Saturday, January 21, 2017
Dear Newspaper Editor
Dear Editor, Star Tribune Newspaper:
I am writing to suggest that you begin publishing my mercurial and unusual commentaries as a daily column in your newspaper.
I know that every fiber in your newspaper editor being cries out against doing this. Running a newspaper has long been a game of diminishing returns. Once upon a time the newspaper, solid and powerful, was, at least occasionally, a place for taking an artistic and cultural chance like this. But for decades now the daily newspaper has been like a tire with a slow leak. Everyone riding on that tire has been terrified of any action that might accelerate that doomed leak. That means no rocking. No moving around. No sudden motion or unexpected gestures. Everything should be as still and inoffensive and conservative as possible. Do not hasten that dreadful escape of air because when one is living on borrowed time every tiny second becomes unbelievably precious. So publishing a wildcard columnist with feisty, frank, and unconventional views of the world seems like the worst possible action a newspaper editor can take. One might as well drive a spike into the tire.
But because you are riding on this leaking tire you cannot see what we, by the side of the road, so easily can: All the air is already gone. You all are riding on the rim now. You shredded the tire itself years ago.
So it's time for a little caution to the wind. It is time to throw a wrench into the works. It is time for mad schemes, hail mary passes, and dumping all the fireworks you have left onto the fire. Stand back!
I am that caution to the wind, a habanero pepper, the guy with a surfboard waiting for you to pull your ten fingers out of the holes in your leaking dam. There are fourteen holes in your leaking dam and you have but the ten fingers. Let it go dutchboy! Let me ride! Carry my column in your newspaper. There is nothing left to lose.
Will we make money? Will we achieve acclaim and honor? Will we, dare I say it, save the daily newspaper?
Ha ha ha ha ha ha. No.
Yours in fellowship,