Don’t bury the lead

My tugboat man called last night.

When he’s near land, he tries to call at least once a day. I know he’s concerned about me being here alone and a phone call or an email eases his worry.

I spent about ten minutes blithely chatting away about my car that slipped a little on the wet streets because it was raining and everything else I did: went to the gym,  how I was planning the menus for my son/DIL’s visit and what kind of birthday cake the Angel Boy requested (chocolate), and how we were hoping the weather would be nice for them.

Screen Shot 2013-03-09 at 7.57.30 AM

When I stopped to take a breath,
he told me what was happening on the tug –they played cribbage,
he lost–he was tired and
going to sleep, and oh, by the way, the assignment was winding down and he’d be flying out in a couple of days.



What did you say? You let me chatter on for all that time and never stopped me to say you’re coming home? YOU BURIED THE LEAD? Who does that? You’re supposed to LEAD with the important part of the story. Geez”

“I was planning to, whenever you stopped talking.” he said. Oh SUH-NAP.

What every writer should know


Every writer, every journalist, EVERYONE knows that you never bury the lead!

Once upon a time, there was this thing that was made out of paper that had words printed on it. It was called a newspaper. People just like you and me read them every day to learn about the world around us. That was before television even, and well before the internet. Writers and journalists were a key element and held in high esteem. (This is MY story, right?)  Those of us who took journalism and writing classes in college learned the old adage: Never Bury The Lead.  In the pre-blog paper based publishing world, page space held a premium. All writers knew their magnificent five hundred word story might get hacked up on a busy news day. If the shortened version didn’t “have legs” on its own, the piece could be killed. That’s why news writers are concise.  The survival of their by-lines depended on it.

hisgirlfridayNothing like the good old days, am I right?

Our conversation would have taken an entirely different path if my tugboat man had started with “I’m coming home”.

Barring more delays (entirely possible), he’ll be here early next week!

Picture me spending that time finishing the spring cleaning, grocery shopping, and baking — oh, and planning what to wear to pick him up at the airport. I think it’s time for another new outfit to match my new and improved face,  don’t you?

Happy International Women’s Day and Happy Friday, everyone!

For your enjoyment,  another Cure song (of love and sadness) along with one of our favorite Bob Marley songs (of love and joy).


42 thoughts on “Don’t bury the lead

  1. MEN! They do that…the important stuff gets slipped in like and afterthought…if at all around here!
    I am happy for you! Sad for me; don’t be a stranger.Now that I am back on my feet,I can read you!


  2. Videos! Holy shitsnacks, Bat Man! Remember those? Oh, and how I crushed on Robert Smith back in the day. I did kiss my Cure poster that graced my wall, and I totally admit it without shame. LOL Glad your man is on his way to your arms again!


  3. Hooray for good news!

    I have to admit that I am guilty of burying the lead from time to time. I do it on purpose though. I like to save the good news for last, get through all the bad news and drudgery, and then have the shiny bit of goodness waiting at the end to lift everyone’s spirits. Unfortunately X, Y, and Z happened today, but so did A, B, and C! Isn’t that great?!

    I might do this in my writing a bit too, as a curveball to throw the reader off, a twist, a turn, a shift in plot, but I think that’s okay because I’ve never once said I was a journalist! 😛 I’m just the jester. The scribe takes care of the “news!” (Did you see that one coming?)


    • I did NOt see that coming, and you are lucky that your readers who love you are so very indulgent that they read every word til the very end. Usually people only read the first third of anything! I too am guilty of sometimes burying the lead, but when it’s something like what hubs did, I could never have the patience to wait to spill!

      On Fri, Mar 8, 2013 at 7:50 PM, Enchanted Seashells…Confessions of a Tugbo


  4. He got you! Hubby does this to me all the time. He knows I love to celebrate my birthday & Christmas. He will pretend he’s completely forgotten about them both (3 weeks apart) & then do a little something on the day. It’s been hard not to get all worked up about this for 16 years or say something. December 2011 he forgot my birthday & because I wasn’t saying anything (thinking he maybe had something big planned for late in the day), I didn’t realize until dinner time that he had forgotten! Then there was hell to pay!


  5. yeah for you (and him) he’s coming home early. Enjoy the time together and it’s ok he buried the lead. That’s a good one to bury 😉


  6. lol
    In the past, whenever I started reading a book, I would finish it. Then I could write a review saying the book was good or bad. However, as I get older, I have decided that I don’t have time to read bad books. So if the author has buried the lead somewhere beyond, say, the first 50 pages, I’m outta there!


  7. Love that black and white Cary Grant photo. And you are so right about the lead! Especially because sometimes folks click “Like” just based on that, and don’t even go to the blog post.


  8. Pingback: Burying the Lede. Again. |

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