Totally Unauthorized

A side of the film industry most people never see.

Happy New Year

As is normal for the first part of January, I’m unemployed. Even in busy years, January just doesn’t see that much action.

Although this normally worries me (even though it’s been happening for years), I guess it’s not a terrible thing as this week I seem to have picked up some unholy cough from hell. I’m talking bent double with spasms in my lungs, wheezing like an asthmatic pug.

It could be that it was 40 degrees last week and 80 degrees this week, or it could be the 8 percent humidity, or it could be the sudden lack of cat hair in my lungs.

Or, I could have caught the plague when I was flying across the country on the screaming baby express.

Who knows?

I’m sure I don’t have the flu, since I haven’t got body aches or a fever, but whatever it is has moved into my lungs and is picking out wallpaper. Or something.

I’m just glad it’s relatively warm here. According to my sister, the high at her place tomorrow is supposed to be 2 degrees (F).

I love you, California.

I do have one day of work this week, but I’ll be up in a condor so hopefully no one will hear me wheeze.

Filed under: cranky, life in LA, mishaps, Non-Work, , , , , , ,

A Contagious Christmas

This has been the busiest December I’ve had in a long time. I worked almost every day, which was great, and thought that I’d managed to avoid the Holiday Death Plague currently being passed around here in Los Angeles.

Said plague featured a combination of the worst head cold one could possibly imagine and a tubercular cough that, like house guests, just won’t go the fuck away.

I was feeling pretty smug – I had three days of work the week before Christmas, no days of sickness, and one day off before I had to get on a plane to go visit the family and overeat.

Wednesday promised to be great – due to the slowest director in the world, we were going to get a hefty check, production were buying lunch, and holiday cookies were plentiful.

Mid-morning, one of our extras started to cough. I didn’t think much about it – after all I’d not gotten sick yet, which must have meant I was immune to the Holiday Death Plague. Throughout the day, her cough got worse and worse, and by mid-afternoon almost 20 people on set (including me) were starting to cough.

Refusing to believe that I was getting sick, I attributed it to dust from when I had to go up into the perms to drop out some power for a new set, but as I was driving home I finally had to admit to myself that the Death Plague had, in fact, won.

So, I spent the holiday sniffling, hacking and wheezing while stuffing my face full of fatty food and sweets. The day before I was to leave, my sister started coughing.

Whoops.

As of now, the head cold portion of the program is gone, but the cough is still lingering and frightening anyone who comes anywhere near me. I hope it’s gone before the middle of next week, which is when I have to work.

Filed under: studio lots, Work, , , , , , , , , ,

After a long weekend, more rain.

This holiday weekend was especially good to me since the antibiotics finally got the better of the upper respiratory infection and I managed to walk three steps without breaking into the horrible rasping cough (although I have to admit it was fun watching people scatter like cockroaches the second I started. One guy even got up and moved to a different seat in the movie theater despite my assuring him in between wheezes that it wasn’t contagious) I’ve had for what feels like forever.

Thankfully, it’s mostly gone now. I even managed to go for a bike ride Sunday and only had one coughing fit right after I accidentally inhaled a stray bug (that’ll teach it to mind it’s own business).

Good thing I got the ride in, too.  It’s supposed to rain for the rest of the week, which of course means the entire city has descended into a panic about wet Ugg boots and the local news is doing a feature about the horsemen spotted running across the sky somewhere in the San Fernando Valley. Or something.

In other happy news, I finally got my Axium tax paperwork – it was sent out by Avalon in an envelope from PAV (both Axium subsidiaries – guess they’re using up the office supplies that weren’t looted).

Which brings me to this years “How many W2 forms do you have?” contest:

W2 forms

The person with the most forms wins the can of champagne I managed to weasel out of drinking!

I have 17 this year, but I don’t count, of course.

Filed under: life in LA, Photos, , , , , , , ,

Almost-Friday photo

I’m having to stay up a bit later than usual due to my having a later call time tomorrow (which means, of course, that we won’t wrap until later – like early Saturday morning), so here’s a photo from Wednesday’s job:

Air tastes better when you can see it.

As I’d predicted, it was hotter than hell. At lunch, when I stepped out of the air conditioned stage (which was a bit warm – they turn off the air conditioning between takes, and sometimes the PAs forget to turn it back on), it felt like, well, it felt hot – and it didn’t help when they hauled out that fucking smoke machine and ‘hazed’ the room. I know that stuff’s supposed to be mostly harmless, but it always gives me a sore throat and a cough.

Luckily, I was working with a really wonderful group of folks so I had a good time – but not so much of a good time that I didn’t bail when I got called to work Friday and Saturday on a job that pays more.

Filed under: hazardous, Photos, Work, , , , , , , , ,

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