Living on the Air in Cincinnati...Sort Of

Colleen Murphy is new to Cincinnati, new to radio, and soon, after a flu outbreak, will be new to the air waves. Will she crack like she thinks or will she ace through with flying colors?


Colleen Murphy could not believe it. She had gotten the job interview at the radio station, one of the three classified ads she had responded to which had the three magic words she loved in a job requirement: no experience required. She had only spoken to station director, Andy Travis, on the phone a couple of days earlier, and he had practically hired her on the spot, but had added that for the sake of formality, she would have to have a face to face interview with him and the station manager, Aurthur Carlson. She had felt confident and excited about her job interview for the past two days, but now, walking into the Flimm building, she was getting nervous. Did her hair look okay? Was she wearing the right outfit? Was she wearing too much make up? Colleen looked at her watch and realized that by being half an hour early, she had time to make a side step into the ladies room to make sure.

She stepped in and looked in the mirror. Her glasses were straight, her hair still pulled back by the barett and flowing in dark waves down her back and past her waist. She didn't seem to be wearing too much make up. The only problem was her clothes. Her black sweater and black jeans made her feel as if she were going to a wake. Andy had told her over the phone to wear what she liked and felt most comfortable in, after all, this was going to be a casual interview. She was glad for that, She didn't have any dresses fit for this chilly October afternoon. She took a deep breath and said to her reflection, "Colleen Bernadette Murphy, do not screw this up." She stepped back out to the main lobby on the first floor and waited for the elevator. As she was doing this, two men walked into the front doors. One was tall and slender with feathered hair and tight jeans. He wore a red satin jacket with the word Cincinnati in white letters on the front, The second was dressed in a suit and tie and a hat. He was older than the first and could be pretty much summed up as middle aged.

"Look," the younger man began, "The only way we are going to be able to do this is to get your mother to hand over more money. I'm not talking the federal deficit here, just a little extra so we can get some of these things fixed. Do you have any idea how old some of the equipment that Johnny and Venus and the rest of the guys have to work with? It's impossible!"

"I understand whole heartedly where you are coming from," the older man replied, "but you know mama."

"Oh, yeah, " the younger man said in a disgusted tone, "I know mama."

The two men came over to Colleen and waited beside her in silence for the elevator. Colleen was going over in her head what she might say during the interview, her eyes closed as she concentrated. She heard a bell, but was so lost in her thoughts she didn't realize what it was.

"Are you waiting on the elevator miss?" The older man asked as he held the door open for her.

"Oh, uh, yeah," she hurried on the elevator, "thank you."

"You look nervous," the younger man said and gave her a smile, "Which floor?"

"I have a job interview and I am supposed to go to the, uh, the, uh," her brain had completely blanked. Suddenly, like a shaken soda bottle she exploded in a diatribe of nervous babbling, "I have a job interview for the position as station assistant at a radio station in this building. The station is called WKRP. I know I am going to screw up, but I really want this job, I mean, what ever a station assistant is, it has to beat asking people if they want fries with their combo meals. Oh, god, with my crappy luck, you two are probably in charge of hiring me, and now you will think I am a complete flake and just go, no way are we hiring her. And now I can't even remember what floor I am supposed to go to. Oh, shit."

Colleen was on the verge of tears as the two men, standing on either side of her, looked down at this 4'11" woman who had almost knocked them down with a tsunami of words. They were speechless for a moment. Finally Andy Travis cleared his throat.

"Are you Colleen Murphy?" he asked.

She nodded.

Andy shook her hand, "Nice to meet you in person. I'm Andy Travis, the station director. I called you on the phone and did a short interview if you will remember, and the other man here is our station manager, Mr. Aurthur Carlson."

As she turned and shook Mr. Carlson's hand, she replied, "V-very nice to meet you both, as well."

Andy pushed a button and the old elevator lurched in protest before slowly making its way upwards

"When would you be able to start Ms. Murphy?" Mr. Carlson asked.

"Anytime you would like me to. I can start today. I could start yesterday, but it's a little late for that," Colleen said.

Mr. Carlson laughed, "She's funny, Travis. She has a sense of humor."

"Seems so," Andy smiled.

"Well, young lady, you're hired. Travis was right about you," Mr. Carlson seemed pleased at his own decision, "You will make a wonderful addition to the staff, and any smart station manager worth his salt would hire you in a heart beat."

"I'll second that, Mr. Carlson." Andy looked at Colleen, "How about if we spend the day getting you oriented to the station and its procedures, and meeting everyone? Sound okay?"

"Yes, sir, Mr. Travis, sir. I will do my best." Colleen was in shock. "So, what the two of your are saying is that I am hired?"

"Yes, that would be the case Ms. Murphy," Mr. Carlson said.

"Ooooooh! I have a job!" Colleen squealed with delight, "You have no idea how important this is to me." She jumped up and hugged Mr. Carlson and then Andy. "Thank you both so much!"