Rumor Has It
Wednesday, March 25, 2020
As I type this, I have no idea what’s about to take place, but things look real uncertain for the Cascadia Weekly.
Despite an outpouring of community support—that came with donations from some of our longest and staunchest readers—it’s not enough to counterbalance the breathtaking loss of advertising revenue that happened within the space of just a few days due to COVID-19 closures.
These advertisers were as heartbroken to stop placing ads with us as we were to lose them—we get it. They’re suffering too, some of them catastrophically so. We’ve always prided ourselves on our fiercely local ad base—we are supported by the very same community that we support. It’s how it’s supposed to be.
At present, we don’t know what the future holds, only that it is uncertain and we don’t have much left in the tank. But save for some kind of 11th-hour miracle, on hiatus we will have to go, and what happens after that is unclear. In that, we are in plentiful and excellent company.
No matter what the coming strange days hold, writing for the Weekly and especially writing this column, for you, for so many years has been the gift of my life. Period, full stop. Through it I have done and learned so much, and all of you have been my sounding board and soft place to land from the start. You have forgiven me when I have been clumsy and praised me beyond what is reasonable when I manage to get things right. You have thoroughly embraced each and every iteration of the chicken with an affection I thought only I felt for chickens.
But mostly, you have read what I’ve had to say, week in and week out, with an interest and devotion that has felt like nothing short of a miracle. I’m not sure I earned it, but I’ll sure take it.
However, the greatest benefit of this job has always been you. I’ve met and come to care about so many of you that I can’t begin to take measure of it. I’ve gotten to write about and bring attention to what you’re up to, and, in turn, you’ve kept me in the loop and allowed me to be part of and a mouthpiece for this rich and rewarding community.
I don’t know what comes next, not for me and not for the Cascadia Weekly. These are bizarre and troubling times, with each day more surreal than the last. But I do know for a fact that if this is the final time you read me, I have few regrets and would do nearly all of it over again. In a heartbeat. Writing for you has been an honor without parallel. I hope to see you on the other side.*
*If a miracle does occur and an issue of the paper comes out next week, forget I said any of this.