My last day at the Star Tribune was Nov. 4. I’d been working remotely from north Georgia for the past month, and was back in Minneapolis last week to pick up a car and drop off my laptop.
My family left Minneapolis earlier this fall mostly for personal reasons. My wife and I had wanted to move to the Southeast for years, to be closer to my immediate and extended family, and to raise our three little kids (ages 5, 3 and 6 months) in a place where we can go outside in January. COVID-19 both prodded us (the prospect of a six-month winter, in the middle of a pandemic, was brutal) and opened the door (my wife figured she could work remotely from exurban Chattanooga just as well as she could work remotely from south Minneapolis, and her bosses in the Twin Cities thankfully agreed). So we sold our house just south of 38th Street, bought a house in Georgia 20 minutes from downtown Chattanooga, and moved all our stuff, all in about one month.
And yet, we would not have left Minneapolis if I had insisted on staying at the Star Tribune. Why didn’t I? It’s a healthy newspaper and pays as well as any publication outside New York, D.C. or Los Angeles. Why give that up? I’ve worked at daily newspapers non-stop since I graduated from college in 2006, I saw the power of alternative media during the riots in Minneapolis this summer, and, thanks to my little soccer podcast, I see the potential there is in going directly to the consumer with your content. So I’m giving Scuffed News a go, and my lovely wife is giving me eight months to build it into something that earns a living. If it’s not starting to do that by July 4, I’ll have to go hat-in-hand to a local newspaper or television station, or find some other way to make money. The low cost of living in north Georgia gives us some leeway.
I do want to mention how lucky I feel to have gotten eight good years at the Star Tribune, in a great (and underrated) American city like Minneapolis. Despite its flaws, and like any person or institution it is flawed, the Strib was a wonderful place for me to work on the craft of journalism. Executive editor Rene Sanchez is passionate about that craft, and my direct editors over the years — Thom Kupper, James Shiffer and Evan Ramstad — were the same. I was free to work on meaningful projects under their thoughtful guidance. That’s not a given in the news business, so I’m grateful for that.
Anyway, enough yammering. Here are today’s links:
George H.W. Bush’s concession speech in 1992 — YouTube
In Georgia, Stacey Abrams’ profile grows with apparent Biden win — NYT
TV preacher Kenneth Copeland “laughs” at media calling election — Twitter
Pfizer says vaccine “more than 90% effective” in trial — NYT
Market responds predictably to vaccine news — Bloomberg
Production ramps up on antibodies that treated Trump — Fierce Pharma
More on Regeneron, whose work is as important as a vaccine — NPR
Chinese state news sees the U.S. as “degrading” — Global Times
- Black State Fair, Minneapolis — Scuffed News
- Trump voters in rural Minnesota — Scuffed News
- Stone Mountain confederate monument, Georgia — Scuffed News
“In truth there are only two kinds of people; those who accept dogmas and know it, and those who accept dogmas and don't know it.” - G.K. Chesterton, “Fancies Versus Fads,” 1923
About this email and me: I send this email most mornings to force myself to stay informed and to keep in touch. It’s typically ~8 links, a quote, and an update on what I’m working on. You are one of about 500 people on the list and I may have added you unilaterally because I thought you might enjoy it. Write me back! I want to correspond. And please share the email widely. I was a newspaper reporter for 14 years who worked at the Cedar Rapids Gazette, Des Moines Register and Minneapolis Star Tribune. Find my new venture, Scuffed News, on YouTube (subscription is free and appreciated) and Twitter. Email me at email@example.com
Great report. I was wondering what motivated the move, and did not know you were in the Chattanooga area!