Saturday, February 25, 2012

Meathead.. behind the scenes

As an actor, Rob Reiner

first came to national prominence as Michael "Meathead" Stivic, the son-in law of Archie Bunker on the once in a lifetime politically incorrect classic TV show All in the Family. The character's nickname became closely associated with him, even after he had left the role and went on to build a high-profile career as a director. Reiner has stated,

"I could win the Nobel Prize and they'd write 'Meathead wins the Nobel Prize". I took a stab at becoming softball's version of MeatHead
when I was asked to create a Professional Softball Umpire Website . From a site design standpoint I had my CitySoftball I.T. department to properly guide me
CitySoftball Management

and on the pictures side I had talented photographer "Q"
to take great shots. Next I needed a softball environment and that's where my main problems were b/c:
  1. It was February and it was freaking freezing. No games were going on
  2. I needed Actors and had no Money to spend.
I got lucky as experienced softball players/friends Christian, Cano, and Bandanna Man agreed to wake up early, work for food, and help me out.

Now that I had my Motley Crew in place and drove them all to Brooklyn to get down to work.

As a Meathead director

I wanted to created professional umpiring environment so I directed the following situations:

Behind the Scenes : Manager-Officials Pre-Game Meeting Shot

As both a player and umpire I know this a key time in a game where an official establishes his professionalism and control. Good Idea, but it didn't make the final cut b/c we actually got better pictures. Now I understand when actors say "it got left on the cutting room floor".

Behind the Scene : Actual Calls
My photographer, players, and officials took incredible pictures considering the circumstances but one criticism of myself is that I made it a point to not to micro-manage and I was too hands off. For example, these two shots

could have been so much better if I was on top of things. The batter was standing awkwardly in both shots and he's not a lefty. As for the umpire, he was too close in the first shot.  SB Meathead has to be more involved and attentive next time. Oh well, live and learn

Behind the Scenes : New Official Training
I was both an actor and a director

 in these shots. The pictures looked great, but it was tough to explain to everyone what I wanted while actually play the role of a Blue  This was multi-tasking at its best and exhausting, as it really made me appreciate actor-directors.

Behind the Scene : Videos
As part of the site my creative juices created three types of videos
Video 1 - Personal Statements

Video 2 - Case Study on how an umpire should professionally handle an argument These of course led to bloopers like me forgetting to argue
and moving variables 
and rookie director mistakes

 Video 3 - How to properly call an illegal pitch. Good idea, but again didn't make the cut

At the end of the day

we had a good time and delivered a quality product to the client. Meathead couldn't have done it without his friends and being the professional that he is "Q" offered to go back during the season to take live shots. Meathead might get a second chance after all till then I'm hungry, I guess being called Meathead does that to you.

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