Totally Unauthorized

A side of the film industry most people never see.

My big fat Thanksgiving hangover

It was the deviled eggs that did me in.

Thursday, I had dinner at a friend’s house. Earlier in the year, we’d decided that since times are tough all over, we’d do a potluck this year – normally my friend does all the cooking and won’t let anyone help, but this year she gave in to peer pressure and just did the turkey while everyone else handled the sides and desserts.

One friend brought deviled eggs. I love deviled eggs – even the garden variety pickle juice/paprika kind. I’d eat them all day, every day were I not so afraid of cholesterol poisoning. I’d have been happy to see any kind of deviled egg on the table, but Ms. Overachiever went all out and did three kinds: Curry deviled eggs, BLT deviled eggs, and Caesar deviled eggs.

Oh. My. God.

I scarfed.  And I drank, since the beaujolais nouveau is out. Then, our hostess brought out the heritage turkey- which I guess means ‘weapons grade tryptophan’ because about five minutes after I shoveled it into my gaping maw (amazing I had room after all those eggs) I needed a nap.

Note to non-Americans: You’ll see a lot of gibberish about Thanksgiving being a holiday about family time and togetherness and all that Currier and Ives misty-eyed nostalgia crap. It’s a PR stunt, so feel free to ignore it. Thanksgiving is about food. And eating as much of it as possible. It’s the one time when outright gluttony is not only excusable, it’s expected.

So we eat. And eat and eat and eat.

Friday I felt like one of those giant Macy’s parade balloons – even rolling out of bed was a supreme effort. I went to the gym and struggled through a rudimentary workout and a pitiful excuse for a swim, but I felt better afterwards.

Shame the feel-good moment was just that. A moment. On the way home from the gym, I stopped into a local cooking store looking for muffin pans, and spied Vacherin cheese, which is extremely tasty and until recently was illegal in the US (or so I thought) but there it was and I couldn’t resist.

Yes, I know what cheese does to me. Sometimes it’s totally worth it.

Saturday I really wanted to go out, but I was busy eating cheese and drinking the rest of the wine – hey, it’s new wine. It doesn’t keep. I have to drink it.

Sunday, in an example of really bad planning, there was a Jonas brothers concert on the same day as the Hollywood Christmas Parade. The annual parade closes many streets in Hollywood and creates a traffic snarl that must be seen to be believed, which, combined with several thousand hysterical tweens running amok in the streets makes for.. well, I’m not sure but I’m glad I didn’t have to drive.

I walked around and took some photos and chatted with some of the really nice folks who were participating in the parade, and then dragged my cheese-bloated carcass home.

Total weight gain for my holiday weekend bacchanal (with optional pig-out package): 2.5 lbs.

Could have been worse.

I’m eating extra healthy this week and going to the gym every day to work off those damn eggs.

Mmm… deviled eggs… I wish I had some right now.

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

Yay! Money!

After today’s particularly grueling bike ride (fighting what felt like a 15 knot headwind may be good exercise, but it’s exhausting. I only got in half my normal ride before I gave up and headed for home. Of course the wind shifted while I was contemplating packing it in so I had what felt like a 15 knot cross breeze all the way home. Nice. When I complained to a friend, he informed me it was proof that God hates me. You know, I’ve always suspected as much) I came home to find an unemployment check! Hooray!

I did the best happy dance I could manage on my sore legs, hopped back on my bike and struggled over to the bank so I could deposit the check (and get some cash for laundry and the farmer’s market on Sunday), and when I got home my legs felt like.. well, like I just biked across Hollywood while fighting a wind. Twice.

I’m hopeful that work will come soon, though – I’m starting to see more and more art department folks driving around in 10 ton trucks, which is a good sign. Those guys are back to work a few weeks before we are, so hopefully I’ll be working again before I go completely insane.

Yesterday I was so optimistic that I dumped my work bag, sorted out the stuff that I actually use, threw away the flotsam (lot passes, commissary receipts, half-finished crossword puzzles, band-aids, old call sheets, candy bar wrappers, broken bits of old headsets that no longer work), and then took the bag outside and hosed it down, so I can now find things and the inside doesn’t smell like socks anymore. Sweet.

