Wick Communications

What’s in your file drawer?

In Ideas on 20 May 2011 at 6:25 am

To the left and below my computer here is a file drawer that I rarely open. Even without looking I know it is so full I probably couldn’t add to it if my life depended on it. Wonder what’s in there?

Well, let’s see.  Because we work on the California coast, there are files on erosion, land-use battles and the construction of the largest employer in town, the Ritz-Carlton. The files under letter “H” look interesting: “Healthy Communities,” “High School Apologies,” “History,” “Holy Ghost,” “Hookers” and “Housing.” There are files that mention lawsuits, one of those dating back more than a decade, and stuff related to employment with Wick Communications. The biggest file is labeled simply “Park.” It contains documentation about a long-dead plan to develop public parkland at the entrance to town.

I’m reasonably certain I could chuck three-fourths of what’s in the file drawer. The Internet has reduced the need to hang on to paper documents. Many court filings can be found online, and the same is true for many government agendas and minutes. You may still maintain your trusty Rolodex, but I bet you could get most of those once-prized numbers with a few taps of the keyboard. …

That said, I’m also certain there are some interesting nuggets lurking in that file drawer I rarely open. One of the lingering complaints about newspapers is that we often fail to follow up. Things that are big news for weeks can go unmentioned thereafter. Whatever happened to that priest who was arrested for assault? What is to become of that vacant parkland now? What, pray tell, is in that “Holy Ghost” file?

I resolve to go through that file drawer and recycle anything that seems archaic and no longer important from this vantage. And I will also look for things we can revisit. Why don’t you do the same?

— Clay


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