Dr. Larry Leitner has accepted an offer to host a syndicated television talk show. Tentatively titled "Hello, Larry," the hour-long show will be an advice show tackling a different topic in each episode in which Leitner, professor of psychology at Miami University and developer of Experiential Personal Construct Therapy, will offer advice for his guests' troubles. The show will air directly after "Dr. Phil" in most major media markets.
"If you wanted to know about the show, you should have just called me in the first place!" Leitner chided when contacted at home after not responding to repeated email inquiries. "I'm a member of the paper and pencil club! I can't be bothered with newfangled technologies like email!"
"The show is going to be awesome," he continued. "I plan to bring an experiential personal construct psychology perspective to the proceedings. If the theme of the show that day is 'Women Who Love Too Much,' I'll be able to explore the ways in which my guests have failed to adequately disperse dependencies or properly develop ROLE relationships."
When asked to expound a bit further on role relationships, Leitner grimaced and in a low, quiet voice stated, "Technically, we call them ROLE relationships, not role relationships."
Reaction within the constructivist community to Leitner's new career trajectory was decidedly mixed.
"I think it's a wonderful idea," said Dr. Jill Thomas, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the SUNY Upstate Medical Center and a former doctoral student of Leitner's. "Larry is perfect for TV. Warm and curmudgeonly at the same time. Just what today's audience needs. Besides, he even looks a little like Dr. Phil."
Dr. Donald Domenici, another former Leitner student who is presently a counselor at Dickinson College and a CPN Steering Committee member, strongly disagreed. "The whole thing strikes me as a bit unseemly and self-promotional. He should not be hawking experiential PCP on television. That's what obscure journal articles with a circulation of 12 are for."
Leitner was philosophical about making such a significant career change at this point in his life.
"Geez, I was planning to retire soon anyway, so what's the difference?" he said, sounding simultaneously reflective and annoyed. "This just lets me enjoy using my clinical skills in a new way. Heck, I might even throw a cooking segment or two into the show. I mean, if Rachel Ray can get away with cooking on TV, then certainly I can!"
"Hello, Larry" is scheduled to premiere in September. Check your local listings.