After 25 years in news, I finally found myself on the other side of the camera.

I was in the shower when the phone rang. It was a reporter from one of the television stations who was aware of my former life as an outdoor show host and the fact that I’m an outdoor enthusiast. (i.e.: I like to hunt and fish) Her message said she was doing a story on the possibility of Bass Pro Shop taking over the Pyramid in downtown Memphis and turning it into one of their Superstores and basically wanted to talk to me on camera for reaction to the news. I called her back and told her I was willing to talk and she said she had an interview at 2pm and she could talk to me right after that. I agreed. It was right after I hung up the phone that I broke out into a cold sweat. I had never been interviewed on camera before and I asked my wife if I had made the right decision. My wife just laughed and said I would just fine. I thought back to all the interviews I did with people who were quite nervous about going on camera. I always told them, “Look, you KNOW what you’re talking about. I’m the one who should be nervous. When I do my stand-up later, I have to look like I know what I’m talking about.” That always made them laugh and they’d relax and generally do just fine. The big deal is this: nobody wants to look like a fool for the world to see. So I thought about what answers I would give. Then I realized that most of what I would say would end up on the cutting room floor or at least lost in some digital editor. I felt better.

The piece ran at 6 on AN5. Other than sounding like a high-pitched Howard Dean in his famous rant, my part didn’t sound too geeky. But it was the first time I’d seen myself outside in a beard. I figure it’s time to get out the razor. I looked like some 50-year old gray haired geezer. Wait a minute; I AM a 50-year old gray haired geezer. By the way, thanks Ursula for not making me look like a goob.

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2 Comments on “After 25 years in news, I finally found myself on the other side of the camera.”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    I agree that the razor needs to be dusted off. However, it does not natter what others think. If you like what you see when you look in the mirror KEEP it.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    Joe, I have watched you for years. I hope you don’t stay on the shelf too long. You are an excellent media personality…you would be good in the same area as Mary-Beth!!! DO NOT allow yourself to become too rusty. Come back to television.

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