Good morning, everyone.
Is there a wrong way to begin the day? I think there is when it comes to writing a journal. I made the mistake of checking my emails first which in turn prompted me to respond which then led to numerous other topics and letters so that it’s after 8:00 AM and only now am I beginning to write, my mind going in fifteen different directions. On the other hand, I’m fortunate to be in a beautiful space again this morning, at the dining room table looking out at the moored pleasure craft on calm water, a misty rain graying the green tree tops across the harbor, and so am able to settle down fairly quickly as I write, the mist sifting inside my imagination, tamping me down to a kind of excited stillness, anticipating the fun of the hunt for words to bring meaning to bear.
Yesterday was spent mostly in my own company, writing in the morning and after lunch in town, returning to my own company for the remainder of the day. It was the luncheon I wanted to devote this day’s journal to. Ken, the owner and editor of the local paper, and I had wanted to get together for sometime now and finally did it, meeting at Santo Coyote restaurant in LaConner, a place I’ve come to enjoy in recent months because the Mexican food is good and its big enough and quiet enough to have a pleasant (and private) conversation. Ken, he tells me, has always wanted to be a newspaper owner and editor and here he is, a fellow Buckeye from Toledo, Ohio, realizing his dream. I enjoy being with people who are where they want to be. They carry with them a certain contentment. Without for a moment turning his back on the world’s deepening plight and its discontent, he still manages to be at peace with himself. Not even the fact that the LaConner Weekly News, award-winning though it is, has only 800 subscribers and is never going to produce a wealthy livelihood, disturbs the deep satisfaction he seems to feel in being in LaConner, managing a newspaper. I really like that quality of dedication where values like truth still matter. What we have here is an old-fashion guy with old- fashion values running an old-fashion newspaper. I’m happy about that.
One of the reasons I wanted to have lunch with Ken was to tell him how much I’ve enjoyed the newspaper, that he’s carrying on a fine tradition begun with Sandy and Cindy, the former owners. His regular Editorials and Musings are thoughtful, often challenging but in every case he invites comment, wanting to get his readers involved in a conversation, to get us to see the other side of any argument. That he has had little response other than outrage and subscription cancellations is upsetting. In fact, I’m one of the few who has actually commented on anything he’s written. I’m sorry now that I didn’t write a Letter to the Editor in time to respond to the March 28th issue which spoke so much to my values which in this case included Mel Damski’s column supporting more stringent gun controls. In this particular issue, Ken himself produced two of his own poems. One was simply a listing of the different placards he witnessed on the March Against Gun Violence in March in Bellingham which was strangely poignant and moving to me. The other poem he wrote in 2005 entitled One Drummer’s Beat on the subject of Eugene McCarthy and his presidential campaign. It, too, was first rate and reminded me of that era when I was then living in Santa Fe and working for McCarthy’s election. It was, as you can imagine, a delightful lunch and conversation. We could have talked all afternoon. We plan to meet over lunch regularly, at least a couple of times a month. I’m looking forward to it. Maybe some of his vegetarianism will rub off on me. I’m aware I need more green stuff in my digestive system right now.