Dispatches from a Reporter's Notebook

Holidays on the Clock

Posted November 23, 2006

I'm always amazed when people are amazed that television reporters have to work on holidays. Unlike many jobs, the news never stops. It continues twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, fifty-two weeks a year.

When you work on Thanksgiving you discover just how many other people work on this holiday. There are the obvious jobs- police officers, nurses, waitresses that also have no immunity. But then there are the less obvious jobs. More and more retailers are choosing to open their doors on Thanksgiving to get a leg up on the Christmas shopping season. Someone has to work the cash register, someone has to stock the shelves, and someone has to deal with the customers.

Being one of the senior members of the reporting staff I still have to work a holiday, but I get my choice of which one. I choose Thanksgiving. The reasons- I don't cook, I'm not a big turkey eater, and I don't watch football. My family is always invited to a lovely meal at a relative's house while I'm working. I lay out the girls' dresses, kiss them goodbye, and I'm off to work. It's actually not a bad deal. I'm home in time for dinner which is usually something very un-Thanksgiving, like pizza.

Granted, someday it would be nice to sit down to a Thanksgiving meal with my children the way I did with my parents when I was growing up, but at the same time I don't ever remember the day being much fun for my mother who had to do all of the work. So for now I'm just very thankful, thankful that I don't have to cook a turkey...
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About this Blog:

WRAL's Amanda Lamb offers a behind-the-scenes look at what TV news reporters do, the people they meet and how their jobs affect them.