Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Four Year Old Reporter

It's funny how math works sometimes. Glancing at the calendar today, I just realized that it was 25 years ago today that I covered my very first City Council meeting as part of a radio internship for WPHM Radio in Port Huron, Michigan. 25 years. That would mean I was a reporter at... wow! Just 4 years old!

Well, the first part is true, anyway. It was Marysville City Council. The Mayor was a man named Dave Wright. I interviewed him after the meeting, went back to the radio station and wrote the story, and then called the mayor to confirm my facts. Somehow, some way, I still managed to screw it up. I don't remember the details, but I didn't get the story right. But they still used me at the station, and I ended up staying there for 5 years. I was the station's News Director when I left.

About the only recurring dream I have (other than not being able to find my locker while I roam my High School hallways in my undies) is being back at the radio station again. I never dream about the other 3 stations I worked for... only WPHM. Today, I'm no longer in the radio business except for some commercials I produce in my own home studio. I'm still in journalism very part-time as a freelancer for a couple local papers. My full-time job and obsession is as a Pastor. And I'm loving it.

For someone who is determined to keep looking forward and not back, that dream is a mystery to me. Sometimes in the dream I'm relieved to be back again in familiar territory, but most times I regret coming back. In my dream, I'm wondering what it was in my life that failed and brought me "home" again. We live 160 miles away from my first real job. I have memories, but I don't want to go back again. Northern Michigan is my home now.

Maybe it's a fear of failing. That's logical. We all face that fear from time to time. Maybe those first few years in radio, part of 25 year stretch on on-air shenanigans are so ingrained that I keep re-visiting for old times sake. Who knows? But I'll say this... it is fun to be four again in that dream.

Okay, okay. Four and a half. With a beard.