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Say Neverspeak Three Times…

…and it shall appear! I, Morgan Skylights, have once again returned from walkabout, this time to the frozen tundra of Alaska! We may be undergoing a regime change at the newly re-forged K-Chron, but one thing you can expect to stay the same is my weekly coverage of all the Neverland rumors that are fit to print. So keep your eyes glued to this space, dear readers: starting next week, Neverspeak is back in earnest. Same Neverspeak time, same Nevesrpeak channel.

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Posted in Neverspeak
Posted on February 21, 2017

Caveat Emptor

Neverlandians, by now you have no doubt heard that my father, George Darling, is stepping down from his position as editor-in-chief of the Kensington Chronicle. When Father made a deal with Mr. Hook to sell the paper to JH Media, we were assured that he would continue to run the day-to-day operations at the Chronicle, and that the paper would not be substantially changed going forward. But, from what little he’s told me about it, to all appearances my father’s resignation is a matter of creative differences between himself and the new management. That being the case, I can’t help the nagging suspicion that the winds are about to change here at our local paper, and quite possibly not for the better.

Though my father’s separation from his beloved local newspaper appears on the surface to be entirely amicable, the fact of the matter is George Darling is a man of far too much integrity to air his dirty laundry in a public forum. If there is something more contentious underlying his departure, we may likely never know about it. And the whole situation is further complicated by the fact that our new editor-in-chief, Jas Hook himself, is inextricably entangled with the Darling family on a personal level; it’s no secret that he and my sister Wendy have been happily dating since her time working at JH Media’s corporate headquarters in New York City.

Now, don’t get me wrong: I have used this very space to sing Mr. Hook’s praises in the past. My respect for him as a self-made media mogul knows no bounds. And he has given me no reason to believe that he has anything but the best of intentions when it comes to my sister; Mr. Hook and Wendy are, I think, a coupling to which we all could aspire. But I can believe all of those things about him and still have reservations about some of the decisions he’s made re: the Chronicle, even in the short time he’s been at the helm, not the least of which being his decision to take the paper global. For a paper that has been about hyperlocal news since its inception, that sends up a big red flag.

And it is with great regret that I report that this article you are now reading will be the last of the John Darling editorials, such as they have been. And perhaps I don’t have quite as much integrity as my father, because I feel compelled to say that the cessation of this feature is in no way a choice that I have made; it is, rather, an edict that has come down from up on high. It is my sincerest hope that the demise of my longtime column is in no way connected with my vocal equivocation about the direction of the Chronicle under the new management (though, to Mr. Hook’s credit, he has allowed me to run this piece unedited, in its original form). I had hoped to one day be the top newsman myself here at the Chronicle, but I have in effect been demoted from assistant to the editor-in-chief to merely a staff writer. As of this moment, I do not know the type of content I will be expected to produce under the new regime. I would love it if my instincts about all of this were wrong; but they so very rarely are.

Dear readers, I cannot thank you enough for your unwavering support over lo these many years. And I am not going anywhere! Not yet. The Kensington Chronicle as we knew it may be dead, replaced instead by the K-Chron, but some things never change. As long as I’m here, you, the people of Neverland, will have a voice. And don’t hesitate to tell me on Twitter what you think of this new direction in the days and weeks to come. The Kensington Chronicle has always been a paper of and for the people; and if I have anything to say about it, the same will hold true for the K-Chron.

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Posted in Editorials
Posted on February 20, 2017

The More They Stay The Same

People of Neverland, Jas Hook here.  My darling Wendy recently brought it to my attention that her family’s local newspaper has been floundering.  This news kicked me back on my heels, and spurred me on to do something about it; not just because the Kensington Chronicle matters to Wendy but because it matters to me.  I, too, read John’s editorials week in and week out, and take no small source of pleasure from Michael’s Dear Darling videos.  What’s more, even though I’ve spent the better part of my life far from the town I first called home, an important part of my heart has always been in Neverland.  For a long time, I was the only out-of-state subscriber to the Chronicle.  Shipping a copy to New York on a daily basis is not the cheapest proposition in the world, but being the CEO of a massive global conglomerate like JH Media does occasionally have its privileges.  Honestly, my advisors recommended against acquiring the Chronicle; “It doesn’t make any sense,” they told me, “Not from a financial standpoint.” Well, I’ll tell all of you exactly what I told them: JH Media is about more than just what makes “financial sense.”

