Thursday, January 19, 2006

Maybe the CIA is hiring

Or maybe not...

Either way, I'm not sure I could get a job after yesterday's fiasco.

Many times in this business we get our interviews by calling in and setting them up. Sometimes, though, people just aren't ready to talk, and we have to try face to face to get our interviews. Today was one of those times...

Our poor subject today: The Superintendent of a local school district who is leaving after a year on the job.

Our mission: Our ND has tasked us today with finding Mr. H. and getting sound to fill the insatiable news beast(5,5:30,6,&11).

[upbeat flashback music swells in and the scene dissolves into the inside of unit 12]
[music fades out]

"Let's park in the back lot. I think that's where the staff parks," I tell reporter Kirk as I pull the plain white news Jeep around the back of the school district administrative offices. I find an open space giving me a view of the door and the whole parking lot.

"His secretary says he's in a meeting until 10:30 then he's heading to Indianapolis," Kirk says as he flips through the background in the file folder sitting on his lap.

He shows me a picture in the article he's been reading.

"Yeah, I know what he looks like. I've interviewed him before, on the NightSide beat."

I zone out a little and turn up the radio because it's only 10:15.

"Brian, is that him?" Kirk asks me as a man gets out of his car and heads into the building.

"I don't know...I didn't get a good look at his face."

"I have to go ask him."

Kirk gets out and approaches the man asking him if he is Mr. H. -- No!

"I think we blew our 'cover'," Kirk laments as he climbs back into the unit.

Several minutes pass and the assistant Superintendent comes out of the building acting normal(that should have tipped me off. Unknown to us this is where the chase actually begins). She heads to a jeep, gets in, and drives off. As I watch, she pulls around to the front of the building.

"She's headed around front. I bet she's going to pick him up," I realize and I throw jeep into drive and pull around front.

The rest of the is like a keystone cops movie. As I'm moving, the assistant hops out of the car and Mr. H. gets into the driver's seat. I look for a parking spot in a limited area, trying to move around people getting into the car. By the time I get the car askew into some sort of parking space, and out of the car, our quarry is on his way to Indianapolis, having eluded this tape toting photog.

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