Friday, April 27, 2012

Friday Faces: Meet Kirk Carapezza

Meet Online Editor/Reporter Kirk Carapezza. Kirk reports and edits stories for VPR News and at and oversees Public Post, VPR's online resource for searching municipal meeting minutes and sharing local news from Vermont cities and towns.

Q: We understand you are the originator of a not-so-secret VPR handshake.
It’s true. The (un)official VPR Handshake is called the Ham-and-Cheese. Legend has it that a couple of awkward fist-bumps and misfired high-fives in the Fenway Park bleachers led to what some say is the most satisfying handshake of all time, as VPR's Michelle Jeffery and Brendan Kinney demonstrate here.

This handshake's popularity is steadily growing. Franny Bastian deserves credit for making it official, though. She delivered the first one during a staff meeting earlier this week.

Q: Do you have a public radio role model? Who, and why?John Burnett for his courageous reporting and use of sound from the border; Daniel Zwerdling for exposing the hidden wounds of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan; Nina Totenberg for her ability to distil even the most complicated questions facing our country and Mike Pesca for his sense of humor, his writing and delivery style. I find that any of their stories can stop you in your tracks and make you stare at the radio as they bring you places you otherwise would not go.

Q: Are the Red Sox going to win their division this year?
It’s early, but this team isn’t showing us very much grit out of the gate. I try to remember that the Minnesota Twins started 2-9 and still went on to win the 1991 World Series. Still, after last season's historic collapse, I’ve told myself that I won’t watch Sox games on TV. Instead, I’ve been listening on the radio.

For now, I’m adopting former General Manager Lou Gorman’s perspective. Gorman approached baseball with a certain fatalism. Responding to reporters about whether the team would reach an agreement with Roger Clemens, he said “The sun will rise, the sun will set, and I’ll have lunch.”

So in a way, sure, this team could win the AL East. But in another, more accurate way, they’ll probably finish fourth behind the Yanks, Rays and Jays.

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