Editor’s Notebook: 4/4/11

Jeff Genung

• Happy day after my birthday! I know you’re all tired out from the day-long celebration yesterday (or perhaps you’re still wrapping those belated presents), so I’ll get right to it …

• April Fool’s! Proving my theory that satire is darned near impossible in Chenango County, Melissa Stagnaro’s website “breaking news” about the governor consolidating all local schools into one saw mixed reactions when it appeared online Friday. Those who read beyond the headline and first sentence of the story (and many, clearly, did not) realized it was an April Fool’s joke pretty quickly. Reaction was generally favorable, but there were a few who didn’t “get” it – or did and didn’t appreciate it. If you actually read the whole thing, nowhere did it make fun of people losing their jobs (in fact it said we’d have to add jobs). Anyway, I can appreciate that not everyone found it hilarious, and I took it down from the website in short order. We really don’t go out of our way to be insensitive – in fact I’m sure Melissa, who’s reported on the school budget crisis more than anyone here, felt the situation could use a little levity (and apparently a few superintendents agreed!). Still, if anyone was truly offended, we apologize. Only to those who demanded that I fire Melissa forthwith on Friday do I say, “Lighten up.”

• Word has it there were standing-room only crowds this weekend for “Phantom of the Opera” at Norwich High School. Bravo! I’m heartened to see a community that has appreciation for the arts – and for the students who express their talents though them.

• So I’m certainly glad that the Norwich Rehabilitation and Nursing Center up on Calvary Drive found new owners and is doing well – but did they really have to change the name? I’m sure they had a good reason for doing that, but it’ll take some getting used to. Count me among the many who feel that both Pearl and Everett Gilmour, for whom the health care facility was formerly named, deserve a lasting honor in this community.