Beyond the Fold: February 8
It can be somewhat dreadful to do an issue for a holiday such as Valentine's Day, where the same stories can creep up year after year and the topics seem like they've all been done before.
This is especially true with February's day of love, which sparks as many jilted singles events as ones for lovers.
That's why I thought our section came out so well - a bit lovey-dovey, but not so mushy or sweet that it would make you sick. Be sure to check out Brooke Williams' excellent two-page spread on date ideas and other great stories on being dumped, online dating and dressing up for a hot date.
I did this short, how-to guide on speed dating, which most already are familiar with. You sign up for an event through a website, meet at a hip locale and talk for a short time with a bunch of other singles, round-robin style.
I had wanted to register for an event and then describe my experience, which some journalists have done in the past. After much discussion, however, my editors and I balked at the last minute because of journalistic concerns.
The problems were these. If I go as a reporter, announced beforehand, I won't get the full effect of the experience. Most, myself included, would be a bit more guarded. On the other hand, if I go in secret as a reporter, the people who paid to be there get one less "real" date.
Now, though, I'm not sure that going as regular Joe and writing about it in print would've been shady. I think that if I went in with an open mind - I'm single and interested in dating - I could've written honestly about what I went through. If I followed up with someone else, I would've written about that and told the person I met what I do for a living.
It's a fine line. Maybe we'll feel differently next year.