Thursday, February 25, 2010

"It's A TRAP!!!!!"

One of the famous one liners from the Star Wars universe. Spoken by the fictitious character known as Admiral Ackbar of the Rebel Alliance, leader of the fleet that assisted in the demise of the mighty Empire from a galaxy far far away. A character embedded in the minds of those who watched the first trilogy created by George Lucas. No way would the chronicles of the most famous Mon Calamarian be a part of main stream media. Or so I thought. Turns out that the student body on the campus of Ole Miss has gone into the Jedi Archives.

In 2003, the decision made to do away with the one time iconic mascot known as Colonel Reb. The perception was that the old Rebel mascot was seen as offensive to most in an era of political correctness. Thus leading to the students looking for a new face to represent the university. Thus discussion of the Admiral to help lead one of the top universities in the south. It's not like he dosen't know what he doing. I don't know what will come from this but the Forum will give update once a decision is made.

Be mindful, I sense a disturbance in the Force, did you know?

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

You Want To Talk To Us???

Really? You want to talk to us? This almost never happens. Let me explain, a group of high school kids on a field trip to the halls of the station is a given fact of occurrence. Young minds with bright eyes and aspirations of making a career in front of the camera to be the next big star in the world of news and entertainment. Then this bunch became enamored with the peeps behind the viewfinder. Thankfully The Meeks, Big Moo, & yours truly were there to answer a few questions. The impromptu inquiry lead to us answering questions like, "How do I get more light on my interview"? Or, "What are ways I can make my shot steadier"? These are some well thought questions. Who knows, this could be the first step the next generation of cinematic geniuses. It was to showcase that there is more to television than hopping in front of the lens waiting for the red light to come on.

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Myth, The Legend, The Monkey

Not many can accomplish the improbable in a short period of time. Not many can travel the world and experience events a lifetime in the making. Then again not everyone is Nolan the Sports Monkey. In only a matter of months the newest persona has covered the Super Bowl, NCAA Baseball, and the fast paced action of the NBA. In spite of long hours and the lack of an expense account he allows his loyal faithful to live vicariously through his adventures that span the globe while documenting the moment.
I see the cult following has begun. Nolan you are one lucky monkey.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Must See TV

It's no secret that I love good stories and good story telling. Which is my one of my favorite times of the year is when the Award winners are announced. One of the creations of Kevin Johnson, is taking the craft of photography to the next level. It brings out the best of the best in our industry and gives a platform to show case the talents of the hard working men and women behind the viewfinder. Plus it gives me a chance to better my skills as a photographer. I see some of this work and I'm usually just uttering one word, "Wow". I haven't gotten a chance to see all of the winners, and the nominations, but this piece is one I thought I should share. It comes from the 2010 b-roller of the year, Leighton Grant of WLOS in Asheville, NC. It's about a family craft that spans generations but how long can it last?

Thanks for doing this Kevin. I look forward to seeing next year's pieces of art.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Sweet Caroline

It was February 2007 when we were graced by the presence of one Caroline Moses. Fresh from a stint in the mid west she came to the Raggedy with a ton of energy, an eagerness to learn, and infectious smile. I remember the first story we worked on, when a school bus driver found a lost baby wandering down a busy stretch of road. There were a few nerves but you handled yourself quite well out in the field. From that point on I knew you were going to be someone special. From the running through the halls of the Capital, to dealing with the madness on the streets, to cranking out hard hitting investigative stories that caught people with their hands in the cookie jar. I always enjoyed the time when we are partnered together on the assignment sheet. We would come up with some crazy plan to liven up the glowing picture box. If I was having a bad day you would be there to pick me back up and vice versa. You opened my eyes and while peaking my interest to try new things in life, wish I could have done yoga once. When the cards weren’t in our favor, we managed to pull off the improbable. We kept our focus and we had fun in the process.

I knew this day was coming. The day when another opportunity would present itself, an opportunity that you couldn’t pass up. Now you get to head home and reunite with your family. You get to bring your talents to WSVM where you make another lasting impression in television news. Our loss is their gain as you grace the airwaves of Music City with an unbridled passion to tell great stories that made you so good during your stay here.

