The first day of my new internship went surprisingly well. I didn’t stutter over my own name when introducing myself to people, I didn’t forget to take the lens cap off when I went to photograph a press conference with Metro Council President Tom Hughes, and I didn’t get lost in the maze of a building when dashing out to go put more money in my parking meter. Being that I am usually a walking magnet for a hotbed of disastrous situations and nickname-inducing mistakes, I was shocked at how well my first day went, especially considering the rate at which my heart was beating unnaturally fast all the live long day. You know what they say, “the first day’s always the toughest.” Well, I’m going to have to respectfully disagree, because I think the first day is always the sneakiest. It totally played me for a fool, because my mild panic attack arrived on my second day, and completely caught me off guard.
I got assigned a solo assignment, taking a photo of the suddenly empty Macaroni Grill downtown for an accompanying article of it’s recent closure. Simple enough, right? Wrong. I arrived at 3rd and Yamhill and started snapping away. Everything was going okay until I started to over think my simple task (a specialty of mine). Oh god, do they want a photo of people in front of it? Should I wait until the area looks really busy? Or should I wait until the sidewalk in front of it is empty so the focus is just on the restaurant? Maybe I should get some super artsy angles of the overhanging sign? And why oh why didn’t I have a lens with a wider angle and polarizing filters to reduce the glare from the glass? I’m sure I looked like the world’s biggest disaster posted outside of Chipotle with two cameras around my neck dashing in front of traffic to try and get the perfect shot of an empty restaurant building. Just to top off my state of panic it was roughly 90 degrees out, and I still wasn’t clear on the office dress code, so I was now sweating from both nervousness and heatstroke. Excellent.
When I got back to the office and began sorting through and editing my 963 photos (a ridiculous amount for an assignment of this caliber), I realized how unnecessary my franticness had been. My photo editor chose one of my simplest photos to run in the newspaper, one with a few people milling about and a car turning the corner in front of the restaurant. The same car I had cursed at silently for being in my way, by the way. So really the moral of the second day of my internship was to not panic until it’s absolutely necessary, because that terrifying feeling of wrongdoing is usually just a fabrication of my disastrous nerves!