Category Archives: Feature

Sunday River golf and swim

First ever visit to the Sunday River golf course and I was impressed.

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Shot the final round of the Maine Amateur and was glad they gave me a cart.  We, the members of the media, are not allowed to drive ourselves as in years past some balls have been run over.  I can see that happening and just as well.  Not knowing the course, it was a blessing.

 

From there I had to find a feature photo for possible use on the front page as we didn’t have much in the way of stories to illustrate.  I remembered the covered bridge on the Sunday River, was only a mile or so from the access road, so I headed over there.  As I was driving up, a family was packing up their car with tubes and swim gear.  Bummer.  A few other cars in the area, so I ventured down the path, only to find a young couple embracing on a sand bar.  I headed back to my car and about to go look elsewhere.  Just then, another car pulled up and four kids with tubes and bright swim suits came gushing out.  Mom was ok with me taking pix, so I hung around until they walked upstream and floated down.   Image

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Filed under Feature, Scenic

Crash, burn and cooking vegan

On my way to the office for the start of my night shift Monday I no sooner turned on my scanner than a call came in for an additional firetruck to go to the scene  to help contain fuel being spilled and heading to the storm drains.  At L-A Harley.    I had nothing scheduled until  later, so I headed that way.  When I arrived, I will not lie.  I was excited.  A motorcycle was crushed under the wheels of a truck.  What a great photo.  Morbid perhaps.  But for a photojournalist, a moving, well not really, but stunning imagery.  I could tell at once nobody was seriously hurt.  The demeanor of the police and firefighters is a dead, pardon the pun, giveaway.   I shot, talked to firefighters and cops, bystanders, employees and the like.  Shot some more and waited until there was a moment when the drivers were done talking with the police and firefighters.  I approached them with my camera not pointing in their face, and managed to talk to both drivers and got information for a caption.  The driver of the bike said the sun was in his eyes and he thought the truck was turning left, so he went to pass on the right.  He made an assumption and paid the price.  He is lucky to be alive.

While skulking around, waiting for one of them to put a hand on his head or face, or  some other more dramatic moment, I got a call from a fellow Sun Journal employee.  They were having mechanical difficulties with their vehicle and asked if I could come over and help.  I hung out at the scene for a few more minutes.  Documenting a scene like this is akin to covering a baseball game.  You might get your best photo in the first inning, but stay the entire game hoping for a better one.  I had some great shots already, but might have gotten a better one.  I stayed a little longer, but didn’t get what I was looking for.  I was focusing so long on trying to get one of the drivers, preferably Don Morris, the lucky one who was riding the bike, hoping he would  express some emotion that would have put the photo over the top.  But that didn’t happen.  I did see the irony of the Ride Safe logo on the license plate and shot a closeup.

The first comment from a reader online said that photo told the story best.  It is a wicked literal photo.

I helped my colleague with their car issue and headed to the office where I uploaded the photos to the website and headed to CMMC where I shot a video and photos of a class about eating better that will be our Eats for this Sunday’s B section.  I learned about the benefits of a vegan diet and was entertained by a former Soviet bloc cook who has traveled the world and for a month, for free, show anyone interested, how to eat better and have it taste good.

About 10 minutes into it, I got a call from Judy Meyer, managing editor days, and a great boss, talented writer, editor and champion of freedom of the press, telling me there is a possible structure fire, but will call back if it turns out to be bad, so don’t go yet, but can you scoot if needed.  Of course.  Don’t worry about it came the call 5 minutes later.  Five after that, it might be something, can you check it out when you get done.

I did and in the middle of shooting that, a call for smoke coming from Blake Street Towers.  Race there and while getting out of my car there, a call for possible smoke coming from Bates Mill.  I can see smoke for sure coming from Blake Street, so I start shooting.  Some trucks diverted to the mill, but later the caller reporting the Bates Mill fire calls back and says it just the smoke from the towers.   Unlike the TV guys who tend to stay in one place, I walk around the entire building and get a variety of different scenes playing out.

