Hanging Up the Red Pen

I joined the What’s Up Yukon editorial team in late September 2012 and the first edition with

my name on the masthead was issue #300, dated October 4, 2012.

What followed were 33 months of continual employment, bringing me up to this issue, #436. This unbroken string of paycheques from the same outfit breaks my previous personal best by 21 months. But alas, #436 is my penultimate issue as the editor of our weekly arts and recreation newspaper.

It’s been an incredible run. Right now it is difficult to comprehend the amount I have learned about both being a writer and an editor, but in the weeks and months to come I suspect I will begin to gain perspective on my professional growth. What’s more easy to understand is the amount I have learned about my hometown, Whitehorse, and the Yukon as a whole.

I have learned that 284 species of birds have been recorded in the Yukon, that the “moose” building on Second Avenue is the most photographed structure in town, that the Whitehorse Big Band was formed in 1990, that Stephen and Rob Dunbar-Edge were the first gay couple to legally marry in the Yukon, that Honda Civics hold a lot of old newspapers, that Claire Ness will never be a lawyer, that the CIBC building in Dawson City was erected in 1901, that Whitehorse is a good town for pirates, that Michelle Emslie and I went to the same university, that there are a lot of good DVDs in the local library, that begonias can be used in pesto, that Matt Waugh and Stu Van Bibber know how to brew beer, that Alice and Arthur John got married in 1935, that Nicole Edwards dreamed of doing a duet with Kermit the Frog, that in 1963 over $160,000 of ore was stolen from a Yukon silver mine, that Ryan Dorward invented beer hockey, that Alex Van Bibber was a pretty good coffee date, that consuming wine while making moose stew is a Christmas necessity, that Yukoners take garage sales really seriously, that the John Tizya Centre in Old Crow is home to the oldest Whitefish fossil in North America, that Ken Bolton likes scotch, that Da Kų Nän Ts’étthèt means “Our House is Waking up the Land”, that Pascal St-Laurent and Marie-Maude Allard of the band Soire de Semaine moved to the Yukon a few days apart in 2003, and that a dingle bom is some sort of campfire cooking device — to name a small fraction of my acquired knowledge.

I’ve also learned that when someone asks what you do for a living, it’s kind of badass to casually answer, “I’m the editor of What’s Up Yukon, the local entertainment magazine.”

However, while I have immensely enjoyed my time here, in recent months it has become harder to ignore some of my other writing projects, which have sat patiently on the backburner for long enough.

I would like to extend my gratitude to Tammy and Mark Beese, who invited me to join their team back in September 2012, as well as my editorial co-workers — first Tamara Neely and then Meagan Deuling — who have made my job so fun and rewarding. And, of course, photographer Rick Massie and layout wizard Lesley Ord deserve huge thanks-yous too.

I wish What’s Up Yukon future success and am confi dent it will continue to thrive.

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