Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Great Moments in Small Lives

Oh my gosh you guys, I got to talk to Melissa Harris-Perry on MSNBC. I know a lot of my friends and people out there on the internet want to know what that’s like. It started with a phone call notifying me MSNBC wanted to talk to me. Then I got to talk to Lorena Ruiz with the show. In two days, I would be going to Raleigh to appear on live TV.

Thank goodness for me it was a very busy two days. Having conversations is not my strongest thing. 300 words come into my head. There are a million ways to answer each and every question. And I would be talking to Melissa Harris-Perry. I was glad I had a lot to do that day. That night, I came out of a rehearsal and I saw that Feminist Justice League of North Carolina had pre-registered teenagers at a local high school that day, the last day of pre-registration for teens. They said my inspiration was one of the reasons they did it.

I spent the rest of that night feeling like I was in a dream. It was like all this was happening to someone I wanted to be in the future. Who is that girl I see staring straight back at me? I went and hung out and played Werewolf for a little while with friends before going home to sleep.

My mom went and got me Starbucks the next morning while I was in the shower. She got me a biscuit too, but I didn’t feel like eating much. I was so excited.  On the way to Raleigh I passed the time with social media. We got to the TV studio and I got to be the one hanging out in the green room for reasons for the very first time. After a little while Ann the makeup artist came. Meeting her was definitely one of the best things about the whole experience. Not only did I get to find out about her and her career, talking about another one of my passions for that time before the interview probably kept me from spazzing completely.

Then it was time to go to where television gets made. I never knew that those backgrounds they show behind people on the news are actually on a TV screen. I got my mic and my earpiece. I would need to do 10 more interviews like that to get used to that earpiece. Then it was countdown time. I started shaking. I was so nervous.

I heard Melissa Harris-Perry talking about protesters and people standing up for what they believe in. Then she started talking to me. Melissa Harris-Perry was talking to me. I just started talking like I was talking to any other person I had just met. That whole time I had to listen to what was coming into my ear, talk, and remember to look at the camera at the same time. I knew words were coming out of my mouth, but I had no clue at the time if I was even making sense. It felt like that moment took all of ten seconds. It went by so fast.

After the guy at the studio told me we were clear, I started crying. I really don’t know why I was crying but I think it was a combination of happiness and amazement at what just happened. Riding in the car on the way home I was getting all kinds of messages congratulating me. As soon as I got home I had to go straight to a class, so it was two more hours before I even saw the interview.

I still have a lot to learn about communicating well and improving my skills doing interviews. I am very thankful that Melissa Harris-Perry is so intelligent and such an easy person to talk to. I really admire her communication skills being able to sit on a panel and really make such good conversation and all the good points she makes. She makes it look so natural but there is a lot of hard work that goes into that. She’s such a great role model for girls like me and it was truly an honor to appear on her show.

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