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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

In My Own Words: Infamous


It’s all about perspective.

My employees see me as an overstressed workaholic.

My ex, God bless her soul, sees me as the “most compassionate person” she has ever known.

And on and on.

And they are all correct.

Last Friday, December 9, William Bulger plead the fifth on TV. Then newspapers and TV stations started calling our newspaper for comments. And Fox-25 asks if they can come by and do an interview with me, so I say, “Sure.” And I speak, I gave my opinion and the overall opinion of the editor’s of The Mass Media.

That angered some, and I’m sure they see me as a mean and evil person, and I’ll pay for it down the road, in one way or another.

Then, Monday night I’m at a friend’s house and briefly tell the story, and that I angered some. My friend turns to his other houseguests and says, “Mike is amazing, for a soft-spoken guy he always manages to get himself into the middle of these giant controversies. He was sued by Harvard, he interviewed Ralph Nader, and now he has the Bulger’s pissed at him.”

So I chat for awhile about my old friends at Harvard, which, by this time, is just a bitter, yet educational, memory, and I don’t dwell on more current experiences, such as the little encounter I outlined last week. My friend goes on to joke about the tape of the interview with Nader and how he can’t believe I taped over it …

(I have got to get around to writing that autobiography … and finishing my screenplay. Hmm…)

Anyway, we, as a newspaper, and I, as an individual, didn’t come out in favor of Bulger hanging around.

The actions we have taken gnaw at me.

I really don’t dislike William Bulger. Heck, I relate more to “Whitey” than to Billy. I’ve broken the law of the land many times, flirted with death and murder and every other ghastly thing you can imagine, so who am I to say William Bulger isn’t ethical enough to be the President of UMass?

I don’t have an answer for you, and I probably would have done the same thing in his shoes–but, then again, I’ll never be the president of anything.

I’m probably more of a Jesse James than a Jesse Jackson.

Yet, it’s way past deadline and the printer is waiting for the disk, and I have a full schedule of self-destructive behavior to get to, so I’ll finish this up with a few words, say goodbye, and wander off someplace else to die.

But, before I do, I want to say one thing, or amuse myself with one thought–why? Why do I get myself into crazy situations? Others, some less intelligent than I, see the same opportunities to do some of the things I do and decline, they wisely step aside.

But I take the full force of the storm upon my face. Why?

I remember standing in a storm, wind and rain and branches pelting me, lightning igniting trees only a dozen yards from my body, while I drunkenly shook my fist at the heavens, and shouted, “That’s not good enough! If you really want me–I’m right here, come and get me.” Meanwhile my friends had retreated to the porch and watched what they were sure, once again, would be my end.

Why not? Sure, I should have died a dozen times. Maybe in that motorcycle wreck, or in that bar fight, or during a hurricane… But, and here I’m getting a little reminiscent and philosophical, and I’m starting to believe my own crap–the memories are worth it.