Yesterday a friend of mine, Lorrie, emailed me to say she would be doing a live phone-in radio interview in California and asked me to tune in (it was live feed on the Internet) and call in during the show if possible. The program was scheduled to start at 1 in the afternoon, so around 12:35, I tuned in and listened while shuffling through paperwork.
The host and phone-in callers were talking about Imus, of course. I mean, who wasn’t talking about Imus yesterday—Anyway, the more they talked about the man the more fired up they got, and it soon turned into a free-for-all with everyone talking over everyone else. The whole time this is going on I’m thinking, “Lawd, how in the hell is Lorrie going to ever get through this hype?”
So how did she get through the hype once it was her turn to get on the air??? She didn’t. The host was so wired up by the time Lorrie got on it was as if she’d become Imus’ evil twin. (The host, not Lorrie.) First the woman sounded pissed because Lorrie was calling in instead of being there physically, then she proceeded to ask her some ridiculously asinine questions that were demeaning and belittling. Lorrie, being the ever-graceful Southern lady, did her best to stay calm and answer the questions. During her answers, however, the host proceeded to play sound effects that sounded like monks chanting or cartoon characters zipping around the studio. Lorrie stopped in mid-answer, asking the host to please kill the sound effects so she wouldn’t feel like she had to shout over their volume. So what does Ms. ‘Host’ do in response? She turns the volume of the sound effects UP.
While this is going on, I’m dialing my phone like a mad woman, trying to get through to the radio station, determined to rip this woman a new asshole…. Continuous busy signal….What in the hell was this ‘host’ trying to prove anyway? That she could take Imus’ place? That because Imus spoke from his ass instead of his brain she’s got to make other people of the same skin color ‘pay’? GRRR! I swear I could have chewed boards and spit nails I was so pissed off at this woman. Poor Lorrie hung in there, though, never once raising her voice, not one cross word coming out of her mouth. Thankfully, because the previous Imus discussion had run over its allotted time, Lorrie’s interview time slot was cut short. Not that any time mattered because the host kept cutting her off, never letting her completely answer any question.
Now I’ve done quite a few radio and television interviews over the years but I’ve NEVER come across anything as bizarre or any host as mean-spirited as this. It’s a good thing I wasn’t her guest yesterday (or ANY day for that matter) ’cause the woman would have either had to hang up on me or have all her listeners hear my loud lecture on her badly needed attitude adjustment!
How would you have handled this situation? What’s the worst interview you’ve ever experienced?