Last week, Andy was off on vacation and so I was anchoring with Nicholas Ferreri. I little running joke I have with him is how I like to say "Nick" Ferreri instead of Nicholas. So, in the 5:00 show I referred to him as Nick following it up with, "Sorry, Nicholas, I couldn't resist." He laughed and went on. At the end of the show, we had a kicker about someplace with poor weather which led to this exchange on TV:
Me: ...and I guess we have Nick Ferreri to thank for that.
Nicholas: (smiling) It's Nicholas.
Me: Have you ever given Nick it a shot? You know it has a real "Tom Magnum" feel to it I think.
We just laughed it off and said goodbye see you at 6. I go back to the newsroom to prepare for the 6, when our assignment editor Tim gets off the phone and delivers a heavy sigh. "Jason, stop picking on Nicholas!" Tim, who is never in the mood for baloney at the end of his always long and arduous day, explains the phone call. It was an older lady who was upset that I didn't respect Nicholas's wishes by calling him the name he prefers. She informed Tim, who at this point in the conversation probably was looking for a blunt instrument, that Nicholas was very polite in correcting me, yet I was being rude for upsetting him.
Here's the problem-- I WAS KIDDING! Nicholas knew I was kidding, hence his laughter. This lady seemed to think Nicholas was obviously upset when that is impossible. Nicholas had surgery as a small child to remove the mean bones from his body (there are 7 he tells me). We tested that, too, when reporter Lauren Zakalik bullied him one day for some lunch money and pushed him down. Nicholas smiled and complimented her on her shoes and went about his day.
***WARNING: THE PREVIOUS WAS ANOTHER EXAMPLE OF LEVITY***
The rest of the conversation with Tim involved a lot of eye-rolling as he put his coat on and headed for the door.
Tim: She's also not happy that you're back on the news, Jason. She's apparently, under the impression you've been away for awhile. (sighs heavily).
Me: I was kidding! Did she not see Nicholas laughing?
Tim: I don't know (trailing off) I didn't get... far... with... and... (piping back up) All I know is she's is not a Jason Colthorp fan, but she looooves Nicholas (sighs).
Well, that settles it. From now on he's Nick. Nick Ferreri the weather authority.