Does the flak trade have a masochistic desire to be disappointed and disheartened on a daily basis?
It acts as if it does.
Typically what happens is, the flak sends out one of those emails that goes to Everyone In The World.
It is perhaps offering expert comment on something that’s in the news, or else an explainer on an issue with which I wasn’t familiar.
Every once in a while, one of them catches my eye. I might actually be interested in that, I reply, to a flak who is already getting way too excited.
Tell me a little bit more about it and ask your expert for a pithy, punchy opinion and I’ll see where we go from there.
If you or your expert spend more than 10 minutes on this, you are overestimating my level of interest, or what I might be able to do with your work, I am careful to explain.
Days pass. The flak returns with a dissertation on said issue – which is by now old news – that is written in unusable legalese, having plainly been complianced to death.
When am I running this piece, asks the excited flak, grasping at straws with her fingernails. Never, is the truthful answer.
This has lately gotten so bad I’ve stopped showing an interest in anything remotely marginal because I’m embarrassed about how many people are going to pointlessly leap into action.
Ten minute job, tops, I said.