Eighteen Story Climb To Work It's not the fear of heights, it's the fear of landing.

One of the points I've stressed to anyone who asks me about my job in broadcasting is that I go to work everyday having little to no clue what I'll be doing. On the rare occasion I have an idea of what's going on a breaking news story will certainly change notion. Take into account the events of Thursday July 24th, 2014. I went to work at one in the morning like every other day. I wore dark blue khaki's and a dress shirt to work; I rarely wear khaki's to work. In my experience I've found that a good pair of blue jeans help get me through any situation in the field. I'm not sure why I wore the khaki's; it's a miracle I'm even able to dress myself at the hour I wake up every day. When the assignments came out around four thirty in the morning it was brought to my attention I'd be doing the Daybreak live shot with Kevin O'Neill. Kevin's live shots are usually pretty fun, and not physically tasking; I've been all over Western New York with Kevin for his live shots. The only issue Kevin and I have had in the field was on Thanksgiving morning 2013 when the live truck mast jammed after the hit and I was stuck in Niagara Falls for ninety minutes waiting to be rescued. On this day Kevin was going to be live at the Buffalo medical campus highlighting some of the recent construction projects with developer LP Ciminelli. At the time I thought "Oh cool no big deal, should be a piece of cake." Then I was told I'd be climbing an eighteen story construction crane to go live with our TVU backpack.  After doing a spit take and asking the producer if they were serious, which he was indeed, panic began to set in. Let the record show that I don't have a problem with heights. I have no fear of heights. It's the fear of  landing that can be stifling. It's that fifty to thousand foot range where there's a possibility, if I did fall, that I could survive that is crippling. But I really didn't have time to dwell on it. By this time it was five AM and I needed to gather equipment for the live shot. Fast forward to six thirty AM and it's time to make the climb. We've been given the safety speech by the foreman, told countless time by LP Ciminelli staff to take our time and be safe; they were probably worried about an accident on live television - hell, I was worried too. We were given latex gloves, hard hats (that were more of a hindrance, thanks OSHA) and safety goggles that fogged up from my fat guy breathing whilst climbing. Two hundred twenty five ladder steps to the top of the construction crane. Two hundred twenty five curse words. Two hundred twenty five moments where my chest felt like it would explode. But the climb was worth it for a view of Buffalo that I hadn't seen before. IMG_2357

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