Totally Unauthorized

A side of the film industry most people never see.

Hop ‘n Shop

I can’t put any weight on my foot for a few  days while my racehorse injury heals (all I need is a blanket of roses and a bucket of oats), so when I was struck by one of my Great Ideas (TM), and needed to do some shopping, out came the crutches.
Jesus, I’d forgotten what an ordeal it is to move around on those things. They should have a ‘dodge crowds of clueless shoppers while doing the three-legged hustle back to the car to beat the two hour parking cut off’ machine at the gym. I guarantee the best workout ever.

Said great idea revolved around the idea that the movie made from Julie Powell’s blog, The Julie/Julia project, is being released next week. I loved her blog, and am thrilled that she’s done so well.

So why not cook a dish from Julia’s book (and blog about the ensuing disaster) to celebrate a something really great happening to a great blogger?

Only problem is that I don’t have a copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking.  I’ve never had one. My hand-me-down cookbooks have all been from older female relatives who are good cooks, but not French cooks. I’ve never bothered to buy it because quite frankly Julia’s cookbooks scare the bejesus out of me.  I can boil the hell out of some pasta, but give me a five page long recipe full of italics and I break out into a cold sweat and must console myself with the nearest martini.

I have my mother’s old Larousse Gastronomique, but it’s not really a cookbook so much as it is bookcase decoration and browsing material for when one’s having that pre-dinner cocktail.  For women of my mother’s era and social circle, French pretense was far, far more important than French cooking skills when it came to snaring a husband (or two, in Mom’s case, but that’s another story).

While Julia’s  book can be had new for a small fortune, the used stores are all completely sold out (and anything ordered from Amazon won’t get here in time), of course. Guess I’m not the only one who had the idea.  I gave up and collapsed in a heap after I wore off my newly re-grown armpit skin.

However, since I can’t be trusted in any retail establishment which stocks old cookbooks (I really like the pre 1960 books – it’s a rare apolitical window into a long-lost world), the day wasn’t a total loss.  I came home with a 1935 edition of Recipes of All  Nations (featuring dishes from countries which haven’t existed in my lifetime) and a 1965 Going Wild in the Kitchen featuring several different methods for cooking woodchuck.  Somebody fetch me a .22 rifle and a set of hiking crutches and dinner’s on me.

Total cost for both books was less than a used Mastering the Art of French Cooking (fair condition, some burns on cover) from Amazon.

Oh, well. Happy movie release day, Julie.  I’ll just drink to your well-deserved success with some French wine and something called Creamed Puffballs* instead.

Okay, maybe just the wine.

*Page 172, Going Wild in the Kitchen;  Make a rich cream sauce, adding a little sherry. Add sauteed puffballs**. Serve on toast.

**What the hell is a puffball, anyways?***

***Never mind. According to Google,  it’s a yellowish fungus which, when dried and stored in powder form, can staunch bleeding and spontaneously explode.  Hopefully not at the same time.

Filed under: humor, Non-Work

Wait, it’s a what, now?

So much for that ‘homestretch’ idea.

Last week, in a fit of frustration at the slow speed of my recovery, the doctor shot my foot full of cortisone, which helped a little but didn’t completely get rid of the pain.

Today, I went in expecting to get another heavy sigh followed by a shot,  but instead was told that I’ve got Sesamoiditis, which I’d been mistaking for garden variety surgery-related lingering pain.

It’s especially bad since the treatment for the various types of -itis is rest, ice and physical therapy, and I’ve used up all my physical therapy sessions (16 per year, buddy. You better heal fast).

The nice folks at the motion picture health plan are notorious for refusing requests for PT extensions – which means I have to work something out because I’d love to get this crap healed so I can get the fuck back to work. Keep your fingers crossed that they’ll take pity on me and grant the extension, as paying out of pocket for physical therapy sessions is completely out of the question.  I can easily afford the ice, though.

At least I’ve got an answer now, although it’s not the one I wanted.  What I really wanted was an answer which would have resulted in my returning to work by the end of the week.  As I sit here festering in my recliner, best boys all over town are forgetting that I exist and my name drops lower and lower on the list of people who are available to come in and work. Needless to say, I am not happy at the moment.

On a completely unrelated note, the Blogger Prom was a blast.  Plates of high-fat munchies, copious amounts of free booze (I exercised a modicum of uncharacteristic restraint and only had two glasses of wine all night), good fun and good company. I did end up jumping in the swimming pool, and managed to swim for about 10 minutes before being politely asked to get out by a very worried looking security guard.

Although the dress and other accessories can be disposed of at the local thrift shops from whence they came, I do now have a frosted mullet rocker wig that no one will take. If you want it, let me know.

