Write Again … I did it her way
Published 1:00 am Tuesday, August 23, 2011
The column was written, ready to be turned in. I had titled it “With a Grateful Heart.”
The first paragraph began with “And now, the end is near, and as I face the final curtain.”
I went on to write: “The beginning lyrics of Paul Anka’s ‘I Did it My Way’ are powerful and quite dramatic. Frank (Old Blue Eyes) really made it his song.”
Then I acknowledged that, although such was a bit melodramatic, it was how I felt in writing my final column.
The final column? Yep. I wrote, “Ending this little writing enterprise is not the stuff of serious significance (just the right touch of modesty). Not to others. Only to me.
“Yes, I will miss doing this. Truly. After a twenty years absence from the pages of any newspaper I was really pleased to try my hand at it again.” (A little pity me here).
Most sincerely I wrote, “I will always be grateful to Ray for inviting me onto the pages of our paper. He is a good man, doing a difficult job.” (That part is so true).
This was followed by me thanking those who read the column, those who commented to me about it, those who wrote notes to me and those bold enough to call in to “Sound Off.” To all of them, I expressed my genuine gratitude.
My farewell continued, “My leave taking — an amicable separation — has to do with the change in placement (location — page 5A, top of the page, all the way across) and the diminished print size.” They downsized me and moved me to the editorial page.
I wrote, “Management felt a change was in order. I didn’t. Just a difference of opinion. No acrimony. No hard feelings. Just a bit (OK, maybe more than a ‘bit’ on my part) of disappointment.”
And then, with a literary flourish (is that puffery, or what?), I wrote, “I suspect the rivers will still flow to the seas.”
Picking back up with the aforementioned song, “I’ve lived, I’ve laughed and cried, but let me say, not in a shy way. Oh, no. Oh no not me … I did it my way.”
I then signed off with a single word: “Shalom.”
And that was it. Done.
I read it aloud to my First Wife & Best Friend.
She said, “That’s very good. But you’re not going to turn that in.”
“No. I know you’re upset. Disappointed.”
“You’re right. I am. And … .”
“Get over it.”
“Just get over it?”
She had the last word.
Epilogue: And lo, it came to pass, the decision to return “Write Again” to its original resting place was made before that which you have just read was submitted. This made he who writes it happy. (But why waste an already-written column?) And yes … the rivers still flow to the seas.