Column: Meet the new editor of the Reporter

With our friend Sheila visiting from England a few years back, Mary and I decided one summer evening to take her to dinner. We were living then just a block from the North Ferry dock in Greenport, and so walked onboard and stood outside for the crossing. As the ferry eased away, lights in town were just winking on behind us. The sun was almost set, lighting up the sky and catching the peaks of the soft harbor swells. Approaching the Island, the last of the light was lingering in the tops of trees on the bluffs.

We walked up a hill following a path bordered by flowering hedges so lush with summer they almost met overhead, and ate outside at a restaurant in the Heights. After dinner, coming down the hill to the ferry, the moon was rising over the harbor spread out before us, and Sheila, just a little breathlessly, said, “Can you imagine living here?”

Yes, we could.

We’d been here before. Mary had spent time vacationing on the Island long before we moved out east, and I’d worked at the Reporter for about a month exactly 10 years ago. Times Review was starting a new paper then, the North Shore Sun, and I was part of the team that gave birth to our now dear, departed baby. About a month before the Sun’s inaugural issue, I came over to fill in at the Reporter, which was suddenly short staffed. Here I met Peter Boody and Archer Brown and Joanne Sherman, people who are the living proof of welcoming hospitality.

I got hooked on the romance of ferry crossings – which has not faded and I hope never will — those short intermissions in our days, being carried from one shore to another. Those who don’t live or work here often just get a vague sense of something deeper in the  mundane chore of leaving and returning, but the ferries are bright markers of those simple events. I don’t know about you, but sometimes on those crossings it’s impossible not to be reflective of things more important than simply travelling from one map point to another.

The poet Anthony Cronin captures the idea in “Living On An Island.” “What happens here often seems unreal./But what happens over there does not really matter.”

Working here 10 years ago for that short period I got a sense of the community’s unity by covering a fire that destroyed a family’s home and practically all their possessions. It struck me that for most of the Islanders it wasn’t just a story in a newspaper, but a tragedy, and many were pitching in to help.

Cronin again: “People here seem slightly daft./ But people over there seem deficient in understanding.”

When the opportunity came to be editor of the Reporter, there was no question I’d take it. But there was also no question that we’d move here. It was because, as our friend Sheila had put it, we’d already imagined it. The response from everyone we know and has an idea about Shelter Island were happily unanimous and not a little envious. It seems they’ve also imagined living in a separate and beautiful place only reached by a trip across salt water.

I grew up in a small town. If that sounds Mellencamp-ish, it is. John grew up in Seymour, Indiana, a bit north and east from my hometown, Mt. Carmel, Illinois, a little river town on the Wabash. That’s where our similarities end. I have never called myself “Cougar.”

I don’t have illusions about small towns, not just by growing up in one, but having the perspective of being an adult living in a couple of Irish villages, and living in cities, including St. Louis, Chicago, New York and Dublin.

One of the first people I met here a few weeks ago asked if I had a thick skin. “You’re going to need it,” he said. Well, it’s not rhino-class, but it’s thick enough, I suppose, for someone who works for a newspaper and also someone who lives in a small town.

Only working for the paper for a couple of weeks, I had someone write privately that I should take a hike, and on our letters page an editorial of mine was called malicious, smug and  vindictive – and that was the nice part. I enjoyed the letter writer’s rhetorical skill, especially his suspicion that calling out my politics would bounce off pre-thickened skin, but attacking my prose style would cut deeply. (I welcome more exchanges, Mr. Olsen. Honest.)

I’ll make mistakes, rest assured. But they’ll be honest ones. And I know Island life won’t be all summer evenings of moonlight and flowering hedges.

But the warm welcome we’ve received has been genuine. I was overwhelmed with the help and consideration given to me on  the long day into night I spent with the veterans and their families on the Honor Flight to Washington. And Mary and I were buzzing about people joyously welcoming us at the library’s “Turkey Plunge” on Saturday.

It has all been a bit unreal, to steal Cronin’s line, arriving accompanied by Hurricane Sandy and witnessing Islanders’ responses to the emergency and their ongoing outreach to those hurt by the storm.

Which leads me to give the poet the last word: “On the night sea/and above the clouds/You realize that/Here or there/Though everything after all is finite/Nothing after all is final.”

104 Comment

  • Particularly interesting cheers, It is my view your trusty visitors may well want considerably more items of this naturel continue the excellent effort.

