Saturday, January 26, 2008

Another Saturday Night

And I ain’t got nobody…

Yeah, we all know the story. Nuthin’ too exciting.

So lets talk about movies for a few, shall we? I’ve opted out of going to see an Otto Preminger double feature. I’m not entirely sure why. I’m just feeling like a bit of a homebody. I’d rather hang here. I’m not sure if it’s the best of ideas. I should work on getting out more. Starting some sort of life.

I need to get to the gym more. I need to start getting back in shape. I spent so much time getting somewhere; I should stay on that path. It’s important for me to do that.

I know this is considered writing, but I need to spend more time writing. I need to practice. Writing as we all know is a learned skill and like any skill, you must practice, stay in shape in order to get stronger, better at it.

Practice, practice, practice. I need to sit down and make a list of the things that I need to do an start making a schedule for it. I can’t sped as many hours a work that I do. I need to streamline my work time to include time to work on moving higher up the work ladder. I can’t get out if I don’t climb up. That’s why the hole is there in the first place.

Oh and for those of you keeping score, I’m holding off on the monkey fro now. They cost about seven grand; so it may be more of a long term, save up for kind of thing. But damnit, I really wanted one to help clean the bathroom.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


So we’re going crazy with the rain right now. We’ve got flash flood warnings, the power has gone out and we’ve got to jack up the volume on the television just to hear through the rain.

In seven days I’ll be sitting on a couch, probably laying down, with my eyes closed and waiting patiently for the hour when I can slowly open them again. Hopefully, my vision will be back to perfect and I’ll be able to see through women’s clothing. I’ve been thinking about what I’ll se first. I’m pondering having Izzy woken up so I can open my eyes to se him. An interesting fantasy, but the truth will probably be a chair or dirty coffee table. So it goes.

What I’m more curious about is the first movie I’ll watch. I’ll be staying away from television for a few days while my eyes fully heal, but I’d like to make the first film I watch something special. Yeah, I’m a geek, but it will be a movie I will have a new attachment to. I want something good. I’ve been thinking of a Kurosawa film, but I had the idea that I may watch In The Mood For Love. It is a visually stunning film and I haven’t seen it in a while. It is a brilliant film. I strongly recommend it, first time with new eyes or not.

I just had a quick flash so I’m off to look into buying a Capuchin Monkey. Wish me luck.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Makin’ Friends

So what does a guy like me with no friends do? He goes out and makes them. I of course can’t do this the conventional way. I have to walk up, ask to take there picture and start in on some conversation.

Today, my new buddy is Dennis a homeless Russian guy who is an actor. I went to do laundry at the local mat and saw him sitting against the wall outside. I thought he had a good look to him so I asked if I could take his picture. He asked why and I did my regular lie of how I’m in a photography class and I’m taking pictures as an assignment. He asked for my teachers name and I responded with a Mrs. Samson. No idea where the name came from, though I did ponder saying Samsonite originally. I shortened it for brevity sake.

So I snap a couple photos, give him the money and he asks if he can have copies. That’s when he launches into his story of being an actor and he needs headshots. Hmmm, well I can go home real quick and print a few out. He’s tickled pink about the idea. He goes to buy a bottle of vodka with the cash I gave him and I go home to print out the pictures. Now, It did strike me as very cliché that he was a Russian who went to buy vodka, but when in Moscow…

So I print out the pictures, come back and he’s watching my laundry spin around in the dryer to make sure no one decided to walk off with it. Very generous of him. I’ve got about twenty minutes until the dryer finishes so we sit outside and he talks to me about studying method acting, reading Stanislavski and such.

He then started asking me about music and what I liked. I mentioned a couple songs after thinking about it for a bit and he launches into his love of Nirvana and how incredible Kurt Cobain was. He’s bringing up all of this stuff about the CIA writing Cobain’s songs and asked which one was my favorite.

Me: I really liked the entire Nevermind album.

Him: I liked that song Lithium. Want to hear it?

Me: Yeah, sure.

He then starts playing all of the instruments with his mouth and sings the entire song to me.

Him: Good, yes?

Me: Not bad.

Him: Who do you think his influences were?

Me: I know he liked Lead Belly.

Him: Who?

Me: This old blues guitarist. Nirvana covered one of his songs on MTV Unplugged.

Him: Which one?

Me: My Girl, or Where Did You Sleep Last Night. I forget which one is the title.

