A few handy facts about your new opinion editor

Daniel Pike

For many of you, the breathless wait is over. Today you finally meet the Herald’s opinion page editor for Spring 2003.

Well, sorry to disappoint you. To steal a line from the great Local H, “It’s only me, it’s only stupid me.”

After belching out several miserable drafts of this introduction column, I realized that with the exception of Ford Mustangs, the NBA and Nick Nolte movies, there’s nothing quite as pathetic as a columnist who pontificates about his or her self.

But that won’t stop me. This column was, after all, my idea. Besides, it’s imperative that Herald readers take an in-depth look at the Hill’s newest opinion-maker.

So I’m soldiering forward. These are the essential facts, arranged in easy-to-read bullet form.

•If you encounter me somewhere — in the back corner of a class, in the Herald office, in a tree, or hunkered behind your car — I probably won’t say too much. Don’t be offended. You are not involved in my plot.

•When you aren’t looking at me, I’m four inches tall.

•As a high school thespian, I portrayed Atticus Finch in “To Kill a Mockingbird” and Lucien P. Smith in “The Boys Next Door.” That’s a pretty good indication of the range of sophistication you can expect from this semester’s opinion page.

•I abhor smarmy, talentless student columnists who squeeze out rambling, self-important columns designed only to fill space. Obviously, I would never be so obvious.

•Right about now the Herald bosses really —really — wish they’d hired someone else.

•I know why we park in a driveway and drive on a parkway. But I’m not telling, just to be a jerk.

•Journalism is my safety profession, settled upon only after slooooooowly reaching the conclusion that I’ll never be a rock/film/television star. It seems clinical obesity severely limits one’s sex appeal.

•Sunday night, I dreamt I was living in a wilderness cabin with MacGyver and Britney Spears. We were attempting to capture a Yeti in a raccoon trap. I kid you not. I couldn’t make that up.

•Right now, my parents really — really –?think I could put my writing ability to better use.

Justifiably, columns such as this tend to elicit crushing silence from the readership.

Therein lies a major problem: Without reader feedback in the form of letters to the editor, there is a tremendous likelihood that I’ll have to make this column a regular feature.

No one wants that. So start pounding out those letters.

Disagree with an editorial? Let us know. Wish to question our story decisions? Keep it under 250 words. Want to lob a personal attack at me? That’s fine, but remember that I’m 6-2, 250 pounds and a former middle school athlete.

That’s my only request, and as long as it’s met this semester will be A-OK.

Now, for those of you who’ve made it to this far, I’ve saved a special bullet point.

•The end of this column.

Daniel Pike is a junior print journalism major from Glasgow. Reach him at [email protected]