Saturday, July 10, 2010

I knew this would happen...

See...I've gone an entire month without posting. I'm so bad at keeping up with this thing!!!
I need to do better.

Well, July 19 marks my first evaluation period in this PA Trainee program. I'm in the process of creating my "clip reel" to show my Prod Group members (the people that will vote for me to stay or not). The clip reel will include about 4 or so highlights I've produced--to show my progress in the first 3 months. At the end of my 7 month trainee period, the reel is a big chunk of what's gonna get me kept or not!
Thankfully, over the last month I've started to get WAY more comfortable doing highlights. I think it also helps for my sanity that I've been able to cut hils for a few games other than MLB. I like MLB...but the season lasts FOREVER. I'm ready for some freakin' football!

I'm proud of my World Cup hils because they are the first (and actually only) highlights I've done with absolutely no supervision. How did this happen, you ask? For the first couple of days of the World Cup I was put in charge of all the early World Cup games--being into work at 6:30am--supervisors don't come in until at least noon. SO, I had no choice but to get the hils on air for the 9a and Noon SportsCenters--with no one checking over my shoulder.
Those first highlights of the World Cup were 100% me. :)  I got no complaints about I guess no feedback is good feedback. Hopefully my Prod Group feels the same way...

The one highlight I am especially proud of (which I hope I can put up on here soon) is the one I produced for Game 1 of the CWS Championship...none other than South Carolina vs. UCLA. It meant a lot to me to be able to watch my team get one step closer to a national title (at WORK!)...and be able to show it on SportsCenter, exactly how I wanted the world to see it.
This highlight is definitely going on my reel. If you remember, game 1 was the game in which Blake Cooper held a no hitter through most of the game. I had Orel Hershiser feed me some commentary (from the booth in Omaha) on our pitching performance--and super imposed what's called a 'SOT Box' of him talking over video of Blake kicking ass on the mound.
Using things like SOT Boxes in my highlights will up the "production value" of my reel...and hopefully make it stand out.

In any case, this past week or so has been full of emotion for me. It sounds stupid, but I cried so hard when I watched my guys win the National Championship. For those of you who knew me during college, you know how involved I was in every aspect of Carolina athletics. I loved the Sarge...and for the last 2 years, I loved working every waking moment of Spring at Carolina Stadium. Whether it was working up in the press box with some of the best people ever, shooting the center field camera, hanging out in the dugout with the guys, doing features/interviews for the Tanner Show, bugging Kyle in the locker room, or getting into trouble with Jill in the luxury boxes...I got to know and love that team--and everyone involved with them. I hated being here (where no one CARES) and not with them. Or Columbia, for that matter. Definitely not in my room in Connecticut, clutching the jerseys Lipsey let me dig out of the equipment room before I left. hahaha
It also didn't help that Palmer, Alexander, and Dell had been in town for the days leading up to the Championship. Together we watched us rally against OU...and beat CLEMSON twice! watching us win without that little piece of home here with me was hard.
Thanks Andy, Lipsey, Paul, and Wes for putting up with my constant text messages... haha.

What a bittersweet feeling...

Here are some other pictures from the last month. They tell a better story than me. :)

Taking the guys on a tour of work...

The only people in the bar NOT watching the Yankees or Red Sox...

Freaking out in the middle of NYC...that gross girl and guy in the yellow are Clemson fans. HAHA

Cocks on Top of the Rock...

Showing off my Garnet and Black back in Bristol...

Random from the other day...Breesus was in Studio :)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

