Editors Note:


EDITOR'S NOTE: Fresh off a three year managerial stint, your friendly neighborhood lenslinger is back on the street and under heavy deadline. As the numbing effects of his self-imposed containment wear off, vexing reflections and pithy epistles are sure to follow...

Friday, October 14, 2005

Friday Night Smite

Thanks to Weaver for alerting me to a video clip now playing on b-roll.net involving a cameraman, a football player and some unfortunate inertia. Sliced and diced in wonderous slow-mo, the footage is worthy of Zapruder-like inspection. Other than reminding me of why I never liked shooting football, the clip also brings back the memory of fall Friday nights just like this one...

Years ago a friend of mine was shooting high school football with the help of an intern. It was back in the days of 3/4, when your average videotape record-deck was quite literally an oversized VCR in a bag, attached to the camera by a thick bulky cable.

To keep himself fresh and unfatigued, my friend enlisted the intern's help. He placed the straps of the heavy deck around the young man's shoulders and instructed him to stay behind him. Now my friend, whom we won't call Scott, could shoot the game in relative ease - focusing on the action inside the 'finder, while his collegiate packmule brought up the rear and the backbreaking weight that went with it.

It all went well for awhile. The intern fed just enough cable between himself and not-Scott to avoid tripping either of them up. When one moved, so did the other. But somewhere in the closing minutes of the third quarter, communication broke down. Still trying to master the spinning brown bullet zoom, not-Scott lost himself in the lens, never seeing the heavily padded gargantuan speeding toward him at an uncontrollable speed...

The intern however, did and didn't hesitate to take action. Tapping into his inner flightpath, he instinctively jogged backwards a few too many steps, stretching the cable tight between he and my still oblivious buddy. Scott (or not) was still working the focal ring when the camera suddenly stood up on his shoulder and tried to crawl down his back. The viewfinder rubbed a nasty divot in his eyesocket as it scrubbed up his head, clearing his field of vision just in time to catch sight of the numbered shoulder pad that was about to unmake his day.

The resulting video was a hoot - a tumbling kaleidoscope of sky, turf and lights. A second view from atop the bleachers shows the irrefutable evidence of the intern's hasty retreat. Not-Scott escaped with only a black eye and a few bruised ribs. We called him 'Crash' for awhile but the mickname never stuck. As for the intern, he skulked back to campus, never again to be seen leaving a man behind on the field of battle.

Since then, I've always kept both eyes open. I'd suggest you do the same...

1 comment:

Chris Morton said...

Wew.. I am glad I am Swing... and I got the morning lives with Danny. I'd probably be in Comma if that happened to me. Thanks for putting another image of news coverage gone wrong in my head. I hate flashbax, now I'm gonna have them.. gee thanks Weaver.