Milwaukee Talks: "Morning Blend" host Tiffany Ogle
OMC: More than an hour?
TO: More time with certain guests. Hey, I'd be fine having a five-hour show. I would love it to change a little bit. I mean, one of the things that I've said recently is some of the people who are most intriguing ... We had this great guy come on the other day who's an author, Jason Padgett. His book is "Struck by Genius." He was mugged and became a savant. It was the most fascinating story. I had him stick around so I could talk to him during the commercial breaks.
OMC: The model must be working. They've replicated "The Morning Blend" in other markets because of your success, right?
OMC: But you guys were the first ones.
TO: We were the first ones. We're kind of the premiere.
OMC: Is that cool to know that they took a chance on you. You did it well enough, and now there are (shows) like Vegas "The Morning Blend?"
TO: Yeah. I think there's five markets, and it wasn't me at first. It was Allison and Molly, so they're the ones who really kind of laid the foundation and made it work.
OMC: OK, getting off of work a little bit, you've been here long enough to have formed an opinion about Milwaukee. I'm sure people said to you, "Oh, Minnesota, Wisconsin, they're the same thing." They're not. Minneapolis and Milwaukee are not the same place.
OMC: But do you like it?
TO: I love it.
OMC: Do you want to stay?
TO: Yeah, I've stayed this long because I love it. I don't know if you know this about me, but I grew up in a town of 600 people.
OMC: I did not know that about you.
TO: So when they say "Smallwaukee," that, to me, is like home. I love it. I like being able to go anywhere and seeing someone that you know and feeling like every little place that you go is kind of a mini "Cheers," and Milwaukee's very much that. I miss bigger cities, but I can go home, or I can go to Chicago.
OMC: Do you? Do you visit?
TO: I do. I don't get back as much as I'd like. I probably go back three to five times a year.
OMC: What part of Milwaukee do you live in?
OMC: Do you use your real name on TV?
TO: Yeah. You know what's funny? At Miss America, I got grilled by the Washington Post if my name was really Tiffany Ogle.
OMC: They thought that was a fake name?
TO: Yeah. I'm like, "Why would I choose Tiffany Ogle as a fake name?"
OMC: Do you think it takes a while for Milwaukee to embrace new people?
TO: I felt the opposite. I felt like an adopted cheesehead immediately. But maybe that's just me. I'm kind of an optimist, so I'm the kind of person, when I go and I meet people, I don't assume people don't like me. I assume people like me because I like them. Everybody was extremely nice right away. People would ask me, though, right away, "Are you a Vikings fan or not?"
OMC: Like it's your fault that you're from Minnesota.
TO: I know, but I'm not a Vikings fan. I mean, I'm not a big football fan, in general, as people know.
OMC: May I ask how old you are?
TO: Yeah, I'm 34. I had to think about that.
OMC: You are in a visual medium that doesn't tend to respect women as they age. When you hit 40, 50, can you still do this?
TO: Yeah. Look at all the people in this market over 40. Here's what I would say. I think the entertainment business tells you when it's time to leave.
Especially here, I don't think people are as superficial as some place like an L.A. market, where maybe people are a lot younger, in their 20s and 30s only, or much more seasoned as an anchor. I mean, you kind of have that gap in there, but I don't think so. I think especially in the Midwest, people care more about quality. You have to maintain a certain standard of physical appearance, You've got to brush your hair.
OMC: Right, but assuming you do that, which you will, can you be in this career in this market as long as you want?
TO: I hope so.
OMC: Or is there a logical point where you'll transition into something else, or don't you think about that?
TO: I haven't really thought about it yet, to be honest. I think what I have thought about is just how fortunate I feel to be able to do it because no matter ... It's not always the most talented people who get the best jobs. Sometimes, it's the right timing. It's the right look. It's the right age. I mean, I probably wouldn't have been hired if I looked exactly like Molly because you don't want two people who look the same.
OMC: You do have a pretty primo time slot. I mean, you don't have to wake up at 3 in the morning.
TO: Thank God.
OMC: You don't have to work at midnight.
TO: Thank God.
OMC: When do you get in? When do you leave?
TO: I get there at 7:30, and I'm part-time, so I'm able to leave at about 11:30.
OMC: Oh, you're a part-time employee?
OMC: People might not understand this, but when I do an hour of live TV, that wipes me out. Is that the same for you?
TO: Thank you for mentioning that, because you've done it now.
OMC: Oh, yeah. If I'm on for eight minutes, I feel like I've worked like eight hours.
TO: Yes. I think people feel like, 'oh, you're just playing out there.' We make it look easy.
OMC: Right, that's your job.
TO: Everybody makes it look easy because it's our job. Yeah, and it's certainly fun, but there's a lot of energy, and there's a lot of planning and, mind you, it's not all by us. I mean, Molly, Katie, Kim ...
OMC: There's a lot of people.
TO: Yeah, there are producers and directors.
OMC: There are tons of people buzzing around doing stuff.
TO: Yes, always, and we can't do what we do without them. It's very tiring.
OMC: Where do you like to go? What do you like to do? Where do you try and meet people?
TO: Where don't I try and meet people? Some of my favorite places, I love Camp in Shorewood. I love Taylor's, Bugsy's. Those are three that I probably frequent the most, but I like everything. Sometimes, I dance at Whiskey.
OMC: So people see you out?
TO: Yeah, absolutely.
OMC: Do you get recognized?
TO: Yeah, absolutely.
OMC: Is that working out in a good way?
TO: Yeah, I love it. I mean, there's nothing that makes me happier when someone comes up and says that they watch the show. Or, "You know what? I don't like what you wore the other day." Sorry, I won't wear it again. Also, you know what I just did?
OMC: What did you just do?
TO: I did the ART Bus.
OMC: Yes. Was that fun?
TO: It was so fun. It was very cultural, but I feel like I need to do it again and pay more attention to the art.
OMC: Art, culture, drinking and a bus.
TO: Yes, and a bus. Can you get more Milwaukee than that?
OMC: What else are you up to?
TO: A lot of community work. I think that's one thing that people don't realize or think about. They think we get to do our fun, glamorous job on camera, but they don't realize that we care a lot about the community. We do a lot of non-profit events and a lot of charity events and galas.
OMC: Do you have to buy your own fancy clothes?
TO: We do our own hair, our own makeup and our own styling.
OMC: You're still emceeing the Chinooks games this year?
TO: Yep. I'll be doing the Chinooks. I started last year.
OMC: Was it fun?
TO: It was a blast.
OMC: What about the emceeing the Bucks games?
TO: The Bucks games were fantastic. I did the in-game hosting, so I was an in-arena host. What I will say is people who only go for the game, great. It's a good game. We didn't win a lot, but the entertainment factor ...
OMC: Are you going to go back and do that next season?
TO: I would love to. I hope they ask me back.
OMC: Finally, and I hate to even bring this up, but I will: There seems to be a long-running joke about not being married.
TO: I will say I get calls.
OMC: Are you getting tired of people asking you about this?
TO: No. I get calls from viewers, though, worried if I'm going to be able to get married and have children. People have asked me like, "You need to settle down," because they know my age. I don't hide my age.
OMC: Is that something you want to do?
TO: Absolutely, but I'm not in a rush. I would say I've started kind of joking on the show a little bit about feeling the clock ticking. We have doctors come on all the time that say, "After 35, it's an elderly pregnancy if you want to have kids."
OMC: You're elderly?
TO: Yeah. Women have children happily and healthily into their 40s. And I am dating. That's all I'll say.view all on one page)
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