Sunday, March 30, 2008

An Encounter

Gibby and I finished out work for the night and started to walk to the media pick up van. As we are loading in ESPN's Andy Katz joins us. It's a nice ride till Any notices the sign I am carrying. As we are packing up I snatched the "Video Distribution" sign, why did I do this? I was forced to sit in a small room and watch the game on a small monitor when the actual game is just yards away. It's my small revenge against the NCAA. Take that, I stole your sign that cost you only nickles.

Andy looks at my sign and starts laughing and ask why would I take that sign, not one that said North Carolina or some thing more significant. I convey the above story and he laughs. Gibby and I inform him that other signs were taken as well, he can't believe it. He then asks where am I going to put it, of course in my computer room where all my news stuff goes. Technically video is distributed there so it fits.

I can now imagine him telling all his ESPN friends about that weird guy in Charlotte that took the Video Distribution sign. Well, he will probably for get about that chance encounter by the time he hits the airport.

Deep In The Heart of Texas

Well UNC won the game and I just found out that I am going to the Final Four. I am very excited, yet at the same time a little worried. Finances are a little low right now, we are going to have to find ways to make this work. Good thing though I get paid Friday and will have a lot of over time from this trip. Now I wonder what days I will have so I can get packed and spend time with The Wife and Lucy.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

At the Half

It's half time and we are getting a little loopy. One of the guys from RAL grabbed my digital camera and started taking pictures. I've been singing Cool It Down by New Edition and T Dog is, well T Dog.

I just said the phrase redonkulous... we need out of this building, and drinks are required.

More on the Cardinal Teeth

I mentioned the whole Louisville Cardinals' mascot has teeth and that does not make any sense. I actually got to do the story today and the above is what aired

Yesterday Shorts, Today Parka

Yesterday and the day before it was in the low 80s and I was loving it. I put on my shorts, I got a little sun on me. Then today I go outside and the wind is whipping and it's now in the 50s. Those in the frozen north are looking at me like I'm insane for complaining about weather in the 50s. I don't care it's a 30 degree difference and it's tough to deal with. It doesn't help that downtown Charlotte is a wind tunnel and making it feel even colder.

I almost did not bring my fleece pull over. It was sitting on the outside of my suitcase and it was between putting in the fleece or putting in the bathroom bag. I decided to put the fleece in there even though it was not suppose to get below 70 all weekend. I learned from my lessons last year. Always take a warm shirt just in case.

Great Moogly Googly!

OK, I just checked my Google Analytics page and I saw something I thought I would never see, I had 240 visitors with 364 page views yesterday! I don't know what's going on, but I am in complete shock. It seems everything is coming from blogger navbar page, I've tried to see what it is, but I can't get that page to open. How many more will I get today? Who knows, but I'm excited to see.

Last Full Day

It's just after noon on game day and I am feeling much better today than I did yesterday at this time. I slept for about nine hours and the only thing that hurts is my feet and calves (stupid walking). As I mentioned yesterday the game does not start till 9 so we don't have a lot of work to do till later in the day. This will hopefully give me enough energy to get through the day. Our work flow will be in a more compact time frame and I'll be on the move a lot.

So far the feeling is that Louisville could beat North Carolina, all I am saying is this is the same game that the Tarheels lost last year so, you never know. I'm torn, I want to travel more, but I have a feeling if they do move on I will not be going. I get the sense that I will have to stay back and to the Chapel Hill rioting live shots. For some reason when I do them, the shot works. When someone else does it... failure. I believe it's nothing that I am doing, it's more about being lucky. No matter what I probably won't get to see the game. I'll just have to enjoy this game and the rest of my trip.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Thinning Out the Herd

As I sit in the video distribution room, there seems to be a lot less people, that because there are less people. With two teams losing all of the media covering exit stage left and head back home. On one hand it's great because we get to spread out and have more room. On the other hand it's less people and someone who might be interesting has left. I don't feel too sad, because I'm still here and that means at least two more days away from the office.

