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...

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Nerve to Swerve

Middle of the RoadHere's the thing: when the story a news crew has been working on all morning falls apart, said news crew does NOT simply take a longer lunch. After all, there's still a gaping hole in the evening newscast and now a pissed-off producer to boot. If the news crew is lucky or smart, they'll conjure up something quick and pitch it to a desk suddenly under duress. Otherwise, they could be sent on just. about. anything. Leper festival, moratorium orgy, infected puppy follow-up: the scenarios are grisly but who has time to wretch? Not YOU. You've got two minutes of broadcast to patch - not to mention a lactose-intolerant show-stacker who's pretty pissed Ellen is being interrupted by your selfish needs. Sheesh!

So where am I going with all this? In circles, apparently. It's one of my specialties. I can throw a late model hatchback into a controlled 360 quicker than most cops can execute a PIT maneuver. Practice helps. Tell me on the cellie the widow/Congressman doesn't wanna talk anymore and I'll turn this Escort wagon around so fast the logos will glow. Ya see, shit. Falls. Through. Plans so grandiose they could only come from a morning meeting can smash upon impact on the cold, hard shores of reality. There are many reasons. Broken phone tag. Secretarial insulation. That weird habit people have of working during the day. Yes, a million different ripples can capsize your news-craft and cause producers back at the shop to spill that swill in the break room that passes for coffee all over their Glee mouse pads...

But I'm not here to run down producers - or anyone else for that matter! I only want to go home at the end of the day and not cringe should I wander past my story of the day playing in the corner of the living room. That requires focus: a narrow state of mind that must hold steady even when everything falls at apart three hours before showtime. How do I know? It happened to me three times in a row last week, for reasons I've already forgotten. Not that it matters. NOTHING matters when there's gaping stretch of dead air looming in the distance, a dulling abyss of static and shame with your name all over it. So when you see me blowing past on the interstate, take no offense. I'm merely racing for my livelihood - running headlong into a deadline with precious little to appease a most truculent News God....

Reason enough to get her up on two wheels...

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