Archive for Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Journey quick, but satisfying

April 15, 2008

This is my final column for the Shawnee Dispatch.

A good journey has a quick ending.

I have decided to take a job outside of journalism for a lot of different reasons, but mainly family and time. Sometimes in life, priorities and circumstances just change, and this is one of those times.

That said, the sports section is in excellent hands with Chris Wristen and should continue to cover your teams well.

I also wanted to send a personal thanks to the coaches and players whom I got to know and cover. It was really a lot of fun to work with all of you.

I enjoyed covering all schools, but on a personal level, I enjoyed covering my alma mater, Shawnee Mission North.

I want to thank you readers for reading my work each week. For a writer, there is no better compliment. I also wanted to thank the people who I worked with at the office. They were a great staff to be a part of.

And so it is. The torch is passed to a new regime.

In closing out this chapter of my career, I would like to offer things a person learns as a sports writer.

Maybe these are things you never thought of.

You learn parents love their kids and want what is best for them, no matter what school they attend or the sport.

You learn students love to cheer for their high school.

You learn to expect inconsistency at games.

You learn that those years when everything comes together, like it did this year at Shawnee Mission Northwest, should be celebrated.

You learn coaches will sweat the losses more than any fan, because it is their job, and also take less enjoyment in the victories than the fans.

You learn sports are not as personal as people think with respect to playing time and who is on the roster.

On some level, I wish that every kid could play and there were no cuts, but that just isn't the way it works.

You learn the good moments in a game should be deeply celebrated.

You learn most people are good and want what is best for their kids.

You learn to appreciate the grind, hard work and discipline of a high school sports season.

You learn every coach loves his team's senior leadership at the beginning of the season.

You learn to respect coaches who are trying to change mentalities and build programs.

Most of all, you feel lucky to have said you were a sportswriter. You were lucky to do the job for however long it lasted, because you got to meet so many people that impacted you in ways they will never know.

I learned a lot from covering all of you. Thanks for the opportunity and good luck as this season and future seasons unfold.

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