Saturday, December 18, 2004

Remembering And Reminders

I spent Thursday evening at a retirement party sharing stories many of my co-workers had never heard. It was nice to reminisce. Our industry has changed so much that there aren't a lot of old timers around any more and certainly the way things operate these days is far more rigid than in years past.

That doesn't bother me. It's how it has to order to maintain control sometimes you have to tighten the reigns.

Last night, Amy and I attended Christmas party for my corporation. It was lavish and loud. It was crowded and although it was very nice Amy and I soon felt out of place. We eventually decided to leave but as we were walking out the door we were greeted by my old boss. He's my age. He joined the radio stations as a salesman about the same time I started as an overnight reporter/writer and eventually he was in control of all the company stations in the market. He left four or five years ago to take a position heading up all of the international radio stations owned by our corporation. It was wonderful to see him. He seems happy.

He and I always had a good relationship and I was flattered when he said he used me as an example in many an overseas meeting when trying to explain to rather stiff necked folks that it was possible to be entertaining and yet still be a credible newscaster. I told him he should consider letting me prove it to those folks in person. I could suffer through a few corporate junkets to Australia and China for the good of the company. I'm a trooper.

Actually he did very subtly plant a seed that might grow into another opportunity, but mostly he wanted to share stories. He picked my brain to recall some of the many eccentric characters that have graced our work lives and as we parted we promised to make time to write down some of those memories.

I've worked with a lot of pretty strange folks over the years and indeed with a little help it might make for a very entertaining book...or at the very least a 13 week sitcom commitment from a desperate programming executive at the WB network.

It was interesting that at the retirement party the night before I spent a good bit of time talking with a woman who had worked at our radio stations years ago, then left and has now returned. That was a good conversation too...we didn't share stories of the past though.

We did talk of our struggles but more in terms of how we've managed to get by amid the roiling waters of corporate change.

Somewhere a long the way we both found something to cling to...the same thing. God.

We parted promising to make time to have lunch and talk about our faith and how that's held us together in the hard times.

I doubt that would make for a very entertaining sitcom...but I know it's already made for a very good book.