|Master Ken and David Law of Gourmet Mushrooms|
On Tuesday morning, I got an email about a mushroom discussion panel hosted by Kitchen Table Talks at 7 p.m. in the Mission District of San Francisco. Master Ken and 3 other mushroom experts would be giving an overview of the science, history and lore, dispel myths, and offer hands-on practical information.
I immediately tried to RSVP to the event but it had already been fully booked, so I emailed Master Ken to let him know that I could record the talk for him. I was determined to get in the event and tell them that I was Master Ken's videographer if I had to.
I arrived at the door about 10 minutes before 7, and my name was actually on the guest list. Yes! I quickly went into the venue and occupied the last empty chair in the front row. The event was held in the basement of Viracocha. The lighting in there was very dim - great for clubbing and concert or Kitchen Table Talks but not for clear video recording or show off any details of the mushrooms.
In addition to Master Ken, Co-founder of Gourmet Mushrooms, David Law, Co-owner of Far West Fungi, Toby Garrone, and Executive Chef of Millennium Restaurant, Eric Tucker, were on the discussion panel. All of them have extensive knowledge in mushroom cultivation and preparation.
The 2-hour talk covered a wide range of topics about mushrooms. One of the highlights was the trivia question for the prize of an assorted mushroom basket. Master Ken picked out a wild mushroom from one of his boxes and asked whether anyone could identify it. The only child in the room, who also sat in the front row, went up to the front to take a closer look and correctly identified it. He is 8 years old! Everyone was surprised and amazed. You can see that portion in Part 6 at 5:10 of the YouTube video. He made me wish that I had a child so I could expose him to the wonder of fungi kingdom. That thought lasted for about 3 seconds then I snapped out of it.
For the last 3 days, I worked on the video clips feverishly. I don't work with video clips very often, and I discovered one misspelled word in each of my first 2 finished full length videos after they were all compressed and burned to CDs. I had to redo the process several times and kept proof reading the opening and ending credits to make sure that I didn't skip or misspell any word. I didn't cut any footage off since Master Ken asked me to record everything if possible.
Now I officially have a YouTube Channel. You can watch and/or listen to the entire talk at Magnificent Mushrooms playlist. The video quality isn't all that great but the audio is quite clear since I got the front row seating.