Monday, August 30, 2010

Eyeing the Horizon

Courtesy Jonathan Warren
What other profession can you skulk about a playground at dusk and still feel pretty good about yourself? Loiter outside a homeless shelter with your eyes held high? Part a sea of overdressed strangers while wearing a fishing vest? Name another gig that requires the skills of an assassin, the reflexes of a pilot and the nobility of a pizza delivery guy? Hold that thought, I gotta put some eyes on a sinkhole across town. Seems it swallowed a Prius full of female weight-lifters road trippin' on a vitamin binge. That’s the kind of video the good people of the Upper Midland Heart Zone count on me for. Besides, I didn’t repeatedly volunteer to thread the filmstrip projector in middle school for nothing. See...

I’m on a mission from God.

Okay, maybe not the thunderbolt-hurling, pox-applying, sunset-understanding GOD, but hopefully some middle management deity is reviewing my file, watching the good news I produce and the bad news I dodge and marking it all down some sort of cosmic photog ledger of sorts. I’m really not expecting total consciousness or anything but if I’m gonna be judged, base it on the number of feel-good stories I cranked out as compared to the death-obsessed dreck I had a hand in. Hey, we ALL fall short of the Glory, but if I’m going down (or up) over the kind of tripe I spread across the earthbound airwaves, I feel pretty good - for I’ve profiled (slightly) more dogs in funny hats than I have freshly shackled madmen, no easy feat considering the first four hundred stories I put On-Air began and ended with some sap in handcuffs.

Hey, it was the early Nineties. Arsenio Hall still had a show. There was a lot to be angry about.

Yeah, not counting all those times I slow-mowed video of Revered Ernest Angley walking in and out of Federal Court, I’m pretty good in the Karma Department. There’s only one thing that worries me. The Blog. I’ve been at this this for more than half a decade, spotlighting the plight of TV News Shooters for a small but rabid readership and though it’s humbling to admit, I’ve received some glowing letters over the years. We’re talking personal notes filled with uplift, the kind of divine e-mailed intervention that’s more than once elevated my mood just when it really needed it. But I’d be less than lying if I didn’t admit it troubles me on occasion, More often than not, it’s the rookies who write, they tell me they enjoy reading my screeds then offer up their own adventures. This never fails to please me, but in my inner moments I wonder will I pay for encouraging youngsters to pursue what may be the most intriguing dead-end job on the planet. Can I live with that, let alone live up to it when called on the cosmic carpet?

Lemme get back to you on that.

(Special Thanks to Jonathan Warren, whose above photo got my head spinnin'...)

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