Wednesday, June 13, 2007
No doubt about it, my very first fancycam was the size of a fridge - and about as mobile. One didn't operate it so much as molest it. With a rickety middle and sticky wheels, proper cameratology was damn near impossible. Today's studio cameras can be whisked across the room with the whim of a fingertip. Pushing the above puppy into place was like slow-dancing with a drunken robot. For more than a year though, ole Number Two and I waltzed five time a week, sashaying over a studio floor tattooed with a generation of skidmarks - the footprints of a hundred thousand newscasts. Still, I consider it an honor to have worked on one of the longest running morning news shows yet, Carolina Today. From 1959 to 1998, Slim Short and a host of cohorts broadcast a low budget hoke-fest that pioneered many facets of morning news infotainment. I stumbled onto the set in 1989, one more wash-out in a long line of troubled camera handlers. Before I abandoned the insides for the open road, I ate countless free biscuits, knocked back bad coffee with local legends I grew up watching and became clinically addicted to committing television. Too bad my back was never the same.