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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, June 6, 2010

I caught video stream at just the right time

By Leila Wai
Advertiser Staff Writer

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Leila Wai

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Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser
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Editor's Note: Leila Wai has been with The Advertiser since 2000 as a clerk, then reporter and lead videographer. She is a graduate of Kaiser High School and University of Hawai'i, where she played soccer.

I remember being somewhat skeptical of the new initiative The Advertiser had planned for us: Video.

Because for so long, all I wanted to do was write. And the most interaction I had with a camera was a tiny point-and-shoot that I used to take pictures of me and my friends.

But I embraced it, because it was new, and it was a lot of fun.

It was just in time.

The first major beat I covered as an official videographer was the University of Hawai'i football team in the 2007 season.

At first, the players didn't know what to make of my tiny camera up against the news stations. But the players embraced it and learned how to hold a microphone while I asked the questions and I ended up with some of the best off-the-cuff interviews, like the time Jason Rivers and Ryan Mouton borrowed my camera and took it into the locker room for an impromptu interview with Solomon Elimimian and Adam Leonard.

Yes, it was appropriate for viewing on our website.

It was hard not to get caught up in the excitement as the wins mounted.

My first Mainland road trips with The Advertiser. Overtime at San Jose State. A field goal to win it at Nevada. Colt. The fans swarming the field after Boise State. Washington. 12-0.

And New Orleans.

It was the most amazing year in my professional life. How could I not be spoiled by it?

When people spoke of how the season was a "once-in-a-lifetime" event for the Warriors, I knew it applied to me, too.

And I loved every minute of it.