Promotion pays the bills

2 Jul

More specifically….promotion of the Fox News Channel University website will pay for my subway fare for a month.

Support a child in need?

I am trying to beat all the other interns in getting the most “likes” on their facebook page. Nothing too complicated for you, I promise—Just CLICK HERE and then click ‘like’. All done!

 

How one subway ride can lead to a complete loss of faith in humanity

29 Jun

Subway stations are hot, the trains packed and the conditions dirty but regardless of having a sweat/water mix occasionally gush from the ceiling onto my head, I have little beefs to vocalize about subway conditions most of the time. They are fast, easy and get me where I need to go.

I do not lie about this dripping subway substance…yes that came from the ceiling

However, I am not quite so forgiving when it comes to the people on the subway who sometimes, to be quite frank, seem to lack any redeeming qualities.  Today, being the perfect example.

It’s the middle of rush hour when I get to Times Square and catch the subway but I somehow spot an empty seat on the last cart of the subway I’m getting on. It’s one of the ones where no one can sit next to you. An empty seat at the back…all alone. The perfect seat.  Thanking my lucky stars, I check there are no disabled, elderly or kids (yes- I honestly do this) to offer the seat to and I sit down. Everyone else rushes onto the subway…and remains standing.

Except one very large, very sweaty man. This man looks at me and sees that I don’t take up the entire seat. He proceeds to sit on the corner of the seat, which as being as large as he is, doesn’t work. Now, my perfect one person seat has turned into a 2 person seat, with a man about 300 pounds on my lap.

The woman standing near me looks shocked, confused and then disgusted. The man, now on my lap, doesn’t notice her glare or my exasperation or even, the awkwardness of the situation. Not knowing what to do, I stand up before the subway has even really gone anywhere. This man notices I am now standing, smiles to himself and scoots the rest of himself on the seat and falls asleep.

Fine, I thought. The next stop people will get off and a seat is sure to be available (my feet were killing me at this point after a day of trying to break in new heels). I was right, the next stop half of the subway empties and only 4-5 of us are left standing. 3 seats have opened. 2 next to each other. I notice an older lady going for one of them, so me and another woman go for the two next to each other. Too late, the man sitting next to the two empty seats sees it as a great opportunity to stretch out his legs. I exchange looks with the woman going for the other seat but neither of us say anything. Others on the train laugh, glare and stare. But no one says anything. Only a few more stops left.

Finally, I think the ridiculousness of the subway ride is over when I get OFF the subway, but this seems to be a never ending fiasco. On my subway stop there aren’t stairs, you have to take an elevator to the mezzanine. It’s really annoying when people run to an already full elevator and slam their arm through the doors as they close so they can get on—are you really in that big of a rush? But conversely, it’s just as annoying when there are very few people on the elevator and someone starts shoving the ‘close door’ button. Today, however, ONE woman gets onto the elevator, sees people behind her—slams her finger into the ‘close door’ button and goes up by herself. At this point I just laugh. About 50 of us wait. We get the same elevator up. 5 minutes later.

I love New York but sometimes I’m left in complete disbelief. Hopefully a good weekend will restore my lost faith.

A lesson from Dad

17 Jun

You can choose your friends…but you can’t choose your family [or their decisions in sporting camouflage onesies]

When I was 16-years-old and thought I was great at driving with less than a year under my belt, I missed a stop sign. Which I had probably done before with my 16-year-old expertise but this time a fairly large, yellow, transportation bus was coming the other way.

The slow motion scene out of Remember the Titans flashed through my mind and while I wasn’t paralyzed or ruin my career like in the movie, it still felt like the end of the world. When my Dad came, I waited for something- anger, sadness, fury…something.

Nothing…and then laughter.

“You said you didn’t SEE it?! Alex…it’s a bus, how could you not SEE it?!” I mumbled something about it being hidden by the bush at the end of the sidewalk and broke down crying…again.