I didn’t really know Mr. George Darling very well in high school, but I’ve spent a great deal of time with him on my most recent visit to Neverland.  And I’m happy to report that he’s every bit the charming, local hero that the paper makes him out to be.  His passion for the Chronicle is unmatched (except, perhaps, by that of his son John), and I’m proud to say that more than a little of that passion has rubbed off on me.  Like George said in his last editorial, the Kensington Chronicle is a Neverland institution.  And as such, I want to inform everyone that JH Media maintains a commitment to making as few changes as possible.  With that in mind, for as long as he’s willing and able, there will always be a place for Mr. George Darling at the helm.

I know that John Darling, editor of our online edition, is a prototypical Neverlandian in his reluctance to embrace change.  It’s my understanding that he’s not been taking the paper’s sale  particularly well, which is why he hasn’t written any editorials for the past several weeks.  But I want to make it clear that I know John’s aversion to the new status quo has nothing to do with me or my company; John and I have enjoyed nothing but the most cordial of relationships since I came into his sister Wendy’s life.  I think John is just having trouble wrapping his mind around the fact that the family business is no longer all in the family.  But I have no doubt that John will come around, and his position will be waiting for him when he does.  Because, as a longtime reader, I understand that the Kensington Chronicle needs John Darling as much as he needs it.

So take heart, people of Neverland: your beloved local newspaper isn’t going anywhere.  If anything, I’m committed to making the Kensington Chronicle better than ever.  I’d also like to invite your input during this period of transition, to make sure we’re putting out a paper that meets, and hopefully even exceeds, your needs.  Despite my complicated history with Neverland, in my heart it’s always been my home.  It is an incredible honor to shepherd my favorite local paper into what I know will be a new era of prosperity, and I’m fully aware of the great responsibility that that entails.  Your stories are the heart of Neverland, constant readers, and we’re going to keep telling your stories.  Because I wouldn’t have it any other way.

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Posted in Editorials
Posted on September 9, 2015

Dear Darling – SELF HELP!

Dear Darling,
Hey Michael it’s Michael! How are you? Never mind I know exactly how you’re doing – you’re freaking out! Everything is changing and I don’t know what to do! Today I saw John wearing a wrinkled shirt. A WRINKLED SHIRT!!! If that is not a clear sign that these are the end times than I don’t know what is! So I guess my question to me is…How do you stay calm when you have no friggin’ idea what will happen next, and down is up, and right is wrong, and good is bad, and you’re completely OUT OF CHEESY POOFS!?!?!?!!1

Sincerely Michael Darling.

Well, Michael I can tell by your punctuation that you are A) very handsome B) very cool and C) super stressed out.  And my advice to you is…I DON’T KNOW!  And what do I do when I’m lost?  Watch cartoons!!! So please enjoy this advice:

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Posted in Dear Darling
Posted on September 9, 2015

Work vs Play

How do you manage work and play? My personal experience has been a bit sketchy, especially nearing exam times, and I would like to hear your advice.

-Zoe

This is an awesome question Zoe my darlingite!  Especially when everyone is getting ready to head back to school!

We all have important things that we have to do.  You have to do your homework, you have to clean your room, you have to organize your dvd collection by ability to make you laugh so hard milk comes out your nose.  But it’s also important to LIVE!  It’s important to go outside and play tag with the squirrels, to try every ice cream flavor they have at the Jolly Roger Soda Shop , to puke rainbows because you ate 40 pounds of ice cream, to have FUN!

But you have to have balance.

Many of you know my brother John.  A while back, he was in a place where work was his number one priority.  He would work 25 hours a day, yes 25.  He was so efficient that somehow he managed to get an extra hour out of every day!  It was driving him crazy!  And then you have my, old friend, Peter.  Peter was so focused on only doing things he thought were fun that he lost his job.  If you give work too much time, you’ll isolate yourself from the rest of the world.  But if you abandon all your responsibilities, you’ll disappoint the people who are counting on you and end up just as alone.