  • Truly no matter if someone doesn’t be aware of then its up to other visitors that they will assist, so here it happens.

  • I do not actually treatment how or when i get the Letters in the Mail. Every time it arrives, it feels like a letter should be. It’s suddenly there in my mail box one day. A great, tangible surprise. I’m for you doing whatever you want when you send it. Mix it up for your persons who help get it sent out. Include crumbs from your lunch. Coffee stains. Whatever. Keep the tedious naturel of getting letters out to a minimum by doing whatever you feel like that day. The arrival on the letter and the words in the author inside are what matters. Personally, what I like finest about The Rumpus is that I never ever know what I’ll study that day. Or if there isn’t really one which day, maybe it’s because Stephen couldn’t discover anything to say or there was far too much likely on.

  • Really enjoyed this article post.Much thanks again. Great.

  • It would have been nice if I’d found this article earlier, thanks very much for sharing it. The way you have composed this site is both articulate and informative at the same time. That’s quite an accomplishment, considering the subject matter written about. Thanks, I have learned something new here, which I like to try and achieve everyday. Thank you once again for taking the time to post this. I have placed a link to this page from my Google+ page, I hope that’s alright?

  • Hiya very cool site!! Guy .. Excellent .. Wonderful .. I’ll bookmark your site and take the feeds additionally? I’m satisfied to search out so many useful info right here in the post, we’d like develop more strategies in this regard, thanks for sharing. . . . . .

  • What’s up everyone, it’s my first pay a quick visit at this web site, and paragraph is truly fruitful for me, keep up posting these types of articles or reviews.

  • They have in fact saved my life. It actually was a amusement account it. Awesome write-up, I am regular visitor of this internet site, maintain up the very good operate, and I will be described as a regular visitor for a really extended time.

  • This site definitely has all the information I needed about this subject and didn’t know who to ask.

  • I simply had to thank you so much again. I do not know the things I could possibly have tried in the absence of the type of solutions revealed by you about my subject matter. It was a distressing difficulty in my position, but being able to view your professional avenue you solved it forced me to leap over happiness. Extremely happy for this service and hope you recognize what an amazing job that you’re undertaking training many people thru your web site. I’m certain you have never got to know any of us.

  • Fantastic blog! Do you have any tips for aspiring writers? I’m planning to start my own site soon but I’m a little lost on everything. Would you advise starting with a free platform like WordPress or go for a paid option? There are so many choices out there that I’m totally confused .. Any recommendations? Kudos!

  • Thank you for all your valuable effort on this site. Ellie enjoys going through investigation and it’s really simple to grasp why. All of us hear all concerning the powerful mode you create very important suggestions through your blog and in addition encourage participation from people about this matter while our own princess is undoubtedly starting to learn a whole lot. Enjoy the remaining portion of the new year. You are always doing a superb job.

  • You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this matter to be actually something that I think I would never understand. It seems too complicated and extremely broad for me. I’m looking forward for your next post, I will try to get the hang of it!

  • Magnificent goods from you, man. I have understand your stuff previous to and you are just too wonderful. I really like what you’ve acquired here, certainly like what you are saying and the way in which you say it. You make it entertaining and you still take care of to keep it smart. I can not wait to read far more from you. This is actually a terrific web site.

  • That is a very good tip particularly to those fresh to the blogosphere. Short but very accurate information… Many thanks for sharing this one. A must read post!

  • Wait a minute! I have something important that you might like …My friends and I (we’re from Florida) have been watching this blog for a while and we really like it so we decided to share something with you that’s been working for us in blogging: It shows how anyone living literally anywhere in the world can go from zero to $10,000 a month in the shortest time possible. I’ve been doing it for the last couple days and yesterday I said I was making $70/day. This morning I woke up with $71.36 already in my account!! I can’t wait to see where I end up today, everyone is so excited about Anthony’s awesome system. The biggest plus? All this is free income! Definitely check it out, spend just 30 seconds watching the free video about this amazing guy:

  • Hi my friend! I wish to say that this article is awesome, nice written and include approximately all important infos. I’d like to see more posts like this.

  • Hi to every body, it’s my first pay a quick visit of this webpage; this web site includes awesome and really good material designed for readers.

  • I agree with your thought.Thank you for your sharing.

  • Thanks for sharing superb informations. Your web-site is very cool. I’m impressed by the details that you have on this blog. It reveals how nicely you understand this subject. Bookmarked this web page, will come back for extra articles. You, my pal, ROCK! I found simply the info I already searched everywhere and just could not come across. What a perfect site.

