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The Marks Post: Broadcast News

I’m starting this column with the following preface. I hand wrote it Friday night at 12:30 a.m. I had just gone to bed after watching TV. The idea for this column hit me, so I got out of bed to put it to paper before I forgot what I wanted to write about. I realized over the New Year’s holiday that some ideas don’t flow really well, but I will use italics like this to better explain myself.
Friday night after I got back from covering the Oakdale basketball games in Mamou, I went home and watched a movie that I recorded on the DVR called Broadcast News.
It was the first time I have see it since college. A couple of us students from the Manship School at LSU got together to watch it with one of the professors after we got back from a trip to Dallas for the Texas senator and governor debates of 2002. When I was told that we were going to watch Broadcast News, I first thought we were going to actually watch broadcast news. But it’s a movie directed by James Brooks about a love triangle developing among a television anchor played by William Hurt, a television reporter played by Albert Brooks, and a television producer played by Holly Hunter.
The point of this column is not a movie review but a reflection on my time in college and where it led me to today. Honestly, I don’t know how I decided to go to college for mass communication. I remember my parents and I went to Tiger Day during my senior year of high school at Sacred Heart. It was a chance for us to tour the campus and to visit different colleges that we were interested in. Something led me that day to the Journalism Building.
After I started college, I really didn’t know what I wanted to do. I started out in electronic media but soon changed to a concentration in journalism. Then came the trip to Dallas when I decided to switch concentrations again to political communication.
I finished college and still didn’t know what I wanted to do. Something led me back home to Ville Platte where I started working at the Clerk of Court office. Thirteen years later, that same something led me to a full-time position here at The Gazette.
I oversimplified the path here, but I did so because the main thing to take away is I now know what led me here. It was not my will, but it was God’s divine plan for me. This is where he wants me to be at this stage in life.
Here is where I should make a point of clarification. I realize the above statement is probably a reach. I could have stated it better when I typed it, but I wanted to keep this as close to my original thoughts from Friday night for effect.
I know there are things I could have done differently in college that might have altered my life path to this point. I should have learned to drive sooner, I should not have let Mackenzie Smith get away, I should have asked girl A,B, and/or C out. I should have gotten an internship. I should not have said anything about Jack Hamilton’s ice box. Ok, that last one is more of a joke.
Jack Hamilton was John Maxwell Hamilton. He was the dean of the Manship School of Mass Communication at LSU while I was a student. He was an ex-Marine who claimed that his grandfather invented the golf tee. Nobody questioned him about it, as far as I know, because, as I said, he was an ex-Marine. I took his class during my last semester in college, and he hosted a party for us at the end of the semester. Towards the beginning of the night, we were all gathered in his kitcken. I made a comment about his ice box, and everybody looked at me and asked “what.” I said, “I’m sorry. The refrigerator.”
The thing is if I would have or not have done anything on that list, who is to say I still would not have ended up back here where I am at now. In the end I am where I am supposed to be. As we enter the new year, I pledge to make my first full year as associate editor of The Gazette better than my first seven months. It will be eight months on Monday, January 8.
A lot of you are probably expecting a Night Court reference because I had not made one in a while. However, I’m going to end with a Broadcast News reference. Tom Grunick played by William Hurt tells Albert Brooks’ Aaron Altman character a rule that he made for himself. This is rule is a good one for me to use as associate editor, and it may be useful in your own life. Grunick said, “I made one rule for myself when this started, and I realized I was going to take a lot from you people because of being from sports ... Never to pretend to know more than I did.”

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