Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Crimes of the Camcorder
It's not often The Suits surprise me. This morning, they did. For no sooner had I waltzed into the morning meeting - confident I'd spend my last day before vacation editing this piece on a local cheesecake palace - than I noticed I'd picked up an additional assignment.
"Hey Stew, we want you to do a little thing on shooting better home video. You know, go on camera and share some of your wisdom..."
I turned slowly from assignment editor to producer to news director, then looked up, expecting Ashton Kutcher to drop from the ceiling tiles at any moment and envelope me in one of those insincere bear hugs. When that didn't happen, I looked back at my bosses and replied the way I always do whenever I think they're trying to punk me.
With that I turned and left the conference room, wondering how long this 'little thing' would take. Turns out, it didn't take very long at all. That's because I has very little time to give it. After hammering out my initial project, I slumped at my desk and pounded out a quick script about the fundamentals of good video. Then I read over what I'd written and dumbed the whole thing down to about sixth grade level. Still unhappy with it, but anxious to end the year's longest three day work-week, I threw caution to the wind and hit Print. But instead of finding an anchor to voice my thoughts, I followed the whiff of a holiday cheese-log all the way to Studio 'B'. There I rendezvoused with veteran shooter Jeff Kilduff, who stopped rolling his eyes long enough to shoot my stream of consciousness lesson on how to take the 'suck' out of your home video this Holiday Season. Fifteen minutes later we were done, and whiel I still wasn't sure I wanted to foist my visage on the greater Piedmont Googolplex, I proceeded to the edit bay and ordered take-out. One righteous steak and cheese sandwich later, I emerged from sequesterment, confident that - while Anderson Cooper can rest easy - I'd at least avoided embarrassing myself too much.
So here you go: Crazy Uncle Stew's Video Primer. The tenants I espouse in it are the same ones I break on a daily basis. The cute kids featured within are not mine, but rather that of the aforementioned Mr. Kilduff. I'm told it aired around 5:45. I wouldn't know; I was on the interstate by then, air-drumming on my pick-up's steering wheel and puttting the last workday of 2008 far behind me. I'm traveling East now, to see my Grandmother. Merry Christmas.