I still hear the end of this song when it’s the end of an era. The final song on Death Cab for Cutie’s debut album, Something About Airplanes, just has an air of finality.
And it was the end of an era: I was leaving my very first real job. I was there roughly two years and nine months. It was a crazy time — crazy in a good way. It was a small newsroom and we’ve grown apart a little, but I can truly call some of those former coworkers friends.
I was legitimately sad when it sank in that I was leaving. But I didn’t want to be a reporter forever. At the time, my goal in life was to be a copy editor, but I figured I’d take a leadership role instead. I figured I’d stick around there a few years to help turn things around and then move on to maybe the daily paper in Richmond. That was my ulterior motive for living in Richmond and working in Hopewell. That and also my idea at the time that I shouldn’t live in town because not having the actions of city affect my daily life would remove any bias I had about anyone in the city. I was 25 and thought I knew things.
As my final days approached, I believe I made an entry that had a title pulled from this song: “I remember being inside something more than you.” Clearly what Ben Gibbard meant was different, but I felt like that in that newsroom sometimes, despite the camaraderie. I was going through the motions some days because it just wasn’t what I wanted out of journalism. After nearly three years, I figured I’d paid enough dues with my 780-square-mile beat of two counties, a junior college and a university. I had to escape that line of best fit. I was 25 and thought I knew things.
I vaguely insulted my boss when I put in my notice. I didn’t mean to; it was one of those moments when you’re talking and your brain is like WHY ARE YOU MAKING THOSE MOUTH NOISES? Almost exactly five years ago, I shot him a message to apologize for partially burning that bridge. I was 25 and thought I knew things.
Next: I don’t have an awful lot to say about weird Icelandic music.