Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Help Wanted

A Boston Blickbild Exclusive

Ski racing season will be starting in less than 10 weeks. Ski Racing magazine just put out an ad looking for writers. (see this link) The Blickbild is also looking for people to join its intrepid reporting team. Do you or someone you know have what it takes to be a Blickbild reporter? Leave a comment either here, on our Facebook page, or on Twitter. We asked our chief editor about the job requirements. Let's find out what he has to say.

BB: Please tell our readers what it takes to be part of the Boston Blickbild team.
Editor: Of course the most important quality is intrepidness. If you are a wimp, don't even think of applying to work for us. Go work for Ski Racing magazine or any of the other publications instead of us. We have the most intrepid reporters in the business and want to keep it that way. 
BB: Right. Wimps at the Blickbild will ruin its reputation. 
Editor: We publish the news that the others don't dare to print. Only the most intrepid reporters can do that. In fact, if you are a sissy we will not consider hiring you even if you meet all of the other requirements. That is how important being intrepid is to us. 
BB: What else do you require in your reporters and researchers?
Editor: They must be able to eat exotic foods like ojlmsfjaegger or surstroemming and act like they really enjoy them. 
BB: Tell our newer readers what those are. 
Editor: Ojlmsfjaegger are cubes of pickled reindeer heart in a special chocolate and smoked salmon sauce. They are eaten in Norway on birthdays and are considered a real treat. Surstroemming are specially fermented herring that is a Swedish specialty. 
BB: I have eaten both ojlmsfjaegger and surstroemming and lived to tell about it. Kjetil Jansrud's grandmother supposedly makes the best ojlmsfjaegger in Norway. (see this story). It was actually pretty good. I must admit that the surstroemming was awful. (see this story) But I tried it anyway.
Editor: Another important requirement for our reporters is being able to travel on short notice, so they must have a valid passport. They don't just travel to the races and big events like the Olympics and World Championships. The Blickbild has sent its reporters to places like: the Mojave Desert in California, the Lubyanka prison in Moscow, New Jersey, Mongolia, and the Congo.
BB: Is it better for a Blickbild reporter to be based in Europe or the States?
Editor: Europe is ideal because most of the World Cup races are there and it is easier to get to the races. But if someone from North or South America is willing to spend the winter in Europe, then he or she would be considered. Our reporters should also know their geography so that they get to their intended destinations in a timely manner. If a race is in St. Moritz, our reporter should be able to find his way to Switzerland and not end up in Swaziland. In fact, all applicants must pass a geography test.
BB: Geographical knowledge is a very important skill. Is there any other knowledge that a Blickbild reporter must possess?
Editor: Oh yes! Our reporters should have knowledge about ski racing and the athletes. I think that everyone learned their lesson after Regina Mader got married and changed her name to Sterz. (see this story)
BB: Are prospective reporters required to take a test about the racers?
Editor: Yes. They must also know FIS World Cup racing and artistry rules and take a test about them. These tests are not as difficult as those given to FIS artistry judges, but they help us to eliminate the unqualified candidates.
BB: Must your reporters have their own computers? Several magazines require reporters to use their own computers.
Editor: No, we provide our reporters with the latest laptop computers and smart phones. But because we provide the equipment, our reporters must be willing to work all hours of the day and night seven days a week in order to get interviews and file their stories. We also prefer that they don't take holidays. But if a reporter feels that he needs a break, he must take his holiday during the short interval between the end of racing season and the start of summer and fall training. There is no off-season at the Blickbild! The reporters who decided to use the football World Cup as an excuse to take a holiday were severely punished for that transgression.
BB: Do your reporters need to know foreign languages?
Editor: English and German are the two universal languages of the World Cup tour. Our reporters should have good skills in both of those languages. Additional languages are a bonus. Applicants will be given written and oral tests in English and German. We also provide interpreters for our reporters when they must interview people who don't speak English or German.
BB: Is experience with conducting interviews also required?
Editor: Definitely! Our reporters have to interview a variety of people like: athletes, trainers, officials at the FIS, Russian border guards, city mayors, police officers, actors who play detectives, Mafia enforcers, and witch doctors. They should be able to get along with people of all cultures and races and be able to conduct themselves in a professional manner. 
BB: Do your reporters have to submit a minimum number of stories per week?
Editor: We don't have any quotas, though we expect more output during racing season. We are more about quality than quantity, though we have been known to accept stories that weren't up to a tabloid's journalistic standards. Our reporters must be able to think on their feet and figure out which stories are ones that the others won't touch. Or if someone else has already reported the story, our reporter must be able to give a unique perspective on it.
BB: Is there anything else that is mandatory for a Blickbild reporter?
Editor: No, I think that we covered everything.
BB: It takes a special type of reporter to work for the Blickbild. Let's see if I can summarize the requirements....A Blickbild reporter needs: intrepidness, willingness to eat exotic foods, the flexibility to travel on short notice, geographical knowledge, familiarity with the athletes and FIS World Cup rules, willingness to work every day at all hours of the day and night and never take holidays, fluency in German and English, interviewing experience, and creativity in finding and getting the right story. 
Editor: That's right. Anyone who fits all of these requirements is strongly encouraged to apply.
BB: Well, it looks like we are running out of time. I want to thank you for this interview and hope that you get good candidates. And that concludes another Boston Blickbild exclusive interview. 

The Boston Blickbild. Our motto is: Many apply but few are chosen to wear the Boston Blickbild press badge.

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