On being a Reporter
I love being a reporter!
For one, I learn so much, and go to events I would not otherwise go to. For instance, today I went to a multicultural worship service on assignment for NUVO. This is not the sort of thing I would have gone to since it was specifically designed to bring together Christians of different denominations and races (white and black).
Yet, it was fascinating (from a sort of anthropological point of view). While parts of the sevice were uncomfortable for a person who isn't Christian (especially one who has consciously rejected the concept of Trinity), some of the songs would be totally acceptable as nasheed (Islamic songs of praise) and the sermon was a demonstration of what a sermon ought to be -- uplifting, emotional, personal -- most of which is missing in many khubahs (the sermon during Muslims' Friday prayers.) It seems too often the only time khateebs get worked up is when they are berating their congregation for assumed shortcomings, or when they are talking about the oppression of Muslims around the world. I wish more imams went to Christian churches to learn how to inspire their followers rather than try and scare them into behaving well!
Number Two benefit... being on assignment gives me an excuse to go up and talk to people I would never talk to. Believe it or not, I'm naturally shy. Get me in a crowd and I usually clam up. At an event like this, I would stand on the fringe, watching people greet each other and then slip out to my car without having said a word to a soul. With a title behind me (and the need to get quotes for a story), I manage to meet a lot of people.