Venting about “Vetting!”

What is “vetting?”  I had never heard the word until last week when TV News started using it for the Sarah Palin story.  Reporters asked “Did McCain properly vet Palin before choosing her?” when “Did John McCain check her out before picking her?” would’ve sufficed.  Well now every media member and political pundit is using “vet,” so it must be undemonstrative and sensational.  (Apparently words like “examine,” “evaluate,” or “verify” were unavailable that day).  However wikipedia defines vetting, John McCain should take it from me… vetting is a terribly necessary process that can prevent you from hours and years of insanity. 

Two years ago, when offered my current anchor position I did NOT properly “vet” my co-anchor, Owen Conflenti.  Boy, was that a terrific mistake!  I have since learned Owen is not only a raging breakfast taco-holic, but ironically he’s pro low-sodium.  I smell a flip-flopper.  In 1989, Owen was suspected of supporting a dog who chased a cat through a neighborhood.  Years later, he adopted a cat from a shelter in North Carolina — a cat who subsequently had kittens with an unwed orange-tabby.  Owen is also a card-carrying member of NAAA, (pronounced: naaaaaaah) News Anchors Against Alliteration.  He is loudly outspoken in favor of sanctions against tardy vending machine repairmen.  And there’s also this:  Owen’s drawers in his desk are meticulously organized and clean.  The problem?  It makes mine look even worse because I’m a staunch backer of inner desk chaos.  He’s been linked to Father Time and his offensive comments on punctuality.

Early on I questioned Owen’s experience in the anchor chair.  After all, the only thing that prepares you to anchor is talking.  I wasn’t sure he was prepared to talk to the city of Houston.  But his Mother assured me Owen had a stellar vocabulary by age 1.  Insiders say Senator McCain took 50 days to vet his potential nominees.  Next election, I say “vet” away!  But start a year or two before the election.  I speak from experience.  As a result of insuffficent vetting, I sit beside one of Houston’s most alert and telegenic anchors everyday.

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