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15
Oct 21

Easing into the weekend … with an 11-hour day at the office

My morning started with a meeting. I used the Zoom option, because some people have trouble with masks. My day ended with another meeting. There was no Zoom option. I wish there had been a Zoom option. But not because of the masks.

My day should have ended with that meeting, but I ended up running into a prospective student and her father and talked about the school for a while. And I shot an instructional video and finally left the office at 7 p.m. On Friday. All of this was made possible because that Friday afternoon meeting ran until 6 p.m.

In between those meetings, though, I caught up on a week’s worth of emails and many of the small chores that fill up everyone’s work week. I also went to the Bureau of Motor Vehicles to get a temporary handicapped driver placard. The Yankee can’t drive for a few weeks, doctor’s orders, but parking on every college campus in America is a premium commodity, and she’ll be limited in her walking distances the next few weeks.

So I got the temporary tag. And I updated my car’s registration, as well. And this was the time of the day when the sun broke through the clouds. It was a wonderful moment to be outside doing things.

The other thing I did was to notice that the BMV office is close to Carson’s, the best barbecue in town, so I picked up a sandwich to take back to the office.

It isn’t Bob Sykes, but it will do get the job done in the moment.

I haven’t updated this space with any of the student television this week, so let’s get caught up.

The morning show introduced us to some service dogs and had some other great segments, as well.

The best part is when they’re trying to introduce the dogs, who are trying to be service animals, and one of them immediately hides under the chair. You couldn’t have coaxed that out of that pup any better. Never work with animals, they say. Whoever says that doesn’t appreciate the joy of the spontaneity.

Here is one of IUSTV’s new shows this semester. Bring in a student filmmaker, have them talk about a project they’ve produced. It’s pretty cool.

I say one of their new shows, because there are two new shows this term. Here’s the first episode of a new sports project, almost everyone on it is an underclassman. I’m excited to see where they take this as it grows.

Of course that isn’t enough sports for you, but not to worry. I’ve got more sports for you. Here’s the oldest sports show in our catalog. They produced this one Wednesday night, and it has all the highlights and the looks ahead you’ll need for the weekend of IU sports.

And tomorrow is homecoming around here. (Naturally they have scheduled a top 10 conference foe for homecoming.) The Toss Up has your deep dive ready, right here.

One of the entertainment crews was in the studio this evening, as well. And we should see that episode early next week. I’ll have it here in a timely fashion.

Until then, have a great weekend, and don’t forget we’ll have Catober updates on Saturday and Sunday.


7
Oct 21

Sometimes, somehow, the day goes quickly

Computers arrived today. Sixteen pallets of them. Ninety-six machines. We unloaded the pallets and took the individual computer boxes out of the larger ones. We put them in temporary storage, waiting for the holidays or some other slow time to install them in our building. (Slow time. The next slow time is scheduled to be three weeks spread out over next summer.) Also, we have 80-something more machines due in next week.

Computers are strenuous exercise around the office. We have six computer lab style classrooms and the giant computer lab.

I remember when the now old ones went in as new ones. It’s an experience that lives with you. How the guy in charge of all of those machines — and their software and the many updates — is able to keep it all straight in his head never ceases to amaze me.

Here’s the first sports show that they shot last night. It’s all the highlights fit to highlight.

The second show will be up on Friday or so.

And now I have to record an interview for the podcast. And then I’ll produce it. And I’ll share it with you, and the rest of the world, tomorrow.

(Update: It was a great subject, and an interesting interview. I think you’re going to like it.)


6
Oct 21

We had an important, historic night in the studio

Tonight it was the sports group in the studio. The producers came to me and talked about a special program they were considering and they teased out all the necessary details. They wanted to walk about the health of women’s sports. They had topics, subtopics, timing, guests, all of it figured out. They wanted to break their normal routines and do something they felt was important. They took the initiative and those are the days that make the rest of the days worth it. One of the shows looked like this.

It was timely, topical and pointed conversation about where we are in women’s sports, and why, and where we should be. They were excited to do it, and excited afterward, as they should be. Every episode deserves this much gusto.

Also, since I have mentioned this show in this space in the last week, we can make one more historical note.

Today’s shows will be up later this week. I will, of course, share them here.

For now, here are the shows the news team produced last night. First, HNS:

And after Hoosier News Source we have What’s Up Weekly:

And here’s today’s pocket square. I must warn you, it’s a loud one.

Tomorrow … I have no idea what will be here. But you can at least count on the continued presence of Catober.


4
Oct 21

Ironman Indiana

This weekend we were in beautiful, bucolic Selma, Indiana, a rural community just outside exotic Muncie, which is in Indiana. And so it was that they named the event Ironman Indiana. It’s a bit of a one-off from the Ironman company. A lot of races were shut down last year. A lot of events didn’t get the chance to make money; a lot of outstanding athletes didn’t get to do their thing. So, this year, they decided “Let’s run a half Ironman and a full Ironman on the same day in the middle of a pandemic!”

