Reality Bites by James A. Norton

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What a difference a year makes…

So it’s been a year for this newspaper. Some say it was the best thing that ever happened to the publisher, others wondered what the Hell was he thinking. A year later and you can tell he made the right choice to do things the right way and make a break from people who were doing nothing for him personally and professionally.

I applauded his choice, for I made the same kind of choice from the same people – one in particular – although mine was a far more deeply personal choice. Of course mine rippled through the rumor mill that I had done something wrong or there was a big fight or something shady had happened. Truth is, my choice was to just walk away and distance myself from a sick and twisted situation that was doing nothing except sending me to an early grave.

Best choice I ever made in my life. But enough about me – let’s get back to the last year. Since this newspaper started 52 weeks ago, from that very first issue which was put together on a wing and a prayer, the format has developed, the level of positivity compared to the previous involvement has evolved and the quality level has increased ten-fold.

Of course part of that change was including my column, but, I would say that it was a very small part of a much larger process that was both welcomed and reviled in the community. What would Somerville be without that ying and yang that never ceases. Not so much the haves and the have nots, but, more likely the normals and the morons. The stars and the wannabees. You get the picture.

So here we are a year later. My column runs weekly. My wife’s son writes the cooking column when he can. I don’t have anything to do with the publishing or the operation of this newspaper, but, I am a big part of the Boston News Group and developing a large-scale regional news organization that relies less on print publication and more on the production of online-based multimedia broadcasting. I like working with Billy and the rest of the people behind the scenes in this business – I did, after all, run the original newspaper which is wilting into a soon to be remembered footnote in local history as a failure, level expert.

They say karma will always come calling when you’ve done as much damage as you can possibly do to yourself. I think those days are coming for some and the collateral damage will speak more to the creepy legacy of a few who operated with impunity until their luck ran out. That’s what happens when you don’t change with the times and for the better. Too bad for them. Or not. At this point, does anyone really care? Really? #GMK

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