Brady meets Emily at the interview.
“Wine, wool and war.”
He was so taken aback by the brevity of her answer; he looked up from his notes at her. He was puzzled. From the icy stare directed at him, he knew he ad done something to offend her. It only heightened his embarrassment to see that her mother and grandmother were highly amused by the scene playing out before them.
“I thought all good reporters did research before interviews, Mr. Carlisle,” said Emily. He knew Emily was right and he was sure that this would reflect badly on him. Brady knew that the Burnside women were friends of his boss, the editor of the Evettsville Gazette. This was not going well, at all.
Brady was the newest reporter on the staff. He had only been with the paper for a month when he landed the assignment of interviewing a few of the area entrepreneurs for the “Local Business Highlights” section of the paper.
Fresh from college, he had a difficult time even getting an interview with some of the major publications in the Baltimore/DC area, much less a job. With no job prospects and no steady income to rely on, he set his sights on a small town newspaper. Even that had proved a difficult task, but his big break came when one of the older staff members of the Evettsville Gazette retired right at the beginning of the tourist season. The position was advertised for a “Local Color” reporter. The item in the description mentioned covering local sports for the area high schools. In his haste to apply for the job, he had only glossed over the other items in the job description.
One of the items in the job description was writing “feature articles.” He had studied journalism is college, with the hopes of becoming a big time sports writer in one of the major metropolitan areas in the country. He thought that those “feature articles” would be about the local area athletes. This was the south and football is practically a religion anywhere below the Mason-Dixon line. He figured he had to start somewhere, and here was a good as anywhere else. What he hadn’t counted on was that the sports coverage did not start until late July during training. So, his time was now being utilized for other writing purposes, such as highlighting local businesses. Fluff-stuff, he called it.
He had to admit, there was an upside to these fluffy assignments. Covering some of the area restaurants usually led to some very fine eating. If he managed to write a favorable review, the restaurants remembered. On his starting salary, freebies were welcome.
The same could be said for covering the local wineries and craft brew houses in the area. He was a craft beer kind of guy, and was beginning to learn which of the wineries bottled the best vintages. Those he could relate to. A bed and breakfast? Not so much.
He cleared his throat and apologized to Emily for whatever offense he had committed. It was damned hard to do that when you weren’t sure what it was that was done in the first place. What was with her?