Saturday, November 04, 2006

The Worst News Job I Ever Had

Well, crosstown football rivalry night is over for another year ... it occurred simultaneously in all three cities that comprise our 5A district and, somehow, civilization as we know it has survived ... at least, for another year ...

Friday morning's story meeting included comments from a couple of recent arrivals about the intensity of these crosstown rivalries ... my response was something to the effect of, 'Welll, lemme tell ya, youngins, ye ain't seen nuthin!'

The worst news job I ever had was under the Friday night lights, several years ago, in Odessa. I was still working at KMID-TV (back in the days when one said 'I work at Big 2' with a swagger in your voice) and we were doing a live shot from Ratliff Stadium for the Odessa High/Permian High game.

The level of intensity that usually accompanies a crosstown game was especially high that year. It had been reported that the UIL was investigating some aspect of Permian's football program, and that said investigation was prompted by reports from OHS faithful ... word on the street was that some scores might be settled, on the field and in the parking lot, and that there might be violence, especially from those who didn't care a whit for football or high school, but were looking for a chance to cause some trouble.

So a couple of us were told to accompany the engineer and help him set up the Big 2 Live Action Cam (a souped-up Suburban with a microwave mast), then stand there between the Live Action Cam and any stones that might be thrown ... cross my heart, and hope to die!

Makes sense really ... production assistants are a-dime-a-dozen. But that Live Action Cam was expensive!

So there I was ... a human shield for Big 2 ... worst news job I ever had ... true story.

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