Shephard Smith is a ridiculous, operatic gift to live television and the United States of America, and if you’re letting his hyperbolic hurricane warning bother you in this year, of all years, you are missing out on a great source of entertainment and inspiration, if not always strictly news.
Here are three reasons he should be your life coach.
1. He Takes Things Personally
This is not always an advantageous trait in a newsman, as it can lead to emotional reporting. But it’s a great trait in a life coach. He takes your success or failure, your life or death, to heart, and he doesn’t much care about your hurt feelings.
Do you think he’s going to mince words about your swift, middle-aged descent into Type 2 diabetes? No!
“This moves 20 pounds up,” he says, gesturing with resolve at the wall-sized projection of the scale he has had installed in your home. “You are dead. Because you can’t survive it. It’s not possible unless you’re very, very lucky.”
2. Who Should Narrate Your Life?
It’s fashionable to say you’d like Morgan Freeman to narrate your life. Fine, I get it. Dignified, for sure, imbued with import. Sonorous, but — here’s my problem — somnolent. I don’t need James Earl Jones’ beautiful booming voice pep-talking me through a run or hyping me for a presentation. I need Shep Smith in car-chase mode.
In this type of narration, every single act, no matter how predictable, is met with surprise and excitement.
“Mary Katharine is— Oh, what is this?— eating breakfast standing up in the kitchen while putting her child’s hair in a ponytail. YES! I believe that’s bacon. Is it bacon? YES, IT’S BACON! How does she think this is going to go? Oh, I SEE! The bacon grease is akin to a styling product! Well, I don’t support it, but I have to say it’s working here…for now.”
3. The Enthusiasm Salad
You’ve heard of the compliment sandwich— a management tactic (trope?) in which one introduces and softens a bit of criticism by putting praise on either side of it. Shep is a Southerner. Despite his decidedly Manhattanite digs and duds, he retains a bit of his attitude, if not his accent. But in classic bless-your-heart Southern style, he wraps his barbs inside a delicious Jell-O salad of gusto. Like that mysterious concoction at the potluck in the church basement, you will be lured with the promise of sweet, empty calories, then confronted with chunks of nutrition and confusion.
When Shep isn’t doling out hard truths about your impending death, this is where you’ll find his wisdom, and you’ll enjoy it even as you know you’ve been tricked into consuming it.
Listen below for the signature “mmm-hmm” and colloquialisms such as “wordy-dird” and “smotherage.” How could you not want this in your life? So, if you’re in Georgia or Florida, do the safe thing. Even the Waffle Houses have closed, man, which may be what triggered Shep’s panic in the first place. Evacuate and live, because no one wants you scattered or diced when we could all pull through this and live to dance at whatever amazing wedding it is Shep is going to.