Thursday, July 12, 2012
Their hides may be slathered in bluster, but the interior of a TV station live truck has al the charms of a bus station urinal. I should know. I've done more time inside these rolling dumpsters than I have in church and while my soul may suffer for it, it's that goo on my shoe that really worries me. It could be anything... Dried up mudslide. Petrified press release. The brittle husks of a thousand hambones' hopes and dreams. On second thought, I think it's guacamole dip. Or at least it used to be. Whatever the case, it's more than this neat freak can abide, which is why I keep my socks dry and my skivvies tight whenever I pilot one of these lumbering news Hueys. Look there, on the floorboard. Are those raisins? I sure as hell hope so. Otherwise, I'm taking the closest car wash nozzle to this, ahem, mobile newsroom.
'Mobile news room'. The very term is as dated as it is hated, now that technology has shrunk the office equipment needed to collate the day's events. Seem, what used to be a wall of high-end video decks held together by tubes and clamps has been replaced by a single Mac book and an external hard drive or two. What used to resemble a miniature mission control now looks like a holding cell with a laptop chained to the counter. Pretty soon, we'll all be transmitting live data from our eyelid implants and the idea of a trundled-up mini-bus stuffed with moving parts will seem as antiquated as the news reel ephemera Amanda Emily unearths. Me, I'm more heretic than historian, which is why I like to wear a surgical mask whenever I find myself tossing tools into one of these fetid vessels. I'd just as soon lick a Cineplex floor than hunker down among the remnants of deadlines spent. It may sound sexy, but until you've written an entire script in chicken nugget crumbs, you'll never know the unmistakable musk of a million made slots.
So if you don't mind, I have specimens to collect. I'm working on a pilot idea and I want that special blend of neglected spit cup and pot bust flotsam to seal the pitch. The way I see it, I'll hire two tattooed lunkheads to travel around under the auspices of broadcasting. They'll hassle rent-a-cops, get into adventures, solve crimes and thoroughly gross out any and everyone who happens to peek inside their rolling news lab. Think 'Lou Grant' meets' Dexter'. Or 'The Newsroom' as interpreted by those guys from Jack-Ass. Either way you'll know I'm onto something when everyone knows the icky thump of a treasured tripod covered in Chex-Mix, road dust and desperation. Meanwhile, I'll try not to look at the floor the next time I wake up inside of these war-wagons, for if that's not the rotting carcass of an intern's brittle ambition over there in the corner, I'll stop spritzing the place with holy water.
Now hold this crucifix while I drive...