Pressbox View: Interesting items accumulate over the years

My desk moved last week. This is no small deal.

My desk moved last week.

This is no small deal. When you've been with a company for 35 years and your desk has been in three locations during that time, moving to the fourth spot is a major change.

It's also major work. While cleaning my desk and adjacent work area has been a regular task these last 10 or so years, there is still an accumulation of ... stuff that only relocation seems to resolve.

So I spent hours last week sifting through papers and other items, throwing some away and keeping others.

Some things required no thought. That photo of my wife and I on a hike, Pacific Ocean in the background, went right back to the same spot on the desk it had in the previous location. Same for the pencil cup made by my oldest granddaughter more years ago than I can bear to calculate.


Most of the stuff was work-related and brought back memories of various kinds.

One item was a handwritten note from a reader, responding to my column about unbreakable sports records, listing some more that he put in that category. Duly noted and filed for future use.

There was a big stack of Pigskin Previews from this year and the past. They always make me think of the huge amount of work our team of sports writers puts in to produce that detailed football season preview special section.

How about a manila folder full of notes, by season for several years, of which schools and sports received photo coverage? One of our ways to check on ourselves that coverage is spread out fairly and systematically.

In flipping through a small pile of business cards, I paused at Darrell Thompson's, recalling the pleasant visit with him in August, my first since his days in the midst of his record-setting career with the Gophers.

Another card was that of Ryan Phelps. His website,, is a fantastic resource of high school sports standings, scores and schedules. Keeping standings for our area conferences has always been an important part of the job for us as a local newspaper; it's nice to have someone doing that statewide. I remember calling high schools to track down missing scores, in order to update area standings. Times have changed.

Another sign of the times was reflected in, of all things, a cap. A red cap with MSHSL on the crown. In 2012, our P-B sports department Twitter account became the 1,000th Twitter follower of John Millea of the Minnesota State High School League. Our entire staff got caps as a prize.

Not many years ago, Twitter didn't exist. Now, most of our staff members tweet regularly, sharing opinions and information instantly to hundreds of followers. It's one more tool that has made our connection with our readers stronger than ever.


By the way, if you are on Twitter and are into high school sports, you should be following Millea, who brings a strong journalistic background to his public relations role with the MSHSL.

I've always liked to save programs from MSHSL state tournaments, so I came across many. One I had to take a minute with was the 2001 boys basketball program. Kenyon-Wanamingo and coach Jerry Wieme, who I had known for more than 20 years, won the Class AA state championship, beating another area team — Hayfield — in the title game. It was one of the high-water marks for southeastern Minnesota high school basketball.

Then there was a document of several pages that was near the top of the piles. Notes from a class I took in November: stress management. I need to keep those where I will look at them and use them every day, especially in the next few weeks.

Moving is stressful, you know. But it can also bring back some pleasant memories.

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