The new Daily Texan site went live with a text saying it was time to flip the switch. After a year of work, most of it spent planning and searching for the right programmer, the final moment came down to tapping a few touch screen buttons. It was put to the test only a few hours later with the announcement of Osama bin Laden’s death, reinforcing the old Texan mantra that something big happens every semester.
As we move into a new era where the Texan will no longer be daily, I realized how much things have changed since 2009. In the two years I’ve been at the Texan, we’ve experienced the sale of its printing press, six different managing editors — all with very distinct expectations and ideas — three websites and a budget cut, which brought us down to two days of summer printing.
We might not feel the smooth ink of newspapers rub off on our hands for much longer, but as our fingers glide across the keys and our eyes glaze over and redden from too much time looking at a screen, it’s clear this is only something one does only if they’re passionate. At the Texan I’ve met some of the most dedicated reporters, photographers, designers, editors and videographers that will shape the industry and keep it alive.
Veronica, the summer managing editor and I, have watched almost all the staffers from our first semester leave, but outside of work, the cliques remain the same. Everyone shares the Texan as a common thread, and in conversation, it’s a topic we fall back on when we’ve run out of things to say.
The most interesting experiences and friendships I’ve had in college grew out of time spent here for eight hours a day. At one point or another I’ve wanted to kill every one of my coworkers, but at the end of the day we’re eating Ming’s and enjoying another Unproductive Thursday together on a balcony.
After two years of Thirsty Thursday’s, working late nights and Sundays, more than $200 in parking fines, arguing in budget meetings, in hallways and in offices, when it’s all over, staying up until 4 a.m. away from the basement will seem much more anticlimactic. The end is bittersweet. I enjoyed spending my last night trying to find a room for the staff to put out the paper because of paint fumes, but it’s been quite a ride and I’m exhausted. Now it’s someone else’s turn. Good luck, Veronica and Lena. I couldn’t think of anyone better.
Claire Cardona is a journalism junior and managing editor of the Texan. She joined in fall 2009. While there, she did a lot of editing.
B.C.- My favorite associate, your dedication has been a relief. I must admit, at first I thought you'd say 'no' and I'd have to come into work every day. Thank you for always livening the mood and making every situation uncomfortable. I never asked you what you want to do with your life, but I know you'll do it well. Hook em'
L.P. - I'm going to see you every day, but you've been an amazing friend from the start. Without you I'd still be in copy. Thank you for giving me a chance. Your dry sense of humor and skill with words will take you wherever you want to go, even deaf education. Watch out for that soul eating cat.
A.M. - The only story I remember assigning you was some talk in the LBJ Library and you came back with a well-written piece in your first week. I'm glad you stuck with journalism and stayed in the basement with us every day. Have fun in Arkansas, can't wait to visit. We'll get coffee and bagels and drinks and more food. I'll always remember the time we went jogging in the rain.
M.R. - You're an incredible programmer and a great find. If one day the whole site is full of kittens i'll know why. It's been a pleasure working with you.
V.R. - Don't hesitate in anything you do, your instincts have never proven you wrong. As a designer and a manager, you know how to get it done, and this summer is all yours to do it. This is the change the Texan needs, I'm proud of you.
J.B. - you've far exceeded my hopes for the department. Now you can watch it grow and know you ignited the change. It's far more rewarding than sticking around. Stop wallowing in your sadness, get out of the basement and have fun.
D.W.- The humble Texan adviser, your calm words and anecdotes from days past have got me through many long nights. Thank you for countless dinners and always being there to talk me off a ledge. You're the Texan's most valuable asset and everyone knows it.
G.R.- Seems like you've switched from tea to liquor, but I hope we get to enjoy whatever again some time, outside of work, away from the pressure.
Copy: You're under-appreciated, but thank you for everything you do. S.F., A.M., R.R. and A.M. have made the late nights bearable.