The extensive coverage of this week’s heat wave reminds me of a time when I used a similar situation to my advantage as a reporter. My editors wanted me to get a quick comment for a story from the Governor (then Tom Kean) without any other reporters hearing the exchange.
Kean had a public appearance that day, and as was his style, he remained at the podium after the official part of the event was over to answer questions on a variety of topics from the State House press corp. Most of my colleagues were getting inserts for weather stories being compiled back in their home offices. The questions ranged from what the state was doing to how the Governor himself kept cool.
I waited patiently until all the weather questions were over and my fellow journalists were on their way back to their respective bureaus. Then I asked my question, got the quote we needed and relayed it back to our main office.
While the story was important at that time, I cannot today remember the topic, but I do recall the heat, so perhaps in the long run I really didn’t beat my competitors at all.