Unusual anniversary

Jo Francis
Thursday, April 2, 2020

It turns out to be a significant date for Jo Francis.

A calendar reminder has popped up informing me that #onthisday in, gulp, 1994 I started working for Printweek magazine.

Time flies, eh?

It did give me pause for thought. In what is now my official role as The Old Lady of Printweek I’ve reported on some utter shitshows in that period including mega-collapses in the shape of Paperlinx and Polestar, and a variety of serial dodgy geezers including Gary Dawson at Frisch Druck, the Walter Mitty of print Kevin Dunstall, and ‘book printer’ Neill Stuart Malcolm John (rearrange the order of those names however you like to suit the circumstances) who is probably skinning a new website as I type.

Of course nothing tops the absolute shitshow of all shitshows that we’re living through right now.

On the bright side, I’ve only burst into tears three times so far this morning, and one of those moist moments was looking at a comment trail about Prime Group’s quite brilliant achievements in doing something incredibly positive amid the direst of times for many of my industry contacts and their families.

What a boost! I’d also like to give a shout out to the many lovely Printweek readers who’ve sent us messages of thanks for, well, doing what we do during the past couple of weeks. It is very much appreciated.

Alongside “now wash your hands” the new mantra surely has to be “don’t worry about things you can’t control”, which is of course easier said than done amid current happenings.

A dear family friend used to take people of all ages and abilities hill walking – and indeed up some mountains. He really was a marvel in helping people achieve things they never would have thought possible. His sage advice was to “just keep putting one foot in front of the other”.

So. Onwards, upwards and let’s all try and put our best foot forward. It really is all we can do at the moment.

And here’s to the next, um, 26 years. Shriek!


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