Just go to the camcorder section of your local electronics store and you'll see that the desire to be on TV remains strong in an American public determined to prove that they got talent, despite what that bastard Howie Mandel might say. People want their 15 minutes, and aside from various talent competitions, there are any other number of televised ways to get it, including agreeing to simultaneously date the same person as 30 other people, eating goat intestines or, most disgusting of all, being from New Jersey. But for those looking for a different approach, there is the old fail-safe, the local news. No matter who you are, no matter what you look like, no matter what grade school you nearly graduated from, the local news will find you and they will put you on the air. For those still waiting for their big break, here are a few ways to turn the dream into reality. Real reality, not the kind where you have to live trapped in a house with no clear walkways due to an overabundance of Troll dolls.
Star in a roll of file footage: File footage used on local news broadcasts has not changed in roughly 33 years, which explains why that scientist they filmed looking into a microscope in 1983 is currently retired and living quite comfortably off the fat royalty checks he receives every time a story loosely related to science airs. But these days, the real money is in footage of the rotund. Obesity continues to be a troubling issue in our country. That's great news for the big-boned among us who want to be on TV, but just don't like the connotation or exercise invoked by "The Biggest Loser." A population that continues to be dangerously overweight means that the subject will continue to be a topic of discussion on the news. Which in turn means the continued use of footage of the overweight sitting while eating, walking around while eating, and eating while eating. Sure, the footage just shows a series of protruding bellies, cutting off the subjects' heads so that no faces are visible, but that's easily fixed by simply making sure the torso sections of all muumuus are emblazoned with the wearer's name.
Be an eyewitness: You live across the hall from the hero parakeet that dialed 911 when its owner choked on some Combos, now it's time to tell the world the story.
Be an investigative reporter: You've never been afraid to confront people or force your way into somewhere you're not welcome. Now get paid for it and live without fear of violating the numerous and varied court mandated safe-distance clauses in your restraining orders.
Become a historian/expert in something: There's an expert for everything these days, and the 24 hour new cycle means the opportunities to get some face time are ample. Of course, this is easier said than done. Let's face it, at this point, you're probably not going to be a foreign policy expert or aviation historian, but you can be an expert in cartoon cereal mascots, who you've spent untold amounts of time analyzing and for whom you've constructed elaborate, imaginary backstories. For instance, did you know that that the original Crackle (of Snap, Crackle and Pop) was killed in a bar fight with the Keebler Elf?
Stand outside the window waving: We've discussed this before, and although I'm not sure I'll ever understand the appeal of it, the option is there if you're looking for the quickest way onto the news. Try appearing in the window for days at a time during multiple broadcasts to really drive home your call for help to family and friends. (Note: Members of the Channel 7 News Team are not your friends.)