I discovered a new fear yesterday.
It’s kind of a funny story, really. Fichtel remarked to me that after that day, the new female evening anchor wouldn’t be available for photos with the rest of the team, so if I wanted to get some shots I should run down there right after the 6 o’clock show. He added that the sports director had to leave right away, so I’d have to be quick. I thanked Fichtel for letting me know and put my camera on my desk so I’d remember.
Right before the show started, I got a call from the 6 o’clock producer. “[Male evening anchor] wants you and [my boss] in the studio during the first break,” he said.
“He just wants you down there.”
Now, it did occur to me that it could be for pictures. But the entire team wouldn’t be down there at that time; it would just be the two anchors. And what would we need my boss for? I started to freak out. Surely the anchors weren’t going to talk about the website or something and try to put me on the show!
Frantically, I checked the script. I didn’t see anything in the second block about the website. But it just seemed too weird. I went to my boss’ office to see if she knew anything.
“Do you know why [male anchor] wants us during the first break?”
It turned out that she knew nothing about it. I told her what the 6 o’clock producer had said to me. She turned to give the male anchor a questioning look–one wall of her office is a window into the studio.
Apparently we were rolling video at the time because he started gesturing to explain what he meant. He pointed to either side of himself.
Horrorstruck, I thought he meant for us to sit at the desk next to him, and I blurted out, “I’m not going on air!” I’m pretty sure my voice was shaking.
Finally he mimed taking a picture with a camera. I almost died with relief. And so I went down there during the first break and got a few two-shots of the anchors.
But it doesn’t end there!
Right after the show, the 6 o’clock producer stopped by my office. “[Male anchor] wants you in the studio,” he said.
“Are you sure?” I asked, feeling my nerves start to thrum again.
“Yes, he just told me.”
“I don’t know, he just wants you.”
I’m pretty sure this lack of information egged on my paranoia. I mean, the show was over, so obviously I couldn’t be on it now. But didn’t the sports director have to leave? Surely it wasn’t about pictures again.
I was headed down the hall without my camera when I saw the 6 o’clock producer stop the sports director on his way out. “[Male anchor] wants you back down there,” he said.
The sports director looked at me. “What is this for? I have to go.”
I said “I don’t know” in a voice that sounded like I was having a panic attack. Then I turned around and ran into my office to grab the camera.
And yes, it was for pictures again. This time it was to get the four-shot with the sports director and the chief meteorologist.
The reason they wanted my boss there was to approve the photos. Apparently there had been a previous photo shoot in which none of the photos had been acceptable, and they’d had to call everyone back in to do them over, so the anchors wanted to avoid that entirely. That had happened with someone else taking the pictures, though; my boss didn’t even look at mine :>
I managed to take some pictures from two different angles. All but two of them turned out fairly decent. As I headed back to my office, though, I was still trying to calm down.
So I guess I’m more afraid of being on live TV than I thought. Though I’m sure having no idea what was going on and worrying that I would have “perform” in public had something to do with it.