28 May, 2009

midwestern editing

My time here has gone by at an amazing speed. Every day is full of little things to be learned, memorized and then put into practice. I feel very alert and inquisitive all day, which means I'm positively exhausted by about 10 p.m. Last night, after working my first shift at "The Missourian," the student/faculty paper here, Kendra and I got homemade ice cream and joined some of the others at a street-side Ben Folds concert. He finished crooning about high school around 9:30 and I was ready for bed. Pathetic. But it's a tiring life, this existence as an amateur copy editor.

The people here have been great. With regard to age and background, we are quite a diverse dozen. It's interesting to me how people are almost forced to bond in limited community. It's not like university, where you have hundreds of friends to pick and choose from. Here you have 11. And so you naturally fall into friendships with people you might not ordinarily consider. I like that. 

Some things I've learned:
- "Seeing Eye dog" is a trademark. You can't use it unless it's a dog from that program. 
- In a similar vein, there is no such thing as a Styrofoam cup.
- There might only be 30 or so distinct personalities in the world.
- The placement of "only" is often wrong.
- AP Style always ends bulleted lists with periods, even if the sentences are not complete.
- Speaking the grammar lingo is half the battle.
- The bread on Subway sandwiches is particularly bad.
- College towns look about the same everywhere.
- I should probably go to graduate school.
- Being a copy editor is actually a lot of fun.
- The editing eye becomes a sixth sense. You get instincts about this stuff; you absorb it.
- Copy editors are extremely intimidating people, but if you speak their language and do solid work, you're golden.
- All boys love "The Catcher in the Rye," "On the Road" and "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance."
- The Daily Tar Heel is an excellent student paper.
- It rains a lot in Missouri.
- Old Missourians pronounce "Missouri" like "Missoura."
- People have a lot of stereotypes about the South.

This made my day: Guion and Mr. Pratt created a brief video greeting for me. How I do love my scruffy-looking boy. 

Before I go, HUGE happy birthday wishes to Catherine, who turns 22 today. I am devastated I can't be there to celebrate with you (and, in fact, have never been there to celebrate with you on your birthday). You are a beautiful and courageous woman, and I'm honored to know you. I wish I could have a food party with you right now.

1 comment:

Rollie said...

Is the capital "S" in styrofoam the culprit?