Tuesday, June 7, 2011

From now on, I'll ask the questions

Lourdes Ubieta
Ricardo Brown and Lourdes Ubieta host a news show called "A Dos Voces" from noon to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday on Actualidad 1020 AM in Miami.
That's 15 hours they've got to fill every week. And it must have been a slow news day today because at precisely 1:45 p.m. they called me to talk about Cuba.
I am happy to oblige, of course, but at times like these I think - Hey, I should be interviewing you.
I mean, I try to understand the Cuba story. I read other blogs when I'm not busy with my day job. I watch Cuba videos. I read studies, reports, articles, etc. But trying to understand Cuba can be a daunting task, and there are a lot of people who know more about the country, its politics and its tumultuous history than I do.
I am an outsider looking in. There are Cubaphiles and bloggers out there who live this complicated, many-layered story 24/7. Let them be the "experts."
I'm content to be the interviewer. Nearly three years after starting this blog, I appreciate straightforward, just-the-facts journalism more than ever.
More important than my two cents are what other people think. And I find that I learn something new in every interview that I do.
Over the past year or so, my goal has been to interview a wide range of people who are passionate about the fate of Cuba. I am researching democracy programs in Cuba with help from the Pulitzer Center in Washington. I want to get a range of views, from believers in the revolution to those who'd like to see the Castro brothers take a hike.
Since May 1, I've been posting video interviews on Vimeo. You can see them here.
I've gotten a few scattered complaints about the people I've chosen to interview - Why did you interview him? Why did you talk to her?
The best advice I've gotten came from a Cuban blogger. He said:
Try to do more interviews.
So that's what I plan to do.
I haven't achieved the balance or variety I want in the interviews I've done so far. To be sure, this is a work in progress.
Ricardo Brown
As for today's radio show, well, my fleeting appearance lasted 15 minutes. Venezuelan journalist Lourdes Ubieta wasn't around, so Cuban-born host Ricardo Brown dutifully fired off several questions about Cuba.
I did my best to answer, but all the while I was thinking - Hey, I should be interviewing you.


Mambi_Watch said...

Hey, congrats!

It's rare that local Spanish-language media go outside the South Florida circle of political commentary. Remember that ONE time that Maria Elvira actually invited Phil Peters on her show THREE YEARS ago?

That's how rare it is. So, congrats for getting that one moment to shine on Miami radio.

alongthemalecon said...

Phil is much better at that kind of thing. He thinks before opening his mouth, unlike me... I just fire away and then realize, oops, now what did I just say? :)