Totally Unauthorized

A side of the film industry most people never see.

Saved by the call!

This afternoon, as I was cleaning the bathroom and wondering if I could somehow turn the power of PMS into a paycheck, a friend called and asked if I wanted to do a little data entry.

“It’ll be three or four hours of work and he’ll pay you $20.”

That’s a bit low for data entry, but it’s great if I want to distract myself from worrying about the fact that the “slow” season is approaching and what I’ve got in my savings account wouldn’t buy dinner at one of LA’s finer celebrity-infested restaurants.

“Great! I’ll have him email you!”

I suppose I should mention that, back in the days when the interwebz was still on dial-up and named AOL, I hurt my back (fell off a lift gate) and had to take a temp job which involved operating a ten-key. I sat at that fucking thing for eight of the most miserable months of my life. I’ve never been happier than the day I was well enough to quit and run back to the circus.

I’m still pretty fast on said ten-key, especially when I’m being paid a flat rate.

I figured I could finish the job in a couple of hours and then go for a bike ride to celebrate being underpaid to do menial labor (oh… Wait).

Imagine my surprise when I got a Google document which involved cutting and pasting URLs from websites. About 20,000 URLs, which I would have had to find myself (example: “Type the word Sears in field one and then paste the URL for Sears into field two”).

Holy shit. Even with one of those decommissioned space agency supercomputers (which I hear one can buy on Craig’s List), 1,000 trained monkeys and a shitload of cocaine, I doubted this was doable in less than a week.

When I called to  try to explain that this was way more complicated than four hours and $20, the response I got was “well, I wanted it by tomorrow morning, but do you need all day?”

Luckily, just at that moment, I got a call to work. Tomorrow.

Sweet.

So, even though I’ll only get 8 hours, the cut-and-paste nightmare will fall in someone else’s lap.

Life is good.

Filed under: Non-Work, Work, , , , , , , , , ,

I never seem to learn

I have a birthday coming up and I’ve decided that the perfect gift for me (in case you’re shopping) is a Bad Idea Monkey.

Basically, I need a monkey to sit on my shoulder and hit me over the head with a blunt instrument whenever I have a really bad idea – which, this past weekend, occurred about every 10 minutes.

Friday: The news predicted a gradual warm-up over the weekend, so I figured it would be an excellent day to ride my bike out to Santa Monica so I could go to the ‘good’ gym (it’s not all that great, it just has a lower Band-Aid (TM) to pool water ratio than does the gym that’s close to my house). Needless to say, the warm-up was not, in fact, gradual and I got caught by the heat on the ride home. At one point I figured it was a great idea to find a bus and get on it as I was relatively certain I could feel my brain swelling (or shrinking, depending on your viewpoint), and sat in the shade for a few minutes while I failed to find any spare change anywhere on my person. I guess it was a win, though because I did find some electrolyte tablets which kept me conscious until I got home.

Saturday: I figured that since the weather had officially been set to ‘broil’, I needed some straw to use as mulch for my garden to keep the soil from turning into a hard dry wasteland (plants, I’m told, do not like this). Of course, the place to get straw is a feed store, and the feed stores in Los Angeles are all located in the hottest parts of the city, so I drove north until the air felt like a furnace, parked in a vast wasteland of blacktop, and then single-handedly wrestled two bales of straw into the cargo area of my carpeted SUV. Also of course, I hadn’t thought about any type of carpet/straw barrier method so the bales immediately started shedding straw bits all over the inside of my car. Since my air conditioning works but using it makes my fuel economy go from moderately bad to laughable, I stupidly got on the freeway with two bales of straw in the back and all the windows down. I’m still picking bits of straw out of my hair.

Bad Idea Monkey, where are you?

Sunday: I got up early to go throw the straw into the garden, but then realized it was the weekly farmer’s market so I went there first. Market starts at 8:30, I got home around 9:45 and didn’t get to the garden until after 10 am. Then, I had to wrestle two bales of straw out of the back of the truck and into a wheelbarrow (in case you were wondering, a bale of straw is much longer and wider than a wheelbarrow and as such must be placed in the wheelbarrow on the narrow side, making the wheelbarrow top and front heavy) and then push precariously overloaded wheelbarrow up a hill to the actual garden.

Once I got the straw there I had to cut the bales, break it (mostly) out of the flakes and lay it down. Then I had to pull out yet another tomato that got the ick, water, and then go and clean the three inches of straw leavings out of the back of the truck. All this in 100+ degree heat. I sweated off my sunblock and got burned, so of course I then went to an LAist barbecue where I continued to fry until it finally cooled off about 8 pm. My back’s now starting to itch and I’m betting it’s going to start peeling while I’m at work.

Wow. I really need that monkey.

I’ll be on an air conditioned stage tomorrow which is good, and the weather’s supposed to be 20 degrees cooler.

Filed under: Non-Work, , , , , ,

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