Later in life, you can find work that actually makes you happy!  I love talking to all of my darlingites, so work and play are sorta the same thing!  For now, while you’re in school, just make sure you keep that balance!  Try rewarding yourself for spending an hour studying by drawing a picture of your teacher and his goofy tie!  Or maybe read the chapters your assigned outside to get some fresh air!   Whatever you do, keep it balanced 🙂

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Posted in Dear Darling
Posted on September 2, 2015

Neverspeak Weekly 8/25/2015

New Paper. If you haven’t already heard, JHMedia has bought the Kensington Chronicle. It’s definitely a little weird around here, but we are optimistic that the new merger will allow the Chronicle to keep both its integrity and its place in the hearts of Neverlandians. It’s pretty well known around town that the paper has been going through some hard times. While it’s difficult to imagine the paper being run by anyone but the Darlings, the important thing is that it’s still here.

Reapply Your UnBlock. The members of the local band Fish Girl Pond were seen with some friends at the Jolly Roger taking a break from touring and songwriting for some much needed R&R. Nanny Ams, Mia Rivers, and Rowan O’Connor joined them over plates of nachos and bowls of ice cream. Word has it the band is working on some new material. Perhaps they will debut a new song at Sarah-Jane Lakewood’s engagement party this week?

Sign Language. Wendy Darling started her book tour here in Neverland last week. Locals lined up outside of Neverland Books to get their hands on some of the first copies of her new book “Ask Wendy!”. The local, soon to be national, celebrity was gracious and charming as she signed books for everyone who showed up and a few extras for those who couldn’t be there.

Beyond the Pale.  Even though it’s the end of summer and most of us are sun-kissed or just downright red, there have been a few new residents of the paler variety. Maybe they’re Scandinavian? But I never knew Scandinavians to have such a thirst for tomato juice. Well, thankfully, Teresa Delacruz seems to know how to keep those Scandinavians in line.  And don’t worry, she’s back from her vacation to Chicago with Neal.  Even Scandinavian wranglers need a little fun in the sun.

Bagha Tricks. Local entrepreneur Lily Bagha is having a bad week. Just as word leaked that she and Peter Pan were all but finished, her company was taken over in a hostile move by JHMedia. Bagha Industries had gone public earlier this week, flooding the market with its stocks. Apparently, this was a gamble. The company stood to make a huge profit while they risked someone buying up all the stocks and have the controlling share of the company. This is exactly what happened when Jas Hook swooped in and immediately booted Lily Bagha out.

Star-crossed. Sarah-Jane Lakewood and fiance Alfie will be celebrating their engagement this Friday. It should be a swanky party – the only catch is that it is taking place in New York.  The couple’s families and circle of Hollywood friends will be in attendance.  Word has it they are flying in Mermaid Lagoon for the occasion. The party will be a throwback to 1920s glamour with New Orleans cuisine and endless champagne.  So, if you can hop a plane (or convince Sarah-Jane to share her jet), you probably should!

Boy in Blue. Neverland couldn’t be happier with its new Deputy Sheriff G. Harrison Lestrade. One resident said, “I feel safer knowing that Deputy Sheriff Lestrade is on the case, keeping our town safe. And it helps that he’s cute.” Another pledged to make him her famous chili cheese tacos stating, “Well, that’s his nickname isn’t it?” Yes, yes it is. Thanks for your constant vigilance, Deputy Sheriff Tacos! Let us know how those chili cheese things turn out!

Trending
Social Medium
#FirstDayOfSchool
Ice cream
@RandomActsOrg
#AustenBiopic
No More ‘Hot Piece’ Roles
New Lost Boy
Theodore the Snake

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Posted in Neverspeak
Posted on August 25, 2015

Dear Darling – Being Yourself

How are you so free? You are always yourself, no matter what anyone thinks of you. Every time I try to be myself, people tell me exactly who I should be and what I should do with my life. It feels like I’m twenty different people trying to please fifty. It’s gotten to the point where I don’t even know who I am anymore. It’s been the cause of my depression for almost two years and I don’t know what to do. I just want to make everyone else happy.
-Emily
Anytime people try to tell me to be less me, AKA less AWESOME, I just watch their mouths move and replace all the words with “Wah wah wu-wah wu-wah” and nod until they walk away.

 

Haters gonna hate man! As long as the you YOU are isn’t unkind or destructive or harmful to anyone else – DO YOU! You’ve exhausted yourself trying to make other people happy; it’s time to get rid of 19 of those 20 people pleasers and pick the person you wanna be. It’s not gonna happen overnight either. Finding the happiest you can take time. Imagine if Goku stopped at Saiyan and never went Super Saiyan?

