Janine Kritschgau–I used to be very agitated with students for not supporting our newspaper in its earlier form: The Blöphish. We started out this year with three seniors, a terrible website, and an extremely uninterested Student Body. I took it kind of personally, to be honest. I was so excited about the activity that I wrote my first article for The Blöphish while in 8th grade, about the all school musical, The Music Man. So you can imagine my disappointment when I became an editor as a Junior and could finally see the reader stats on our website… yikes. But in the end, Spencer, Brian, and I have led you all into a little trap. You LOVE the Aardvark Dig (we’ve got 15,372 hits and counting). But guess what: we are still the same activity. We have the same sense of humor as we did on The Blöphish. The biggest thing that changed was our web design!
Spencer, Brian, and I learned a lot about marketing. People love the “new shiny thing,” which in this case was a new website advertised through tiny paper slips with a URL free of context. [In a classic High School fashion, we learned that if you aren’t being respected enough you need to disguise yourself as a “new shiny” version of yourself.]
Another big lesson I’ve learned is that it’s ok to share a controversial opinion, even if people will react negatively to it. Various times I have found myself in situations where people have disagreed with me. But so what? You can’t always please everybody, and you can’t control how people interpret satirical writing. As for the ideas I aim to express, I’d rather share my opinion and have people be angry with me for it than to sacrifice my authenticity.
In any case, thank you all for your support this year. It has been my pleasure to watch interest in this activity grow. Although I am saddened to leave this behind after four years of continuous work, I truly believe that next years’ editors, Patrick McVee and Abe Asher, will do a wonderful job.