We drove up Friday evening, because The Yankee was in this race. She did her packet pickup in Muncie, indoors but there was no one around. We went to the hotel(s) — and more on that in a moment. Saturday morning she got up very early and started the race.

Here she is after the 2.4 mile swim, and the conclusion of her 112 mile bike ride. Still a great big smile …

This is just outside the transition area, so she’s slowed down enough to allow us a glimpse as she’s preparing for the run.

Again, a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile run, and then you wrap up a light day’s work with a 26.2 mile run, which she’s starting here.

At some point on the run it becomes a mental thing as much as a physical thing. You’ve been out there for hours. You’ve surpassed your longest workouts. It can be tedious or boring or painful or entertaining. And as this course was a series of out-and-backs, you only saw your personal cheering sections a few times. But at least the weather was nice and mild today, and downright cool after the last of the rain had passed through. Really, it was a bit of everything, and so much of this particular course is in such a delightfully rural area that the only people you would see for long stretches of time are other athletes and the occasional aid station. You spend a lot of time in your head. A lot of time.

And yet, having done half the run, 13.1 miles down and 13.1 to go, she’s still got that big smile.

Later in the evening, having slashed through the water and ground on the pedals and pounded the pavement, the finish line.

This is her third Ironman. First there was Ironman Louisville in 2017. Then there was the North American Championship in Texas in 2019. And now, Ironman Indiana.

She finished, got her medal, took the publicity photos, grabbed a roast beef sandwich and sat on a bench to collect herself with her coach and his wife. And then we carried all of the tools of the Ironman trade to the car. Then she shivered as we drove back to the hotel.

We had two hotels this weekend. The first place had to put some rooms out of order, which we’re guessing, means they overbooked. But they were nice enough to reserve us a room in a much less nice hotel across town.

The sign out front inspires a lot of confidence.

But! We got a room with a king size bed, better than we were expecting in the first hotel. This place was undergoing renovations, however, and smelled funny. It probably always smells funny.

It was a smell that was even weirder through your mask.

So we settled in there Friday. On Saturday, the desk manager says to me “Checkout is at 11.

“No sir, it is not. The other hotel booked us for two nights.”

He had our little note from the other hotel right there on the desk. He was waiting on me.

It says here one night.

“Yes it does,” I said. “And the attendant there assured me this was a typo on a form letter and that our visit with you was for two nights.”

OK, let me call them.

“Yes, please do call them. Call Chris, the manager. Call Chris at home.

He calls, asks for Chris. Chris isn’t there, because it is Saturday on one of the busiest weekends in their town. Why would the manager of a teaching hotel be on hand?

He asks for whoever was close by. He gets put on hold.

Then the desk manager gentleman turns to me and nicely says “I know this isn’t your fault.

I said, “And I know this isn’t your fault. I also know I have two nights with you.”

At which point he hangs up and says “They were taking too long. I’m going to make them pay for it anyway.

Which is where I say, “And when I come back tonight, my stuff is still going to be in the room, and not on the curb, and this key is going to still work, right?”

Which is a question I asked him two different ways, just to be sure we had an understanding. And we did.

You put that out of your head for the day, but after the triathlon it’s a half-hour ride back to the hotel and you’re wondering the whole way: Is our stuff still going to be in the room? Is this key still going to work? It’ll be a whole new shift of people working in the hotel this time of night. What if Robert didn’t pass along this information, and we’re tired and hungry and cold and it’s late and we’re also sweaty? No one wants a scene in their smelly, renovating hotel, in front of people putting “cigerettes” out in the flower pots.

But the key worked, our things were still in the room. The three-time Ironman had a nice soothing shower and a snack and I said, “Since we’re safely in the room I can tell you this story now … ” which she laughed at until she fell asleep.

And on Sunday, we left exotic Muncie, got a quick breakfast and drove back to Bloomington. Sunday was a low key day spent resting and cleaning. Today was a Monday; tomorrow will be a full Tuesday.


1
Oct 21

It is once more Friday, let us away to … the Institute!

Please enjoy social scientists talking about their work, and the opportunity that I have to share a bit of it with you, the casual viewer.

And if that’s not enough video content with which to wind down your week, here’s more quality teevee programming the IUSTV crowd has recently produced that I haven’t yet shared here. This is the late night comedy- variety- experimental- awkward- affirmative- comedy- show. It’s a comedy.

“Always Be Recording. Always.”

Here’s the morning show. It’s their first episode of the season, and they have two brand new co-hosts. Still a good way to start your mid-morning, if you ask me.

This is a brand new show. They’re showing off video works of other students, and talking to the creators. It’s a pretty cool concept!

And that’s how we’ll get to the weekend. Have a lovely one!