Monday, February 25, 2008

So That's Why They're Called "Roving" Reporters

If you felt a few windy breezes over the weekend they weren't necessarily caused by the weather. That draft was just as likely the whoosh created by the departure of several members of the local media.

First, there was the departure of Joe Melendez from the News-Press. Was it the tense atmosphere inside the walls of the newsroom at De la Guerra Plaza that caused him to say "no mas?" That's not what he attributed his departure to in an email to me last Friday.

My experience with the News-Press was not a terrible one, aside from the animosity that I felt at times from members of the local community as I simply tried to do my job.

My reasons for leaving are simple. Santa Barbara, despite its beauty and wonderful weather, does not appeal to me. Growing up outside of New York City, I prefer a faster moving pace of lifestyle. I'm 27 years old and want to see the rest of the world before I decide to settle. An opportunity to move to Europe has been given to me and I plan on taking it.

Up on TV Hill it was Regina Ruiz who is leaving town. After not having her contract renewed by KEYT, Regina has landed at the ABC affiliate in Las Vegas where she will be joining the news team.

Actually that's not a bad move for Regina going from the 122nd largest market in the country (Santa Barbara) to the 43rd largest market (Las Vegas).

And is morning weather guy Peter Kulevich on his way out of town? His position is being advertised on KEYT's website.

Word is that if he is indeed heading back to the California desert where he came here from it's because of a romantic relationship that awaits him there as opposed to an inability to pronounce "Salsipuedes."

The TV news departures are not limited to south county. Up in Santa Maria, Drew Sugars, who has anchored CBS affiliate KCOY's evening newscasts with his wife, Nerissa Sugars, is leaving. After having anchored at channel 12 for the last nine years, Sugars is getting out of TV news and joining the Santa Barbara Sheriffs Department where he will work on in-house media communications.

Joe Cortez, an assignment desk editor at KCOY, is going to appear on the next season of "Beauty and the Geek," which can be seen on the CW.

And after looking at that picture I think it's safe to say that he's one of the "geeks."
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After going down to Cabrillo Blvd to see the start of Saturday's stage of the Amgen Tour of California bike race, my daughter and I went over to the Starbucks on State and Cota street. While we were sitting there a guy comes into the store and starts asking for change for coffee. It struck me as kind of like someone walking into Saks 5th Ave. and asking the shoppers there for financial assistance in buying a new coat.

In fact, I've been approached by panhandlers so often lately while walking on lower State Street that I'm considering wearing a T-Shirt that says "Pedestrian Carries No Cash."