Wednesday, February 16, 2011

On Doing Research and the Power of Seniority

So I finished my rough draft of RADIO STATIONS ARE FOR LOSERS yesterday.  Thank you, Ninja Ali for leading the way.  It needs a lot of revision.  That will be the next Ninja challenge on my list.  That being said, I would like to state "for the record" that no one is allowed to touch Therese's last line:

"Oh my God, PDA during finals?  Seriously, you guys need to get a room.  Do you even know how many people have been watching your little reunion?  I'm sure that last little tongue maneuver is going to end up on YouTube."

I have been basking in the term "tongue maneuver" for 18 hours.

Part of the revision process for me is doing some radio station research at my old high school.  I actually wrote a letter to the head of the station a few weeks ago:

Dear Mr. X,

I am a radio station alum who is writing a YA book called RADIO STATIONS ARE FOR LOSERS.  I was wondering if it might be possible for me to visit the station sometime to see how different it is to when I was Program Director there.  I appreciate your time and assistance.


I didn't hear back from them.  I know, you are probably as SHOCKED as I was.  Julio pointed out that I might have done without mentioning the title of my book.  Huh.

So after two weeks of waiting for a response (as if I weren't already obsessively checking e-mails for agent rejections), I finally had to go the direct route and call the administration.  (I was certainly not going to be blocked from research by a lack of response to my e-mail inquiry.)  The "administration" transferred me to the radio station phone line.

Mr. X:  Radio Station
Me:  Hello, Mr. X.  I am an alum of the radio station and I was wondering if I might take a tour of it.  (Note that I did not mention anything about my book or more specifically, book title.  I normally only need to be hit over the head once.)
Mr. X:  Sure.  What year did you graduate?
Me:  1992 (Shut it, Alyssa Milano and Madonna are older than me and they are both still hot.)
Mr. X:  Cool.  I graduated in 1997.

Hold the phone.  Hellooo...1997????...Game Changer!!!!  The head of the radio station is younger than me?  To some of you, this might be incredibly embarrassing.  Not so for those of us who have learned the power of presumed wisdom and seniority.  What is this power???

An example of the power of wisdom/seniority:

When Rebecca and I went to see New Moon at 7pm on opening night, we looked at the line of 11 year olds around the block and were SO not excited about waiting in it.  (I mean, really, I don't even wait in line for good movies.)  I told Rebecca to keep her mouth shut and follow my lead.  (She is an eldest child and therefore a total rule follower.  I have had to teach her many youngest child rule-breaking Jedi tricks).

I waltzed up to the front of the line and fell in with a group of older people who were evidently living under a rock and had come to see some other movie without the knowledge of the teen mayhem that was about to befall them.  I presented our tickets to the pimply ticket taker (what is that job called?).

Ticket Taker:  Oh, you're here to see New Moon?
Me:  Yes.
TT:  Well, the line is over there.
Me:  How old are you?
TT:  16.
Me:  I'm 36.  I don't wait in lines.  I wouldn't wait in line if the Grateful Dead were playing and Jerry Garcia was magically resurrected.
TT:  But...
Me:  Listen, I am way closer to death than most of the people in that line.  I am sure you see why I have no interest in waiting.  Plus, I need special accommodations. (On account of the fact that I am clearly INSANE for going to see New Moon on opening night with a horde of 11 year olds).
TT:  Oh, sorry, I didn't realize.
Me:  That's fine.  You can take my ticket now.
TT: Okay, it's Theatre 3.

See???  There is power in seniority.  So, obviously, I got myself all scheduled to "tour" the radio station. I almost considered talking Mr. X into letting me take a shift but luckily, I caught myself before I did it.  Because actually having to work at the station again (even for one shift) would sort of, you know, Suck.

1 comment:

Carrie said...

First: CONGRATS on finishing! You truly are a ninja.

Second: I LOVE Therese.

Third:'I am way closer to death than most of the people in that line'? That poor child! He didn't stand a chance. You are awesome.