Sticking it to the Channel 7 'man'

Posted by JSYL on Tuesday, May 12, 2009 in
Little known fact: when I was about eight years old, and resembled Violet Beauregard after she ate the stick of gum that tasted like a three course meal at Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory...

...my Dad took me to the Royal Easter Show, which is the highlight of the year for all Aussie kids under the age of 10, right after Christmas and birthdays.

But I wasn't like most well adjusted kids my age. The infamous warehouse lined with themed stalls carrying souvenirs from every Disney film ever made, and Easter showbags filled with everything from two-metre jelly pythons to whoopee cushions did not make my heart race nearly as much as the Channel 7 news set, which had been especially set up to satisfy the fame whoring urges of pretentious brats like myself.

For a small fee, Channel 7 would film you pretending to be a 'real' journalist, while reading the news bulletin script they provided via teleprompter, and sell you the video tape as a memento of your day at the Easter Show. Me? On TV? That was all I needed to know. Gripping Dad's hand in my pudgy little paw, I bent over at the hip in my effort to drag him over to the long queue that had begun to form.

Now, before I go on, understand this about my Dad: he has a really twisted sense of humour, even by universal 'Dad-joke' standards. As we drew closer to the head of the line, he whispered: "Now make sure you try your best up there. You know Channel 7's hiring newsreaders right? If you're really good, maybe they'll pick you!"

Uh oh. Sweat beads dotted my upper brow, and not just from the bright lights behind the camera. It felt like the words before me were moving faster than my eyes, causing me to stumble over almost every single one. When the nightmare was over, I ran over to Dad, tears streaming, red faced with embarrassment, and kicking myself all the way home for ruining my 'one shot at stardom'. Dad laughed: "I was joking! What, you thought I was serious?"

I still have that video somewhere, hidden away among my other darkest hours of shame. I haven't been able to bring myself to watch it since. If asked about it, Dad will always say: "What? I don't remember that! When did I do that?" I think that was the day my beef with Channel 7 began.

In Year 10, I applied for work experience at Channel 7, willing to be the bigger person and put aside our ancient rift. Unbeknown to me, they had received a similar application from another girl in my grade, and, operating under a one-intern-per-school policy, they thanked me very much for my interest but regretfully rejected me. I vowed to attach that letter to my future reciprocal rejection of that commercial network, when Channel 7 would no doubt come to headhunt me for my journalistic prowess.

My, how things have changed since I was eight. I've since moved away from all television aspirations to pursue a print/radio career, and my opinion of Channel 7's journalistic value has also been, erm, revised over the years.

But the Australian media industry is far too small for me to avoid ever crossing paths with my arch nemesis again. A couple of weeks ago, Channel 7's current affairs program 'Today Tonight' came to the publishing firm where I currently work, to interview my editor about our consumer magazine for sea and tree changers, 'Live the Dream'. No, I didn't appear in the tiny 30 second grab he features in, but my back and two cold shoulders, certainly do. Jane: 1, Channel 7: nil. The grudge lives on.

Check out my victorious moment (Literally, a moment: If you blink you might miss me.) here- after you click on the link 'sea change'.



Jane your life is much more interesting than mine. But then again you blog about work and I don't =P

ALSO - yay for you sticking it to the man! You know my company's affiliated with Ch 7.. fraternising with the enemy, aren't we?

My dad makes lame jokes. He doesn't do sarcasm very well - my mum on the other hand.. lol

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