Lynn Hinds: Teaching As He Handles Talk Show Calls
By Edward L. Blank
Press TV-Radio Writer
| Chance has nothing
to do with it.
The reason KQV's "Pinpoint - Counterpoint" (11 p.m. Sunday to 5 a.m. Monday) is the most intelligent two - way talk show on the airwaves is because it's co-hosts, Lynn Hinds and Carolyn Smith, know what they're talking about.
They research they're weekly subjects thoroughly before going on the air, even to the point of reading their guests' books and come prepared with questions that will stimulate, rather than stifle, conversation.
Lynn, additionally, host two interview shows telecast Sundays on Channel 2.
They're "Profiles" at 11 a.m. and "Sunday" at 12:15 p.m. (They're preempted regularly in the fall and winter to accommodate the football schedule.)
Carolyn handles all the pre interviews on "Profile."
Seven Years A District Resident
Hailing from Akron, Lynn came here in 1963 after obtaining his masters in speech from Temple University and studying at Princeton University for three years.
He's working towards his PhD in speech and rhetoric at the University of Pittsburgh and teaching communications at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.
"The one thing I can't stand is boredom," he said, which accounts for his teaching "once in a while" at Washington and Jefferson, Penn State Extension and even at Duquesne Light seminars.
"What I'm toying with for my thesis," he said, "is the idea of anti-Communist rhetoric in this country since the second World War.
Trying to analyze the phenomenon of anti communism - That's become almost an ideology in this country, yet it's contra -democracy to have an ideology, I think.
| He worked in various
capacities on programs for Channels 4, 11, and 13 before taking over a
KQV talk show called "Controversy" in the spring of 1968.
That led to "Pinpoint - Counterpoint" which started out on Sunday mornings for three hours.
"Frankly, I don't operate well in the morning," he said.
Change Of Times"
He asked fellow Pitt student Carolyn to join him as co-host when the show switched to the all-night slot.
Like Carolyn, who was profiled Aug. 6, Lynn enjoys working on the air but plans to concentrate on teaching if an alternative course is necessary.
"Broadcasting is an awfully insecure field," he said. "You're only as good as you are that day. You're only as good as what you can produce.
"Some very fine broadcasters have found themselves without a job.
"On of the things that happens is they get into a higher income bracket and the station finds a guy it can hire for several thousand dollars less. You get used to a standard of living, then you find yourself without a job.
"I'm not sure how long I can continue in a dual existence.
"Doing a talk show is a real art, I think. There's a tremendous difference, of course, between television and radio. I like, I think, radio better, a little bit.
"Radio is warm and immediate and intimate. Television is cool and distant.
"When you open a microphone to talk on a (phone) talk show, you get questions you cannot possibly have anticipated. People have reactions to guests' statements that you can't imagine."
| No Phones On TV
Neither of his TV interview shows uses phones, so the challenge is anticipating viewers' questions without ever hearing them.
He's pretty good at it. Mention his home life and out comes the relevant data. He's 35 and lives in Shaler Twp. with his wife, Carol, with whom he celebrated recently their 14th anniversary.
They have three children, Shelly, 12, Jeff, 10, and Robby, 6. Now that the children are all in school, Carol's commuting to Indiana University of Pennsylvania where she's working on her masters. She'd like to get back into teaching.
Which brings us back to Lynn, who relishes talk-show calls in which he can teach callers something about their own point of view. He refers to it as "challenging a caller."
"A good call, " he said, "is one where you can take a person's position on an issue and test it for consistency to see whether they believe it just on this issue, or on another as well.
"Sometimes a caller learns by seeing his idea pushed to a logical absurdity. Oftentimes, though, they defend their point of view very well.
"If you can make a person think, and if you can contribute information yourself . . .
"I think the idea I come to in doing two-way talk radio is to combine information and entertainment.
"There's nothing more entertaining or stimulating - if people have their mind turned on at all - than a good intellectual discussion that doesn't try for controversy, but doesn't avoid it if it comes . . . a discussion that doesn't try for heat, but tries for light."