EDITOR’S NOTE: We are over the moon, beyond thrilled and excited to announce …. sound trumpets … Geezer Tribe is back on the Tillamook County Pioneer. One of the “original” columns on the Pioneer, Geezer World, which took a “hiatus” – tried out various other options and platforms, as we weren’t always on top of the “deadline.” You know how news is in the digital age — things happen, fast — and sometimes the days would get away from us. So – the Pioneer has gotten better about “deadlines” and dear Linda Shaffer has come to the conclusion that in the digital age – what’s a deadline? Please join me in cheering and welcoming back, The Geezer Tribe!
by Linda Shaffer
It’s only been twelve days since the year 2021 began and I’ve already missed a deadline. Friends, this is pathetic but in my defense I said I would write in the new year and that technically gives me 365 days to set deadlines for myself and miss them.
What’s a deadline anyway? If anyone on the planet knows exactly what it means, it should be me. I spent 35 years of my life living under one every day while I worked at weekly newspapers around the Northwest. It is true that most folks think it should be easy for weeklies to meet deadlines because they have a whole week to figure out what they must do and do it. Daily newspapers get all the credit for meeting deadlines but in truth there are daily deadlines on weeklies too. If you are getting confused it’s alright. I spent all those years feeling the same. There’s a certain kind of fear that comes with not meeting or nearly missing a deadline and I felt it many times. Sometimes I still do and find that I still don’t like that feeling of letting someone else, or myself down.
For the most part, I am a follower of rules and deadlines. Like most of you I was raised in a family where those things were valued. They were also enforced and that’s a whole other story. There are lots of deadlines in life. Last week I received the ‘Annual License Renewal Notice’. On the next line down it said: Tassi O’Neil (County Clerk). I believe they put the parentheses around ‘County Clerk’ because we might not remember who she is if we didn’t vote in November. She sends a notice every year to dog owners asking for them to send money to license their dogs. Cats are exempt. Lucky us, we only have to pay $10 a year to license Grover because he’s neutered and we’re old. However, if we miss the deadline of March 1, 2021, we will have a late fee which is $15 if you voluntarily pay late or $30 if ‘under enforcement’. I don’t know about you but that’s enough of a threat to get me to pay up on time.
During the holidays there were a wide variety of shipping deadlines from carriers and suppliers which caused me to send gifts of money to my beloveds early or not at all. I did order one present for my mom and I planned on a delay which did not happen so it arrived at her home before Thanksgiving. Deadlines aren’t always what they seem. Publisher’s Clearing House has about a million of them every year, or it seems that way to me. In fact, pretty much every deadline for exciting special offers which come in the mail or shout at us from television is THIS VERY MINUTE. You MUST RESPOND NOW! Some of these are so pushy and insistent that I throw them away IMMEDIATELY because I want the assurance of knowing I’m the boss of me.
Yes, there is a deadline for ‘Geezer Tribe’. It’s a column I started writing every week many years ago which was originally called ‘From the Publisher’. Then it turned into ‘Homefront’ and then to ‘Geezer World’ and finally Geezer Tribe. Through the years I have written about life at home, work and in the community. I also write about how we change as time goes by and how our world affects us. I write about shared experiences because at our ages there are a lot of them. The column was always published on Wednesdays and the deadline was always on Tuesday. When I retired from the newspaper and started publishing on the internet with the Tillamook County Pioneer the deadlines stayed the same. When I went on my own on Facebook with ‘Geezer Tribe’ I got semi-lazy and was often ill but those deadlines didn’t change, they just got broken. Having conquered those demons and rejoined the Tillamook County Pioneer I am writing this as a changed woman. Who knows just how long this streak of one will continue? Happy New Year my friends.