Jan. 26, 2005 5:10 a.m.
New York City
I've set up a laptop in a back corner office near our production manager Buonincontri. It may be the noisiest back corner office. People drop by throughout the day, and anyone can join the conversation. You can work at your laptop, then pitch in, then go back to work — or make your point, then take a phone call. If I had a neighborhood bar it would be that back office. When it's time to eat I put my laptop down on the floor and use the table space as a counter.
Yesterday it was falafel with cameraman Petlin. Petlin always says he knows where the best of something is. Last week it was the best pizza in New York. This week it was the best falafel in New York. He tells you that, then you start eating and say yeah it's good; then he tells you no, really, the best falafel is in Brooklyn. So you're trying to be polite, and then he gets you as if you don't know anything about falafel. I followed Petlin's lead and got the falafel on wheat, but he is a health nut and wheat was not tasty at all. Trying to eat things you don't really want because you think you should never works.
The meals sometimes leave a little mayo on the table, but with a quick buff from a napkin it's as good as new. Buonincontri sees everything but lets it slide.
There's a chair and a stool. Of course I usually go for the chair. If you get the stool your back aches after a while. I had the chair in the morning and was trying to write a script. The engineer Muskopf came in just back from the tsunami in Thailand. Muskopf was smart and blunt. He had a lot of analysis about coverage. It turned into a debate on the best way to cover a story like the tsunami, with what kind of equipment, what kind of stories to do, when to move positions. I had to write a script, but I kept piping in. I'd look at my laptop but could not focus. All the time I was thinking what I would do, what gear I would need, whom I would need to try to be ready for
the next time.
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Steve Harrigan currently serves as a Miami-based correspondent for Fox News Channel (FNC). He joined the network in 2001 as a Moscow-based correspondent.