 

Just do me a favor, put yourself first sometimes. We shouldn’t put ourselves first all the time – that’s a one-way ticket to I’m a Jerk Town. But if you always put yourself last and try to be someone just to make others happy, you’ll be the number one resident of Bummed Outville. So take a deep breath and start tuning out anyone that says who you are isn’t enough.

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Posted in Dear Darling
Posted on August 19, 2015

Neverspeak Weekly 8/18/15

The Love Edition

We all know that Neverland is a magical place, and not just because of fairy dust and the Forever Gardens. Quite simply, Neverland brings lost souls together. One wouldn’t expect a small, relatively quiet town like Neverland to attract so many people from so many places. Usually you find such melting pots in big cities like New York or Los Angeles, where wandering people are drawn like moths to a flame and all too often get burned. But, those who venture to the heart of the country instead of away from it will find in the middle of Ohio a haven like no other.

The idyllic beauty and small town charm of Neverland allows those lost souls to become whole. Here, they can be whoever they chose – an ice cream maker or a detective, a book shop owner or a gossip columnist. And when they can express themselves the way they want to, they are open enough to attract the kind of love they deserve. Being relatively new to Neverland, I am still getting used to this new way of being. However, I can’t help but be inspired by all of the love I see around me. This week I want to focus on the couples that are the heart of Neverland.

#MEli The romance of Mia Rivers and Eli Traynor is especially dear to my heart, because I totally called that sh*t from the very beginning. Some might say they are an unlikely pair, a sweet bookworm and a horse-loving cowboy, but you know the saying. Rhymes with composites contract. After a slightly rocky start punctuated by some misunderstandings and cross-country crises, they are back on track. Or should I say, back on horseback?

#Tabri Bri Valdivia and G. Harrison Lestrade (nicknamed Agent Tacos) had your everyday, run-of-the-mill workplace romance. They just happened to be super-spies with the FBI while they were doing it. Both have since given up glamour and danger for a more settled life here in Neverland. Bri owns Neverland Books and Agent Tacos has become Deputy Sheriff Tacos. Yet no matter how normal their lives have become, their love is the stuff of fairytales (or spy novels).

#Jodie Jo and Freddie Wentworth may have been keeping a low profile this summer, but they have good reason. As new parents to baby Lillian, they certainly have their hands full. Having just celebrated the first year of their marriage, the couple is going strong. Their little family is a joy to behold. When will little Lillian have some playmates, hmmmm, other couples?

#TheifSlayer Teresa Delacruz splits her time between Neverland and Cleveland, attending to her slightly mysterious slayer duties. So, it would make sense that she would date somebody from outside the Neverland circle. After attending the Midsummer Ball with a red herring of a date, Teresa announced that her heart had been stolen by someone else. He was a charming thief (figuratively and literally) named Neal and the two have been inseparable ever since. Guess it’s her sacred duty to keep an eye (and some hands) on a possible threat at all times?

#Jesley Juliet Carpenter and Wesley Parsons may have the most soulful connection here in Neverland. They have fought valiantly through distance and demons (just figurative) to be together. After meeting in a very trying set of circumstances (Juliet saved Wesley from a violent kidnapping), no one knew if the two could make their love last. But finally, after much debate, Wesley made the brave decision to give Neverland a chance so he could be with his Juliet.

#Salfie This nickname is unofficial, but it works perfectly for a couple that is constantly in the media. Sarah-Jane Lakewood and her fiancé Alfie live the high-life as celebrities who jet in and out of Neverland. Alfie likes to keep a low profile, but Sarah-Jane is very active in the community. Everyone became a part of their romance when Alfie proposed to Sarah-Jane on the dance floor at the Midsummer Ball. They will be having an engagement party later this month!

Next up is the sexy single’s edition…unless everyone’s already paired by then!

Trending
The Laura Ingalls Wilder Road Trip
John Oliver Sex Ed Video
#adulting
D23 Expo
Ask Wendy!
Fanny and Henry
@TheGeekieAwards
Streamy Noms

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Posted in Neverspeak
Posted on August 18, 2015

Dear Darling – She loves me…not?

How do you get over someone who you liked but didn’t like you back?
-PersonNeedingMichael’sWisdom
Well, PersonNeedingMichael’sWisdom, first of all…What an awesome name!!! I mean, how crazy is it that your mom named you PersonNeedingMichael’sWisdom?? What are the odds?!?! There are no coincidences, only things that happen by total random chance, so I am excited to be the Michael that offers the wisdom you need!

