Totally Unauthorized

A side of the film industry most people never see.

Half a weekend

Last week, we had a 6 day week, as we had to re-shoot the pilot episode of this show. Don’t ask why, I don’t know.

Although we were expecting the worst, day 6 turned out to be not so bad (only 10.5 hours), as the director came in very prepared and burned through the stuff.

I was home before midnight, which I hadn’t expected.

The advantage of four cameras is that it’s possible to shoot 26 pages in a day; something that’s completely out of reach for single camera shows (a misnomer, since most single camera shows use two cameras).

This show is 99.9 percent wonderful.

I really like the rest of the crew, the hours are easy, it’s close to the house and I’m really happy to be here.

The main problem I’m having is craft service.

Not the person – she’s a very nice lady who is exceptionally good at her job, but she doesn’t put out the healthiest stuff. She’s trying to make an entire crew of overgrown children happy, so she puts out comfort food.

Pasta, meatballs, chicken fingers, sliders, bacon wrapped bacon, weenie tots, onion rings, pastrami, etc..

Which is fine, as most people like that stuff and won’t complain.

Hell, I like that sort of stuff, but if I spend the next 6 weeks eating deep-fried whatsits three times a day my arteries (and my waistline) are going to explode.

Simply not eating for 12 hours isn’t an option, so I need to figure out a way to bring my own snacks without offending her.

It would be easy if we had a dorm fridge in our gold room, but we don’t.

If I bring food I have to put it in her fridge, so it’s not like I can sneak it past her.

Vegan? Gluten free? Nut allergy? Sanctimonious uber-organic locavore? These are all plausible, but I think I’m just going to tell her that I’m a super picky eater with an extremely sensitive stomach and this way is going to be easier for both of us.

Hopefully, she’ll understand and not poison my bagged lunch.

 

Filed under: Work, , , , , ,

Too busy for my fridge

Just let me start this out by stating how grateful I am to be working.

The only problem with working is the fridge and its contents.

Right before I got this job, I’d purchased some food.

I was thinking about my budget,  so I  didn’t go too crazy. Veggies, mostly, but also some chicken and assorted toppings. I usually have a bag of brown rice in the cabinet, and I’ll cook a batch as needed about twice a week.

I thought I was set.

Then, I proceeded to spend 12 hours a day on set with craft service and catering.

So today, when I opened the fridge for the first time in.. I don’t know, I was greeted to a big bunch of wilted and moldy garbage, with accompanying odor.

Awesome.

Even the mustard was moldy. How can that even happen?

Since the fridge was empty after I pitched everything, I took the time to scrub it out while I was muttering angrily about wasting food.

I’ve got one more week and then I’ll re-stock with  a shiny clean fridge. Maybe. Hopefully there will still be enough work to justify not buying groceries.

Filed under: overspending, Work, , , , , , ,

And the heat’s on

For the past couple of weeks, it’s been cool and overcast in LA, which is always something I enjoy knowing that once it really gets hot I’m going to broil straight through until Thanksgiving.

Each day that I’m not sweating profusely is a meteorological special happy place.

Since I haven’t worked so far this week, I’ve been out on the bike every day enjoying the mist and the cool air (and not using overpriced gasoline, which is always good).

Well, that’s going away now. The cool days are becoming fewer, the hot days are becoming more frequent and the news is predicting record heat over the weekend (and issuing warnings about heat stroke and general sweatiness). It’s easily 20 degrees warmer today than it was yesterday and going to get even hotter, which I’m predicting my tomatoes will not like one little bit.

I’ve already lost two to my garden’s soil borne tomato wilt (also known as “creeping crud”, “icky” and “goddammit”) – one of the two Marvel Stripe plants I had and sadly, my only Jetsetter (the perfect food porn tomato – perfectly round, perfectly red, perfectly tomato-y, perfectly hard to find. Oh, well. Maybe next year), and I’m desperately hoping the extreme temperature shift won’t finish off the rest of them.

