The Master List

“Collect and organize all my online logins and passwords.”

One of my goals is to collect and record all of my online identities and passwords in one location. I’ve had a few people ask my why I would want all of that information in one place? The answer is a morbid one. I remember reading a few articles about a year ago about what happens to our “online presence” after we die. The article dealt with a few specifics like what family members could do with your Facebook account, etc.

The one thing that stood out was how difficult it was for families to gain access to those accounts. We don’t always share our passwords with anyone, much less our parents or significant others. The process to get control of many online accounts is arduous to say the least. The article recommended making a master list of  your accounts so that, in the event you can no longer access them, some one can take the appropriate action.

It’s not a list that will be laying around on my desk. It’s going with all other important documents in a very special place. That way, no matter what happens, someone can update this blog…

I’m marking this off, even though it will continue to be updated.

My Conversation with Bill Flores

One of the added perks to my job is getting to meet some pretty important people. A few weeks back I had the chance to sit down, one-on-one, with my Congressman. Bill Flores was elected a year ago on a landslide vote defeating an incumbent 20-year Democrat. His election was seen as a ‘changing of the guard’ throughout the district.

One year in office and he told me he’s disappointed. He’s not where he thought he would be after a year. Not much has been accomplished in Congress. He contends the House is trying to move things forward, but the Democratically-controlled Senate and White House are dragging their feet.

No matter what your political inclinations, I believe that Bill Flores spoke honestly with me about the frustration that he feels. A frustration that we all feel.

Scratching another goal off the list – Interview an elected official. 

P.S. I rushed over to the Congressman’s office after having just produced a show with breaking news of a plane crash South of Brazos County. I should have tightened my tie, I know, but the Congressman understood. 

KBTX Post: Making the ‘High Definition’ Change

If you told me when I graduated high school that by 24 I would have a job at a station close to home, anchor the morning show and be there when that station switched to HD, I would have said you were crazy.
The last ten months have been a whirlwind of change. Some people said goodbye. Some people we’ve welcomed into the KBTX family. Each change has moved the station toward one goal; being the best we can. It’s a goal we try to fulfill every day. I’m not out to waste your time or mislead you. Neither is anyone else who works for KBTX.
The biggest change is our High Definition transition. If you’ve watched in the last 48 hours, I hope you’ve noticed the change. You are seeing KBTX in a way that it has never been see before. HD is the last big hurdle (for now, anyway) for most television stations.
It means that we’re getting a new newsroom and studio. Those projects are currently underway now, and will be progressing quickly over the next few months. Everyone is excited about the new digs. So, please mind our dust if you have to come by the station or if you see some construction in the background during a newscast.
It also means I have to be more particular about what I wear each morning. Never imagined that, at 24, I’d have a hard time picking out what to wear! It’s a jungle out there. Does this tie match this shirt? Is this tie too “busy” for the camera? Is this pattern too small? Will these colors run?
The questions abound.
Not to mention, my new best friend is a lint roller! We have a lot of animals come onto the set each week. As an animal-lover, I’m having a hard time to restrain from petting the animals and picking them up. I know the second I do, I’ll be covered in fur. Thankfully, we have lint rollers just about everywhere, just in case.

So stay with us as we grow to better serve you and the entire Brazos Valley. As our General Manager Mike Wright says,”You’ll never be at a station making this type of bold change ever again!” We hope you guys are just as excited as we are.
Feel free to get in touch with me!
Twitter: @TVsMichaelOder
Facebook: Michael Oder
Google+: +Michael Oder
Email: oder@kbtx.com
Phone: 979-574-7653
Carrier Pigeon: 4141 E. 29th Street, Bryan, TX 77802
(okay, so the last one is a joke. But if you have trained carrier pigeons, that’s awesome!)

I work for KBTX-TV in Bryan/College Station. I blog for the station, but like to include that content on my personal blog as well. I have disabled comments here in hopes that you will visit KBTX.com. The original blog post is here.

Waiting on a Blue Box

Texas World Speedway, near turn 3.
Most of my friends know my passion for Science Fiction. Good or bad, it doesn’t really matter; I love it. 
I was working a camera at Texas World Speedway in September. I was in the middle of the track and this blue bow was the only thing around me. It reminded me of the TARDIS from Dr. Who. 
If you’ve ever seen the show, the Doctor travels through time and space in a blue police call box. It’s roughly the size of a port-a-potty, but it’s larger on the inside than it’s shape lets on.
I spent the whole day thinking that at any moment the Doctor would bound out of the port-a-potty, bewildered at what happened to his TARDIS and why it smelt so awful on the inside.

