Second chances are rare in the TV news business, but fired TV news anchor A.J. Clemente could still get one after the current round of appearances to explain his expletive-laced on-air goof.
Clemente appeared on NBC's "Today" show on Wednesday to talk to Matt Lauer and Savannah Guthrie about the two dirty words he accidentally uttered to kick off his first-ever appearance as news anchor on North Dakota's NBC affiliate KFYR.
The clip, which has become a viral sensation online, shows Clemente and his co-anchor Van Tieu beginning the weekend news, but Clemente begins by saying two words we can't publish here. Though he attempts to continue with the broadcast, he and Tieu are visibly flustered by the gaffe.
As a contrite and semi-embarassed Clemente explained to the amused "Today" hosts, he wasn't aware that the broadcast had begun 30 seconds early. He was reading over his script and suddenly the "fireball shot came right out of my mouth."
Clemente still seemed uncomfortable with watching the clip, which he told Lauer and Guthrie was "gut-wrenching."
Of course, Clemente was fired from the station almost immediately after the broadcast. Clemente says he bears the station no ill will. And it appears the whole debacle may work out in Clemente's favor. Last week, he was an anchor on a little-known affiliate in a rural state, and today he's reading copy alongside two of the highest-profile hosts in morning TV and having them advocate for someone to hire him.