I am not a television star (yet), but it seems to me that one of the worst things about being on television is that, when you are on television, you pretty much always have to say something. Even if the thing you are supposed to talk about — say, the ending of Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals between the Boston Celtics and the Miami Heat — hasn't actually happened yet. And especially when you are live. When all of those elements come together, and you are somewhat uncomfortable improvising in the moment, the opportunity exists for a pretty regrettable situation.
With that, we take you to the Sunday night news broadcast of Portland, Maine, ABC affiliate WMTW, anchored by News 8's own Meghan Torjussen.
"The Boston Celtics, hosting the Miami Heat in Boston for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals," Torjussen said. "I guess the game just ended ... it ended in a tie. This is what my producer is telling me right now."
At that point, a full-screen graphic reading "Miami 89, Boston 89" appeared on the screen.
"Whoop, there you go," Torjussen continued. "There's the score, 89-89. Uh, went down to the wire, 21 seconds left, ended in a tie. ... All right, let's move on to professional baseball."
Yes, I'd imagine moving on to professional baseball — or literally anything else — would be a pretty appealing option for Ms. Torjussen at that point. Because the longer you linger, the more likely folks are to remember that, um, NBA games can't end in a tie. They have to keep going until one team has more points than another when time's up.
That's why, when the fourth quarter finished with the two teams knotted at 89, the refs made them play another five minutes — five pretty bad minutes that featured only six total points, thanks in part to being played largely without Paul Pierce and LeBron James after they fouled out early in overtime, but, still, five more minutes. And when that five minutes ended with Dwyane Wade clanging a 3-pointer and the scoreboard reading Boston 93, Miami 91, that's when it was OK for the game to end.
Something tells us that Ms. Torjussen had a sense of that — this is why she added the all-important sentence, "This is what my producer is telling me right now." Something further tells me that this scenario made for a pretty awkward post-show meeting. "Hey — sorry I made you go on television and say that an impossible thing happened. Are we good?"
On the plus side, Meghan Torjussen, you are now a meme. That's more notoriety than most of us could ever hope for without smoking bath salts or having a friend who knows how to make GIFs. Congratulations.