hold of her for a comment.

My story didn't run.

I was pissed. It was a good story (I thought). It gave the facts on what happened, it told what the college was doing to prevent future incidents and it gave the students' perspective.

But I learned a few things. I learned that, in life, you have to be willing to go after what you want - and not stop until you get it. I learned that being shy is not helpful in any business. I learned that criticism is valuable, especially when it's intelligent and constructive. I learned that I'm not always right, and getting upset won't help my argument. I learned that, no matter what I wanted, there were certain things I couldn't wouldn't do to get a story.

Amazing. Tens of thousands of dollars were spent for my education - and the most valuable lesson came for free, from someone who wasn't even a professor. [sorry, dad]

Through the magic of twitter, a few months back I found that editor. He's a writer, and a blogger - and a Yankee fan. He's also a cool, funny guy with uncommon style. He expresses his views in a smart, relatable way that's fun to read. You might even learn something; I have.

He still has a lot to say, and he's still worth a listen. His changing the face of his blog, too - so now is a great time to "find" him. Check out his blog, follow him on twitter, like him on facebook - and tell him I sent you.

1 comment:

  1. And following!

    Funny how those big lessons are often free...