Filed under: Cool Things, Identity, Work | Tags: gay, middle east, talent
Back in 2003-2006 I tried to become on camera talent. More precisely, I wanted to be the “gay Kelly Ripa.” I took classes from Mediabistro, pitched myself as a guest on news programs when I was a legitimate expert on something, made a demo reel and sent more than a hundred of them out to local news outlets whenever I saw openings on TVjobs.com.
I worked very hard at it and wound up getting a job offer to be a weekend reporter and weeknight producer from KBMT-TV, the ABC affiliate in Beaumont, TX. But the offer came in six months after I had an epiphany on my 36th (double חי) birthday that just because I had the skills to become on-camera talent, didn’t mean I had to do it. It was enough for me to know that in a parallel universe – right now – I AM Anderson Cooper.
Interestingly though, last week my new friend Russell told me about his website GayMiddleEast.com and how they are looking for new (English-speaking!) on-camera talent for short news-packages and interviews on the site. Today I met with Russell’s partner Shabi to discuss my involvement in the project. The meeting went very well. Shabi and I hit it off. We’re going to turn articles already up on the site into short TV news scripts, which I’ll do the voiceovers and standups for. We’ll also put them up on YouTube. You know what? GREAT !!
Even weirder, also this week my friend Eyal called me out of the blue and told me he heard of an opening from his friend who works for Israel’s channel 2 for a reporter on their English news program. It’s weird, b/c I am hardly in contact with Eyal, and he certainly wouldn’t have known about this GayMiddleEast thing. And really, the on camera TV stuff hasn’t been on my radar since that 2003-06 period. But that’s around the time I met Eyal, so maybe he was thinking of that. Still, the timing of it all seems rather…sync’d and cosmic, yah?