Woe the editor in charge of calendar listings.
Nothing riles up the public’s collective consciousness like the seemingly innocuous free calendar or event listings newspapers across the nation print. I could print two weeks worth of Sarah Palin’s tweets and still wouldn’t get the angry response I do as when a calendar listing is incorrect, has ceased to occur, or God forbid, been inadvertently omitted.
In regards to a somewhat nasty email essentially calling for my shaved head on a platter, let’s take a moment to address why snafus occur.
Issue No. 1 — Email overload
I deal with approximately 50 to 75 emails per day requesting items be placed in the free calendar listings, in addition to requests for story coverage. As such, this eats up a large portion of my limited time. Because of the nature of listings, some items will not make the cut; some items don’t include all the proper intel about time, date, place or event information; some items are not at all related to the entertainment world. Unfortunately, chances are I cannot give you a handcrafted response saying when and where your listing will appear. (Solution: Email your listing far enough in advance that I don’t have to scramble to squeeze it in last minute.)
Issue No. 2 — The ongoing event
This has proven to be the most common complaint I receive — “You ran this event but it’s not happening anymore.”
Many businesses request their band/class/lecture/underwater basket weaving program be reprinted in the same space at the same time each week. The problem arises when said business fails to contact us stating its band/class/lecture/underwater basket weaving program is no longer taking place. So six months later, the event is still running, resulting in the nasty email from Joe Public demanding my shaved head on the platter for running an event that is no longer occurring because the business failed to let us know its band/class/lecture/underwater basket weaving program has since been canceled. (Solution No. 1: Utilize the phone number and call the establishment to check on its band/class/lecture/underwater basket weaving program. Solution No. 2: Business owners, let us know when you cancel your event.)
Issue No. 3 — The carbon-based life form
I am but one fallible human in charge of three sections — Food, Latitude 65 and Sundays. If I was anything else, my name would be Wolverine. (Solution: Bond adamantium to my skeletal system and become superhuman, but that seems a bit extreme.)
Contact Features Editor Gary Black at 459-7504, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @FDNMfeatures.