HNC Home Page
News Business Arts & Life Sports Opinion Calendar Archive About Us
beginnings and endings: The Eagles end their American tour by performing the first-ever concert at Rio Tinto in Sandy. Click Arts&Life index for a link to story. / Photo by Ben Hansen, special contributor

Today's word on journalism

May 12, 2009

The Last WORD

The Fat Lady Sings, Off-Key, Drools

At about this time every year, like the swallows to Capistrano or the buzzards to Hinckley, Ohio, the WORD migrates to its summer musing grounds at the sanitarium —St. Mumbles Home for the Terminally Verbose.

The reason is clear, and never moreso than as this season —the WORD's 13th —peters out.

It's been a fraught year of high palaver and eye-popping transition, both good and not-so-much. An interminable presidential campaign saga finally did end, and in extraordinary and historic fashion. Meanwhile, the bottom and everything that's below the bottom fell out of the economy, with families, homes, entire industries and —of particular interest to WORDsters and the civic-minded —dozens of daily newspapers ("I don't so much mind that newspapers are dying--it's watching them commit suicide that pisses me off." --Molly Ivins). . . all evaporating. What replaces them, from the individual to the institutional to the societal? Are we looking at a future of in-depth Tweeting?

As any newsperson or firehorse knows, it's hard to turn your back on day-to-day catastrophe --we just have to look at the car wreck. But even the most deranged and driven need a rest. As philosopher Lilly Tomlin once observed, "No matter how cynical you become, it's never enough to keep up."

So this morning, as a near-frost hovered over northern Utah, the unmarked van pulled into the driveway and the gentle, soft-spoken men in the white coats rolled the WORD out of bed and into a straitjacket for the usual summer trip to St. Mumbles, where the blathering one will be assigned a hammock and fed soothing, healthy foods --like tapioca, dog biscuits and salmon --while recharging the essential muscles of cynicism, outrage, sarcasm, social engagement and high-mindedness, in preparation for the next edition.
Summer well, friends.

Speak up! Comment on the WORD at


Feedback and suggestions--printable and otherwise--always welcome. "There are no false opinions."

Eagles break new ground
Rio Tinto is a virgin no more . . . thanks to Joe Walsh and company. Saturday night, the Eagles performed the first-ever concert at the Rio Tinto Stadium in Sandy. / By Ben Hansen, special contributor

Sunrise Cyclery aims to get Logan biking for health, environment
With gas prices continually rising, biking seems like a wise alternative to driving, especially given the recent trends toward a greener lifestyle. / By Blaine Adams

Hair today, gone tomorrow: Students make the cut for a good cause
From having hair to the middle of the back cut up to your ears. That's what happened when Utah State University students decided to donate their hair for Aggie Locks; a service project April 9. / By Kenzie Lawlor

New Century Scholarships: Getting a head start on education pays off
The Utah Legislature is awarding high school students with in-state scholarships for showing academic success by earning associate's degrees while still in high school. Cassidy Hall graduated high school just one year ago and has just finished her junior year of college at Utah State University. / By Shannon Ballard

A look inside sorority life
When most people think of sorority girls, the thoughts of short skirts, parties, and hunky frat boys cross the mind, but what most people do not realize is that sororities are so much more than what meets the eye. / By Shaelee Barker

Can the Internet kill the radio star?
In a time when traditional media providers are constantly evolving, and in most cases, constantly struggling to try and stay afloat amidst the growing popularity of the worldwide web, Mike Carver believes there is reason to be positive about the future of radio. / By Dan Fawson

The most open of houses welcomes friends and those in need
It's Sunday afternoon at the Martin place. The scent of bacon wafts through the apartment's cozy chambers while siblings and friends gather tightly at the dining room table, hovering over their strategy game. Two men have retreated to the living room's cushy couches for an impromptu guitar jam session. / By Kelly Greenwood

Older generation getting hip to Facebook
The older generation is being transformed. They are a generation that has witnessed all of the technological advances but haven't grown accustom to the advances, until now. / By Matt Stice

Why Sound shakes up Logan's music scene
Picture Logan's nightlife. There's bowling, the Fun Park and too many restaurants. Oh, and don't forget Logan's unique music scene. / By Adam Christensen

