Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Just Roll With the Punches

This self-portrait was taken a week or so ago and it makes me laugh to see it.  I had been chafing under self-imposed inactivity while my shoulder healed but when the 19th rolled around - our "Island Anniversary" day we celebrate every month, - Goldfish and I just knew we had to get outside and hike.  We made plans all day for after work - where we would hike, what we would bring for a picnic, if we thought the weather would hold.  We stopped at Safeway and picked up what we needed for a picnic lunch, right down to water and dog treats for Chico.  We got to one of our favorite whale watching spots and spread out our feast, the weather was superb.  Just then they started firing down on the gun range, Chico freaked out, Kelly and I looked at each other and sighed, wordlessly packed everything back up again, collected the panicked dog, and headed home.

On other Alaska blogging fronts, the Dillingham public radio station News Director resigned from her job today under a storm of criticism for perceived poor taste in the contents of her personal blog, www.chillyhell.blogspot.com .  I scanned the blog quickly to get an idea of the tone of her blog - one item that caught my eye was she used to work for our very own Anne Hillman - and I have to say that for me, she does seem a bit snarky for someone supposedly representing the common good.  You can read the Anchorage Daily News article here.  Drop me a comment, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the issue.

My brother should be here in about 12 hours!  Right about now my son should be picking him up at the Anchorage Airport and letting him crash at his place until his flight in the morning.  Great job Bro on an epic journey - he left his house 20 hours ago, driving to Portland, Maine where he took a bus to Boston.  From Boston to Portland, Oregon, then on to Anchorage.  Poor guy, it's taking him a day and a half just to get here.  And you know, if you look on a globe, it really is a very long ways from Maine to Unalaska, no matter how you travel.


Gigi said...

Sorry your outing got cut short! I had not heard about the Dillingham news director. That's where Anne was working before she moved here--she is out of town but I will be interested in her reaction when she returns. This is an issue that I think about when I am blogging about Unalaska. I think we have a responsibility to be respectful of the local community and its residents, though I also come down on the side of freedom of speech-- people can say what they want to say, though that also means that they get to live with the consequences. I don't think we can tell people what they can write about. However, if they choose to use a certain tone or to speak disparagingly of people or the community, then the community also has a right to respond. I do think we walk a fine line when people know where we work and may wonder if our views represent our employer, which can be pretty tricky. Like it or not, we are seen as representatives of our jobs out in the community, even after work hours, especially in a small town where people know us and know what we do for a living. I guess that is why some writers have anonymous blogs or use pseudonyms so they can say what they REALLY think. :) I looked at her blog and frankly, I would never say some of the things she said. Yes, there are problems in any community, but they can be addressed in a more positive and helpful tone. I am not surprised that people found her to be hurtful and insulting.

So glad your brother is getting to come and visit! Hope you guys have a blast!

PS You will have to tell me your whale watching spot so I can take my sis, niece and nephew in a couple of weeks.

TwoYaks said...

Instead of spamming up your comment section with a big, long comment, I made my thoughts into a post. :)

Anonymous said...

I read her blog and the two articles. This subject is close to my heart- I've blogged about my job, I've admitted to things on my blog that I would not admit to in a professional context. My take:

Everyone deserves a personal life. Some of us write in our personal lives and about our personal thoughts and opinions. Humans aren't robots, and I think that it is beyond time for society and organizations to realize that just because someone is in a position of authority or notoriety, it shouldn't bind them to the highest of standards in their personal life.

I see a lot of really effed up people who are not subject to scrutiny call for the heads of people who are less effed up but are held to a higher standard. It's oppressive.

What she said was in poor taste, absolutely. I can see why people were offended, even if it made me want to go drinking with her. When are we going to get to the point in society that we stop wrecking people's careers because they are offensive on their own time?

Also, I MUST agree with her on one point. I get drunk with friends frequently. We watch out for each other. We use designated drivers. We help each other to the couch and cover each other up with blankets and leave water and aspirin on the coffee table. That a group of people would allow this young woman to wander off into the Alaskan tundra under dangerous weather conditions disturbs and sickens me. Maybe I'm missing some circumstances here, but I live in a mild area, and my friends wouldn't let me go play outside by myself if I were drunk.

One more thing- are people offended by her words, or the truth behind them? I'm not close enough to know.

Anonymous said...

Men died so we could have freedom of speech, obviously in vain.

Jennifer McKenzie said...

It's become my new practice to avoid controversial blogs during the week. I will check out the links.
YAY your brother is coming to town!! I know you love that.
You and Golden look fantastic.

Jennifer McKenzie said...

Wow! Having read some of those comments in response to the woman's blog, I'm concerned about our ability to communicate with each other.
I question the wisdom of using information obtained in the process of her job to blog something "funny". But what REALLY gets me is that residents didn't seem to be aware she WAS blogging about their town. In other words, they didn't pay any attention until someone pointed the finger.
One person said "Welcome to the consequences". That's my take. Yes, you can say what you think however you want to say it, but there are consequences.
Unfortunately, hers are to resign.
It's an unfortunate fact that when you say what you think in a small town, most people brand you and don't forget.
Small towns are universal in this.

Bren said...

Kelly!!! you skinny you!

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Lori said...

Steve - where in the world did these last comments come from? Yikes, haven't read the "other" blog and probably won't - I just love your position uplifting blog - makes my day.