He drove me home…in the newly transformed Freelander, now free from it’s passenger side windows. I think my dad could sense I was still waiting for something. An answer, a scolding, a ‘thwack’ round the head. “This happens, Alex,” he said, “You’re young. You don’t know how to drive and you weren’t paying attention. I knew this would happen…maybe not this soon but I was waiting for it.” Maybe he was covering his own butt—“knowing” he would do THIS to his own truck only a few years later but I think he knew I was already beating myself up enough, he wanted to show me that when crap hits the fan, you don’t have to panic. Life goes on.

Bye Bye truck!

Since I’ve been in New York, I think of what my dad has taught me all the time. To laugh when I get on the wrong subway. To let things go, to move on. I couldn’t ask for a better dad—Father’s Day or not, he’s always on my mind and I will always look up to him! Love you daddy.

 

Thinking back to Mother’s Day, as Father’s Day nears

14 Jun

Father’s Day is this weekend and all I can think about is my dad saying to my mom every Mother’s Day, “You’re not my mother, why would I get you anything?”  My dad, like myself, could care less about Hallmark holidays and even if my mother was his mother (don’t think about that too hard), he wouldn’t get her anything.

This year was particularly interesting as my father skipped out on getting my mother a present for “Mother’s Day” and then didn’t even mention the holiday in passing. And neither did I. Finally, after having enough of being ignored for the morning of “Mother’s Day”, my mother tells us that although it doesn’t matter to us, holidays matter to her- especially Mother’s Day. She then left the house, leaving her phone behind but taking her credit card.

I frantically tried calling her, emailing her and texting her but quickly found her phone was lying on the table, numerous calls missed and a single text from me saying; “What are you complaining about?! Mother’s Day is next week. Not today.”

Apparently my mother didn’t realize this until after her shopping spree. Mothers.

I would also like to add on the ACTUAL day of Mother’s Day- even after the fiasco of the Sunday before- my dad still did not buy a Mother’s Day present. Men. They never learn.

And to end the story- I bought my mother flight themed Mother’s Day gifts (crosswords, chocolate and things) since we were leaving for England the next day. Daughters. They are so thoughtful.

My mum, her dad, me (Happy Father's Day, Grandad)

My mum, her dad, me (Happy Father’s Day, Grandad)

Hitting the streets of NYC

13 Jun

As my third day winds down in New York, I feel like I’m starting to “get it” and by referring to “it”, I’m talking about the street etiquette of New York City. The rules of the road as a pedestrian in the “Big Apple” are somewhat similar to “Man Law”. No one tells you what to do and the rules aren’t written down, but your judged/shoved//looked at funny for not following the New York walking policies.

1. Expect your feet to quickly self-destructed. New Yorkers must have feet of steel. I, on the other hand, cannot walk more than 5 blocks in dress shoes without getting blisters. Graphic I know and that’s after I washed the blood off!  Image

2. Walk like the world is ending. The first 2 days in New York City I was sort of in limbo land of walking styles–somewhere between gawking tourist and New Yorker on the way to work. However, I’m quickly finding out that if you don’t walk like your being chased by a bear—New Yorkers do not like you and will not put up with you. It only to a few shoves, grumbles and pushes for me to understand this.

3. Wipe that grin off your face. From what I’ve seen, New Yorkers are extremely nice people but if they don’t know you–they don’t smile. It’s best to keep with this trend. Smiling at men on the streets seems to subject you to “oh that means she wants me to follow her down the street and ask her for her number and yell things at her/whistle”. This is not Montana. Everyone doesn’t walk around with a grin plastered on their face.

4. New Yorkers are magicians at producing umbrellas. When it rained yesterday, I swore I didn’t encounter one person with an umbrella but as soon as the rain hits–boom. Umbrellas. Until I discover how to conduct such magic—I need to carry a rain jacket. No umbrella for me. The etiquette for walking is hard enough right now, let alone for an umbrella.

A little summer rain

I thought I would be learning a lot in my internship, who knew there would be so much to learn outside of work!

Emmy Awards: My scholarship

7 Jun

On June 2nd, I accepted the Tricia Moen Memorial scholarship and now the video is online, if you missed the live broadcast. It’s such a moving scholarship and I am so proud. Her story, the presentation by her family and the love everyone has for her really brings tears to my eyes when I watch this. What a beautiful woman!

