I wanted to be the first to say goodbye .
You had a good run . I hope that you go out with style and elegance . Please , at least , no whimpering . Remember old Harrison Gray Otis . Make him proud . Don’t drag it out through several years of more hopeless downsizing . Please don’t sell out to Malcolm . Maybe try to go out with a bang . [ I don’t mean the type of bang you had in 1910 when those guys blew up your building ] .
You did your best . It’s not your fault . The world changed under your printers . The Chandlers sold you to Chicago several years ago . I know that had to have been a hint . I know you’re not stupid , although at times misguided , as are most of us from time to time . Maybe you should have quit then . Just quit . After all , a Chicago outfit reporting local L.A. news ? Really ?
But you struggled on .
I was sorry to see your Garden section go . I liked Bob Smaus . Don’t know if I spelled his name right . But , I suppose , a Garden Section is one of the first to be thrown overboard when the ship is in trouble . And , what happened to Metro ? I liked Metro . Now we have California . Is that what replaced Metro ? I was never sure .
You have a lot of international news , mostly about the Middle East . What’s the latest explosion ? How many were killed ? Where , of course . Next day same thing , different town or province or country , different number killed . Do I need to know ? Really ? Sometimes I read the Military Deaths section , mostly nineteen and twenty year olds , stuck way back in the back pages somewhere . How about putting that on the front page ? Never thought of that , or what ?
Too late for suggestions now , I guess . You’re in newspaper hospice .
I don’t like your Travel section much these days , anyway , I have to say . It was one of the last sections that I really enjoyed . What’s with these hotels for $450 a night ? But , you would point out , there’s an introductory offer of only $415 a night for this week only . You stopped writing for me some time ago , years and years ago . Don’t worry , I don’t take it personally . I don’t think that the world revolves around me . I just wonder who is your readership now . News flash : the (reader) ship is sinking fast . Your advertisers have vamoosed by the cartload , jumped ship as fast as they can , from what I hear . They already hear the banshees wail .
I was reading last week in The Times about the two billion dollar makeover of the Tom Bradley terminal at LAX . Your reporter wrote that the terminal was designed for the ultra-rich . Maybe I read that wrong ? I don’t think so , though . Maybe they are the ones, the ultra-rich , who read your Travel section now and get ideas about where to scoot off to on their next vacation .
Jump , people , jump ! Sorry , I got a little carried away for a moment .
I need your paper when I paint . I put the paint can down on it and stick pages in the corners to protect the floor. I’ll miss having a stack .
I don’t mean to be disparaging . I know that last statement sounded like that . You were a pretty good paper , I always thought . Very screwed up on your editorial opinion about the schools , I thought , because that was my game , teaching . But , you backed the private industry and the simple minded theories , and the charter schools . Any charter school . What else did you know to do ? It all sounded pretty good to the reading populace . You pounded us teachers . You really did . Dirty anti -student unionists ! Old man Otis would have been proud . Charter schools : good. Public schools : bad . Locke High School , for example . Well , I won’t get into that . Suffice it to say , you should have been a bit more honest , or analytical , or something . Just say , for example , right there in print : Did the academic performance go up at Locke when the charter ran it ? At all ? Why did you leave that out of your long-winded praises of the charter company that took over Locke ?
I apologize for mentioning some of my little petty grievances at this point . But , you know that I wrote you about them all along . But I know , what’s done is done.
I’m sorry to see you go , really . Bye . You were a close friend . We didn’t need to see eye to eye to remain together . I liked you . I really did .
Oh. You haven’t told your readers yet the seriousness of your condition ? Sorry to spill the beans . You should give them a chance to say goodbye , I think . It’s what’s called closure , these days . Closure .