Control + Alt + Delete

PC users know that control + alt + delete is the universal command to restart your computer. And now my life needs a restart.

Time to reboot. Control + Alt + Delete.

This has been a long time coming. After years of struggling, we’ve come to the point that we have to start over. A series of setbacks, mistakes and a bit of bad luck have brought me to this point.

My house is a perfect metaphor for my life: It’s slowly falling apart and in a few months, the house will be gone. I don’t expect my life to be “gone,” but it will soon be radically altered. Goodbye house, goodbye marriage. Hello, bankruptcy.

This didn’t happen overnight, and rebuilding a life doesn’t happen overnight. But it happens nonetheless.

After a pretty good run as an editor for Knight Ridder newspapers, things went south. Newspaper circulation and ad revenues declined dramatically in the 2000s, and many media outlets (not just newspapers — TV and radio too) were forced to make radical staffing cuts. And guess who found himself on the chopping block? That happened after Knight Ridder ceased to exist, the result of combined revenue loss, competition from Internet sites, and unrealistic profit demands from institutional stock holders. Really, maintain a 20 percent profit margin in 2006? McClatchy acquired Knight Ridder, then sold off the less “desirable” papers in the chain. So in the course of a couple of months, the Akron Beacon Journal changed hands twice. Enter the new owner, who saw the books and realized he’d paid too much. And you know what that means: Chop, chop, chop.

And so I bounced from assignment to assignment, with some occasional gaps in between, picking up anything I could find in a mostly crappy economy. Our finances suffered, saving was wiped out, and the marriage suffered. There’s plenty of blame to go around for that, but my wife was accustomed to a certain level of comfort — not extravagant, but solidly middle-class — and that existence evaporated. Poof! Gone. She blamed me for that.

It finally reached the point that she said, “I can’t do this anymore.” Can’t argue much with that. Quite simply, we have grown apart over the last few years. We don’t have fun together; we don’t do much of anything together except squabble.

So, control + alt + delete.

Then a funny thing happened recently: Saw an opening for a copy editing job in Elyria, not too far up the road. Yesterday was my first day on the job (Talk about burying the lead!). And at one moment last night, I thought to myself, “I am among my people.”

The reboot is happening.

 

Christmas 2014

It was a lovely, low-key Christmas this year. Nothing big. Coupla gag gifts, much goofing around.

The debate: Tree with flash or without? Without has some tricky backlighting (and me with no fill light in front).

The debate: Tree with flash or without? Without flash has some tricky backlighting (and me with no fill light in front).

Matt and Lindsey on their best behavior. Sort of.

Matt and Lindsey on their best behavior. Sort of.

Something old, something new

Something old, something new

Grammy, Uncle John, Lindsey, Matt, DeAnne, and me (Princeton comma).

Grammy, Uncle John, Lindsey, Matt, DeAnne, and me (Princeton comma).

Seriously

Seriously

Mantle

Say no more

Say no more

tree2

Thanksgiving 2014

The gang is (almost) all here.

Three generations. Yeehaw!

 

Current edition of the Wilson/Siegle crew, minus sister Debbie's bunch (she's represented on the cellphone in John's hand). Pretty good, and lively, turnout

Current edition of the Wilson/Siegle crew, minus sister Debbie’s bunch (she’s represented on the cellphone in John’s hand). Pretty good, and lively, turnout

 

Say hello to our host, John W. Siegle II, aka Bone, aka Uncle Bone (don't ask!), the man in the green apron.

Say hello to our host, John W. Siegle II, aka Bone, aka Uncle Bone (don’t ask!), the man in the green apron.

Gotta do something about the flash shadows. Perhaps bounce the flash? But that would require effort. And geometry.

 Eric attempts to carve the bird with a butter knife


Eric attempts to carve the bird with a butter knife

 Cici and Tania

Cici and Tania

clowning Matt and Bobb

A bit of clowning around

 

Corn souffle

Corn??

 

Cousins chatting

Cousins discuss deep thoughts

 

Cousins playing 2

Dad and daughter

DeAnne and Derek

DeAnne and Derek 2

DeAnne, Eric, Bobb

DeDe and Matt

Derek and Jim

Eric's finger

Eric ruins another selfie

Grammy among the glasses

Amid the glass managerie

 

Grammy, Matt and Eric

Eric looks on jealously

 

I have the cards

Killer hand! Or not

 

L, me and M

Me and the kidlets

 

LD(minus glasses)M

DeAnne and the kidlets

 

Logan and Weas

Logan and wine connoisseur Uncle Weas-o

 

Logan wine

Wine connoisseur Logan

 

M and L in da hood

In da hood wit L and M

 

Matt and Uncle Jim

Uncle Jim instructs Matt on the engineering dynamics of model airplanes

 

Mo and Linz

Cousins MoMo and Linz

 

Mo, DeDe and Lindsey

MoMo, DeAnne and Linz

Photobomb!

Momo photobombs

Morgan photobombs this serious posing

 

Nat and Momo

Once again, Morgan hogs the camera

Peace out, yo

Linz getting all gangsta and (stuff)

 

Pie!

Pah!

 

plate o' goodies

Let the feasting begin!

Post-turkey coma 2

Food coma, Part I

Post-turkey coma

Food coma, Part II

 

Sweet potatoes and pecans

Tania and MoMo

Mommy Tania and Morgan. I don’t see any resemblance, do you?

 

 

Tom waving with Grammy

Tom and Grammy

 

Tom

Weas in prayer

Mike (aka Weas) in a moment of quiet contemplation

 

Yvonne

And here’s my baby sister, Yvonne.