Resident assistants enjoy perks of campus life -- and get paid
Kayla Harris has the good life. She wakes up in the morning, leaves for her class a mere 10 minutes before it starts, eats at the Marketplace, free of charge, then returns to her apartment on-campus to prepare treats, paid for by the university, for the students in her building. / By Sterling Bo Winn

Korean students at USU ponder duty of military service in home country
Finals. Girlfriend. Summer housing. Mandatory military service. These are the things that have been on Min Taek Seo's mind these days, whether he likes it or not. / By Jason Cutler

Learning while black: The USU experience
"I know it's had an effect because we are creatures of observation and you can't help notice what someone looks like. If anything, it's motivated me to be better," said Black Student Union (BSU) President Paris Thomas. / By Dexter Summers

Las Vegas schools struggle with how to deal with bullies
Hazing isn't new to Clark County School District, according to Judy Wells, a student advocate for protecting against bullying, teasing, hazing and initiations. The district claims to have a "Zero Tolerance Policy" on bullying, teasing and hazing. The problem is students and staff alike don't know how to handle the intimidation issue. / By Leavitt Wells

Logan's music lovers say why not, flock to Why Sound
After booking bands from Austria, Japan and Canada during its first year, Why Sound is feeling pretty good about how things have shaped out for their unique business. It's the only music venue in Cache Valley, and it all started on the East Coast. / By Ty Mortensen

How to frame a picture so you'll still like it tomorrow
The artwork you display in your home can have a big influence on the atmosphere within your household and make your home your own. How you display this artwork is also very important. Framing can be an expensive process, so you want to make the right decision the first time. Picking the right frame is important and can take some time, so here are a few tips on getting it right the first time. / By Alice Bailey

Aggies, here's how to house-hunt like a pro
For a lot of incoming USU freshmen, college can be quite an adjustment. Physically, socially and mentally, your world changes at the very moment you wave good-bye to Mom and Dad. With all the changes you encounter in your college years, there is one thing you should be able to count on—home. That is, a home away from home. / By Kelly Greenwood

Meth addiction in Cache Valley: Overcoming 'Satan's drug'
When Mindie talks about how her life used to be, it sounds almost idyllic. She would stay up all night talking with friends, she had few responsibilities and she had plenty of energy to get things done. Surprisingly, the life she is describing was one of a meth addict and it wasn't idyllic. In fact, it was horrible. / By Candice Mattson

Hyrum's city museum steps you back to times past
When Matt McBride was younger he would visit his grandparents in Hyrum. He helped his grandfather build a fort. Cutting pieces of wood and putting them together became a part of his summer and also a tie he shared with his grandfather. Now, as docent, or museum lecturer and guide, Matt hopes to help those who visit the museum feel connected with the past and have their own ties to history. / By Caresa Alexander

Making the grade to become a cop
Nick Nessen didn't want to be a cop as a kid. He didn't even have a close family friend that was a police officer and influenced him so deeply he wanted to be just like that friend. So what made him want to become a peace officer? / By Aaron Mecham

Benefits of vegan diet cited by former meat eaters
When Candice Mattson decided to go vegan, she said she did it because it has the potential to help every living being on the planet. / By Rebecca Hansen

Plans for Lewiston's 4th of July celebration are well under way
Horse sense, home-runs, history, and home cookin' -- Lewiston is well known for its annual Fourth of July "hoorah." / By Natalie Buckley

Key to getting the right internship: Start early
Tommy Marcheschi started looking for internships at the start of his junior year at USU. Now Marcheschi's work has paid off. After he graduates with a master's degree in accounting this May, he will fly to Munich to spend the summer in his second internship with Deloitte, a financial services firm. Deloitte is one of the "big four" firms in the industry, he said. / By Brendon Butler

Monster Circus a rocker's Vegas
Have you ever been to a rock 'n' roll circus before? If you are planning a trip to Las Vegas in the next couple of months, you will definitely want to figure this into your plans. / By Ben Hansen, special contributor

Queensryche cleans out the archives, live
Year after year, loyal Queensryche fans have attended shows with the fantasy of hearing some of the older, more obscure material from the bands early days. With 12 studio albums, 20 million albums sold, and almost 30 years behind them, the chances seemed remote. What the band delivered at the Depot club this week was beyond any fan's wildest expectations. / By Ben Hansen, special contributor

Copyright 1997-2009 Utah State University Department of Journalism & Communication, Logan UT 84322, (435) 797-3292
Best viewed 800 x 600.