  • I like the helpful information you supply for your articles. I will bookmark your weblog and check again here frequently. I am moderately certain I will learn a lot of new stuff right here! Best of luck for the following!

  • Thanks for the sensible critique. Me and my neighbor were just preparing to do some research on this. We got a grab a book from our area library but I think I learned more from this post. I am very glad to see such magnificent info being shared freely out there.

  • Okay you are accurate, truly PHP is a open source and its assist we can take free from any forum or site as it takes place here at this site.

  • Hiya very nice blog!! Man .. Excellent .. Amazing .. I’ll bookmark your website and take the feeds additionally

  • Really enjoyed this blog.Thanks Again. Keep writing.

  • I have learned a few focal possessions via your post. I’d personally and similar to to mention that near can live situation where you will make claim for a lend and never hardship a cosigner such as a Government Student Abet Credit. Excluding if you are getting that lend owing to a common loan sacrament then you need to be organized to have a co-signer ready to make it easier for you. The lenders can center some result on the few factors except the prevalent will be present your credit rating. Near are approximately lend companies that will furthermore glance on your work story and decide based by that nevertheless in about each and every one gear it will axis on your credit score.

  • Also some helpful data, because of the author. They want to maintain cigarette companies alivewithout the billions of tax pounds on the cigarette business there will be a massive drop in economy(private opinion) Hey really good website!! you’ve got an incredible weblog here!

  • Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your blog and wished to say that I have truly enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. After all I will be subscribing to your feed and I hope you write again very soon!

  • obviously like your web site however you need to check the spelling on quite a few of your posts. A number of them are rife with spelling problems and I to find it very bothersome to inform the truth however I will certainly come again again.

  • You especially agree to it become become visible austere with one is presentation nonetheless We’ve this topic affiliate marketing especially central part parcel i feel A no asking price of course without doubt not understand. It is apparently exceedingly intricate as fine as incredibly broad in my opinion. I touch excited in your post, I beyond doubt try to help you have the belief from your usb slots!

  • Fantastic website. A lot of helpful information here. I am sending it to several buddies ans additionally sharing in delicious. And naturally, thank you to your effort!

  • Great look Rashmi,

  • Nice post. I learn something totally new and challenging on websites I stumbleupon everyday.
    It will always be useful to read through articles from other authors and practice something from other
    web sites.

  • hey there and thanks jdhipss to your information – I have certainly picked up something new from right here. I did on the other hand experience several technical points using this website, as I skilled to reload the website a lot of instances prior to I may just get it to load correctly. I have been pondering in case your hosting is OK? No longer that I’m complaining, however sluggish loading circumstances times will often impact your placement in google and could damage your quality score if advertising and ***********|advertising|advertising|advertising and *********** with Adwords. Anyway I am adding this RSS to my email and can look out for much more of your respective interesting content. Make sure you update this once more very soon..

  • Hi! I’ve been following your web site for a long time now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from Dallas Tx! Just wanted to tell you keep up the fantastic job!

  • Hi there, I just wanted to say, I liked this article. It was actually practical. Keep going submitting!

  • I am cheerful to see this you tube video at this website, thus right now I am also going to upload all my video tutorials at YouTube site.

  • you are in point of fact a good webmaster. The website loading velocity is incredible. It sort of feels that you’re doing any unique trick. Also, The contents are masterwork. you have done a great process on this matter!

  • hi!,I love your writing so a lot! share we keep up a correspondence more about your article on AOL? I need a specialist on this house to solve my problem. Maybe that is you! Taking a look forward to peer you.

  • Hi my loved one! I want to say that this article is awesome, nice written and include almost all important infos. I’d like to peer extra posts like this.

  • I’ve read some good stuff here. Definitely worth bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how much effort you put to create such a fantastic informative website.

  • I was just seeking this info for some time. After six hours of continuous Googleing, finally I got it in your website. I wonder what is the lack of Google strategy that do not rank this type of informative web sites in top of the list. Generally the top sites are full of garbage.

  • We’re a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Your website provided us with valuable information to work on. You have done an impressive job and our entire community will be thankful to you.

  • Thanks for all of your effort on this website. Gloria take interest in engaging in research and it is easy to understand why. Many of us know all regarding the compelling medium you make worthwhile techniques through the website and therefore improve response from the others on that subject so our favorite daughter is certainly learning a lot. Have fun with the remaining portion of the year. You have been conducting a remarkable job.

