Saturday, April 09, 2005

Overheard on the News Hunt

I don't remember EVERYTHING I hear at work, but some quotes just won't stop echoing in my head...

“Drop the mast dude - it’s lookin’ like Ghostbusters out here!” -- a slightly panicky Eric White, describing the dark purple clouds roiling over the Greensboro skyline. I was inside the live truck, editing furiously when the late afternoon storm rolled in.

“I was rolling on it purely for the train wreck quality of it all.” -- an unnamed photographer, on why he wasted disc space on a reporter’s botched attempt at bilingualism while an interviewing a migrant worker. Seems she didn’t understand the torrent of Spanish her feigned understanding of the language unleashed, and thought speaking louder would help.

“I believe the man was murdered and robbed!” -- a disheveled old gentleman theorizing on what may have happened to the dead man being wheeled out of his ransacked house. The old man’s grasp of the obvious was matched only by his liquor-soaked aroma. For some reason, I'll take that man's voice to my grave.

“You must get a lot of chicks with that thing.” -- a tattooed biker with a gray ZZ Top beard, admiring the Sony fancy-cam on my shoulder as we stood amid fifty jacked-up third graders at the N.C. Zoo Polar Bear exhibit. Try as I might, I couldn't convince him otherwise.

“What time’s this gonna be on?” -- a night-gown clad old woman clutching a poodle, inquiring when I might air the footage of the churning inferno in front of us. I found it weird she was concerned with showtime listings, as it was her house burning down.

“I smell darkness.” -- a fellow photog, as we both shuffled our gear into a dimly lit Catholic Church for an extended service observing the passing of the Pope. He was right, the late-afternoon remembrance was swathed in low stain-glassed light.

“When do you think they might find the body?” -- a persistent show producer, asking me via cellphone the exact time authorities planned to stop fooling around and locate the drowning victim they were dragging a lake for. I cannot repeat what I told her.

“What you got there is a broken tooth off a wood-chipper." -- an anonymous voice with a deep Southern accent, solving the mystery of the weird metal object that had fallen form the sky and landed in a woman’s living room. So much for UFO's

“Must be wild, man - out here, livin’ on the edge...” -- a young, first-day intern in a clip-on tie, bristling with excitement as the weary news shooter in the driver's seat fought I-40 hell to get to his 4,00th ribbon-cutting. There were no survivors.

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