Good evening folks! How are y’all feeling out there? I am just fine. As some of you may know, I spent yesterday in Washington, DC for the event to recognize the winners of the Black Press All Stars Award. It was a great day, but I was way too tired to throw up anything on here. That’s why I am hitting y’all now. To read my more official mini report on it, you can click here. But since this is a blog, I can exercise some literary free license and tell you what is on the mind.
First, I offer a special thanks to DC Livers for putting this all together. I know this had to be something else to get all lined up. I am just glad it all worked out. It was a thrilling day from the jump. With a group of people engaged in so many different aspects of Black media, there was no shortage of conversation topics. From an impromptu discussion of the future of Black news outlets, to an NPR fueled talk around micro and macro-economics and the Tea Party, it was a straight up iron sharpening iron kind of situation. Some were annoyed *smile* but overall it was a back and forth, jump in when you can kind of thing. It’s not often that a mention of Keynesian economics will get anything but blank stares from folks. Ha.
Secondly, (I just realized I left out my second point) this was a grand experience. I mean everything from our initial meet up at the National Press Club to the White House tour, to the lunch at B. Smiths. There is no way I would have believed anyone had they told me earlier this year that I would be part of a group touring a portion of the most famous building in the world. We saw the press conference room, and that long hallway the prez walks down towards the podium. Red carpet and all that. The down side is that, I have not a single picture. But I got a reason for that. (No, my phone ain’t die)
You see, once we entered through the check points, there were signs clear as day that said photos were not allowed. They had secret service posted in every room, and folks all around us did NOT have their phones out. They weren’t playing. The funny thing about it is, when you hear the two words secret service, it strikes some fear in you, and you immediately visualize a battalion of non-smiling, black suited and dark shade wearing individuals. Straight up Hugo Weaving status. The type that will hemm you up in an instant. These guys didn’t look at all like that, and most of them were smiling. They also acted as guides/curators, explaining what the historical significance of the items in the rooms, who owned them, the shortest presidential terms, etc. Jeopardy type stuff. I took my time walking through it, looking at everything I could. It was unreal.
After all of this, we went to the famous restaurant B. Smiths, where I had too many miniature biscuits. Can’t even lie. Ha. There, it turned from a luncheon to a Black media pow wow. People started trading stories, and ideas about social media approaches to build readerships. I had many a jewel dropped on me by those who have newspaper publishing and magazine experience. There is nothing like being around Black people doing things, actually out there making an impact. Coming into it from my angle as a primarily web-based writer, its great to hear other perspectives and approaches towards getting a message out there. While it is great to be recognized, its even better to be amongst those you can learn from. It can recharge you and re-motivate you all at once.
All in all, a great occurence. Today is exactly two months after I won the award. One would think that the glow would “wear off” No such thing has occured. So I wont ramble on and drop a hot 16(00) words, I will end it with this paragraph. I most of all, am grateful for the recognition, for my readers, for the connections, and for those I have touched. And with that.. I’m out. Peace!
-Marc W. Polite
Black Press Award Winner, Class of 2011
P.S.- I saw a print version of Politico when I went to the National Press Club. I thought it was online only.You learn something new everyday.