Imagine how frustrating it must be.
All that time and effort spent:
Convincing parents that journalism is a productive course of study and that reporting, a viable career.
Managing to secure an internship and, then, a real job. (Ok, it’s a small market, but it’s a start!)
Grabbing that “make it or break it opportunity” in the field.
Stepping through the doors to the big time….
Then that live-on-the-scene source opens mouth with “Uh, uh, uh.”…Nothing.
(Searching for words and continues.)
“Uh…uh.” Totally Blank.
(Dead air time! Warning! Warning!)
Quick thinking reporter poses a question containing the all information needed.
Just say yes! Shake head in agreement.
Point! Something! Moan. Wail.
Use your words!
Shoulders slump. Pulitzer prize dreams vanish.
Please a crumb!
Desperately searching face for tears or strong emotion to point out to viewers.
Defeated reporter returns to anchors at station.
(Images of career in flames. Visions of moving boxes headed for Mom’s spare room)
That’s when it would be gold. Rescue by a simple app.
No one wants to look foolish on camera.
A simple app to prod the memory.
To start that flowing gift of gab that clogs sometimes under stress.
Something to end that deer in the headlight look while the brain is searching, searching, searching…
Draino for words.
A vocabulary smart sympathetic Siri. A Rescue-Me-Word app.
“I felt so” (pick one) “DESPERATE, ANGRY, ELATED.”
Only 3 choices provided.
Large font. Easy to read.
Weather, darkness, strong emotion can hamper reading. (Assuming there are reading skills.)
The app could use pictures? Offer assorted languages?
Win-Win! Reporters get their stories (and maybe just like they want them).
The person on the street wouldn’t have to cringe every time their story was repeated on the air or have to explain themselves to their friends.
Not like this guy and the House of Pies story.
Background: House of Pies is a local favorite. Legendary. People lined up for their holiday pies. A kitchen fire last Thanksgiving. The place re-opened with newly remodeled interior, too. Human interest story.
Nice looking young guy grabbed by reporter who inquired if he liked the new look.
Happy guy smiles. Replies “Yeah, it’s nicer now. It was kinda…uh….uh…uh…rustic before.”
(Flashing lights. Claim a thought-crushing migraine, a sugar overload, or something!)
Like log cabins, outhouses, Buffalo Bill Cody, frontier style?
House of Pies was never “rustic”.
A Rescue-Me-Word app could have saved the day
Pick one: OUTDATED, OLD, WORN
Even the anchors smirked and laughed at the station desk.
How about an app assist for a stammering Mom interviewed about a school room fight?
Background: Oh, your basic teen girls slugging each other and a teacher not jerking them apart. (FYI. School districts here do not allow teachers to physically intervene. Too many lawsuits, teachers getting hurt, and conflicting stories. Many have cams in classrooms, now. Teachers are instructed to hit panic button/call office.)
Mom was unhappy that while teacher did try to separate the girls, more wasn’t done. Video showed her daughter getting shoved and pushed (just like she was doing to the other girl).
Mom to reporter, “Seeing my daughter getting tossed like that, I felt so…uh…uh…uh…
(Anyone could see her brain was desperately searching for a word).
Finally, she blurted out, “It just touched my heart to see that.”
Help, Rescue-Me-Word App!
Normally that “touched my heart” phrase is applied to a heartwarming situation.
It had to be the stress of the moment and the camera glare.
Oh, for a little screen prompt to get the real story out.
Pick one: “FEARFUL, DESPERATE, ANGRY.”
(Of course, seeing the fight might have brought up fond memories of her own fights as a child. Who knows? So in that case, the phrase works. Where is an investigative reporter when you need them?)
Reporters know everyone’s busy these days. They are trying to help. They have deadlines!
Some almost have the story written upon arriving on the scene.
The Rescue-Me-Word App would just make it so much easier for everyone.
Have pity! Support the speechless!
An app whose time has come.
Put words in their mouths!
It takes a village to tell a story.
Always helpful. No thinking required.
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge
Applause and admiration. For what? Climbing up high? No biggie.
Jack of the beanstalk milked that sappy story for all it’s worth.
Simply a matter of being in the right place at the right time with the right people watching.
Like the actress discovered by a Hollywood agent at the soda counter.
Beanstalk scaling? Child’s play. Storybook action.
Person clinging to whiplashing sailboat mast in rough open seas? The stuff of legends.
Among sailors at least.
Reality offers the ultimate thrills and chills. No amusement park ride needed.
Just a tall sailboat mast with a jammed halyard, sail caught, or a man overboard.
When under sail, it’s the only way available to spot someone lost in big waves. (Would this be considered an environmentally friendly search and rescue? Certainly low tech, so it might be approved.)