This is just one of the prices everyone has to pay when you cover a one and done tournament, you think you are going to have a full four or five days and all the sudden you have to go home and do your normal job. For all the complaining I may do, I'd rather stay out here and work long days than do the normal routine. Would I want to do this type of life style all the time... no, but it's a great change or pace and can make things a little easier when I do return to the daily grind.

Grrrr I'm a Cardinal

This is the Louisville mascot, it's a simple little bird, look at it's feathers a little beak and FREAKING TEETH! At last check, birds don't have teeth like this. All I keep thinking is grrrr I'm a cardinal and I'll bite your face off because I have teeth!

I've asked some Louisville fans, but no one has an answer, most don't even realize the teeth. The usual response is, it has teeth? I did not realize that or it makes it look angry. So hopefully you will think grrrr I'm a cardinal every time you look at the mascot.

Saturdays Game

The big question this morning has been when will the game be played on Saturday. Will it be the logical 6:15 EDT or the ridiculous 9:00 EDT time. We come to find out we are the late game and the NCAA needs to get their heads checked.

The reasoning you will here is the better game is the UNC Louisville game, but when the other game is being played out west and involves UCLA... University of California Los Angeles... you might think more people out west would rather watch that game at 6:00 Pacific instead of 3:00.

The real reason is money, the NCAA wants the game that more people will watch later, why? They can charge the advertisers more because the east coast is more likely to stay up to watch UNC than UCLA or Xavier. The west coast will tune in for UCLA and CBS hopes they will stay and watch UNC. More people at one time, that equals a lot of money.

I don't mind people making money, but when it comes at the cost of making the game enjoyable and forcing people to stay up late and hope to see a final is going to be the NCAA's down fall. Last week I did not know who UNC was going to play because the game ended after midnight. I'm not that die hard of a fan and I can wait a day or two to find out who they will face.

Logic needs to prevail, yet I know it will not. This also hinders us from doing our job, we can't show highlights during the 11 because the game will still be on. Then if the game ends during the show, we now have to scramble to get back inside and hope to get sound about how they won or lost. Instead of wanting to do what's right for all the NCAA will greedily force everyone east of the Mississippi to lose sleep or not watch an ending of a good game.

I know money rules and the NCAA will do what's best for them, but think of the public as well.

Yesterday Wrap

Ok, it was a long day, but over all good. UNC played OK, they looked a little sloppy, but Washington State is known for their defense and if they could have hit a few of the threes they missed, it could have been a more interesting game.

After the game ended we were unable to show the highlights, why might you ask? Some silly NCAA rule, so we did a reenactment with dolls, and Gilbert was one of them. go to the video page and look for UNC dolls, it's a pretty creative idea and we have gotten a lot of publicity for it.

After it was all over I ended up working 15 hours and I'm really tired. More to come from the tourament later.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Long Trip

The one think I do not enjoy on trips like this is the live-shot at nauseum idea. To make it even tougher, the live shot location is on the other side of the building. So anytime I need a battery, something from the sat truck or just to go to the bathroom involves lots of time. I don't mind live shot, it's part of the job. I just wish i didn't need a beast of burden to carry all the equipment. I missed most of the first half and hopefully I will get to watch a little bit of the game.

WSU Kids

This update took a little longer than I wanted it to take. Lots of live shots and having said shot on the OTHER side of the building has made me a little tired and sweaty. Earlier we talked to some kids who actually drove the 40 hours from Spokane. They only made spots at gas stations, so they had to hold it or do the old Dumb and Dumber Coke bottle bit.

That's dedication to a team, I don't think I could ever do that. Considering they are playing the top seeded Tar heels. I hope these kids have fun and one day be able to tell there kids about it.

In Da House

I'm getting this in later than I wanted... Internet access is a little bit sparse around the building and I just finally finished my story for the early shows. The biggest difference from last year to this year has been, well, the city. East Rutherford = hole, while Charlotte so far is warm and there are places to eat that do not involve me crossing an eight lane highway. Also all the locals are nicer and it's a lot warmer. I'm actually going to crack out the shorts tomorrow. Next update will be about these guys who drove in from Spokane.

