Thursday, June 05, 2008

Crazy, Wonderful Spring...I'm Sorry About That!

First off, please accept my deep, humiliated apology for sending out this mass mailing. I've run out of time, and it's the only way I can be sure of getting this info to folks for whom (I hope!) it should be important.

Second, this is not intended as a substitute for a personal note, but rather in addition to that. However, as I work down my list of individual notes to get out, I've realized that I'm probably not going to get to all of them - so please accept this with my humble apologies for its impersonality. I promise I will make it up to you with a fabulous meal, a good joke, or something of value.

I just wanted to get word out to you that I am taking off for a month of journalistic adventure in Asia, courtesy of the East West Center in Honolulu. I'll be out of the country from June 8 through July 9, covering close to 40,000 miles in the process. More of this later; it’s just a ‘heads-up’ that I am using this technology to get the basic word out about my apparent absence over the past several months...

It's really been an amazing spring, actually.

Briefly, shortly after returning from NY in March, a bunch of things came together very quickly.

First, I receive word that I had been accepted to participate in this wonderful international Journalism fellowship sponsored by the East West Center in Honolulu. You can read more about the Sr. Journalism Fellowship here:

East West Center Senior Journalist Fellowship/

If you have any interest in what I am doing on this fellowship, go to my website, and click on either the Itinerary or EWC Program button at the top of the page.

Next, we got word that our new news-convergence venture UniversityTimes/CoolState was named a recipient of a "New Voices" J-Lab Institute for Interactive Journalism grant to grow our operations into three 'micro-bureaus' in parts of East Los Angeles and the San Gabriel Valley where we are located. This will expand our efforts to make converged journalism a truly community based effort, to get local communities involved in the process of getting heard and getting their news out to the world at large. We are so thrilled and proud to be part of this project. More on New Voices at:
J-Lab "New Voices" Project

Finally, as if that wasn’t enough, I’ve receive tenure and promotion to Associate Professor – an accomplishment that makes me proud first as an achievement on its own, and second, as part of a really wonderful university and educational lab where I work. It’s been a long, tedious road, but now with this security, who knows what we can do next?

This message, then, is partly a way to explain why I’ve been such a bad friend over the course of the past year or two: I’ve basically had my head down, working ungodly hours to make sure I got tenure, to build our University Times/Cool State converged newsroom, and to simply survive and get enough sleep.

It is my hope and plan that from this point on, I’ll be concentrating more on visiting, cooking, seeing more of you, writing some original stuff, and living out the fulfilling and rich life I’ve built here. I will also try to reach each of you individually over the course of the next few days. Some of you I’ve promised information, some I need to get information to – any help you can provide, I’d be so grateful.

Finally, I’m going to try my damndest to report while I’m on the road in Asia and Australia. If you have any interest in following my progress, check into my site and/or on my blog here at

Thanks for reading this far! Let me know that you got this message. I thank you from the bottom of my heart for understanding what a whirlwind year this has been, and I hope to raise a glass with you very soon...

Con mucho carino; avec beaucoup de douceur, with much admiration and affection

June 5, 2008

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