Friday, February 27, 2009

Van Chancellor's Comedy Hour

As the seconds tick away from me calling it a day a presence larger than yours truly casts shadow over the desk. Not a shadow of "doubt" but one of "we need a huge favor from you". With the constant maintenance of the O.T., the sports guys and gal didn't staff the LSU Women's basketball game against their rivals from Rocky Top. Turns out it was bigger than they thought. So with some hesitation I loaded up the CRV and made my way to the House the "Pistol Pete" built.
Little did I know that I was going to be entertained by some amateur comedian. Turns out that comedian was Van Chancellor, the women's basketball coach. Now keep in mind he just coached his team through physical contest against one of the premier programs in the country. Fresh off an impromptu victory lap across the arena he sits down, kicks the feet up, and starts whaling away. Naturally he answers the easy questions about the game but the reporters across the table are salivating for the perfect quote to splash across the airwaves. All this while he has the entire room slapping themselves silly while he's delivering one funny moment after another. So as he delivers his spiel he turns towards me and asks, "Are you from Tennessee?" I tell him no and he's thankful. "Good I didn't want to offend anybody". So the questions keep on coming...

Reporter: "Coach (Pat) Summit says similar situation two young teams but Coach Chancellor did a better job coaching his team..."

Chancellor: "Who said that?"

Reporter: "Pat Summit."

Chancellor: "Oh lord, she's the greatest con person in America. (room's laughing) Oh Lord. If she was in Starkville she would say the same thing about Shannon Fannie. I like Pat she is a sweet woman."

At this point I start looking around to tip my server at the comedy club. Turns out that he's always like that. Whether it's regular season, post season, practice. Yes we're talking about practice. Just don't worry about the game the highlight of the evening comes during the post game interview. Mr. Chancellor if this coaching thing doesn't work for you there's always the Apollo Theater, did you know?

Monday, February 23, 2009


I've always enjoyed a good laugh. So when Meeks showed me this guy I thought, "How would things be with him in the newsroom"?

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Bear Essentials

We are just like any other office. Each person has a task that fits into the puzzle of the final product. The desk deals the assignments. The reporters and photographers try to make them interesting. And the producers try to organize a flow of events without everything crashing down on them in the blink of an eye. Just a reminder that we are all human. The routine of working sources for an interview or getting the location of Pookey's current escapade can wear down even to most seasoned person in the business. There are times that we have to lighten up. Take a few moments to release that pent up tension in the workplace. I had to go and do some recruiting and I found these two.

The one wearing the glasses is "Ty Bear". Her friend behind her "C Bear". Just found them out in the Raggedy and they wanted to see what it was like inside the wall of the news asylum. Alright time to leave the Fuzzy Mic alone and get to work.
Ah, working the phones. Must be something big going down in the warehouse district. Wait a minute I didn't know we had a warehouse district.

I see Ty is on the computer. Updating the web is important. Never know when that breaking email alert is needed. Very nice. Very nice. But probably their most important job.....

....just putting a smile on everyone's face. It always good to unwind just a little. I'm sure C-Line and the Nubian Princess will continue to show them the ropes in this place.

Take Me Out To The Ball Game

As the sun went down the crisp chilled air picked up. A night of celebration and new beginnings were upon us. Depending on your calender Christmas had come 12 months early or was delayed by 6 weeks. The eager anticipation of unwrapping the new present had arrived. And it arrived in the form of a new $30 million baseball stadium dubbed the "New" Alex Box. Gone are the old grandstand, the tight quarters, and the Intimidater. Enter a new 9,000 seat facility for the Purple and Gold faithful to start their quest for a conference title and maybe a return trip to College Baseball's Mecca with a national championship in their sights. The scribes are ready to start a new lore in the school's baseball history.
As for the Raggedy, we had other plans. When 30 extra large is dropped and talk of being at the upgraded Box is all anyone is talking about then time is cleared in the newscast and we must fill it. Simple actually. Get the truck in position, make sure everything works, and putting the talent in front of the camera to show everyone at home what their missing. The joy of seeing the first pitch. The first strikeout. The first time some sent one over the fences. And now matter how cold it was this was the place to be if you were a baseball die hard. Mission accomplished. There are going to be some stories to tell from this place.
Looks like they have gotten off to a chilly start.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Another Black Eye

What happened? Why did it come to this? How in the world could a game of high school hoops deteriorate in an all out street fight. I'm thankful I've never been caught up in something like this. Not knowing who's or what is coming from some unknown direction. This will garner some national attention. It of course will be investigated with no logical reason of what escalated the melee. Someone gave a hard foul. Then someone said something about someone's mom and the rest is surfing across countless media waves around the country. Once again acts of good play and sportsmanship take a backseat to immature acts on the hardwood.

I thought everyone learned from the infamous Brawl in NBA. Guess I was wrong. Ya'll have to see this to believe it.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

We All Need Hugs

I always believe that hard work deserves some attention. Whether it be with a reward or simply saying "Job well done". With help from the Turdpolisher, we were able to spread our message to the masses last year. So after handling Friday's Triskaidekaphobia then showing our affection on V-Day, another would be holiday has sprung up before President's Day. Time for us to come together again.

Someone has introduced us to "Hug A Journalist Day".