So It Begins

Within a few hours, I will be heading to Charlotte for the third and most like fourth round of the NCAA tournament. I am going to try and do it like last year, with many new posts about everything I am going to do, and what I see. The interesting aspect this year will be that I am a day behind everyone else that is there. Because of scheduling problems I had to stay and edit the Wednesday shows. I hope this does not cause problems and hopefully I will get into the swing of things. I am leaving Raleigh at 9AM and hope to be set up around noonish or maybe one.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Not Again

The other day I get a call from The Wife, she sounds a little distraught. While she was babysitting, a woman came to the door looking for the person who owned the Silver Mazda. The woman had hit the car while backing up. Of course, it's my car, there is not a lot of damage, but still the front panel is cracked and the side light is knocked it of place. The best part of this story is the woman did not want us to contact the insurance company, first thought was year right... you say you are going to pay for damages, till you find out how much and then we are left with a bill. I hope this does not become a big problem.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Meet Lucy

The great puppy search of aught 8 is over, meet Lucy the puppy. She is 7 months olds and we have no idea what kind of dog she is nor did her previous owners, so she is a full mutt.

I can definatly tell this is our dog, she's been chasing her tail half the day. So far she's gotten it about 3 out of 10 times.

This so far is my favorite picture, finally a puppy all my own. She's been doing really well so far, only one accident in the house, but she has no idea of this concept I call walk. She'd prefer not to have the leash and run wild. We'll work on that.

Puppy Watch 08

We are on our way to meet Lucy, cross your fingers.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Prodical Castaway Returns

I liked this weeks episode of Lost, but for some reason there was a disconnect for me. Maybe it's because I stayed up a little to late playing poker last night and I'm still a little tired. The one thing I find interesting is the fact you never really see Walt. The big problem is that he's suppose to be 10 yet in real life he keeps aging and he is going to be 16 this May. The writers have been doing a good job keeping the character in the show without really showing him.

For the first time, I think we actually were given out a lot of valuable information. We find out that Whitemore was the one who planted the plane and that people from the island have a problem dying. We also have conformation that the sea people are in fact wanting to kill everyone.

I think there needs to be a list of created TV characters and Ben is going to be near the top. That guy is so evil, yet at times you feel that he some how is trying to protect the greater good. Has there ever been a more manipulative guy on TV? Has has everyone eating out of his hand. Even after Alex finds out that Ben is not her real father and she still listened to him. Or course that led to the possible death of Rousseau and Karl. He also got into Micheal's head. I loved the line about Ben doesn't kill innocents, yet when Micheal called him out that Micheal had to kill Anna Lucia and Libby the response was, Ben didn't tell him to kill them, Micheal killed them. Damn, that cut him hard.

I'm not pleased with the fact I have to wait a month for new episodes, I know the writer strike threw everything off, but I want more as usual. Here are a few random thought.

We saw a lot of dead people in this episode; George McCaskey, Naomi, Libby and Tom.

What kind of super powers does Miles have? We know he talks to ghost, but what else is there.

Interesting that Sawyer is starting to question Locke about not giving everyone answers.

I'm thinking Miles opened Locke's eyes a little about Ben with his pound cake line.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Don't Make Me Pull This Computer Over!

I know I just posted about my NCAA trip next week, but this is really getting my goat. The Wife and I recently reorganized our CDs out of their cases and into a large CD folder. Since we buy albums from iTunes we don't go to the store and buy many CDs any more so this is saves a lot of space.

While organizing I notices a bunch of CDs were not ripped onto our computer (Stupid computer meltdown of aught 7!) I start to load them in with Windows Media Player because my MP3 player is not recognized by iTunes, and things were going fine till iTunes decided to open up every time I put in a new CD. SO I had two programs trying to rip music off of the same CD and it was causing things to go very slow.

