Friday, May 9, 2008

E-mail story

Mike Hoover sent an e-mail to the metro editors yesterday, relating what he'd found out about a cat up a tree. It read, in part:

"The cat is down by trailer No. 98.
She, the cat is trying to get down.
She is screaming her head off. It is dehydrated and crying for help.
It has attracted our whole darn park. There are 30 trailers there all
together.
... I spoke with Lower Windsor Township Police Chief David Sterner. He said it is unsafe for police to climb the tree. With liability standards, fire department won't do handle the cat.
Sooner or later when the cat gets hungry enough, the cat will come down.
They can call a tree services with experience tree climbers. You don't know if the cat has rabies. Someone can get bit.
The cat is an animal. It has claws. It will come down eventually. He has never seen a cat skelton in a tree."

We all thought he'd practically written a cool story in that e-mail. After he tweaked it a bit, he came up with this.

It's not smashmouth journalism. It's not going to change the world. But it's a story with a nearly intractable conflict, told in a tone and voice that's appropriate for the subject matter. In other words, it' s a nice piece of work by Mike, something that has a place in each day's paper, and something we can learn from.