We’re moving soon! NBC 30 (née WKNB, a.k.a. WVIT) is almost ready to move from the building that was being constructed when I was born. In other words, a long time ago.
Our little brick bunker is about to be replaced by a classy, glassy new structure that will accomodate our every digital need, including high definition (and I know you can’t wait to see me in high def. Maybe I’ll call myself ‘G-Def.’) But that’s a story for another day.
I’ll need just one box for the move. I don’t keep much stuff in my desk, and I just started going through what little I have, when I came across some old stuff. “Old stuff” usually brings back fond memories. But this “old stuff” was notes from a consultant, an anchor coach to be precise, dating from 1986 through 1993. (In other words, my pre-NBC30 days.)
In 1986, she wrote: “Gerry needs to project more energy through his eyes as they’re looking a bit glazed.”
“Looking a bit glazed” was and is my natural expression. Projecting energy through my eyes is, well, out of the question. I mean, I’ve projected energy, but it never came out of my eyes.
In 1993, she wrote: “Gerry, be careful that you’re not peering from the top part of your eyes. This makes you look insincere. Also, you need to make sure that you smile more with your eyes. Remember that you project energy through them.”
Seven years later, and again with the “energy and the eyes.” I actually thought I was making progress, believing that it’s better to look “insincere” than “glazed.” But then I had to figure out which part of my eyes I was “peering from.” And I had to smile with my eyes while I was projecting energy. I believe the only thing I did with my eyes after reading that memo was close them. And rest my head on the desk.
But she also left me with this: a diagram, I think, of what television news anchoring is all about.
The station, I assume, paid a pretty penny for this piece of abstract art that I didn’t understand then, and I don’t understand now. I would have an easier time interpreting a Jackson Pollock, and it would be infinitely more enjoyable.
Whether I got my eyes aligned with the sun, the moon, and the stars doesn’t really matter. I’m still here, still employed, still glazed.
And that consultant? I googled her. She’s still around, too. Seems she’s written a couple of Christian-oriented books on motherhood and public speaking. One even invokes the name of Jesus.
Jesus! I would have liked to see him deal with her.