It's now to the point I'm closing down iTunes every time it starts up. I'm not a fan of Windows Media Player, yet because of the fact iTunes won't allow non iPods to come in and play I'm stuck with this stupid situation.

The Streak is Alive

Today starts the NCAA tournament and I had been a little sad that I was not going to cover it, well that changed. Since UNC is playing in Raleigh we don't need the extra crews, but next week I am heading to Charlotte if North Carolina moves on. I know it's a lot of work, but I enjoy it. You are on the road, it's just me and a couple people and no management. How great is that! I will attempt to do what I did last year and blog the entire experience.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Bunnies

Last week I was asked by my church to create a video for them and the above is the result. I've always wanted to try stop motion animation, and now I have and it's going to take a lot to get me to do it again. It was a lot of fun, but you have to move each piece little by little and hope it looks good in the end.

I am very proud of this video and I need to get my creativity out somehow. This at least was a creative and productive way to get the crazy out of my system

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

My Day

This might sound like a random post, but I'm going to just do this as a kind of log of my day. In news weird things happen and today was just odd. I don't know why, maybe the reason is I was working with The Serg, those days always seem odd.

When I got to work I could not get into the building. For the past year and few months we have been using these key fobs" on our key chains, but that was not good enough. They recently decided to go with the lanyard and ID bag. There has been some discourse over this system, but I don't care, we had it at The Network and it was fine. The problem was, I'm not use to the badge yet and I left it at home. So all day I had to either borrow some one's badge or coordinate my comings and goings with people schedules. Of course I'm the first one to forget my badge... yeah me. I know I have a tendency to be a little flaky, but to be the first really sucks.

It's hard to explain working with The Serg sometimes, it's not a bad thing, but our conversations go all over the place. We have had actually people listen into our conversations and tell us we are strange. We had time to kill so we stopped off at a local coffee shop called the Mad Hatter. That led to me talking about why the mad hatter was actually crazy. I though it was starch in the hat, but, it's actually mercury vapor used in hat making. Then that divulged into crazy relatives, and then into all the people around us using lap tops, then strange movie characters. It's rather fun way to waste time, I never know where the conversation may lead but I will know that it will some how always go back to Emo Phillips, Paul Lynn, Las Vegas New Mexico, and Ice Pirates.

While at the Mad Hatter I was asked "What kind of milk?" for my drink. I was confused, many of you might know what she was getting at, I missed it by a mile. As I was about to say cow she could tell I was about to say something stupid. "You know skin, 2% or whole." I seriously thought they had options on what animal the milk came from. This was a froo froo coffee place and you never know, maybe I had a choice between cow, goat, llama or some other exotic animal.

We finally get back to our OH SO exciting story... drought and construction at city hall. If you want to know my least favorite story ideas that's all three right there: drought, new construction whoas and meetings. Plus we had one of our beat reporters there as well, she was not pleased we were on "her turf," but hey, I didn't pick the story. Well, our story changed within the first 10 minutes of the story. Durham city council honored the officers that caught the suspected killer of Eve Carson and Abhijit Majahato. It's a meeting, but the mayor wants to find out why these guys were let out on bond with multiple court hears within the near future. He felt that they system did not check itself and Durham has to do something so this will not happen again. I'm giddy, this is much better than our other story, yet who gets it... us the night side crew or the beat reporter. I look at it this way, dayside are the lions we are the hyenas and they are the other animals. You see our original story was taken by dayside so we had to find something else and that else was Durham city council. In the wild the hyenas kill the prey and then the lions scare off the hyenas and have their fill. The hyenas get the left overs and what ever is left is up for grabs. I hate doing that to the beat reporter, but we HAD to turn something that night, and she didn't fight for the story so I don't feel guilty.

