Canucks, Olympics, Kids, and Youth Ministry: A Breakdown of 200 YouTube Videos

Early this morning (or late last night…depending on your perspective) I posted a video of Sean singing Taio Cruz’ hit song “Dynamite” on YouTube. Check it out if you haven’t already…thank God he doesn’t take after me when it comes to singing talent.

A number to the left of the screen caught my eye; it turns out that Sean’s “Dynamite” video is the 200th video I’ve posted on my clayimoo YouTube account. I began reflecting on just how large of a number that is, especially when you consider the time it takes to film, edit, and then post just one video. By reaching 200 videos, I’ve proven that either I really enjoy making videos or I have no life. Probably a combo of both.

My first YouTube video was from back on July 4, 2006: it was Sean and Jake’s stirring rendition of O Canada…a video that has been viewed just under 2,500 times. Since then, I’ve amassed 177 subscribers, 19 friends, 11,500 profile views, and over 310,000 hits.

Of the 200 videos, 49 (24.5%) of them belong to the CCC series called Clay’s Canucks Commentary. I started doing the CCCs back in April 2010 on the heels of the popular Olympic Video Blog series I did for the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Speaking of the Olympic Video Blogs, I made 24 (12%) of those videos. Coming in at a close third with 22 videos (11%) are my youth ministry and work-related videos. This number would have been a tad higher if I included my personal contributions to both the oyyamvancouver and ymovancouver accounts.

The rest of the video totals break down like this:
• 17 videos (8.5%) about Jacob
• 13 videos (6.5%) about our family vacations
• 11 videos (5.5%) that feature at least 2 of our 3 kids relatively equally
• 11 videos (5.5%) that feature live musical performances
• 10 videos (5%) about Sean
• 9 videos (4.5%) about sports or featuring live sports footage
• 9 videos (4.5%) featuring me doing something funny, silly or embarrassing (hello MuchMusic)
• 8 videos (4%) about Kayla
• 8 videos (4%) of me speaking at a conference, rally, workshop, or wedding reception
• 5 videos (2.5%) that were Imoo Boys Game Reviews…weren’t these supposed to be weekly?
• 4 videos (2%) featuring family and/or friends

A few observations about the breakdown:
• Combining the CCCs, Olympic videos, and other sports videos results in 82 videos (41%).
• The kids are featured in 51 videos (25.5%).
• I’ve posted 17 videos (8.5%) about myself and that doesn’t include the CCCs or Olympic videos…insert snarky (yet probably true) comment here.
• Despite being the middle child, there are essentially the same number of videos featuring Jacob (17 videos) as Sean and Kayla videos combined (18 videos). Jake’s a pretty entertaining kid.

With respect to date, I posted:
• 7 videos (3.5%) in 2006
• 27 videos (13.5%) in 2007
• 20 videos (10%) in 2008
• 18 videos (9%) in 2009
• 79 videos (39.5%) in 2010…thanks to CCCs and Olympic Video Blogs
• 51 videos (24.5%) in 2011…extrapolated to 68 videos by the end of the year

And here are my Top 10 Videos by view total:

1. The Ultimate Canucks Haiku (posted March 11, 2007): 29,500 views. Our entry into the first-ever Canucks web contest garnered us some publicity and winner of the Ultimate Canucks Family.
2. John Angotti Singing “I Can Only Imagine” (posted February 20, 2008): 17,000 views. Catholic recording artist and songwriter doing a moving rendition of Mercy Me’s mega-hit.
3. YMO Spirit Day 2007: Live Out Loud “Everything by Lifehouse” (posted December 9, 2007): 14,800 views. Footage of the first-time our office presented this emotional skit.
4. Dave and Kathy’s Wedding Reception Entrance (posted April 23, 2007): 10.800 views. One of the most creative wedding reception entrances I’ve been a part of…let alone heard of.
5. Matt Maher Singing “Alive Again” at NCYC 2009 in Kansas City (posted November 24, 2009): 8,900 views. Matt had the Sprint Center rocking with this powerful anthem about waking up for the Gospel.
6. Josh Blakesley “Be Lifted High” (posted December 10, 2006): 8,600 views. Taken from his performance at the National Catholic Conference on Youth Ministry in Las Vegas.
7. 2010 Winter Olympics Video Blog #6 (posted February 10, 2010): 8,300 views. The one time I let Sean host the video blog and it’s the most viewed-one!
8. Imoo Hockumentary: The Ultimate Canucks Documentary (posted March 5, 2007): 7,800 views. Witness Sean and Jake as toddlers in this 2005 video that started it all.
9. 2010 Winter Olympics Video Blog #8 (posted February 13, 2010): 7,700 views. I talk about the Opening Ceremonies, the Olympic Torch Relay, and visit the Bell Ice Cube.
10. Child-Like Faith (posted August 1, 2006): 7,100 views. The video I try to sneak into every talk I do. It’s also the video that shows far the boys’ speech has come!

