Monday, June 21, 2010

adam pagnucco steps down from maryland politics watch

This morning, blogger Adam Pagnucco announced that he'll stop writing at Maryland Politics Watch:
So long as I have both a very demanding job and a very demanding blog, I cannot be the husband and father that my family deserves. So I have to choose. And right now, I am choosing the job that puts food on my son’s table. That, of course, is not the blog.

Some may wonder why I don’t simply “cut back.” It is not my nature to do anything without giving it 100% effort. I’m just not made that way and I can’t change.

Nearly four years ago, when Just Up The Pike was still very young, I got an e-mail from a guy in Forest Glen who'd transcribed a debate between then-County Council candidates Hans Riemer and Valerie Ervin on Channel 8. I didn't believe that anyone actually read this blog, let alone wanted to write for it, but I posted what he had anyway and went on with my life.

A few weeks later, Adam e-mailed me again with an entire post ruminating on the significance of the teachers' union on Montgomery County politics. It got eighteen comments. Then came another post, and another. If I wrote something, Adam backed me up with some research, sometimes unsolicited.

I wouldn't meet Adam until a year after I'd started publishing his work, but when we did it was like seeing an old friend. He told me I was the reason he'd started writing, but I came to look up to him as both a journalist and an activist. His knowledge of the inside baseball within our local and state government and ability to spin a good yarn lent Maryland politics an intriguing and almost glamorous air.

When I started planning my "Purple Line Diaries" series, I went to Adam for ideas. When offered my current job, I called Adam first to ask whether I should take it. Or, perhaps, Adam called me to say I'd been offered it. I don't remember. He had eyes and ears in many, many places.

Upon joining Maryland Politics Watch in 2007, Adam turned it from a diary of goings-on in Chevy Chase into the state's premier political blog, well-read both inside and out of the halls of power. Here in the Council Office Building, rarely does a day go by that I don't hear someone say, "Did you see what Adam just wrote?"

Adam's departure leaves a huge gap in the local blogosphere. I don't know anyone, and I mean anyone, who could work as hard and write as thoroughly and fairly as he did.

If blogging was Adam's hobby, I can only imagine what he's done at his day job. But I know he'll be a spectacular father. As the man said himself, he always puts in 100%.

1 comment:

Adam Pagnucco said...

Thanks Dan. None of this would have happened without your example.