Saturday, June 30, 2007

Boom, baby. Boom.

Yippee! Just being outside on Friday made up for all the days spent in the building this week.

We're preparing for massive coverage of the 4th of July firework events our station is sponsoring. Yesterday I was helping out with the site survey of the Rose Bowl.

I'll be running one of the satellite trucks covering the festivities.

As part of the planning, we have to map out where we're going to put our trucks and camera positions and figure out where to find food during the event. Uh, finding food isn't the main concern.

(Did I sound convincing? I don't really believe that, but I thought I should say it anyway.)

Heh-heh, restrooms are also a secondary concern.

Yeah. Right. I crack me up.

At least figuring out the parking was pretty easy. We can fit all three of our vehicles right here and only have 800' of cable to run instead of the over 1000' that was estimated from our originally assigned spot.

I suggested we just park on the field.

They thought I was joking.

Anyway, we'll gather up all the gear on Monday and early Tuesday we'll cable in. Monday won't be too difficult of a day. Tuesday is going to kill us. On the actually day of the event, anyone still alive will be polished off by the wrap up at the end of the night.

We have to pull out all of our equipment and all the cable right after the show.

I have to admit, it seems like a lot of work. For any fussing and complaining I might do, it's still a nice challenge. I'll be part of a crew who are all good at the job we do. We'll laugh a lot and the work won't seem as hard.

I'm going to enjoy the weekend and try to rest up for the coming week. I'm never worried and only sometimes concerned about these big events. No matter how big or small the production, it's still the same job. We put it on TV.

That's what we do and I think we've gotten pretty good at it.

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Launch the chopper, she's on the move

I've got all of three minutes left to post before I begin my shift this morning. I'm typing frantically in the cafeteria at work.

Yeah, I would've had a few extra minutes to write, but I like the corned beef hash and poached eggs they serve.

It wasn't me in the helicopter yesterday, but it could have been. I was out coaching in an Aurora truck and the story involved a photographer taking a spin over the Altadena area.

Both of us have been there and done that as helicopter photographers for our station. So, while it might be a fun little experience if you've never been up in a helicopter, neither of us needed to be the photog to go.

The helicopter was on duty, so we decided it made more sense for him to go. I could always get started on the editing if something happened and the helicopter had go assist somewhere. If I went up and help was needed on the edit system, that might be a little difficult.

This is as far as I got before work. I picked it up again around midnight.

Plus, the freaking helicopter didn't have a door on the passenger side.

It all worked out. We cut a package anddid a live shot, then started work on a straight package for the later shows. Then the day went a little sour. Courtesy of Paris Hilton.

We got sent over to the CNN building on Sunset. YAY! To stand in the sun. YAY! To wait for Paris Hilton to show up. YAY!

I don't really mean, YAY! I have a passive agressive thing going on right now.

Shucks, I can't complain really. Other photogs were standing next to their tripods out in the sun when we got there and they'd been out there a while.

We get asked a lot of the same questions when people find out we're covering Paris Hilton.

"Why are you here?"

It doesn't take a lot of explaining. I'm there because it's not my choice in what story I cover. I cover the story I'm assigned.

Also, they pay me to be there.

I've said it before. If they weren't paying me, I'm pretty sure I wouldn't show up.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Call me Uncle Mike

Anybody remember the show "Wiseguy" from Stephen J. Cannell? Jim Byrnes played a character nicknamed "Lifeguard" on the show. I was a big fan and thought it was cool when Ken Wahl's character "Vinnie Terranova" called in to get help (or messages) from Lifeguard.

Lifeguard lived and worked in a room filled with electronic equipment. His job was to keep tabs on and support undercover federal agents. He was always just a phone call away if an agent out in the field needed help.

I kept thinking about that on Monday night as I talked one of our SAT truck operators through setting up and operating one of our newer trucks.

I'm pretty mellow and slightly unimpressed when it comes to the things I do.

No thanks necessary. Just doing my job, ma'am.

If it wasn't me, someone else probably would have helped the crew get on TV on Monday. We've got a small handful of people who could have stepped up and gotten the job done.

Still, I felt good about it. It could have been someone else, but it was me.

I have to admit that I was a little impressed. It does take some ability to walk someone through operating a satellite truck. At the end of the call I felt like I needed to put ice on my head. My brain was fried, but that's okay. It hasn't been so long that I don't remember when I had to make that call. I certainly appreciated when people helped me and it's good to be in a position to pass along the favor.

