Voice over: Croaking my way through election coverage

By Kristen Tribe | Published Saturday, March 10, 2018

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My super-human immune system failed me at the worst possible time – primary election day.

It’s a day news junkies like me anticipate for months. It also means talking – a lot – and a late-night deadline, which simply isn’t a good mix when everything between your sinus cavities and throat feel like they’re on fire.

I wasn’t running fever, and honestly, at the start of the day sounded much worse than I felt.

But by game time – the Messenger Watch Party – I was starting to drag. Talking was downright painful, not to mention cringe-inducing for anyone with which I was speaking.

Normally I dart between watch parties on the square, notepad in hand, interviewing people and visiting, but this year I limited my activity. Only one trip across the square and talking only when necessary.

When I did speak, these were the phrases I heard most often:

1. You sound terrible.
2. I hope you feel better than you sound.
3. You need some whiskey.

Since whiskey wasn’t an option on the clock, halfway through the night I ventured to Trinity Street Coffee Bar for the next best thing – tea and honey. I actually walked through the back alley to avoid people and snuck in the back door. As soon as I croaked my request, the barista looked horrified, but in the sweetest possible way.

“I just need something to get through the night,” I told her.

She said she had just the thing – turmeric tea with honey. She read all the ingredients to me, explaining how they would soothe my throat and was incredibly kind. Honestly, she was a lifesaver.

I nursed that thing as long as I could – through a stint at the Republican watch party, the wrap-up at the Mess and those final phone calls to winners and losers to complete our coverage.

In fact, it was so helpful, I went back the next day for another just to get through a staff meeting.

Turmeric tea saved the day. I was down, but not out.

In the days since, I’ve maintained a serious regiment of gargling salt water, eating spoonfuls of honey, drinking more tea, and of course, Advil. Today I’m happy to report I no longer sound like a lifetime smoker, and my voice is almost back to normal.

Congratulations to Tuesday’s winners and those advancing to runoffs. I know it will be a night you always remember, as will I, although for vastly different reasons.

I’m happy to have survived, and hopefully, I’ll be in better shape for the runoff. I don’t like playing injured.

Kristen Tribe is the Messenger’s assistant publisher. She is currently eating Sucrets like candy and looking for her next turmeric tea.

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