Silence is argument carried out by unemployment

<i>“I don't care if I fall as long as someone else picks up my pen and keeps on writing.” -- What Andy Binion would say, I think, unless he was just asking for directions to the Sev.</i>
“I don't care if I fall as long as someone else picks up my pen and keeps on writing.” -- What Andy Binion would say, I think, unless he was just asking for directions to the Sev.

Wherever we are in the stages of grief, it’s clearly not over, based on the complaints aimed at those of us trying to fill the shoes Andy Binion left behind here.

Believe us, we’re not happy about this either.

I’ve been in contact with Andy a couple of times and he is, if nothing else, staying pretty busy, which explains why I haven’t seen any police reports that include his name. I guess the other part is I don’t read the police reports where Andy hangs out these days.

When we started the Bremerton Beat in late 2005 it was with the idea that this could be a central hang out for people interested in the city, for people who wanted to get beyond the Code 911 stories in which Bremerton figures so prominently and the stories about downtown redevelopment. Along the way we had some fun, a lot of it at the expense of Port Orchard, and developed a bit of a voice.

Then I shifted primarily over to county, port and state issues and Andy took over and made this place his own. I, as much as anyone, looked forward to his take on dead cats on his car, visitors to the city and the tickets that were being issued even when mail wasn’t being delivered. I think the Bremerton Beat was the funnest blog on the street, kicking the crap out of the Caucus in wit and wisdom.

Oddly, Andy doesn’t think he did a very good job at the blog. I got an e-mail from him yesterday saying as much. I beg to differ. So do most of you, I bet.

Sadly, this is the state of our business these days. The newspaper business is, I hope, transforming, but in the meantime good writers hit the road. Andy was certainly one of those.

I say “I hope” above, because I hope the biz is not dying. I trust that however it looks, news gathering will continue. The rise of the Internet should mean more people are providing it. We hope that means there will still be money in it, enough for me to send my kids to college so they can get better paying jobs than their old man. And yet here I am, to some degree, contributing to the industry’s demise, by posting something you get to read for free and hidden from those who pay for our stuff.

Beyond hoping there’s a place for me in the future of this business, I also hope there’s a place for Andy and the writers who will be umbilical cordless when the P-I shuts down.

For Andy I’m optimistic, because as good as he was, I never got the sense that “reporter” was what he was. For some of us, what we do probably matters too much. My dad retired from being a police officer 30 years ago, but he’s still a cop. Some of us in this business come in as reporters and have to learn to write or writers who have to learn to report. But at our core, we remain mostly what we came in as. Andy, I believe, is a story teller and an activist. Surely, there is a place for that somewhere in this world, probably now more than ever.

7 thoughts on “Silence is argument carried out by unemployment

  1. Oddly, Andy doesn’t think he did a very good job at the blog. I got an e-mail from him yesterday saying as much. I beg to differ. So do most of you, I bet.

    I very much enjoyed his style but see his point. There are corporate limits to what he could write in the Kitsap Sun. Without these constraints he could really open up into his fuller potential. In any case, he will succeed no matter where he lands. So will you.

  2. “Andy, I believe, is a story teller and an activist. Surely, there is a place for that somewhere in this world, probably now more than ever.”

    I agree… Andy will be fine and flourish….as long as he stays away from car parking places and keeps riding his bike around unsavory places.
    Tell him he started something…he IS AN ACTIVIST and gifted writer… storyteller, as you said. Ask if he is interested in COPD activism. 🙂

    In the short time he wrote the Bremerton Beat after you left he made his mark here as a sensitive, curious, funny guy who cared about people and animals – and issues.
    Vulnerable too… someone just like the rest of us but with a huge offbeat imagination and talent to write.

    That is one of the things really great here… super reporters, different writing styles…all able to get the point across.

    We’re lucky to be living in these times of newspaper flux…we see the change unfold…hopefully into great pay for reporters in the print/online work of reporting local news and issues.

    BTW: Every now and again I go through our paper subscription, surprised how good it feels to hold a newspaper and read through it. The KS is a dandy size too…just right.

    Thanks too all of you sticking with us when we rave, complain and seem unappreciative.
    Sharon O’Hara

  3. The de prioritizing of print media is being accelerating by the drop of the economy. There are a lot of print media publications that are going under or going 100% online in a much smaller form.

    I feel guilty since I am a blogger and getting handheld portable internet device to read from. I think that TV is more to blame than online media. This hasn’t been happened overnight.

    That photo of Andrew reminded me of Hunter S. Thompson. We can’t stop in Bremerton.. This is Bat Country!!

  4. Ouch…I didn’t think I was THAT hard on you guys yesterday. I will be the first one to admit that because I have been spending much of my time chewing on a board…a school board that is, I did not have my indoor voice fully back in place yet. The loud snarky one was still showing a little.

    I really enjoy the information, options and choices that both the print and the online version of a local news source brings to our fair community.

  5. Binion-ites…rejoice.

    Our beloved Andrew is once again a reporter for a Kitsap County Publication….just not this one.

    Andrew is now writing for the North Kitsap Herald. Now, if they will only give him a blog of his own, we could all be just a little bit happier. Please show your support of Andrew’s current employment, by letting the North Kitsap Herald know that we are very happy to have him back reporting on our community news….even if it’s only Poulsbo.

Leave a Reply to Sharon O'Hara Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Before you post, please complete the prompt below.

Enter the word yellow here: