Headline: 'Citizen journalists' in media's future?
By Sam Fulwood III
Date: June 15, 2006
Topic: It's a time-honored columnist's trick: Whenever you don't want to write, simply run a series of letters you've received in response to a previous "effort." (It's called recycling, people. Remember, Sam's a progressive). In today's adventure, readers chime in about Sam's column on the future of journalism, which unfortunately includes him.
Difficulty: 2/10. This one required several tasks Sam is known to despise and once attempted to have removed from his job description. They include checking his e-mail, using the phone, and talking about things other than "Sammy F."
Originality: 0/10. Sam decides to weigh in on a debate that's 15 years old. Best boldly unoriginal line: "I fretted that young people seem to prefer pixilated communications over traditional ink-on-paper." In other words, Sam reveals that "young people" like the internet.
Sam Gets Poetic: N/A. The rules of the SF3 Remix allow other people to do the talking. Sam just fills the space between their quotes and calls it a day.
The Master Has Spoken: "Most of the more than 500 people who responded by e-mail, letter or phone agreed with me." As usual.
What Sam Reveals About Sam: Despite the grueling nature of the job -- which sometimes requires him to actually leave the house -- Sam likes his job. When a college kid tells Sam he wants to have "a long career at a newspaper," Sam writes: "So do I, Kevin. So do I." Apparently it hasn't been long enough.
CliffsNotes version: Honestly, I tweaked my back yesterday when I was patting it, so I wasn't really up to getting out of bed today. But I've got all these e-mails here from that one column I wrote about the internet and news. So I'll just print those. Robert in Oberlin likes to read me in newsprint. Peter prefers the web. Tim in Avon Lake envisions a future wherein my greatness will be read only online. Kevin the Kent State student wants to be a big-shot journalist like me. And who can blame him? Nap time!
Sam Recycles for John Marshall
Headline: Graduates ride on big shoulders
By Sam Fulwood III
Date: June 13, 2006
Topic: Sam recycles his graduation speech to the kids at John Marshall High. International War Tribunal now debating whether to charge him with crimes against humanity.
Difficulty: 0/10. Reprinting a graduation speech is the journalistic equivalent of forwarding email.
Sam Gets Poetic: "So instead of tossing clichéd platitudes to the graduates, I want to celebrate those who will soak up every second of this night like a dry sponge absorbs water on the kitchen counter."
The Master Has Spoken: "I suspect you probably won't remember much of what I say anyway."
What Sam Reveals About Sam: When he was waiting to collect his diploma 30 years ago, he was thinking, "Let's get this over, because there's a party somewhere and I want to get there." Sam later had two beers and threw up on his girlfriend, who dumped him for the president of the A/V Club.
CliffsNotes version: I was invited to give a speech to 282 graduates of John Marshall High School. But there's no way I was gonna do that and write an original column this week! So I figured I'd just reprint the address I gave. Here goes: You dumb kids don't care what I'm saying, so I'm gonna speak to your parents. John Donne once said something smart, which will save me the trouble of writing an original paragraph. You kids gotta pay taxes and vote. Life is hard for people who don't have sweet columnist gigs. Congrats, class of 2006, now where's my honorarium?
Sam Denounces Opposition to Gay Marriage
Headline: Politics wedded to hypocrisy
By Sam Fulwood III
Date: June 8, 2006
Topic: Sam boldly pens an open letter to Bush denouncing the president's opposition of gay marriage.
Difficulty: 0/10. Fullwood doesn't interview anyone, and grants anonymity to the two purported "friends" he writes about.
Sam Gets Poetic: "He's invited me to worship at his church, where we prayed for tolerance, respect and dignity for all mankind." God responded with a form letter saying Sam's prayer was being processed, and that He would provide a "formal response and/or miracle within 90 business days."
The Master Has Spoken: "I write you because I suspect you don't know many men like me, who are secure enough in their masculinity to say they love other men." Message to reader: Sam Fulwood is a highly unique and evolved individual.
What Sam Reveals About Sam: Cleveland's reigning metrosexual is actually down with the people, since he has a friend who is a "manly man." Together, they once drank beers "back to back" while watching "ball games" in what Sam describes as a "male-bonding orgy that lasted an entire weekend." In other words, he once behaved like a normal Clevelander.
CliffsNotes Version: I love other men, but that doesn't make me a homo. I once enjoyed a wine spritzer while watching a sporting event with a buddy who drank beer. Out of the can. It was so exciting! I'm so much of a man that I actually met a homo on an airplane once and didn't switch seats. In fact, I've gotten to be good friends with him. He even invited me to dinner and church. To be perfectly honest, I have developed such a close friendship with this swishy gentleman that I often mention him in my columns when I want to prove how much of a man I am (Hey, Steve!). Did I mention I've been married to a woman for 22 years? Yup, I'm a real man. A man who's not afraid to sit next to gay guys on airplanes.