While Kellyn pointed it out in an earlier blog posting, I’m going to take the opportunity, now that Continental Divides is live and online, to link to the reporting by the ABC news crew that was here in October. They spent some time at Red’s open mic, talked to some folks on the sidewalks of downtown Kalispell, and they spent some time at the Beacon offices talking to me.
Here’s a kind of “Montana Diary” piece they also shot which focuses less on the presidential race and more on the flavor of the Flathead. For those guys only being here a day or two, they did a pretty good job of shooting a lot of Kalispell.
And, of course, no trip to Montana by a New York TV crew is complete without a little time in a rustic bar conversing with some of the colorful locals. In this case, it’s Moose’s Saloon, and the character is “Animal.”
While it’s fun to have those national journalists come through, such a visit does demonstrate that Montana remains a battleground state in this election. It also was a bit of a wake-up call for me to be on the receiving end of an interview. I found myself blathering on incessantly, and growing gradually more and more nervous that was saying something idiotic, incorrect or both. I’m happy to see the producers used just a small bit of my interview, but I do think it’s a healthy practice for all reporters to be interviewed every once in a while. It reminds us – which is easy for reporters to forget – that interviewing people makes those many people nervous, and rightly so. Being worried that you are somehow going to be misquoted, or have your words taken out of context, or be misunderstood are common and natural concerns for someone being interviewed, whether you’re a U.S. senator or the average man on the street. It would behoove most journalists to remember that a little more often, and be a bit more forgiving when someone doesn’t want to be interviewed, or isn’t comfortable talking to a reporter – we who are not always the most sympathetic group. I understand that better now.
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