Tonight, for the first time since I was 17, I don’t have to work on election night. I’m going to watch it on TV like the rest of the real world. Been looking forward to it since last May, when I decided to retire.
I participated this morning. First time I voted in Maine. Was cool. But tonight I won’t be rooting for or against anybody. ALL I care about is watching it take place.
In 1976, I co-anchored election night (with David Sager) on WERS Boston, my college station. Went late. Waiting and waiting for one last state to come in and put Carter over the top. President Ford had the flu, went to bed, not knowing. Carter’s victory speech took place in the middle of the night. We signed off sometime between 3 and 4. We must have done pretty well because The Boston Globe gave us a mention. (Apparently, the Winships were looking for radio coverage overnight and we were about it.)
In 1980, I got assigned to the shift everybody at ABC Radio News hated – except on election night when it was THE shift – 9p5t. I’m not even gonna explain it.
1984, ABC New York, worked the assignment desk. My most vivid memory was a couple of days before the election, assigning stories to Robert Trout. And then going over his copy with him!
1988 Anchoring at WFTQ Worcester, MA.
1992 Doing hourly news on Monitor Radio.
1996 Covering Bob Dole’s headquarters in Washington for Monitor Radio.
2000 Host/Anchor WBZ’s special extended news coverage of the election night that never ended.
2004 Hosting the overnight talk show on WBZ.
2008 Hosting the overnight talk show on WBZ
40 years ago tonight I was clicking around but mostly watching Walter Cronkite. Tonight I’ll be clicking around but mostly watching Brian Williams. Only difference: there’s a lot more things to click around to these days.
I am pure spectator tonight! I’m making popcorn!