View From the Prompter

Yup. 9am-12p...3 days a week, for now at least.
It's funny, because I've been on TV a bunch of times already--yet no one notices me! haha! When the anchors do the show opens, closes, and interviews in front of the huge monitor, I'm definitely behind the wall next to it. They're see-through, you just have to look for the computer screen and a person beside it!
Most people don't prefer prompting...but I actually don't mind doing it. For morning SC, I get to the newsroom at 7, drink my coffee, check e-mail/ENPS--basically just sit there and listen to the producer talk about what's going in the show--until it's time to print scripts. I'm pretty much left alone to observe what's going on around me--which is awesome, b/c if you know me, you know I'm not such a chatty cathy at 7am.
Scripts are the trickiest part. I have to sort them--which I explained in a previous post. Its not bad, unless we print late...then it sucks. The stacks of yellow and pink paper are each like 2 1/2 inches thick.
But anyway, once the Josh and Sage (or whoever it may be) have their scripts...I just sit and listen to the producer and scroll along with the show. I get to see how and why the producer makes the decisions he/she does...what goes down when there's breaking news...etc. It's interesting to me. Mostly because it's along the route of what I want to do. Not to mention my job is to follow along/PAY ATTENTION to SportsCenter. Torture I tell you... haaaaa. As IF! :)

Speaking of what I want to do...
I attended a Features Workshop on Tuesday (yes, my "Sunday") which demonstrated different types of lighting used in feature interviews. SO cool. I knew that lighting and natural sound added emotion to a piece, but I had forgotten how intense and dramatic lighting can be!! Shadows and colors in an interview shot can dictate the feeling of your interview. It's insane. We made this conference room we were go from bland white, to black, to a textured blue, to being outside in the sunlight, to a "living room" setting. These camera guys and lighting crews can make almost any room change into whatever the producer wants. I can't wait to get started on stuff like that. Stuff that I can actually invest my time in, day after day, and be proud of.
One day...

On a brighter note (pun intended)...the weather was GORGEOUS for my Monday/Tuesday weekend!!
My roomie Lauren and I got to the beach on Monday. It's nothing like being at home...but it's a beach with sand and water...and luckily on Monday, sun and 75 degree weather.

This cute kid was flying his kite next to us. :)
The beach we found is only about an hour away in Madison, CT. It's called Hammonasset State Park...and it's definitely on the Long Island Sound. Not the Atlantic Ocean. Weird.
There were no waves.
Oh well, I'll take what I can get. Closing my eyes and imagining being in Hilton Head or IOP will be fine for now! :)

I have an exciting next few weeks!!!! Starting Saturday I'm going to have visitors here through the end of June! :) Hobie is finally able to come visit.--Not only to see me, but to chat with his former employers at ESPN and meet with some Sports Directors at the local stations around here. It'd sure be nice to have him near by. :) :) :)
The day after Hobe leaves me...MY BOYS ARE COMING!!!!!!! I miss friends from home SO SO much. Even though it will only be for 4 days, it will be nice to GETTT WETTTT and RAGE with my boys. haha :)
But excited about all of them coming. I'm glad I'll have the chance to show them my awesome "office" and give them a first hand understanding of why I moved 14 hours away to middle of nowhere Connecticut. Although, I know they already know why. haha... It's gonna go by too fast!

At least I get to come home for a game this season! Have your tailgates and kegs ready! :)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Not QUITE Chucktown...but I'll take it.

A couple of insignificant, but cool things happened this week. As I have been prompting a lot, I spend a ton of time sitting in the news room watching games. Of course on Saturday night, I had the West Conference Finals on one TV, the Stanley Cup Finals on another...and wouldn't ya know it, Roy Halladay has a perfect game going into the 7th. Time to tune in to that too! The entire news room (which consists of Talent--11p SC and 11-cl News guys at that point, producers, CPs, News Editors, etc...) was watching and debating and cheering as something happened. It's SO cool to be in a place where I'm not only watching history being made in sports--but sometimes I'm actually MONITORING for it! It was also just neat to be able to watch Roy pitch that perfect game--and see how my producer changed the run down to fit the breaking news. Talk about a learning experience!

As I was watching him finish out the game, I began to wonder--how close have any two perfect games ever been to each other? Dallas Braden JUST threw a perfect game like 2 weeks ago--so I'm thinking this has to be the closest ever. Wrong! The closest perfect games were the first two in 1880, 5 days apart from each other. The closest before this one in the "modern era" was in 1998 and 1999--a year and 3 months a part. Neat, huh? 20 Perfect games in the history of baseball.

Now, am I sad that I don't get to watch Steve Nash and the Suns anymore? You bet.