Just remember, no running and be careful around the deep end.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Good Will Hunting

It was my day off. I was sitting at home when the phone rang. It was a call from a crew that had a question about the Aurora edit system. They explained to me what they wanted to do. It was a fairly simple thing, but the equipment wasn't set correctly to accomplish what they wanted.

It took less than a minute to walk them through it. I told them which setting to change. They made the change and everything was fine. I'd be surprised if the call lasted three minutes.

The guys who needed the assist are competent and capable and might have figured it out on their own. It's possible. I've gotten multiple calls in one day and it's not unusual for the caller to figure it out for themselves while they're asking the question.

Sometimes I can help, but I'm pretty casual about it.

If I can help, I will. Not everyone has that attitude. In fact, I've had the experience of asking people for help and being turned down. Ouch. It's taken a while, but I've learned who I can count on.

The really strange thing is that I'm still willing to train people and share what I know. If there's something I can do and I can teach it to somebody else, I will. Even when it comes to helping people who haven't been as willing to help me.

I don't know what you would call that, although I'm sure "fool" comes to mind. Look, I'm not trying to be any particular type of person (and I'm really not looking for a pat on the back). It's just how I'm wired.

In the rat race world we live in, my willingness to share knowledge with others might come back to haunt me someday.

I guess I just have to have faith that it won't.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Opera Noir

I've started this post three times already. The first try was at 2:00am and that one really didn't work out. Most days I'm better at juggling a little writing time with everything else going on around me, but on this day it just wasn't happening.

All I'm trying to say is that Dellis and I had a blast at the Opera Noir Juneteenth Celebration.

Maybe I'm feeling a bit scattered because I'm still blown away by the performance.

I knew Anchor Dave Clark's wife was an opera singer, but I'd never gotten a chance to see her on stage.


I'm often quiet, but rarely speechless. It was a wonderful performance and I'm just thankful we got to see it.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Hooh! Aah!

". . .that's the sound of the men, working on the TRAIN ga-ang."

My apologies to Sam Cooke, but that's the tune stuck in my head since I realized the word "train" was pretty much interchangeable with the word "chain" in the song. With all my training duties, it's my new mantra.

It could be worse. I probably could be singing the blues.

I've got a trainee until the end of the week, then I'll have a couple of days working with the engineers (and Marvin) to fine tune the ENG truck's edit system installations.

Not exactly fun work, but it has to be done. I may grumble, but it's still pretty nice to be considered one of the guys capable of handling this particular job.

Another cool thing is to see the guys I work with getting into the new edit system after working with me for a few days. I've gotten a few calls for help, but we're all getting better. It just takes time.

I'm posting from unit #19 and unit #19 is sitting in the parking garage. It's my classroom on wheels for now. I don't know exactly when we'll be out covering the news.

I do know that I'm looking forward to it.

(Hooh! Aah!)

Monday, June 18, 2007

Mmmm, willpower

Had a nice day on Sunday. All the kids checked in early and then left me to my contemplation of life and such or as I like to call it, napping.

It crossed my mind more than once over the weekend that I'm probably lucky to be alive. Not for the mildly dangerous aspects of my chosen profession, but strictly in relation to the diet I'm on.

Sure, I could lose a few pounds, but by "diet" I'm speaking more about my nutritional intake.

Heh-heh, now there's a word that I shouldn't be allowed to use in a sentence. Nutritional? I'm not positive, but I'm pretty sure a bacon wrapped hotdog with grilled peppers and onions doesn't really fall into the nutritional category.

Don't forget the grilled jalapeno.

I tried to resist.

It's been a long time since I took a chance on one of these things. It might have been a year or more. Last Friday night after the Daytime Emmy Awards I just couldn't hold out any longer. I needed to get straight.

The cart was right across the street from my van and I snapped one up.

There was a huge opportunity to avoid it. See, there was this whole half a block walk to find an ATM. I got the cash and zombied my way back to the cart. I tried to pick out one that looked pretty well done. Trust me, you DO NOT want to get one of these things undercooked.

Mmmmmmmm, it was blissful and as far as I can tell, my body suffered no negative reactions. Do you know what that means?