It starts at 93:40 and ends at 99:36 on the Emmy Awards Video which you can view by CLICKING HERE. I also encourage you to watch the whole show and the Student Award Presentation before the show because UM also won some awards!

Thank you (Tricia Moen Memorial Scholarship)

26 May

I made an acceptance/thank you video after winning the Tricia Moen Memorial Scholarship because unfortunately, I was in England and not able to accept the award in person at the Emmy Awards just outside Seattle. I couldn’t be more proud to be the first recipient of such a wonderful scholarship .

Tricia Moen was an amazing woman who died last year after battling cancer. You can learn more about her and the scholarship by CLICKING HERE.

This is what the press release said about the award:

‘RTV Senior Alexandra Schwier has awarded the inaugural Tricia Moen memorial scholarship from the National Association of Television Arts and Sciences-Northwest Chapter.  NATAS created this scholarship to Tricia Moen who was a young producer at KOMO television in Seattle when she died of cancer in 2011.

Alex was the unanimous choice of the panel of NATAS judges who interviewed finalists for the scholarship in May. In her interview, Alex most clearly articulated the role of the producer in the newsroom and clearly expressed her admiration for Tricia Moen. In her application Alex said: “Tricia Moen reminds me that you can never appreciate your producer, and your newsroom family too much.” Alex has honed her own skills as a producer  at the Montana Television Network where she has worked since high school, both in Bozeman and Missoula.’

Please watch the Emmy awards Saturday, June 2nd at 7p.m. by visiting NATAS.org. Her family will be speaking and presenting the award. I’m sure it will be very moving, Tricia won her first Emmy only a few days before passing away.

I wish I would have been able to meet her and also, be able to meet her family the night of the awards. This scholarship is so humbling to recieve.

Writing letters is underrated

25 May

As a broadcast journalist it’s funny to argue that the written word isn’t dying or dead but instead, more appreciated than ever before.

Although, I do feel newspapers have seen the best of their days and newspaper-style writing is now finding its niche online— It would be a mistake to assume the rest of the written word can transfer as meaningfully to the online environment.

In the last month I have written over 2 dozen thank you cards and about a dozen postcards. In the next few days, I hope to write atleast a dozen more postcards from England.

While the internet offers a fast way to connect and share information…it lacks the emotion and individuality of the written word.

Often I have to force myself to write on this blog because somewhere in the mess of things I end up feeling like i’m not really writing to anyone and for all I know no one but my mother reads what I write anyway.

With email, if my message isn’t sent into spam or glanced over, it still lacks emotion. It doesn’t take time to write an email. Forward, Copy, Paste…they are all only a few clicks away. A thank you letter isn’t personal when you know it could have been easily sent to 500 other people with a few words changed.

On the other hand, when I write a letter or a thank you card, I know the person I have written it to will take the time to read it and sometimes, even write back. My handwriting is crooked and smeared with crossed out words and probably a few misspellings, but it’s personal. Writing a letter is writing TO someone. Handwriting a thank you letter is personal.

An email doesn’t make someone smile or grateful the way a thank you card can. Gratitude is never the same through a text or email. Today, sending a letter or writing a thank you can set you apart and show that you really care.

I keep every letter and thank you note I recieve. I will never forget the kind words said to me and when I’m having a bad day it isn’t the ‘locked texts’ or old emails I look through, but the personal letters.

I have the best friends, the best co-workers and the best family and they deserve more than a quick email or text of ‘thanks’ for all they have taught me and done for me in my life.


The world has discovered Montana

22 May

Usually when I travel, the word `Montana` requires an explanation. In the state, we joke that others in the U.S. think we ride our horses to school and don’t have electricity. And in Europe, it’s unusual to find someone who can find Montana on a map (just like it is unusual in the United States to find someone who can identify somewhere other than London on a map of the U.K.)

However, as of late, Montana has grasped both national and international attention for some very contraversial reasons.

