Sometimes fame happens when you least expect it or want it. My 21 seconds of fame knocked on my door sometime after lunch yesterday, during which I’d walked briskly in the moist, breezy air. At the time, I’d been thankful I’d chosen a simple pony tail rather than my usual hairstyle, and I hadn’t worried about the repercussions of humidity and wind. I would spend my afternoon in a cubicle anyway.
“Who’s there?” wasn’t necessary as the door was already open. The knock was just a courtesy.
“Sara, TV20 is here and they want to interview you about startup companies,” announced the receptionist.
As the marketing representative for the Innovation Hub, I am often asked to approve media coverage of the building, its events, and its tenants, but I have never had to represent the company on TV. Believe me, I tried to find an alternate, but my boss and the most likely of my colleagues were out of the office.
I immediately regretted my decision to spend more time in the pool and less time on my hair that morning as well as my failure to keep lipstick close at hand. I did not regret my time with Toastmasters.
I met the lovely camera woman from TV20, and she explained what she needed: Me. Alone in front of the camera. Speaking about startup companies and the business incubator where I work.
“Be gentle,” I said. “I’m not photogenic and this is definitely a bad hair day.”
The interview went fine. I returned to my office and said, “I’m a star!” Joking, of course.
One of my fellows sent me an email about work later and began with:
“Hi movie star (Jane Fonda, maybe?),”
Funny, funny, ha ha. I work with a bunch of comedians. Truth be told. I was a bit nervous representing the company. More than unruly bangs, I feared an unruly tongue. What if I’d said the wrong thing? I was half hoping my portion would simply be cut. More than half hoping no one I knew would be watching. But when I got home from work, I told my husband and my son that I’d been interviewed by TV20.
“When are they running it?” my husband asked.
Of course, I hadn’t thought to ask that question. I assumed it would play that evening.
My son merely went into the den and turned on the TV, sprawled in a chair, and began watching the local news. Not exactly normal fare for him; it was a nice gesture.
My husband and I joined him, and my husband warned me that my interview might not appear, which would have been perfectly fine with me.
But suddenly, there I was, front and center. Other than beginning with “um” (sorry to fail you, Toastmasters!) it was OK. My son and my husband approved; my husband rewound the DVR and played it again. He seemed proud of me, and before I left for work this morning, he told me the TV20 website had posted the video. He later sent the link to his sister to watch.
I wondered if anyone else had noticed me on the local news.
This morning, I swam a mile at the health club and then hit the locker room. Immediately, one of my friends said she hadn’t seen me but she’d heard I was on the news last night. Another friend then asked me for my autograph. She’d caught the morning news just before slipping out the door for the gym. We were overheard by another friend, who actually works at TV20, and she said she’d bring me the DVD. Huh. This was kind of fun.
Though the weather promised to be rainy, I spent time on my hair this morning and attended to my attire, you know, just in case I were called for an interview…
I reached my office to find that someone — I still don’t know who — had taped a big yellow star with my name under it to the window leading into my office. It made me smile — and as people pass, they ask me why it is there, and I explain my TV “stardom.”
My 21 seconds of fame may not make me a star, but I’ve got one. Taped to my window. 🙂
My small part of the interview is within this story about IVy Creative Labs, a new startup in our building: http://www.wcjb.com/local-news/2016/01/local-tech-company-qualifies-startup-competition