MY STORY in pictures is called @PARIS

 IN words it goes like this:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     I’ve

I’ve been making movies since I was seven years old. Back then we had rotary dial phones and Milton Berle. I made silent horror movies with my cousins with an old Revere camera (yea, that’s a Bolex in the picture but I wasn’t seven then either.) You’d take the film to the drug store and two weeks later it would come back from Kodak. I’d screen my films in the living room.

Now you not only have the capacity to shoot and edit – with sound – but post your work for an audience of maybe millions. And you can do it all in a matter of hours? Maybe minutes.

So I worked for 60 MINUTES for 14 years, NIGHTLINE for 8 years and now SUNDAY MORNING (since 2003) I’ve been all over the world – or well, a lot of it… been detained in virtually every country on the African continent, but I’d go back.

Point of all this is in 1994 I was hired by NIGHTLINE to do “video journals;” I’d go to Iran and Haiti and the South Bronx with (in those days) a Hi8 video camera – alone. I’d shoot the story, write it, cut it and appear as the reporter, cost-effective for them, an incredible education for me. I’m basically doing the same thing for Sunday Morning except I don’t go to war zones and not only do I work in HiDef with a camera slightly larger than my hand but I’m able to cut the stories in Paris and send them to NY by FTP – through the internet (France Telecom offered fiber optic long before Verizon). So I’m making six-minute stories with nothing more than a laptop and the equipment that slips into a Domke bag.

And uuuuuhhhh one other thing ….that’s my grandmother, Warhol and me in 1966. They were friends and colleagues from their time at Harper’s Bazaar. I just wanted to meet girls but …

Andy Warhol’s movies were generally ridiculed and dismissed by virtually everyone outside of his circle. Fact is that the “interminable” movies he made like SLEEP (6 hours), EMPIRE (8 hours) and **** (24 hours) were a brilliant commentary on the difference between movies and all other media. Movies are EDITED and the simple fact that Warhol stuck a single image on the screen for hours at a time challenged the foundation of what cinema was about. If D.W. Griffith and Sergei Eisenstein can be credited with “inventing” modern cinema, Warhol should at least be appreciated for having defied it. Personally, though I only saw one hour of it and that was almost forty years ago, **** was one of the most stunning films I’ve ever seen.


6 responses to “ABOUT ME…?

  1. David —

    I am thrilled to death to see this blog!

    My son, who turned 14 yesterday, and I started a Sunday tradition back when he was small, and that was to watch “CBS Sunday Morning” together. Yeah, I thought it was a “grandma and grandpa” show, too, but we both liked it, and enjoyed our time together watching, me with a cup of coffee and he with his breakfast. It was our Sunday tradition. We used to joke that it was our “church service.”

    I remember the first segment of “Our Man in Paris” I ever saw. I think it was in about 2005, and it was the one about the chimney sweep. It’s been five years, so I am no longer clear about what was all in the segment, but I remember that the chimney sweep came in to do his thing and you went along with it. I remember laughing, I remember that there was a lot of absurdity in the whole deal.

    I watched for your segments on the show because I had a couple of good friends in France, one in Antibes and one in Paris. I liked learning more about Paris from your humorous point-of-view. Several times I Googled to see if there were copies of your segments on CBS.com or on YouTube, only to be disappointed (I think the first time I looked was in 2006, too). I watched “CBS Sunday Morning” and looked forward to your segments up until I up and accidentally moved to Paris myself two years ago and had to stop watching the show. But then I started living a Paris story for myself… I never would have thought five years ago as I watched your segments that I, too, would wind up in Paris.

    Today, I was on Dorie Greenspan’s blog, and found she had posted a video. It looked and sounded familiar, so I clicked on the link she provided, started to read, and with joy and amazement realized that you are the “Our Man in Paris” I had discovered five years ago! My search of over four years to find some of your segments, which I have enjoyed so much, are here. Your stories are HERE, and I am so happy to have found them. Like I wrote: I’m *thrilled*.

