Inside Christie Blatchford’s goodbye party

J-Source reporter Alex Bosanac caught up with the former Globe and Mail columnist Christie Blatchford at the paper’s send-off party last week to chat about Blatchford’s move to Postmedia, her time at the Globe and her first column at her new gig.

A spirited crowd of Globe and Mail reporters jammed the back patio of the Cadillac Lounge in the west-Toronto neighbourhood of Parkdale late last week to send off two of the paper’s most popular writers, columnist Christie Blatchford and feature writer Tony Reinhart.
Blatchford’s departure sent the journalism world a-Twitter on June 1, after it was announced the prominent columnist would be moving to Postmedia.
When J-Source asked her about the move, Blatchford didn’t play down her excitement about returning to her desk at the National Post.
“The whole time I was at the Globe I still talked about the fact that my heart is with the Post,” she said, at the same time praising her colleagues and bosses at the Globe.
Ultimately, Blatchford said her second stint at the Globe and Mail reminded her of a bad marriage.
“Both sides tried, but it inevitably collapsed in on itself,” she said. “But we tried, so that’s nice.”  
Blatchford wouldn’t elaborate further or say what finally prompted her to leave her job at the Globe. She did, however, add that the Asper family’s sale of Postmedia helped seal her decision.
As for the question of her first column, at Postmedia, Blatchford said she didn’t know yet. She explained that she had been planning to write about the Ashley Smith inquest, but since it’s been delayed she’s checking other options.
In other words:
“I’m f****** doomed.”

(Not really. Her first column, A frank talk about the sex trade is overdue, was published online yesterday and is featured in the paper today.)
J-Source also caught up with Reinhart, winner of a 2002 National Newspaper Award for his short feature on a bike mechanic. He moved back to his hometown of Waterloo, Ont. last fall, he said, mainly to be closer to his teenage sons.
He is now leaving journalism, after being recruited by Communitech, a Waterloo-based non-profit that supports high-tech companies in the area.
“I knew that a move back would precipitate a change in my career but I’ve been a journalist for 23 years,” Reinhart said, “I felt it was time to change things up.”
He says he’s excited about his position, which is newly created and lets him write on innovations in the burgeoning industry.
“It [the position] will be for me to build,” Reinhart said.
Both he and Blatchford were presented with a cartoonist’s caricature and mock-front pages filled with satirical stories written about them by their colleagues.

Alexandra Bosanac is a fourth-year journalism student at Ryerson University and former student’s lounge editor at J-source. She’s interning at the Town Crier newspapers this summer. Tweet her @alexbosanac