by Travis Mateer
A caesar salad with EXTRA anchovies sure does sound good, I thought to myself as I strolled into a nice downtown location to treat myself to lunch.
I had just come from talking with a University newspaper editor, then a University police officer, so I was basking in that post-info-sharing glow I get when talking well-deserved shit on cowardly jurisdictions forcing unpaid people like me to do their job for them.
My train of thinking suddenly derailed when I saw the puffy face of a conniving media player, pictured above, who allowed local reporters to show up to a locked workplace on September 11th, 2018, because that’s the classy way to inform a community you’ve sold out an information asset to corporate interests.
Instead of a caesar salad I quickly recognized that the universe had just given me the MOST AMAZING birthday gift, and all I had to do was open my mouth in proximity to this influencer in order to receive it.
“Are you Matt Gibson?” I asked. “Yes I am.” He replied. “I thought so, I just lost my appetite and you’re the reason why.”
I proceeded to ask Gibson if he was familiar with the name Sean Stevenson. No, he said, he was not. Well, now he is.
I told Matt Gibson that this Missoula community is less informed and, therefore, less safe because of him, and as I said this, I pointed my finger at him.
Knowing how dangerously skittish these influencers can be, I kept my chat with Matt short, but upon leaving I wasn’t sure if this poor rich man knew who he just had the pleasure of talking to, so I paused my exit and let him know VERY LOUDLY that my name was TRAVIS MATEER.
Then I left.
After enjoying this birthday gift I found out (from a former Indy reporter) that some other former Indy reporters have finally gone live with THE PULSE. Here’s something from just four days ago. What nice timing!
A few weeks ago, at a small fundraising event for The Pulp, a supporter lamented the loss of the Missoula Independent, the beloved weekly newspaper that unceremoniously closed in 2018.
“The Independent taught me how to be a Missoulian,” he said, recalling his first couple of years after moving here in the early 2000s.
What a great description of the Indy. Every week the paper revealed a Missoula a little more interesting and complicated, leaving you a little more attuned and connected. Its pages informed our thinking, our weekend plans, our votes. The Indy’s void still feels fresh, maybe because this fast-changing town has us craving an authenticity the paper reflected.
I’m as nostalgic as anyone. The Independent taught me how to be a reporter. Same for Erika Fredrickson, who spent more than a decade as the arts editor. Erika and I are launching The Pulp five years to the week after the paper’s abrupt closure to honor what was Montana’s only alt-weekly and to make clear where our roots lie.
After sending this new Missoula publication a warm, welcoming email, I turned on my recording equipment to capture the inspiration that Matt Gibson gave me at lunch. I’m telling you, that puffy-faced media man is a gift that just KEEPS ON GIVING!
And here’s the song to prove it:
Thanks for reading!