‘Remember … what herps here derps the world’

Cristina Herrera

After two years at The Daily Texan — two years of sitting in the basement until 2 a.m. and driving myself insane over all the mistakes we still made in the next day’s paper — I’ve come to the conclusion that you must be a bit mad to work down here.

That’s not to disparage the newspaper. When I see the dedication and amount of overtime this staff puts into their work, even with little or no pay, I can only describe it as insanity.

I know, I know. The paper still makes glaring mistakes and we seem like a bunch of pretentious idiots sometimes. Come visit the basement on a typical work day, though, and you’ll get a glimpse at the reporters who won’t stop until they find that one source, or the designers who must tweak the page until it’s just perfect.

Since spring 2009, I have had the pleasure of working with some of the finest editors, reporters and photographers in the nation. The talent that walks in and out of this basement still astounds me, and I am optimistic about the future of the paper. My coworkers are colorful and oftentimes hilarious. There is something about sitting in a basement for eight hours that brings people to bond over Antoine Dodson and make puns until we end up annoying each other.

We copy editors try our hardest, and then the next day, we still see mistakes, some glaring. But that’s the magic of the paper, and more so copy editing: We learn constantly. The paper provides endless learning for every person who has the courage to sign up and put in the effort. It all sounds cheesy, but it’s true.

Now it’s starting to hit me that I must move on from the paper, and to say that I’ll miss it would be an understatement. As much as I complain about the long hours, low pay and late nights, I would not trade any of that for a different job. Copy editing isn’t easy, and my staff put up with a lot when the nights took a turn for the worse, but I encourage anybody looking for something worthwhile to come join the staff next semester.

Don’t be shy — timidness kept me from signing up for the paper, but once I did, I did not regret it. Over the semesters, I’ve met friends, watched some of the biggest news stories of our lifetime unfold and witnessed the slow dying of print journalism. I think the Texan is evolving. I see the students who are making it transform and adapt, so I am not worried.

Remember, dear copy editors, journalists, media junkies and word lovers: What herps here derps the world. Or something like that.