At the beginning of my internship with Jackson Free Press, I excitedly signed up to learn video and podcasting. There was a reason behind my eagerness: I'm horribly clumsy and inept with technology. Even after taking crash courses in multimedia from my more tech-savvy friends, I have the worst luck with the littlest tasks, like sending story attachments over I-Chat.
The video and podcasting didn't work out for this summer but I still managed to become more efficient with technology.
The following anecdotes chronicle my embarrassing but character-building moments at the JFP with audio recorders, the staff camera and microfilm spools at the Department of Archives.
• I've twice panicked Maggie when I told her I couldn't find my interview files on the voice recorder, one of which was my at least an hour-and-a-half interview with a Freedom Rider, Helen Singleton. Relieved after I found them buried behind other recordings, I spent way too much time trying to figure out how to get them downloaded to my Powerbook than should have been necessary. Instead, I plugged in my headphones to the recorder and transcribed directly.
• For my first photo assignment, I failed to check if the card was inserted in the Canon Rebel before I left the office and was dumbfounded when I tried to take a photo of Paola Conner and saw "CF card missing" blinking on the screen. Several weeks later, I thought I had learned my lesson but hadn't. I took the camera, headed for Clinton, and once there, realized that within the less than 15 minutes I'd checked for the card and run to the bathroom, someone had removed it to download photos. I now check the camera twice before I leave the office.
• About a month ago, I accompanied my fellow interns, Sophie and Ward, to the Department of Archives. I've spent my share of time with microfilms at home, but I struggled with my film reel for some time before a kind assistant took pity upon me and showed me that I needed to flip it around to fit for the specific reel. I think the Media Literacy Project associates picked up the microfilms faster than I the first time they used them at the Eudora Welty Library. -Thanks to Sophie for creating the interns an archives "how-to"-
• Twice in phone interviews, I've accidentally hit a button on the phone with the side of my face, muting the interviewees' voices temporarily֖for about 30 or so seconds. Luckily I quickly found the button to unmute the phone and was able to gracefully transition to my next question without chopping up the interviews too much.
You are not alone, my friend. I still have to get Sage to help me work the Macs in the office.
One of the first times I used my recorder to record a phone interview, I forgot to press the record button and had to call back and ask the questions all over again.
Silly, silly interns!
That is hilarious. I love that you are accidentally pressing buttons with your face... love it.
The best part about you guys is that you play it off so cool and classy all the time. I would never know any of this was happening if you didn't blog about it!
I'm glad so many entertaining learning experiences have happened this summer.