I’m also not sure if I should call the diet a success or failure so far. I’ve only lost 5 lbs (target was 10), but my body fat percentage has gone from 26% to 22%.

I don’t think that muscle weight is any better for my knees than fat weight, so I may have to re-think my strategy of hell-bent weightlifting until I can grate cheese on my abs.

Guess I’ll sweat some of it off this weekend by just going outside.  Although if bits of Southern California keep catching fire I may have to stay indoors.

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

Why yes, I am an asshole. Thanks for noticing.

In a moment of spectacularly bad planning, I have a 5 pm call today (I’m the ‘8 hour guy’ who’s just coming in to help wrap), and I have no idea what time I’ll have to be at work tomorrow morning. If it’s 7 am, I’m totally screwed – rules about turnaround only apply when one is on the same show from day to day.

So I decided to spend the day running errands, and started out with a stop for coffee. While walking back to my car, an Indian (sub-continent, not North American) guy – complete with beads, turban, sandals and nearly incomprehensible accent – stopped me and said “You look happy on the outside, but you’re disturbed inside. You have too many thoughts. Let me see your right palm.”

Then he grabbed my hand and started examining it.

At this point, I figured I was being punked (or New-Age robbed) so I started frantically looking around for either a camera crew or Officer Friendly.

Personally, I think fortune-telling is bunk (I see claims of ‘seeing the future’ as a grave misunderstanding about the nature of time), but you can’t actually tell these people that, now can you?

I must have looked wary because he continued (still clutching my hand) more earnestly, “You have a very long life-line and will live a long time with happy life and successful. You will have three lucky news in December. There are two men who love you – one loves you too much and the other is bullshit but you won’t know it for some time.”

No, I think I can see the source of the bullshit just fine, but thanks.

“Now, if you will pay me $40, you will have happy life.”

I stared at his beads for a moment, idly wondering if they ever got caught in his chest hair and asked “Does that mean that I’m not going to have a happy life if I don’t pay you $40? ‘Cause I got some bad news for you, my friend.”

“Well how much do you have?”

“Nothing. I will pay you nothing. I resent being hustled.”

“Asshole.”

Awesome. I’m still going to live a long life, though. Everyone on both sides of my family has lived past 90 (except the ones that had accidents and died young, but for genetics purposes, they don’t count), so unless the asbestos exposure gets me first I’ve got every reasonable expectation of living far, far beyond my usefulness.

So there.

Later, as I was sitting in the laundromat waiting for the dryers to finish, a guy wearing a T-shirt expressing his patriotic disdain for anyone of Middle-Eastern ancestry, wandered in and demanded I give him money. “My phone ran out of minutes,” he said, shaking his pink Razr at me for emphasis. “I need ten bucks. Please, sir.”

Sir? You need to work on your panhandling skills, kid. Scoot.”

“Asshole!”

Actually, I was more of an asshole than he’d imagined. A few minutes later, after I watched him buy some meth from the tranny hooker who hangs out in front of the coffee shop (I guess he got someone to give him some money after all), I called the cops and gave them a very detailed description of him, his meth, and his t shirt.

My laundry done, I headed back home – only to arrive right as the school across the street was letting out and all the parking was being taken up by waiting parents.

Except one space, which I slipped into ahead of the lady who was trying to make an illegal U turn in her minivan despite the heavy traffic and nearby police cruiser.

“Hey!” she yelled out her window as I got out of the car and started to unload my laundry “I want that space!”

“I want one of those really ripped Calvin Klein models and a big tub of butter, but…” I trailed off with a gesture intended to convey my good-natured disappointment at the lack of condiment-covered male models roaming the streets of American cities.

Actually, I’m on a diet, so perhaps I should want a really ripped Calvin Klein model and a big tub of I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter.

She glared at me for a moment and then yelled “Asshole!” before driving off.

Wow. Three times in one day and I’m not even wearing a costume.

Do I get a prize for that?

Oh, and happy Halloween.

Filed under: humor, life in LA, Los Angeles, Non-Work, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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