Saturday, January 31, 2009

100 and Counting

It's no secret, I admire history. The thrill of capturing the once in a lifetime moment. The event where you can, "I was there". So it has to something of great importance to get me to work on the weekend. "LSU is celebrating 100 years of Basketball and sports needs some help", the desk told me. I sense a special in the works.

So as I claim a spot on the floor I see pages of history moving up and down the floor in the house that Marivich built. Then I get a text message, "Make sure Hi C looks goods". XRAY TED was in the house. He was more of the LSU Basketball historian than I. Too bad I missed getting a shot of him in the stands. I guess he just want to soak in the moment.

As for me, I knew of some of the success the program had but knowledge of the glory days was before my time. That and the fact I wasn't really into basketball.

The all time leading scorer in college basketball was a no brainer. Then there were the others. The player who led the school in rebounds, the kid who's game winning shot got the Tigers to the '86 Final Four, and the young man who broke the color barrier.

It was a sight to see. 16 of the All Time Greats. Their names forever linked in the lore of Tiger Basketball. Like I said before, I admire history.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

The Media Circus

The week of the Super bowl is here and I'm finding it somewhat difficult to get interested in the game. The Cowboys aren't there. The Titans, thanks to the Ravens, couldn't make it. The for mentioned birds felt the pain of the Steelers. And the Saints....are the Saints. Go figure.
So if the game isn't drawing attention the annual Circus known as Media Day is. Thank God I don't have to deal with that scrum. The only time where my media brothers and sisters get full access to the players and coaches in the big game. And sometimes leaving us asking, "What in the world are we doing?"
How many times will "If you were a tree what tree would you be?" be asked. Then there are the off the wall reports as well as some impromptu dance lessons. Hell I even managed to find some stories from our network that got to go. How they got there I don't know but Heaven with be them. I'll settle for watching commercials, and maybe the game, from the comforts of home did you know?

Monday, January 26, 2009

Operation: Mardi Gras

It's that time once again. The Carnival season is upon us. Time to break out the masks, ball gowns, and plastic beads and celebrate. Unfortunately some of our men and women serving in our Armed Forces will have to sit out on the celebration. Then again maybe not.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Night on Ice

One of the secrets to life is opening yourself to new experiences. I've always been one to try something once just to say I did it and keep the door open on doing it again. So when the idea of, "Let's go ice skating" was tossed around some crazy thoughts were spiraling in my head. Ice skating in South Louisiana? There are stranger things in this town. So off to Leo's Ice Rink, which I thought shut down years ago, to continue the cool odyssey.

There going to be some surprises on this night. First up, the skates. I'm guessing that there aren't many size 15's around and I was right. Best they could do was a 14. I'm shocked they could find those. Guess they don't stock sizes for Abominable Snowmen. The shock continues when the skates fit. Who would have guessed. To the ice and the inevitable happens.....

.....I'm laid out on the ice. I knew it was going to happen. No surprise there. Thank goodness it wasn't on a pond. Not even Capital Correspondent/Olympic hopeful Caroline Moses could get the Senator moving.
A sore tail was worth a good time by everyone. Alright C-line just get me to the penalty box and I'll watch you get ready for the 2012 Winter Olympics. Right after I get the health insurance updated, did you know?

Shoe Smack

From time to time I like to peruse the family of networks incorporated with the Big Raggedy just to see what else is happening in the world. And I'll usually find something that will catch my eye or leave me saying, "Huh?" Up in Buckeye Land there is a warning going around not from the weather or some impending act of chaos. But from all things... shoes. But not just any shoes. Rather some fine footwear made famous from an earlier decade and a style of dancing. Shoes that left one man struggling to breathe as well as think clearly. Maybe he could have taken lessons from a former president, did you know?

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Warrick's Way

If you are from Baton Rouge then you know of her son named Warrick Dunn. A person small in size but great in stature. His accomplishments on the football field are those of legend. He was All State Quarterback in high school. Later becoming an All American during his college days at Florida State. Those talents eventually led to a career in the National Football League. So far his 12 year career has spawned nearly 11,000 rushing yards, three trips to the Pro Bowl, and an endless fanbase across the nation. All of this while missing a grand total of 11 games in his life as a pro. That's someone who comes to work. Believe it or not, this isn't what defines him. It is the events outside of the boundaries of the football field that carved his character. Unfortunately one of those events led to tragedy.