Hey, I think I've developed an immunity.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

A lot can happen at the Daytime Emmy Awards

It's already 10:00am and any ambition I had for hitting the streets early in order to wrap up my Saturday yard work before sundown must have hit the snooze button, rolled over, and slept in.

Just like I did.

But forget that, I don't want to talk about yard stuff when I have something genuinely interesting going on at work. Okay, "genuinely interesting" is a relative term, but it sounds more compelling than "more interesting than all the boring training crap I've been doing for the better part of this year!"

Not that I'm bitter. I love my job, I love my job, I love my job.

Enough with the venting. Hey, so anyway, I went to the Daytime Emmy Awards yesterday-- oops, I mean I covered the Daytime Emmy Awards. Big difference.

If I went to the Daytime Emmy Awards, then I'd be hanging out with celebrities like Vivica A. Fox and Ellen Degeneres (no shots of Ellen because they came out really shakey).

Instead of hanging out, I just got to see the celebs when they came backstage to the press room. Want to know how many times Paris Hilton questions were asked?

I don't know. I stopped counting.

Hey, he's also not pictured, but I saw Bob Barker in the hallway outside of the press room. Rats, no time to snap his picture but let me tell you, he was looking kind of Hugh Hefner"ish" with his Barker's Beauties entourage.

My one moment of actual work during the whole backstage thing came when the edit system trainee I'd been working with this week called. She needed some help getting past a problem. I had to troubleshoot over the phone in a noisey crowded hallway. Lots of entertainment industry women in low cut evening gowns were walking by and. . .Hollywood cleavage. . .making it. . .difficult. . .to concentrate--

With some effort, I was able to get the trainee past the rough spot and she got her reporter on TV with their story. I often tell people that's what we do. For me it's a simple thing that is a humongus part of the job. We put people on TV.

I'm glad I was able to help make it happen for that particular liveshot. It almost didn't happen for the assignment I was actually working on.

Man, for a pretty mellow evening, it started turning sour and the "f-bombs" were flying everywhere. At 10:30pm we couldn't get a good microwave signal from one of our favorite Hollywood Boulevard liveshot locations.

Quick technical point- If we've been able to establish the microwave link from a particular location in the past it's usually a slam dunk to repeat that link in the future. News photographers are sometimes creatures of habit. We like to go live from locations we trust.

We thought that's what we were doing, but weather conditions can affect the quality of a microwave signal. It sure as heck did last night.

We moved three times and finally landed down the boulevard nearly a mile away from the event location.

Other than one Marilyn Monroe subway grating moment, we made slot with no futher difficulties. (Sorry. I'm telling you the updraft wasn't that strong when I checked it.)

Whoa, I better wrap this up and get to the yard. Remind me to tell you later about the bacon wrapped hot dog I had from a street vendor.

Friday, June 15, 2007

I'd hate to imagine

My job isn't always safe and walking through the valley of darkness becomes quite literal for us at times. When I get an assignment, there's no questions asked (well, maybe directions). We're in our vans and out the door at a moment's notice.

It's just an accepted part of our job to go to where the news is happening. It's a simple thing, but where news happens isn't always somewhere safe.

Monday I was sent out to help another crew that was heading to the end of a high speed pursuit. Shots had been fired and I believe there were people hurt.

Yeah, I'm being judgmental, but it wasn't in the best part of Los Angeles. Still, I was struck by the fact that I was walking around with hardly a thought to my own safety.

The neighborhood just was not somewhere under any other circumstances I'd even consider walking through at night.

There were dozens of people standing around watching the police do their job. I snapped a few still shots, but I didn't feel compelled to focus on any of the people from the neighborhood in my photos.

It wouldn't have been worth the problem if someone wasn't inclined to be photographed.

It's a choice not to live in fear, but that doesn't mean I'd ever be so reckless as to intentionally put myself in harms way. I keep my eyes open when I'm out working.

Sure, it probably sounds overly dramatic, but I have pretty active imagination.

I can see myself standing out on the street behind the crime scene tape. The ethnicity of the neighborhood isn't important. No matter where I am, I don't fit in because I'm part of the media and I have to assume that nobody is on my side. There I am and it's not a stretch to believe at least one (at least one) of the people from the neighborhood might like to have a scapegoat. I've been a target of frustration.

Just focus. Go out and cover the story. We do this often enough that it's second nature.

