Check it, Peons: Your CNN Humiliation Compartmentalized

Monday, February 12, 2007


Today I'd like to sing (or maybe just hum) the praises of a former VJ who shall remain anonymous. It isn't because he parlayed his bootcamp stint into a great career within the company. Quite the opposite. No, it's because he managed to squeeze everything out of his work experience in a way that most of us hapless, broke VJ's could never imagine.

This guy was working a shitty overnight shift, just like me. Most people glumly accepted this fate and just bitched and moaned until they got a shift change or a promotion. Not him. He knew that life was to be seized and savored. Not even Ted Turner could deter him. He was a charmer. And on this lousy, soul-crushing shift, rumor had it that he was sleeping with two women. One blonde and one brunette. Both hot.
But no, I'm not talking about a threesome.
It was sex in shifts.
Most curious was that sex with these hot women regularly occurred on his waterbed.
How anyone could get one hot woman (let alone two) to have sex with them ON A WATERBED in the late 1990's is a mystery. Women will put up with sub-par decor in their boyfriend's apartments, but since 1982 most of us have drawn the line at waterbeds.
Not these women. He'd pretty much wake up in the bed with one of them, then on his evening break he'd go sleep with the other one. He'd come back to work stoned and spent. Then he'd get someone else to do his work. Then he'd flirt with girls. Then he'd sleep. Then he'd watch TV. In the morning before leaving for home, he'd flirt with more girls.
This man was seriously living large on a $20,000 a year salary. He was the P.Diddy of VJ Land.
This was the sweet life he led for several months. He was fired only when he chose not to show up for work one day and instead attended Jazz Fest in New Orleans.
He assumed that one of his co-workers would cover for him, but neglected to tell her that. I guess not everyone appreciated his "joie de vivre" like I did.
What I found inspirational, our boss found fireable.
Captain Waterbed remains one of the only people I've ever known to be fired as a VJ.
And that is a true mark of distinction.


J said...

He had some of the best parties I ever attended as a CNNer. Lots of free booze and pot. He was both cheesy and charismatic at the same time.

I drove him to work a couple of times on the overnight shift. Once, upon arriving at his hippy-clad house, where he'd be on the roof smoking a fatty, I stepped out to yell his name. He was high as a kite and didn't hear me, so I walked across the yard to get his attention. He came down from the roof, got in my car, and we both smelled a horrid stench. Turns out I stepped in a huge pile of dog poo on his yard, and spent the first hour of my shift in the bathroom scraping poo out of the grooves of my black Payless Shoe Source rubber-soled grunge boots. Oddly enough, I just couldn't get upset about the situation. We both laughed about it for several months.

Pot, poo and good times. That's what being a VJ was all about.

-VJ Hoolia

J said...

I happened to recall one more amusing tidbit about our Captain Waterbed. On April 15th, 1990-something, our beloved Captain filed his taxes at 11:55pm. With 5 small minutes to go before the metro USPS closed, he wrote on his blank 1040ez form "THIS IS NOT COMPLETE", folded it up with his W2, put it in an envelope and mailed it. That is how he filed taxes. He just, sort of, didn't.

Really, he's the only person who could or would ever attempt something like that. I believe he received some sort of letter a few months later, saying that he had been given an extension to get his taxes together properly. Who knows if he ever did. And something tells me, whatever he chose to do...he got away with it.