The day started out in a hurry as I rushed out to do court duty. Court duty means you will either be sitting in the hallways of your local courthouse waiting for lawyers, witnesses, etc. Or you will actually be inside videotaping whatever newsworthy case happens to be ongoing. Today I did neither. Today there weren't any folks to interview in the hallways or lobbies and it wasn't my turn to do the shooting (the courtroom cameraman's gig is rotated between television stations). Which means I got to sit inside and watch a couple of witnesses take the stand on a local murder trial. However, that did make me responsible jotting down the soundbyte highlights.
I was then off to a Hazardous Material call at the Honolulu Police station. I never did find out what that was all about as I had to quickly run off to cover a house fire. The flames had been extinguished by the time I arrived (unfortunately the homeowner has over $300k in damages!) so I got the clean up, interviews with fire officials and neighbors and some pics from some onlookers who had caught the billowing smoke on their cell phones. Almost pau I raced back to the station, ingested all of my video, and as we were crunching for time I also helped to log write and edit all of the above.
Kailua House Fire
Okay here it goes. For the first time in my legendary cute blogging history, I am going to use this medium, this venue of mine, this potentially massive-audience-culler (28 hits on my last post alone, Bam!) to shamelessly plug an interest of mine.
Books, Books, Books.
Where would we be without books? Where would fascination and wonder be archived without books. In movies and shows? Ha! Even that library of "visually recorded" stories pales in size compared to the volumes of written work available to us world round. Which means millions and millions of ideas, tales and facts about anything and everything is right there for us, begging to be read. you and I and all of the growing children around us can simply open a book and be taken away. You simply open a book and the greatest possible journey begins. Books about adventures in far away places. Or about the history of simple folk like you and me. Figures who have taken the world to task and physically changed the make up of right and wrong fueled simply by the basic human necessity to make a thing right. Fiction or non-fiction, it's all there in print to be read, for anyone with the freedom to do so and enjoy.
Yet.... yes sadly... there it is. The big YET. We see the big YET everytime a writer first charms you with a promising and uplifting hook (see above) then swiftly cuts the rug from under ya! baiting you for the big reveal:
Most "after-school programs serving low-income populations have no age-appropriate books for the children they serve". -First Book.
An organization called First Book found this out years ago and has taken the task of trying to fulfill a much needed resource for children throughout communities across the nation.
It is a simple online contest which you go to, write about the first book that got you hooked, then you cast a vote for your State. If your State wins the contest they will donate 50,000 books to the kids of that State!
50,000 books! Please help out with this if you can, pass this link on to everyone and anyone. Let's win this one for Hawaii: http://booksforkids.firstbook.org/whatbook/about.php
If there's one thing I love about this job is getting to run into the heroes that save the day. First and foremost, of course are the firefighters, police, military etc. It goes without saying that these folks are an amazing bunch and nothing they do on a daily basis is ever diminished for it's heroism in my eyes.
However, every now and then you get the folks who don't do this on a daily basis and yet still take a risk to do a part in their community.
In my business I have the good fortune to meet a lot of these people. Sometimes we get to profile them. Other times, for whatever reason, we don't always get the chance to tell their story on air.
So here's a quickpost about this guy. (photo removed)
Just after 2am early this morning the I Love Country Cafe caught fire. Officials are saying it started in the restaurant's kitchen. As the flames began to become visible through the roof, an Ala Moana security guard quickly jumped into action. He managed to pull one of the emergecy fire hoses from the Ala Moana parking lot out towards the quickly growing fire next door.
The photo shows him several minutes before the Fire department arrived already dousing the flames which at one point I witnessd myself were reaching up about 10 feet over the structure's wall. Once fire arrived he continued to pour water onto the structure until fire had it all under control.
My hat's off to yet another brave person going above and beyond duty to maintain what could have been even more devastating for several businesses nearby.
Update: In respecting his wishes I have removed the photo of the security guard at his request. But you know who you are my friend, :) great job out there!
OMG! it's the OMB!
What's the OMB you ask? You mean you don't know?! Well, the OMB's been coming our way for a long time, and guess what? It's finally here.
If only you knew what dread the OMB has cast upon so many of my peers in the television business. You'd think the OMB was directly tied to the Swine Flu, sitting here waiting for it's imminant arrival but hoping it never actually affected anyone of us in particular.
But alas, that "hope and a prayer" approach has proven fruitless. The OMB is here and will only grow.
Of course, it won't affect me one bit. Yup that's right, immunity baby! Why? Because I think the OMB should've been a part of local TV news since the start. You see this job begs for the OMB. Chasing stories, with light portable gear, Do It Yourselfer's that can get in and get out and put a good story on the air.
Okay! Okay, I know what you're thinking. Are you sure Oscar? Do you really want to embrace this, this thing that so many have feared for so long. Perhaps they're right? Maybe they know exactly what OMB means and you just haven't thought it out well enough? What if in the end OMB completely wipes out the industry as you know it? I mean look, OMB sounds like, "the promise of a better future" but realize, with every promise of "a new era" comes new unseen obstacles. Do the negatives outweigh the positives? Perhaps. Maybe it isn't a good thing to go 100% OMB. I do think the folks in the biz who are masters of there craft already probably shouldn't be expected to be OMB. But I've said it before this job is catered for OMBing.
But most importantly (as it's been pointed to me while confronted out in the streets for doing OMB work), squeezing two jobs into one and promoting loss of jobs?
Well let's review: The economy took the big flush, businesses and homeowners lost their shorts, and desperation set in. Those who are surviving are doing so by taking creative (drastic?) but necessary measures. Our company in particular is joining forces with another local television station in the same town. The drop: big time lay-offs.
Guess what? No matter how you spin it, The OMB had nothing to do with it. People are losing their jobs regardless. The very thing that the OMB naysayers predicted would happen if TV stations went the way of OMBs.
Why don't I blame the OMB? It's just like when tape took over film, memory cards took over tape and non-linear computer editing took over manual-tape editing. All of these changes and countless others had all of us, in turn, lamenting the end of an era(s). Yet through simple climatization periods we all adjusted and rather easily I might add (even the old timers). OMB is just another "change" in my book. With a little time, routine and dust-settling, we'll look back and laugh at when OMB was a bad word (acronym). Then we'll light our cigars and speed off to breaking news, by ourselves, in our OMB mobiles.
In the end, Wall Street not the OMB, did us in. Soon I'll know whether I'll have a job or not, at which point I'll either be an OMB or I'll just be S.O.L.
The original OMB