Laziness and greed, two of my worst qualities, usually cancel each other out. For once, however, my two favorite deadly sins have united, causing me to slip quietly from this seat of power.

Yes, your prayers have been answered. I am abdicating the throne.

This is my last issue as editor of the Tucson Weekly. I've decided to return to the free-lance life from which I was lured 19 months ago. Writing for a variety of publications, including national magazines and Web sites, rewards me with a bit more money and a lot more free time than this job. Hence, sloth and avarice prevail.

It's the American way.

But I'm not lobbing a rock through the publisher's window on my way out. I remain on very good terms with all the folks here, and I have agreed to coordinate the Weekly's arts coverage and write at least one piece for that section each week.

My successor is Michael Parnell. He'll introduce himself in this space next week. For now, I'll just tell you that he's a good news hound with a lot of experience, a guy with no illusions about how a wacky paper like this works.

The first thing he'll have to do, of course, is find another name for this column. Around the office we refer to it as the Loathsome Spew, but he may prefer something more elegant.

Meanwhile, welcome Michael and expect him to maintain the Tucson Weekly's standards, once he figures out what they are. See you in the arts section.

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