On Christmas Eve: No Easy Smiles

By nature — and by way of repeated exposure to the ugly side of seemingly pleasant things — newspaper writers reflexively gag whenever anyone speaks about his own good deeds. We are built to find the Botox behind the easy smiles, and we know most people will go to great lengths to hide the needles

This is the intro written by Scott Morgan, one of the editors of U.S. 1 Newspaper, on a “doing good deeds” roundup that he commissioned from various writers, including me. I thought he — and the others — were worth reading, so here is Scott’s intro and a link to the rest of the story, As written by Scott Morgan:

But here’s a secret most newspaper reporters would rather you not know: We are usually very nice people. We’re not cynical because we’re jerks, we’re cynical because we’re idealists. And this is not a kind world to idealists.

So what seems like a surly lot actually is one of the world’s most hopeful and heartbroken species. We believe in the possibility (if not the probability) of a better planet, but we never seem to tell you about it.

Maybe because we think you won’t believe us, or won’t trust us when we admit to doing something nice. More likely, we probably think we’re unwittingly doing something wrong, afraid we’ll find out that by championing Cause X, we’re inadvertently causing the decimation of every aquatic habitat on Earth. Or something.

At the risk of triggering some hydrological holocaust, I decided to turn the spotlight on myself and my cache of regular — and supremely lovely — writers and my editor, Continuing… as part of the annual Helping Hands issue…


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