When you work on live television broadcasts, things will always go wrong. The worst part about live is that when the wrongness happens, your entire viewing audience will notice. The "best" part is that when you goof off with a studio camera, be prepared to be on the air whether you want to be or not.
This very thing happened to me yesterday on our station's locally produced talk show. Sam (last name withheld) the hand held operator was shooting me (the stage manager) just before the tease that would send us to commercial break. It was all in fun when--oops! The technical director punched the wrong camera (Sam's), putting my mug up on the air for the whole state of Utah to see. I'm sure some head scratching went on as I looked into the camera and nodded approvingly (not to mention what that lower-third banner had to do with me).
Complete disaster was averted as I did nothing embarrassing. When a camera points your way, it's always tempting to do something idiotic that you assume only your coworkers in the control room will see. Nose picking, funny faces, or even the proverbial middle finger can end up in a phantom shot such as this (never from me, of course), but luckily, not this time.
So, does this cut into my inevitable "Fifteen Minutes of Fame" that Andy Warhol said comes everybody's way? I know it will happen, and I hope it will center around some film I've made and not a tragedy or scandal. Do the Karma Gods make note when even the most infinitesimal exposure takes place, despite your every effort to avoid it?
I guess only time will tell. Stay tuned to this blog to see how much "fame-time" gets subtracted in the near future.