January 7, 1993. Cpl. Betty Smothers, a Baton Rouge Police officer, was killed in the line of duty. The loss of his mother trusted Warrick to be the head of his family's household. He had to grow up in real short amount of time. But he wasn't alone. A city rallied around him and his five siblings. A place full of strangers showing care and compassion to those who lost the pillar of their foundation. Then again Warrick Dunn was like a member of Baton Rouge's family.

It was nineteen years ago that a show called Sportsline Friday Nite hit the airwaves. Designed to build upon the lore that is high school football in south Louisiana. In it's debut, a younger Warrick Dunn provided one highlight after another. Everyone knew of the kid from Catholic High.

But nobody knew the impact he would bring back to his community. His foundation helps single parent families live the dream of buying their first home. His larger than life persona leaves many in awe. But if you ask him he isn't fond of being in the spotlight. So when Steve Schneider, our sports director, approached Warrick about doing a Player of the Year award named in his honor he dodged it. Just what he does when playing against some linebacker. However two years ago he changed his mind and wheels started turning. Just has he has impacted single parent families he now does the same for some our local football talent across the region. This award does more than recognize a player's accomplishments on the field but the character displayed off it as well.
Just like B.R.'s favorite son.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

It's Official

After a two year campaign, including a stop in the Big Raggedy, it happened. Ideology turned to possibility. The dream became a reality. History unfolding before our eyes as Barack Obama was sworn in as the 44th President of the United States. The anticipation. The excitement.

Man I wish I was there. To see this play out in person would have cool. Alas the network will have to do the heavy lifting. That didn't mean we were going to have an off day. The folks at the Raggedy had to go in full swing.

From universities to middle schools to barber shops. Every possible angle was going to make the news. So after the shift ended it was time to sit back and soak in everything. I'm going to remember this day for awhile.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Dream Lives On

“Faith is taking the first step even when you don’t see the whole staircase.”

To truly realize and value where we are going we must first look back to path that was laid. The country is continuing to write a new book in history. But it is important to look back at the chapters that were already written. I've read the to books, seen the old film on some of the most remarkable events in time.

Fast forward to the present. It's good to see the elders tell their stories to the next generation. To tell of their trials that led to the simple things that we enjoy today. I'm sure it wasn't the cool thing to do. So they sacrificed and endured until change happened. And change made this country better. For that I thank you for the path you laid before us. Now it's our turn to walk the path and bring along the next generation.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Scrum For News

In our efforts to bring nourishment to the beast, Field Crews must endure a countless number of obstacles. From the "Drive Thru Diet" to the dreaded "Live Cluster". But one situation that your are sure to come across is the expected Scrum. Looks like C-Line and XRAY TED found it. Big thanks to my friend Author for capturing this one. The goal? A group of reporters to get in as many questions as you can in a small amount of time. The target, usually someone of importance who wants to talk but will have a "coordinator" keep tabs on every second. So every question must count since this game has no reset button. Some want info on money matters that affect the masses. While others are sent for goundbreaking moments. No matter who you work for the goal is the same. Get in position, fire questions, and pray you get something worth reporting. Oh and trying not to get in the way of security, did you know?

Monday, January 12, 2009

Adventures In Daycare

OK. Let's be honest. There is not much excitement when you go to school board meetings. However there is the chance you'll find someone that will try to be the center of attention.
So after getting all we can from the meeting we find Little David. Who has become infatuated with of all things the Fuzzy Mic. We aren't going to talk to mom without David getting the Fuzzy Mic. Maybe we can divert his attention with something else. How about a cell phone.
That should work. Keep him occupied for a couple of minutes while mom talks to us.
He's tired of the phone. The Fuzzy has caught his eye once again. We're going to need dad's help for this interview.
If this photography things doesn't work maybe I can open a daycare. Everyone is looking for quality daycare. I wonder what to call it and how can I get enough Fuzzy Mics for all of the kids?

