This item originally appeared in the October 7, 2004 issue of The Tech Talk.
This is my first column. In my life. Ever. The experience is more daunting than I ever thought it would be.
Seriously, how many times have I read a column and thought, "I can do that?"
At least a million, I'm sure.
How many times more have I read a column and thought, "I can do that, and better?"
Now the time has come to show my stuff and I am not, as a matter of fact, doing anything better.
I am desperately trying to walk in the footsteps of those great columnists who have gone on before. I am cowering in the looming shadows of Dave Barry, Bootsie, Teddy Allen and Amber Miles.
These are big shoes to fill, my friends.
This column (and the looming shadows) has me trembling in my figurative boots. Figuratively, seeing as how I detest wearing shoes and ditch them as often as favorable walking surfaces allow.
And I am not really wearing boots.
Remember in "Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring," when the Fellowship is canoeing down that river, and they see the outrageously gigantic computer-designed guys with their hands up, as if to ward away the evil? Yeah, that's where I am.
Though this is technically my first column, we are now up to attempt No. 5. That's right, sports fans; there have been four shots and four misses by yours truly.
I tried to find a more "sportsy" way to say that. Unfortunately, I know nothing of sports.
I asked sports guru Josh Milton for a good way to say this column was my fifth attempt at something, my fifth because there were previously four failed attempts. He assured me that sounded fine.
When writing one's first column, it is imperative that one first finds the proper topic to form an opinion of.
This task, too, is more daunting than first perceived to be. A true columnist can write on a variety of topics covering everything from, but not limited to, world events to belly-button lint.
And everything in between.
Once a topic is chosen, the process is child's play from there. So I hear.
The Task Master, a.k.a. Nick Todaro, assured me a writer is allowed only one column about writer's block per career.
No pressure there. Thanks.
Unluckily for me, I was able to write the column about writer's block in seconds flat.
It was a beautiful work of sheer genius.
Printing it, however, would waste the one "freebie" of my career and thus doom me to eternal work and writing.
This is technically my debut into the world of columns. My first appearance with a little floating mug beside my words. First and last, I'm afraid.
One day soon the "powers that be" will realize what a horrible mistake they made in letting me have the freedom that a column, even on rotation, allows.
They will quietly call me into the Faulk Reading Room and summarily give me a severe beating with the copies of The Tech Talks of yore.
Broken and bleeding I will drag myself into The Tech Talk Office, clean out my desk and move to Iowa.
I hear it is like Heaven.
Sharon Moore is a junior journalism major from Natchitoches and serves as a news editor for The Tech Talk. E-mail comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.