james dalton highway

Local Alaskan Television: Guns, Funny Voices, and Not Much Else

We didn’t watch too much television during our “Great Alaskan Journey” as Tim Magazine is calling it. Tim Magazine, by the way, is the fictional version of Time Magazine I publish inside of my head every morning. I’m always the Person of the Year and all of the advertisements are me selling cigarettes and light liquor. It’s great. You should definitely read it sometime.

The only chance we had to settle in and let our brains melt was after our stay in Coldfoot. We returned to Fairbanks and had about a day to relax and unwind after the wondrous trip up north.

alaskan travelers
As cheerful as we could look while waiting for our flight home.

Television isn’t a big part of our everyday life and I’m not quite sure how different the local Alaskan broadcasts are from what the rest of the country sees. I haven’t lived with cable in almost a decade. However, I’m still pretty certain Alaskan TV is different.

I knew Alaskans loved their guns. But so much so that they have commercials for shooting ranges, gun shops, and bullets during each break? It seemed excessive.

Lots of kids who grew up in the Northeast probably remember the commercials for Mount Airy Lodge. The familiar jingle “All you have to bring, is your love of everything….at beautiful Mount Airy Lodge” is ingrained in our memories.

I’m amazed at how outdated this commercial already was for my generation…

Basically, imagine that Mount Airy Lodge commercial’s blissful message, but include a couple of overweight mothers firing off rounds at targets. That’s a regular commercial in Alaska.

My only other real observation about Alaskan television is that the news reporters don’t care what people think of them. Neither do the news teams that hire them.

The main anchor on the news broadcast we watched looked sloppy and angry. I’m used to evening news anchors at least trying to look good despite being years past their prime. Not this lady. She knew she was in her 40s and wasn’t afraid to let the truth roll.

Speaking of famous Alaskan nutcases, I forgot this woman was from there:

Worse than her was the journalist who did a story on…well…I can’t remember. I was too busy laughing at her incredibly nasally and unattractive voice. I grew up thinking only people with strong speaking voices could ever get on television. This particular reporter must have slept with Tom Brokaw, Wolf Blitzer, and Matt Lauer to get her job. The last on this list, of course, probably not against her will. Brian Williams likely also claims to have messed around with her. We all know he didn’t.

Otherwise, television in Alaska was the same. The major networks broadcast whatever they want and we all lie in bed happy. I kind of wish I did have a chance to learn more about what Alaskans love other than their steaming water.

I guess we’ll just have to go back again soon. We already know how to plan our next trip to Alaska.

james dalton highway
Under the sign for the James Dalton Highway. Legend has it, James Dalton would gun down people along this route whenever they’d call him Jimmy.
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