Get me home!

In Omaha right now. A big thank you to Grandma who called me up to warn me of the blizzard ahead. We're crashing in Omaha for the night to wait out this monster of a storm. Rushed out of Ohio way too fast. BARELY got packed in time to return my keys to the apartment office. I wish I could have met up with Bob to go get lunch, but I had way too much packing to do since Greg and I started our trip a day earlier than I had planned. Got to the airport in Cleveland just in time to pick up Greg and boogied over to Chicago for the night. Spent the entire day in Chicago yesterday, drinking Argo tea and eating a very Euro breakfast at that place with the blue and gold awning on Rush. Yum. Went to the bean again!! I love Chicago. I'll post pictures when I'm home in Cali. I can't wait to get home. I feel like I haven't been to Cali in years. First stop Miyabi and then Philz. I haven't had a decent cup of coffee in like 6 months.


It's snowing! The cold is finally worthwhile.

Here's another big photo post. Some new. Some from October that got lost in the shuffle of things. It's snowed a little bit today. Enough that my car had some snow on it when I went out earlier. It's not very fun to have to wear giant coats on assignment. It's like wearing huge marshmallows and trying to take pictures.

This is a very sad Santa. This guy had been Santa at one of the malls since 1991. That's way back when I was going to go see Santa! Anyways, he got fired in October without any notice and not much of an explanation other then that they were worried about his health. Which didn't make too much sense to him and his family b/c he's been Santa even with broken ribs and cancer. He's in good health now and loves his job. Right now he's writing a book about the things kids tell him. He's had kids tell them they were being abused. I had no idea kids would tell Santa that kind of thing.

Spent the other day at a training session for firefighters. Man firefighters are cute. They let me go upstairs when they were burning a barrel full of straw in the attic. I had no idea rooms filled up with smoke so fast. I got laughed at pretty good when I was coughing and my eyes were burning. But it's like hey, you guys have masks and oxygen, give me a break. It was a lot of fun. Really cool to see how they look for fires and navigate around rooms that are filled with smoke. Plus, it was awesome to get that kind of access. And the camera guy from the TV station that was there got his lens totally fogged up. I had no such problems.

Earth Wind and Fire. Or as I said all day that day.. "Whoooo?" I had heard of these guys but I couldn't name a song if my life depended on it. All day people were saying, ohhh you'll know who they are. I didn't.

We had some awesome winds the other day. Gusts up to 60mph. The temp was in the 60s in the morning and then at about 3 it dropped about 40 degrees. I could barely walk down the street. My cameras were whipping around and all sorts of crap was flying around in the air. The town Xmas tree was uprooted by all the winds. These guys were trying to secure it so it didn't topple over into the street.

A group at YSU walked to Pittsburgh to raise money for the Children's Hospital. This is the start of their walk.

A couple of firefighters were sworn in the other day by the mayor. This is a few of them signing their oaths.

A local artist who is a finalist in a national art competition. Her and I both liked the painting on the floor in the center better then the one on the easel (that was the one that got picked). She had a lot of neat stuff in her studio.

A few of our local teams made it to the State Championships. This is one of the teams who unfortunately lost. Kinda crappy game. Bob and I were both hoping for better action.

Here's a FUN PIX of Bob (r) and Oz in the end-zone waiting around for action.

A pep rally for Mooney who DID win a State Championship.

A prize for a school that collected a ton of canned food.. teachers got their hair cut and a few kids got pies to the face. Check out the hottie getting his hair cut. Who knew teachers could be so cute?

A parent/PTA discussion on what to improve throughout the school district. This is the moderator and her assistant asking questions.

A few more pics from the autism school.

Here's the stuff from October. I can't remember if I ever posted the picture with the bike in it or not. Anyways, this is from a feature hunt that I did at a trailer park north of here. The kids were out playing football and I pulled over to check it out. Took some pictures of them, let them take pictures of each other and had a lot of fun hanging out with them. I brought them some prints later that week which they were totally stoked on. It was a lot of fun.

I like to get group shots of kids sometimes so then when I go back and look at my notes and it says "kid in shirt with thing on it" or whatever it is then I can go back and be like oooh that kid. Plus, it made for a funny picture to give to them.


Barber shop feature. They had a picture package on the wall that Bill shot before I was even born. He totally nailed it. Me, not so much.

And last but not least, a few shots from some features I did on a double-dutch group at an after school program. Nothing cooler than a bunch of girls singing DO IT TO IT and jump-roping. They were so much fun.


Portland, baby, I'm coming home. Sorta.

What can I say.. I'll be in Portland on Wednesday and it's all I can think about. I can't wait to see my family. And I know as soon as I get there I'm going to feel like I'm home. Which is more than I can say for my three months in Ohio. Being back in the Northwest will be an absolutely perfect way to spend my week off. And when I get back it's time to wrap up photo stories and beg my way into football that isn't high school. I've spent the last week working desk every night. And as much fun as it is to see friends' photos on the wire, I'm bored as hell from sitting in that little cubicle and archiving every living file off my Lacie. The sports department does keep me entertained though. And whenever John is working he always comes to visit. But still, it's rough sitting around for 7 hours and only doing actual work for about 2.

