From the Editor

From the EditorThe Accidental Tallahasseean

By Rosanne Dunkelberger

When a new Florida governor is elected, it’s a Tallahassee Magazine tradition to write a feature story that focuses on the first lady and the children, checking in to see how everybody is settling in at the mansion and enjoying the Capital City.

When Charlie Crist was sworn in Jan. 2 as the state’s 44th governor, he knocked that plan into a cocked hat. He is single, and probably is as familiar with our fair city as the rest of us. Like so many others over the years, he came here to attend Florida State University (though I have to admit, when a circa mid-1970s photo of him being crowned Homecoming Chief appeared in the Tallahassee Democrat, I had a hard time believing that dark-haired, mustachioed guy was our 44th governor), later served in the Legislature and has been a full-time state employee here since 1999.

But, I figured, it was certainly worth a story – albeit a somewhat different story than we have written in the past – and assigned Ed George to the task. He is in the communications consulting trade now but in a past life worked as a reporter of state politics. I couldn’t wait to see what Ed’s story would uncover. (I had to wait a good, long while. The new governor was caught up in special insurance sessions and the tragedy of Central Florida’s tornadoes, so this story came screaming in uncomfortably past deadline.) Ed never was able to pin down Crist for an interview, but I think the story he came up with by interviewing the folks who know him (in the business, it’s called a “write-around”) is full of interesting insights. But it’s too bad he didn’t get The Interview. I think it would have been the most civil conversation ever held. I’ve known Ed for decades and interviewed Crist myself when he was a candidate, and it is my firm belief that they are the two most polite, likable people on Earth.

Also be sure to read Triston Sanders’ story on sleep deprivation. It’s a subject that is near and dear. I spent years poking my husband at night to get him to quit snoring. Then he started poking me complaining about my snoring. We both ended up getting tested and both were diagnosed with sleep apnea. So now we have his-and-hers CPAP (continuous positive air pressure) machines on our bedside tables and are able to get restful sleep most nights.

Sleeping with a mask on and air blowing up your nose takes a little getting used to, but I think it has improved my quality of life. I never realized how restless and uncomfortable I used to be; I thought rolling over and waking up a few times a night was par for the course. Now, I prepare myself for sleep – a rather amusing sight, I’m sure, since it includes an eye covering, a nose mask and four pillows before I assume a mummy-like pose on my back – and remain in that position all night long.

I think you’ll find the Tallahassee Business Journal stories on our higher-education corridor very enlightening. The impact of these institutions is significant, even if – like me – you have no direct connection with them and can go months without getting over to that side of town.

(For those of you who read my weight-loss declaration in the last issue, I have yet to achieve any significant progress. I think a better goal will be “50 while I’m 50.” I appreciate all the kind words sent by readers and hope to report something inspirational by the next issue. If you’re traveling down the road, stick with it and do well. I know how hard it is and applaud your efforts – and hope to celebrate your success.)

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