Heck, the truth? A big reason why we don't fear is because there's twenty cops on the scene, but having protection is not the same as having nothing to fear. I said earlier, I have a pretty good imagination.

Can you imagine what might happen to me if the police weren't there?

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

APTRA Academy 2007

I did it last year and the year before that. This past weekend I volunteered all of my Saturday and most of my Sunday to the APTRA Academy Aspiring News Reporter and Anchor Training Camp (uh, let's just call it boot camp).

This is the group I worked with over the weekend. The guy in the middle is Tony Valdez from FOX11. I worked with him both days and also with Phil Shuman (also from FOX11). The group we mentored from left to right are Nicole, Ileana, Karla, Alex, and Sophie. Yes! Full points to me for remembering all the names.

It's a long couple of days, but of course it's also fun. Heck, I'm not that much of a glutton for punishment. I don't know, every now and then (possibly out of a slightly guilty conscience) I just have to go out and volunteer my time to a worthwhile cause.

No, really. Nobody is twisting my arm.

Seriously, there's absolutely no truth to the rumor that camp organizer Hal Eisner has compromising info on me or any of the other mentor volunteers.

Plus, I'm pretty sure the statute of limitations has already run out on anything I can remember doing (or didn't do) during college. I'm not concerned about anything before that as I was mostly a minor and not responsible for my youthful indescretions.

I'm gonna stick with that.

All I know? I'm approached every year in more or less the same way.

"Hey, Bryan. You're gonna make it out to the camp this year."

You know, to some people, that might sound like a question. The way I hear it, I'm not so sure. If you read between the lines, you might even catch the slightly implied threat.

Just like on the "Sopranos" the other night

. . .oh, wait. I already did that joke. It was still cracking me up.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Don't Stop

Often blogs about the workplace are shut down for violation of company policies. Policies that often concern the rights and privacy of your co-workers.

There's really only one way to insure not running into trouble if you blog about where you work.

You absolutely have to respect the privacy of your fellow employees and avoid showing your co-workers under anything less than professional circumstances.

We are here to do a job and I find that if I just focus on the job, then I'm pretty safe.

We bloggers really only run into trouble when we begin to feel like anyone and anything is fair game. What happens behind the closed doors of our workplace should stay behind closed doors.

As long as that simple rule is kept in mind, any blogger should have a long happy life on-line.

It's like the ending of the "Sopranos" last night


After the Playmates

Did you think I'd missed out on all the fun of the Paris Hilton media circus? No, that wasn't the case at all. I just didn't have enough time to really blog about the experience.

So, you know that last Thursday I was hanging out on the red carpet for the AFI whatchamacallit Al Pacino shindig. I should have mentioned that early on, the media wranglers weren't going to let me make my way through the press area to where the main crew was already situated (about thirty feet away). Hey, but I could see them and I wave at them.

The media wranglers I guess have to be careful who gets let in or I suppose media types will just start showing up to hang out. I can't say I'd go out of my way for it, but yeah, that was pretty much all I wanted to do.

Keep in mind also that I was Aurora trainiing that night. My trainee and I were on assignment and out there to help cover the event for our station.

The security told me I had to check in at the media table and get my official "OK". See that sharpie mark on the back of my hand? Yup, that made me "official". It was too funny at the time to feel indignant, but I made a mental note to stop letting people write on me with a sharpie.

I didn't just shoot the Playmates because I have any particular obsession with Playmates. Nope, my trainee and I got pulled from the AFI Pacino thing to cover the Paris Hilton story.

It's been a while since I've seen this type of media coverage. I think I called it a circus earlier. My apologies to the "Ringling Brothers" of the world.

It's kind of weird to realize that I know where Paris Hilton lives and I can get to her house without looking at a map. Let me just say it, "Eww."

I've done this for a while now and even though I'm just doing my job and I know it won't mean much of anything (good or bad) for my career in news, it still just feels kind of scummy.

There's sometimes a blurry line between what we do and what the paparazzi do. It blurs even more when we're all congregated in the same place. I could just be kidding myself, but I believe there are still higher standards of journalistic integrity we meet.

The minimum of which is the truth.


The Paris Hilton story wasn't all that interesting to me on Thursday last week (or ever, ever, ever before that), but by Friday morning I kind of wanted to know how things would turn out.

The possible improper manipulation of the legal system is a great concern and more worthy of the air time in my opionion.

