TO Zoo

I don’t know if I will get to the Yorkdale Mall today, but today the plans are to scout out all the major TV studios, the Casa Loma, the Hockey Hall of Fame, Nathan Phillips Square, the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto Police Museum, Redpath Sugar Museum, Canada Sports Hal of Fame,, and Old Fort York.

Here is a funny story from the Toronto Zoo yesterday, at the Polar Bear exhibit the massive bear came out of the water to take a dump, and there was a school class there watching, and they started ewwing like kids do, and when the bear was finished he turned around fast and roared at the kids and scared the living daylights out of the kids one was so scared that she fell on her but and started crying.

Trip to Toronto 2

Before I get started about what I did yesterday, what is it with Alcohol trucks this week the beer truck yesterday, and now today a vodka truck over turned in Hamilton.

Anyways I went shopping on Bay St. in the morning yesterday, then went back to my hotel room to drop it off. Then I was heading to the zoo, but then I realized I left my Phone in the hotel room so I did not go to the zoo, but since I was all the way out at the Kennedy Station anyways I took the Scarbough RT subway to the end of the line.

Scarborough really reminds me of Saint John in all reality, there are very few sky rise buildings, lots of trees in the middle of town. The not so crisp smell, and about as clean looking. If I moved to Toronto Scarbrough may be one of the first places I consider.

I spent the rest of the afternoon trying to visit every subway station. I gave it a break after returning from Kippling station and went for supper at Subway in the entertainment district.

I went to see the musical Evita last night it was an amazing show. I think I am starting to develop a liking to the performing arts. It was very well acted and very well choreographed. I was sitting pretty much in the dead centre of the second balcony in the Prince of Wales Auditorium. It is almost as nice as the Royal Alexandria but lacks the old historic look. I think I might see some more theatre when I return home to Saint John.

After the show I decided to finish the final leg of visiting every subway station. At 11pm exactly I arrived in the final one Downsview. There is a large mall up there that I might go check out tomorrow called the Yorkdale Mall.

Visit to Toronto

Last night I went down to the entertainment district and since I jumped on the wrong direction subway, and then the wrong subway station by one station, I was 5 minutes too late to see a show. Momma Mia is being preformed at the Royal Alexandria and Evita at the Prince of Wales Theatre. So then I browsed the strip of restaurants to find a place to eat, but went a few blocks away to Hooters instead. Once again the food was terrible but I had an incredibly nice waitress named, Autumn. After that I headed back to the Hotel and stopped at the Odeon Cineplex and was told by the beggar out front that Moolaite was a good movie. Well it wasn’t a was so board that a fell asleep during the second half.

I tuned in this morning to Breakfast Television like I normally do and there were two news items I found interesting first was Molson Beer truck flipped over. Then the Parliament vote to get rid of the government.

Better Policy Needed to Deal with Bus Congestion

I have a concern I’ve noticed happening more often on buses over the past month or so. This effect is predominantly happening on the Hospital / UNB and East / West Routes.

As the buses are approaching capacity there are normally about three to seven seats left in the rear of the bus, however many UNBSJ students will notice only that there are no seats in the front of the bus and will stand half-way between the front and rear doors, causing a backlog of people standing.

I would suggest that the Transit Commission make it policy that all standers must stand in the back of the bus to make it more clear that there are free seats remaining. In addition I would ask that you contact the University to send out an e-mail to students advising them of this.

My Birthday

The last week has been very busy campaigning. But at last it comes to an end. I was planning on having a special dinner today with my Mother but she decided to leave town. Today I am going out for dinner with my aunt. Then heading into town to do Too Close to Call like I normally do every Sunday. Also I’m excited about the election tomorrow, and that I am leaving for Toronto on Wednesday.

Making a TV Show

Note: This article was originally written for Journalism 2023 Journalistic Writing in November 2002.
The 50th Annual Saint John Santa Claus Parade comes around for another year. This was a difficult production for producer Don Ferguson to organize volunteers. In addition, the float list was only available late on Friday afternoon. Three hours before the parade was to begin, we headed down the hill to set up the equipment. On arrival, we realized the taped introduction had the old TVNB logo and Parade 2001 on it. It was determined that we could just cover it up with graphics, but at about the time the parade was about to starting to come down the hill the tape got jammed in the machine and I had about 2 minutes to come up with an alternative. Then the parade went really well until the floats stopped coming down the hill in order of the list and then it was a scramble of; What float is it, type it in, bring it up and take it down and repeat for about forty or so floats.