While flying through the U.S. (since Montana doesn’t offer flights to Europe), Montana was not just known—but it’s where many were flying to and from. In Minneapolis, I met two men in the airport, who had just left North Dakota. Another man on the flight to Atlanta had worked in Montana and North Dakota for years. They had all visited Missoula, knew Bozeman and Big Sky and had lived near, or in, Eastern Montana.

The oil boom has hit. And Montana is now on the map as the place to be for (mainly) young, single men. All three men I met, spoke about the insane work days, 12 hour minimums, and also, the incredible amount of cash they were bringing home after working in the oil fields. For me, it was eye-opening, of the few people I met on the plane rides in the U.S., it seemed as though everyone knew of, and had been to, Montana.

However, the international connection with Montana is not the same. Missoula, and the University of Montana, are now connected and associated with one thing internationally: rape. The articles about the reported 80 rapes in the last 2 years in the town have hit The Guardian and Daily Mail in the U.K. and other international sites in other languages, like El Molino in Spanish.

Although, the articles written are negative about Missoula, I feel more pride than disguist toward my college town. I am proud that the women in Missoula are standing up and rapists are not getting away with such a horrific crime. I am proud that Missoula will not tolerate  victim-blaming and survivors feel confident, by speaking, they will be surrounded by love and trust—not hate and guilt.

This is something not many towns in the United States cannot claim. Rape happens in every town, in every country and it happens a lot more than we would like to think. And in Missoula, people are confronting this issue head-on and I believe that is something to be proud of.

Montana is no longer the “last best place.” The big state, with a small population, has been discovered. For now, it will likely be associated with danger on an international and national level (both because of the rape allegations but also because of the wild west atmosphere of the eastern part of the state—where the oil, money and jobs flow) but I hope one day, Montana will be recognized as the progressive state. I hope it is seen that Montana does not have more rapes than other states, but women feel more safe to come forward. Where oil booms but also, where the government looks for a more sustainable energy source. I hope we can transform all this negative media hype into positivity and show the rest of the world what a great place Montana is to be.

In case you haven’t had enough of me already…

14 May

Everything is beginning to wind down in regards to the excitement of winning the  Fox News College Challenge,  which gives me time for an update! But why do the update myself when it’s done for me? An update via a plethora of links…enjoy.

Our video is now online on Fox’s website for starters!

A number of Montana locals have given a shout out to Kyle and me! The Flathead Beacon and the Daily Interlake both give great coverage of Kyle and his accomplishments! Make sure to check both of those out.

Unfortunately, I am not yet famous enough for people to bother spelling my name correctly but regardless, I made Bozeman news in the Bozeman Daily Chronicle. But you’ll have to scroll down that article. While Kyle’s community loves him enough to give him his own article, I am awkwardly paired with a cancer story article…which deserved a stand alone column rather than something about me tacked on the end (there’s some opinion for my blog!)

Also, a big thank you to the University of Montana School of Journalism and the article they posted about Kyle and me on their website! And more specifically, a thank you to Clem Work who posted about our award on his blog! He made me laugh with his comment at the end of that post as well. Michelle Obama stealing the limelight from monkeypox, she has GOT to stop doing that. Oh well, at least she kept out of our segment!

Also local TV stations KPAX (Missoula) and KBZK (Bozeman) ran stories about us being in New York. Unfortunately, my CBS affiliates didn’t post stories online but the competition did!  NBC talked to Kyle and you can CLICK HERE to view that story.

So there’s the latest, hot off the press, and now—for the TWIST. I just found out this was not the first time I have made it on Fox News….apparently I’ve appeared on Fox News in Reno!  You can check out my zombie story on Fox Reno by CLICKING HERE. It looks like I owe Warm Springs Productions a huge thank you!  They helped me get in touch with Randy Newberg for the wolf story and the zombies come from their TV Show on Missoula company, Zombie Tools.

And finally—a note on what you’ll be seeing from me in the future!

Beginning June 11 (two days after returning from a trip from England) I’ll be interning with Fox News in New York City. I’m so excited to be working with the America Live crew and Megyn Kelly!

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