I don’t know what I expected before I walked into DFW Hilton’s gift shop. Don’t get me wrong – they had all the necessities: shampoo, candy bars, tennis rackets, and Dallas Cowboys t-shirts…you know, the usual. On my list of priorities, sports shoes did not make the final cut.
Especially the size 25 shoe. You’re not that subtle, Babolat. After all, your main message must have been, “Look at me!”
You did your job. I looked. I touched. I fell in love with this gigantic tennis shoe.
I probably would have slipped it on, but I held back for the sake of my dignity. Unfortunately, I am not Cinderella. The “slipper” simply does not fit.
This also applies to how I feel when I walk down to our cute, tan, badly-lit room (for photos, not for learning) and pass by five or more people that are very, very successful. I feel very, very intimidated. But I guess it’s all part of the fun, watching these experienced journalists teach and learn at this conference.
It’s only been around 24-plus hours since I arrived at this hotel. In that time, I learned many things: copperhead snakes lurk around the hotel, it is not okay to show your source the final product before publication, the best stories can be found in tiny places like gift shops and good conversations arise when you ask good questions.
I was terrified several days ago while thinking about this workshop. I thought I didn’t know what I was getting into, that I wouldn’t get along with these other students, that I would “fail” some test. I also know I was wrong.
And that’s the key! It’s important to learn from your mistakes. It’s such a cliche, but I understand that now.
Sure, broadcast journalism makes me feel like I should run in the other direction. Yeah, my writing will have to meet a deadline and will never be as perfect as I imagined it all those weeks ago. Of course, I’ll say something dumb, or have to re-shoot, or miss a couple hours of sleep.
It’s alright. I’ll grab a cup of coffee and keep my chin up.
Like Hannah Montana sang, “Life’s what you make it. So let’s make it rock.”
Signing off, this is Katelyn Hoagland, UNT Multimedia High School Journalism Workshop.