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May 25, 2007

The mystery of Sharon Begley: Solved

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For the past few months I've noticed her superb Wall Street Journal Friday "Science Journal" column to have been filled by a succession of unknowns, basically just taking up space.

I didn't recall a note at the bottom saying she was on book leave or vacation or "away" or wherever it is columnists go when they're not in their usual spot.

After a few months of this I got to wondering, what gives?

I hadn't seen her name pop up anywhere else: was she sick, dead, had she been fired or did she quit?

I asked my crack research team to find out what happened.

After a couple weeks, when they'd turned up nada — we're talking zero, cipher, zilch — I fired them all.

Then I looked into it.

A foray back into the Wall Street Journal archives revealed her last column appeared on February 23 of this year.

It took about 30 seconds on Google to scroll down to what's in the graphic up top.

Huh.

Must not have been a happy parting because a number of emails to various and sundry Wall Street Journal writers and editors who in the past returned them promptly disappeared into hyperspace on the way in.

Or their responses did, because as I noted above the now-unemployed crack research team got the visual equivalent of the sounds of silence.

Rats.

I don't read Newsweek or Time since I consider them about on par with Archie comic books.

And I already read and enjoy my Archies.

Ms. Begley is a very smart cookie.

And she has good ears.

I wonder if a little birdie landed on her shoulder one day last winter and sang two words — "Rupert Murdoch."

I'll tell you one thing: Newsweek has to be pleased as punch to have added this world-class journalist to its masthead.

You can read her Newsweek column here.

May 25, 2007 at 12:01 PM | Permalink


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