Meeting Mr. Rather

My job affords me some great luxuries. Usually it’s a pass or ticket to some big event, but every now and then I get the chance to meet someone. I’m a graduate of Sam Houston State University’s Mass Communications program. The program is housed in the Dan Rather Communications Building. Rather is a graduate of SHSU as well. I spent four years learning about my one, true passion in a building with his name on it. Two weeks ago, I got to meet Dan Rather. 
Me. Dan Rather. My friend (and current SHSU student) Josh. 
It was a small moment, but it had a very big impact. Mr. Rather is a huge professional role model to me. Regardless of your personal opinion of him, Mr. Rather has done so much for journalism and, especially, for Sam Houston State University. 
He was on campus for a full day and spent most of it talking directly to students. He was extremely gracious with his time answering everyone’s questions. The impact that Sam Houston State had on him while he was as student here is still fresh in his mind. The faculty believed in him and wanted him to succeed. They saw the potential in Mr. Rather when he didn’t see it in himself. We need more teachers like that.

I’d Like to Thank the Academy…

I accomplished these goals before the list went active. So I’m going to check them off now!

Submit something I have worked on for an Emmy.
     I’m lucky enough to work with extremely talented people at KBTX. Every football season, for the last eight or so years, the station airs a Texas A&M Preview show before every home game called Aggie Gameday. I was honored to produce it last year. We made some changes, brought the show into the social media century and produce quality television.
     This year we submitted one show and one segment from the end of the 2010 season to the Lonestar Chapter of the Emmy’s. We should find out this month who is nominated. After that, it’s in the hands of the voters.
     I’m extremely nervous. Every time I think that I’ve forgotten about the nominations coming up, I think about the nominations coming up. It’s a dirty, vicious cycle. I think we stand a good chance to be nominated, but we do have some great competition. So we’ll see!

Become an Emmy member.
     This was a nice by-product of helping out the Lonestar Emmy’s last year. If you help judge entries, they let you be a member. For free. All I had to do was watch about three dozen DVD entries and score them. Piece of cake! Plus, it helped me get some great ideas for Aggie Gameday.
     Sadly, they don’t hand out membership cards or anything, so I can’t say that I’m a card carrying member. Maybe one day they’ll have cards. Who knows. But I’m proud to be a member and hopefully can submit work that others will find just as fascinating as I do.

Two down; 99 to go!

Round Two Begins

Here we go! This is my second list, my second try at being goal-oriented. I took a few off the first list, but not many. My hope is that these goals will be more attainable. I will have exactly 1,001 days to complete these goals.
Begin date: September 1, 2011
End date: May 29, 2014
Financial
Put $25 into savings from each pay check.
Track my expenses for 1 week.
Pay $500 of my credit card.
Pay $1,000 of my credit card.
Pay $1,500 of my credit card.
Pay off my credit card.
Pay $3,000 off my car.
Pay $5,000 off my car.
Pay $8,000 off my car.
Pay $10,000 off my car.
Pay off my car.
Donate money back to the Mass Communications department at SHSU.
Invest money in the stock market.
Pay for the person behind me in line at the drive-thru.
Buy two new suits.
Buy a new computer.
Health
Drop 10 pounds.
Drop 20 pounds.
Have a 32 inch waist again (if possible).
Get my blood pressure back to normal.
Get a physical every year.
No beer or alcohol for 31 days.
Own a bicycle.
Get my cholesterol back below normal.
Go to the dentist each year.
Career
Attend a workshop to better myself in my career.
Build a resume tape.
Own a copy of every story I’ve done that has aired (script and video/no vosots).
Submit something I have worked on for an Emmy.
Submit a story to the Texas Associated Press awards.
Submit a reporter tape to the Texas Associated Press awards.
Submit a story to the Lonestar Press Awards.
Submit a story for the Governor’s Barbara Jordan award.
Become an Emmy member.
Buy a professional grade video camera.
Submit a reporter tape for the Lonestar Emmys.
Create two Aggie Gameday promos.
Make a list of “Rules” from things I’ve learned on the job (20 “rules”).
Apply for a job in another city.
Interview a celebrity.
Interview an elected official.
Look into hiring an agent.
Blog for my personal website once a month.
Purchase www.michaeloder.com.
Design a website for self-promotion.
Write, shoot, edit five (5) videos for my blog.
Write and get published an Op/Ed piece on a topic I feel strongly about.
Blog for the station once a month.
Increase my personal gear collection by 2 pieces a year.

