For decades folks have gotten their news condensed…factoids gathered up, picked at and chosen by journalists, summarized, and passed on as ‘”THE NEWS” to the waiting audience.
Rarely does the audience have the opportunity to fully experience breaking news in the way that field journalists do – until live TV came along (now streaming video on the Internet).
Unless it is 911, most news is the traditional “hours and hours of tedium punctuated by moments of sheer terror (or joy).” Waiting for the moment…the few seconds that generally makes the top of the show.
Ongoing all over the world right now: streaming video of the rescue of 33 Chilean miners. In real time. It will take two days to bring them all up to the surface…about an hour for each to wait for the capsule, get outfitted, climb in, take the agonizing ride up to fresh air and family.
I sat through some of the rescue…with the same anticipation as the rest of the world, but also in my mind reliving moments past. Stakeouts…sitting for hours waiting for the perp, the announcement, the arrival. Tragedies…generally the aftermath, again waiting for announcements and movement. Relaxed boredom with tensed muscles. Mind in meditative mode, ready to grab gear and run. No matter what the conditions, the weather, the situation…waiting with coiled springs ready to release and capture the moment…for replay in less than a minute thirty. The chewed up, edited, regurgitated version will be compelling and full of drama and allow the audience to hold their breath for a moment and move on. Unlike reality.
At least this time it ends happily.