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Your First Time

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by HeinekenMan, Oct 21, 2006.

  1. da man

    da man Well-Known Member

    Oh, yeah, now for my real story. I was a know-it-all kid and had just been given my first NFL beat job (I said beat job ... snicker), and the first thing I covered was a mini-camp for rookies and free agents. A few veterans had also reported as well, including the starting QB, who was going to be pushed for his job by the team's first-round draft choice.

    So I was talking to a veteran tight end who was in camp, with the veteran QB sitting nearby. I asked the TE why he was at this mini-camp, and I said, ``Well, I know why (veteran QB) is here. Why are you?''

    The QB heard me and stalked over. `Yeah?'' he said. ``Why am I here?''

    I stammered, ``Because they just drafted a hot-shot quarterback and you're trying to keep your job.''

    QB sneers at me. ``If the quarterbacks aren't here,'' he said with a derisive laugh, ``who's going to throw for all the passing drills?''

    I shut up and slinked away.
  2. BYH

    BYH Active Member

    My first-ever experience with someone juggling his johnson as he answered my questions was...a kid who grew up down the street from me. I was two years ahead of him and he ended up being one of the football team captains his senior year. After a big win, I went into the locker room to talk to the players and he was there, naked as the day he was born. He stared intently at me the whole time and worked it something fierce with his right hand. And I stared intently at him, because the alternative was too frightening to ponder, and all I can think is "I used to trade baseball cards with this guy and now he's fondling his balls as he talks to me."
  3. mike311gd

    mike311gd Active Member

    Last year, I was doing a feature on a member of the Chicago Bears, so I wanted to talk to a few players. I make my way over to Urlacher before anyone else does. He's changing, so I ask him if he has a few minutes, and he tells me, "After I finish dressing, you got it."

    By that point, everyone had made their way over to him, leaving me on the outside looking in. Knowing that my questions had nothing to do with what happened in the game, I let everyone else pick away. He was cool enough to talk with me for a few before the PR guy snagged him away.

    After that, I asked Kyle Orton if he had some time: "Nah, man, I'm done."

    Just like his career.
  4. fatking

    fatking New Member

    My first time was in the Spurs' locker room. I was young and, honestly, asking David Robinson some mindless questions. I'll be damned if didn't sit there and patiently answer every single ridiculous question I had for him. And a smile never left his face. He was my first encounter with a professional athlete, and I still haven't been around anyone more genuine.
  5. Tom Petty

    Tom Petty Guest

    ding, ding, ding, we have a winner. s

    started covering the pac-10 and the pros my first year along with the preps. biggest cocksuckers out there are, indeed, high school football coaches.
  6. RedCanuck

    RedCanuck Active Member

    The one that sticks out most vividly in my mind was the first time I interviewed Brian Kilrea, the legendary junior hockey coach. I was doing a feature on his assistant coach Bert O'Brien for a j-school class and I snagged him after practice.

    He had done this so often, he just had this imposing stare going and was so prepared and I felt myself fumbling around to come up with questions. Probably the most intimidating interview I ever did.

    Another time, he chewed me out for catching him after practice as he was going to be late for the Sens game that night, but he still stuck around and candidly answered every question. As much as he bellows, he was a good guy to work with.
  7. ronalong

    ronalong Guest

    A few years back I covered a charity golf event where Johnny Unitas, Billy Kilmar and Bart Starr played for charity. I interviewed Johnny U. My heart was racing. I got through it and he probably thought I was a bid idiot. However, a more exciting interview was one I did as a fill in for a news staffer who was on vacation. Dale Bozzio, the lead singer of Missing Persons, was in town doing a concert. She was famous for once wearing a Plexiglas bra. Wow, I was a nervous wreck asking her questions. I had lusted after this chick as a teenager and now I was interviewing her! She was still hot.
  8. In Exile

    In Exile Member

    First time with a credential, first time in a locker room, I interviewed Ted Williams before an Equitable Old-Timer's game at Fenway in 1986 (I think). I had hair down to my ass and though Williams would blow me off, but he was great, and answered everything I asked., even as he teased Jim Rice about his tennis game in between questions.
  9. GuessWho

    GuessWho Active Member

    I had (and have) spent most of my career covering mainly basketball and football. About a million years ago I had to do some MLB stuff and felt like a cub reporter again. I wasn't sure of the protocol, and didn't know much about the players. So I tentatively walked up to a well-known (at the time) player in the dugout during BP and asked if we could talk.

    It was Bobby Bonds. He seemed to sense my awkwardness and invited me to sit down. He gave me 30 minutes of one-on-one time and probably was the nicest gentleman I've ever met in this business. A total class act. Too bad it didn't rub off on his son. Man, the apple fell far from that tree.

    Anyway, that encounter was more than 30 years ago and I've never forgotten it.
  10. ballscribe

    ballscribe Active Member

    Kilrea was the main man on my first "beat".
    Imagine my trepidation. Figured I would be dealing with Archie Bunker every day. As a woman, green as hell, I was sweating.
    He was unbelievable to me, even invited me back after every game to the congregation of old-time hockey guys, who would knock back beers and talk about the game for hours on end. Learned more in those sessions than I can even recall. Won't ever forget his kindness.
  11. Songbird

    Songbird Well-Known Member

    Wasn't my first "big" interview, but it was during the early years and provided one of the funnier moments. At the 1991 Mt. SAC Relays, Carl Lewis wins his 100-meter race in a breeze. Earlier in the day one of the local kids I'm covering, Ricky Carrigan of Compton, the 2nd-fastest prep sprinter in the country, tells me he can whip Carl's ass and that I should tell Carl that if I interview him. Typical 17-year-old bravado. So I'm asking Carl about this and that, and at the end of the interview, with Carrigan watching, I point to him and say "you know, Carl, that kid thinks he'll whip your ass." Carl laughed while looking Carrigan's way. I told Ricky what I told Carl and he was like "Man, why'd you say that?!"

    One other moment early in my career, I was sent to some kind of Dodgers lunch function at Dodger Stadium and sat at a table with the clown prince of baseball, and Boog Powell. Not more than 5 minutes into lunch Powell lets off a fart that damn near suffocated everyone in the room. Terrible, terrible, terrible.
  12. SF_Express

    SF_Express Active Member

    It's funny, I don't remember my first, but two stand out.

    One was Eric Heiden, after the five golds, at a bicycling race. I was nervous as hell -- and only had known him, his sister, his whole family for years. His father was my orthopedist. I was four years ahead of him in school age. He said, "What the hell is wrong with you?" I told him I had no idea.

    The other was Don Shula. One-on-one set up by our beat writer. I was doing a feature on how scoring was up in the NFL because of some things the competition committee had done, and were league traditionalists worried that it would become the NBA of football (at the time, the high-scoring parallel was valid with the NBA).

    I sit down and start my inquiry, and Shula stops me. It was Tuesday morning. He said, "What was the score of that Monday night game last night," and I say, "Bills 9, Patriots 3" (or similarly low-scoring). Gulp.

    "Two pretty good teams, right?" he said.

    Gulp. Yep.

    "Where was all the scoring in that one?"


    And then he says, "I know exactly what you're talking about," and gave me a half-hour of great stuff.
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