So I’m one of the Opinion Shapers for our West County Journal, and the newly minted team for the coming twelve-month period met Tuesday night. We got our new publication schedule for the year, and had our mug shots taken.
We met our new editors (yes, there’ve been shake-ups at this paper, too, since last year.) Ten out of the twelve Opinion Shapers were veterans; some of us have done this for five or six years, one guy’s been at it for fifteen!
We went around the table introducing ourselves. One of the newbies remarked that she was really impressed to be a part of this group of writers. I felt compelled to relate an anecdote I read many years ago, when I had recently moved away from San Francisco.
A quirky, intellectual professor of English at San Francisco State, Hayakawa was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1976. After about a year in Washington, he was quoted as saying, “When I first came here I was in awe of the 99 peers I sat among in this august body. Now I’m embarrassed to be one of them.”
Okay, I couldn’t find the exact quote, but that was definitely the message. So I told Miss Newbie not to be overly impressed by us, and that a year from now she may feel very differently about her cohorts.
The editors looked at each other nervously. Maybe they were wondering whether there will be a next year…