Totally Unauthorized

A side of the film industry most people never see.

Don’t they make bird diapers?

One of the things people forget about Los Angeles is that the city’s older than it seems – parts of the city date to before the Civil War, and that’s where we were working yesterday – in a very old warehouse east of downtown that used to be a railroad depot back in the days when railroads were still relevant in urban areas.

The thing about old warehouses is that they’re not very clean. 120 years of pigeons setting up housekeeping results in, well, stuff that one’s not really supposed to breathe, and some production companies are still really reluctant to provide masks (and in this case, restrooms with running water – the logic being that we could pee and that should have been enough). For some reason, the pigeons like to congregate on interior windowsills right over lighting equipment, so at the end of the day all our stuff had been, um, christened. Normally, I’d try to clean it off before sending the stuff back to the rental house, but I could feel myself losing IQ points every minute I was in there – besides, I really had to pee.

We also didn’t have enough people, due to productions’s desire to keep manpower costs down – this meant that we had to work for twice as long, which meant that the labor costs were twice as much due to the overtime, and at the end of the job, I got my ass handed to me by the UPM due to my inability to defy the laws of physics and make the guys work faster than the speed of light.

Oh, well. At least I got some really awesome photos:

Abandoned coffee pot

Skyline from the east

Downtown warehouse

We’re back tomorrow, working in something called the “oil pits”. Sounds oily and possibly smelly. My boss suggested calling in dehydrated, but I’m a whore for a potential photo op. I just have to remember to bring my respirator.

Filed under: Photos, Work

6 Responses

  1. Meg says:

    Great pics! I love the skyline framed by the old windows.

  2. MadMichael says:

    Um, yes, they do, in fact, make bird diapers:

    [By the way, I enjoy your blog very much. I have worked 30 years part-time for IATSE Local 190, Wichita, KS. Mostly theatrical road shows and concerts, makes a great change-of-pace from my day job as a computer programmer.]

  3. Fidelitas says:

    Actually, there ARE diapers for birds:

    Oops, I may have made a PA’s life a little bit harder there.

  4. I find it completely insane that in this day and age they cannot provide you with proper facilities. That’s just a load of BS.

    I will say, though, that getting that shot of the sky may have made it worth it. Gorgeous!

  5. Karen! says:

    I hope that coffee pot wasn’t where you were expected to pee!

  6. brook says:

    Love the skyline picture.

    The bird population and general state of the building reminds me of a shoot in the old ice house in Las Vegas. Just add disintegrating concrete staircases with no handrails and stir.
    Ahhh….our ‘glamourous’ careers, eh?

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