Dispatches from the Control Room – March 21

* The rough week behind the scenes continues, dear readers. The promised avalanche never arrived, so all the producers merely stood around and watched the clock, hoping a legit news story would occur. It never did.

The sports team didn’t leave me a morning package. Why would they? It’s not like there’s a national college sports tournament going on right now…

We lost an editor mid-shift as she went home sick with the flu.

Our audio guy called in sick and his replacement never showed.

One writer got confused and wrote about one fatal Burbank fire when we wanted her to write about the other fatal Burbank fire.

There was mass chaos on every level of show-building this morning. My choices were: stale stories from 12 hours ago OR watered-down stories that stretched the definition of “news.” I went with a mix of old garbage and new garbage. I hated this show. Hated it.

* Today was Dick Johnson’s last morning as anchor for the morning shows. He may miss it, but I think he’s going to make a great reporter. Every morning, he’d come in and polish our lackluster scripts to make them worthwhile. Granted, every script became four times as long, but that was part of the Dick Johnson appeal. Here’s a guy who can sit you down and rattle off every fact about some far-flung suburb or City Hall crony. And that’s why I think he’ll ultimately be happier reporting. Sure, he’ll have to do his share of stupid stories where he stands on a freeway overpass and tells you it’s snowing, but if station management is wise, they’ll sick ‘im on government officials. I envision him standing over them as they cower, the rage filling his eyes, gripping the microphone ever tighter and thrusting it down toward their tear-stained faces. And with that familiar baritone, he’d growl, “Tell the truth, alderman/mayor/governor/senator/lackey. I’m freakin’ Dick Johnson.” That is where he belongs – in the field, hunting his prey. You’re on notice, Chicago. DJ is coming for you.

* News flash: Men are clueless. I love this story. It’s like, “Hey, girls. Flirt harder or ignore us!” And I’m like, “Right on, story. Right on.” You girls send nothing but mixed signals.

* Singapore’s population is so oblivious to flirting, the government is funding a class on how to recognize it. This is the 21st century, ladies. If you want a guy, it’s okay just to go up and sit on his lap. Nine times out of ten, he won’t mind. On the tenth, he’ll toss you on the floor. But at least you’ll know where you stand (or fall, as the case may be).

* Last night, Whiskey Rebellion mounted its best show in at least four months. Maybe our best show ever. Why weren’t you there? There was an explicit invitation in yesterday’s blog. I shun you.

* I would write more, but I am exhausted from a lack of sleep and the draining combo of a dynamite improv show and a horrendous newscast. Enjoy your weekend, y’all. Andy says snow is coming. If you show up at the station with torches and pitchforks, I would not blame you.

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