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Editor's column: Now this is stress

August 7, 2010
By Per Peterson

I'm used to stress. Being an editor of a daily newspaper, there's no hiding from it. It's there when I'm in my office and it follows me home.

When you work at a newspaper, you deal with scanners constantly going off, changing weather, people either because they didn't get their paper on a particular day, or because of a lack of coverage, or because of an opinion that might have appeared on a certain Page 4A. And those are just the phone calls. People won't hesitate to do the same thing in public. But that's cool. Everyone has their own things to say about every newspaper, whether it's their paper or not.

This weekend, however, I'm dealing with a whole new level of stress, the kind that makes beating deadline on Election Night seem like a walk in the park. I'm in charge of throwing a birthday party for an 8-year-old girl. As a parent, I want my daughter to have a birthday to remember. As a grown man, planning a wedding for 450 people would be less challenging.

My daughter's invitation list is a bit shorter -just a couple of friends. But that doesn't make it any easier. Ideally, all my problems could've been solved if I'd have gotten those RSVPs back from Selena and Miley. But since I have yet to hear back from the two Nickelodeon teeny-boppers, I've decided to cancel the portable stage and sound system.

But that leaves me with some holes to fill.

I brainstormed a number of things for the girls to do tonight, things that while they might not seem would be up an 8-year-old girl's alley, could grow on her if given a chance. Sure, the girls can play board games, maybe a little Twister, or work their magic with the Barbies, but there's also plenty of things to watch on TV, especially since Nickelodeon, for some reason unbeknownst to me, airs the must-see stuff after 10 p.m. Someone tell me what happened to kids watching TV on Saturday mornings.

When I was a kid, primetime meant 9 in the a.m. Then again, when I was a kid the Celtics had one player on the team who could dunk.

Speaking of hoops, I got a taped copy of "The Decision" that recently aired and I'm thinking that could really pay off tonight. "The Decision," if you recall, was ESPN's one-hour suck-up-fest to LeBron James, who on that night a few weeks ago let everyone know where he wants to continue his basketball career.

The girls will love it.

I also have all the Jackass movies ever made. Alone, those can kill about 8 hours or so. Maybe after, the girls can make their own version.

We could watch some Brett Favre clips. I'm sure if we scan the channels long enough we're bound to come across some kind of tribute to him. If nothing else, it will get the girls ready for football season.

I'm probably overreacting and worrying for no reason. The best-laid plans sometimes aren't even put to use.



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