Totally Unauthorized

A side of the film industry most people never see.

Hurry up!

Today, we were shooting a promo about something exercise-related.

I know this since it took place in a gym and all the extras were very, very fit.

Actually, extras is a bit of a loose term here. Turns out, not all the extras were actors. Some of them were just gym rats that had gotten lured into the maelstrom by the promise of getting paid to work out for a few hours. They sure as hell weren’t

Which would be fine, of course, if we weren’t on a very, very tight schedule and shooting in a room with one entrance, 100 people, and 5,000 pounds of equipment, most of which was being carried one way or the other though the door every few seconds.

An added degree of difficulty was the non-actors didn’t really understand the lingo or what was going on with all the non-fit people wearing toolbelts, so they didn’t respond to ‘coming through’, ‘make a hole’, ‘excuse me’, ‘get out of my way’, or ‘I’ll fucking kill you I swear to God’.

I’m normally not that cranky, but when I’m carrying a really hot light I get…upset when I have to have it over my shoulder for longer than absolutely possible.

The ADs spent much of the day yanking people out of doorways and out from in front of our lights.

This particular location had a hard out at noon – which means completely out – gone, no trace, opening for business. No option to pay to extend that. Hard, hard out.

We told them we need about an hour to wrap out and, of course, they kept adding shots until about 18 minutes before 12, and we ended up in a shot that used damn near all of our equipment. Lucky for us the riggers were there to wrap the cable or we never would have made it. As it is, we got out of the building in time, but still had to load the truck, which wasn’t what the location wanted, but we can only do so much so fast.

 

Filed under: hazardous, locations, Work, , , ,

Hooray!

The powers that be finally (after almost two weeks) approved my application and activated my membership, so today was my first day getting use the Sony gym.

I lifted some weights, since we weren’t going to have a particularly strenuous day (then, of course, I had to go up into the perms to drop out cable), and I have to say I really enjoy the gym.

They’re missing a few bits of equipment that the other gym has that I like, but it’s super clean, and they were playing 80s hip-hop on the sound system, which was extra awesome.

The gym I go to – the normal gym – is fairly small and I know everyone, so it’s a friendly place.

I wave and smile at people, ask how they’re doing, chit-chat about workouts, progress, the weather, etc..

People at this gym are less smiley and chatty. Maybe it’s because I went during the lunch rush (we had a 2 pm call time so I got there at 12:30) and maybe folks were just trying to get in that workout on lunch, but they didn’t strike me as a particularly friendly bunch.

One lady, after I’d said hello, started and responded with “Oh, were you talking to me?”

Oops. Guess I’d better cool it with the friendly.

I finished my workout and then stretched on the super awesome weird cage thing that I really wish my gym would buy.

Sadly, it looks like most of the really good classes are at times when I’m going to be working, but I do love being able to work out and then walk five minutes to the stage.

I might regret the expenditure when it’s dead and I’m broke, but right now it’s so worth it.

 

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

It’s resolution time!

No, not mine.

At this stage of my life, I’ve given up all hope of self-improvement and am just aiming for remembering to brush my teeth.

No, no.. it’s that time of year when folks make a resolution to get in shape and descend on the gym like a horde of sweaty, confused locusts.

While I certainly want to encourage people to exercise, this time of year can be unpleasant for those of us who have become accustomed to the less-populated gym of the off months.

I realize it’s not possible for the staff to walk everyone through the basics of gym citizenship, so here’s a few points directed at the resolution crowd:

1. Re-rack your weights. For fuck’s sake – do you think those dumbbells are going to grow eyes and legs and show themselves back to the rack? Of course you don’t. Fucking pick them up and put them back. If I trip over them I’ll tie your shoelaces together while you’re sitting on a bench chatting.

2. Speaking of which, if you’re not actively using something, don’t fucking sit on it. It’s not your private garage fitness room, it’s a space you have to share with several hundred of your new best friends. Normally, I’d say watch the bodybuilders and do what they do, but those bastards plant their asses and proceed to gossip like fishwives, so in this regard, ignore them and keep the long involved conversations to the juice bar or the couches in the lounge area.

3. You might think that eau de mouffette dans un jardin smells divine. You might want to douse yourself with three bottles of it before you work out just to share. Please don’t.  This goes double and triple for the pool and the steam room. Do, however, feel free to liberally apply deodorant. Please, for the love of all that’s fucking holy, liberally apply deodorant.