What a crazy f-ing white dude.

Memorial Day was a BEAUTIFUL day for a game at Yankee Stadium! :) So thankful I have Mondays and Tuesdays off right now so that I could spend the day outside in the sun--and actually get a little bit on my skin! haha
I'm not a Yankees fan at all--but I enjoyed their awesome new park, seeing A-Rod hit a Grand Slam, and hey--if I couldn't be in Charleston with all my best friends, at least I could get out of Bristol with some pretty cool people! :)

Did you know that A-Rod is now 5 for 5 in hitting Grand Slams after the opposing team intentionally walks Mark Teixeira to load the bases? Hilarious!

One more quick cool thing:
As I was waiting to print the scripts for OTL, they set up a flip cam interview for Colin Cowherd right in front of my SportsNation (I don't know when this particular one airs) but I'm definitely in the background of this interview. hahahaha

PS--Happy Anniversary to all my fellow Summer 09 interns!!! Can't believe it's been a YEAR! I miss you all and the interns that started today will be hard pressed to live up to our amazing-ness. ;)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Fun In The News Studio

Nothing terribly new in my life lately...Thankfully, I have a short week this week after working two incredibly long ones (10 days and 8 days in a row!!!) It's funny...I feel like I am CONSUMED by baseball at work...and what do I do on my days off? Go to baseball games. I went with a group of friends to Citi Field yesterday to see Mets vs. Phillies...and will be going to Yankee stadium on Monday for their game vs. the Indians! I love visiting ballparks. :)

It was a gorgeous sunny day even got up to 100 degrees!!!! Not that the temp was gorgeous or anything...just felt a lot more like summer (and home). I need a date with a swimming pool asap.

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!

Since I've been prompting in News a lot (my old stompin' grounds)...I thought I'd share a few randomly fun pictures from around campus and of me and the guys in the Studio... I'm so glad to be back with them for the time being! :)

Mike Hill and Max Bretos...should seriously have a "SportsNation"-esque show together. They are NUTS! I love them! :) I'm pretty sure I'm going to propose a "This is SportsCenter" commercial featuring these two...

So glad to be back with my girl Jacki! :)

Ducis with Helio Castroneves and Ryan Briscoe...

PELE!!! I told him I've been a fan since I was 5... true story!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

One Month Anniversary

Yep, that's right. TODAY marks my first month of employment at the World Wide Leader.
How do I spend it? More prompting. haha!

Tomorrow is actually my first day prompting something other than ESPNews. I'll be in for the 4p NFL Live and the 11p SportsCenter. Hope it's the same routine and set-up...otherwise I'm gonna look like an idiot! :-/ See what I mean about being thrown in the fire??

But enough about prompting...

I flew home to G-Vegas on Friday morning for Kelly and Park's wedding!! It was super fun...and wonderful to spend the weekend with my family and best friends. I miss everyone so much up here!
...As a result of that...I mentioned in my previous post that I worked a 10 day stretch leading up to my 4 day weekend. Lots of prompting with a few highlight shifts thrown in.

OK. So random rant of the day..
Now, I am all for this "Going Green" and being "Eco Friendly" business. I think it's fantastic! Seriously. If your place of work lays out separate waste bins labeled: Compost...Bottles and Cans...Paper...Trash (Yes, ESPN has them in EVERY cafeteria, break room, hallway, newsroom, studio, etc...) I'm pretty sure I can take the extra second to sort my garbage into the right place. 

However, one thing is am NOT all for: Paper Straws.
Yes. It's like drinking out of a mini paper towel tube.
I am aware that I am drinking chocolate milk--Its FREE, ok?? But what I don't like is my PAPER STRAW melting into my mouth as I enjoy my wonderfully free chocolate milk.

Aren't regular straws plastic? Isn't plastic recyclable?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Pink vs. Yellow

I'm on a 10 day work stretch (because I have a 4 day weekend coming up for Kel and Parker's wedding!!!)--So I haven't had much time to blog lately. I'll update with a more extensive post soon! Lots of stuff has been going on!

