Jon Dawson: Local baby shower sends one to hospital

Jon Dawson: Local baby shower sends one to hospital

As many of you may know, longtime WCTI Sports Director/Anchor Brian North and his wife Jennifer are expecting a little bundle of joy in a few months.

Here's the official announcement:

On Sunday, a group of Brian and Jennifer's Lenoir County friends threw the expectant couple a baby shower. For decades, baby showers meant the women would get together for a refined afternoon of watercress sandwiches and genial conversation.

Since Neuse News Editor Bryan Hanks was the CEO of this endeavor, however, the refined elements of the day would have to share space with some of the more aggressive aspects of polite society.

That's right, football was involved.

In one room, a tastefully decorated table of sandwiches, fruits, vegetables and cupcakes were on display. In an adjacent room, three televisions were simultaneously tuned to three different football games. The idea was the women would hold court in the refined room, while the men would consume chicken wings in between bouts of yelling at the television in the other room.

Normally, I'd rather play the William Tell Overture on my forehead with a ball peen hammer than watch a pro football game. But, I decided to hang with the guys since I needed material for this column. There is nothing funnier than a guy who gets winded from brushing his teeth yelling at a football player for not running fast enough.

As it turns out, Jennifer North is a rabid football fan. In fact, she reluctantly left the football side to join the girly-girl stuff in the next room. While making her way out of the den, she answered someone's question by saying "I have really high standards", to which all 12 people in the room pointed at Brian North and said in unison, "Really?".

Brian North has a reputation as being a bit of a scamp, so when the cable went out for 90 minutes, he passed the time by pranking everyone within a 10-mile radius. As Neuse News went to press, these incidents were confirmed to be instigated by Mr. North:

  • Replacing the baby carrots on the vegetable tray with Cheetos

  • Asking for multiple price checks at The Dollar Tree

  • Replacing the Cheetos with baby carrots

  • Ordering a Big Mac at the Bojangles' drive-thru

  • Tricking Bryan Hanks' pool boy Jonathan Massey into licking self-adhesive stamps - twice

  • Dropping off his goldfish at the dry cleaners

  • Placing photos of old girlfriends onto wanted posters at the post office

When people first realized Brian North had married the beautiful Jennifer, many people either couldn't believe it or assumed Jennifer was the victim of some sort of elaborate hoax.

"Several members of my family volunteered to contact Amnesty International on my behalf," Jennifer said. "It took my parents a while to warm up to him, but to their credit, they've stopped hiding the silverware when we visit."

All kidding aside, Brian and Jennifer North are great people. Brian is very lucky in that his wife — much like mine — isn't necessarily concerned with superficial qualities such as looks, intelligence, good posture, social skills or an even moderate grip on reality. They're going to make great parents, and by “they,” I mean Jennifer.

Sadly, the baby shower was cut short as we rallied behind Jonathan Massey at the emergency room. Turns out those self-adhesive stamps North tricked him into licking are as toxic as a plutonium-pop dipped in asbestos. His prognosis is good, although when we left the hospital he was convinced Frank Sinatra was trying to steal his applesauce.

Get well, Massey, and congratulations Brian and Jennifer!

Contact Jon Dawson at and

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