We’ve all left jobs. Sometimes it’s liberating, like you just can’t wait to leave. This is not one of those moments.
The first Florida State football game I ever covered in person was in Arlington, Texas: 2014’s opener against Oklahoma State. I was seated in the press box near this Bud Elliott guy who was more a name than a real flesh-and-blood human being to me. I bumped into Bud more and more as that season progressed. In the box, on the sideline, at pressers. And early in 2015, he called me up to extend an invitation to join Tomahawk Nation.
I still remember where I was when Bud asked me to join TN. You figure that kind of opportunity to be a once-in-a-lifetime kind of chance, and it really was. Realizing that makes walking away from it for another such opportunity all the more difficult.
But that’s why I’m writing this today. I’ve said my goodbyes to the TN staff, and I honestly wasn’t planning on running a piece like this. But when others brought it up, I took a humble look back and came to the decision that I just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to say, to all of you who’ve read my posts over the years, this very heartfelt response: thank you.
Thank you for enduring this FSU English major’s somewhat esoteric literary and pop-culture references. Thank you for your affirmations and, equally, your civil disagreements. Thank you for being a bigger part of my professional life than you could ever know. I told my TN colleagues that they’ve transcended the position of mere co-workers and really become family. And you’ve truly moved beyond the role of readers to become a community to me.
Bud, of course, has moved on, and now I am also turning the page to a new professional opportunity as well— he’s gone from boss to confidant and friend, and I’m forever grateful for our relationship, “business” calls that often begin with Xs and Os and typically conclude with laughter.
Okay, one more literary reference— I know, shameless. The great American poet Robert Frost once wrote that “Nothing gold can stay.” I’m pretty damn far from gold, but you get the idea. Alchemy aside, everything changes. But I know one thing: the passion of those maintaining the ship at Tomahawk Nation will never wane.
So to you, the reader, and to my enduring family at TN, again, I offer my most profound gratitude. You’ve helped me become the writer, and, more importantly, the person I am.