Second of all, this is rough. I know it’s hard to believe, because I’m so muscular and handsome and funny and charming, but this has happened to me. (GASP) We don’t have as much control over how we feel as we’d like to think we do and sometimes you see someone and BAM! Feelings just pounce on you, like a…like a TIGER! But we have even less control over how other people feel.

The most important thing to remember is that it isn’t a reflection on how good or bad you are. Sometimes our brains are jerks and tell us that if So-and-So doesn’t like us, then we shouldn’t like ourselves. Well that is dog poop! Don’t listen to it! You take that thought and you throw that right in the trash! Who knows what the other person is thinking, don’t over-analyze it, don’t get all macho (or girl-cho?) and become angry at them. They are not required to like you back. And odds are, there is someone around who does like you and hasn’t told you yet, and seeing you deal with rejection badly might totally turn them off.

Chin up. Literally. Walk tall, walk proud. Realize that you will be enough, NAY, you will be excessively awesome for someone else. And until that time comes you’re just gonna keep getting better and better. And maybe that person who wasn’t into you will come running crying “Wait! Wait! I see it now, you’re the most amazingest, there will never be one more cool, give me another chance!” and you’ll just tip your sunglasses and say “Sorry, that ship has sailed” and walk away in slo-mo.

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Posted in Dear Darling
Posted on August 12, 2015

Pity Party Canceled

Dear readers, I’ve read over the editorials I published in the past couple of months, and I’d like to take a moment to apologize for how myopically angsty they are!  I guess when you look at your life and you find enough areas wanting, it’s easy to get lost in a veritable quagmire of self pity.  What’s more, after a while that kind of bleak outlook can become something of a self-fulfilling prophecy.  This irrational fear of failure, this unflinching belief that the bad parts of your history will inevitably repeat themselves, can relegate you to a life of stagnating inaction.  And I don’t think I realized just how introverted and work-obsessed all of this had made me.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I am a workaholic at heart; I always prefer being busy to the alternative, and you know what they say about idle hands.  But I think that many of you, my stalwart friends, recognized in me something that I’m only now starting to grasp; In recent months, I’ve withdrawn even deeper into my work to distract myself from all of life’s other problems.  My work life is something I can unequivocally control.  There’s a certain safety in that.  But it’s entirely too easy to focus on work to the expense of… life!  And I’m hoping, with your help, I’ll be able to see that from now on.

I’m realizing finally that, more often than not, it’s best to confront problems head-on.  Case in point, I let Wendy’s lack of correspondence fester in my mind, creating a nightmarish (and entirely fictional) scenario in which she was moving on without me.  For the longest time, I avoided confronting her about it because at some level I believed that doing so would confirm my greatest fears.  But after finally hashing things out with her, I understand that her lack of contact had almost nothing to do with me, and that, in the final analysis, a life without her siblings in it is as terrifying a prospect for her as it is for me.

What’s more, I know that you loyal readers have had a front-row seat for the saga of John Darling’s romantic journey, or lack-thereof.  Well, on that front, I’m happy to report that maybe, just maybe, the axiom of “’you’ll find someone when you least expect it” may finally be bearing fruit.  It’s really too early for me to tell, but suffice to say I may be coming to all of you for advice in this area in the not-too-distant future.  I know someone’s love life may seem like a particularly unusual thing to crowd-source, but, honestly, I feel like I’ll need all the help I can get.  And I do so very much value and trust all of your opinions.

So thank you, all of you, for the constant support and words of encouragement.  If ever again you see me teetering on the precipice of unchecked self pity, please don’t hesitate to let me know.  Sometimes a dark outlook change comes on so gradually it’s difficult to acknowledge just how unclearly you’re thinking, you’re too close to your own life to see it.  And I want all of you to know that I want this to be a two-way street.  I’m not the only person in Neverland to become mired in a bog of uncertainty and self doubt, it happens to all of us from time to time.  In those moments, when you have questions, concerns, or just simply need a friend, you know where to find me, and I hope you won’t hesitate to reach out.  We’re stronger together than we are apart, and I expect I’ll be seeing more of you as I begin to crawl out of my self-imposed exile.

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Posted in Editorials
Posted on August 6, 2015

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