It’s truly horrible, but in a good way and I’d hate to just pitch in in the trash if there’s someone out there who can put it to some sort of evil use.

Filed under: life in LA, Non-Work

So it’s 500 degrees and I’m wearing a wig.

Since my actual prom (oh, so long ago) sucked ass (mainly because I was too cool/bound up in my teenage angst/busy caving in to resisting peer pressure to enjoy it), I thought Caroline on Crack’s idea for a Blogger Prom was a stroke of genius. Why not a prom redux when everyone’s actually going to have fun?

Since the ‘prom’ is 80’s themed and I’ve got a haircut for the new millennium, I’ve decided to wear a wig. Not just any wig, but a horrifying frosted mullet rocker wig:

scuse me while i fluff my hair

Yikes! It’s even more horrible on my head. Plus, it’s hot as hell, which I kind of knew already after years of listening to actors bitch about it, but I wasn’t prepared for just how hot, though. It’s like wearing a watch cap. Damn.

It does fit in with the night’s theme though, and an added plus is that I won’t have to worry about photos. I normally don’t let anyone take my picture, but an entire party full of photo-whore (and I mean that in the best possible way) bloggers and free booze is a disaster waiting to happen, but with said wig, three pounds of makeup and cheap plastic Wayfarer knockoffs I should be fine.

I’ll probably spend at least half the night sitting down because my foot still hurts if I stand on it too long, but they’ve got WiFi (of course) at the party so I won’t look too pathetic.

I’m also bringing my swimsuit and ‘accidentally’ falling in the pool at the end of the night, which should ring the death knell for the wig. And the party, maybe.

For the record, my actual hair in the late 80’s was just about this bad.  I had the fountain of Aqua-Net reinforced perm that erupted from my right ear and swept over the side of my head and down the opposite shoulder.  I still cringe when I see the photos.

Filed under: Uncategorized

The more time I have, the less I find.

When I’m busy, I get an immense amount of stuff done.  I get up at the crack of dawn, hit the gym, return phone calls on the way to work, squeeze paperwork in between lighting set-ups, pay my bills on time (usually), keep the garden watered and the cat happy (as cats go) and still manage to squeeze in some internet time.

Now, that I have nothing on the schedule I just can’t seem to find any time to do anything – the day just slips away from me leaving me scratching my head around 7 pm, wondering what the hell just happened.

Part of the problem is that the foot still hurts a lot in the evenings – it feels fine in the morning, but after even a couple of hours of walking on it the low-level (no pun intended) aching comes roaring back and I can’t think.  Despite my best intentions, all I can do is sit on the couch and pretend to read, although I seem to mostly re-read the same thing 15 times and then give up and turn on the TV.

The foot’s not healing as quickly as the doctor would like and at my last appointment he expressed a desire for me to get back to work – I couldn’t agree more.  I think he thinks that I’m goldbricking and trying to extend disability, but nothing could be further from the truth.

I desperately want to get back to work, but unfortunately for me there’s no ‘light duty’ distinction in my line of work – I can either do the job or I can’t, and until I can stay on my feet for 10 hours and walk for most of that time (which I currently can’t), I’m not able to work.

The physical therapist keeps trying to reassure me that it’s all going to be okay, which just makes me want to kick him.

With the good foot, of course.

On a lighter note, I so very rarely find something that actually makes me laugh out loud. Behold, the camper shell fail:

Camper shell fail.

Happy Friday!

Filed under: Non-Work

Workout time

Now that the foot’s feeling better (still not 100%, but much better, although it’s very sore today), I’ve been spending lots of time in the gym attempting to lose the weight I gained while flat on my back.
Now that I’m officially middle aged, this isn’t as easy as I’d like it to be, especially since I can remember the days when just laying off the martinis would take care of any bulge issues  – now,  after countless hours of workout, I’m still about the same weight as I was two weeks ago, only now I’m really tired. And sore.
So for the holiday, I won’t be going to any parties – I’ll be at the gym, followed by my annual Independence Day cowering in the house as the neighbors shoot guns into the air. I really wanted to go to Northern California, but disability just doesn’t pay enough for gas, food and lodging. Maybe later in the summer.

The one bright spot is that it’s nectarine season. Nectarines are one of the things that cause me to lose all vestiges of self-control – I don’t mean those hard flavorless things that one purchases at the supermarket, either. I mean the farmer’s market ripe sweet perfect fruit which is only available for a few weeks and, of course, doesn’t taste good when it’s canned or turned into preserves.

I’ve probably eaten 10 pounds of them in the past two weeks. Which, now that I think about it, may be causing some of my gym related problems.

Meh. Nectarine season is short and there will be time enough for self-denial later.

Happy Independence Day, everyone!

Filed under: Uncategorized

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