The Wide Angle: Life moves pretty fast, don’t hit me

Published 9:39 am Sunday, August 27, 2017

Words really can’t accurately convey how ready I am for the high school sports season.

For a lot of the summer I’ve been cooped up in the Herald for a variety of reasons, staring a computer. Yes there sports during the summer, but the high school sports season is just the best.

Long days? Yes. Longer nights? Agreed.

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But it’s so worth it just to be outside watching some of the purest sports action you’ll find. Kids playing for the game, not the paycheck.

So as I gear up for another rigorous stretch of patrolling the sidelines, I give you an accounting of some of those things I want to see and accomplish this year.

1. Not get hit — by anything

This is a big one because I’m kind of wimp.

Over the years I’ve been hit by just about everything: softballs, baseballs, footballs, football players, soccer balls, volleyballs — in fact I’ve been hit by so many softballs that I’m pretty sure there was a running tally among area players to see who could hit the most.

I fully understand that getting hit by things while covering athletics is a frequent task, made easier by all those years as a youth where I dominated dodgeball games with my catlike reflexes and miniature frame.

Except I’m getting older and really, a lot of the times over the last few years I just take one for the team [unless it’s a football player then I pirouette my way out of danger like a dancer with one leg] and then brag later how I stayed in there to get the shot, making myself some form of newspaper martyr.

Not going to lie, I just wanted an excuse to run this.
Illustration by Eric Johnson/

2. Enjoy every single moment

Admittedly, this is harder than it would appear simply because taskmaster Hulne often times has me running all over kingdom come, sometimes hitting three or four events in a day.

It’s part of the job, but by the time I get to the last event it sometimes dogs on me the running I was doing previously. But still, I have to remind myself to enjoy every stop: talk to people, enjoy the action, those types of things.

3. Make even better use of Twitter

I’m serious about this.

Every newspaper person worth their salt these days has got to use Twitter more and this goes especially for sportswriters and photographers.

I’m going to be haunting you, dear followers. No, not that way. Stop being weird.

I mean that I will be checking often and interacting with my followers even more — hopefully. Sometimes it’s hard for me to do both — taking pictures and tweeting because I’m paranoid I will miss something or break rule No. 1.

I’ll try to take more pictures at events and this may even include a few more selfies, though think wisely about this. I won’t do your reputation any favors, but if you see me walking by and want a selfie with me then we’ll take that selfie.

I’m justing saying, be ready, because I’m a weird-looking duck.

Also, this is a shameless plug to get more followers. As I write this, I’m sitting at 1,635 and that puts me squarely behind Rocky. That can’t be allowed.

4. More challenges

Rocky and I are still working to get more challenges and believe it not people — we’ll come to the small towns.

We’ve done two of these challenges so far involving Austin softball and football and they have been an absolute blast.

Working with these kids is an honest to goodness treat and we want to feature more of what they do so coaches and players let us come into a practice and see how we fare.

So there, four things I want to do better and more often in 2017-2018. Rocky and I are in the community for you so make use of us. Have a story idea? Rocky will be there to tell it and I’ll be there to make you look good.

This last part is for the athletes. For the love of everything have fun. You’re going to lose you’re going to win, you’re going to run over a photographer, but make sure you are enjoying every single minute of it.

As a favorite truant once said: “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”