May 7, 200604:38 PMThe Life
How Anndee got her star
May 7, 2006 - 04:38 PMAnndee Laskoe [click thumbnail photos to enlarge], who received the 272nd star on the Palm Springs Walk of Stars at 3pm today, coanchors the 5 and 6pm television news broadcasts at CBS 2. Last year, she was coanchoring the 5, 6 and 11pm newcasts at Channel 3... but then something happened:
You've had a stressful year.
[Laughs.] I don't know if stressful is the way I view it. There were definitely a lot of changes. Some I took in stride. Some were thrown at me. But I have to tell you I'm a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. I was happy where I was, but I'm so much happier where I am now.
If I'm reading the situation correctly, you chose your infant child over your career.
It seems like a woman in your position, someone who has your looks, your youth, your obvious command over the tools of the trade... that type of newscaster would be looking ahead to the next larger television market, and working 24/7 to get there.
Thank you, by the way! And yes, you're right. I don't know if there was a time when I asked myself, "Do I want to go network someday?" But I do remember thinking... well, first of all, I always knew I wanted a family. And I remember asking myself, long before I was married, and well before we had our little guy, that if the day came when I had an opportunity to go work in Los Angeles, would I want to be reporting, and doing a live shot in like, South Central L.A., at eleven o'clock at night, knowing that I had a family at home? And it never sounded good to me. It just never did. What did sound good was living here in a place that is so beautiful, so dear to me and where I grew up, five minutes from where my mom and dad live, where I feel so comfortable. I didn't mind starting from the bottom, and vacuuming floors, if that's what I had to do, to work my way up and stay out here.
Your parents were very supportive during the time you tried to work out your schedule at Channel 3 - they looked after your little boy?
They still do. I come into work at 2:30, and there's a gap between then and when my husband gets home at 5:30. So they come over every day and watch him, which makes me feel so lucky. I'm a worrier by nature, and you never really know for sure whether a stranger will take good care of your child. Not having to worry about that is a great TA-DA! They're an amazing mommy and daddy.
And your husband's parents live out here, too?
Well, you just met my mother-in-law at the front desk! Yes, they live five minutes away. And my husband's sister and brother-in-law live five minutes in the other direction. So we're surrounded by family. Some people might go wacky with that, but we feel lucky to have that kind of support so close.
How did you get the name Anndee?
The doctors told my parents I was going to be a boy, just by listening to my heartbeat. They didn't do ultrasounds in those days. So my parents were going to name me Rocky. But when I turned out not to be a boy, they took my great-grandmother's name, Anna, and sort of incorporated it with Rocky to come up with Anndee.
Where did you meet your husband?
I met my husband at work. I had been at Channel 3 for five years and he had worked there for a couple of years, but we hadn't met. He was upstairs in Sales, and I was working downstairs. But then there was a companywide meeting, and I saw him and he saw me, and there was an instant chemistry. He was drop-dead gorgeous, and my heart stopped when he checked me out. I invited him to a small station party that evening, and the rest was history. It was a quick romance - I knew I wanted to marry him within a month. We met on April 7, we got engaged in December, and we were married the following September.
Were you working on-air then?
It's funny you asked that - I was anchoring on weekends at the time, but was offered the main anchor job on my honeymoon.
Wow, what a great time in your life! When did you first know that you wanted to become a journalist?
Oh, from a long time ago. Both sets of grandparents were obsessed by TV news - my Nana would call the station, if she didn't see her favorite reporter for a week! And then, in junior high, they asked me one day in Biology class to read the bulletin over the loudspeaker. I was super-shy when I was little, so I was very nervous. But after I did it, the teacher took me aside, and said, "You have a knack for that." And it made me feel so GOOD! So I tucked that away in a corner of my mind. And I always enjoyed writing for the school newspaper, in both junior high and high school. Then, in high school, I got a gig writing some feature articles for The Desert Sun. And when I went away to college, at USC, I wrote there, too. But I felt something was missing. I enjoyed putting together photo albums at home, so I always wanted to put a lot more pictures with my articles than the average print journalist. [Laughs.] So I thought, "Hey, maybe I should try the video side of it, to give a little more pop to these words." And then talking to people, and telling their stories, especially when you can help people do something they might not have otherwise been able to do, just makes you feel good.
[Click to hear about Anndee's love of writing.]
Now that you're not a reporter anymore, do you still have time to write?
I wish I wrote more, but we have producers that write our stories. So what I do now is just some tweaking here and there, to make it sound more natural coming from me. A lot of times, people don't write for you, and it sounds silly, trying to act more highbrow than you are - because I'm not, I'm just an average girl, trying to have a conversation with the valley. [Laughs.] But I get to do some writing - I just did a special story that will air later this month.
What's the worst part of your job?
Putting on makeup, and trying to pull myself together and look fresh at the end of the day!
You're one of the youngest people to be honored by the Walk of Stars - how did that come about?
I got a call one day from someone on the nominating committee, saying, "We talked about honoring a journalist in the area, and you were the obvious choice, because you grew up here. It was unanimous that you were selected." And my mouth dropped open.