Hockey night in the newsroom
Jamie Edmonds is a sweet kid. Very gullible at times, but also a fun and lively member of the newsroom. That sounds about as awful as saying she has a nice personality, I know, but that just the way of it. Jamie is a Pittsburgh native and a die-hard sports fan. Truth be told, her dream job is more in the sports department than news, which is why you've seen her fill in on weekend sports from time to time. She doesn't really get upset with anyone, which opens her up for ribbing that people know she'll brush off. Take this exchange from many months ago, but one that has become legendary. It began with some back and forth between Jamie and one of her more smart-alecky co-workers.
Jamie: Why do you always insult me?
Unnamed co-worker: Because you wear ugly shirts.
Thunderous laughter filled the newsroom and Jamie laughed too, but as she does, she shrugged it off knowing it was harmless. Jamie doesn't shrug off the Pittsburgh Penguins, though. She lives and dies with them, which made last year's Stanley Cup title that much sweeter as a Wings fan. You may or may not know, that the Pens are embroiled in a nasty series with Washington in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. Washington won games 1 & 2 and we mocked Jamie. Then the Pens came back to win games 3, 4 & 5 and Jamie mocked us as we struggled with Anaheim.
Jamie will try and watch the games while she's working, but that's pretty tough. Usually, what she does is TiVo them at home and watch them after work. The only thing she has to worry about is the rest of the newsroom watching the game and not telling her what's happening.
Last night was pretty tough. It was Game 6 and the Pens were losing late in the third period with everyone watching. Everyone except Jamie-- she was in editing putting together her story with dreams of watching a Pens series-clinching win after work at home. Then the Pens scored with about 3:00 to go to tie the game at 4. There was a hushed cheer/roar throughout the building that I don't think Jamie heard. As time ticked down, Pittsburgh went on the power play. But with about 10 seconds left in the game, Washington skated in short-handed and the Pittsburgh goalie had to make an awkward save to send the game to overtime. It sounded like this when it happened.
Jamie (in Editing): You guys! Aaauuuggghh!
Jeremy (in Sports office): It wasn't even that close!
Overtime didn't last long. I was in sports talking to Jeremy when the Capitals connected to send it back to a Game 7 in Washington. Jeremy punched his arms in the air in silence and I did a very quiet, "Yesssss," as the control room down the hall could be heard yelling, "Ooooooohhhhhhhh," through the thick door. Jeremy just likes the Caps I think, and I don't want any part of a revenge series with Pittsburgh if we both make it that far. It was fine, Jamie was on set doing something for the Fox show. She didn't hear a thing.
Washington celebrates the OT-winning goal Monday
Now it became a "Dead Woman Walking" situation. She was going to waste almost 4 hours later that night to go to bed miserable. I went into editing at about 10:30 and she said her BlackBerry was blowing up with Facebook notifications.
"It's either people saying, 'Ha ha. You blew it. Pittsburgh sucks.' Or it's people sending out congratulations and stuff," she said. "I'm tempted to just look and get it over with."
That would have been the smart idea. In talking to a co-worker later-- the same ugly-shirt insulter-- he said it was like on the Sopranos when someone thinks they're just taking a ride, but they're really going to get whacked. He wondered out loud if he should just walk up and say in a quick and rushed tone, "Jamie, the Penguins lost 5-4 in overtime-- you'll thank me later for this!" But he didn't. None of us did. She wanted to watch the game and boy did she get a good one to watch, but it didn't end the way she wanted.
Hey Jamie, your team is losing to this guy-- an 80's member of the Polit Bureau
Now her anguish becomes massive entertainment for the newsroom. Come Wednesday, when the Pens are skating in a deciding Game 7, you can bet, Jamie won't be waiting to watch on tape-- she'll be trying to watch it when she can. That means it will be high comedy to watch the roller coaster of emotions throughout the night.
I hope they lose. Is that wrong? I don't care if it is, because her football team just won another Super Bowl and mine went 0-16. I hope Sidney Crosby has a freak Zamboni accident in warm-ups.