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March 23rd, 2016 ~ Vol. 85 No. 12
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Lisa tells it like it is
Crowsnest Pass Herald Front Page
LISA SYGUTEK
On Thursday two weeks ago my wonderful reporter Ezra informed me that he was going to Las Vegas on the following Tuesday for four days.

I am either the best boss in the world or the worst person in the world to myself because guess who had to take over his job for a week - yours truly.

So I donned my reporter’s cap and began my journey into the world of journalism. Well much to my dismay I missed by first assignment, council. Yikes, one of the more important subjects we cover and I missed it.

So I pulled my cap down a little tighter and put my nose to the grindstone.

My first event was the Blairmore Legion’s annual Easter Bonnet parade.

I can tell you that put a huge smile on my face. The beautiful people wearing their best Easter bonnets. I was even able to see a few individuals I was lucky enough to spend time with when my parents were in long term care.

On Friday I went to the CNP Skating Carnival. What a community we live in where we are blessed with such a wonderful avenue for children of all ages to learn to skate by long time coach Irene Fraser.

The older skaters were amazing. Stage presence, talent, beauty and skill. I took a photo of Sydney Dorge. It’s not an action photo but a photo of her just skating into a jump. She looks strong, athletic and beautiful. Isn’t that what we want for our daughters? To be strong, powerful and confident? Her photo took my breath away.

Now the little ones were adorable. Little guys dancing to the YMCA and then little Isabella Long comes out in her black hockey skates and pink tutu. I almost called my doctor to reverse my tubal ligation. I probably would if it meant I’d have a girl.

The grand concert took place with the symphony. The rich musical heritage in this community never fails to astound me. As a child I took piano lessons from both Mrs. Pinkney and Mrs. Costigan. I played the French horn in the symphony. There are times still today when I randomly sit at my piano and just play. I am blessed to have had the opportunity to study music and reach my Grade 12 level in piano.
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We now have Groves Music to add to the repertoire of music in the Pass. My littlest guy Quinn is learning to sing and play on my Dad’s guitar. Each week he comes home with a love of music and it makes my day.
On Saturday I went to a Ducks Unlimited fundraiser. Oh my goodness was that fun. Gambling, games and auctioning. I was in my height of glory, bidding for items along with 250 other people.

The amount of work this committee put in and the level of professionalism is amazing for a small community. The committee was recognized this year for its outstanding contribution winning the “Committee of the Year for Southern Alberta.”

Last year we lost a long time member of our community Alan Martini. I loved Alan, he was part of the Pass Herald team for years as our accountant. The committee honoured him for his years of service to the organization and his ‘favourite’ niece spoke about his impact of their family and his impact on this community.

Overall it was a great week. When I started working at the Pass Herald 17 years ago I made a promise to myself that I would learn every facet of this business so that no employee could ever hold me hostage. I had watched a few during my mom’s tenure who were able to hold her over the proverbial barrel and I wanted no part of that.

I can do it all. Ads, sales, reporting, books, probably none of them great but I can do them.

Reporting was fun, I forgot how much fun. Since my parents got sick, I haven’t left my house much. This forced me out of my house and into the community I so love. It was fun. Do I want to do it all the time, no way, but for a bit I felt a part of the community on a bigger level.

The one sad thing this weekend was the death of Grant Procknow. Margaret was one of my mom’s best friends. She was with my mom just before she died. She looked after me when my mom was alive and continued to look after me after her death. She stepped in as a pseudo mother. My heart breaks for the family. Margaret and Grant were what I term an ‘old school couple’, those married people who actually like each other and wanted to spend all their time in each other’s company. My parents were like that. It’s a wonderful way to see marriage. After 46 years Margaret must now navigate this new chapter without her partner. She is blessed with a beautiful daughter, Kellie and granddaughter Darcy to help her though this terrible time. My thoughts and prayers are with them all.
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During the provincial hockey weekend I was able to spend some amazing time with my two youngest children, Aiden and Quinn. Keiran went separate with his father, as I had to take Quinn to his own play-off game. When you have four children quality time with one or just two is precious. I was able to spend that time with my boys as we drove a total of 7 hours crammed into the car. I kept the kids up late the night before and let them sleep in as we were leaving at night after Quinn’s game in Taber and I wanted someone to help watch for deer and help keep me awake. Aiden was ready for the challenge. As we got to the first light in Taber on our way out of town both were asleep. Regardless, I did get a lot of time with them that weekend. The amount of love I have for these souls I created never ceases to amaze me.

On a side note I went for a run on a range road in Provost upon which I was chased by a crazed cow. I tell you that cow had killer eyes. She chased me and as I was zig zagging down the path yelling, “I don’t really eat beef”, a farmer saved me from certain death.

Last but not least I can tell you all that I love my job. Every week our team and myself get to see the fruitions of our work. How many people can say that? Also, if you piss me off I will always have the last word. A wise man once told me that you should never get into a pissing match with someone who buys her ink by the barrel.

I can say we are truly like family. Buddy well he’s Buddy, he’s not always politically correct, but he’s 85 and I figure if you are still going as well as he is at 85 you can pretty much do whatever you like.

Mike Chambers is by far not only the best creator of ads, but the best friend a girl could ask for. We just don’t let him answer the phone.

Cierra left us and had a baby. We are doing the best we can until she comes back but I am happy to say that’s not too far away. She’s amazing at her job, the one job I actually hate. I take it personally when people tell me they don’t want to advertise or advertise in papers not part of our community. For that reason alone I’m no good at sales.

Betty Wamsley volunteers her time proofreading the paper each and every week. She’s old school having been in this industry longer than I’ve been alive. She’s saved my skin from libel a few times. Can’t trust Buddy, he’s been sued three times, and lost all three.

And Ezra, he’s ours too. Whenever he screws up he just tells me I’m beautiful and the best boss. How could I ever go without him? He’s part of our dysfunctional Pass Herald family.

Finally we have Taryn Wilson taking over my books. I’m good at a lot of things but accounting isn’t one of them. I have a human resources degree for a reason. If you need your books updated she’s the one to call. She’s saved my butt a few times.

So my thoughts are that I am lucky to live in this community and have beautiful kids and get up each day to a job I love. Is it easy owning your own business? Nope, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Quite frankly if I worked for someone else I’d probably get fired.
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March 23rd ~ Vol. 85 No. 12
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