“We are in the same tent as the clowns and the freaks-that’s show business.”
Edward R. Murrow
Super Bowl Stories – Part Three
The Olympics is the biggest show in the world. The amount of cameras, lights, stages, speakers, microphones, screens and so much more is staggering. Rented from all over the world, of course, with equipment come the operators.
The Super Bowl is the second biggest show in the world. It only pulls equipment from all over the United States. Production companies get hired for specific jobs and are under the umbrella of a bigger company and so on.
We arrived at the Super Bowl three days early. We pulled into the venue and went to scout where we were to put our equipment, set up our gear and simply check out the place.
Naturally, I didn’t push gear around. My job was to push a button. Once.
We came down the ramp and the first thing we saw was a helicopter — drying the field. That was my introduction to the scale, scope and simply money that is part of the Super Bowl. This helicopter was about 30 feet above the field, drying the grass and paint.
My boss had been the Producer for Half-Time at the Super Bowl for the prior oh-so many years. Now she had her own company and of course was hired to do the gig. She knew everybody. She had hired or contracted most of the people in the past and was well liked. She got us all passes with Field Services on the laminate.
Field Services meant that I could go anywhere I wanted except the Media Tent and the players locker room. I had the run of the stadium for two full days!
On game day, I watched the game from the stands for a while. I watched from behind the team benches on both sides. I ate in the tents in the parking lot set up for us (hot dogs, burgers, cokes, chips; nothing fancy). It was amazing.
When it came time for me to do my job, I was on the 50 yard line in front of the winning team’s bench, right on the side line stripe. The stadium was roaring. The players were going nuts. The arena is huge.
I stood for a long time. Watching everything that I could see; fans, players, pyro, big screen images at the end zones and on and on.
It was a fun job!