Dropped again as a Times columnist, Al Martinez writes his final column for the paper:
Actually, this is my second final column. I wrote one a year or so ago when I thought I was leaving; this is, you might say, my final final column.
Not that I am going to dig a hole and bury my computer. This isn't retirement. It's just moving on to another phase of life. I don't intend to while away my days puttering in the garden or playing bingo at a senior center. Don't like bingo. Never have.
I'm going to do what I've always done for the last half a century. I'm going to write and travel, and on certain bluesy twilights I'm going to put on a Billie Holiday tape and have a martini for the good old days. She always puts me in a melancholy mood, which is the way it ought to be. Martinis are best drunk sad.
I've had a ball writing a column. There aren't too many in the newspaper biz who are given an opportunity to write 800 words on their dog and actually get them published. Not a lot of dogs are even worth 800 words.