NYC to RNC: Bring It On

August 30, 2004 8:51 a.m.

A lot of New Yorkers don’t seem too thrilled with the RNC coming to town. Some call it an unnecessary burden on a city still recovering from the horrific attacks of 9/11. Others say Republicans have no business holding a convention in a state they have no hope of winning (registered Democrats outnumber Republicans 5-1 in New York City).
When someone asked me why I thought the convention was being held here, I said, “because we can handle it.”
This is a tough town, with resilient, savvy residents who are used to dealing with headaches including traffic tie-ups, subway slow downs, and security checks.  It also happens to be a perfect place to host out-of-towners, with some of the best restaurants, clubs, museums, shows, and parks in the world.  I say bring the Convention, and any and every other big event.  We can handle it.
I left for work at 3 a.m., catching a cab outside my building that took me to Madison Square Garden and the Farley Post Office across the street, which is home to our FOX workspace for the week: a big room full of computers, desks, editing decks, TV monitors, and racks of equipment. 

The city is a different place in the wee hours of the morning. The streets are calm and quiet, save for a few obviously inebriated young men and women stumbling out of a bar on the corner.  And even at 3 a.m., there are a LOT more police out and about.  I saw dozens, if not hundreds, in less than 20 blocks, inside or outside their squad cars, motor scooters, and vans. 
Some streets are barricaded, and there are numerous blocked roads and checkpoints surrounding the Garden.  I had my credentials checked three times before I entered the Farley building, with Secret Service manning one metal detector, and TSA officials handling the second one I had to pass thru to get to our skybox inside MSG.
It’s going to be a busy week.  I’m doing morning and noon live shots for FOX stations across the country that may not have sent their own team to cover the convention, or maybe only sent a reporter to cover nights.  I have to write a package (a story edited with the best pictures and sound from the day/night before) and then “wrap around it” (introduce the piece, then tag out of it) on camera live and on tape.  I’ll be doing this at least five times every hour (nine times during the 8 a.m. hour!), with a short break to re-write the package for noon.  I finish sometime after 3 p.m. E.T., then hope to make regular appearances on Studio B with my buddy Shep before I head home to get ready to do it all again….