Dispatches from the Control Room – December 7

Today’s the kind of day where you show up to work and you want to throw a chair through a wall.

Everyone here is exhausted from our ’round-the-clock training on our new control room system. We’re all sick of doing snow stories all day, every day. (Not even the rare punctuation of a rare Stacy/Drew Peterson story can shake our ennui.)

I’ve been awake since 2 a.m. yesterday because I haven’t been able to sleep more than five hours since Thanksgiving. That’s what happens when you completely flip and disregard your normal sleep schedule on this vampire shift, and when you’ve been sick for two weeks straight. I mean, I’ve only produced three shows this week, and it feels like it’s my tenth day in a row. My plan is to become so exhausted that I’ll be forced to sleep or die.

So anyway, I’m exhausted. And I had to make good on my donut bet with my fellow producer (and now arch nemesis) Jim. So I reluctantly shuffled to Dunkin’ Donuts down the street and picked up an assorted dozen. Donuts are expensive now. $7.25 for 12 donuts? That’s more than 60 cents a donut. And these are midnight donuts. Not the freshest ever created. I’d pay maybe 10 cents for a stale donut.

I should mention, this is the same Dunkin’ Donuts where, two weeks ago, I bought two incredibly stale blueberry bagels. (99 ridiculous cents each.)

So I walk in and drop a dozen on the desk of Gentleman Jim. He mocked me mercilessly for a good half-hour.

And yet another producer jumped on the bandwagon. “Wow. I never thought we’d see Ben pay for food.”

Yes. I never thought that, either. But my gravy train was derailed by a poorly researched wager. I had to buy food that did not make its way into my mouth, and for that, I have forever lost the will to laugh or listen to music.

After the sting of defeat started to fade, I sat down to prepare the show. Due to yesterday’s NBC5 Weather Hysterics™, we expected a full-on NBC5 Weather Armageddon®.

Alas, we got a NBC5 Weather Letdown. So we took a page from another great leader’s book. When you’ve got your army in place and no compelling evidence to attack, attack anyway. We threw the full force of our news team at a storm that didn’t happen. The non-story became the story. Fair enough. Nothing else was going on.

But it’s Friday. I’m about to be heavily medicated and/or unconscious, so I could care less about the string of defeats and disappointments we faced today. Also, it’s pay day. So my bank account just got a much-needed infusion of cash.

But nothing will make up for that missing $7.25. Nothing.

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