I started prompting yesterday--which is considered the "boring" shift. You sit in the studio and scroll through the script for all of the anchors' on camera segments. I'm LOVING it right now because I'm prompting News...and that means I get to be in the studio with my friends!!--not to mention one of the only places on campus I actually feel comfortable and confident right now. I miss my news guys...

But of the main things you have to do before you actually prompt is print and sort scripts. 2 copies are printed--one on yellow and one on pink. Yellow goes to the anchor reading, pink goes to the anchor who's not. So basically I have to go through the whole run down and mix and match the corresponding color to the right anchor's pile. There are also sheets without script between each segment I pretty much just have to pull out and throw away. Tedious.

Note to self:
Keep the recycling bin under my seat when pulling out the blank sheets...

Definitely crawled under the desk to collect all of these once I was done.
Oh and learn. HAHA!! :)

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Wookie rhymes with Rookie

Friday night I was assigned my first highlight!  Nationals vs. Marlins
Luckily, on Friday there's no 10p BBTN... and the Lakers game was on, so the 11p SportsCenter went on WAY late. Meaning, I had a good hour and a half buffer to take my time--and not make mistakes. Doing a highlight is not so's just a million little things you have to make sure you do or its a BIG problem. And when your 7pm baseball game ends at 10, and your highlight hits air at 10:10...OR it goes into extra innings...I'd like to prolong NOT finding out how that goes...

So, Nats/Marlins... my storyline: Nats (13-10) ending April with their FIRST winning month since 2005. It ended up playing out well, because Ryan Zimmerman (back from the DL) hit 2 homeruns and Washington won big.
Here's a modified version of my highlight... 

The one they played on BBTN was 1:15...I swear it was less boring. :)
It included the #5 Top Play! yayyy!!! Thanks Nyger Morgan!

Last night, I was given the Twins/Indians game. My hi-supe (highlight supervisor) is a huge Indians fan, so I had to do it justice. :) He ended up helping me out a lot--finding cool things to put in it--but I ended up making the final editorial decisions on what needed to stay in and what needed to be cut. I really liked how it turned out...I wish they put the full highlights online...

The game was pretty boring until the 8th inning... Twins were pretty much dominating the Indians, so I was prepared to have a pretty boring highlight to try to make interesting. But no. The Tribe decides to tie it up 4-4 in the 8th...then absolutely nothing happened in the 9th...SO into extra innings we go.
THANKFULLY weekends are filled with primetime games...and college softball was on (yes softball, haha)...pushing the 9:30 BBTN later.
Since a game like Twins/Indians isn't so high priority, it hit near the end of every again...I had a time buffer.  We did some pretty cool things with my not so eventful game--because it turned out to be pretty exciting!! I put a telestration in highlighting Lou Marson running from 2nd to 3rd...pausing to look backwards...then continuing to head home. He was then thrown out at home. Awesome play by the Twins... but the point of my telestration was to show that had Marson not looked back, he'd probably have made it safely home...and they could have won right then!
We also included and earlier iso of rookie pitcher Alex Burnett walking out to the bullpen wearing a Chewbacca transition into him pitching for the Twins. Pretty funny stuff!
Wookie rhymes with Rookie! :)

Again I wish they put full highlights online...but they don't.
I guess that just gives you incentive to watch Baseball Tonight and SportsCenter even more closely!!! :)

I also wanted to share some pictures from around campus I snapped...

Priority #1 for ESPN right now is the World Cup.  Yes, there is a story high electronic countdown on the side of that building...and yes there is a soccer field in the middle of campus. Football season=football field, too. :)

This is the "Satellite Farm". That huge one right in the front (it looks like a half-pipe) one of only 3 in the world. NASA has one...and I'm pretty sure the other is in Russia or something...

And this one, I took for Hobie.  All this year's sports champions have recliners sitting outside the cafeteria for people to sit down, throw on some glasses, and watch some games on the 3D TV. Yes, we have a couple of 3D TV just chilling on campus.

I'm still loving being back here...but it's hard to have fun working when you know you're under a microscope.--But I am starting to enjoy myself more and more everyday! For now I'm just hoping things start clicking and becoming second nature so that I can get faster...and not have to be thankful for having extra time. My supervisors say it will come with repetition. I know's just hard. We shall see...