I certainly feel blessed that I’ve been able to chronicle some memorable events and moments over the past few years. Whether it’s one of my kids performing or one of the Canucks scoring, I’m grateful to have these memories to relive at the click of a mouse.

And I’m thankful to all of you who watch them! Here’s to 200 more!

CCC – Clay’s Canucks Commentary for September 22: Pre-Season Preview

Welcome to the first CCC of the 2011-12 NHL season.

I start of this CCC but commenting on the backlash I got from some of playoff CCC’s last year. Nothing wrong with friendly discussion and debate, but there is something wrong with insulting my ethnicity, looks, and sexual orientation.

As we look forward to the start of the opening season in 2 weeks, I take a look at the battles shaping up for both the forwards and defence. In particular, I express my hopes that Keith Ballard has a great season with the departure of Christian Ehrhoff.

As well, I look at the competition for spots on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th lines. With Kesler and Raymond starting the season injured, it will pave the way for a couple of new faces. Can Owen Nolan make a comeback? Will Andrew Ebbett make the most of this opportunity? We’ll see soon enough!

Putting Things into Proper Perspective

As sports fans in general (and hockey fans in particular) continue to mourn the tragic plane crash in Russia that claimed 43 lives (including players and coaches from the Lokomotiv Yaroslavl KHL team), many people have named the summer of 2011 as the worst-ever in the history of hockey.  And when you consider the sudden deaths of Derek Boogaard, Rick Rypien and Wade Belak (all within the last four months), it’s hard to disagree.

This latest tragedy affects different people across the world for various reasons.  Canucks fans are fondly remembering Pavol Demitra, who played here for two seasons and had an excellent 2010 Winter Olympics tournament here in Vancouver.  Combined with Rypien’s death last month, Luc Bourdon’s death in 2008, and the death of Taylor Pyatt’s fiancee Carly in 2009, it’s been an extremely difficult three-year period for fans on the West Coast. 

The Czech Republic lost 3 ex-NHL players in Jan Marek, Karel Rachunek, and Josef Vasicek.  And both Lokomotiv head coach Brad McCrimmon and the recently-retired Wade Belak were born in the prairie province of Saskatchewan.

But as tragic as these hockey deaths have been, sadly these types of deaths happen every day…just to less famous people.  We see stories and read accounts of people being killed by earthquakes, washed away by tsunamis, and starving to death in Africa.  But for some reason we don’t always give these people the same amount of attention that we do to professional athletes.

Not to mention our own family members and friends who may be suffering from disease, illness, and disability.  They often fight a silent yet noble battle with little to no fanfare.

The truth is, catastrophe and disaster bring people together.  Despair can lead to hope…and we can only hope that tragedy will lead to triumph.

As much as it pained us to see the Vancouver Canucks lose game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals, recent events both inside and outside of the sporting world help put things into proper perspective.

Don’t get me wrong:  I’ll still be screaming, cheering, and jumping around like a madman whether I’m at Rogers Arena or in the friendly confines of my living room.

But I hope to do so with the proper perspective.   Because perspective helps us gain an appreciation of the bigger picture and reminds us as to what’s important.