Part of my job as the intern is to write news stories for our website, the stories that don’t make it out of the jam jar, no matter how much the reporters scrape. Just about every day the reporters will ask me to either write a story on my own, or convert a broadcasted story into a written story. For example, today I was asked to go cover the unveiling of these new road signs; I was one of two reporters there. I hope I don’t sound bitter; I’m learning every day and I very much enjoy it, but this is just the reality of what I do. Sometimes, Bill Pollock, the sports broadcaster, asks me to do this as well. In fact, during my first week at Learfield, I shadowed Bill for a day, and he thought it would be a good idea for me to write and broadcast a story. Boy, was it bad. The broadcast sounded like it came from a tight-lipped sixth grader.
Last Friday, the news room boss, Scott Brandon, was chatting with Bill about Bill’s approaching wedding anniversary. Bill was telling Scott that he was going to take his wife to Chicago for the weekend, and was hoping to take Friday and Monday off, but he couldn’t find a replacement for those days (the news must go on). Scott looked over at me and said, “Why doesn’t Jon do it?” Bill turned his head toward me, smiled a villainous smile, and agreed, “Yeah…” I shrugged my shoulders and put out my hands, palms up. “Sure.”I was trying to hold my smile back, but I don’t think I did a very good job. It felt good that they had faith in me, and I was going to get to write sports stories, be the “sports guy” for a couple days. I could finally hide my femininity without remorse. I could order an entire pizza for myself, and eat it while enjoying a beer, right at work. I could probably even watch Jennifer Lopez’s Flashdance music video on youtube, and not worry if anyone is looking over my shoulder. Hey, he’s the sports guy; what do you expect? If I looked over at a male coworker’s briefcase and noticed a copy of “Atonement” sticking out of one of its pockets, I could ridicule the guy… not like that’s ever happened to me before or anything… Monday rolled around, and Bill started to coach me on the particulars of being him, explaining how he utilizes “cuts” that he gets from our affiliates, and what times the broadcasts go out, and I finally realized… I was going to have to broadcast as well! I got nervous. “So, I’m going to be doing the broadcasts, too, right?” I said coolly. I chose this route, instead of, “I’m doing the broadcasts?!?!” which would have been more accurate. “Yup.” He bit. “So, I’ll have to be here at 5:30 in the morning?” Bill gets in early. “Well, I usually get here a little before 5,” said Bill. “You bastard.” I didn’t say that. Eventually, my head prevailed and I got excited. I’ve been practicing my broadcasting for months, with only a couple of broadcasts to show for it. Granted, unless the Cardinals or Royals are playing, it’ll be about University of Central Missouri softball, but I’m excited. So, stay tuned, and if you’re on the internet on Friday, or Monday, go to www.missourinet.com and click on the “Sports Report” link under “Missourinet Audio”, and you’ll hear my most recent broadcast. I’ll have one done every hour in the early morning, and a couple in the afternoon. By the way, I’ve decided this is how I’m going to go out. So, if you listen on Monday, I’m going to do it naked. ———————- Right now I have two heroes: and Peter Phillips