• 52°

Bidding farewell to a strange decade

2000. Graduated high school. Thought I was ready for the world. Couldn’t be slowed down. Started college. Had a 0.53 GPA my first semester.

2001. May not so much be ready for the world, or for college at least. Flirted with the idea of joining the Air Force Reserves. Took the ASVAB. Took the physical. Questions arose. Rethought things. Proved to be a good call. Went back to college. Worked in youth ministry. Took my first road trip. Met a girl through a prank phone call. 9/11 happened. Granddad died. Couple weeks later, my other granddad died. September was a bad month. Missed both funerals. Fell in love with that girl from the prank phone call.

2002. Married that girl from the prank phone call. Yeah, I was ready for the world. Left school. Started online classes. Took a full-time job. Didn’t work out. Took another full-time job. Didn’t work out. Not so much with the whole ready for the world thing. Got another full-time job at a state-ran psychiatric hospital. Interesting. Scary. Good insurance.

2003. Lost that girl from the prank phone call. Got depressed. Lost my dog. Lost my cat. Fractured my ankle. Lost another dog. Thought about writing a country song.

2004. Quit online classes. Quit the psych-hospital after a wrestling match with a homeless man. Insurance wasn’t that good. Went back to school. Floundered for a semester.

2005. Almost quit school. Didn’t know what to do with my life. Wrote an article for the school newspaper. Changed my life. Changed my major.

2006. More school. Simultaneous summer jobs at a restaurant, a retail store and campus security. Determination rediscovered.

2007. Graduated college…after seven years. Crazy. And expensive. Started a job in marketing at Baptist Health in Montgomery. Liked it. Kind of. Got in shape. Kind of. Missed newspaper work.

2008. Got an e-mail from something called The Demopolis Times. Said they had a sports editor opening. Not interested. Never heard of Demopolis. Interviewed anyway. Welcome to Demopolis.

2009. Looking over the last decade at something called The Demopolis Times. Right here. Right now.

Realizing it’s a long way from there to here, but the joy is in the journey. Ready for 2010?

Jeremy D. Smith is the sports editor of the Demopolis Times