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The Bayou State's First Lady

Spending time in Huey's Phallus Palace will slowly turn you into a political junkie. You get to meet the movers and shakers. The lawmakers, the staff, and the lobbyists. You'll also get to meet the significant others from time to time. Usually they will try to stay out of the public eye and let their better halves fill time on the news. Then there is the current First Lady Supriya Jindal.
I remember the first time meeting her. It was about five or six years. Jennifer Hale and I went to the airport for a press conference involving her husband, who was returning from Washington D.C., concerning an important announcement. It wasn't rocket science to figure out he was considering a run for Governor but nothing official yet. So as we wait Jennifer, using her Reporter Jedi Mind Tricks, was trying to get something out Supriya but with a smile and laugh wouldn't spill the beans to us. As the wait and small talk continues something or rather someone grabs then hugs my leg. It was their little daughter. "She must have thought you were daddy." So we all get a laugh, get the emotional return, and cover the presser.

With time passing on I end up shooting alot of stories with the Jindals. From the first campaign, the in depth profile pieces, the successful run to the U.S. Congress, to the current role as Louisiana's First Family. But it was really during the Gustav coverage that proves she's different from most. I'm at a supply distribution point with Dave McNamara and word comes in that the 1st Lady is coming. No glitz. No glamour. No fanfare. Just a person concerned about the well being of others affected by the storm. So she goes and thanks the National Guard for what they are doing. Then goes and spread some words of encouragement to the people in line. Afterwards she turns to us. We do the usual act of getting some comments for the news. Once I put the camera and fuzzy mic down she says, "It's good to see you again. How are you and your family doing?" I respond that they were doing fine and that all of the trees fell the right way. Away from the houses. We get a good chuckle, shake hands and wish each other well.

That is what makes her a pleasant person to be around. She doesn't demand the spotlight but she isn't going to just sit idle either. I can respect that, did you know?

Saturday, January 10, 2009

No More Off Season

It is no secret that football is the premier sport in Louisiana. The High School level in particular has developed a following like none other. Largely in part to Sportsline. The weekly franchise highlight show that has spurred a cult following. The hats, the shirts, the magazines, the DVD's, and the footballs. You name it people must have it in this region. From the start of Summer Camps to the championship games it is expected for this craze to be present.
But there are other sports in the high school ranks that equally competitive. Why do they have to take a backseat to the players of the pigskin. With that thought the franchise has created another must have...The OT.
Sportsline OT. With success comes opportunity.
Basketball, wresting, volleyball, baseball, softball. Those will be on the agenda. Not to mention some unique stories that wouldn't get the deserved attention during football season.
You know it's got some teeth if the Turdpolisher is involved.
So as we embark on the maiden voyage that is the OT. One thing comes to mind. We aren't going to get an off season this year, did you know?

Walking Along The Interstate

There has to be something wrong with the drivers in the state of Louisiana. We experience a rare snow storm and there were little to no wrecks to respond to. Fast forward to today and you have this......
Six accidents in a five mile span of each other. It's going to be a long day. The cause of all this? A little rain plus some inattentive drivers. So I'm called in the check out the mangled metal while walking along an unexpected parking lot all because someone forgot the rules for driving while it rains.
Injury wise one person has life threatning injuries. The rest were minor. So far no fatalities we'll keep our fingers crossed. Just alot of people inconvenienced by others carelessness. Other than a walk across the muddy median things weren't too bad. I even had some familiar faces stroll into view of the lens.....
....The Nubian Princess and Meeks. A salute to you also. Time to get what we can and go. The last place we want to be is here when they reopen the lanes.
Let's hope that everyone is more careful next time. Or that the next traffic tie up happens within range of the fancy traffic cams.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Disturbance At The Lord's House

I know that someone made the New Year's Resolution to more active and involved in their church. Now what happened down in the Big Easy is somewhat perplexing.
Big thanks to the North Rampart District and the other outlets for this one. I'm thankful that things really didn't get out of hand.