Live or Memorex?

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I’m eager to publish (what is hopefully) the last explanation behind my music video. It was posted first on February 6, and within a week (thanks to the PyroManiac) the video was viewed over 1200 times. I don’t know how many of those views were actually by different people since the Pecadillo informed us that it was not unusual for him to hear the video playing two or three times per visit to his parents’ house. Nevertheless, I know it’s been viewed by some who are beyond my normal readership since a few total strangers approached me at the Shepherds’ Conference last month singing the song.

Of course, many were concerned, and rightly so, about the condition of my Apple laptop. So on February 12 I posted the first Behind the Music explanation, namely that the Mac is in fantastic condition and fully operational.

However, in the comments some discussion arose related to the nature of the outtake at the end of the video, namely whether the fall was staged or a providentially captured blooper. Jim from OldTruth was the first to ask for another “behind the scenes” look and then a friendly disagreement ensued between he and Trinian, as Trinian graciously guessed that I was at least a “temporary” klutz while Jim concluded that it was “totally staged” since the sound effects were “too perfect.”

It has been some two months since that post. The YouTube view count currently sits at 2095. I continue to be amazed that people think it’s funny. And then last night Trinian exclaimed:

Enough stalling! I must know, was the fall staged or legit?!

Okay. The fall was 100% purposeful. In fact, I had been planning on taking this dive for almost two years. Every time I ran on my treadmill for those two years I was choreographing my moves mentally to maximize visual effect and minimize personal pain. From my perspective both were achieved with flawless execution.

This was no small feat. The filming required a one time shot. A second take (let alone a third or fourth) would have required a retake of the entire treadmill sequence, including a new set of dry clothes, being doused with more freezing water, and considerably more cleanup.

First, I set the speed of the belt two miles an hour slower than my normal pace. This gave me a sense of greater control and lowered the likelihood of hurt if something did go really wrong. Then at the pivotal moment I stepped onto the side of the deck while simultaneously bending my knee to give the appearance that I had slipped off the treadmill entirely. I had positioned a number of metallic objects a few feet away from the machine, close enough for me to knock over but far enough away that I could control the crash. Truth be told, we couldn’t have generated better sound effects in the editing room. Though we were unsure about what kind of footage we captured at the time, everything worked out smashingly. And seriously, that watering can rolling around on its edges at the very end is priceless.

Thanks again to the Intern and to my wife for help to make the video, and thanks to all of you for watching it…and still coming back to the Void.