The past week hasn't seen much development on this project. I've practiced a bit with shooting in low light environments with large crowds, coming to the conclusion that:
1) I need some compact way to stabilize the camera. A steadicam of any kind (even a merlin sized one) will be hard to fit and use in a crowd, so I need something even smaller, maybe just a pistol grip or some kind of 2 handed grip/follow focus.
2) MUST BUY A MICROPHONE. This was already on my list of to-dos, but now has been bumped up a couple notches because really, the on-camera sound is just unusable in anything but perfectly ideal conditions.
3) Manually focusing a Canon 50mm F1.8 II is annoying. I need a lens thats just as fast but with a much more accessible focus ring.
The getting real part however came this afternoon when I finally told a coworker a small detail of my plans. This was done in order to see who I need to talk to in order to either take an extended leave or finally begin the quitting process. Maybe this should have happened earlier, but I think now is a good time to finally start this process, as a best case scenario could have me rolling off by the end of July, which would just squeeze in to the end of my planned timeline. I fully expect that this word will get through the grapevine within a week or so, which should make for some interesting conversation with my coworkers. Who knows, maybe one of them will be willing to be interviewed...