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Week 1

Ok, so I'm going to attempt to post at least once a week to keep you up to speed on what's going on in my crazy life. I don't want to blog everyday (unless I REALLY have something to say) because the last thing I want to do is come home after 9+ hours at work...and talk about work. haha :)

One word to sum up my first week at work: OVERWHELMING

I have had more things thrown at me this week to do, learn, set up, pitch, create... holy crap.

First off, let me give you a little overview of my job as a Production Assistant at the world wide leader...
As a new PA, I will be on the highlight circuit for a good while.  Each day, I will be assigned a game (be it baseball, basketball, hockey, etc.) which I will have to research beforehand, log every play, piece of good video, replay, iso, etc. , and help the editor to cut a highlight for.  The highlight will most likely air on the 11p and 1a SportsCenter...and whatever specialty show it belongs on. For baseball that would be Baseball Tonight (BBTN).
The thing about highlights on ESPN is that they need to be memorable. My job is to tell the best story possible for my particular game--which can be blatantly obvious in an exciting game...or terribly hard in a boring game. My challenge is to make my highlight stand out and be noticed--to try something different--and hopefully make an impression on the viewer...and most importantly, my bosses! haha
All of that is my strong suit--the creative part. That's the part I'm looking forward to and can't wait to dive head first into.
I'm also scheduled to start prompting in the studios in a couple of weeks... I'm excited for this because I will be in the News studio--which are all my people!!! Hanging out with my News friends again will be nice. I'm also going to be turning in story ideas (at LEAST one per week) to my CP...possible ideas for segments, features, what have you. My goal is to turn in more than one a week... That said, if you think of anything cool...HOLLER!
What's overwhelming right learning all the new programs and systems I'm not already familiar with. Then, on top of that, trying to be creative. **(Must remind myself to breathe)**
Don't get me wrong...having been an intern is proving to be a HUGE advantage in terms of my getting acclimated.  THANK GOD I KNOW MY WAY AROUND. AHHH!!

But enough venting...
I have had a TON of fun already being back at work! My first night observing in highlights was the Braves/Phillies game on Tuesday night... if you saw, you know that the game went all the way to the 9th inning Phils leading the Braves 3-0. Our highlight was going to hit early on the 10p Kristen (who I was shadowing) and I ran (literally RAN) to the studio to bring the anchors our shot sheet*. As we were walking back to screening, Kristen was telling me that if I can get a 1:40 highlight out of a boring game like that, I could do anything.
So, we walk back in our edit room...and sit down to watch our highlight, assuming our game was over. But no... we are greeted with a new score of 3-3 ... the thanks to Jason Heyward ...our highlight needed to be COMPLETELY changed for the 11p and 1a well as the 12a BBTN. Wow. hahahaha
Thank god for 1-play...

Another cool thing about my job...almost getting run over by Scott Van Pelt numerous times in one night--coming through doors, turning corners, etc. He's huge...but pretty much the nicest guy ever.  He also loves 5 Points, so I know we're gonna be BFF.


Oh yeah...and PS:
Norwood IS a PANTHER!!!!!!!!!!!!

*Shot sheet--a sheet of paper given to the anchor listing each shot/play used in my highlight so they know what to say/talk about. It also tells them about any graphics or special effects I've added that they should be aware of.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

My Room!

I'm FINALLY finished unpacking and am now somewhat satisfied with the way my room is set up! I'm very happy to have all my pictures and gamecock stuff up--it makes me feel a little less antsy to have my friends and family watching over me (as creepy as THAT sounds...) hahaha.

Welcome to my humble abode! 

My little half bath...


The freaking awesome poster I snagged from the stadium...thanks Cory! :)

Lovely shelves :)

The new "king sized" bed. hahahaha

My little entertainment center!

Looking out of my room to the front door/stairs... I'm on the bottom floor. :)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Road Trip!

