Oct 17

‘There’s a magic in the sound of their name’

Where am I? One last clue from earlier this morning:

OK, one more clue:

Yes! Notre Dame! How did you guess? How do you do it? The exterior photo above is of O’Neill Hall, a building they’ve just recently opened after a $25 million dollar gift that helped change everything about the football stadium. Which is why I’m visiting. I’m taking a tour of their new television facilities. They have a gorgeous new setup and it is being used for classes, athletics and for the church. It is a unique situation Notre Dame has, of course, and it sounds like they are putting a great strategy together.

When you hear about 4K or HDR shoots, it is probably coming through a camera like this.

That’s a pretty nice multiview you have there, Irish. This is one of a handful of control rooms that are are all tied together. They built out a quality facility:

It was a nice day trip. We had breakfast, heard about how they built their gear out, enjoyed a fire alarm, had lunch, took a tour of their new production facilities and then it is time to get back on the road.

Incidentally, I’ve now enjoyed two fire alarms in two college buildings on two college campuses within 24 hours.

Anyway, this is an exterior shot of the famed Notre Dame Stadium:

Apropos of all of that, you can see the highlights from my previous trip to South Bend here and here

It was such a lovely, gray day in South Bend that I took a walk in some of the off-campus touristy areas. And I saw this:

You lose two shoes, well, that’ll happen. You lose one shoe, that’s a story.

Also, I discovered that they have Limebike. No locks or bike mounting system necessary. They charge $1 per ride and, like a good pusher, your first ride free.

On the way back, I stopped off at IKEA. It was their opening day. I went to IKEA during the grand opening.

It wasn’t as bad as Christmas shopping, to be honest. And I managed to pick up all three things I wanted.

Oct 17

And now, storytime

This came in conversation today. It dates back to May of 2012. I wrote about it here. We were in a small town barbecue restaurant and Big Will, the owner, came out from the kitchen to say hello.

My contemporary notes:

Somehow we got on the subject of The Yankee being from Connecticut …

He then reached into the pocket of his overalls and pulled out a .45. She jumped. We laughed. It was a great joke.

There were six people at the table. Five of us were from the South. Only one of us was surprised when he produced his pistol.

She was genuinely afraid, but he was just making a joke, of course. She tried to hide behind me. Someone pointed out she’d need to get more cover than that.

Sometime later he went back out to his truck and brought back his AR-15.

That place opened in 2011. Will said he’d previously been a machinist, but that there had been a car accident in the family. The restaurant, then, was a way to for the family to spend more time together. And, there it was. Will’s wife was working in the store on a slow May day. His daughter was singing for an audience of six. (She was good, too.) It was as small-town as you could get.

It looks like the place closed last year. That’d be a shame. The world is suffering from a shortage of good barbecue.

Sep 17

The problem with amorphous sayings

We have this large classroom with stadium-style seating. And in the back of the room they built in a magic box that connects the room to the television control room. Take a few cameras up there, plug them into the magic box and then you can use the shots to make a show, record a lecture or whatever. We’re going to do that soon, perhaps for the first time. (We’ve only been in the building for a year, after all.)

So today we lugged a few cameras up to the third floor, and we carried a few armfuls of cables up there and plugged them all in to make sure it worked. And it worked, mostly. We now know what works and what we need to get the engineers to fine tune. And fine tune it, they will.

Anyway, in the back of that room next to that magic box there is a window with a nice view:

That’s the Student Building, which was recently renamed the Frances Morgan Swain Student Building. They picked a good name. Swain graduated from IU, married a man who would later become the school’s ninth president and she raised gobs of money for that building. (And even after they left for other roles at other schools, the Swains kept donating money to various IU funds and memorials.) That was originally to be the women’s building, but then a Rockefeller donation came through to make it the Student Building. All of this in a time when Swain was both an advocate for women in higher education and places for them to actually, you know, live.

When the Swains were at IU the population increased from 524 to 1,285 students. Today there are just over 49,000. He passed away in 1927 and she died in 1936. I wonder what they’d think of the place today.

The Yankee and I visited a bookstore today and I saw this:

The saying has always bothered me. I think, mostly, as a pragmatist. If I have the option to shoot for the moon or shoot for the stars, wouldn’t the latter be the more ambitious? Why do you see it as a consolation prize? I mean, sure, I could go visit the barren rock in orbit around us, or I could go see some other fusion-fission space phenomena, and maybe check out any planets moving around it.

But that’s the one part of it. And it occurred to me today what has always been off about the sentiment: “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss you can use its gravity to go deeper into the solar system and we can still chat, until loss of signal, because you’re probably going to run out of battery power before you make it to another star, anyway.”

Now put that on a pencil tote and send the kids off to school with it.

We had a great dinner tonight:

I hope you did, too.

Sep 17

Anyone want to go bowling?

I visited the surplus store this evening. The surplus store is where all of the furniture and old equipment and supplies from the nine Indiana University campuses come to find a new life. If you need binders or filing cabinets or random chairs or old classroom desks or Adidas gear you’ll come away happy every time. It is worth a periodic visit for other things, too, under the You Never Know principle.

Lately, though, most of the stuff I’ve seen worth admiring has been in some mysterious “Not for sale” section behind staff only rope lines.

Tonight, though, I found these:

They must have been on display in some larger athletic department area. The images are pixellated up close, but you’d be impressed by all of the old logos from middle-of-the-road bowl games of postseasons past.

A television show the students produced last night:

And here’s another one:

And there will be two more tomorrow night.

Sep 17

That’s a nice upgrade

Seventh best in the world.

Take that, planet earth.