  • Wow! Thank you! I continually needed to write on my blog something like that. Can I take a portion of your post to my blog?

  • Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wanted to say that I’ve really enjoyed browsing your blog posts. After all I’ll be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again very soon!

  • Hello! I could have sworn I’ve visited this site before but after looking at many of the posts I realized it’s new to
    me. Regardless, I’m definitely pleased I found it and I’ll be book-marking it and checking back regularly!

  • Thanks for the article.Much thanks again. Keep writing.

  • Some tips i have jdhipss often told men and women is that when looking for a good on the net electronics shop, there are a few components that you have to take into account. First and foremost, you want to make sure to locate a reputable plus reliable shop that has obtained great critiques and classification from other customers and business sector experts. This will make sure that you are handling a well-known store that provides good program and support to its patrons. Thanks for sharing your thinking on this blog.

  • Excellent weblog here! Also your website lots up fast! What web host are you the use of? Can I get your affiliate hyperlink in your host? I desire my web site loaded up as quickly as yours lol

  • Excellent beat ! I would like to apprentice while you amend your site, how can i subscribe for a blog web site? The account aided me a acceptable deal. I had been tiny bit acquainted of this your broadcast provided bright clear concept

  • My developer is trying to convince me to jdhipss move to .net from PHP. I have always disliked the idea because of the costs. But he’s tryiong none the less. I’ve been using Movable-type on various websites for about a year and am worried about switching to another platform. I have heard great things about blogengine.net. Is there a way I can transfer all my wordpress content into it? Any kind of help would be greatly appreciated!

  • I’ve read some good stuff here. Definitely value bookmarking for revisiting. I wonder how a lot effort you place to make such a magnificent informative web site.

  • Im Straßenverkehr ist ein Unfall schnell passiert. Einen ersten Ãœberblick verschaffen unsere bereitgestellten Checklisten. Martin Steinreiser bietet Ihnen im Raum Berlin ein umfassendes Leistungsspektrum an, um alle Eventualitäten erfassen zu können.

  • My brother recommended I might like this blog. He was entirely right. This post actually made my day. You can not imagine simply how much time I had spent for this information! Thanks!

  • Neue Markenmode aus der ganzen Welt wird bei uns angeboten. Wir konnten sogar eine der Topmarken aus den USA erstmalig für den deutschen Online-Handel verpflichten – Victoria’s Secret.

  • I read this post fully about the difference of latest and earlier technologies,
    it’s amazing article.

  • I regard something genuinely interesting about your web blog so I saved to favorites .

  • Excellent blog right here! Additionally your website quite a bit up very fast! What host are you the usage of? Can I am getting your associate hyperlink for your host? I want my site loaded up as quickly as yours lol

  • Really informative post.Really looking forward to read more. Fantastic.

  • Very soon this web page will be famous among all blogging people, due to it’s nice articles

  • You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I find this topic to be really something which I think I would never understand. It seems too complicated and extremely broad for me. I am looking forward for your next post, I will try to get the hang of it!

  • just click the following website

  • just click the next document

  • Pingback: Gag

  • Pingback: My Out of Control Teen

  • Pingback: Free credit report gov

  • Pingback: work from home jobs

  • Pingback: fapturbo

  • Pingback: the finding

  • Pingback: family friendly fat burning meals

  • Pingback: Pure Reiki Healing Mastery Review

  • Pingback: P90X3 vs Insanity Review

  • Pingback: Part time jobs in singapore

  • Pingback: URL

  • Pingback: Sprei

  • Pingback: Inredningskatalog online

  • Pingback: handy kostenlos orten

  • Pingback: 3 Mobile UK

  • Pingback: conversational hypnosis

  • Pingback: Ariana Grande Cover

  • Pingback: best workouts for women

  • Pingback: How To Lose 10 Lbs

  • Pingback: Who is Urazov Nuray

  • Pingback: Instagram Takipçi arttirma

  • Pingback: Buy a Bong

  • Pingback: Modern Woman's Guide To Strength Training

  • Pingback: WS

  • Pingback: Brooklyn

  • Pingback: event photography

  • Pingback: j john sebastian attorney buffalo

  • Pingback: taxi in kona hawaii

  • Pingback: Thigh High Boots

  • Pingback: hefalimp cardijon