Maybe it was karma for taking the story, but I almost did not get the story on air. We get back a little later than we wanted, so there was not a large room for error. The Serg's laptop started freaking out and he couldn't log everything that was recorded. By the time I got it, my laptop started to get a little nutty. The docking station would not read my external hard drive that had all my Eve Carson file. My computer froze and I had to restart it, then it would not open the editing software. I finally had to give up using my computer and work in an edit bay. I had 25 minutes to get it done. In news when you are in a crunch and need total concentration, everyone wants to talk to you. The Serg asked where the video was, and the producer kept asking how I was doing. I finally snapped back "If people would stop bothering me I'll get it done!" I got it in 5 minutes before the start of the show. I've only missed "slot" once, and that's because the guy taking in my story was being picky about audio and had me keep making changes, so I don't even count that as my fault. When will they realize that I will get things done, I know we are the lead and if I can't get it done the show goes to hell in a hand basket.

Friday, March 14, 2008

I thought Learning Physics Was Tough

I am confused about tonight's episode of Lost, I'm not 100% sure what actually happened, but I'll give it a shot. For the post part it was about Jin and Sun as we find out that Sun is the 6th member of the Oceanic 6 (I'm taking partial credit, I thought it would be Jin). We find out that Sun has made it off the island and is giving birth. Then there is the tricky thing that is throwing me off. They kept showing Jin, King Tom thinks it is a flash back to throw us off, I am not too sure about that. Maybe he is alive and he is working for Ben or Witmore, either way that can not be good.

I was shocked at how Juliet convinced Jin and Sun to stay on the beach. I think telling Jin about Sun's affair was a very Ben move. I think she wants off the island like the rest of the losties, but there is something there that almost seems that she is going to stay. Maybe Ben has a stronger hold on her than she realizes.

The biggest shock of the episode is the return of Micheal I mean Kevin Johnson. Other people who find little nuggets of information realized this weeks ago, I did not so I was surprised by Micheal being the one who is Ben's informant on the boat. I guess Ben convinced him to help him a little bit more, "Hey I helped you get off the island, I need your help."

What is up with everyone killing themselves on the boat? What effect does the water around the island do? One woman jumps off the ship and another blows his brains out. Man, note to self, so not go on any freighter trips to islands of mystery.

Overall this was a good episode, but after what we got two weeks ago and part of last week this was a little bit of a downer. If this episode would have happened last year it would have been a top 10 instead it's only going to end up in the middle... I hope. With only 16 episodes for this seasons, there can't be that many meh shows. No random thoughts because, well there wasn't many.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

The Things We Do

As I am typing this I am sitting outside the lovely Durham county courthouse awaiting for my story and subsequent live shot. If you had not heard they finally caught the second guy that may have killed UNC student Eve Carson. That happened Chapel Hill, so why am I in another county? Not because he was arrested here, it's because he may have killed someone else prior to Eve. I know this post is sounding a little morbid, and depressing... well like the news, but my tale is not about this story, but what we do in our waiting time.

I'm with The Serg and when we are working together it's like pop culture overload. Tons of obscure references and silly comments. While standing on the porch trying to get someone to answer the door, I thought of a new game. Who's career would you rather have. You basically take two celebrities and decide who you'd rather be.. ie the first one was Prince or Bon Jovi; we both picked Prince. The Serg asked Tina Turner or Cher, I went with Cher, because I didn't want to deal with the beatings of Ike Turner, yet I had to consider that video where she was wearing that duct tape and fish net thing... I don't thing that would look good on me. Next was who would you rather be, the other guy from Wham! or Oats. It was decided Oats because at least I knew his name.

Here are a few more you to mull over:

Rodney Dangerfield or Oingo Boingo
Bangles or the Go Gos
Jean Claude Van Dam or Steven Seigel
Bobby Brown or one of the guys from Bel Biv Devo
One of the guys from Color Me Bad or one of the guys from O Town
The guy who was Alf or the guy who was HR Puff n Stuff
Charles Neslon Rieley or Paul Lynn
Men With Out Hats or Dexies Midnight Rinners or Flock of Seagulls

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Stupid Random!

I've been busy, and have been wanting to post, yet I haven't found the gumption to sit down and write one. I didn't even do a Lost post this week! Well I am forcing myself to get at least one post out, so I might as well make it a random one.

