Monday, March 13, 2000

400 Roses By Any Other Name

This is the 400th issue of the Cheapo newsletter, which is about 150 more than I thought I'd be involved with. When I was hired to create and edit the newsletter in 1992, my goal (which seemed pretty insurmountable at the time) was to do the weekly assignment for five years. I figured after that time the publication would be well established and an important enough part of the company that I could step aside and let someone else with a fresh voice and perspective takeover.

When we flew by that five year anniversary a few years ago I indeed took a step back and thought about whether or not to follow through with my original plan and resign. The newsletter has been a lot of work to do. It takes up much of my weekends. I've only had one real vacation in eight years. But in the end my decision came down to the assignment still remains quite enjoyable to do, and it remains a challenge to try and be an important part of making this company work a little better.

Back in 1992 one of the reasons I was interested in this job was I had a desire to be a writer and being frustrated by not feeling I was getting anywhere close to that. With my new job as the editor of this publication came a valuable lesson: to be a writer all one needs to do is write. (To be a good writer, or an effective writer is a whole other story of course.) And with the challenge of this publication came a similar lesson. Recently I reread the early issues of the newsletter and it was refreshing and enlightening because I was surprised at how many contributors we used to have company-wide. The newsletter is at its best when we hear from different voices. But with a dogged determination I have plowed through the weeks when I arrive at the warehouse only to find a half a page worth of material. To keep this publication afloat because I think it can be a valuable employee resource over time means consistently putting something out every week.

The reward of the work is sometimes unexpected. Last Sunday at our anniversary/ holiday celebration, my self proclaimed "arch nemesis" came over and told me she reads (and presumably enjoys) my article every week. Her words really meant a great deal to me more than I can even begin to express (it was the second year in a row she made quite the impression on me). And as always I enjoyed catching up with Al (who came up with my favorite quote of the afternoon: "If I wanted to watch millionaires play sports, I'd watch polo."), and with Jennifer and LeAnn (who made me think there might be a correlation between hanging out at Brookdale as a youth and the enlightenment that comes with being able to see the brilliance of Buffy). It was fun too chatting with Pat and Pete, and playing three cutthroat games of pool with a thankfully evenly matched in skill Mary. All and all it was a reminder of how I still greatly enjoy being a part of this company.

As the changes of C2K play themselves out over time hopefully you will find the information on these pages useful. Hopefully too, we can get more and more of you contributing to the newsletter. This is your newsletter, and your opinions and viewpoints aren't only welcome, they are necessary. We hope to continue to improve this publication and are open to any and all feedback on how we can do that.

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