Even When I Have Something To Do, I Have Nothing To Do...

It’s been a really long couple of days. I mean really, reeeeally long. Like, bring-your-computer-to-work-even-though-you’re-not-allowed-to-because-you-have-so-many-assignments-to-do-that-your-hectic-schedule-didn’t-give-you-time-for kind of long.

On Thursday night, I left work early to volunteer at the women’s soccer game. It’s required for KIN410 to volunteer at four sporting events throughout the semester, and as most of them are during the weekend (when I’m either at work or volunteering for the field experience program), I had no choice but to forgo a sliver of my next paycheck in the name of a grade. And writing credit, which I don’t need. But I digress.

Tom, the guy in charge, originally told me (the day of the event, actually – love all this advance notice!) that he wanted me there at five. Five? For a game that started at 7? I told him I had work until six, and would get there at around 5:30. When he responded with “that’s fine, see you then!” I knew… I wouldn’t be doing very much.

And guess what? I was right!

Because it was required for a class, there were several other people there. Sam, the girl I’m working with on a project for that class, was there, and it was nice actually having a friend while I wasn’t doing anything. Livens things up a bit, ya know?

We didn’t have anything to do until the team started warming up, when we got to stand behind the goal and chase any missed shots so the players didn’t have to. It was actually kind of fun. I haven’t played soccer in YEARS, and it brought back lots of memories. It was nice using my deteriorating soccer skills again!

The athletic department loves getting kids to work for them during events (remember my track and field debacle from the spring?), and soccer was no different. During the game, we had kids that were the ball boys and girls, and they told us college kids to “help them out.” Aka do nothing, and occasionally nudge them to pay attention to the game. But Sam and I basically just stood around, watched the game, and chatted. Not a bad deal, I guess. It was nice to have SOMETHING to do as a volunteer.

And then we went to the food truck round-up. And then I had a super awkward experience in my bathroom, which you can read about here because I really don’t feel like reliving it. Hooray.

Today, I had my second day of volunteering with the Florida Panthers. It was the first day of practice with the full team, which I was excited for, but it also meant dragging my tired butt out of bed before sunrise again. How do you tell you didn’t get enough sleep? When you wake up to your alarm and have no idea what it means. Yeah, that was me this morning.

I only had time for about five mouthfuls of yogurt before my ride got there, which was rather unfortunate, as the only things I ate between that and 3:00 were a baggie of nuts and a granola bar. Ah, the glamorous life of a journalist.

We got there at around 7:45 for a shift that started at 8. I was assigned to web content this time (!!!!!!!), so I was super pumped to write a story. But two hours later, I was still sitting there aimlessly, watching a group of girls have an ice skating lesson on the rink in front of us. Le sigh.

My assignment was to write a story about the first practice under the new head coach, Kevin Dineen. I started looking up articles and such for background info, but there really wasn’t anything for me to do until I could talk to the guy.

The practice was broken up into halves, one from 10:30 to 11:15-ish, and then from noon to almost 1:00. During the break in between, we had locker room access to get quotes from the players (of course, Dineen wouldn’t be talking to anyone until AFTER the second practice). We just kind of sat around until then, and I didn’t even really need to talk to players, but I went in with some other volunteers and the rest of the media anyway. Why not, right? It ended up being pretty useless for my story, but it was still cool! I was in my first scrum, and recorded an interview with Scott Upshall!

Then I sat around some more. I had most of the background info on the coach written by then, so I had nothing to do. I like framing a story around the quotes I get, so I was getting really antsy.

After the second practice, the GM and coaches were coming out separately to do a press conference/interview session. A girl needed a recorder to use so she could transcribe the interview with the GM, so I gave her the one that had been in my possession all day. So she used it, and was still using it when I needed to go record Dineen’s interview. I had the stupid thing all day, except for when I needed it. Such is life.

I did get another one, though, and was in another scrum with Dineen. Again, super cool, even though it was with lots of other journalists so I didn’t have to ask any questions myself. But I felt like such a member of the media! /nerd.

So, by now it was around 1:15. I’d been sitting around doing more or less nothing since 8 am. I wrote my story, had it read over by Dr. Scott, emailed it to her, and was out of there by 2. I woke up at 6 am for a grand total of about an hour of work out of six hours spent at an iceplex.

BUT I now have a really awesome clip to send with my resume!

Awwww yeahhh. :)

And at least the media room was moderately warm. The soccer game was at night, so it wasn’t grossly hot, either. It looks like I finally ended my streak of volunteering in grossly uncomfortable temperatures! (Except for the first hour or so I was at soccer, and the few minutes I was standing by the ice waiting to get into the locker room…)

Oh, and hockey players are super cute. Just had to get that out there.

…Was I going to say something else? I don’t know. Again, my brain isn’t really functioning all that well. Kiiiiinda drowsy. One day I’ll write a well thought out blog here again, but right now I’m thinking about how much work I still have to do (that I’ve been neglecting for far too long) and how badly I just want to sleep.

I cannot wait to sleep late next Saturday. CANNOT. WAIT.

Chalk It Up To Experience

If I’ve learned anything in the past year or so, it’s the following:

1. It’s good to know people in high places, and;
2. Volunteering is never as much fun as you think it’s going to be.

Remember that time I nearly froze to death trying to hand out pamphlets for the Pinstripe Bowl? And that time I lost my body weight in sweat picking up like three javelins at a track meet? Well, today was right along those lines.

