Sunday, April 13, 2008

An open letter to Katie Couric...from Sybil Sage

Dear Katie,

I'm sure you're feeling crummy because of all the coverage this week about your having failed to deliver as "the fresh face who was supposed to restore CBS to its greatness". Trust me, you're not responsible for the network having lost hundreds of thousands of viewers since you took over as anchor two years ago.

We all knew what to expect, and we got it. You'd be perky and flash your smile when appropriate, sober and intense when that was called for. The problem wasn't you; it was the news. It's been non-stop depressing since 2006. The war. The economy. Health problems in Africa. Global warming. Genocide in Darfur. Pretty much everything Bush & Co. has done. Continuing tensions in the mid-east. Sarkozy's wives. Spitzer's hookers.

People have turned to Netflix, reality shows, You tube and Sudoku to get away from the unrelenting bad news. Maybe it was harder to hear about problems with Homeland Security from Katie Couric, the person we'd always counted on to be upbeat.

"What could I have done differently?" you may be asking. I can think of only one thing, which would be to keep your salary under wrap. I was a little resentful when I read you were getting $5 million a year. You're no Barry Bonds or Tiger Woods. "Most of my friends can do what she does," I remember thinking. "She talks. We talk. I could do that job."

And that brings me to my request: once you decide on your exit strategy, I'd like you to propose that CBS consider me for the anchor slot. They may argue that I have no news experience. Please point out that's not everything.

Thanks so much,