Anyways.. Portland. Yes, be there or be square. Fritz, you better be able to come down and say hello!! You'll love the fam, we are very entertaining. Here's a hu-mung-go post for you kids. I had a really good day today even though I had about 4 hours of sleep. So I really wanted to share some photos, even though they aren't all that woohoo. I was happy with the basketball stuff though. I'd only shot bball two maybe three other times and all I could remember was that guy SCREAMING at me and Travis for our strobes going off and ruining his pictures. Guy was crazy.

So yeah, here you go.. enjoy.

Some more locker room photos. These boys were a little tougher to photograph. I think that's because we all felt a little uncomfortable b/c I was standing around in there the entire time they all took a pee before the game. Just a little awkward when high school boys have a girl with a camera pointed at them with their juniors hanging out.

The line at Best Buy for the new Playstation. Super nice folks. One of the guys followed me around with an umbrella the whole time bc it POURING and he didn't want my stuff to get wet. Hooray for dry gear. And hooray for nice folks.

A local high school dance. One of the last they may have at this school bc their new building is almost done being built. Totally reminded me of when Beth and I got a ride in Philly's Ferrari to the dance at Harvest Park. These kids were the best dancers I'd seen. I was like, holy crap way to bust a move.

K-9's for Compassion at a local hospital. Somebody buy me a dog for Xmas. Beagle please.

More football.

A horror moving convention. Bunch of B movie stars there promoting their films. One of the actors asked me out. It was the most creepy experience. I've never laughed and smiled so awkwardly. Hahaha yeah buddy that's not funny please stop talking. And this guy below plays Santa during the holidays... so watch out for Zombie Santa.

A bowling championship. Had I gotten there 3 hours earlier, I would have been allowed past this point. This was literally as far as I could go. Damn sports department not asking more questions about what photogs can do. And damn us in the photo dept for not talking photo assignments into our own hands.

A Steelers/Browns family tailgate party at a church in town. This guy is the father of two of the girls on the right. He was ranting about them being Browns fans. Poor guy, I think he wishes he had a boy.

A canned food drive. A view through one of the boxes. Super media hoopla. They were literally standing around until me and the TV crew guys got there to get some shots of them. And thanks to the channel 27 guy who got me un-lost on my way there. THIS IS THE MOST CONFUSING PLACE EVER. Mahoning County is where maps go to die. It's the the Bermuda freakin triangle here.

Election day. Don't remind me how hard of a time I had getting in to polling places. Poll workers were making up all sorts of rules.

Check it out!!! This is a terrible pic, but it's me at the Republican headquarters in Boardman. Can you see what they are watching?? FOX NEWS. How fitting. And btw, I've never had so many people whisper nasty things about me after saying what paper I'm from. Thanks Vindicator, that's what we get for not covering ANY Republican hoopla before the election. Way to cover both sides. Oh yeah, and I wore all green on election day.. even though I don't always vote green.. but I wasn't really on the side of all the Democratic candidates.

A Cuban couple that came to the US to do some missionary work. The guy on the left is a superintendent of one of the Central District in Cuba. Super nice even though I felt very 20th century ignorant and could only say about 5 Spanish words.

A church camp-ish thing for teenagers.

A food drive at a church. Wasn't allowed to photograph the people picking up food.

Met the author of The Frog Princess!!! Which was really rad bc I totally remember that book.

A few of the kids in the crowd at the author assembly.

A cat that is a companion to a lot of residents at a group home in Youngstown. This was a shot before I was getting them together for a portrait. Again, I hate how reporters here set up ALL the photos. The assignments literally say, I need a PORTRAIT, a mug, a FEATURE, please photograph the warehouse. It's so limiting and frustrating that I get bummed out when I need to photograph something that if I know if I come back with something that's not on the assignment everyone is going to be like, "But where's the...."

Blue Ribbon School. Not your ordinary white board.. a SMART white board. It's actually a computer. But hard to explain. Super cool though.

Junior achievers in a day. Litereally. JA in a Day event at a school in town. The kindergardeners looked really bored.

Some Marines flew a Cobra to one of the elementary schools to pick up some letters the kids wanted to send to Baghdad.

Mooney boys for a football feature. All they cared about what their hair. Super gigglers. It was fun.

The new director at Stambaugh Auditorium.

The guy who invented the Soduko cube. The head business reporter who was here with me had never even heard of Sudoku. I couldn't believe that!!

A Vet that was invited to the White House for a Veteran's Day brunch.

An after school program's Thanksgiving dinner. I'm hanging out with these kids when I get back from Portland. They have a double-dutch team. I'm going to check it out.

Uninteresting.. but met a guy who is the son of a past Ohio State football player who happens to live in SF and asked me out at this Ohio State v Michigan game benefit.

Veteran's Day.

Some skits, songs and dances from a fall get together at an assisted living home.

Wood flowers from a business story. I can't stand junk like this.

Doesn't the guy in the middle look like he could be Nate's cousin?? If you don't know who Nate is, you don't want good television.