Then, I decided it was as good a time as any to crack open my last bottle of the wine I brought back from France (you have to celebrate the small victories, too) – the wine that I schlepped across a medium-sized country, carefully wrapped in a sweater, hid in my suitcase, denied the existence of to a customs agent (“why no, I don’t have any alcohol or food in my suitcase. That salami smell is your imagination”), and saved for just the moment I thought I’d really like it…

Was corked. What really sucks is this was the ‘good’ bottle. Oh, well. Just one more excuse to go back someday, right?

I’m going to smear myself with whatever sore muscle rub I can reach, hobble to the couch and watch whatever movie happens to be in the DVD player.

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

Fine, I’ll look on the damn bright side.

Although I don’t know how much of this list is optimism and how much is schadenfreude, but sometimes you just have to take what you can get.

Especially from me.

Here ya go:

1) At least I don’t live in the Western San Fernando Valley – if you think I’m whining about the heat now

2) At least I’m not a “pro-family” US Senator with a horrible voting record on gay rights who got popped (pun intended) for hitting on a male cop in an airport restroom (insert derisive snicker). Now there’s a guy with problems.

3) The cat has only thrown up one hairball this week. This is a vast improvement over last week, when she threw up about ten thousand hairballs and kindly left most of them right where I’d step in them during night-time trips to the loo.

4) The maintenance guy has switched from Eddie Money to the Eagles. I don’t really care for the Eagles much, but it’s a change and I have to take what I can get, right?

4) I’m working Friday, but it’s on a stage that’s air-conditioned to the point of qualifying as a meat locker with a crew of folks who, if I start acting bitchy, will just throw something at me and not take it personally. Yay!

5) The MRI for the right knee came back, and besides a bit of fluid, everything is normal. No torn anything, no weird tumors.

And, just for the record, I don’t hate France – I love France. Honestly, I can take or leave Paris, but the south of France is where I really fell in love with the country and the people (who were wonderful everywhere I went, and very patient with my atrocious French), even though every time I go there I gain about three metric tons from eating all the delicious food and drinking gallons of the local vin ordinaire.

Whenever I complain about the excess pounds, whoever I’m talking to gives that dismissive hand wave that only the French can do really well and says “Oh, there is always time to diet later. Here, have another croissant”.

Why, merci. Don’t mind if I do.

Stupid France and their stupid wonderful food and stupid delicious wine and cheese (which is so totally worth eating) and nice people and beautiful light and strong coffee.

Mmmm.. France. I need to go there right now.
But I can’t go to France any time soon because today I lashed out with Mr. Debit Card and bought a Nikon D40.

I blame Nezza for this.

Originally, I had only thought of buying the D80, which is WAY outside my price range, so I’d just looked at them, sighed wistfully and hoped that the DSLR fairies would someday leave one under my pillow if I were very, very good indeed, and moved on. Then, when Nezza mentioned a D40, I looked at it and thought it wasn’t so bad, so when I went by Samy’s Camera today to buy film for my ancient SLR, I saw the sale price on the D40 and before I knew it, I was walking out the door with one.

I hope you’re happy, Nezza.

Now I have a camera but I can’t make an impulse ticket purchase to Paris, where I’d jump on the train and go somewhere with fatty food and stunning beaches and cheap wine and fabulously attractive locals whom I’d probably ignore completely due to my being too busy stuffing my face.

Who am I kidding… Once I factor in the lost work, that would cost about a bazillion times more than a camera.

Unfortunately, the camera doesn’t use normal batteries, so I couldn’t just take it out of the box and start shooting (of course, there was a really awesome couch on the way home), but once it gets charged I’m going to try it out.

And, of course, if I don’t like it I’m going to muster all of my imaginary PMS anger and return it.

Filed under: camera, couches, life in LA, Nikon, Non-Work, Off-Topic, overspending, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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