So long and thanks for all the fish

Drivers are the worst travellers, physicians make terrible patients and journalists detest to be interviewed. But as I have made the decision to step down right after almost a dozen decades as host of the Calgary Eyeopener, I believed I owed you all an explanation. Simply, it really is time.

I adore this work. In my viewpoint, it is the top rated position for a journalist in the metropolis and, to point out my bias (I grew up in Calgary, and really feel as connected to our foothills and mountains as a grizzly in springtime), I would argue it’s the very best damn job in the place. 

David Grey and Dana Peers, then the Calgary Stampede main government, at the 2019 Calgary Exhibition and Stampede. (CBC)

I have been a doing work journalist for 33 yrs. I commenced with The Countrywide in Toronto (a wonderful very first gig), took a reporter task in my household town in 1990, moved to turn out to be a legislature bureau chief in Edmonton two years later on, and after some unforgettable escapades with Ralph (I was with him when he met with Yasser Arafat at a beach house in Gaza), moved back again to Toronto to consider a national reporting gig with the now-defunct CBC business display Venture

Individuals ended up a superior seven decades. I submitted studies from Cairo to Beirut, London to Jerusalem. On this continent, I chased corporate gamblers in Vegas, tech dreamers in New York, double-dipping doctors in New Orleans and white collar crooks in Houston (any one else keep in mind Enron?). It was a great gig. I lived on an plane, explained to tales from every single Canadian province and two of three territories, and someway received married and began a family members together the way.

When our second child was born, we decided to increase our young children wherever my heart was, in Calgary. I arrived property.

David Grey in Lebanon in the 1990s. (CBC)

That’s when I fell into a web hosting chair. The very first five a long time have been invested on Newsworld, back when it experienced a nationwide presence exterior of Central Canada. It truly is in which I genuinely made my interviewing chops, discovering from Kathleen Petty, the late Henry Champ and other veterans of the activity.

Michael Enright gave me the best bit of assistance, “the 2nd question is always identified in the initial response.” He was appropriate. It’s a listening position most of all. 

In 2008, I was presented the option to shift to the “senior service” and host a radio demonstrate. That present was The Homestretch, and I was hooked. Two decades later, the Eyeopener job opened up, and I have been in this article at any time considering that. 

Like most hosts, I have a prolonged listing of “most memorable interviews.” I’ve had each individual prime minister given that Mulroney on the other facet of my microphone, film stars and musicians, premiers and self-promoters. I have expended time on other shows (As it Happens, Sunday Edition, Cross Country Checkup) but the Eyeopener has always been wherever I come to feel I most belong. And truthfully, it is really since of you.

Let’s experience it, you can find a ton of porridge in the every day information operate our task is to uncover the raisins. Time and again, it is really the day-to-day people who gentle up the airwaves with their stories. I will normally try to remember the Midnight Sunlight Plant Food stuff entrepreneur from the Yukon, the farmer who saved an hurt antelope and broke his arm undertaking it, the gals who tirelessly volunteered to aid strangers cleanse up their yards after the 2013 flood.

Angela Knight, David Gray and Allen the Alpaca social distancing at CBC Calgary in Oct 2020. (Paul Karchut/CBC)

In the close, it can be Canadians telling other Canadians about the tales they are most passionate about that makes radio worthy of listening to. Which is what receives me up in the early morning. The tales that make you sit in your driveway with the engine nevertheless jogging to listen to the close right before you have in the groceries. The ones you relish to inform your kids, or your mother. I overhear our stories becoming retold by taxi drivers, and by CEOs. It truly is what general public broadcasting is all about. 

And I Iove radio. Often have, at any time considering that I was a kid. CBC radio is the cultural railroad of the nation, and it drifts its way out of home windows and across lakes and more than mountain ranges like wisps of smoke on a summer season breeze. The engineering and the journalism occupation consistently appears to shrink and alter, but somehow radio endures. Thank goodness for that. It was a privilege to be allowed to enter your autos and homes. I will normally be grateful.

Speaking of gratitude, thanks to all the specialists and producers and camera operators and editors and dreamers who arrive with each other to develop demonstrates each working day. I get to be at the pointy stop, but they have built it feasible. Unique thanks to my spouse, Kim, and my now grown-up kids, Jackson and Emma, for placing up with all the early several hours. 

David Grey and his (get the job done) improved half. Angela Knight. (CBC)

And on a past but definitely not minimum take note, thanks to my colleague and mate Angela Knight, with whom I have shared additional than a thousand sunrises. I will miss out on that. She will carry the display ahead, as capable and talented as always. Possibly “A person Grey Knight” Coffee will grow to be “One Knight Only.” It would be fitting.

So why am I leaving the Eyeopener at the conclusion of this thirty day period? Perfectly, some snooze would be awesome. I just know it truly is time for me to do some thing else. And no, I do not seriously know what that will be, but I glance forward to obtaining out. I am retiring, for now, heading off in lookup of new adventures. Thank you for listening. Let’s discuss yet again shortly.