Monday, July 28, 2008

dear diary

The type of tragedy that always seems to happen someplace else happened here in Knoxville yesterday. A hate-filled shooter opened fire in a one of the many churches along Kingston Pike. The shooting alone was enough to make today one of the more memorable days in my personal broadcast history.

I don't usually write about work but in this case I must make an exception so that I can look back on this post years from now. Due to vacation schedules and the departure of another deejay, the boss asked me to do the midday show instead of the morning show both this week and last. Before we knew about the shooting on Sunday, I got a call from Kim Hansard. She said that Marc Anthony was ill and would miss work the next day. We came up with a plan to air rerun segments during the morning show on Monday. I drove over to the station to load the audio files into the "Google box," which is my name for our broadcast computer system. When I finally exited the soundproof studio, I learned of the shooting in an email from my friend Bean.

I felt that there was no way we could run repeats on a day when Knoxvillians would need to talk about the tragic event. We worked out a new plan that involved a double shift. I would still do the midday show from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and also come in early to do the morning show with Kim from 5:30 to 10:00 a.m. We took lots of calls and talked about heroes, hatred, tolerance, freedom of religion and the effect of violence on children. I commented that the Unitarian Universalist beliefs reminded me of the rights guaranteed by our founding fathers. The most powerful moment came when an eyewitness to the shooting called us. Here's the audio of the call:

To top it all off, we finally had a winner in the station's flyaway contest. For the past few weeks, listeners have been trying to guess an airplane seat number to win a trip to a John Mayer concert in Dallas. An hour later we started the contest for the second flyaway to see Linkin Park in St. Louis. Kim and I were stunned when our first contestant guessed the correct seat. It was even more shocking than my 10-9 victory in the daily Her vs. Him contest. I can't remember the last time the guys won on a day I was filling in for Marc.

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Anonymous catscratch said...

I am not a member of the UU church, but know first hand that they are lovely, loving people.

When I was to get married last year, we lost the venue at the last minute due to unforeseen complications.

The pastor of Oak Ridge UU kindly extended us the use of the sanctuary and fellowship hall at their church for our wedding and reception.

Everyone we encountered was so helpful and joyful.

I think it's an awful shame that there is so much hate towards people who are "different". It is our right as American's to believe what we wish and to worship how we wish.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the congregation, friends and family of the TVUU.


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