Thursday, October 19, 2017

I’ve spent more than 25 years in television. I’ve worked many different jobs over that time, but spent 20 years as a promotion producer, which meant I made the commercials for a television station’s news team and programming.

During my time in television, I’ve also been a reporter, videographer and director.  The variety made it easier for me to see how different sides come together to make the whole.  I’m glad to have that kind of experience.

I now work in the digital side of things, meaning I write for a TV website and manage its content. That means I’m also a writer. I’ve been writing professionally for more than 20 years.

But my first published writing was an editorial about the Confederate flag that, at the time, was flying atop the dome of the Statehouse in Columbia, South Carolina. It was printed in The State newspaper when I was in 7th grade. (I’d hate to have to count back to figure out how many years ago that was, but then again, it took until 2000 before the flag came down from the Statehouse dome, then took another 15 (and the tragic shooting of nine people at a downtown Charleston church before it left the Statehouse grounds completely, so that little 7th grade editorial must not have been all that persuasive.

In high school, I was a reporter, then news director, then editor-in-chief of my school newspaper.

I’m an animal lover with a particular affection for dogs. That doesn’t mean I don’t like cats, but I’m definitely a dog person. That began when I was about a year old; my parents brought home a collie puppy. I’ve been in love with four-legged friends ever since. I’ve even volunteered with a local rescue group to help people find four-legged friends of their own.

And I’m a Christian. I’ve been one “officially,” that is, since being baptised, for more than 25 years. But baptism alone doesn’t really signify to me that one is “officially” a Christian. I believed in God long before I was able to overcome fear of the water long enough to go through the ritual of being immersed in water. And it was long after that moment that I really started to understand the magnitude of what that decision means and feels like.
So that’s me in a nutshell.

If you still want to know more, then here are a few fun facts:

  1. I’m a game show fan, particularly of The Price is Right. I went behind the scenes of the show back in 1997 as part of a work assignment, where I met Bob Barker, Janice Pennington, Rod Roddy and the rest of the cast and crew. Aside from those three, I was also delighted to meet legendary producer Roger Dobkowitz, one of the nicest people who ever set foot in a television studio, and Paul Alter, who directed that version of ‘Price,’ but who also directed the original version back in the 1950s.
  2. I’m a recovering hypochondriac. When I say recovering, I mean that I have made myself stop looking for symptoms of illnesses I don’t have on websites like WebMD. Not that I have anything against those sites, mind you, but they just cause me too much stress. So I’ve stopped looking.
  3. I like photography. This includes videography. I don’t take enough photos, but one of these days, I’ll do better with this. I might even try showing off a few more of them.
  4. I’m a ISFJ personality type. According to that, suggested careers for me include administrators, ministry, counseling and writing. I’m glad writing made the list, because that’s what I do more than anything else professionally. I think the traits make me more sensitive to how other people feel, which, in turn, helps me do the rest of what I do well.
  5. Having worked in television now for more than two decades, I’ve met a handful of celebrities. Aside from the folks at The Price is Right I mentioned above, I’ve met several members of the cast of Star Trek: William Shatner, George Takei, James Doohan and Majel Barrett-Roddenberry. I’ve also met soap stars Peter Bergman, Tricia Cast and Scott Reeves. I even met Barack Obama just months before he became president. Who knew I had that kind of power?
  6. I’m middle of the road when it comes to politics. I know a lot of people say that and they really aren’t. But I really am. I vote for people, not parties. I have not, nor would I, vote straight party ticket. Ever. I believe that no one party has all of the answers; if it did, there’d be no reason for the other party to exist.
  7. I like blogging. Even when I don’t. Even when I don’t want to even contemplate writing a post on a given day, I still like blogging. I like this one in particular, which is a good thing because it’s mine. When it becomes too much like work, I suppose I’ll stop it. But I haven’t reached that point, yet, which is obvious because this page is still here for you to read.
  8. As bloggers go, I’m an old-timer. The original version of this blog began on AOL’s blogging platform, “Journals.” I left AOL after they forced ads on everyone’s journals without giving owners any control over which businesses could advertise on their journals, and started censoring certain blogs but never bothered to offer a clear policy about when or why they would do so.
  9. I like good grammar. I dislike poor grammar. I tolerate mediocre grammar on other people’s blogs, but only to a point. Grammar is a topic I address fairly often here. And I assure you that if you look hard enough, you’ll find glaring examples of me breaking the rules of good writing. Hopefully, I will have caught it before you do, and will have fixed it before you stumble upon it. But chances are, sooner or later, you’ll spot one. I believe in doing my best; if I make a mistake, it won’t be because I didn’t try to avoid making one, which is a lot more than I can say for some.
  10. The opinions expressed in the posts here are mine and no one else’s. I say that, only in part, because my employer might want me to make that clear. As a general rule, I don’t ever talk about my employer, and certainly never my specific workplace. That way, I avoid what could be conflicts of interest. You know I work in television; so take what I say in defense of (or in opposition to) that business as you will.

So that’s probably more about me than you wanted to know. But if you’re still reading this far, you must have cared, so thanks for that.
Walter Cronkite, upon his retirement from the CBS Evening News in 1981, claimed that anchormen never fade away, but just keep coming back for more. I hope there’s a little anchorman (or woman) in you, at least when it comes to visiting this blog.