The "Dishing with Donna" Show is Atlanta's Only Celebrity Food, Wine and Restaurant Radio Program. Listen every Saturday @ 4:00pm on WGKA Talk 920am to hear Donna entertain listeners with celebrity interviews such as Paula Deen, Guy Fieri, or Ted Allen - as well as the exclusive inside scoop into Atlanta's very own restaurant scene.

Listen "Live" Every Saturday at 4:00pm on WGKA 920am

Email Donna Directly @

God Bless Each and Every One of You!

Proverbs 3:5-6

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Kessler in a Crisis

John Kessler had my pulse racing.  There's a first time for everything, and this was the first time in history that I thought I was going to be stood up by my guest on show day.  And not only stood up .... but stood up Live on air!!!  Ever heard of that saying  "the show must go on?"  I have now experienced that definition too up close and personal.   - John Kessler, AJC famous food columist, was my featured guest on yesterday's radio show.  We've been so excited to have him come on and have been promoting it like crazy!  In case you are not aware,  he is quite a local staple here in the Atlanta food scene.  His name is both feared and respected throughout restaurants everywhere.  So I knew we would have so much to talk about when he came onto the show.   .... That is,  if he made it.
I wasn't sure at first because the program is Live at 2:00.   At 1:59, I was about to panic.  The entire content circled around his interview to kickstart the show,  and Kessler was nowhere to be found.  And I'm sorry,  but I had NO BACK UP PLAN.   It's not every day you think your guest is going to forget you.  - At that moment, I realized I hadn't checked my email all day.  When I quickly pulled it up ... AS THE MUSIC BEGAN TO PLAY  ... I saw that Kessler had emailed me from his blackberry saying that he was stuck in road work traffic and there were major delays!  I had to stall.
Stall????  It's live radio!  Really??
With relief running through my blood finally, by the sheer grace of God, I had my sponsors already in studio and we were able to thankfully go ahead and chat with them in the first segment instead.  So all was fixed.  Whew!   . . . . .  or so I thought.
Ten minutes go by.  Commercial Break #1.  My sponsors are done with their segment, and we will be back on air again in 3 minutes.  - Still no Kessler.  -- What????  Now the second wave of panic starts to grow.  We called and found out that he was just down the street, but even then, the traffic was barely creeping.  It could take another ten minutes.  So!  Atleast knowing he was almost here, I was able to calm my nerves - but now the music is coming back up again and I have nothing prepared to talk about without Kessler!  What was I going to do for another ten minutes of live talk time??   -- I was told to do what I do best .... jabber!  Luckily,  I can do that.  But under such pressure!??!  So I actually pulled up this very blog on my program screen in the studio,  and started discussing my previous blog entry about becoming a professional food critic.  It fit quite nicely into a great fly by the seat of my pants introduction,  because without any notice .... in flies Kessler like a long haired tornado, blows right past me, jumps into his seat, throws on his headphones, and says 'ready'!  - All in about one nanosecond

Normally I would never ever ever put up a picture like this of me laughing so hysterically  (Come on ladies, you know what I'm talking about! Not exactly 'pretty')   - but it just truly catches the moment.  I guess you had to be there to truly appreciate this story .... the panic .... the stress .... the drama ..... and then the whirling tazmanian devil entrance to break the tension!  It  really was hilarious.  And it all happened on live radio.
Needless to say,  once engrossed in conversation --- John Kessler was one of my absolute favorite and best interviews of all time.  He was effortless to talk to and we laughed, swapped stories, found out what truly disgusts him in restaurants as well as his own kitchen disaster stories and even unspeakable animal body parts he has had to eat before!  It was fantastic.  In fact,  there was such good chemistry going on that I've invited him to come back as often as he wants to.  I even had someone call in and admit  "I don't know who this man is,  but I'm loving this interview!" 

We are uploading this interview on Facebook if you'd like to watch the video.  Unfortunately we did not have the camera rolling when he came bursting in the studio, because my Director of Operations was downstairs letting Kessler in the building instead.   - Shoot, that would have been priceless.  (although, he is probably thankful!)  I want to officially thank John Kessler for being my most witty, colorful, intriguing, and enjoyable guest.  And I look forward to more unpredictable tazmanian moments!

(oh, and yes - I am a victim of airbrushing.)

1 comment:

  1. He mentioned his faux pas in his blog today. One good thing is that folks like me who read his blog and were not aware of your show are now aware. Can't wait til next Saturday to listen.