"This is just a fun thing I started to make us all feel better. It's not affiliated with any news organization or journalism organization. It's just me trying to be nice". - Judy Tong

Ms. Tong, I've have never met you but this a noble and long over due thought. A day not just for my fellow lens jockeys but for all our comrades who day in and day meet countless and never ending deadlines to inform and entertain the mass number of people. A day for the ones who must update the website every other second. A day just to say "Thank you for all that you do".

From the Big Raggedy to the Big Easy you are appreciated. From Jackson, Birmingham, and all the way to the Carolina's your work is appreciated.

I will take this idea to the Phallus Palace then the steps of the U.S. Capital to make this an annual holiday. Until then .....

.....let's give each other a hug and be thankful for what we love to do.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

PETA Patrol

No matter what they do in the past they will try and find a way to walk the razor's edge without getting a scratch. The "they" in question is the group known has PETA. Known for dressing up like their animal counterparts, this is what they live for. The off the wall get everyone talking about them to hopefully draw followers to their cause. So after producing a 30 second spot that was denied play during the Super Bowl the animal rights group has taken to the streets of the Big Raggedy.
With the news beast's insatiable appetite for the off the wall, Meeks was chosen to find out what he could on the latest exhibition of the group. This looks somwhat tame compared to their other stunts. My only question, what in the world will they do next?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Barber Shop????

You never know what you are going to find at the Big Raggedy. In these tough economic times you have to pick up a few side jobs. Looks like Charles is practicing to become a barber. I think.
Probably should have gotten a better subject, did you know??

Monday, February 9, 2009

Senator Stormy?????

Politics make strange bedfellows especially in this state. The list of figures aspiring for the status elite in Louisiana's Political World is a long one. From Huey P. Long and his radical populist policies to the current Governor, Bobby Jindal, and his efforts for state reform. All look for seats of change whether they be in the Phallus Palace or at the steps of Capital Hill. Many have come and gone all are unique characters in their own right.

So now enter one Stormy Daniels. Yes that Stormy Daniels. Adult Entertainer, star of mainstream movies, dancer of cabarets across America, and one of the most downloaded women in the world. She just so happens to be a resident of Baton Rouge and the focus of a grass root campaign to possibly become the next Jr. Senator for the State of Louisiana.

"2010 presents the Pelican State with the opportunity to start with a clean slate -- to elect a representative that we can be proud of, who will work tirelessly, and who will challenge the status quo. We at the Draft Stormy campaign feel that Baton Rouge native Stormy Daniels is best suited to fulfill these duties," the web site reads.

Questions of this being a legit run for office or just a publicity stunt are now making the rounds across the media world. The election is a over a year away and she hasn't said that she is running for the Senate seat. Again she hasn't said that she is running only considering her options. However, if she does run I wonder who's going to volunteer to follow the campaign.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Candles for Kaitlin

Improvise. That was the password last night. Here is the scenario. Two late newscasts, one anchor, no reporters, and the lack of a lead story. Don't know how we are going to get through this one but improvisation is going to take center stage.

Then Memphis, the 10pm producer, informs me of my assignment. "Need you to go to a candlelight vigil". "Alright. Where is it", I replied. "It's in French Settlement. It's a vigil for Kaitlin Aydell". That's a name that I haven't heard in a long time but some stories stay with you long after they air.

The last time I saw the Aydells was in a Livingston courtroom. Danette, Kaitlin's mom, was getting justice. And it was a long time coming. Now it was time for reflection.

As the fire was passed around and words of comfort were spoken you got a sense that something unique was happening. You felt that someone with a good heart and playful spirit was encouraging everyone to be strong. We'll all get into the heavens one day. Once the hugs went around everyone was showing their thanks for us being there.

Unfortunately, my work was just getting started. The Raggedy was a good half hour away with the 10pm looming. As I'm driving back thoughts of a nat piece was being edited in my head but it wasn't needed. Turns out that Ms. Mercedes, who covered the story from pillar to post, had a script drawn out for us. All we had to do now was get the sound in to tell the story.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Stand Up Art

If it hasn't reached your newsroom by know then it is coming. The adventures of one KGTV's Joe Little. Covering news stories in San Diego, must be nice this time of year, the "digital correspondent" is gaining attention with some unique and colorful stand ups.

Different type of framing, use of sequences, and a little non linear magic is causing management go into shock and awe while throwing down the gauntlet to the staff. I remember shooting some of these with my buddy Matt Clough. The "Clough-esque" feature as it was dubbed at the Raggedy. See if can find some more of these in the archives.

While all of this is nice and very well done it's somewhat hard to do when chasing Pookey and the gang all around town.

But let it be known, Mr. Little, your work isn't going unnoticed and I thank you for sharing it with us.

Prison Problems

We've all been there. You get something new and it doesn't feel right until you break it in. Cars, shoes, new pair of jeans, etc. The same can be said for the new Parish Prison over in Livingston. New building, new look, new computer system. All things that will take time to get use to. While the new facility is going through its maiden voyage the newsroom is flooded with calls about, how the local S.O. is not releasing people from its confines. People complaing that it is taking hours to process the release forms of the accused. Me personally why are you locked up in the first place. You don't anything stupid and you won't be in that situation. Here's what KN and I were able to put on the news. By the way this isn't Monopoly where you can get a "Get Out of Jail Free" card, did you know???