At the dawn of my career, a smart colleague observed that our industry was ripe for a shakeup. We hadn’t really changed that much since the Civil War, he observed, and while it would take time before his speculation happened, it wasn’t so much in the grand scheme of things.
Every so often I think the same thing about TV news. (I also think I’ve written this before. Have I? Well, I’m old. We repeat ourselves.) It’s been the same for, like, EVER, especially the local variety. Co-anchors: Male and female. Reporters: Gene Eric Ethnic and older white guy. Weather: Panic-stricken. Sports: Duuuude. And so on.
So when I read this piece on Romenesko, a list of consultant-approved words and phrases “to help reflect and promote urgency and a ‘happening now’ feeling in a newscast,” well. Been there, heard that:
* we do have some breaking news right away
* rapid developments
* this story is rapidly changing
* you saw it here first just minutes ago
* we are going to be covering this live for you
* breaking overnight
In other rapid developments, a story you must read — how a bassist who had been fired from both Soundgarden AND Nirvana became a Special Forces soldier:
So in 1993, while living in a group house in San Francisco with the guys in Mindfunk, Everman slipped out to meet with recruiters; the Army offered a fast track to becoming a Ranger and perhaps eventually to the Special Forces.
…Everman started waking up early while his bandmates slept in; he went biking, swimming, got in shape. One day, with zero warning, he resigned. He put all of his stuff in storage. He took a flight to New York and went to an Army recruiting office in Manhattan. A couple of weeks later he was on a flight to Georgia. “Was I nervous?” he asked. “I was a little nervous. But I knew.”
When he arrived for basic training at Fort Benning, his hair was cut, his nose ring was removed; he was as anonymous as every other recruit. At 26, he wasn’t an old-timer, but he was close to it. Training had been going on for about a month when Cobain committed suicide and Everman’s rock past was discovered, which gave more ammunition to the drill sergeants. There was a lot of “O.K., rock star, give me 50.” Everman insists he didn’t expect anything else.
Finally, how to drink past the age of 28. It was more like 26 for me. But we all hit that wall.
Holiday eve! I hope we all feel the freedom on Thursday.