Storm Blog, and Other Observations and Things...
Okay...how about a strange, vibrant and bold font that I've never tried to start my first blog in a while...well, I'm not exactly stuck, but I am on winter weather duty in Harrisburg, at the hotel next door to the mighty WITF...
And, it looks like it posted! Yay, Me! On my Facebook page is a series of videos I shot from early this morning to just now. Being from New England, this is really not bad.
Riding out the storm...well, I've been getting some pretty interesting stories from colleagues and we've been swapping 'em as we go.
Anyway, most of PA got slammed. 20-25 inches I think we'll end up with in Harrisburg. The Poconos got the worst of it, two feet and more. Damascus received 30 inches, according to the Wx Channel (and they've been doing a good job); since they dispensed with trying to turn the program into the Today Show, their focus is better.
We've been totally into keeping WITF running and keeping you informed. I was up at 1:30 am (my usual time), and my first video is the walk over, when it was only just starting to hit.
The newsroom any day is busy, but we have flurries of action, no pun intended. When you have only X amount of time to put together audio, stories, interviews and edits, you are foot to the floor.
Some days are better than others. Today, cut down of PPL interview and writeup, snagging a National Weather Service forecaster, interview, getting that cut and done, writing voicers, putting it all together, the recorded Newsline for the affiliates (all of it), and then the sports, and then the newscasts, and making sure it runs...
When the broadcast business rocks, it rocks, baby!
As I say, a few of us got put up at the hotel next door, a nice step up from the cot in the news booth, or the couches over there. But we do have showers, which is nice.
And food...WITF in recent years (and I'm quoting my CEO) has been known to stand for, "Where Is The Food?"
The hotel is pretty well stocked, but there's not that many here. So after flooring it and trudged through the two feet of drifts back here.
These are the kinds of times where you find yourself in retreat mode, but I think something was up, because all I did was sleep. Then I went back over to inform myself of the situation, which has been pretty dodgy.
The video from above was midmorning; everything shut down. PA Turnpike down to 45, which is only done in badass weather, and most trucks were banned from it. That vehicle you see should not have been out, but there you have it.
I've not been home, and I shudder to think what my street looks like! The cats should be fine, I just hope we're not out of power.
Actually doesn't look it. PPL has had only a handful of outages, most up in the Scranton area, where that really was going to be the problem, and so it is.
My friends in New York and New England, I know they're up against it.
Stories...oh, I've heard some good ol' days war stories, about certain big name companies not springing for hotels. I won't name names. WITF was good to us, and I'm staying again here tonight, 'cause I'm first in.
I've heard storm stories. I was not here for the 1993 storm they say was the worst of the winter ones. Anyway, we're in the same situation.
You know things are bad when the Sheetz is closed. End of Story.
Oh, and I come back and two guests were using the outdoor hot tub. Okay. No visuals. Sorry. Not sorry.
So yeah...times like this...I brought my guitar, brought books, brought a DVD to binge watch, we have Internet, and I have iTunes. It could be way worse, I know it. And I have been in it.
If anything...my writing is in my head as I keep bouncing a weird story idea around, but it doesn't make sense. Gonna take months to get that to a working project.
So what is up with all that? My first edit of "Live from the Cafe" is back to the editor; we'll do two more. There's a lot that is going to need to be changed, and fixed, and done stuff to. But it feels good.
The elevator pitch?
"You roll into a one stoplight town in Quebec...there's old, old houses, one convenience store, one Chinese takeout joint, and a funky little cafe...where the coffee is strong, the vibes even stronger and all kinds of mysterious and famous people come to hang out and play music."
Something like that.
The mystery and the fun is gonna be YOU reading this and trying to guess who all these mysterious people are! I want you scratching your heads and wondering, "WHO THE FUCK IS THAT?"
Are they real? Is any of this real? What is real?
I drew on smalltown life growing up in Vermont, where everyone knew everyone, you could go about and not be monitored ('cause if you did something the whole town was gonna know anyway!), people looked out for each other, kept their word, and faced things.
Change, people leaving, new ones arriving, lifestyles, prejudice, fear, and knowing that no matter what, you're gonna be there at the end of the day.
For this odd little town, the heartbeat is the cafe...meet the owners, the workers, the locals, and those people who come by and let you know that life is good, worth living, and a lot of fun.
"What did you dream today?"
Enjoy the link. Just a little idea...I do not know where a lot of this comes from, but it's times like this when you have the time to chill, and think about what it is.
I've been looking over some of my other works, and there's a lot more to do. I have to consider how we will market "Live..." and keep people thinking that I do have much more to offer.
"A Moment in the Sun" turned out to be probably the best thing I'd written...but "Live..." is better. A friend has told me maturity is coming to my work. I hope so, but not too much.
We'll see. I must carry on. Be safe, wherever you are, and if you're not in it, be glad. This is not meant to be liked.
But it's life, and we carry on.