Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Wild and Wacky Interviews (Part 2)

Monkeys Hair 

The live interview had not been going all that well. I was discussing my new book (at the time), Too Blessed to be Stressed, with a Pennsylvania Christian radio host whom I'll call Dale. 

I was a bit surprised to have a male interviewing me for my clearly delineated "women's inspirational book," but that happens from time to time, and I've truly had some quite excellent male interviewers mixed in with the clueless. 

As it turns out, Dale was of the latter category.

By the reluctance in his voice, hesitant questions, and silent responses as I threw out my normal women-oriented humor, I could tell he wasn't in his confidence zone. We weren't connecting. The magical rapport between host and guest that makes for the best interviews just wasn't there.

It was obvious to me that Dale hadn't even read my book, but was working his way through the Table of Contents using the chapter titles and associated topics (which were listed in parentheses) to formulate seat-of-the-pants questions.

The coup de grace came during the final five minutes of the 15-minute interview. As Dale slogged his way through the TOC to the last section, he came upon chapter 32, "Luther's Legacy." I could hear the sunrise in his attitude and relief in his voice. At last, he was thinking, Something I can sink my teeth into.

"I see, Debora, that you've got a chapter here on 'Luther's Legacy,'" Dale observed almost gleefully. "I've done extensive study on the works of Martin Luther. Why don't you tell us about Luther's legacy as it applies to handling the stress in our lives."

There was nothing to be done but to break it to him as gently as possible. On the air. In front of thousands of his regular listeners.

"Um, Dale. I'm sure Martin Luther had a lot of wonderful things to say that would be applicable to the topic of stress, but this particular chapter is about a monkey. A monkey named Luther." 

It shouldn't have come as a surprise that when I later asked the station for a copy of the interview that they'd assured me would be taped, somehow the the recording machinery had developed a glitch and the interview was lost.

Go figure.


Anonymous said...

Classic radio! Thank you for your humor and inspiration. Say hi to Luther for me!
Rick Christensen