If any of you from down south plan to come visit me (which you'd BETTER) up here in the rolling green hills of Bristol, CT... here's your route!
Penske (driven by my wonderful Daddy) and I made the 14 hour drive up the east coast and I am finally here!

Hello neighbor to the north!

Waving to the Queen City as I pass by...

Penske just passing through Charlotte...

Welcome to Virginia, Penske...

Virginia is for lovers...and after driving through the mountains, I can see why! Burk...props to VA for a scenic drive. :)

Good morning Baltimore and Camden Yards! :)

What did Della wear??? Har har har... ;)

Gotta love the Jersey Turnpike...


Penske takes on the Tappen Zee Bridge...


Pretty buildings in Waterbury.

My new home...and the home of ESPN! WOO!

The townhouse!!!

I'm still settling into my room...and it's a pictures will be put up later. :)
It's coming along though. I'm a big fan of this place and really lucked out with the set up, location, and proximity to work! (Thanks Maddy!!!)

The past couple days have been a lovely dose of reality for me. I tried to get everything I could done while Dad was still up here to help me. We got as far as car insurance...but didn't make it through the DMV for my license and registration.

Some weird things you should know about Connecticut that I will probably rant about a good bit:

1) Grocery stores stop selling beer at 9pm every night. Convenience stores/Gas stations don't even sell if you get off work at 9 or later and want a 6 pack...sorry, you're SOL.

2) Wine can only be purchased at the liquor store. However, it IS okay for passengers to drink in your car and have open containers.

annnnnd MY real doozie...
3) Your car must pass an emissions test in order to attain a CT drivers license and register your car. Neither of which they issue to new residents on Wednesdays (go figure) and I must have proof of a Connecticut residency in the form of some mail with my name on it. Sorry, but I just moved in Tuesday...

SO Dad and I went to the "certified" emissions testing site up the street...only to find out that the check engine light (which has been on and off for like a year) would keep my car from passing.


After dropping Dad off at the airport it was on to the Honda dealership.
The lady told me it was probably just a minor problem because anything could cause my check engine light to go on and off...but HEY, just pay us 90 bucks to check to see what the problem is!
Suuure, why not. Connecticut won't give me a license and registration with out putting you through an obstacle course apparently, so go ahead.

Thankfully Honda has a lovely car service, and was taken back to my house to wait. Two hours later: "Hi Laura, the mechanic would like to ask if you would be willing to allow him another hour to further diagnose your car. It will be another $90, btw." Sure, why not.

Finally around about 5pm it's concluded that my car as two things wrong with it.
1) Intake Manifold Runner Control Valve ... Parts and Labor $510
2) 3rd Gear Pressure Switch ... $215

Whatever that is...

You do the math.
Not a good start to my "Big Girl" life.

Thankfully I have great parents who aren't as they put it "going to let me starve or go homeless"...and who will advise me on the right decisions to make in situations where I prove to be clueless. i.e... ANYTHING to do with numbers. Hence the Journalism major... haha.
Thanks Mom and Dad. LOVE YOU! :)

Other than that little speed bump, everything else is going well. I've already seen a couple of my friends up here, and I have the weekend to finish unpacking and get myself together--before I start work with "Rookie Camp" (ESPN's Orientation) on Monday. Tours and lots of stuff I've already done and know, but hey, at least I won't be thrown into the fire until Wednesday.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

It's Official, it's been "official" since the beginning of March.
However, I just now decided I should keep a blog about my fun (or sometimes not), exciting, and probably terrifying experiences at the World Wide Leader.
And just life in the "Real World" in general.
I hear it's not as fun as you would think. :)

I start my job at ESPN as a Studio Production Assistant Trainee on April 19. My anxious, over-zealous ass has been applying since I left Bristol last summer. As I'm sure you can imagine, I am SO ready.

In order to get an entry-level position in production at the WWL you must complete 7 months as a Trainee. After said period of time, I will be either kept or sent packing. I suppose only the STRONG survive. <---But the way I look at it: I must be the type of hard worker they are looking for to have gotten to ESPN as an intern in the first place...then hired back on.
But I guess only time will tell.
Probably the last time you'll see me on this side of the lens.... at least for the time being. ;)