I have to admit something. When I took the job of webmaster and director of corporate sponsorships for District 3, I knew I’d be very busy and that RodFrisco.com would suffer.
I didn’t think I’d flush it completely down the hole.
The lack of updates, especially of PIAA championships (which was always the original focus of this site), is inexcusable. While it’s true that I spend oodles of necessary time on the District 3 website (keeping up with the breadth of updates and changes is more time-consuming than one might imagine) and what’s left is generally spent being a parent (albeit part-time, thanks to someone’s selfish decision), there is really no excuse for letting the site lapse.
For that, I apologize greatly to those who, starting in 2010, had come to this site on a regular basis to enhance their knowledge of PIAA championships. Frankly, I’ve let you down and I’ve let myself down.
Over the last few months, I’ve struggled about what to do about this site. My original vision of this site – a one-stop place for Pennsylvania high school sports fans of all persuasions to find sports news and championship information – has long since faded. I can honestly say the primary culprit is time, but it is also a significant shift in personal direction.
I have laughingly referred to my 2009 decision to leave the Patriot-News via buyout as “semi-retirement,” although I knew my RodFrisco.com project would keep me as busy as my work at the Patriot-News would … for far less compensation. I wasn’t crazy about leaving the money behind, but I was even less crazy about not being able to watch and have limited contact with my daughters during their high school years. I had lost way, way too many moments after my ex-wife and I separated in 2002, and I simply wasn’t going to let the remaining years pass the same way. Thus, the decision.
But along the way, I found out something that surprised me: I really didn’t miss newspaper reporting. At all. Considering that reporting is all I have done since the age of 16 and I absolutely loved the job right up to the day I signed the buyout papers, that is an astounding admission.
I still miss the cameraderie with colleagues, very much so. But in all honesty, that’s about it. I’ve had occasion to freelance along the way, and I have to admit that it has become tougher and tougher to gin up the mental energy necessary to become a reporter again. In short, I really am semi-retired now in that sense.
But I still retain a deep passion for high school sports. The difference now is that I’m working the field from the administrative side instead of the media side, and I absolutely love it. I love what I’m doing for District 3 and what I do on occasion for the PIAA headquarters (technically, I am a PIAA employee and not a District 3 employee because PIAA is the legal entity that encompasses all districts). So I am quite comfortable in my post-newspaper world.
But . . .
I am quite angry that I allowed this site to flop. Really, I can’t allow that to stand. It’s too much of a personal embarrassment. So I’ve finally come to a decision.
I will not let the site simply stand in place as I have since the start of the school year. Really, is there any point in having a site that never changes? Of course not.
So, what I will do is this: I will trim the site down to something that is workable for the reduced amount of time I have to commit to it.
Going forward, I will provide links to PIAA championship brackets, events and news; those really don’t take up a great deal of time, although my District 3 work obviously is the priority. Where possible, I will attend and recap PIAA championships and Board of Directors meetings. While I will do limited writing, I will always strive to provide immediate news on the actions taken by PIAA (and by extension, state government). Those actions affect every athlete and member school in the state and sometimes directly affect the parents of athletes (I can attest to that!)
Also, I will commit to upgrading my PIAA championship records and keeping them current. One of my goals with RodFrisco.com was to become the repository of PIAA championship histories and records because, well, I’m quite the geek when it comes to that. But those records and history have fallen into disrepair as well. Time to get them up to speed and all shined up again.
I will post only occasionally because the time to write on a daily basis is the one thing that has been wiped out by my job. Also, the platform that I used to cover events live (Cover It Live) has gone from a free service to a very expensive pay service. So I will not be doing live, interactive chats from PIAA events. In addition, PIAA now has a live blogging policy in place that basically requires any blogger to pay a fee to do real-time updates (no, there is no employee discount).
Again, I apologize to those who had become loyal readers; your loyalty was not rewarded. But here’s to giving it another, if downsized, go.