Pine Nuts: Corporate trust (Opinion)
News reporters tend to mingle with a wider variety of people than those in most other professions. I happen to know this because for fifteen years before Mark Twain tapped me on the shoulder, I was a radio reporter, a malnourished profession at the time that I might have killed-off single-handedly.
Unlike investigative reporters, my motto was, “If It’s Catered It’s News!” And it is amazing how much news you can carry away from a catered corporate event. However, I must caution you, if you are considering getting into the profession of radio news yourself, it can be dangerous…
Not that long ago, maybe forty years, I was covering a swanky corporate soirée when they decided to hold a team-building event. They formed a couple parallel lines of colleagues and called for a volunteer to fall backwards and be caught by this trusting procession, but nobody stepped forward. Well, I was just young enough, and full of enough champagne, to volunteer my services.
While waving bravely to a smattering of applause, I stepped up to the podium of trust.
A big lady, who looked like she had the night off from Big Time Wrestling, helped me into my position, where I was to fall backwards from a slightly elevated perch.
There turned out to be one flaw to this arrangement that had not occurred to me; they did not know me from Adam, and could not have cared a farthing about me unless maybe Eve had been standing up there next to me in period costume.
Just as I was getting situated in my fallback position and everybody was positioned to catch me, there boomed an announcement over the loudspeaker, “LAST CALL!”
A chill ran through my body as the Big Time Wrestling Lady patted me on the chest, and pushed me backwards into my mosh pit, which was suddenly migrating to the hosted bar.
So there I was, falling confidently backwards in midair, alone with my thoughts, waiting for my trusted colleagues to catch me before hitting the hardwood floor, when I realized my trusted colleagues had left me to fend for myself. I actually heard a parting farewell, “Sorry Pal!”
As good fortune would have it, my brother had loaned me a Farmer’s Almanac before leaving home for my reporting assignment, and that Farmer’s Almanac, that I had stuck into my pants, broke my fall to the hardwood floor. The thud I made caught the attention of the Big Time Wrestling Lady. I laid there a moment, hoping somebody might bring me a drink, but nobody did. Then bless her soul, the Big Time Wrestling Lady brought me a pig in a blanket, and confided to me with an earnest whisper into my ear, “You’ll never make it in Big Time Wrestling, Honey.”
I got out of radio news the next morning, and as I was too skinny for Big Time Wrestling, what was next? To be continued…
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