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Too bad life doesn’t come with an ‘edit’ button

POSTED: April 25, 2012 4:00 a.m.

I am beginning to think me and microphones don't mix well. It seems like if I am around one, you better hope like the dickens there's a way to edit afterwards.

Starting as a small child in my first of only two pageants, Mama made the mistake of telling me what every mother tells her child backstage.

"You are the cutest child here; you've got this in the bag!"

When I was paraded out in the front of the entire audience, the emcee asked me if my dear sweet Mama had given me any words of encouragement.

I smiled, looking at the crowd of about 200 people, grabbed the microphone with a confidence I didn't possess and said: "She told me I am the cutest kid here and I have this one in the bag!"

Mama, of course, shrieked from her seat, as the rest of the audience either laughed or gasped in horror at Mama saying it and me repeating it.

Flash-forward about 25 years later, I had to go on the local radio station to promote a store event. Calling in from home at about 6 a.m., I hadn't even had coffee when my buddy Steve, the morning deejay, greeted me on the phone.

"So what event are ya'll hosting this weekend?" he asked.

I told him, stifling a yawn.

"Now, this is at Belk, right? You're still with Clinique at Belk?" he asked.

An honest question - I had worked with Clinique at another department store previously and thought Steve was just clarifying.

"I am for now. I am seriously looking for another job though; they just don't know it yet," was my groggy answer.

Silence.

Dead air in radio is really, really bad.

"Steve," his co-host Becky began, "I don't believe Sudie knew we were live and on the air."

I gulped.

Hours later, when I went into work, my store manager Ken was waiting for me. It was news to him I was looking and he had gotten up at 6 a.m. just to listen to me on the morning show.

You would have thought I knew better, at least about some things, when I worked in radio.

You know how you can't yell fire in a crowded theater?

Apparently, you can't yell fire in a radio commercial either.

Something about the FCC - or that was the gist of what my friend and former boss KJ informed me after he heard it play all weekend, during the UGA game coverage.

Or at least that's what I think he said. He was pretty upset, so it was hard to follow.

The commercial, thankfully, was re-cut, minus me screaming fire. And whoever produced my spots made sure they paid careful attention to what I said in them from then on out.

I probably could use an edit button for my mouth all the time, not just when around a microphone.

Maybe if I can find one, I can get a button to PhotoShop me too.

Sudie Crouch is an award-winning humor columnist and certified life coach. She lives in the north Georgia mountains with her family and four insane, but fairly well behaved dogs.

 

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