There I was, in Target, shopping for baby wipes or Diet Coke or plug-ins when I received the text that was the final piece in a puzzle I had been attempting to solve over the last thirty-six hours.
It began when County Commissioner Ken Welch let slip on Wednesday that he would be making a major decision on Thursday. From there, my cell phone was put to good use, calling this elected official and that political consultant.
What was Welch up to?
One source said the decision could be “disruptive.” Another said it would likely trigger a special election.
Slowly, the pieces started to come together to reveal a picture: Welch is applying for executive director’s job at the Juvenile Welfare Board. That meant he was definitely not running for mayor of St. Petersburg in 2013. That meant, if he gets the job, he would have to give up his seat on the County Commission.
Big doings, indeed.
Checking out at Target, I thought I had all the time in the world to write the story. Sure, I had checked my notes against what Tampa Bay Times reporter Anna Phillips knew, but there was no way she had arrived at Welch-to-the-JWB, right?
Go put your boxers back on, new media guy, you’re up against a former New York Times reporter. Phillips could have written the movie times listing for the ol’ Gray Lady, but having worked at the Times and now the Tampa Bay Times means she is smarter than the average bear.
So she scooped me. Bad. On a story I thought I owned.
The reporter writing for print just beat the guy who can upload a blog post from his phone.
Oh well, on to the next story…