Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Target Practice

The past few morning as I’ve smoothed out my pantyhose for work, I’ve made a real effort to watch the local news. Originally, I was only interested in staying abreast of Texas politics as well as all the stabbings and such in my neighborhood, but I’ve found a special diamond in the rough, shaped as meteorologist Zach Shields. Mr. Shields or “Lightning Zach” as I will now refer to him has done nothing to receive my abrasive attention other than being the man that he is, but since I am bitter and envious over the success of people who think only on a cosmetic level of awareness, I’ll gently scratch at him. Lightning Zach is a regular fellow, a man of East Texas, judging by his regional drawl, and he’s a self-proclaimed Aggie as the “About Me” section of his fascinating Fox 7 profile admits. Mentioning his proud Aggie-ness may seem insignificant to a person outside the borders of this glorious state of Texas, but to natives, the word is synonymous with incestuous redneck. I don’t mean graduates of A&M, of course. I mean Aggies*. Despite his presumably degenerate lineage, he seems like an okay guy. I can’t vouch for his weatherman abilities, though, because what keeps me attentive during his report is the wonderful child exploitation the news network has obviously pushed upon him. Every morning, some poor 7-year-old bastard gets to read the high and low temperatures of the Austin area under Lighting Zach’s guidance. The unintended jewels of this family-capturing gimmick (called Zach's Kidcasters) is that Lightning Zach has absolutely no idea how to interact with a child, and every morning, I see a new kid sitting rigid and fidgety in Lightning Zach’s oversized office chair. Zach sits beside the kid and asks the little animal patronizing questions meant to reach it at a common level and establish a short but comfortable TV relationship. The result is a painful awkwardness from both people that effectively halts my morning routine and demands my undivided attention. So, I guess Fox has achieved its marketing goal, albeit through a Bizarro parallel, because Lightning Zach and his adolescent accomplices have become the source of meteorological entertainment.

*I would also like to add that Lighting Zach has qualified his Aggie heritage by recognizing its implications and marrying a Longhorn in an attempt to produce a weather-predicting Minotaur.

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