4. Wipe your sweat off of the equipment. You’re carrying that towel around for a reason – it’s certainly not a fashion statement. If I have to scrub something down before I can use it, I’m going to find you and bill you.

5. The cardio areas and the pool get very, very crowded. Please, if you see people waiting, keep it to a half an hour. I know, I know. No one likes to have to get off the treadmill or out of the pool after only half an hour (personally, I hate it), but remember we’re sharing space here. If you stick it out, the gym will eventually be less crowded and you’ll be able to stay on for the full hour (or even more!)

6. Speaking of the pool, at various times of the day classes will reserve lanes. Although this particular gym has a masters swim program (and we’re pretty mellow), mostly they’re aqua exercise classes populated by sweet little old ladies who will gut you like a trout if you don’t get out of that lane three seconds ago. You’ve been warned.

7. If you don’t know how to use something, ask. One of the trainers will help you, or if you can’t find them, another gym member will be more than happy to walk you through how to properly use the kegelnator.

8. Please be nice to the locker room attendants. They’re very nice ladies (gentlemen on the guys’ side) and have to clean a bathroom all day, every day. Think about that before you scream at them.

9. This particular gym provides towels. It’s a very nice amenity, and we’d like the gym to continue to provide it and not decide it’s too much of a pain in the ass to bother with. So pick them up and place them in the hamper when you’re done with them. They’ll be happy to be with their friends.

10. Gentlemen, if you’re rocking those 70’s style running shorts, please wear an athletic supporter underneath. Sit ups and unsupported junk in tiny shorts is something I can’t unsee no matter how much I drink.

Happy New Year and have a great workout!

Filed under: cranky, humor, life in LA, Non-Work, Off-Topic, , , , , ,

No work, but at least I have the interwebs

Finally, I got the computer working. Hooray! Unemployment doesn’t seem so bad when I can watch stupid human tricks on YouTube. The only minor problem still existing is that I had to get a new keyboard (this machine doesn’t have one of those dedicated keyboard ports and I couldn’t find an adaptor so I had to get a USB keyboard), and it’s just a tad bit smaller than the old one so it’s currently typo city around here.

I’m also currently going to physical therapy three times a week for my shoulder – the left one has been sore for quite some time, and I figured it was because the left side was the weaker one.

Imagine my surprise when the PT informed me that the left side is the stronger side as it’s been doing more of the work – meaning the right side is the weak slacker mooching off the hard work of the other shoulder.

Dammit.

I was also surprised to learn that I’ve got some mild disc compression in my spine, which is really odd because I don’t have any kind of back pain at all. I didn’t ask, but I’m assuming this means that my spine is also a moocher and forcing my shoulder to do even more work.

So I do the exercises (which could make suspects at Gitmo talk), and go to the PT, who advises me to ice and then puts that twitchy electric thing on my shoulder and tells me it’s looking better, which, for some reason, doesn’t make me or my shoulder feel any better.

The good news is that I can still swim, as long as I breathe to alternate sides, which does reduce oxygen intake, but I’m not going all that fast anyway, so it’s fine even if the coach does yell at me to speed up.

Apparently going to the Olympics a couple of times will make you all bossy-pants.

Hopefully some work will come along soon. I’m beginning to lose track of what day it is.

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

This is the way we scrub the floor

This week has been all about cleaning the house because I don’t want the new owner to think I live like a pig when he does the walk through (I’m not sure when that’s going to be. I’m still desperately hoping I’m going to start working again soon, so I’m cleaning now while I have the time), and I’ve come to the following realization about myself:

I have way too many shoes. Really, it’s out of control. I blame my mother, whose motto was ‘never throw anything away because as soon as you do it’ll come back in style and then you’ll have to buy another one so you may as well just keep the old one’ for my current footwear overflow issues.

Hell, I can’t even wear quite a few of them since Dr. Buzzkill put the kibosh on my wearing heels. But I just can’t bring myself to get rid of them.
The doctor has also ordered me to lose as much weight as I possibly can (without becoming one of the lollipop-head set, of course, although years of hauling cable around have left me with enough muscle in my upper body that I’ll never be able to get scary skinny) in the hopes of buying some time for my  knees.

