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Barbara Lombardo of Saratoga Springs, NY, is a journalism adjunct at University at Albany and retired executive editor of The Saratogian, The Record and the Community News. Follow her on Twitter @Barb_Lombardo.

Monday, January 19, 2009

One in Cincinnati, one being X-rayed

Today was not quite your typical Monday morning in the newsroom, yet not that unusual, either. Looking at the schedule of today's Martin Luther King activities, Assistant Managing Editor Betsy DeMars and I agreed that a reporter should go to the afternoon events and take the group bus to Skidmore for the film and panel taking place there. That would be an assignment for Andrew Bernstein, one of our three reporters.
As if on cue, the phone rings. It's Andrew. In Cincinnati. He was away for the weekend (a rare weekend when he wasn't working), and is waylaid. Temporarily, I hope, but not in time to count on for the MLK coverage.
Meanwhile, finishing up the Monday morning payroll paperwork, I notice there is no timecard from reporter Ann Marie French, and no answer on her home phone. She picks up her cell phone right away -- while she is having a foot X-rayed following a fall down her basement steps. Won't be in the office at least until Wednesday.
Arrghh! Never mind today's stories, so much for having Ann Marie work on Tuesday's local inauguration coverage. (Copy editor Mareesa Nicosia will be stretching her day, doing local coverage and then changing hats to edit and paginate.)
So one reporter is still on the last leg of his journey home, and one reporter may have leg supported by crutches. The remaining one-third of our reporting staff, Paul Post, will do most of the writing today; I'll be contributing a story about the Dart family in D.C.; the patriarch, Clarence Dart, was a Tuskegee Airman. I also am going to write an editorial for Tuesday's paper. And I'll be doing editing and pagination of pages for the paper, too.
We are never, ever bored in the newsroom.


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