Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Exercise secrets of the GOP!

Thank God that the hurricane Gustav didn’t hit New Orleans any harder than it did. Our prayers go out to all of the displaced and harmed, but we’re so grateful that a larger disaster was avoided. That being said, I do have one small point that I’ve often wondered about; why, during a storm, is it necessary to put newscasters outside, in the rain and wind, holding a metal microphone? Is it just so we can see that, yes the wind is really blowing hard, just like we were all taught in 3rd grade? Hurricanes are full of rain and wind and sometimes even lightning! They also often send heavy objects hurtling through the air at amazing velocity and with great force. Fun times to be standing outside in your LL Bean wind breaker with the network insignia on it! You usually see one of these poor tele-journalists standing in 100 mile an hour winds describing how the authorities have forced the evacuation of the area to protect human life. Then they show you the empty streets, all the while soaking wet, holding their hat and squinting into the camera fielding questions from the “important” anchors in the studio, (jacket off, tie loosened and sleeves rolled up as though their ready to start filling sand bags!). I actually saw one yesterday that took the cake; Poor guy standing in the middle of Houma LA ( one of the harder hit sections) wind whipping by at 100+ mph, he gets his report out and answers some inane questions like, “Have you seen any structural damage as of yet to homes or property?” (This question came as a house went cart wheeling behind the poor guy!) Then when he gets to the end of all that, the anchor, ensconced in a warm, dry studio, says… (Wait for it, this is 100% true!)…”Hold on for just a minute Jim we’ll get right back to you!” Oh what I would have given to hear poor old Jim lose it at that point; “I’m sorry Tom, did you say ‘hold on’? It was hard to hear you with the 100 mile an hour winds battering my ear drums. Or maybe the Stop sign that just grazed my skull has me a little dizzy. Or maybe it’s hard to hear because the crew guy that’s laying in 3 feet of water trying to hold me in place is making too much noise coming up for air. I’m sorry; it’s just kind of hard to stand at the threshold of death and hear every amazingly brilliant word that drips from your perfect lips in New York. ‘Hold on’? Really Mr. Big-Time TV Newsman? ‘Hold on’? I have an idea, how about you take your fancy leather-bound script full of incredibly insightful questions like, ‘is it raining really hard there now?’ and roll it up real tight and ‘hold on’ to it while you shove it up your…static! Then the test screen saying ‘Technical Difficulties please stand by’.

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