KNTU News Casting

Here is one which will be in the upcoming “Notes About Growing Up And Kin” book. Once in college I did the news….

When I was graduate school and married to the kid’s mom I saw that the radio station KNTU 88.1 FM at NTSU – now UNT – wanted volunteers to work on some of their shows. They wanted newscasters and on-air “personalities”. Since I did debate and drama in high school I pursued the news casting role since I knew I could talk.

The first requirement was to build a demo tape reading some short script. Using my stereo at our apartment I recorded one on a cassette tape and sent it to the station which was located in the Speech And Arts building next to Wooten Hall where I had economics and history among other subjects. I soon got a phone call from someone there. I was selected to do the news on the early morning show.

The show went on air at 5Am so I had to get to the station at 4AM or so. One thing they required me to do was look at the wire service print outs and then type up my own copy to read (we got to choose the stories we read, we were editor and news caster in one). Re-typing grew very tiring and I later just read stories right off of the wire on-air. Since I listened to
the station a lot I noticed the liberal slant of many of those reading the news – remember we chose what we read. Since I was a conservative and had voted for President Reagan I decided to make sure MY slant was to the right to counter the usual leftist bent. And that I did and no one ever said a word – if you think this does not happen in the national and local media think again, objectivity seems to have departed in favor of the press being a lapdog not a universal watchdog.

Actually doing the news was pretty easy actually, the on-air “personality” was the lead and would transition me in. I’d flip a switch turn my “mic” on and off I would go. When I was done I would transition back to the lead and he would do his thing. And this cycle repeated itself every 30 minutes until 9AM when the next show went on.

This interesting experience which I did until I graduated with my Master’s gave me quite an insight into what you hear on the radio and see on TV. The technology used now is lights years ahead of our now ancient tape carts and non-computerized analog stuff but the general way it works is still the same.

So regardless of the technology the stories told in the news come and go as events unfurl, touching us all sometimes depending on their magnitude or power of its message and sense of urgency. And so is life’s ever unfolding wire service and with that we will go to a new set of news stories down the road in Fort Worth, Texas.

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