Sorry for the late post today. Between all the travel and random days off, I didn’t even realize it was Wednesday until late in the day. And since I have published a new post every Monday, Wednesday and Friday since launching this blog, that means it’s post day.
We are in that week-plus between the end of the school year and the start of summer camp. It’s the most unstructured time of the summer. Veronica took the kids to visit her sister for a few days while I was at the NHL Draft, but now we’re all back together. Veronica and I are trading days off this week and today was my day.
Ryan has been bugging me for several days to help him “put a video on YouTube.” He loves YouTube. He can spend hours — if we let him — watching hockey highlights of all varieties. Lately, his favorite has been re-watching the Devils’ player intros from the Stanley Cup Final.
When he started making noise about putting a video on YouTube, he didn’t quite understand that we’d have to actually film something first. Once he understood that, it became a question of what. Shockingly, all his ideas centered around hockey. He wanted me to film him playing an entire game of NHL2K on the Wii. I explained that video would be way too long. We went back and forth on how long his video could be. He wanted 10 minutes, I countered with three, telling him that it would take hours to transcode and upload a 10-minute video. (OK, so I stretched the truth a little).
Once he reluctantly agreed to a shorter video, we got down to specifics. He has on several occasions asked me to film him playing Hockey Guys. His play-by-play calls have become quite intricate, and it’s actually fun to watch. He packs in so many nuanced details that he has picked up watching highlights on NHL.com and the NHL Network, such as the sound he makes — it’s hard to describe — that approximates the sound of the “wipe” between highlights on his favorite show, NHL Tonight. You kind of have to see them side-by-side to understand, but trust me, it’s highly accurate.
He agreed to do some Hockey Guys highlights and have me film those. I told him I’d give him some cues to tell him when his three minutes were nearing an end. After we were done, I decided rather than just upload the clip to YouTube, we’d do some editing on iMovie first. He had typed a large introductory script, which he displayed on the computer screen and asked me to film. We ended up turning that into scrolling “credits” on the video. We edited out the parts where he was moving his Hockey Guys into position between highlights. We added a few transitions, and we were done.
I have to say, the whole project was pretty fun. And Ryan could not be prouder of himself that he’s actually published on YouTube. Have a look for yourself, as Ryan does play-by-play on some imaginary Flyers-Hurricanes highlights:
The result is 100% Ryan, right down to the explanation of the standings in the “credits.”
This was a child that was always challenged by creative play. But he was found incredible ways to make his Hockey Guys as realistic as possible. From the mini-flashlight he uses to put a “spotlight” on the player who scored (not in this video, because both goals were scored by the road team, duh), to the play-by-play calls he has mimicked from watching hundreds of hours of hockey highlights on TV. Nothing gets by him.
We are looking forward to a somewhat return to structure when camp starts next week, but I have one more day of unstructured time with both kids this week. Who knows what sort of project we’ll get into. This may have been Ryan’s first YouTube video, but I don’t think it will be his last.