Today I leave the best job I ever had, and that counts a brief stint at Trader Joe’s where I tried to get health care after knocking over several cases of Two Buck Chuck with my ass. As asst. managing editor at Washington City Paper for the past two and half years, my job has been mostly plumbing, behind the walls, keeping things running without a nasty backup. But one cannot be merely a plumber and still be employed at an award-winning alternative weekly decimated by its ownership in the digital age. One has to blog.

I know all of you loyal City Desk readers have been following my posts with great vigor. And, so, as my parting gift to you, I give you the highlights of my tenure here (critters, baking, dudes living in their basements, Michael Phelps, D.C. brunch culture [FYI: It still sucks], and did I mention Michael Phelps?), as well as a super sappy goodbye.

First, I want to thank all of the commenters who agree with me regarding Sarah Palin and her inferiority to owls. Because do you know what? Owls are awesome and Sarah Palin is not. I stand by my original post. If you like that one—-and so many of you did—-I would encourage you to please check out my ongoing reportage on critters, including the saga of Lucy the Ninja Dog, ways coyote piss can rid this city of rats, and the adorable cuteness of this bedbug-sniffing beagle.

There were also a number of you who could not hold back the love when it came to my take on brunch. For the record: I am not leaving D.C. because of my hatred of its brunch culture. But it never entered the plus column. And, although I continue to believe what I wrote, I recently discovered that the city I am moving to has a “jazz brunch.” So it seems this paticular sort of suck is not limited to the D.C. metropolitan area. I plan to take down brunch culture in greater Missoula, Mont., in the next incarnation of my career, so stay tuned.

And, unlike this guy, I do plan to have a career that takes me very far away from both my parents’ basement and Brazillian “game.” Thanks, Roosh V, for the memories.

But if my life as a brunch-taker-downer falls flat, I can always fall back on my many successes as a baker. I just don’t know if the Marcello Goldberger Brown Sugar Chocolate Chunk Cookie will have a wider audience.

I do know that I have had the opportunity at City Paper to work with amazing, talented, tough people who make me laugh and challenge me as a journalist and who made me love my job. Among them are the above gentlemen, pictured hanging out in my old cube: Joe Eaton, Jason Cherkis, and Darrow Montgomery. I especially want to thank my bosses, Andrew Beaujon and Erik Wemple. I have never worked for finer people. I now join a cast of alumni who’ve left reluctantly, realizing it probably doesn’t get any better than this.

Looking back on my work here, it’s possible that blogging may not have been the strong suit for an old gal who started in newsrooms that didn’t have Internet, but I didn’t come here to become a great blogger.

I came here to be a part of something great. And I was. Thank you, colleagues and readers, for all of it.