The truth remains that people in large numbers might hate the amount of attention given to Paris Hilton, but still people watch. Serving the public interests sometimes means covering what interests the public (even if that coverage includes celebrities and entertainment).

You might not like her or think she affects your life, but Paris Hilton is a product of the entertainment industry. That particular industry? Really huge part of our local economy.

Sad but true. I'm not happy about it, but I accept it and just go out and do my job. Don't let it frustrate you.


More (or less) Al Pacino

Cleaning house from last week. Here's a few more pictures from the Al Pacino red carpet event last week.

It should be easy to spot George Lopez, Chistina McLarty, more shots of Playmates, Powers Booth, Andy Garcia (or is it Andrew?), Sophia Bush, Mykelti Williamson, the guy who plays "Lloyd" on "Entourage", and Photographer Smokin' Joe Ruiz.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Last of the Speaker Series

Now Dellis and I can say that we made it out to most of the Speaker Series that we bought tickets for this year (3 out of 5). Before Friday we had to say that we had missed most of the lectures. We'd only caught Vicente Fox and Maya Angelou.

It's a small victory for us over "too tired to go out" and "whoops, was that tonight".

Bob Woodward was the replacement for Kurt Vonnegut (for us) in the series track we were in. Pretty fair trade off, we both thought Bob Woodward was a great speaker.

I'm still sorry about Kurt.

It was a great evening. We sat in empty seats in a lower row (or maybe stole somebody's seats). A nice couple from Orange County did the same in the seats next to us.

It kind of made us like the tough kids thumbing our nose at authority in the back of the classroom. Don't tell anyone, but I was also chewing gum while Woodward was speaking.

Robert Redford played Woodward in the movie version of "All the President's Men", but I couldn't find a picture from that movie. That's Redford and Newman from "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid".

That was also a good movie, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't written by Bob Woodward.

We topped off the evening with a late dinner at The Pantry. Mmmm, intellectual discourse and peach cobbler for desert. You can't beat that.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Why? Don't ask me why.

It's gotten to the point where I don't know what to call a "normal" day at work.


Yes, I was still coaching someone on the edit system, but we got assigned to help our red carpet crew at the AFI Al Pacino Lifetime Achievement Award dinner.

The event was taking place at the Kodak Theatre and the celebrity arrivals were happening out front on Hollywood Boulevard.

You've been with me on these things before. Celebrities make their way down a long line of reporters and photographers. There's a barrier in place so we don't accidentally crush the celebrities with the weight of our journalistic inquisition.

That's probably a good thing for Hugh Hefner. He's looking frisky for his age, but I'm thinking he wouldn't hold up well under the weight of even just one photographer.

Not that anyone would need a reason, but that's probably why he surrounds himself with beautiful women. Protection. His "Girls Next Door" body guards seem like they could easily handle a media frenzy.

What? You thought they were just eye candy? Not many people understand that these girls are all highly skilled martial artists who specialize in personal security.

I could be making all this up, but isn't it a little reasonable to believe that Hugh Hefner has fanatical enemies. Is it that much of a stretch to think there are individuals who might want to do him harm.

Come on. Of course these girls are his body guards.

Just imagine, the slightest hint of danger and they form an impenetrable womb around him. A silicone shield if you will to keep him safe.

Yup, that's something to think about.

By the way, if you think this post was just a shoddy attempt to justify a handful of pictures of Playboy Playmates, well I am insulted by your accusation. I am now going to work on my yard. Good day.

Hey, you know who else showed up? Yeah, that guy. What's his name again?

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Not a safe world

Covering a story doesn't always mean I'll be close enough to it to get emotionally involved. After months of not being out in the field, changing gears and being assigned a story that has horrible elements to it didn't weigh as heavily on me as I would have believed.

I'm still working with an Aurora Edit trainee, but we went out on assignment to try and put the training into practice for a second night in a row.

I hate that I'm forgetting some of the little things that used to be second nature for me when I work at night. I hate working even a little cold. I've got to remember to bring a jacket for after the sun goes down.

I like being outside the van if I'm not editing myself. It's interesting to talk to people. It's not always fun (we get opinions of why we suck sometimes), but there's reaction and other thoughts on the story we're covering that can't always be included in what we air in the minute and thirty seconds we have in a package.

We were covering the story of the young boy who was molested in the El Sereno area on Sunday. It's heartbreaking to imagine the the harm done to the child.

