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Saturday, April 19, 2014
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Published: 10/25/2005

Is hurricane coverage full of guts or full of gusts?

Did I actually see this on TV, or (cue dreamy New Age music) was it just a dream .?

•

TV ANCHOR: "It's 7 a.m. here in New York. Welcome to The Early Good Morning Today Show. We've got a lot coming up for you later on this morning. Stay tuned if you want to see the amazing video we have of Karl Rove's messy garage. Plus, we've got two surfboard-riding squirrels to show you.

"And on Consumer Beat, our report about a terrifying phenomenon you need to know about: Killer weed whackers that can explode at any time!

"But first, the news.

We turn to Robert Reporter, who's standing by live in Florida as Hurricane Wilma comes ashore. Robert, what's it like there?"

(Cut to: Drenched reporter in a brightly colored Gore-Tex parka with prominent network logo. Reporter struggles to stand upright; hangs on for support to a nearby palm tree that is bent in nearly half. He shouts into the microphone while the winds roar and horizontal rain lashes his face.)

REPORTER: "I'm here on this dark beach in Naples, Florida. Because it's not dawn yet, and because our camera only has one itty-bitty light, you can't actually see just how fierce this hurricane is.

"But just behind me, the ocean is a powerful threat, and these winds are so strong I can barely stand. Back to you in the studio!"

(Cut to: The anchor, chuckling with fond concern while he settles back into a plump sofa with a steaming cup of fresh coffee. Probably Kona. Maybe Guatemalan Antiguan.)

ANCHOR: "That was Robert Reporter, live in Naples, Florida. Be careful out there, Robert! Maybe you should go inside. We go next to Key West, where Rochelle Reporter is standing by live.

"Rochelle, what's it like there?"

(Cut to: The drenched reporter in brightly colored Gore-Tex parka with prominent network logo. Her hood is off; the camera shows her blinking and squinting against the driving rain. She holds the mic with one hand, and with the other, she slicks back unglamorously dripping hair.)

REPORTER: "It's really blowing hard here in the Keys. As this hurricane comes ashore, it's snapping power lines and trees, and raising concern over the predicted storm surge. As I stand here - ouch! Excuse me, some palm fronds just blew into my eye, and quite possibly I am now blind - but again, as I stand here, I can barely, uh, stand here.

"These driving winds are blowing me over, so before I fall down, let me send it back to you in the studio! Aiee!"

(Cut to: The anchor, putting down the coffee cup and assuming a serious expression.)

ANCHOR: "That was Rochelle Reporter, reporting live from the Florida Keys with all the crucial information you need this morning about Hurricane Wilma.

"Moving on to other news, Congress is expected to probe new allegations that TV networks have joined forces with Gore-Tex manufacturers in a secret parka price-fixing conspiracy."



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