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The 1400th Show

8 December 2016 | Email This Post Email This Post | Print This Post Print This Post

Joseph Planta marks the 1400th show with brief remarks reflecting on the last 12 and a half years of interviewing.

Notes for remarks by Joseph Planta:

I am Planta: On the Line, in Vancouver, at TheCommentary.ca.

There wasn’t a twelfth anniversary program as there usually is in September, but since I’m up to 1400 shows now, I figured I’ll take the time to mark the occasion. There won’t be any guests, no cavalcade of clips—none of that stuff. I just wanted to take the time to thank again all the guests who have appeared on the program over the past twelve years and a half years. And beyond that, all the many, many other people who’ve arranged to have guests on the program. I’m the only who books the show, and in the course of booking a guest, I’ll perhaps have talked to one or two other people to smooth over the arrangements and set the appointment. The logistical part of the show is perhaps my least favourite part of how I spend my time, but the publicists, managers, chiefs of staff, assistants, editors, directors and others who I’ve dealt with over the years, have made it all the more easier for me.

Most of these 1400 shows have been wonderful, some not so good—very few not so good, but I believe I’ve learned from each of them. In a way, you’re only as good as your last interview, and not having gone to interview school, if such a place exists, I’ve only learned from the experience of having done it for as long as I have. I’ve had the great good fortune of having talked to some great journalists over the years; some marvellous interviewers from whom I have learned lots, emulated, and outright stolen from. Their indulgence, encouragement and reassurance has sustained me. I’d name some of them, but at the risk of forgetting someone, I won’t. Know that so, so many people who count themselves amongst the guests over the past thirteen hundred and ninety-nine shows have had some imprint on what I’ve set out to do, done, and will continue to do for a little while longer.

As I noted a couple of years ago on the Tenth Anniversary Program, in terms of doing this show there are now more years behind me than are ahead of me. I still feel strongly that I should end the program one day soon. And barring sudden death, it won’t be anytime shortly. One of the reasons frankly that I haven’t ended it yet is that there are constantly marvellous opportunities for conversations that come up and are afforded me. But as I get older, I do notice the workload getting tiresome at times. Those are facts and I’ve got no axe to grind. This is a vocation as it is an avocation and I’m not complaining that it isn’t as rewarding as it might have been. And if the workload is getting to be too much that I’m slipping when it comes to the interviews I’m doing, then perhaps it will be time to go. Hopefully I will realise that and take my leave then. Part of me always wonders, borrowing from Billy Barnes, if I’ve stayed too long at the fair. It is my intention to continue with the program as I’ve previously committed to June 2017, and into the fall of 2017. I’ll decide soon if I am to continue beyond that.

One of the thoughts I do have now, as I realise I was 22 when I started this endeavour, and I’m nearly 35 years old, is how much of one’s life this show has become. No doubt doing this program has taken time away I might have otherwise had for family or friends. But these shows have also afforded me the chance to realise who I would want to count as family, friends and loved ones. To those who challenge my thinking, indulge my whimsy, tolerate my disposition, and understand my countenance, I am very grateful. They number far too many people, and I can only hope they know who they are.

I can’t really remember when it was, but from an early age I revered broadcasting. I always wanted my own show, and I wanted to interview people. I do, and I am, and I am very grateful for the opportunity. For these 1400 shows over the last twelve and a half years—thank you. In Vancouver, I’m Joseph Planta.