When I joined The Daily Cardinal my first semester at the University of Wisconsin-Madison last spring, I was an associate news writer. Soon enough, I threw out the idea of creating a satire section, at which point I learned that that’s what the Almanac is — I had just assumed it was a calendar or horoscopes or something.
On April 1, 2021 (a fitting coincidence), my first article in this section was published — “Memorial Union to give students free MREs,” a commentary on how UW kept sending out emails about free food at a time when students were much more worried about pandemic job loss and high tuition costs than getting their hands on some frozen fettuccine alfredo.
Though I was proud of some of my associate news stories and was previously the news editor at Madison College, I instantly loved writing satire more. I liked that I could allude to what was happening in the world while also being incredibly stupid. My feelings were further solidified this past September, when I was told that I had to pick between the two sections since writers can’t work for both news and an ultimately opinion-based section. Plus, the associate news editor realized that I didn’t know how to read or write and had just been using voice-to-text all along.
From the time I began my “work” on this section, I was the most frequent writer, as my serious-to-dumb thought ratio — as well as my list of priorities — is way off. In fall 2021, I learned that dynamic Almanac editor duo Nick and Gillian Rawling (who are siblings, not a married couple as I had first assumed after reading their names) were studying abroad the next semester, leaving the editor position wide open. Better yet, absolutely nobody but me was interested.
In December, I narrowly escaped the possibility of voting members of The Daily Cardinal being like “eh, maybe we should just scrap the section until Mackenzie graduates,” and swore in on a copy of “Cosmo’s Aqua Kama Sutra.” The next day, I proudly created and hung up an “Editor by Default Award” certificate next to my desk.
Many articles, Betty White knick knacks, accusations of literally living in the office and several unhappy board members later, it seems that management has forgotten to fire me. I look forward to continuing to take advantage of that until I graduate or am no longer welcome to step foot on campus.
Mackenzie is the first ever editor of The Beet and actually made of over 62% beet.