"He Never Acted Like He Was From 'The New York Times'"

Choire · 12/18/07 10:10AM

It's amazing how "He never acted like he was from The New York Times" seems to be a high sort of compliment you can pay a fella! That comes from today's obit of Douglas Kneeland in the Chicago Tribune; he was an editor at the Trib from '81 to '93, after spending 22 years at the NY Times. So reading this has a sense of: Oh, someone finally said it! This thing happens to some people—not all! Not at all all!—where their life's ambition is to work at the Times because it is The Top Of The Heap, and why not, people are ambitious, and obviously these people are often very smart and extremely skilled, and then they get there and they find out that in many ways it is just a job and has workplace issues just like any other workplace and then this slightly warped thing happens over some time as they think "Okay, so what now?" and "Is that all there is?" and they become a little hostile/defensive/wary/bossy?