You were a pleasure to work with and a blessing to know. You are a good reporter and a great friend. Thank you Caroline, thank you for everything. Just remember you will always have us here in South LA. And if you need a photographer just send up the Bat Signal, did you know?

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Commence au Festival!!!!

Time has come again. The season between Christmas and Easter has flown in with a vengeful flair of colorful trinkets, lots of creativity, and a ton of adult anti freeze. After all, it is cold right now in South LA this year. That season is Carnival. Where groups, or Krews as there’re known here, come together to put on some elaborate floats, decorative costumes, and muster up as much gratuitous nudity as humanly possible. At least enough until the cops come and put an end to the free peep show. The party extends from Lafayette all the way to the epicenter known as the Big Easy. This is the time of year where people go mad with sound of a walking jazz band and the hope of catching plastic beads thought to be worth more than gold.

Fortunately, the Raggedy was blessed with the festivities the Saturday before Mardi Gras. The Spanish Town parade made its annual pilgrimage through the streets of downtown Baton Rouge. A celebration that is part extreme satire and part family friendly. Who am I kidding this parade is all extreme satire. Thankfully, the jokes are so far over the kids’ heads that it doesn’t offend many in attendance. Thousands of revelers were ready to make their voices heard and a good time. Believe me there were some things that I couldn’t show on the blog. Even I had to draw the line somewhere. Don’t know what was louder, the peeps yelling “Throw me something!!!!” or “Put me on TV!!!!!” Either one got the attention of photog known as The Meeks, pictured above, as he found the best seat in the house while gathering enough pictures for the evening news. This is just what the doctor ordered to handle a long sweeps month. Not to worry y’all I didn’t flash anyone to get my beads. Nevertheless, for now laissez les bon temps rouler, est-ce que vous saviez?

Translation, "Let the good times roll, did you know"?

Friday, February 12, 2010

Another Sneaux Day???

Alright, alright this is getting a little redundant. Another snow day in South LA? The third one in the last 15 months. This is really hard to believe. Granted I can deal with most tropical disturbances, it's just a way of life down on the Gulf Coast. However when the white stuff is a mere mention you would think that we have reached the apocalypse. Normally I would be out with the fuzzy mic but since the snow came after the overnight shift, the desk was kind and let me come in a little later in the afternoon. By then any remains of Frosty would be long gone. So I'll just have to settle for the picture above to remind me that anything is possible, did you know?

Underdressed & Overexposed

Nothing screams excitement to a photographer than a banquet on the assignment sheet that you have to get to fill time in the fluff section of the rundown. The hustle of making it on time only to realize that you’ll stand out like one of Megan Fox’s thumbs.

The sight of someone in a pair of jeans or some camouflage shorts is usually a dead give away that you work in television news and your trying to blend into your surroundings. Eventually you come to the realization that Waldo is going to stay hidden longer than you. Standing around waiting for the event to start while dodging the wait staff delivering dinner to the donors of the evening. Good thing you have some running shoes to keep you light on your feet. No big deal just grab what pictures you can get the hope that there is something left on the fruit tray to eat since you won’t have to hit a drive thru on the way back to the newsroom. You can thank Pookey for the lack of nourishment.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Nation Uprising

What was once unimaginable is now inevitable. A franchise littered with horrific memories is about to rewrite the history books. In less than 24 hours the most watched sporting event on the planet will play host to the New Orleans Saints. A team with a fan base dying to forgive all of the past transgressions of wallow and misery for the sake of being crowned World Champion. Bottom line the fans here are going nuts over this causing the asylum to go into overdrive. In turn crews from the Raggedy were sent for a week long excursion to the 305 to document the historic exploits of the Who Dat Nation. While the rest of us had to hold down the home front of the ripple effect of the game winning field goal that sent the state into frenzy. Did I mention this is also in the first week of sweeps with Carnival season getting into full swing? However there was one burning question who would I be rooting for? It’s no secret that I don’t follow the Black and Gold. But I do respect what they are doing. Uniting people no matter race or color to stand united behind all of success they have delivered so far. After seeing the tears of joy from some of my friends, I hope the Saints pull this off. Besides, the Turdpolisher isn’t giving me much choice.
Oh well you know where is frozen over, might as well see this thing through. Might go throw a snowball at El Diablo, did you know?