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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Saturday, June 22, 2024

How Andy writes his columns

If you’re skimming this (which, you undoubtedly are), it most likely means you’re familiar with my Page Two columns. When reading my work on the esteemed Cardinal humor page, some of you probably think, “Wow, I would never put my creative ideas out in a newspaper so anyone could laugh at and criticize them. That’s wicked courageous.” Or maybe your internal dialogue more-so goes something like, “I can’t believe this loser thinks he’s funny.”

Either way, it might be helpful for all of you to understand the process involved with writing a column for Page Two. So, I have created this handy guide to get everyone on the same page (lol).

Every column has to begin with a concept. Whether it’s advertising all your friends for blind dates, speaking in the voice of a complete ignoramus or even explaining how believing in aliens is totally cool (just a few of my “better” ideas), a definitive purpose rests at the epicenter of every Page Two masterpiece. This one is no exception. 

The second step is to always start off with a lead I think will make readers chuckle, but is inevitably just a self-absorbed, only-inside-your-own-head-is-it-funny attempt to hopefully draw the audience into lasting for more than one sentence; it is a cheap, despicable ploy, boasting a success rate hovering right above guaranteed failure. For a pristine example, see the first paragraph.

Following the lead, I usually move to an awkward intermittent phase. This is normally the most starkly unfunny part of the entire piece. It’s at this point some people decide their time might be better spent watching bowling on ESPN2 or lurking the deep-net, looking for downloadable fetish porn they won’t even watch one time because they actually don’t have a weird thing for beekeepers. Literally nothing is worse than this. Please stay. 

Almost equally lurid is the vast, never-ending expanse otherwise known as the body of my columns. This multi-paragraph nightmare consistently procures some of the most pompous and vilely masturbatory writing imaginable—often shifting my focus, feel and tone without warning or merit. 

During this stint of literary purgatory, I will undoubtedly venture into some sort of personal anecdote or experience, which, let’s be honest, nobody else wants invading their brain. 

As I lie supine on my king-sized bed—snot drizzling down my far-past-five-o’clock-shadowed facial region, well into my third day of class-skipping sickness—typing these “instructions” into a comprehendible form, it occurs to me a lot of people probably don’t care about my process of writing a column for Page Two.

A lot of readers, I’m sure, find the whole process of how I write a column to be a bore. And for all of you, accept my apologies. 

This endeavor itself was a bit quixotic from the start. 

But, I suppose I have come this far, so I might as well finish this thing. The final step after the body (which you just experienced, if it wasn’t obvious enough), is the conclusion—where everything is supposed to finally make sense, but actually leaves you sad and confused.  

So let me leave you with this: What was this column? I’m not even sure if I can entirely answer that question myself. Hopefully, if nothing else, you learned something from reading this—even though education wasn’t the point. (Yeah, I know I said it was).

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