As we sat in the van last night, random people from the neighborhood came over and talked to us. Cops, ambulance drivers, mothers and fathers from the neighborhood, they all agreed on one point.

If he gets caught and it's not the cops who find him first, there probably won't be a need for a trial.

I understand the feeling and I nodded a lot in agreement, because I'd have to admit that's my gut level reaction too. On the other hand, as much as I think he deserves to suffer the real world consequences of his actions, I'd rather not see an angry mob decide his fate.

Mobs can make mistakes and it's possible an innocent man could be harmed. Of course, if he was caught red handed, I'd save my sympathy for someone else.

Yeah, if I have to live in the real world, then he does too.

Who's pulling whose strings?

There are causes and people who are more deserving of our attention.

Paris Hilton and Lindsey Lohahn? Not interested. I don't begrudge them their fame or celebrity, but outside of my job they don't affect my life.

This is the entrance to the jail down in Lynwood (It's where Paris is doing her time). We went live from there on Tuesday night and there were three Paris Hilton fans in the parking lot (plus a handful of inmate families, an occasional released inmate and a couple of Sheriff's Deputies).

The three fans were probably the only ones who chose to be there. The rest of us were just doing our jobs or trying to get through the day.

It's not always what we cover that's important, it's what you watch. I'm not trying to insult anyone, but smart folks understand this.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Train, train, train. . .

I might as well have baked another cake for all the news action I got on Monday. Hanging out for a minute down at Unit #19 (from left to right) are Reporter Jennifer Sabih, Photographer Dolores Gillham and Photographer Francisco Alferez. Dolores wasn't actually hanging out. She was the trainee of the day.

She did really well.

It's been at least two months since her last training day with me, but I'm hoping to get her out in the field with a reporter tonight. Am I trying to rush things in the hopes of getting more time out in the field myself?

Gosh, why would you think that?

Monday, June 04, 2007

What happened to the news?

Yes, I have no news. There's probably something going on in the world that I should be paying attention to. Meh, this weekend and all day today I just haven't gotten close enough to the television to turn it on. I'll see what's going on in the world after I get to work.

Melt 3/4 of a stick of butter in a cast iron skillet. Sprinkle 1 and 1/4 cups of brown sugar into the butter. Open a can of sliced pineapples and a jar of maraschino cherries. Arrange the cherries and pineapple slices in the skillet on top of the brown sugar/butter mixture.

That's not good. Now I'm stuck for something interesting to blog about.

I added half a cup of canned mandarin orange slices because I had a taste for orange cake instead of yellow cake. Either one is okay.

If I had taken some interesting shots outside, I might have been able to blog about photography. The only time I took out my camera over the weekend was to document my return to baking after a twenty year hiatus.

Preheat the over to 325 degrees. You don't have to use a cast iron skillet, but if you use another type of cake pan or dish, increase the heat to 350 degrees.

Dellis thinks I've been seeking out comfort food and maybe she's right. It's more likely that I've had a little extra time and just wanted to flex my culinary muscles.

Mix a standard size box of cake mix, yellow or orange or whatever you have a taste for. Just don't hate me for not making this from scratch or using fresh ingredients. Pour it into the skillet over everything that's already in there.

I've got a training assignment today. No telling how much actual news I'm going to get into and it's not very likely that I'll be lucky enough to get another gallery showing.

Bake in the oven for about 45 to 55 minutes. You know how to do the toothpick test? Before you take it out of the oven, poke the cake in the center with a toothpick and pull the toothpick out.

One good thing about the training days? I can carry my still camera with me and try to get a few nice still shots. That doesn't always happen when I'm covering a breaker.

The cake is done when the toothpick comes out clean (no batter). I left this one in for almost an hour. I didn't want to turn up the heat because I was worried that the edges would burn.

Let the cake cool for ten minutes or so.

While you're waiting, check my blog and see if I've done anything worth reading about.

Place a plate (big enough for the cake to sit on) on top of the skillet and flip both over so that the cake now sits on the plate.

News has been good lately, so I'm actually looking forward to the week. I'm gonna pack a lunch, maybe a salad or something low in calories. One good thing about being busy at work. I don't really think about food that much and I'm active enough to work off a few calories.

Yeah, that's a good thing, because I'll need a natural disaster story to work off the calories in this sugary landmine.