Pay No Attention to That Man Behind the Curtain 2/21/07
The smoke and mirrors employed in television news
It was a great line from the Wizard of Oz. "Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain." It was the guy, creating the illusion of the great and powerful Oz.
We deal in a few illusions here in TV land, and I exposed one yesterday, live during the 4:30 Newscast. Our meteorologist Brian Gotter is a pretty tall dude. Far taller than am I. Primarily for framing purposes, they give me, and other shorter folks on the set, a little booster to stand on so things even out a little bit.
Frankly, I've never asked for that. I know I'm short! I survived a childhood of short jokes and blocked basketball shots. I'm at peace with it. To be clear, I'm not a mini-me or anything. I'm 5'6, but still a little shorter than your average guy. Nonetheless, they make me stand on the boosters.
So there. Now you know. It remains the most frequent reaction I get when I meet a viewer for the first time, "Hey, you're shorter in person." Yes I am.