My turn: Reporters have sick senses of humor

By Helena Rodriguez: PNT columnist

The best Halloween costume party I went to was in 1998, hosted by a fellow newspaper reporter in Hobbs, who instructed us to come as a “news story.”

After I describe the news stories we were, you may think we were sick-minded, overworked, underpaid, cynical journalists. You’re right.

In our defense, I’ll compare us ambulance chasers to, well, how about ambulance drivers.

In our profession, we resorted to humor, like others do, to cope with some not-so-humorous news stories. Otherwise “Meet the Press” would be “Meet the Depressed.”

My date, a sportswriter and proud alumnus of Texas Tech, dressed as a TT student who was kidnapped and beaten. I was the greedy city attorney fighting city hall for a raise, donning a suit and tie with fake dollar bills in my pockets.

I explained to our hostess, Starla, who I was. Starla then took me into the kitchen and introduced me to none other than the city attorney. He laughed at my costume.

As for our police reporter, Starla — this is morbid — she dressed as a man found dead in a local pond, her face painted blue, netting and leaves on her cap, and a fish in her pocket.

Our male business reporter dressed as Monica Lewinsky and his female date, Bill Clinton.

Helena Rodriguez is a freelance writer and English instructor. Contact her at:

Helena.rodriguez@enmu.edu