As the de facto prep soccer guy for The Press-Enterprise, it appears likely that I will be covering the season through to the end. That means a boys quarterfinal game tonight and a semifinal game on Tuesday, either boys or girls (I'm eyeing that Temecula Valley girls game) and finals on March 3.
So I went to CIF's web site (CIF is the governing body for California high school athletics). I wanted to see where the finals would be at. I found it to be a little vague, actually. CIF says the finals will be at Warren HS and Downey HS. They don't specify who would play where or the times or anything like that. They do, however, inform us in bold and large print that there will be NO phone service at either site.
How am I supposed to do my live blog?
No, seriously though, it's absurd. Phones? They still use those things for internet? Now, if you are at home and choose to use dial-up, that's your choice. Whatever works for you and your budget, right? But for an organization that wants coverage and is trying to provide coverage for its members to basically tell the media that we won't be able to file from there is ridiculous.
For me, personally, it won't be too much of a hassle. I think the games will end early enough for me to go home or to the nearest Starbucks (mmm... coffee) or somewhere else to write. But for prep writers and staff photographers, it means a long haul back to the office (because there are some papers who will have to drive quite a distance to get there and back) and then try and bang out stories and photos quickly.
I guess I'm spoiled. Covering games at Home Depot Center has done that to me, I suppose. The wireless feed was available all season long last year. I don't even think twice about it anymore. I turn on my laptop and - Voila! - I'm online. I worry sometimes about games at other venues but the US-Mexico game in Arizona was the same drill as HDC. Instant internet access.
I'm not a tech guy but it seems to me that it wouldn't take too much trouble to get some sort of cable or broadband internet feed, run it through a router and provide it for us hacks. I know I sound like I'm complaing but when people get their papers on Sunday morning and the story about their school's soccer final is subpar, it's probably because the writer had to rush back to the office to get it done. If I had to hurry and go home after Galaxy games to write my stories, they wouldn't be that good... hmm.. I guess some people would say they're not that good now.