Daily Archives: January 17, 2009

The Escape Pod on NPR

NPR’s Marketplace program did a story about client OfficeMax’ new female oriented marketing and product strategy. Bob Thacker and I were intervied. I managed to get two sentences into the interview. But I don’t sound nearly as nervous as i imagined i’d sound. so that’s good. you can hear it here.

if you’ve never been interviewed (by phone usually) on the radio, you probably imagine it as i once did, that it’s just like chatting on the phone. it’s not. and this only hits you right before you go on the air.

i have been interviewed on the radio several times and each time i’m surprised. the first times i was interviewed were based on my budweiser work which was receiving a ton of publicity. so i got interviewed a lot. but mostly by US media outlets (Newsweek, People, The New York Times, you name it). which would have been fine but for the fact that my family in ireland never saw any of this. so after a while, i realized my power and requested that the agency PR machine get me something in ireland. and by “something” i meant getting something into the local paper. just to annoy the haters really. but how was our PR maven to know what i meant? she just heard “get me something in ireland”.

but what happened next was way out of proportion to my wishes. I get a phone call while shooting in LA.

Our PR person rattles off a list of Irish radio DJs that will be calling me later that night (ireland is 8 hours ahead of LA). So i go to dinner and come back to the hotel and don’t sleep a wink. and then at two a.m. ireland’s national radio network calls my room. i pick up the phone and only then do i realize that i’m actually quite nervous. and only then do i imagine all the haters back in ireland laughing at my pathetic performance on national radio. and ireland is a big radio country – we love to chat. and i freeze up. literally. i can’t breathe, much less talk or think.

and so the irish radio producer is telling me exactly when i will be live on the air and what to expect. and i’m kind of grunting replies. it’s terrible. i’m on the verge of just hanging up and running away when i have an idea. i walk over to the minibar and open one of those tiny bottles of cognac. and swig it all back. it burns my throat and induces involuntary breathing. i’m finally breathing! next step talking! and my blood is flowing again. and i somehow make it through the interview. a second tiny bottle of cognac might have been opened and consumed.

my family back in Ireland loved the interview. and i collapsed in a heap on the bed. radio is hell!