Friday, May 6, 2011


Sports videographers. They are like offensive lineman, the guys who
do all the dirty work, but rarely get any glory. They're as dependable
as the mailman who delivers through rain, sleet, and snow. Unfortunately,
they too, are like umpires in baseball, whom you notice only when
they mess up. That comes when they forget to white balance and the
video comes out blue, or  miss a key shot that every other station
has in town but theirs.

But there is a trio of sports videographers at NESN, who bring their
"A" game every night to cover every game in Boston, the best sports
city in the country. Patrick Gamere, John Martin, and Chris Del
Dotto are the glue that holds that network together. They are overworked,
underpaid, and never get the appreciation they deserve.

But these guys, NEVER complain. Oh sure, Martin used to yipe when
I put one bag of sugar in his Hazelnut coffee, instead of two. Del Dotto
would cry like a baby when there wasn't enough Jack to go along with
his Ginger. And Gamere would bum out when Rajon Rondo turned
the ball over in traffic at a key point during a game. Other than that,
these guys are pure gold.

They are stud photogs who always put the team ahead of themselves.
They'd fit in perfectly with Bill Belichick and the Patriots. Hard-working,
versatile, and soldiers who never say "I" before "We".

If you're on Facebook, check out Patrick Gamere and see his gallery
of photos from work. You'll see what I'm talking about. There is a picture
of Gamere in the middle of a Celtics celebration, a champagne shower
drenching him, but he remains steady, with a laser-like focus washed
over his face, a 30-pound camera hoisted over his head. He was
trying to get that one "money" shot that all of New England would see,
but would never know that Gamere shot it.

That's part of their job. They toil in relative obscurity, while bringing
the network to life with great moving pictures. They jockey for position
in locker room scrums that are as crowded as a NYC subway train at
rush hour. They have to deal with elbows, microphones, and overzealous
reporters, who'd run over their mother if it meant getting closer to
an athlete.

If you're at a football game, check out the sidelines. Those guys in
a full-sprint trying to stay ahead of the play? Yep, the sports photogs.
Try running with a 30lb weight on your shoulder in a driving rainstorm.
It's not easy. That's what these guys do every day.

These ironmen work weekends, holidays, and pretty much whenever
the station orders them to cover an event. There is long-stretches away
from their families, but you'll never hear them complain.

They'll never gripe about being overlooked or not getting so much
as a "nice job" from management. That's because they are a tight-knit,
all guts, but no glory group like the Navy SEALS, who do their assignment
and don't parade around looking for attention. THEY know when they
capture a great shot. They know when their instinct puts them into
position to get a shot that no other photographer could get. They know
that nobody at the station works as hard as them.

Oh yeah, and they're the ones who have to deal with prima donna reporters,
who demand that they shoot their stand-ups perfectly and get the lighting
on their face just right. They have to put on their Dr. Phil hats to
soothe temperamental talent who keep flubbing  the lines during
the close of their reports. They have to channel their inner Anthony
Robbins to help "talent" from becoming emotional wrecks.

These photogs do it all, but never get the credit they deserve.
Patrick Gamere, John Martin, and Chris Del Dotto are among the
best in the business. Nobody works hard or is more committed than
the "Big 3" of NESN.

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