I’m on a pretty brutal workout regime – not only do I have those doctor’s orders to drop some lard, I have to get some of that muscle back on because although I make jokes about being weak and girly, not being able to do my job doesn’t go over so well at work, so when I’ve not been cleaning the house I’ve been pumping the iron and doing the hated cardio in the gym. I’ve basically doubled the workout I normally do – heavier weights, more exercises per body part, longer cardio time (my knees are fucked up because of work, not the gym so the physical-therapist approved workout’s not going to make them any worse).

All this working out has left me sore and cranky. That, and I really hate my gym. I’ve been going to 24 Hour Fitness for years and it used to be a decent, no-frills type place to work out, but now the clubs are oversold, horrifyingly filthy and generally miserable.

They’ve also gotten rid of the gender-segregated spas. I love to sit in the steam room, but I hate sitting in a smelly, trash strewn steam room with guys who stare, make comments and ‘accidentally’ brush up against any women they can corner.

I’ve decided that as soon as work starts back up and I get a steady check, I’m switching. I’m looking at Meridian (no web site that I can find), because they’ve got a club close to me and one of my friends goes there and just loves it.

Of course, the gym I’d really like to join is the Sports Club LA, but it’s so far out of my price range that I can’t even begin to think about it. Damn. They have the best pool ever.

Enjoy a photo from the weekend’s road trip up the coast which I was too tired and sore to write about:

Old San Simeon beach

Also, the couch blog got featured on the LA Times website today.

Filed under: cranky, Non-Work, Off-Topic, Photos, travel, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Of all the days for me to pack light.

Generally, what I take to work is about the same no matter what I’m doing – items get added and subtracted depending on circumstances (rain gear, for instance, isn’t necessary in the summer months). In an effort to pack light, if I’m certain I’m not going to need something I won’t bring it.

Yesterday, I thought I was going to be the board operator, so I left certain items at home – like my toolbelt. Really, I don’t need the toolbelt if I’m going to be sitting in a chair pushing buttons all day, so it’s just added weight in the bag that my back will thank me to leave at home. Ditto the stiff work shoes that give me ankle support when I’m carrying something heavy – if I’m sitting in a chair all day, I can get away with wearing soft sneakers that are much more comfortable.

So when I got to work yesterday, I was surprised (and a little dismayed given what I’d left at home) to find the regular board operator siting there – first unit were out on location, so he’d stayed behind. Since he’s been running the board on this show since it started, he’s really the best choice for the job under any circumstance (I’m just the redheaded stepchild here), so I just inwardly groaned at now being woefully unprepared to do my job.

Luckily, I was able to borrow some gloves (the one thing I absolutely cannot do without), and then if I needed a tool throughout the day I just had to find one of my co-workers and beg.

D’oh.

Lucky (or unlucky) for me everyone just thought this was funny.

The other serious miscalculation I made involved the gym. Last week, I got clearance from the doctor to go back to the gym (I have to wear the knee brace at work, and am still forbidden from running, but it’s a start), so on Sunday I worked out like crazy, thinking I’d be sitting in a chair most of the day yesterday.

Oops.

Of course, this particular set is two levels, and three guesses who kept having to go upstairs and up the ladders? Actually, going up wasn’t bad – it was coming down that really hurt.

It’s probably better that I didn’t sit all day, because this morning I’m not nearly as stiff as I would have been – so I guess I can’t really complain. I’m also a lot less tense right now.

At wrap, one of our actors commented: “You seem much happier today than usual”

I don’t know if I was happier or just distracted because of the pain. Probably a little bit of both.
When I don’t work out, I get cranky. I guess the gym is where I vent my pent-up modern city dwelling aggression, so I’m much calmer when I’m working out (I guess this makes me an addict) – On the drive home, I didn’t yell insults at the other motorists nearly as much as I usually do. I just sat in the car, happily listening to the new CD I bought, and then when I got home, I soaked in a tub full of Epsom salts before I went to bed.

I’m still a little sore this morning, but since I know that I’m going to be running around, I can pack accordingly (laptop? no. Work shoes? Yes. Arnica cream for sore legs? Oh hell, yes)

I might even bring my gym bag and try to hit the gym after work (depending on what time we wrap and how much turnaround we have).

Filed under: mishaps, Work, , , , , , , ,

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