Burning Down Memories

June 5th, 2008

It’s been a productive weekend so far: cleaning up, putting away papers, doing laundry, catching up on blogs, Top Chef and cuddling with the puppy. Daisy’s sleeping behind my chair now. I’m trying to avoid rolling over her. Sneaky puppy.

If you have been following me on twitter, then you know I’ve wrapped my 7-Day work week. By Day 5, I had issues keeping my days straight. By Day 7, I felt a little punchy. Still, I’m happy this schedule allowed me to enjoy my Memorial Holiday weekend in Vegas.

Now I’m snyched up with my Saturday thru Wednesday work schedule again. Good times.


I think Sunday morning was one of my crazier days at the station. This was my lead story: A huge fire burning down movie sets at Universal Studios.

It was an intense show – taking live chopper shots from KNBC and CNN. My computer screen kept flashing AP news alerts, NBC live alerts and messages from the assignment desk and my writer. My news director was also calling me inside the control booth.

We scored a couple of live reports from our L.A. affiliate. We also did a phone interview with a local firefighter for his expert perspective on the situation.

Plus – I had to juggle our construction coverage on Interstate 5. That morning, I had live crew by I-5 and a traffic reporter in the studio. Plenty of crazy good live elements and too many commercial breaks.

All the news stories I wrote, edited and stacked for the 3-hour show got juggled into something else. By the 8 AM hour, I was basically re-stacking news blocks during the breaks. I called out an order for stories to the show director…something like: fire first, I-5 next, maybe weather and maybe something on the Puerto Rico Primary.

Coffee wasn’t a good idea after guzzling 6 cups before the show. I stayed with water and deep breathing. I was nervous about keeping track of everybody and communicating my plans with the production crew, anchor, meteorologist and reporters. I was also excited about all the amazing live video out of So Cal. We also took the fire department’s press conference live.

I didn’t sit down for most of the show. I couldn’t feel my toes pinching in my Steve Madden heels.

After the show, I started feeling sad. I started to think about the times when I took that Studio Back Lot Tour with my family and friends. I remember smelling King Kong’s breath as the tram rolled over the faux Brooklyn Bridge. I remember taking for granted the courthouse clock tower from “Back to the Future”. I wanted to show Mark all the cool movie history packed into this amusement park and now I lost that chance.

Too bad.

Still, life goes on. Later that day, MTV held its Movie Awards Show at Universal Studios. We checked out some of the live red carpet show. I noticed plenty of tight shots on the MTV talking heads and starlets. Sure close-ups look good on beautiful people, but I also suspect they didn’t want to chance the camera bumps cutting away to any smoky reminders from the morning.

Nobody killed and Universal Studios can rebuild most of the stuff lost in the fire.

As they say, the show must go on.

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