Page Two: A New Day, a New Dance
Moving forward by looking back
There certainly has to be a slicker, more sophisticated way to do this, but damned if I know what it is. In the same category as "dance with the one who brung you" is "proceed as you always have done." In my case, that has always been trying to be straightforward with our readers.
As I have noted ("Page Two: Lost Horizon," Jan. 20), in November of last year I suffered from congestive heart failure. Following this event, I sustained a wound on the bottom of my foot that was unrelated but needed treatment. The plan was to prevent the wound from becoming infected; unfortunately this wasn't successful. Not only the wound, but the bone, became infected.
As a result of this infection, I had my big toe amputated six weeks ago. This experience meant six weeks of near immobilization for me, since no weight could be put on that foot. Even before that, I had decided that my column "Page Two" would be on hiatus until I was ready to return to writing regularly.
Today I walked on both feet for the first time in a month and a half. Thus, this column.
"Page Two" will return slowly – maybe not exactly to what it used to be, but at least it will appear regularly. Ironically, this column initially appeared 20 years ago.
The first "Page Two":
"The idea of doing regular editorials is one of those we've kicked around since we first began planning the paper. It was never implemented because our biggest problem has always been space – too much copy and not enough room. Recently, however, we began to realize that the lack of space was perhaps the very best reason to finally begin running a column like this.
"Conversation is the only real constant here at the paper. Whenever you come by, wherever you turn, there are people talking, huddled in hallways, sprawled out in offices, arrayed down the stairs, standing outside, on the phone. Some of these talks are professional (selling ads, talking to photographers, hounding writers), some personal (love, war and gossip), but many are informational – ideas being tossed about, news being shared, opinions announced, suggestions offered, gossip. Understandably, there is no way to get every idea, every bit of information into the paper. The real problem comes when there is a subject that we care about, and think will be of interest to our readers, that gets shortchanged within the pages of the paper because we've spent so much time talking and thinking about it that it seems covered to us."
The above appeared under the first "Page Two" heading in a June 26, 1987 issue of the Chronicle.
The way forward this time is by looking back. "Page Two" has returned after the longest break it has ever taken. We will see what it becomes over time.