When a Reporter's Gotta Go, He's Gotta Go ... Even in Hurricanes

Video: Steve Harrigan reports from Cancun
E-mail: Steve Harrigan

August 22, 5:20 a.m.

CANCUN, Mexico — So, I'm sitting on the sea wall at about 8:30 in the morning with rain and wind pouring down on me since 5 a.m. There’s a live shot every 15 minutes for somebody — D.C. anchors with made-up names that you are supposed to hear through your earpiece in a hurricane. I’m sitting alone with my hood up to keep my earpiece dry, and the only other human contact I have comes from a little walkie talkie, and from a mic that goes back to the camera, comfortable and warm 1,000 yards away up in the sixth floor of the hotel.

With nothing to do, I start to complain, unaware that a live shot signal of the waves crashing against the sea wall is being fed out to affiliates across the country … so I start off with, "Hey, I need to go to the bathroom."

This gets no response for a while, as the rain beats on my hood. Then, I hear a response in my ear.

"Sky hit in five minutes."

"Hey," I say, "I REALLY need to go to the bathroom."

No response.

Then a minute later.

"After the Sky hit, do an as-live for the Edge."

"Hey," I say, walking now, holding both the walkie talkie and the open mic, talking to a distant imagined audience, "What is it about 'I have to go to the bathroom' that you don't understand?"

I smile in the rain, warming to my subject, broaching the possibility of relieving myself in the pool, until an e-mail reaches the sixth floor and a voice comes into my earpiece — a hesitant, formal, legalistic, voice: “N.Y. asks you to please stop talking about bodily functions as the feed is going out to affiliates.”

Steve Harrigan is an FNC reporter based out of Miami. Click here to read his bio.

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.