It looks easy enough.
Just climb/winch up the mast. There’s a harness for goodness sakes!
It’s like a flagpole and a stupid college trick, right?
Not exactly, this one’s moving. Champion bull riders would have trepidation.
Obviously good idea to practice at the dock before attempting in rough seas.
Although points are not deducted for form when underway.
Give it a try. (Can you see this as an “Amazing Race” challenge?)
Impresses the girls and tourists.
Easier reach for medics, too.
There’s bound to be easier ways to climb towards life’s heights.
But all things considered, sailboats aren’t as twisted as beanstalks.
Warm weather. Clear air. Full sails.
No beans about it.
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge
Panic. Just here. Gone.
Child in the yard. Teenager at a concert. Elderly relative driving back home.
What if someone told you – no FORBID you and threatened prosecution – if you looked for them?
The FAA is doing just that.
Texas Equusearch has been told to stop using all means available to find those missing.
We’ve talked about this group before – some bad people stole their van and equipment, remember?
This is a nonprofit that mobilized for searches nation wide.
They swarm in with volunteers, horses, equipment, and proven search experience.
They find people.
Law enforcement request their help. Recently in Illinois.
While searching for a college student, TX EquuSearch was handed a book-sized document by the FAA ordering the group to stop using their drones in their searches or face arrest and prosecution.
TX EquuSearch drones are an “Illegal operation used below 400 feet.” “Commercial use”?
Illinois sheriff got a call from the FAA.
The officer told the founder, Tim Miller, if anyone even took the drone out of the box, he was instructed to arrest them and haul them to jail.
The FAA was contacted. The situation of a missing girl was explained. Permission denied.
FAA is a government agency.
It has to be obeyed.
Despite the fact that realtors, hobbyists, event groups, paparazzi, stalkers, and law enforcement themselves use drones everyday?
Despite that the group has used drones since 2006 and has a stellar record. No complaints about their drones.
Despite the fact that the FAA does not make laws.
Despite the fact that the FAA does not have any enforcement powers given to them?
The FAA has no authority. Period.
The FAA makes regulations – not laws.
The FAA is not an enforcement agency.
Texas Equusearch founder says they are joining a search in Louisiana this week with the drones.
TIm Miller says there will be repercussion, but they are willing to pay the price.
Now is the time, people. Take a stand and make your voices heard.
Next time it could be your child, husband, wife, parent, neighbor’s child or family member.
Do it for the children (Actually appropriate use of that phrase here)
Do it because it’s right.
Do it because enough uncalled bullying by stupid illogical government agencies.(Who should be taking care of bad people – not hamper those doing good.)
Swarm gathering requested: do what you feel comfortable with.
- Spread the word.
- Contact your local media and request coverage. (Links below will give you facts to offer.)
- Email or phone your governor’s office and ask them to intervene
- Email or phone your elected officials in Washington.
- The President and First Lady are in San Antonio/Ft Hood this morning and Houston later for a fund-raiser. If you are there – ask them to intervene. They are parents. They should understand.
- And if in Louisiana, stand with Equusearch against abusive federal agency intervention.
Any thing you do will make a difference.
This FAA action is just as stupid as the previous FAA demand grounding the Whooping Cranes escort.
(Public outcry fixed that one)
Birds gotta fly. Simple as that.
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.
- Ars Technica “FAA grounds humanitarian search and rescue drone flights” (Judge swatted the FAA down already once. Read more with link there.)
- Small Unmanned Aircraft System Industry News for Professionals. “TX EquuSearch commences legal efforts to continue its humanitarian use of civilian drones” (Background and legal information about this fight)
- KPRC/local NBC. “Texas EquuSearch defies government order to stop using drones in searches” (Video. info)
- Wall Street Journal. “FAA Unswayed by Do-good Drones” (The FAA whines “if they let this group use them then they have to let everyone, like Amazon, use them”….and then all the success stories by TX EquuSearch…)
- 2011 CNN. Interview by Mike Brooks of Tim Miller, founder.
- Who is Texas EquuSearch? Official website. How they got started. How they operate What they do.
WATCH THIS VIDEO. Documentary “Civilian Drones: Search and Rescue”. Tim Miller speaks. See drones in action. Stop hurting desperate families. Let them fly!
Do seagulls count? As paparazzi?
They always swarm over when something shows potential. Squawking and shoving if fishy detected.
Vultures and buzzards would, naturally. Always know when something’s struggling or giving up.
And sharks, yes. The original paparazzi.
Circling and going in for the kill.
Tears and pleading won’t deter them.
Watching his boat sailing off without him, Andrew Taylor was probably not echoing Greta Garbo’s “I want to be alone.”
