When the doors close, my world stops.
I can’t think, can’t breathe, my stomach pings, my wide-eyed glare transfixed on the blinking numbers above the doors.
Until it STOPS.
As soon as the doors open, I’m the first one off.
That’s my life with elevators. I’ll go to great lengths to avoid them even when it means – which is usually – climbing 318 steps daily steps to my 4th floor office and my 5th floor apartment. I’ve showed up at doctors’ offices, events, parties, and interviews, breathless. I’ve convinced my high rise friends to ride down to get me, ride up with me, and, yup, ride back down. I recently annoyed the hell out of my daughter as we rode 30-something floors to visit friends near the top floor of the Viceroy in Miami. Along for the sketchy, jerky ride was a popular NBA basketball player perplexed – or entertained, I’m not sure – by my panic ‘routine.’
Actually, I’m not really sure if it’s elevators I’m afraid of or if it’s falling hard and fast into the bowels of the earth tumbling in its dark center trapped and buried with bitey bugs and slimy worms and silence where no one can hear or save me and I’ll be alone and that’s…The End.
Sounds pretty rational to me.
Earlier this week, my friend Angela was preparing to give a talk to aspiring journalists at her alma mater, which is also my alma mater, Utica College of Syracuse University*. Angela put a shout out on Facebook asking if any journalists had advice worth sharing. Angela, a well-respected producer at the top of her game in the number one market in the country, New York City, didn’t really need the help. But that’s what trained journalists do – consider every source, every angle, and leave no stone unturned.
Her request, to no surprise, solicited a mix of solid advice, a bit of lark, and a good dose of professional sarcasm. All in good fun. All true.
Her request got me thinking about the first time Angela and I met.
We all fall short on something. For each of us, there are some things in life we just don’t ‘get.’ Literally.
Some people are short on cash.
Some on courage.
Others, are short on patience.
Sadly for some, life is short-lived.
But for me…well… I’m just plain short.
So when my acting coach, Nick, recently told me to bring my own monologue to my first advanced acting class, I wrote about what I knew best. It went something like this:
I dedicate this blog to Jim Meech, former colleague and talented CNN nightshift live truck field logistics engineer dude, who’s up all night, tonight.
I have no idea what woke me up at 2:03 this morning and I’m too tired to think about it.
Actually, I’m not even sure I ever really fell asleep. I think I did. Maybe.
If I was paid for every time I woke up in the middle of the night, I’d be retired on Sanibel Island with a frothy fruity drink in my hand next to him.
Yoga people are always so…fit.
It’s so annoying.
I recently attended my first Atlanta Braves baseball game, my second favorite team in baseball, right behind the Cincinnati Reds, who I’ve followed since the days of the Big Red Machine.
If you’re squeamish, or if you’re in a really great mood tonight, you might want to pass on this blog. It’s dark and dreary, but worth sharing. After telling stories for 16 years, I’ve learned some stories get surprising happy endings, even if the beginning and middle are terrible. The end is a chance to get it right. I hope that happens in the sex slave case in Cleveland. Continue reading