    I’ve subscribed, I’ve put you in Google Reader, I’m here, paying attention to what you have to say. So please keep going — keep posting, for I am reading and enjoying very much, especially now that I live here, too.

    I keep stories of my own on my own blog, and find that I have very much kept up with the spirit of your own presentations of Paris: what is the *real* deal with the city, with the ordinary people? I’m not one that finds the glitzy, glowing version of Paris really palatable. I prefer the authentic. Also, Paris is a place I have been slow to fall in love with. It’s not been a natural attraction. My blog exists to help me figure out what there is in Paris for me to love, what I can find to help me gain greater affinity for her. You are welcome to visit there if you have inclination and time.

    Thank you for starting this blog, and I am very much looking forward to reading the posts to come.

    (an alien parisienne)

  2. hello David; Loved and drooled over that French school lunch report
    and menu. But, I have a burning question that was fueled even more by
    the segment. I have been dying to know what French prison food is like?
    I’m sure it’s not the same for white collar criminals as for the lower level
    criminals, but still, if it’s true that you can’t get a bad meal in France, ….
    well what do those convicts get? I’d love to see pictures of their food trays.
    (filled) Do they import Bond white bread just to show them a thing or two,
    or do they get those delicious baguettes with meals? Oh what I wouldn’t do
    for a real look at all this, but not, of course, at the cost of going to jail myself.
    If anyone can answer this for me, it’s you. My friends are just plain bored
    with my curiosity about this , but I’m hoping for some real answers from you
    so I can put this to rest, somewhat. Thanks in advance.!!! EG

  3. I’m impressed by how fast you type.

  4. Hi David my name is Lawrence Maclare from south africa in Soweto to be acxect .i had a plasure of meeting you in 1994 as your driver during the first south african elections , i’m proud to have meet someone like you who inspire’s people like this i’m realy proud of you i even brag about you to my friend that i know you personaly . i just hope that you will respond to this comment as i have lost your contacts and Reggy Harris .i’ll be loging into this web page everyday just to see your response . my email adress is lbmaclare@yahoo.com . plaese man just send me a mail just to confirm that you alwright and still enjoying life .

    • If you want to know why I love my work – read this note — it’s from someone who probably saved my life more than once, who was one of the most incredible people I’ve ever met —and he thinks I’M a big shot —
      Lawrence — IT’S SO GREAT TO HEAR FROM YOU!!!!
      I have thought of you so many times over the years and wondered how you’ve been and what you’re doing these days. I have told people so many times of our experiences together… remember when you borrowed the car that night and thieves tried to hi-jack it? Do you remember the time we were just a few blocks away when a car bomb went off downtown and I made you drive towards it when anybody in their right mind would have said – let’s get out of here?? Then there was that gun battle in (which of the hostels) and I said – oh yea – let’s go!!! I think you were crazy to listen to me but fortunattely we both survived everything. And especially do you remember the night Mandela won and we drove through the streets with the crowds?/ The joy and the singing and dancing !!!! I think I was sitting on the roof of the car and you were so worried!! I think you kept calling up to me BE CAREFULL – what are you doing??!!
      They were crazy times I know but you have no idea how much I cherish them.
      So what ARE you doing? You took me home once to meet your family… how are they?
      Reggie Harris, unfortunately he died not many years later of a heart attack. If you can believe a man as healthy and strong as he was just suddenly dropped dead. I think it was only two or three years after the elections.
      Me, I have a 13 (almost 14) year old daughter who thinks I am her servant. She used to think I knew everything. Now I know NOTHING and the worst is apparently I’ve told her every story I’ve lived through in my 62 years. How can I have lived 62 years and told her everything in her 13 years!!! Do you have children?? As soon as I finish this letter to you I’m going to tell her about you (again)
      So write to me — this is the BEST email I’ve gotten since I put up that blog this summer.
      I feel so good that you are proud of ME! Hah !! I have done notthhing Lawrence — I think it is people like YOU wwho make the world great.

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