Letter from New York
Tombers is the President of Intermat,
Inc., a consulting practice that specializes in the intersection
of media, technology and marketing. For two years, he produced
the Emmys on the Web and supervised web related activities for
the Academy, including for the 50th Anniversary year of the
Emmy Awards. In addition to its consulting engagements, Intermat
recently sold METEORS TALE, an unpublished novel by Michael
ORourke, to Animal Planet for development as a television
movie. Visit his
web site at http://www.intermat.tv
| End of One Year/Beginning Another
The first thing I want to say is that this year has gotten off
to a grand start! No bombs went off on the North American Continent.
I believe we all breathed a collective sigh of relief on Thursday
morning when it dawned without smoke.
But bombs did go off in other places. Baghdad had a blow up
and there was one in Indonesia. A series of flights were cancelled
or turned around or re-screened when they arrived. But as far
as we know, there was nothing to all of it.
While we have been holding our breath, the media has been pummeling
the world with their decisions on the great moments of 2003.
I have been working on sorting out the kinds of things that
were important to me as the year ended.
Most importantly, I think of the friends who are part of my
life, people like Chuck and Lois, who have been lovely friends
to me over the years, accepting me, accepting Tripp, accepting
all the twists and turns of my life yet the only time
I think I saw them was in New Orleans for a quick lunch at NATPE
a year ago.
There are friends like Alicia and Larry that we have managed
to see more frequently, including some major holidays. There
are friends like Tom, who has known me since high school; every
year we grab a reunion weekend somewhere. And, of course, there
is Christine who dated my college roommate. Neither of us knows
where he is but we found each other again after college and
have stayed close.
I find myself treasuring my storyteller friend Sarah who lives
now in New Mexico and will be coming to New York to perform
her stories at the United Nations. There is not a moment in
my life in which I have been conscious of being alive that Sarah
and her family have not been part of my life.
So as one year ends and another begins, its friends I find myself
saluting. The threads of our lives are people.
Downtown New York is springing back to life with a steady beat,
against a backdrop of sadness that wont go away. It will
never be the same nor should it be. Too much has happened but,
like London after the Blitz, it will heal and while those of
us alive that day still live, we will keep it alive, in our
memories and our hearts and will never stop thinking of it as
we watch the new be built where once the old stood.
Hudson and Claverack continue to grow; businesses come and businesses
go but most of all it all seems to be tracking upwards. A rumor
has spread that Starbucks is coming, surely a sign of growing
My sense of my Americanism has been tested this year by world
events I dont completely understand nor completely trust.
The talk of American Empire makes me uncomfortable while I seek
to comprehend the manner in we are strutting on the world stage
We have brought down a government, and are now faced with the
responsibility of rebuilding a country. We have trapped Saddam
Hussein but cant find Osama Bin Laden and he is
the one who started this all.
There have been a march of people who have walked off the stage
this year, from those I knew, if only a little, like Rod Roddy,
to John Ritter, to Art Cooper who was the editor of GQ when
my fashion sense was being formed by it.
But I have thankfully not suffered the loss this year of anyone
close. Our homes are safe, my partner is fine, the creek flows
smoothly and the sky and stars last night made the universe
seem a wonderful place.
It is people and places that hold us.
May all your people and places be safe in the coming year!