Some people think my job is glamorous and exciting. Others think it’s horrifying. It is, in fact, all of those things … and none of those things.
Those who think it’s glamorous and exciting are basing my entire career on the 60-second radio story or the 200-word Web story they hear and see. They don’t hear and see the hours of sitting through meetings, waiting for phone calls, crawling on the ground to plug in equipment.
Those who think it’s horrifying are right. We hear the worst of the worst. The most heinous of crimes. We see details and photos of tragedies we don’t post online or speak of into the mic
However, I liken it to being a doctor or a police officer — minus the fact that people’s lives are not in our hands, of course. If doctors and cops became emotionally invested in every person they treated, every case they handled, took the sadness home with them to their families each and every day, it would not only be detrimental to their careers, but also to their psychological well-being.
And so we do our jobs. While not ignoring the seriousness of the events around us, we plug in our equipment, pen and notebook in hand, and ask the questions, record the answers. We siphon out the legal speak, the minutia, the information too gruesome for public consumption and we bring you the story.
Such is covering an execution. Or, in my case, non-execution.
Here is my experience. It was, as we say, my first time.