Cross post... also posted on my blog - brianmeloche.com, but this one is slightly edited to address CFConversations.
OK, so it's been almost a year... and you're probably asking where has this podcast gone??? Are you done, or what???
In 2010, and now into 2011, CFHour has been going strong, representing the ColdFusion developer community well, and the pressure I used to feel to get out podcasts just hasn't been there anymore. I was dealing with some issues, and was busy both at work and on some freelance and pro-bono projects, so I didn't feel the need to rush out getting CFConversations. It would come back when I was ready.
I was planning to bring back CFConversations in early 2011, as several things got wrapped up. I got busy at work in January, but my plan was to step down as manager from my user group and focus on being an Adobe Community Professional and get back to regular podcasts. Since then, the results were announced, and I wasn't chosen for either the Adobe Community Professional or the new Adobe Community Champion this year. It was my perfect storm that hit the last half of 2010, with five pets passing away, my wife's job being lost, and a lot of turmoil, that stopped the podcast. I just wasn't in the right frame of mind to be doing anything public. I needed a break, but that break most certainly cost me the ACC/ACP... rightly so, I might add, but it did make me re-evaluate things.
In 2010, we lost four pets, and last month, we lost a fifth. That's all three of our dogs and our two most senior cats. All died to old age. Our beloved pitbull mix, Buster, was the hardest of all. He lost the ability to walk and couldn't even go to the bathroom on his own, and after a week of suffering, we had to put him to sleep. That was one of the worst weeks of my life. Recently, we lost Stella, our last dog, which we had to put down after her dementia had gotten much worse. We've recently adopted a new doggy, who we have named Shorty, who's helped us heal, so things are finally being happier around the Meloche household.
So... why no podcast? Currently, the office/studio where I podcasted regularly has been dismantled and I really don't have a place to podcast from or a computer to podcast with. It's not a top priority, so until I can get to that, I won't have another episode. I'm hoping I'll get back to it by the summer, but I'm going to call CFConversations at this point "on hiatus", which means that it will probably come back, but it may not. I'll let you know once I know.
Without the pressure and the lack of a decent place to podcast from, I decided to devote my current time to something completely unrelated to the podcast or CFConversations, something that I thought needed my involvement right now more than the CF podcasting world does.
If you follow my Twitter stream, you probably already know that I'm a big fan of The Event. In fact, I haven't been tweeting about much else these days. No, I haven't lost my marbles... in fact, things are good these days, especially with Shorty now in our lives. However, I am near-fanatical about this show and I want people to know it!
I am tweeting about The Event a lot these days for one very, very important reason: It's very possible the show will be canceled at the end of the season, and I want to do whatever I can to make sure that doesn't happen!!! We should know in mid May its fate.
It's not a perfect show. It has some flaws. Some of the episodes seem like they could use another draft before they go to air. Since I sold a story to Star Trek: Deep Space Nine way back... wow, fifteen years ago (a story for another time)... I sometimes get the "I could have written a better episode than this" feeling. That's, in my case, a good sign, because I haven't had that feeling when I'm watching a show since Star Trek: TNG was on... and I was as much into that show as I am into The Event.
It's a roller coaster! It's pretty much a cross between 24, Lost, V, Flash Forward and The 4400 (from what I am told... I haven't caught up with that show yet). I was initially intrigued by its combination of action, suspense, science fiction and serialized storytelling that I was very excited when it was announced and was a fan, even before it started. Once it aired, it didn't disappoint, though I did understand some people that were a bit confused by the pilot and how it was told in a very non-linear way... not the best for a casual viewer that may not be fully paying attention. I'll save you from going into a long explanation of the story, as there are other websites that can give you detailed synopses of each episode, such as Wormhole Riders, but we pretty much now know what the Event is, and that it's coming soon (probably the season finale).
SPOILER ALERT!!! If you don't want to be spoiled, don't read on.
At this point (episode 1.17 - five more episodes left in the season), we pretty much know that "the event" is the mass arrival of 2.5 billion humanoid aliens that have superior technology, have infiltrated every level of society, and are hellbent on the "winnowing" mass-extinction of many or even most of the humans on this planet. These aliens, or as what was suggested in one episode "guardian angels", have visited Earth for thousands of years, and are now coming here to day. They want Earth for themselves. Their sun is starting to go supernova, and will be uninhabitable within the next year, so they have to move. We also know that Sean Walker is an outsider, but has been accepted by a tribe of "sentinels" who have also been around for thousands of years to protect us from the angels/aliens, and see him as humanity's best hope for survival. His girlfriend, Leila, at the start of the show, has discovered that she is half human, half alien, and that her father is one of them.
If you haven't gotten into the show, or gave up on it early on... I do suggest you try the two minute replays if you can't watch all of the episodes in their entirety. If you have Hulu Plus, you can watch all 17 episodes with your subscription. If not, the last five are available on Hulu and nbc.com. If you're outside of the US, I'm not sure what might be available. I know citytv.com has episodes on its site for Canadian viewers, but I'm not sure about the rest of the world (please comment if you have info). I have seen download sites on the web... but I'm not condoning that. They are available for purchase on amazon.com and ITunes, as well as the Zune marketplace and I'm sure other places and on demand for many cable systems.
Anyway... so why all the twittering, facebooking and whatnot? Well, the show hasn't done all that well in the ratings. It started strong, but with stiff competition in the schedule, a network that took the show off the air for three months and is having major problems throughout its schedule, and a big budget, the show is in jeopardy of cancellation, and it would be a tragedy if that were to happen. I'm not podcasting these days because my podcast studio has been disassembled, and it's difficult to do the show without it, and I'm pretty busy these days at the office, so I'm taking a break from any open source projects, but what I CAN do is help do what I can to help fans of the show be heard, get people watching the show when it's aired (especially if you're a Nielsen family!!!), talk about it to friends and get them into the show! What's more, I'm trying to do whatever I can do to help rally fans to get the word to NBC Universal to not cancel this show. WE WANT A SEASON 2!!! If it's removed from the NBC schedule, my hope is that they will move the show to one of its sister channels, such as Syfy or USA Network, or bring it back as a mid-season replacement. That might be a good alternative because the show suffered from pre-emptions and that long hiatus. Law & Order: LA, which also went through a long hiatus, has suffered a similar problem in the ratings since its return, and that, and lackluster ratings from the network in general, will help NBC give this show another season. Shows like 24, which has a lot in common with The Event, had a very similar lackluster season 1 but were strong in subsequent seasons, and I am hoping that will be a factor in bringing back the show.
To that end, I have set up a new blog & website at theeventfanatic.com, where I will keep links, theories, episode info and whatever I can find about The Event. Check out my Other Websites page, where I have links to every website, Twitter account and Facebook page I can find devoted to the show. I have also created a new Twitter account devoted just to this site, called @TheEventFanatic. If you're interested in the show, I have moved most of my The Event specific activity to that account, though I still post some on my main @coofuushun account from time to time.
Also, I want to publicize another website that has been created to help fans of the show know what they can do to save the show. It's called savetheevent.blogspot.com. There, you'll find things you can do to help this show.
Thanks for reading! Again, once I can reassemble my office space, I'll hopefully get back to CFConversations, but until then, you've got CFHour (and now 2 Devs Down Under) to get your podcasting fix.