But seriously, while that's my job and I love it, there's more to me than that. For those who are so inclined, since many seem to be, I've spelled out the "how" here & in "What I'm doing with my life". Otherwise, you can scroll down to "Snapshots", as well as the other profile categories, to get to know the Mike behind the mic.
Also, I'm not paying for an account on here, so I can't see "Who Likes Me", so if you "Like" me, please send me a message. If you don't know what to say or you're really shy, you can just copy and paste this paragraph, and I can take it from there. :)
Back to the good stuff! Currently, I host and produce my own talk show. I do interviews with celebrities (phone, Skype, and in person) and highlight unique spots around the Chicago area that have a touch of celebrity. I *don't* do or talk gossip, nor do I follow people around with a camera (a la "TMZ", "Access Hollywood", or any of those rags).
Instead, I talk to my guests simply as one person getting to know another. My goal is to humanize them in such a way that they're brought down from that diamond encrusted pedestal on which society has hoisted them so that they're viewed by my audience as just people with interesting jobs, but people nonetheless.
The resulting interviews are often a mess of awkward, "what are we even talking about" fun, reminiscent of a first date, since I'm getting to know my guests along with the audience. I steer those conversations so that the guests' personalities come through, though, wherever possible, I let my "standard", scripted questions take a back seat to whatever living, breathing conversation takes hold. When done well, that steering is so subtle that it's almost invisible. My role is to introduce my guests to my audience and assist the latter in getting to know the former, which is made all the more difficult if I leave obvious fingerprints on everything.
Sometimes people see my program and do question if my presence is any more than a second banana to these guests. In response, I point out the minor ways that I take the conversation seamlessly to this topic or that one, while still letting the guests be themselves. Their time on my show is about them, not me. But I do still like my Mike-ness shine through.
It's silly, it's random, and I love it. The resulting memories, whether they make me cringe or laugh, are priceless.
I know that's a bit long, and possibly a bit (or a lot) more than you wanted or cared to know, but, like I said above, as much as I love what I do, there's more to me than just that, so, while I'm happy to discuss it (of course), I wanted to get that basic, stylistic stuff out of the way so we don't have to rehash it in our messages.
As a harder journalist, I've covered Air Force One landing (from 150 feet away), the Rod Blagojevich trial, and other events.
(Quick views into random aspects of my mind, life, and personality)
-When asked in physics class to list the 5 greatest inventions of all time, I wrote down only one: "Sliced bread". The teacher was not amused. I was.
-Poorly choreographed movie and TV show sword fights annoy me. The ones where the person puts theirs up to block the shot before the shot comes, but then the other person comes down right where the blocking sword is. It's like they're not even trying. I mean, how do you expect to win a sword fight by constantly hitting the other person's sword on purpose?
-My name on here is MiketheFirst because, back in high school, I would always add a Roman numeral I to the end of my signature, because: 1) it's accurate 2) I could. The "the first" stuck, and as such, I am Mike the First.
-While I understand why, it disappoints me that Apollo missions that aren't AS-11 & AS-13 are forgotten or ignored by a large portion of the public and that astronauts who aren't Neil Armstrong or "that guy Tom Hanks played in that movie" not only aren't household names, they aren't even in some modern US History books.
-I think the Billy Joel music videos for "The Longest Time" and "Uptown Girl" are randomly hilarious.
-Sometimes I have a mustache and beard. Sometimes I don't. Same goes for hair. (Seriously, I've been known to randomly shave my head for no reason other than "I felt like it".)
-I don't currently own any witty/humorous t-shirts, but part of me hopes to change that soon. The other part of me thinks they're a little over the top and don't serve my personality well.
-I give *amazing* presents.
-I have various collections of things that hold sentimental meaning to me, including artwork, autographs, books, and medallions.
-One of my biggest pet peeves is people who use "ect" instead of "etc".
-I have a habit of taking the labels off bottles & recycling them separately. I just think the bottles look better sans label.
-For a partnered persuasive speech in my university public speaking class, I convinced my partner to argue the age old question of whether The Bob Newhart Show was better than Newhart. It went over with the class about as well as you might expect.
-After my first year of college, I won a coin toss with my roommate for a poster of movie quotes that was hanging in our room. It's AWESOME.