So Long, Emmett


The man you see smiling in the picture to the left is Emmett Clark, a fantastic guy whom I had the pleasure of working with for a few years at Learning Tree.

Today I received the awful news that my fellow proofreader slipped the surly bonds of earth and went to that Big—wherever it is proofreaders go—in the Sky on June 3, 2010.

Emmett wasn’t a man of too many words. He quietly plugged away at his desk marking up everything that was handed to him, but we’d often hear him chuckle at e-mails we blasted to him.

And when something was incredibly funny, he’d laugh like it was the most hysterical thing he’d ever heard. I’ll miss that laugh.

To show you his dedication to the job, he drove daily from his home in Anaheim Hills to work in El Segundo. Now in case you’re not familiar with that kind of distance, here’s a map from an arbitrary location in Anaheim Hills to Learning Tree. Daily, people. And from 1994 to 2008. In a Datsun, not a Nissan.

The picture above was taken at one of our politically correct-titled Annual Year-End Celebrations, the one time when you’d see Emmett wearing a little more color. At one of the parties, he was selected to win a prize but in order to take it home, he had to sing a karaoke song of his choice. He was told that he could ask for help so he pointed to all of us in the Proofing Department to step up and help.

We did and sounding much like an extremely inebriated version of Mitch Miller and His Gang, we all sang a rousing rendition of “New York, New York” and Emmett went home with his iPod Nano.

And knowing Emmett, that thing either went unused or back to Costco for a refund.

He was a fantastic co-worker and will be missed by everyone. His wit, dedication to the job, and his overall presence left a lasting impression on all of us.

And he said in his final e-mail to the company, “This bull goes out to pasture.”

Requiem in pace, good sir.


Emmett’s cubicle, taken the day after he retired in 2008.



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