This weekend was Cinegear – the annual grip, electric and camera cluster fuck. This year’s show was at the Veteran’s Administration in Westwood, so at least it wasn’t boiling hot like it would have been had we been in the Valley.
There weren’t as many vendors, and the ones that were there didn’t have last year’s lavish displays, but I got to see a lot of friends, catch up, and find out when everyone’s going to start working again.
My Coolest Booth Award went to one of the music libraries who had an Elvis performing:
He gave me a scarf and a kiss on the cheek.
That made my week – I love me some Elvis, even if it’s really a guy named Steve in a wig. Actually, as Elvii go, Steve was a really good one, so I’ll recommend him should you find yourself in the situation of needing an Elvis for, you know, whatever. He doesn’t have a website, but email me and I’ll give you his manager’s phone number.
Before I hit the show, I went to see Who Needs Sleep – Haskell Wexler’s excellent documentary on the effects of long hours on film industry workers and what folks are trying to do about it. In the movie, Wexler interviews the surviving family of two crew members who (several years apart) worked 20+ hour days, fell asleep at the wheel on the way home from work and died (one was a camera assistant named Brent Hershman whose death spearheaded a lamentably short-lived attempt to reduce working hours in the film and television industries).
If it comes to a theater near you, I highly recommend it. Those of you who have read this blog for any length of time know some of the hours I can work and have been able to see for yourselves what happens to my brain (“Can’t… Post… Passing… Out…”).
What you probably don’t know (unless you’ve known me personally for a very long time) is that some years ago, on my way home from our location in Palmdale (a bedroom community of Los Angeles that’s about an hour’s drive one way if there’s no traffic) I fell asleep at the wheel after a 19 hour day. I got all comfy in my seat and bored by whatever was on “Morning Edition”, dozed off gently and woke up not understanding why my car was facing into oncoming traffic on Interstate 5.
The LA-based crew had not been offered hotel rooms.
Thank the deity of your choice that the only thing I fucked up were the trousers I happened to be wearing at the time. Oh, and don’t bother asking me how I managed to make the car do a 180-degree turn without flipping it over. I was, after all, sound asleep at the time.
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Couch of the day: