(Nov 1999) I'm back at KBCI-TV as Assistant Chief Engineer. I did the Chief thing for two years, but found it was not my cup of tea. People are a lot greater hassle than equipment! Now that I'm in my fifties, the title and extra dough aren't worth the hassle.
I've done some film sound work here (Boise ID) on a series of PSA's for the state DA's office and production sound for a half-hour kids program pilot. Still enjoy the production end of the business. Still get to do a little voice work when the station needs an "older voice".
Can't believe the way the biz is changing. When I moved here in summer of 1994 there were 21 radio stations with 17 owners. Now there are 21 stations with four owners. The last independent announced last week that he will sell to one of the groups. It looks like TV will go that way soon. The whole reason of affiliates to distribute programming for the networks is about to change ... satellite and cable will replace them in the smaller markets. If HDTV proves to be a bust, it could happen in the larger cities.
The next five years will tell. I really felt that mine will be the last generation to work their whole lives in the business. So, I guess it only lasted for two generations, the WW2 boys and the boomers. Hate to be so Philosophical, but the downsizing and automation is getting to me. As one of the local engineers says,"The lights are on, the meters are moving, but nobody's home."
Writing you got me thinking...
Years ago when I was working at KCLS in Flagstaff, I had to read a 10-minute live local newscast on Saturday nights. This always took place in a second studio that looked in to the DJ studio. I was the youngest on the staff ... a freshman in college. All the others were upper classmen and worldly. One night I started the newscast and a young lady walked in the studio during the first few minutes. She started disrobing in front of me as I read. When she got to the bra and panties, she started undoing my clothes. Here I am trying my damndest to finish the cast and she's taking my pants down! I looked up and saw at least five guys laughing their heads off in the next studio. She started to pull my shorts down just as I reached the end.... She ran out and I attempted to dress behind a piano!
It turned out she was the sister of one of the announcers, and had done it on a dare. I learned about female anatomy and how to grow a thicker skin that night! I hadn't thought of that for years. Hope you enjoy the story.
Ralph Gould aka