Before the lemon-yellow school bus bearing the blue C-SPAN logo arrived at Millikan Middle School in Van Nuys, eighth-grader Lupe Romo hadn't even heard of the Cable Satellite Public Affairs Network, let alone watched it.
But after touring the 45-foot-long television studio on wheels and seeing the three television cameras, the eight-channel audio board, the fax machine, the studio lights and the two laser disc players, Lupe delivered a verdict.
"It's cool," she said.
Students at Millikan and Grant High School in Van Nuys visited the bus on Tuesday.
As C-SPAN representative David Almacy showed footage of a Senate debate to a dozen students, he explained the channel's mission: to provide gavel-to-gavel, balanced coverage of politics without commentary.
But, Almacy acknowledged, "It's not the most interesting thing on TV."
By the end of her 30-minute tour, Lupe wasn't ready to abandon MTV, but admitted that "I might switch to C-SPAN a couple of times now."