Career Goals

This morning at 6 am I heard a familiar voice deliver the news via CP radio.

In the mid-80’s, this same broadcaster was anchoring the overnight newscasts for what was then known as BN.  I know because it was my job to bring him up on air when I hosted the all-request overnight show at CKGY in Red Deer Alberta. I associate his voice with the overpowering scent of the morning man’s liberally applied aftershave and the weird sound the request line made when it rang.  I could smell and hear those things when I experienced this man’s newscasting this morning. 

So he’s working a weekend, in the wee hours.  Does that make his career a failure?  For all I know he’s semi-retired now and just picking up shifts here and there for summer relief.

I refrained from commenting in detail on a recent Toronto Star article about radio morning hosts and their apparent worry about being replaced if they take too much holiday time.  One in particular was cutting her mat. leave short to be back on air in time for ratings.  One of the dearest people in the world to me was a subject of that article and I didn’t trust my writing abilities enough to comment on the situation without it seeming like a criticism of her, which it would not be, in the least or for a moment.  To each their own, truly.   But tomorrow, that same new Mom could be turfed from her job.  Loyalty doesn’t always work both ways.  A career is a finite thing.  Still, you have to go with what’s important to you at the time and if that’s her choice, well, it’s really not my business to comment on it.

Just the same as it’s not anyone else’s business to comment on why, 9 months ago, I voluntarily walked away from one of the best jobs in the broadcasting industry.  I know some people thought I was nuts.  But it’s only the best job if you’re happy with it.  Sure, I miss the money!  Ooooh, I miss the money.  And I miss my team members, whom I really love like family.  But the lifestyle and the home base were making me miserable.  You only go around once and time is ticking away, my friends.  I’m reminded of that old fart’s warning that, “it’s later than you think!” 

So back to the dude on the crazy newscasting shift.  Who knows why he’s there, if he’s been there all along or if he’s just filling in?  It doesn’t really matter and it’s not right to judge it from an outsider’s point of view.   There could be a million reasons involving priorities in his world that we will never know or understand.  What I’m saying is, people deserve the benefit of the doubt before a quick conclusion is drawn, whether they’ve left the big time for the medium-big time or they’re coming back to work early because they don’t want to lose any of the ground they’ve worked so hard to gain in the ratings.   We’re all just trying to do the best we can with the hand we’ve been dealt and the time we’ve got.