Getting Personal is an email Q&A with a local personality. Here, a chat with longtime WICD weatherman and personality Doug Quick.
What time do you typically get up? What do you do the first hour of the morning?
Working late and getting home right before midnight, I usually don't get up until 9 or so ... unless my wife and I have errands or I have an early meeting with the Vermilion County Conservation District Foundation. The nighttime work hours were quite a switch for me since the early years of my radio career when I was doing the morning shift. I also used to do "Sunrise" at WICD, which required me to get up at 1:30 a.m. Since then, I have transformed into more of a night person.
What did you have for lunch today? Where? With whom?
Today, I had lunch with my WICD co-anchor and my youngest daughter in Danville. Elitsa Bizios and I visited many of the hospitalized veterans at the VA hospital in Danville earlier in the day. My daughter, Mindi, had a break at her job and joined us. Usually it's just my wife and I either at home or somewhere in Danville.
Best high school memory?
I worked at an independently run Walgreens agency drugstore, Stiehl Drugs, in Taylorville during my high school and early college years. I have many memories of that job, which helped me overcome a childhood stuttering problem and shyness. I also have many memories with friends, going to movies in Springfield and Decatur, driving around central Illinois or hanging out around the courthouse square in Taylorville.
Tell me about your favorite pair of shoes.
Any shoe I don't have to tie is my favorite. My several pairs of NB athletic shoes are tied just enough to let me slip my feet in and out of easily. I think I only have one pair of dress shoes I have to tie .... the others are loafers I wear to work.
What does a perfect Sunday afternoon include?
A perfect Sunday begins with breakfast on the deck outside and reading the Sunday papers, including The News-Gazette. (How's that for an endorsement?) The rest of the day would consist of spending time with my wife, Melissa, our daughters (Miranda and Mindi), their husbands (Herb and Derek) and my grandson, Pete. Later, perhaps some research and writing time.
Was there one book you read as a child that you still cherish? Own? Read?
I wasn't much into children's books, although I had a great uncle who used to read to me. The biggest influence on my life, though, came from a box of old TV Guides from the 1950s, which I found at my grandparents' (my dad's parents) house. I learned to read them when I was 4 or 5 years old. Those old magazines were a major influence on my future broadcast career. I still have those original editions and have added to them over the years. I've also utilized them as I document the history of mid-Illinois television on my website, dougquick.com and hopefully in a book I'm presently writing.
Where on Earth are you dying to go? Why?
My wife and I went to Hawaii several years ago. We would both love to be able to return. Do I really have to give a reason why? Actually, there are many great places in the U.S. to visit, but home will always be here in mid-Illinois.
Tell me about your favorite pet.
In November last year, my wife and I adopted a Shih Tzu puppy, and we love her to death. This is the first dog we've had since our old English sheepdog. Beau was part of our family from our marriage through the late 1980s. We couldn't replace him with another dog until we adopted Moka. We have, however, had about four cats in the meantime.
Have you discovered that you are becoming like one of your parents? Which one and how?
I'm outgoing like my mother, while at the same time I can be quiet and reserved like my dad. Other than those traits, everything I've done in my life so far has shaped me to be very different from either of my parents.
What would you order for your last meal?
Hopefully I won't be receiving my last meal anytime soon, but for right now, it would consist of a breakfast buffet with a peanut butter and chocolate ice cream dessert.
What can you not live without?
I would have to say home electronics with the Internet. It would be impossible to narrow it down to just one item as all are connected. I've always had an interest in things I had to plug in.
Who do you have on your iPod?
I don't have an Apple iPod, but I do have a couple of MP3 players. I have about 2,800 songs in my basic library, with about 900 on my players. I've got songs from the 1940s to the early '80s, although mostly classic top 40, which consists of The Beatles, Motown, soft rockers like the Fifth Dimension, Carly Simon, Carole King, America, CSNY, Seals and Crofts to the album rockers like ELP, Pink Floyd, Nektar, the Moody Blues and some contemporary jazz. I also have many hours of recordings of radio stations I listened to from the 1970s. Like a time machine, those recordings take me back. Some of those recordings are on my website.
What's the happiest memory of your life?
The marriage to my wife in 1978. Our first date was on Jan. 10, and we were engaged by the end of that month. We got married on the first of July. If it wasn't for that series of events, I wouldn't have the great memories of the births of my daughters and grandson.
If you could host a dinner party with any three living people in the world, whom would you invite?
President Obama, Paul McCartney and Steven Spielberg. If I was giving one for dead people, the list would be very large.
What's the best advice you've ever been given?
I would say to live by the basic golden rule.
What was your first job and how much did you make an hour?
My first real job was at the drugstore I mentioned earlier. I was a stock boy, but the job included everything from that of a pharmacy apprentice to a clerk and even a janitor. I had early aspirations of being an architect, then a pharmacist. Then the broadcasting bug bit me again about halfway through my college career with my first radio job. With my first job at the drugstore in September 1970, I earned minimum wage; I think it was $1.60 an hour.
What was a pivotal decision in your career and how did you arrive at that decision?
I've made several pivotal decisions that redirected my career. Early on, I made the decision to go back to college after taking a year off to work at my local radio station and pursue a career in broadcasting instead of pharmacy. I changed direction from basic disc jockey air work to broadcast advertising sales and management. Later from radio to television and once again from broadcast management back to actual air work. I decided that broadcast management was taking me from the actual "art" of on-air broadcasting so I began to do weather part-time on NewsChannel 15 back in 1995. At the time, I was still doing an air shift on WDNL/D-102 in Danville until 2002. I retired from radio on the 25th anniversary of D-102, 25 years after I began as the first morning DJ on the station.
Do you have a bad habit? What is it?
I talk too much sometimes. Just ask my producers at WICD who are always telling me to "wrap it up" in my earpiece.
How do you handle a stressful situation?
I begin by looking over the entire big picture of what's causing the stress, put it in perspective ... and then come up with a rational plan of action to eliminate the cause — or at least I try.