empresspatti (empresspatti) wrote,

Life update with commentary

OK – First thing I did on LJ today was to answer comments that I had already answered.

*Sigh*  I never seem to have both my brain cells firing at the same time lately.

So – things around here.

My Mom is recovering from a terrible case of the flu.  Since 2012 has been The Year of the SUCK, I have been (quietly) frantic.  I kept thinking about how three close friends each lost a parent this summer.

My poor Mom!  In addition to being sick, she had me moping around afraid she’d die.  What a great help to her recovery.

THEN – since she was feeling good enough to shower, dress and sit on the downstairs couch, she got adventurous and walked outside to get the mail.  Returning to the house with the mail – her first outing in almost three weeks – she stumbled and fell.  She’s now on the couch with an ice pack on her neck and shoulder (and me planted on her head) for the next few days.  OY!

Mr. Wonderful and I had a good laugh last night.  We got a call from number only Son.  He was a very happy camper who had a (paying) job to video the Temple University Cheerleaders all day.  Needless to say, he was pretty pleased to follow a herd of pretty girls around with a camera.  Sounds like university life is suiting him fine.    

Mr. W has had a ton o fun at work lately.  CNN is hopping along with election year.  This August/Sept Mr. W’s pet project, new high definition studios & control rooms, came on line.  Cue hysterical rehearsals with stressed producers etc to learn the new setup at the same time that they were rolling out a new show.  Then add in The First Debate.

Everyone who is anyone (and not at the debate site) was in the DC Bureau.  Something like 8-12 VP’s.  Lotta ego and anxiety.  SO at 3:37p on debate day all connectivity in the bureau goes down.  Mr. W. has an office on the 10th floor.  He said he could hear the screaming from the control room eminating from the 8th floor BEFORE his phone lit up.

So he hotfoots it into the control room, where everyone was Losing Their Shit.  Can’t ‘throw’ to the correspondent in Denver.  Lost the ‘Magic Wall’ so Wolf is standing around in front of a plain blue background.  Which I think is an improvement from CNN’s usual squirming background, but I digress.  There is no capacity for graphics, video from any outside location and no email.  PANIC !!!! PANIC.

Since connectivity is Mr. W’s job, everyone was hysterical at him.  He told me he got to have his ultimate fantasy - wading into the control room and shouting "EVERYONE CALM DOWN."   He got right on the phone to Verizon to find out WTF is HAPPENING.  At the same time he had to cover the phone receiver and say to all the VP’s huddling and hollering in his office “CLEAR THE FUCK OUT SO I CAN HEAR.”   Which was another happy fantasy come to life.

Turns out that some random construction site in Ky had backhoed over a major NY-DC-Atlanta cable that is vital to getting the news on the air.

Mr. W and Verizon found a work around and peace was restored.  THEN – 15 minutes after everyone had calmed down and changed their underpants, someone at a construction site in upstate NY backhoed over the work around and it was PANIC !!! PANIC again.

Our Daughter – who also works at CNN, told me “I was astounded.  Everyone was screaming and Dad ran by saying it was the Best Day Ever.  He was laughing!”

Well, what the hell else can you do during a shit storm?

Mr. W hit the phone with Verizon again and figured out that if CNN sent everyone from the NY Bureau home they would have enough bandwidth for the programming coming out of DC.

And so peace was returned to the CNN DC Bureau once more.  Plus the people in NY got to go home until midnight.

THEN – about 12 minutes before the debate started, the CBS debate pool in Denver (Note: ‘pool’ means shared programming. CBS was the technical setup for the debate and everyone used the feed.  It’s the most cost effective way for all the networks, cablecasts & foreign broadcasters to get the programming, rather than everyone doing a tech setup for the same event) went DARK.  NO ONE who was planning to air the debate had signal.  Cue Screaming Again. Only this time it was newsrooms all over the world.

This wasn’t something that Mr. Wonderful could fix.  I’m surprised that the CBS truck operator didn’t implode.

Turns out that a catering truck on site in backed into the most important generator and knocked it offline.  They got everything up and going about 3 minutes before air.  PHEW!! 

If you watched the debate on Tuesday, just know that everyone behind the camera had a really stressful day.

Meanwhile, back at the CNN DC Bureau, Mr. W had saved the day, twice.  They really don’t pay him enough.        

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