Monday, July 28, 2008

The Interviewer Becomes The Interviewee!

The lovely young lady next to me is Tikla Brown, and I had the privilege of meeting her last year when I awarded her one of the Saipan Chamber of Commerce scholarships. I was very impressed with not only how intelligent she was, but with her level of self confidence and with her focus on her goals in life. She was quite a bit ahead of where most graduating high school seniors are at that point in their lives. As I had lunch with her and her parents at that Chamber of Commerce meeting, she asked if she could come in to the radio station sometime and interview me. She said that everyone always heard me asking all the questions, but no one really knew that much about me personally. She thought it would be great fun to come in and turn the tables on me and make me answer a bunch of questions, let people get to know who the real person behind the microphone was. I somewhat reluctantly agreed for a couple of reasons, #1 - I had never been interviewed before, at least not formally like this. Sure I've done job interviews and have spoken at schools where they asked me questions, but I've never done a one on one radio interview where I wasn't the one asking the questions. And #2 - I figured if anyone was capable of sticking me with some tough questions, it would be Tikla.


So I figured if we were going to do this, we might as well do it right, I even gave up my chair, and had Tikla sit at my microphone with all the controls at her fingertips. When she sat down she opened a notebook and had a page with a few questions written on it, I figured if that's all the questions she had I'd be fine. Unfortunately those were just the warm up questions, she had some real zingers coming up. She started off by asking some total strangers on the street if they could find anything out about Harry Blalock, what they would want to know? I was kind of surprised the strangers on the street had heard of me. Then she asked a few easy personal preferrence kind of questions. And then she finally got down to the heart of the interview after giving me a false sense of security. She was good, I had to admit. She said some people thought I was for contract workers getting permanent residency and some thought I was against it, she wanted to know what I really thought. She also asked what one thing that I have done I have really been happy with the results on. She made me prioritize the following things in my life: God, church, family and my job. And no that is not the way I listed them as priorities. I think it probably more of myself than I have personally exposed on the air in a very long time. I have to say it feels very strange being on the other side of the counter and having to come up with the answers to somebody elses questions. She also asked what the hardest part of my job was. I said it was mornings like that one, having to come in and do a show even though I was sicker than a dog and just felt like laying in bed and dying. But in radio we usually don't have that luxury, we have to come in and try to sound up and happy. Thanks Tikla, that definitely made for one of my more memorable experiences on radio.