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Today's word on journalism

March 17, 2009

Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 1863-2009

"Can Seattle's oldest newspaper be successfully transformed into a child of the information age? The Northwest is a land of big dreams. With the demise of the Soviet Union, one quipster noted that Puget Sound is now home to three empires still bent on global dominion: Microsoft, Amazon.com and Starbuck's. If the stars align properly and with a quality product, Seattle will show the way to a new model for journalism of the written word."

--Joel Connelly, columnist, in today's final print edition of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer

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Feedback and suggestions--printable and otherwise--always welcome. "There are no false opinions."

Moving to smaller town means adjusting to the simple life

By Scott Anderson

February 23, 2009 | LOGAN -- Everyone has a set routine that they like to follow. Whether it is about waking up in the morning or watching a college football game, we all do things a certain way. Interrupting that process not only has the possibility of ruining your karma, but also makes us feel uncomfortable and out of place. Usually we are able to work things out for ourselves, but what if this change of pace is drastic? What if it appears to turn from a sprint into a crawl with no warning? Surely there must be some way to overcome such a dramatic change.

The change I speak of is moving from a fast-paced metropolis to a much smaller town. Moving is not easy in the first place, but this type of change would appear to border on inhumane if done unwillingly. This is something that I have experienced for myself, but I am always afraid that when I draw an opinion about something I do not take a close look at all the facts. Perhaps that is the journalist in me. I decided to make it a point to speak with a few people who have been through this transition and see what their thoughts on the issue were.

Loila Anderson, a resident of Logan over 40 years, moved to Logan from the Los Angeles area in 1968. One big change for Anderson was the time it took to get around. "I was geared to the time it took to get to places ... it seemed to take about an hour to get everywhere [in Los Angeles]."

Once she arrived in Logan, it was a much different story. "My goodness, I thought. I can walk to the center of town just three blocks away. Everything seemed to be within a five minute walk, as opposed to an hour long drive."

Michelle Theruer, a student at Utah State University, experienced much the same thought process on her move to Logan from the Denver area.

"You can get anywhere you want in the matter of a few minutes. Everything is really close and convenient." Theruer added that there's both an upside and a downside to this. "There's just not a whole lot of options, but because of that, I'm able to see friends of mine just about anywhere I go."

One thing that stood out to Eliese Levin, a college student from Chicago was the fact that everybody seemed to know each other. "It's interesting to see how close people are and how small a world it is," Levin said.

"It's cool to have everything so close, but at the same time, I miss the big city and certain aspects of it."

For Levin, the slower lifestyle was one of the hardest things to adjust to. "I miss the hustle and bustle. The big buildings, the lights, and the skyscrapers."

The social aspect of life is bound to change some whenever and wherever you move. You have to make it a point to be outgoing. Anderson offers the advice to "Give more than 50 percent. Extend yourself, but do it carefully."

While you may be unhappy with the way things look at first, you should not try to change things around you to make it feel more like home. Says Anderson, "Get to understand the community before you try to change it."

Theurer agreed with Anderson, adding that you should "embrace the new culture that a small town offers. You may not see it at first, but give it a shot."

Other stories are available all over the internet and offer a similar view into the adjustment. There is even a " How-To guide that gives you a good general sense of things you may encounter and ways that you can deal with certain situations. There is no substitute, however, for advice from real people who have been there and done it before. There are discussion boards that you can find where stories are told and ideas are traded. All of this was great information that I felt could not only help me out, but anybody who was going to be in this same situation.

To me, the adjustment is more of a mental thing than anything else. If you give anything a shot, then chances are you will probably end up finding a way to enjoy it. I will not go so far as to saying that all of you will love the life of living in a small town. In all honesty, I am not a big fan of it myself. Like I said though, you can learn to make the best of it. There are great things about it, you just have to get out there and find them for yourself.

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