Create a “One-Man-Band” bag (mics, cables, connectors, IFB, etc.)

Personal
Get my concealed handgun license.
Get a massage.
Create a 5 year plan.
Visit my uncle’s grave.
Get CPR and first aid certified.

Cooking
Go a week without eating out.
Bake 3 pies from scratch.
Brew my own beer.
Cook my way through an entire cookbook.

Travel
Go to the Caldwell Kolache Festival.
Go to Fair on the Square in Hunstville.
Attend a SHSU Homecoming event hosted by my major.
Visit the San Jacinto Monument.
Visit the Battleship Texas.
Visit the USS Lexington in Corpus Christie.
Visit all Presidential Libraries in Texas (0/3).
Go to Good Oil Days in Humble.
Go to a concert.
Take a road trip to another state.
Attend a Sci-Fi convention.
Go to RenFest in period dress.
Go camping once.
Attend the midnight showing of the next Star Trek movie.
Go on a date.

Other Projects
Finish an entire coloring book.
Start and finish a “365 pictures” project.
Learn to tie a bow tie.
Collect 25 quotes that inspire/give me strength.
Complete the collection of state quarters that my grandfather gave me.
Take a MENSA test just for the hell of it.
Memorize two limericks.
Donate 1,000 grains of rice at www.freerice.com.

Complete one 26 Things project.
Post 10 videos to my YouTube account.
Record one project for www.librivox.org.
Score a bowling game by hand.
Score a college baseball game.
Build my own jib/crane cam.
Create a “go” bag for emergencies.
Vote in every election I am eligible for (municipal, state, federal).
Find a creative use for my growing collection of fortune cookie fortunes.

Build a Home Theater PC and fill it with my DVDs, CDs, TV shows.
Take the Jeopardy Online Contestant Challenge.
Collect and organize all my online logins and passwords.
Learn one song on the guitar.
Learn one song on the piano.

Practice my trumpet once a month.
Audition for the Brazos Valley Symphony, or similar organization.
Learn to play the guitar.
Learn to play the piano.

Do Unto Others

I remember exactly what the sunrise looked like on the morning of September 11, 2001. As a high school freshman, I never noticed the sunrise. That morning the sun came up through the clouds making a perfect shilohette of the football stadium. I got out of my mom’s car and stepped into a puddle from rain the night before. That’s when I noticed.
It’s a day that I know many people will not forget. In the year’s since 2001 I’ve always looked for ways that I can remember that day and the feeling of unity that flowed out across the United States in the months after.
Texas business owner, EnviroMedia co-founder Kevin Tuerff, was stranded in Newfoundland on 9/11. The small Canadian town of Gander took him and about 7,000 other stranded passengers in for a few days. Moved by the kindness of complete strangers, Tuerff started Pay It Forward 9/11.

He’s asking all of us to do one act of kindness on or before the 10th anniversary of 9/11. Then tweet it. Simple enough. For every tweet tagged with #PIFFoundation, Tuerff will donate $1 up to $10,000.
He shares his story in this video:
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=taQt42zqrKs]

I think this is a great way to pay respect to the lives lost that day, and after. Pay it forward. Let’s bring back the sense of unity, pride and respect that was felt after 9/11, even if it’s just for a day.

You can find the Pay It Forward Foundation online here.

Follow the foundation on Twitter @PIFFoundation

I blog for the station I work for, KBTX-TV, in Bryan, TX. I’ve disabled comments for this story here and ask that you leave them at the station’s website. Click here for a link to this blog post at KBTX.com.

The End of the First Round

The last 1,001 days have been the most challenging of my life. In just under three years I’ve graduated from college, started a career and lived on my own. With a few exceptions, it’s been a positive experience.

For background on what a 101 in 1,001 list is, click here.

One of the biggest issues I’ve had to deal with is making the time for things that are important, or that I find important. People laugh when I say I’m married to my job. My career occupies more of my time than anything else right now. Will it be that way forever? I certainly hope not.

These 101 goals I’ve listed were an attempt by me to expand my life outside of my career. There are some job-oriented goals on the list, but most of them have absolutely nothing to do with television.