I worked (or “worked”) my first event for the field experience program today – the Florida Panthers Rookie Camp. The shift started at 8 am, and we had to be there a half an hour before that, and the iceplex is about an hour away. Do the math yet? That means leaving at at LEAST 6:30 am. The guy I got a ride with (who I thought was a girl before I met him, by the way – his name is Rayeez. How was I supposed to know?!) came at 6:15 though, just in case. So I had to drag myself out of bed at 5:30 am.

Wanna know the last time I was up that early? When I hiked Masada at sunrise. But when I woke up this morning, it wasn’t sunrise. Not even close. I was thinking wistfully of sunrise. I didn’t want to turn on a light, so I got dressed and ready by the light of the bathroom and my phone. (This was after a very interesting night, too. I’d been woken up at 2:30 am by my loud, obnoxious, drunken neighbors that I HATE WITH A PASSION getting into a shouting match in the hall, and then at like 4 am by my suitemates being loud in the bathroom. Yay.)

…And, as if on cue, the neighbors are being loud again. Have I mentioned how much I hate them? Because I really, REALLY do.

But anyway, my breakfast was a yogurt that I ate on the way to the iceplex. Rayeez was nice, as is Chloe, the other girl he drove. We got there super early (like, before Dr. Scott, the director of the program), so we sat around being cold in the lobby. We had to dress “business professional,” which would’ve been GREAT to know over the summer (like we were supposed to) so I could’ve bought a jacket to wear. I just had a cardigan, which not only toed the not-quite-business-professional line, but didn’t really keep me warm.

People finally started getting there as 8 got closer, and we got our assignments. Another girl and I were assigned to “TV/Video.” I was afraid they’d make us actually do video things – I’m kind of a print girl, and I was totally unprepared. But just as I psyched myself up and was ready to learn some things, I found out that we’d just be helping out the TV crews that would be there, just for general assistance stuff.

Okay. Cool. I can totally live with that.

Dr. Scott was saying how there’d definitely be media there today, because it was the first official day of the rookie camp, and that TV people are very needy, so we’d definitely be doing things. I was all “YES! LET’S DO STUFF!”

By now it’s after 9, and from the makeshift media room behind the rink I see a guy with a TV camera. The shift manager, Sasha, talks to him to show me what I should be doing; she basically just introduced herself and said to find one of us if he needed anything.

So I’m like ‘cool. I got this.’

Well, in the next few hours one other TV guy shows up. ONE.


And he just went straight into the media room, so I didn’t even talk to him. I just loitered awkwardly with some other volunteers for a while. And then I went back into the media room and loitered awkwardly some more, standing up, because I felt like I should be ready to do something should the chance arise.

The chance never did arise, though, and I ended up sitting down next to a girl working on a story. YEAH, THAT’S RIGHT. There were people that got to write stories, while an editor of The Hurricane got to loiter.

Okay, I’m just bitter. I know everyone there was probably perfectly qualified to write good stories, but REALLY? I know Dr. Scott doesn’t know me, but didn’t she read my application? Most of the people working were public relations majors, whereas writing is kind of what I do. And at one point, Sasha was trying to edit the story the girl next to me was writing as it was being written, and she wanted to change a sentence that was perfectly fine. I was like NOOOO, let the former assistant sports editor edit the sports stories, plz!

So, all in all, it was NOT what I expected the day to be. I ended up just hanging around until Reeyaz was done with what he was working on, and then leaving at like 12:30-ish (even though the shift technically ended at 2). But Sasha talked to Dr. Scott about/for me, and hopefully I’ll get to write next Saturday. Today was just a practice day for the team’s rookie prospects, but next week there’ll be the whole Panthers team, plus the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Nashville Predators. That means lots more athletes and lots more cool story opportunities!

I did get something out of the day, though. I haven’t done any actual stories in awhile, being opinion now, and I haven’t done sports in ages either. But being in the media room and around all these athletes and journalists working on stories got me so excited to do it! I’d been kinda thinking that maybe I didn’t miss sports writing that much, but I was itching to get back to it today.

Look at me, finding a silver lining! Since when have I become an optimist? :)

(Since being a pessimist became meaning I’d be depressed all the time. Necessity ftw!)

On a completely unrelated note…

Study abroad. I’M SO FICKLE, it’s ridiculous. I’m now basically set on going to London <3. I really do want to go somewhere new, but the Olympics are going to be there in August. If there’s a snowball’s chance in hell that I could get an internship with LOCOG this spring, I’d be absolutely insane not to jump on that. I’ve already emailed everyone Olympics-related that I know about possibly having a contact over there, and my mom’s found some potential goldmines for me (again! Yaaaay!). The only unfortunate thing is that it’d have to be not for credit, since apparently Queen Mary (my potential future university) doesn’t do internships for credit. So it wouldn’t count towards my major, but DUDE WHO CARES? I’d totally do it for free on my own time anyway!

Basically, this is me asking for favors again. If anyone reading my humble little blog knows anyone that may be able to get me in touch with some Olympics folks in London, please let me know! I would love you forever and ever and ever!

Oh, and I made myself a tumblr. http://you-should-be-writing.tumblr.com/, because when I’m on it I need to be reminding myself that I’m most likely procrastinating and should probably be writing. It’s full of Remus/Tonks, other assorted Harry Potter things, and Castle. I’m doing a blow-by-blow of my camping out experience for the NYC premiere of Deathly Hallows, too, so that’s kinda fun. Yeah. Shameless self-promotion.

I feel like this entry is really garbled and tangent-y (and that’s not even a word), but I woke up at 5:30 this morning, so I’m not quite functioning at 100%.

Bedtime. Zzzzzzzzzzzzz.