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Mike Pintek on: Black Friday
Mike Pintek Q: What goes through your mind when I say Friday?

MP: First of all, I call it Black Friday. We thought everything was getting better but, boy, there was the Associated Press story of the, I think it was a 2,000 millirem release over the plant. And that sounds like a big number, and unfortunately most of us in the media at that time, at least the local media, had no clue about nuclear power, so that was scary in itself. You get Jack Herbein from the utility company who's kind of arrogant and during a news conference in Middletown says, "I don't understand why we have to tell you people every specific thing that we do." Well, why not, Jack? You know, we only live here, and you may kill us here before you're all finished. And then the Governor comes out, and says at about midday that day, a -- first they said stay indoors, because of this release of radiation. Stay in, keep your windows closed, keep your door closed, stay indoors. And that's scary enough. So now we're thinking this is serious. And then, pregnant women, preschool children should leave the area. And our phones are ringing like mad. And I remember the general manager of the radio station comes in, he says, what will we do? I said, why don't you answer the phones, Al, just answer the phones. And here's the general manager sitting there answering the phones.

That evening before sundown, I went out back of the capitol and was talking to some of the capitol police, some of my friends who used to let me park for free, in the capitol parking lot. And we're standing up in the back of the capitol and of course we're all talking about this. And I'm looking in the sky, and I know this is kind of dumb, but I just remember the sky was the strangest colors, of purples and oranges and deep blues and it was a really weird sky, and we remarked upon it, how strange the sky looked. It almost reflected the emotional turmoil that we were feeling over what was going on at Three Mile Island. So that's what comes to mind when I think of Friday, or Black Friday as I call it.

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