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By: Melissa Griffiths on July 18, 2013 - 9:29pm - Add new comment

I could name many reasons for liking our new publisher, Rustan, but I would be lying if I didn't say a big factor was his decision to let me bring my dog to work. Is that selfish? Nah, I've had a lot of co-workers express happiness at having Beau the Dog in the office. I think this decision is indicative of a desire to foster job satisfaction and a community feel at the Empire. 

Why is having Beau the Dog at work positive?

By: Melissa Griffiths on July 10, 2013 - 6:47pm - Add new comment

I've worked many jobs over the last decade, a little more if you count slinging pizzas in high school or feeding animals and babysitting, and this is definitely the most interesting job. It also, as it turns out, best uses my skills and talents. It also allows me to sleep in late most days. 

I guess I've had jobs in the past that allowed me to pull in some of my talents in ways outside the scope of my job description, but it's super fun to get to do the occasional illustration for the paper. It's cool to be at my desk painting a little picture for my job.

By: Melissa Griffiths on July 2, 2013 - 3:48pm - Add new comment

Late this spring, when we were first having that summery weather, I decided to weed out and garden a patch in my back yard. I had helped my mom garden in the past and I've written an article or two (three, actually) about other people gardening, so I figured it was something I could handle.

After one day of grueling weeding and turning over of soil with a shovel, I had cleared about a quarter of the yard. Let's call it good.

By: Melissa Griffiths on June 25, 2013 - 12:59pm - Add new comment

The death toll from recent clothing factory disasters is high; more than 1,100 in the Bangladesh collapse, around 300 in the Karachi fire in Pakistan. When you look at the label of your clothing, where does it say it's made? 

Some of my clothing tags do say "Made in Bangladesh"  or "Made in China" and maybe "Made in Pakistan" — it makes me wonder if having affordable fashion is worth the conditions caused by our consumer demands. My Gap dress cost $40 on sale — but at what cost? 

By: Melissa Griffiths on June 18, 2013 - 1:21pm - Add new comment

In an open letter to Alaskans on the Choose Respect site (www.chooserespect.alaska.gov) Gov. Sean Parnell wrote, "In December of 2009, I pledged that Alaska would take every step necessary to stop the epidemic of domestic violence, sexual assault, and child sexual abuse in Alaska. Since then, we have witnessed more and more Alaskans finding the courage to speak, and the strength to act."

But respect is more than not hitting or raping a woman.

By: Melissa Griffiths on June 4, 2013 - 7:54pm - Add new comment

It managed to sneak up on me. This summer is my 10-year high school reunion and I'll be heading back down to Redmond, Ore. for the occasion.

My time in high school was wholly unremarkable. I managed to get through with minimal drama, negligible popularity and respectable grades, getting me into college and on with my life.

By: Melissa Griffiths on May 28, 2013 - 1:54pm - Add new comment

Six years ago today I disembarked a plane after a milk-run from Seattle and an early morning departure from Portland, Ore., two weeks after graduating from Willamette University in Salem, Ore., and happy to be leaving my parents' house in Redmond, Ore. — we can get along for a maximum of two weeks. Fresh off the plane, my friend Lauren Brooks took me to the Mendenhall Glacier. 

By: Melissa Griffiths on May 20, 2013 - 2:33pm - Add new comment

I had a Nancy Drew adventure today. Sort of. 

By: Melissa Griffiths on May 7, 2013 - 9:18am - Add new comment

You know those movies in which the whole premise is an underdog sports team overcoming the odds and the challenges to take home a win and everything is so heartfelt and you are supposed to feel inspired and motivated and overjoyed? Least. Favorite. Genre. Inspirational sports films? No thank you.

But it goes further than that. Inspirational dance movies? Nope. Inspirational films about teachers reaching inner-city students? Cringe. There is something about the saccharine and cliches that makes me want to barf. 

By: Melissa Griffiths on April 23, 2013 - 9:00am - Add new comment

Today we printed a Ketchikan Daily News editorial suggesting Sen. Pete Kelly's SB74, which would establish a University Building fund, like the Alaska Public Building fund, would be a great way to reduce expenses and debt for the State of Alaska. 

"Collecting rent from the departments is an important feature of the fund because the university will encourage better use of space..." Kelly is reported to have said in this editorial.

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