Out of 101 goals, I accomplish 20.

The remaining 81 goals weren’t too difficult or impossible. I think they were just too idealistic. Granted, it shouldn’t take me over two years to learn the guitar. I just didn’t make the time to practice every day. 

All good things must come to an end. This first list wasn’t perfect, but it was a solid first attempt. I’ve already created another 101 goals. My starting date will be September 1st.

I’m going to try it again. I’ll be posting the list soon, if your interested.

The Next 101

Since I’ve got about three months left on my first 101 Goals list, I’ve been working on the next 101. I might not have accomplished many goals on the first list, but I decided to continue with these lists because I like being goal driven. Regardless of what gets crossed off, or not, you still have a destination. Strangely, the fun comes from trying to reach that destination and not the actual goal.

I’ve learned a lot about myself over the last two and three-quarters years. I learned what goals are doable and which goals are beyond difficult. I’ve learned that I need serious work on my personal motivation. My work ethic when it pertains to my career is unparalleled. Transferring that over to my personal life is something I hope these new goals can help me with.

At 73, I’m stalled. I keep finding a few other things to put on the list. Ideally, I’d like to have over 101 goals so I can prune and weed out the less important ones.

These are in no particular order other than when I had the idea and wrote it down. I’m asking for suggestions or ideas. The new list starts August 26, 2011. (list after the jump)

New 101
Attend a workshop to better myself in my career.
Build a resume tape.
Own a copy of every story I’ve done that has aired (script and video/no vosots).
Get CPR and first aid certified.
Go a week without eating out.
Bake 3 pies from scratch.
Brew my own beer.
Cook my way through an entire cookbook.
Finish an entire coloring book.
Track my expenses for 1 week.
Start and finish a “365 pictures” project.
Purchase www.michaeloder.com.
Design a website for self-promotion.
Write, shoot, edit five (5) videos for my blog.
Put $25 into savings from each pay check.
Pay off my car.
Pay off my credit card.
Learn to tie a bow tie.
No beer or alcohol for 31 days.
Collect 25 quotes that inspire/give me strength.
Complete the collection of state quarters that my grandfather gave me.
Attend the midnight showing of the next Star Trek movie.
Take a MENSA test just for the hell of it.
Memorize two limericks.
Donate money back to the Mass Communications department at SHSU.
Get a physical every year.
Go on a date.
Drop 10 pounds.
Drop 20 pounds.
Have a 32 inch waist again (if possible).
Donate 1,000 grains of rice at www.freerice.com.
Complete one 26 Things project.
Post 10 videos to my YouTube account.
Write and get published an Op/Ed piece on a topic I feel strongly about.
Record one project for www.librivox.org.
Go to RenFest in period dress.
Make a list of “Rules” from things I’ve learned on the job (20 “rules”).
Score a bowling game by hand.
Score a college baseball game.
Submit something I have worked on for an Emmy.
Submit a story to the Texas Associated Press awards.
Submit a reporter tape to the Texas Associated Press awards.
Submit a story to the Lonestar Press Awards.
Submit a story for the Governor’s Barbara Jordan award.
Become an Emmy member.
Buy a professional grade video camera.
Increase my personal gear collection by 2 pieces a year.
Create a “One-Man-Band” bag (mics, cables, connectors, IFB, etc.)
Build my own jib/crane cam.
Create a “go” bag for emergencies.
Own a bicycle.
Vote in every election I am eligible for (municipal, state & federal).
Go camping once.
Find a creative use for my growing collection of fortune cookie fortunes.
55. Apply for a job in another city.
Visit the San Jacinto Monument.
Visit the Battleship Texas.
Visit the USS Lexington in Corpus Christie.
Visit all Presidential Libraries in Texas (0/3).
Attend a Sci-Fi convention.
Build a Home Theater PC and fill it with my DVDs, CDs, TV shows.
Take the Jeopardy Online Contestant Challenge.
Look into hiring an agent.
Go to the Caldwell Kolache Festival.
Go to Fair on the Square in Hunstville.
Attend a SHSU Homecoming event hosted by my major.
Go to Good Oil Days in Humble.
Interview a celebrity.
Interview an elected official.
Collect and organize all my online logins and passwords.
71. Get my blood pressure back to normal.
Learn one song on the guitar.
Learn one song on the piano.