31 Jan The #BurbLife
The life of a Go To Team ‘burb is not easy. As soon as it hits headquarters in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, it makes a trip to the shop to have half of its seats ripped from the interior and hundreds of pounds of carefully measured, cut, shaped and coated wood put in their place. Then in goes a custom, time-tested rack system designed specifically to effectively carry up to 12 cases of gear, three passengers and, of course, a camera or two. Fully loaded there can be an additional three-quarters to one full ton of weight added to the black truck. It’s enough weight to require tires designed for trucks a weight class up from the stock Suburban. Once it has been uplifted for life on the road to #MakeCoolTV, the keys are handed over to a cameraman and the days of thinking they were going to haul kids to and from soccer practice are long gone.
The Suburban I drive has been used in service since 2007 and is getting very close to tipping over 330,000 miles. That’s 330,000 miles of hauling cases filled with lights, stands, clamps, sliders, lenses, batteries and more. One of my favorite drives in my blacked out #MobileOffice is from Phoenix, Arizona to Las Vegas, Nevada. It’s an easy trip with no traffic or people and it takes you through some of the most beautiful landscape this country has to offer. Joshua trees, Lake Mead and the Hoover Dam are along the route and it seems like there is something new to see each trip. It’s so beautiful sometimes that I can’t help but stop and dig out my A7S, throw a lens on it and spend a half hour shooting photos in one spot only to pull over again two miles later. 305 miles from home until I am cruising the strip, unloading cases onto a cart and heading to the shoot location. Getting to Vegas is only half the fun, though. I’ve made half a dozen trips in the past two and a half months and in that time I have been able to work on some really great projects. A few episodes for A. Smith & Co’s show “Unsung” using two Canon C300’s, and some very interesting episodes for The Discovery Network with my favorite camera, the Sony FS7.
Yes, the Go To Team ‘burbs have a “rough” life, but they are just as reliable as the cameraman driving them.