It seems like a million years ago since I was interviewed for a TV segment on a controversial subject.
Since I wrote the below blog post, so much has changed. The substance in question has been legalized in several more states for both medicinal and recreational use, and is now legal, in some forms (not the smokeable form) in my home state of New York. In fact, one of the 20 statewide (at least at first) dispensaries for said now-legal substance is going to open a mile or so from where I live.
I never would have dreamed of that legalization in my 1950's/1960's childhood.
But the dispensary was supposed to open today in Johnson City, New York, and didn't.
Why am I not surprised? Things never seem to work in a timely manner where I live.
Said substance is still illegal in many parts of the United States, and under Federal law, but we all know what it is. I'm still not going to link to the interview, but it is out there if you look hard enough.
The former occupant of the space where the Johnson City dispensary is moving into was last occupied by a restaurant called the Grub House.
How much this opening will benefit our local, hurting economy (and sick people who can benefit from what will be sold there) waits to be seen.
Now for my original post. What a difference two years makes.
My 15 Seconds (Or Less) of Fame
In my 61st year, I finally achieved a moment of local fame, at least with people I know.
Tuesday, I was interviewed for a local TV "person on the street" feature. It happened like this:
Our temperature peaked, at midnight, at 48 degrees. By noontime, it was touching freezing, with the wind whipping, and I knew it wouldn't end until we went below zero. (For those not using the F temperature system, zero is really, really cold.)
I hadn't seen my walking partner in perhaps a month or so, where I work in downtown Binghamton, New York. I was pleased but surprised when she messaged me and asked if I wanted to walk with her to her bank. Well, I did want to get out, and out we went, fighting the wind.
On a street corner, there was a young woman standing in that cold wind, next to a camera on a tripod. On the sidewalk underneath the camera was a microphone. She looked lonely.
We quickly walked past her, fighting the wind, and she watched us, not saying anything.
On the way back, about 10 minutes later, my walking partner (who is a very sociable person, unlike the shy yours truly) went up to the woman, and sympathized with her needing to stand there. At that point, she asked us if we wanted to be interviewed. "Only if it's quick!" my companion replied.
She talked to both of us and asked me to go first. She told me to stand in an exact place and look at an exact place. And, during all this, my mind is churning away. I did have an opinion on the topic but I wanted to say something smart, or at least coherent. (I'm not providing a link because the topic might not be considered appropriate to a blog challenge I'm participating in).
The topic is one being discussed widely here in upstate New York because we may be following some other states' paths in legalizing something (for medical use) that has been illegal throughout the United States for a long time.
It turned out the reporter is originally from a state that has gone all the way in legalizing this thing. We chatted briefly. Then came the magic moment. My 15 (or 10?) seconds of fame had arrived. Would I be up to the challenge?
I think I did quite well. I seem poised and yes, I was coherent.
So I saw myself on TV for one of the few times in my life, and I'm told the interview was repeated three times that evening.
And all I could think of, looking at myself, was:
"Gee! My new glasses look pretty nice on me, don't they?"
Have you ever had a chance to be interviewed, unexpectedly? How did you do?