After a hard day of work, after the family dinner, many families sit down to feed their brains with hours of Television. For a small dedicated group the night of TV starts differently, this group is not home watching TV they are making it. This is the story of the dedicated group of staff and volunteers at Rogers Television in Saint John. These people come together to get together and have a good time to make community television. One of the part-time staff members is often quoted saying, “This is not work it is a hobby.”

A typical shoot will begin with the Producer ironing out the technical details, arranging for sponsorships, and going down the volunteer list trying to assemble a crew together. The task of gathering a crew can sometimes be the most difficult task of all. There are three categories of volunteers. The first group are the extremely dedicated ones. This group will sign-up for just about every thing that they can. This group is relatively small about a half-dozen or so. The next group is the regulars they are usually quite dependable. The regulars usually have a certain focused interest, like bingo or sports. Then there is the third group that are either always extremely busy, lost interest, or do not even remember why they are on the list. This last group is where most of the difficulty in forming a crew comes from after the first two groups are exhausted the producer has to spend hours of trying to get someone from this group interested.

The volunteers all have some interesting stories that occurred during their years. This group comes from all lifestyles, call centre workers, retired tax collectors, former professional TV people, and car dealers. They range in the spectrum from students to retired. In general, they get together to make TV, not in a deadline setting like a commercial TV setting, but one of just to have a good time and make some TV.

After everything is in place the producer and graphics person get started doing research and graphic design as this usually takes up most of the preproduction time. Then there is set up, which could be as simple as turning on and adjusting a studio camera and wiring a few microphones. This can also be a daunting task like a hockey game which involves miles of cables to be haled all through the arena and taped down to avoid tripping setting up and adjusting a half-dozen cameras, half-dozen microphones, set up a replay machine, a fibre feed back to the station, and lighting for the dark areas.

In November is typically a busy month. The month started out with the Kiwanis TV Auction. This is a relatively simple event to begin with, in the beginning of October J-P Quinn the producer begins with organizing the crew and booking a mobile production truck to come down for the shoot. Then comes the cancellations, of the cancellation included the Audio, Graphics, and half the camera operators. On the Tuesday in the morning before the auction, I received a call to see if, I would be available to take over the graphics. Only two of us on the list that could do the advanced graphics required for the auction. I really started my job the day before the show. The auction required an animated introduction, over 300 lower thirds, or graphics on the bottom of the screen, and a credit roll for the end of the show. While I was working on this J-P and several volunteers went down to the Trade and convention center to set up.

Then the long-awaited show day came, it started with setting up the lights, microphones, and phasing or adjusting the colour of the cameras. The show went abnormally flawless. The second major production was the annual Remembrance Day Ceremony this was the worst show I have ever worked on. It started badly by the fact that we could not acquire a mobile for the show resulting in ripping out the rack used for the weekly common council meetings. Since there was, only one graphics computer in Saint John the plan was to send the signal back
to the studio by Fibre-optics and put them on there. The first problem was that the computer crashed ten minutes before the event was to start and I forgot to save the graphics. In addition, the fibre feed did not work so they recorded show on site. When Don Ferguson the producer for the show returned with the tape, we put the graphics, music and taped interviews on the tape. After we finished there was barely enough time for us to rewind the tape. The show look so awful there was almost no sound and the camera cables were not good enough to see anything
but backs of head.

Student Senator Election Speech

Thursday 27 September 2001

Good Morning,

Effective 4pm on Monday the 24th of September, I declared that I was willing to accept the responsibility, and officially placed my name forward as candidate for Student Senator.

I am not saying that I am the best candidate for this position but that I am without doubt that I am the second best choice, and luckily you are not voting for the best person but the best TWO people.

Moreover, it is for this reason that instead of telling you why I am the best candidate I will tell why I am not the worst candidate.

First, I will tell you a little about myself. I am aspiring politician from Saint John, New Brunswick. This is my first year here at St. Thomas and I am in the Journalism program.

Second, you might be asking why is a first year student is going for a position of such importance as Senator instead of going for some thing more basic like first year rep? The Answer is that my philosophy is that if you wish greatness you must start near the top.

Third, I feel that I have the time, dedication and enthusiasm to do a magnificent job as one of YOUR two student senators.

In conclusion, remember on October 1st get out to vote, and while voting, vote Charles E. Frees-Melvin for Student Senator.

Thank You, and have a great day!