Early Lessons in Humility

>> Back when I was young, foolish, and had all the answers, I was asked by the TV station I was working for to do a commercial for a local top-40 radio station.

Having been a top-40 DJ myself before going into TV, I felt I was more than qualified.

I took my time doing it. When it was done, it zipped along with images of DJs, turntables, records, carts, all the rest -- and behind it all was a selection of rock music that really rocked.

Since I was proud of it, I showed it to a man more than twice my age, who had been in the business a few decades.  

Maybe I wanted to show him what the new generation was capable of.

He looked at it, but didn't say anything. (He was a man of few words on the best of days.)  But as he was leaving the screening room he turned around and asked,  "Do you mind if I borrow your original footage?"

With the commercial done I didn't see any harm in that, so I gave him the single reel of my 16mm raw footage.

>> A couple days later he handed me a small, 60--second reel of film.  Again, he didn't say anything. He just walked away.

I was, of course, curious as to what was going on, so I put the film on a projector.  

What I saw all came from my original footage.  But even with the great ego investment I had in my own version, I had to admit what was totally obvious: his version totally blew mine out of the water.

He never told the management what he had done, or even let them to see his version.

I learned an awful lot about humility that day.

-Ron Whittaker

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