Woe is the reporter who messes up on-air. Thanks to YouTube, they never get to live it down. (Remember the grape stomping lady?)
Annie Stensrud appeared drunk, drugged and/or generally out of sorts during Sunday’s 10 p.m. newscast on KEYC-TV in Mankato, Minn. Tilting her head, slurring her speech and mispronouncing such words as “institute” and “employees,” the droopy-eyed Stensrud rambled about the weather, a new cancer clinic and Christmas.
Asked to explain what happened, KEYC-TV general manager Dennis Wahlstrom told ABCNews.com, “Sunday night’s uncharacteristic newscast on KEYC Mankato can hardly be considered private. Nonetheless, in our judgment, the matter represents a personnel issue to be resolved internally.”
It’s far from the first time an on-air gaffe has turned into a story of its own:
1. In October, while discussing a story about the correlation between the pain of wearing high heel shoes and orgasm, WPIX anchors Sukanya Krishnan and Frances Rivera walked around their desk showing off their four-plus inch heels.
That’s when Rivera, while joking that the pain from her high heels “feels so good,” lost her footing and went down on the studio floor, laughing out loud.
Krishnan, unsure whether her co-anchor was still joking, got up to help Rivera. “I thought you were doing one of your jokie-jokes,” Krishnan said.
“No, I fell on live TV,” Rivera said, blaming it on the makeshift studio they were in and not the size of her heels.
2. New York Fox 5 news anchor Ernie Anastos had his 2009 “oops” moment memorialized. During the 10 p.m. newscast, while bantering with weathercaster Nick Gregory, Anastos dropped the F-bomb.
Their exchange went something like this:
Anastos: “I guess it takes a tough man to make a tender forecast.”
Gregory: “I guess that’s me.”
Both men shared a chuckle, then the 66-year-old anchorman shocked his colleagues and the audience at home when he said, “Keep f***ing that chicken.” Stunned co-anchor Dari Alexander grimaced straight into the camera before going to commercial.
3. Comedian D-lister Kathy Griffin was naughty on New Year’s 2009 during a live broadcast on CNN with Anderson Cooper.
4. Talk show legend Larry King didn’t exactly blunder when he told PBS host Tavis Smiley that his son wanted to be black after President Obama was elected. But Jimmy Kimmel milked it for laughs anyway.
5. You would think that TV-savvy guests would learn never to trust a microphone as long as it’s still clipped to them. But it’s during those unsuspecting hot-mic moments that you can really hear what newsmakers think. Just think of Obama’s off-the-cuff comments about Kanye West or Jesse Jackson’s off-color comments about Obama during the election.
At the end of last year, Peggy Noonan and Mike Murphy, a former aide to Sen. John McCain, got caught when they were overheard criticizing McCain’s VP pick, Sarah Palin.
6. MSNBC talk show host Joe Scarborough had a slip of the tongue one morning on his political show. He accidently dropped the F-bomb when meant to use just the first letter of the word. When his co-host pointed out what he had said, Scarborough stopped the show to apologize. Perhaps he knew he was going to be in trouble with more than just the FCC. He had to face his wife when he got home.