The banquet was fun. I helped do the video. The senior awards ceremony took a mere three and a half hours. I looked fetching in my cheerleader's uniform. The coach cried. [Because he's retiring, not because of my outfit.] However, I think the pompoms worked. I got a hoody t-shirt presented to me by my friends' son, who is one of the captains, for helping his mom do the team videos during the season. I also got a lovely bouquet of flowers.
Our sports videos have been well received. Two years ago the sophomore team baseball video won an award, a gold statue of some woman in a drape.
Since everybody is used to seeing fuzzy high school videos shot from eight stories up, they really appreciate seeing the up close and personal videos we shoot from the sidelines and with zoom lenses from up in the stands. Some of the shots really do have an NFL feel, but we're shooting mini dv, not film, so while things can sometimes seem similar, slow motion and everything, it's still video, not film.
We could shoot in HD because some of the cameras are pretty spiffy, but one of our favorite cameras isn't that fancy -- although it has a very fast lens and a really good zoom. I use it because it's much lighter. All the cameras are synched to shoot like the older camera at thirty frames per second, not 24. Otherwise the footage won't match. Like anybody reading this could care.
We were limited to only twenty minutes for this year's video at the end of all the awards. The individual game highlights alone take over an hour. So we invited everyone to see the whole show the next night at a pizza party for the team.
To cut things down to twenty minutes for the banquet, I did season highlights in three parts -- Defense, Special Teams and Offense. There is always a reaction to a big hit or hard tackle, but we actually had moments of enthusiastic applause for some of the long runs.
The offense was saved for last. To open that segment, I used four separate clips of my friends' son running with five and six players trying to take him down. He has always been fast, but his strength is phenomenal.
Slow motion only emphasized how much and how far he was dragging people. After the last thirty to forty yard run, where he carried the whole defense an extra ten yards to the one foot line, the place went up for grabs. Plus, he had just been awarded a huge trophy for being honored as the conference player of the year, so I was glad I started out with him.
The team also had its own Devon Hester. In white. He returned three kick offs for touchdowns. Plus another one to the four yard line against a team that just got knocked out of the state semis. But the biggest applause for his efforts was saved for a touchdown run up the middle past everyone on the field. I was able to follow him the whole way from where I was shooting. The hooting and hollering started about midfield and grew to a roar by the time he got into the end zone. Cool.
At the pizza party the next night, we had the captains give out five fuzzy footballs as awards to good players who didn't get the big awards, but who were favorites of the video crew. One went to the backup QB for doing the funniest coach impersonation. Another kid got one for his impersonation of all the captains. Another back up guy could have had a fuzzy football for being able to play ball and lead cheers at the same time, but he also has a mustache and a goatee so he got a fuzzy football for looking like he's 35 years old. Another guy got a fuzzy football for taking out a referee. He made a diving pass and knocked the ref on his ass when he got up. I can't remember who got the last one or what it was for. Not a good sign, since I made up the awards.
Four more years of football are over. I started out shooting basketball, then soccer for my younger daughter's teams back in 1989 and '90. Then I did the boys' basketball team at her school, too. Followed by a year of flying to NJ every weekend in the fall of '97 to shoot another friend's son who took his team to the state championships in football. Plus I went to some of his college games.
Hmm. There's still one more season of baseball or track in the spring.
Then, I promise to get a life.