Editors Note:

EDITOR'S NOTE: Fresh off a three year managerial stint, your friendly neighborhood lenslinger is back on the street and under heavy deadline. As the numbing effects of his self-imposed containment wear off, vexing reflections and pithy epistles are sure to follow...

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Behind Every Great Reporter...

...is an equally great photog. Okay, so that's not true. I know reporters who could make Sasquatch cry on cue no matter WHO'S standing behind the camera - just like I know shooters who can concoct whole operas without the aid of any on-air talent. But overall, TV News is a collaborative effort. Hell, even a needy loner like me has to employ the assistance of former reporters to voice his precious anchor-packs. Yes, the act of broadcasting can be best described as a team sport. So why do I so love to go it alone? Well, you could say I don't play well with others, or that I'm a tad anti-social, or that I have something of a chip (or 3) on my shoulder. You could say ALL that! Just don't say I don't like reporters. I LOVE 'EM!

I love reporters who bring in the Emmy they won nine years ago and plant it firmly on their desk for all to admire. Where ELSE am I gonna stick my old chewing gum?

I love reporters who can double as game show hosts. That type of personality comes in damn handy when you're trapped in a Wal-Mart parking lot interviewing random strangers about abortion, moratoriums, or The Lord.

I love reporters who take 45 minutes to tease their bangs yet can log an entire morning's worth of footage I shot in the time it takes Ellen to stop dancing. It's a favor I usually returnin the edit bay.

I love reporters who can accompany me up a widow's porch, get the pictures, soundbites and details our bosses so desire and NOT make me want to take a Lifetime Shower afterwards. They're rare, but they're out there.

I love reporters who constantly remind everyone around them of their personal tragedies, semi-famous spouses or priviliged upbringings. THEY are a satirist's dream.

I love reporters who aren't quite yet ready to admit they're gay - even though it's the ONLY thing their colleagues talk about. Coming Out can't be easy no matter where you work - but TV newsrooms are filled with angry, self-loathing reprobates who live to denigrate anyone more stylish than them.

I love reporters who think I'm some dumb-ass photog. God, how I love them!

I love reporters who used to be debutantes, 'cause they make me stonger. See, I've carried more prom queens over the finish line than most parade floats - and I got the callouses to prove it.

I love reporters who can discern innuendo, cohesion and nuance from rambling county commissioner soliloquies, l-o-o-o-n-g after my dumb-ass photog eyes have glazed over.

I love reporters who come to the morning editorial meeting with a dozen story ideas, because chances are I'LL get to turn the really visual, fluffy ones the suits don't want to burn a full crew on. (Thanks, Whitey!)

I love reporters who carry around their make-up and haircare in those six-tiered, oversized tackle boxes. I've produced weekend telethons with less gear.

And finally, I love reporters who can take vague, protracted, esoteric issues and make them electronically palatable for the masses. It's something I cannot do and it serves as a constant reminder that the broadcast world cannot live on smart-ass cameramen alone.

(Speaking of smart-ass cameramen, the one pictured above is one of my all-time favorites: Rick 'Turdpolisher' Portier. The reporter he's standing behind I don't know, but if Turd's backing him up, he's okay by me. Now go check out Rick's latest post on Truisms of Photogerry. And give him my love, would ya?)


turdpolisher said...

thanks for the shout out. that reporter is jim 'scoop' shannon. when he's not trolling the depths of the courthouse for crime, or lending a cohort a secret source, you can find him dodging meadow muffins in search of his next big investigation.

Eric said...

You're welcome Stew! How you?