Column: Wishing the best to the best of an unfair life
by Will Heath
Feb 03, 2010 | 1937 views |  1 comments | 11 11 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Life’s not fair.

That’s the one thing I’ve heard repeatedly this year, almost since it began. Is it fair for some people to have everything, and others to have nothing? For some people to be great at what they do and receive little attention, vs. the reprehensible people on “Jersey Shore,” who do nothing and receive all the attention?

It isn’t. Because life isn’t fair.

And I, for one, am glad it isn’t. Fair, I mean. If life were fair, you probably wouldn’t be reading this column right now.

Blessings, of course, aren’t fair. My family that has supported me continually as I have pursued this journey in the newspaper business hasn’t been “fair” — they’ve been better.

It certainly isn’t fair, of course, that I am married to the most wonderful woman in the world, going on four years. Why she chose me, I have no idea. Certainly not out of any sense of “fairness.”

And you’re going to have to help me, because her birthday is coming up (actually, it’s today) and I’m running out of good ideas for gifts.

How does one say “thank you,” I mean, to someone who’s been rising before sunrise and going to sleep well before the late newscast, working herself to exhaustion and receiving exactly $0.00 in compensation, for the promise of a better life down the road?

What’s the proper way to thank someone who puts up with all your faults, allows you to watch basketball when you want (er, most of the time) and doesn’t even mind sharing the bed with you and a 100-pound dog? And doesn’t complain (er, mostly) that too much of your life is devoted to work, that you can’t ever keep from bringing your work home and that, let’s face it, being a newspaper reporter can be a detestable job sometimes?

Is there a sufficient “thank-you” that exists for that?

Life isn’t easy for the spouse of someone whose work is always done in public. Personal things get said, and while it may be easy enough to shrug those things off yourself, other people — specifically, your family — may have a harder time forgiving.

Furthermore, this isn’t New York City. We live with the people this paper covers; we eat with them; we worship with them. There’s no such thing as “leaving work at work” in this job.

But somehow, I’ve been blessed with the perfect person to deal with what is, at times, a frustrating profession with little reward. She is, to paraphrase Juno Macguff, “the cheese to my macaroni.”

That’s remarkable. And it’s certainly not fair.

So, Happy Birthday, to the best part of me. I love you.

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