Dec 21, 2001
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At exactly this time, on this day, a year ago -- the Friday before Christmas -- I found myself standing in the aisle of a neighborhood bookstore grinning like crazy.
Partly this was due to the fact that it was the very first moment of personal-time (besides sleeping) I'd taken since the early fall of 1999. There I was, out of the office in broad daylight! It made my head spin.
But a bigger part of my smile was because of Sherpa. That afternoon in the hardback fiction department of the Dupont Circle Crown Books Superstore, I suddenly, consciously realized how happy I am to be doing this. To be the lucky one who gets to call you guys up on the phone, make friends, learn about all the smart marketing tactics you're using, and then to share your stories with the whole community (now 100,000 of you!) who read us each week. It's a lovely job.
Today I poked around the Web a bit, checking out other columnists' views of 2001. "It was tough" they said, "It was awful." "Heaven forbid 2002 should continue to be like this."
Well, yes it was a very hard year. Lots of friends and readers lost their jobs. Several competitors who I admired fell by the wayside. And Sherpa, like most online media companies, had to work harder with fewer people. This morning I wondered if I wasn't getting burned out from it all. I told a Web designer on the phone, "Sometimes I can't bear to hear the word 'dot-com' anymore."
Then, just a few minutes ago I remembered that moment in the bookstore. So, I took a quick look inside -- and there that smile was. Big and fat. I've got the best job in the world. Thanks to you guys for making it possible. :-)