Wanna Fly to Denver Tomorrow?

November 08, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

On Monday morning at around 9:30 in the morning I got a phone call from the Broadcast Coordinator for the Georgia Gwinnett College Athletics Department. One of my side gigs is working as the Technical Director of the sports broadcasts at GGC called the Grizzly Digital Network (GDN). GGC streams all the sports home games live on location with Matt, the Broadcast Coordinator, acting as the “Voice of the Grizzlies” calling the play-by-play and volunteer crew of mostly students running the rest of the tasks. In live production you need someone dedicated to the task of deciding what goes out on the broadcast to the viewers: which camera is live, the graphics that are overlaid, the volume of talent, ambient noise, and effects, and making the transition to commercials. That’s part of what I do as Technical Director. Anyway, back to the phone call. I had just gotten up and hadn’t gotten to my coffee yet. Georgia Gwinnett College had recently played its last home game of the semester on the previous Saturday before going to Denver, Colorado for the conference tournament. On Saturday the GDN crew had been told for certain that we would not be traveling to Denver with the teams to broadcast the games as had been a possibility leading up to the tournament. I wasn’t expecting to have any more work to do for the GDN until after the tournament was over, so Matt’s name popping up on my phone wasn’t expected.


I answer the phone and Matt starts with “Hey Mike, do you wanna fly to Denver tomorrow?” I replied with “Yeah, when do we leave?” When someone calls and asks that kind of question, you can’t say “no.” A few quick questions later and the call was over and I had this excited feeling of “did that just happen?” The next 20 hours were a blur of action. I had to make plans with my girlfriend with what’s happening for the rest of the week, cook up a weeks’ worth of meals for her, assemble Ikea furniture for our recently leased house, vote in the election, and of course pack. Packing wouldn’t have been too difficult of a task except for me wanting to bring a decent tripod. I don’t have an expensive carbon fiber travel tripod, so I had to remove the head off my aluminum Manfrotto to fit it into a suitcase. Maybe one day I’ll get something lighter that fits into the side of my backpack.


I was able to get up early and get to my voting precinct at around 6:15 to vote at 7:00 then zip on over to the athletics building to get on the bus at 8:15. Unfortunately because the seating on Southwest was first-come-first-serve, I got stuck in the middle seat on the connecting flight to St. Louis as well as on the way to Denver. I would have liked a window seat to look out of because I find flight so fascinating. Once we landed in Denver, I wondered how or if the elevation would affect me. I have been told it would affect people more in times of heavy exertion, but had no idea what that would mean for simply walking around. I think this triggered a placebo reaction in me, making me feel like I’m more short of breath than I am for no reason other than expecting to need to breathe more for the same amount of oxygen. I’m not sure if that will go away in my short time here in Denver, but it sure is a strange sensation. At any rate, I’m excited to see what Colorado has to offer in food, weather, landscape, and photos. No photos for this entry, but I heard we’ll be heading to Red Rocks Amphitheater tomorrow.  


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