Friends from Hawaii had an extra ticket to the President's Inauguration, so I made plans to brave the crowds and weather. While in a colleague's office, my friend called and said he had two more tickets to offer. My wife was still out in Oregon, so I asked my co-worker if he would like to go, and his wife as well. The offer was accepted and turned into a breakfast invitation at a row house in the NOMA-Gaulladet area of D.C. north of New York Avenue just off of Capitol Street. I parked at Landover Metro Station as I usually do, but was surprised at how few cars were there before me at 7:30 AM. I rendezvoused with my friend and we made the walk to his house and breakfast. By the time the three of us ate, packed up their baby, and walked to the street entrance for where we should
A common spectator pose
go through TSA security, the crowd was huge and we wondered after waiting for 40 minutes and not seeing the queue ahead of us move whether we would ever get to the reserved area west of the Capitol where we were to watch the festivities. Eventually the pack of folks ahead of us made it through the processing area, and we were let in to be processed. We finally got into the general viewing area that our tickets allowed, just in time to see the Vice President take his oath, soon followed by the President. We stood among a lot of people, but past knowledge told us that were were much closer than most who stood out in the cold that day. As the proceedings were broadcast on the giant Jumbotrons, many photographs were snapped at the same time. Rather than glow sticks held high during the playing of an anthem at a rock concert, the images of hands held high hoisting digital cameras above the sea of heads was the image that was fixed in my mind's eye.
During a recent work trip to Australia, I ended up being interviewed for a few television and radio broadcasts. There is a lot of interest in the potential for biofuels for the airline industry, and the sponsors of my trip saw to it that there was press coverage of all the related activities around the Australian International Air Show. The United States Studies Center at the University of Sydney made all of my arrangements, and saw to it I arrived at the right times, or was ready to receive calls when scheduled.
For all of the effort arranging an interview at the Australian Broadcast Corporation's Plant America, the timing was such that my interview did not show up when intended - such it is. It was fund going through the exercise and was good practice for the two radio and one more television interviews. The second TV interview was at the air show, and ended up being a business news report. I heard that my grand kids picked up my voice right away when my son showed them Grandpa on TV. The report can be view by clicking here. The United States Study Centre has been compiling the reports from the different interviews (click here).
ABC interview setting
It was impressive how prepared the reporter was - she rattled through a series of questions for the five of us that were interviewed. Each person was queued in a different place so the background varied for each of us. No make up here - plein air style - unlike back at the ABC Studios the week before. For all the tape time recorded, it is amazing how such edited short sound bites end up telling a pretty good story of what all of this is about. Same as the link above, the view of the interview is found here, and other information is posted about the activities at the United States Study Centre. The radio interviews were done over the phone - like a conversation across the table, just without eye contact. You can listen in on the interviews with Radio 2GB Sunday Business and ABC Radio National Breakfast.