Head back to the office, process the lot, and get ready to punch out a few minutes early.  Call it not getting a lunch break.  An eventful, but short shift for a change.  Just then a friend, knowing I am late guy, calls and  says “nice night for a bike ride, ya think!”

Monday night’s I usually get home when everyone is calling it a night anyway, it could not be any better weather,  I did not get to the gym today, ok.   What a perfect night for a ride through LA.   A minute before midnight I get home and my oldest son Ryan is just going to bed.  I say goodnight and tell him I am taking Allie for a walk.  His eyes open wide, sits up and says.  “I’m coming, I want to spend some time with you dad.”   We have gone on hundreds of walks with the dog, many late at night.  But both of us know they will be coming to an end soon as he is heading off to boot camp at the end of the summer.  I am so proud of him, happy for him, and am confident he will do great things.  But damn if I won’t miss my son.  A great way to end my day.

Of all the images I have from today, the one that will last the longest is the look in Ryan’s eyes when he shot up from his bed with a big smile on his face, wanting nothing more than to spend time with me.

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Filed under Day at work, Feature, Fire, Police video

Oxford Casino Opens

Click this link to check out the wicked cool video I shot at  the Oxford Casino opens

The much anticipated Oxford Casino opened today.  I went to the press conference and tour for the media in the early afternoon.  I was the only person from any media outlet allowed to shoot inside the casino during the VIP opening where they were allowed to gamble prior to the casino’s public opening.  It was a blast.   In this forum, I am able to view my personal opinions, unlike when I am representing the Sun Journal.  So here it is.  Gambling is a vice no doubt.  However, so it booze, cigarettes and food can be too.  I know there are people who have problems with all, both ethically, morally and physically.  I am one of the millions of people who have a beer once in while, don’t smoke, eat a little too much and went to Las Vegas twice.   I but a lottery ticket every once in a while, but know my odds of winning are crazy.  It’s fun to dream about what I would do with the winnings.  It’s worth the buck or two.   With this casino 20 minutes away, I may now choose to go have fun just watching people gamble.  I might drop 10 bucks, but it is no different than spending that much at the movies, going to a bar or whatever.  It is a choice.

The casino brings jobs and entertainment to our community and state.  It might just attract more businesses and tax paying citizens if not just rich skiers on their way through, or old leaf peepers in the fall.

That’s my opinion and that’s all it is.  An opinion.  I know many oppose the casino, but that’s their opinion.  The public voted on this issue and it gained approval.

Many who oppose it say we were mislead with the promises of a much bigger complex and this is only a fraction of what we got.   Rome was not built in a day.  This is the first of many phases of the casino project and I hope goes well.   They say it is a problem that a company from Vegas is running it.  My opinion.  Do you want a bunch of well intentioned, but not well versed local businessmen running it who have no experience in running a casino.  Or do you want a company who knows the ropes giving it a chance to survive.  Sure a lot of the money goes out of state, but what about the 90percent of the employees that now have a job, pay taxes and spend money locally.

The venture is a gamble, but in my video, the major investor Bob Bahre was right on the money when he came forward and admitted that he invested his money here to make a profit, who wouldn’t, but he makes his home (one of many) here and wanted to help the economy.  Hell, he could have invested that money elsewhere and made a quicker and possibly bigger return, but he chose to do it here.  Kudos.  Good luck to everyone, from the table boss to the average Joe walking through the doors.  While most who enter will loose their money, everyone wins in the long run.   The gambler may not win money, but they have a good time.   The out of state casino operators and investors make money.  The state and county wins because of the taxes they take in.  The casino workers make a wage, the business around get extra traffic and sales and on and on.  I have no doubt that there will be many who come because they are addicted to gambling and will neglect their children, loose their homes and many more scenarios attached to the vice.  Same with booze and other legal vices.  In moderation and with scrutiny, gambling is just one more form of entertainment that can be enjoyed by millions and have a positive influence on our economy.  Enough said!

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Filed under Day at work, Feature