Jennifer L. Grubbs: Return of awards season

Jennifer L. Grubbs

Jennifer L. Grubbs' "I on Life" column appears Tuesdays in the Craig Daily Press. E-mail her at jgrubbs@craigdailypress.com

It's that time of year when the airwaves are flooded with big, over-produced awards shows.

Red carpets are rolled out, and pretty people in fancy dresses and suits climb out of limos to walk those red carpets in front of a flood of flashes and cries to "look over here."

Most of these awards are for entertainment - music, TV, movies, etc. - with which we may or may not be familiar.

There will be clips shown to remind us of something we saw, or to let us know what we missed. Musicians and vocalists will perform nominated songs, as dancers add to the spectacle around them.

As a journalist, one might think I would be blase about all of this canned glamour.

But one would be wrong.

One of the things I inherited from my father is a love of watching these spectacles. Every night, without fail, after the nightly news, Dad wanted to watch "Entertainment Tonight." I usually prefer the printed version, "Entertainment Weekly" magazine, which I devour cover-to-cover on the day it shows up in my mailbox (usually Saturdays).

So when I watch the awards shows, even though I may not have seen all of the movies or shows, or heard all of the music being celebrated, I probably know a little bit about it - at least enough to have some idea if it's likely to win or not.

In December and early January, there is a flood of nominations for awards, as groups and guilds pick the cream of their crop from the year.

Then, the glamour parade starts.

The Golden Globe Awards were on Sunday night, and that, for me, was the real beginning of it. I watched the red carpet shows, checking out which star was wearing what, and who came with dates and who didn't.

When the awards show started, I had my ballot printed out to mark down who was winning and who wasn't. I was unsurprised by how many awards the excellent HBO miniseries "John Adams" won, but I got excited when I saw indie "Slumdog Millionaire" claim multiple awards.

I was thrilled to see Kate Winslet finally win something - in fact, she won two somethings at the Globes this year. "I have a habit of not winning things," she joked in her acceptance speech, explaining why she was unprepared.

I chuckled when Tina Fey called out the usernames of people who had said mean things about her on the Internet, and I roared with laughter when director Darren Aronofsky flipped actor Mickey Rourke the bird during his acceptance speech, after Rourke gave him a back-handed compliment.

Sure, there were boring moments (Spielberg's lifetime achievement award montage, bad banter among presenters, etc.), but that's when I actually got something done besides watch TV.

I know awards shows are not for everyone. They're probably not for a lot of people. But they are for me.

And they're just getting started.

Journalists receive some awards, too

Although entertainment awards get the most attention, receiving recognition from one's peers is nice, no matter the profession.

We print journalists have a number of groups and organizations that hand out awards, and it's that time of year for us, too.

The holy grail of these awards, of course, is the Pulitzer Prize.

There also are awards from the Colorado Press Association, The Associated Press, the Society of Professional Journalists and many other industry groups.

While one of my former editors used to tell me that most journalism honors come down to a bottle of whiskey and a dart board - especially after a far-away editor receives a 10-inch-thick binder of contest entries to read and judge - it's still nice to be recognized.

As one of the editors who has helped judge other states' press association contests and received that thick envelope of entries, I can understand his cynicism about awards.

The Craig Daily Press typically does well in these industry contests, but that recognition pales in comparison to the compliments, attaboys and kudos we get from you, our readers. Of course, much of what we hear is not in the above listed categories, but in the form of suggestions, questions and criticism, all of which are just as, if not more so, important.

You keep us on our toes and remind us that this is your newspaper, and all of the awards in the world mean diddly-squat if we're not useful and valuable to our readers.

I always welcome your feedback, whether in the form of letters to the editor, comments on our online forum, or e-mails or phone calls to me.

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