How I Found Metta World Peace on the Hill

Reps. Grace F. Napolitano, left, and Tim Ryan, far right, talk with former NFL player Keith Mitchell and NBA player Metta World Peace on the House steps. The athletes and other mental-health advocates were on the Hill to bring attention to National Children's Mental Health Awareness Day. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

I was in the Capitol on Wednesday, making my way to the House side for an event. I decided to walk across the East Front — just in case I ran into something. It would have been just as easy to walk inside, but you never know what you're going to find outside. There was a big group gathered on House steps with members of Congress talking and taking pictures. I saw some stylish women and I thought they might be famous, so I stopped to inquire. They weren't, but I was told that there were former pro athletes in the group so I knew that would make a picture if I could cut though the people milling about, get to the principles and line it up.  

I honed in on Metta World Peace because he was the most famous of the bunch and I knew if I made a good frame, he would be in it. And I knew I needed him with a member. I shot about 30 frames of him in various stages of conversation, but none worked because the people around him made it messy.  

He and another athlete, Keith Mitchell (I had to ask him who he was — hey, they wear helmets in the NFL) finally drifted to where the background was clean and the Dome was in sight, and they were talking to members. I realized that combination was the best I was going to get, so I fired off another round of frames and got some nice interaction with everyone clearly visible. The guy with the camera jumped in for a few seconds and initially annoyed me, but I think it's fine because he isn't blocking anything and also helps add to the energy of the scene.