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Loving The Depth Print Media Provides

MidWeek is 30 years old, and that’s a pretty cool thing.

It’s also quite remarkable and a bit mind-boggling. Remarkable because MidWeek has survived Hawaii’s turbulent and messy news scene, and is still going strong and, indeed, thriving after all these years. Mind-boggling because it’s still evolving, while maintaining its status as a respected voice in our community.

I’m proud to say this is my 13th year as a member of the MidWeek family.

It was 2001 when I penned my first column. Our son was entering first grade. It was a full five years before the idea of retiring from KGMB News entered my mind. And a few months after I started, the world as we know it came to an end on Sept. 11.

A lot has happened in 13 years.

My son is in college. I’m “retired” from news and have found a new passion in photography.

The smoking rubble of the Twin Towers led us to the implacable mountains of Afghanistan and (tragically) to the vast untamable country of Iraq. We’re still mired unhappily in both, to some extent.

In 13 years the information landscape has splintered, multiplied, been invaded and absorbed by and into the world of blogs and social media.

But here’s what hasn’t changed for me: the connection with you, our readers, that I’ve felt from my very first column.

You see, when I left TV news, I thought that connection would be severed, or at the very least, severely diminished. After all, I was no longer in the thick of things, reporting or anchoring on the happenings of the day. I went from public figure to ordinary citizen overnight.

Or so I thought. MidWeek was what kept me connected. For that I will always be grateful.

And, in fact, in many ways the connection became stronger. Instead of hopping from scene to scene, event to event, I found I was able to take my time developing relationships and stories. I now have conversations with people rather than shoot-’em and-run interviews. I can delve deeper, share more and give you a better opportunity to have your say without the constraints of a 30-minute news “package.”

I’ve learned to breathe.

We communicate.

What gets printed is often a more complete version of something I would have given short shrift in my previous career.

But then that’s one of the beauties of print over TV — you have the time and the space to give a person a true voice, rather than a 20-second sound bite. What a luxury.

Thank you, MidWeek, for keeping me in the family and for allowing me to explore the voices and the stories that give Hawaii its beating heart. And thank you, MidWeek readers, for taking the time to read, to respond, to agree and disagree.

You’ve made me a better journalist, a better writer, a better listener … and a better person.

Happy birthday, MidWeek, and many, many more.

Twitter: @JadeMoon1