"Back" in the field
OK the back sprain is healing pretty good and I think I am ready to go shot again. Well, it might also be that I am sick of show editing. I've not touched a camera for two weeks now and I need to start up again. I've got a small amount of discomfort when I sit, but we will see about carrying heavy items around. At times I fell the station thinks I want to get out of shooting, why else am I always getting injured? I just need to do more preventive work like stretches and actually lifting the proper way. My goal is no more injuries for at least one year. Stop laughing.. seriously, I want to be injury free for a year. OK, I'll go for 6 months, that's a good start.
Dog Watch March 08
For the last year we have had a battle of will in our house, baby vs dog. You can probably figure out who wants what. My argument is that we start with a dog and then we can see how we do there and then go for the baby thing. It's kind of like The Wife's brother and his wife, they got a dog, everyone but them realized she was going to be crazy and now that they have a baby, she is well, crazy.

Well The Wife decided to meet some of our neighbors and guess what they had... A PUPPY! and she fell in love with it. To make things even more awesome, they told her my idea was a good one. I finally won a battle!!!! I felt like there should have been balloons and confetti dropping from the ceiling. We started a search and came across Odie on craigslist. We have been emailing back and forth and then we could not check our email on Sunday and from that point on it went quiet. I emailed twice on Monday and no response, finally I open my email and see a message from the woman... Odie may be adopted to someone else. The current owner for some reason took no emails on Sunday as several days. We both would love to have this dog, now it looks like we may have to move on. We'll try and give updated.
"You Ain't No Kind of Man if You Don't Own Land"
That quote came from the movie O Brother Where Art Thou one of my favorite movies, and from it you can probably figure out we are looking at buying a house... sort of. This past Sunday, we had lunch with some friends and they happen to live near a house for sale. We look at it and it's a nice house and then we see the price has been dropped. The builder is actually selling it for less than it's worth. Then an agent just happens to show up. We are thinking this house has to be for us what are the odds of all this happening?

We look at the house and think it would be a great place to buy. Then comes the part I feared the most... figuring out how we can get a loan. You see back in aught 5 I subconsciously decided that credit was not that important and well, destroyed it. Money wise, I'm fine, yet they look at that score and cringe and usually hang up. The Wife's credit is much better, but she doesn't make enough, so we have constant problems with anything that involves credit.
I call a group that specializes in first time home mortgages and amazingly enough we get approved and at 6% fixed. Considering that is no money now... not too bad, then the bad part, the payments are 180 dollars more than we pay in rent now. We could probably make that payment, but things would be tight. We have done well in getting rid of some of our debt, I'd have to see us revert back to having problems. It's kind of hard to get that close and then find out that everything is just out of reach. At least I now know that I can buy a house if we want to.

Basketball Postseason
For the past 6 years I have been able to cover some form of basketball post season. I thought I was about to make it 7 till I was pulled from the ACC women's tournament because of "overtime" issue. Then I threw my back out and the point was mute. It just feels odd not having to travel cover pressers and rushing around trying to feed out video. It was always a lot of work, but I loved it. It all started with the MAC tournament when I was in West Virginia, I got to see Antonio Gates play basketball not football. I covered three years of high school basketball in Ohio and got to see OJ Mayo, Raymar Morgan and Bill Walker play. Last year I covered North Carolina in Winston-Salem and then East Rutheford, New Jersey.

There were rumors that I would run the sat truck, but they installed new equipment and I have no idea how to work the truck now. There could be an outside shot, but I'm not holding my breathe. We are short two photographers and no way are they going to give anyone up to sports. Yet another era for me ends.
This will be the first time in 6 years I won't have to cover basketball on my birthday so that's a nice trade off. I normally hate birthdays and usually bad things happen around them. Nothing horrible, just random bad days that make me not want to have birthdays. This year I was hoping to get Odie, but now I might get to go to the Bentonville Battlefield reenactment. I know a Civil War reenactment... I'm a dork. I like the Civil War, it was an interesting time in our country and I live near the final battle sight so I'm going to see the reenactment.