Talk about a time when you want to pick your companions.
Andrew was knocked overboard while making a sail change on the Derry-Londonderry-Doire during the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race leg between China and San Francisco.
Spent about an hour and a half being tossed around in the frigid Pacific Ocean. Wondering.
His harness and safety tether hadn’t been securely clipped to the boat.
(It’s so tempting just dart up there to fix that sail/line. Can hold on with one hand if need to. And of course your balance is great – moving like a cat….)
Luckily he was wearing a life jacket and dry suit. Slim chance better than none.
(Note: even bright colors are hard to spot. So, when that fashion conscious teen/child wants the “pretty” life jacket, remember why it’s getting bought in the first place. And that little dot in the big water…)
The race has procedures for this situation.
All twelve boats immediately started up engines and altered course to search.
He was lucky.
Even once spotted, getting someone back on board isn’t easy.
The ocean keeps moving.
A boat must position itself “below” the person – hoping the current/waves moves the person towards the boat.
Boats rock and roll constantly. With luck the hull’s rail will dip down on the side by the person and he/she can be grabbed.
It doesn’t always work.
Important to keep that person in sight. Difficult with swells and waves.
Bad weather can complicate recoveries even more. They had hail.
Nature plays hardball.
Even when the weather is perfect, the ocean is always silently stalking.
Waiting for that one little slip.
Figures time is on its’ side.
The Clipper Round the World Yacht Race plans to sail up to London’s docks in July.
With all hands on board.
Andrew Taylor is back racing with his crew.
Put that Paparazzi on notice.
Setting sail for a picture-perfect ending.
Phil the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.
- His parents in Newmarket were relieved their son, Andrew, was safe. (Cambridge News)
- “Navy rescues family with sick baby from sailboat.” Boat taking on water. Family taken on board Navy Frigate and headed for San Diego.Little kids get very sick very fast. An 11 yr old boat isn’t that old. Boats break. Have to be able/trained to fix both if wandering.
- “Hit the deck for Laura and Guppy”. Laura Dekker,16, sails her boat around the world. Controversy.
- “Flying Floaties”. Kite-powered catamarans!
- “Mystery flyers skim San Francisco Bay”. Fabulous boats of the last America’s Cup
Not Aladdin on a flying carpet , but some sort of magic may be involved.
Not Tom Sawyer on a makeshift raft, but it is an unconventional adventure.
Not cats on a Rumba, but just as funny.
A boat on a different sail.
(Possibly Wile E Coyote’s latest from Acme?)
Is this the next step up?
It’s a K2 Kitefoiler
Wonder what the seagulls think.
And what hawks are planning.
Talk about challenges.
Kite fighting competitors with kite sails leashed with glass coated Manjha?
Could this mean changes in design formula, procedural rules, not to mention allowable protests, for the America’s Cup?
Will they ask the FAA for a no fly zone during races?
New ideas are always floating out from sailors.
(Hey, it’s not specifically prohibited, so it’s legal.
Yeah, that’s frequently heard by race committees.)
Going faster is a disease.
(Oh, look another boat of the same class/type. Catch them!)
(No, sorry we can’t attend your Friday night event. There’s a race tomorrow and we have to work on the hulls)
Probably not covered under any healthcare plan although it’s a common pre-existing condition of almost all gear heads and sailors.
These sailors are flying with a dream.
And having way too much fun.
Watch them go in these Kiteboat Project videos.
Next post, sailing into a nightmare….
Meanwhile, it’s sunny. Outta here. You should be, too.
Wind is calling.
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.
Called for reinforcements.
It’s now or never.
Not going to take it without a flight.
Loud calls complaining ignored.
Time to flock for defense.
Perhaps even the anticipated disruption was too much. Too stressful.
Was it real cause of that recent death of “undetermined nature”?
Doves not sitting on the fence any longer.
Usually the peaceful ones, now proudly sporting uniform stripes on their shoulders.
Their coos curt with a hard edge.
Duck discarding their fluffy Disney images.
Determined quackers not cracking jokes.
Bills not to be ignored.
And they know intelligent use of the web better than most.
Even the swaggering bird thugs, the grackles, have been enlisted.
Although they are still demanding an investigation into a sudden abrupt disappearance of one of their own.
And are refusing to sit near the hawks.
Tweets in silence mode, they take to the air.
The sea gulls calling range and targets.
No sidewalk shall be left on marked!
No nautical attire left unruffled!
No pocket pooch’s nerves left unjangled!
Take that 2014 South West International Boat Show attendees!
Set sail immediately! Don’t make us come down there!
Marina at your own risk!
Tossing popcorn is futile!
(And we know where your car is.)
In defense of one piece and that’s quite enough,
Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.