Him: This song I know. Want to hear it?

Me: Sure.

So he sings the entire song. He falters a couple times, hums a bit to himself while the gears in his head turned until they came to him, but he sang the whole thing.

When it was over he decided to move on to the works of Pink Floyd and started performing Comfortably Numb. It’s not often a Russian transient sings to you, so I was digging it for a while. When my laundry was done, I politely excused myself, we shook hands, he thanked me for the photos and said it might help him get an agent. I wished Dennis the best of luck with his career and said this town can be tough, as if he didn’t already know that.

Him: Next time, we sing Zeppelin. You know any Led Zeppelin?

Me: Not really. But I’ll study up on them.

Him: Good. Next time we sing Zeppelin.

I'll have to figure out why I don't mind hanging out and chatting with homeless people, but I find it hard to talk to other people. Very odd.

Pictures of Dennis can be found here in the On The Street collection

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Bai High

SO we were standing out on the terrace at work having a cigarette when someone points down to the court, "I think Bai Ling just walked by."

So we scurry down to the Virgin Mega Store to check it out and sure enough, there she was reading magazines.

This is awsome because she is a very loopy crazy woman. She's not a half bad actress and she is continually made fun of on our site because her English is not the beast and she has a philosophy about life. She also dances like a crazed maniac. Not exactly the best reasons to make fun of her, but they still do.

So I run back upstairs to grab my camera and run back down to have my picture taken with her.

This is also the official unveiling of my rippingly cool new t-shirt that promotes the outpost from John Carpenter's masterpiece "The Thing" So you get a twofer on this one.

A couple of real badasses, eh?

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Bye, Bye, Four-Eye

So here is the deal folks, I’m getting Lasik.

On January 30th my eyes will be locked open like Alex Delong and I’ll be receiving a form of Ludovico treatment. When it’s over I’ll have these goofy goggle things taped over my eyes for several hours and all I’ll be able to do is listen to podcasts. When it’s all over, my vision will be fixed and I’ll be looking at the world with new eyes.
Is this a little scary? Yes. The idea of having some laser piercing through my eye is not an image I want to concentrate on. I also hope that I don’t get sick to my stomach when I listen to Beethoven.

I’ve been wearing glass since I was 11. That’s 24 years of eye care. 24 years of waking up every morning an not being able to see he world until I reached over to my nightstand and grabbed those magnifying pieces of glass.

It’s really exciting. And a new experience to add to my collection of life’s little moments


I’ve been whining a lot recently about all of the bad crap that has been going on. So for a few minutes, I’d like to pass on some things that I am grateful for.

#1. The Job: It may not be the most satisfying gig on the planet, but it is much closer to what I am trying to do with my life. Last year at this time I was unemployed because the show I was working on was cancelled. The year before that I was unemployed and back in school to start a new career and attempt to get back into the industry. Three years ago I was in a miserable job and it had nothing to do with any goal I wanted to achieve. So now I’m actually editing (sort of) and working in Hollywood in television. It may not be making movies, but it is a hell of a lot closer than filing paperwork in a cubicle for the mental health industry.

#2. My Friends: I may not have many, but the ones I have are very supportive and are always willing to listen to my hair-brained schemes and ideas for making shows. I don’t believe that I would still be clean and sober without their help and I think they are a great group of people. Everyone should have a core group like this.

#3. AA: I may not be the most active participant in Alcoholics Anonymous, but it is always there when I need to be around people who have gone through a lot of the same shit that I have been through. It makes a person who feels a little disjointed in the world not so alone.

#4. FGP: Film Geek Primer may have slowed down (hasn’t stopped folks, it’s still moving) but it allows a creative way for me to vent about where I believe the state of film is and help educate people about why movies are such an important part of the world, not just my life. Expect more soon and we’re trying to arrange a schedule so we can pump more of them out more frequently.

#5. Women: They have caused me more paranoia, emotional duress, lack of trust, incredible moments, laughter, sex, company…All of those things that force me to look at myself and have helped me play catch-up with those very immature emotions that I’m working through. Thanks ladies.

#6. Izzy: Yeah I may be the only one that calls him that, but my non-nephew/nephew has made me feel like a family may not just be something that I want, but would really enjoy having. He makes me feel like being a parent is actually a good thing in this world.

#7. Music: I mean come o people if you can’t understand why music (any kind) is so incredible you have no souls and need to just give up the ghost right now.

#8. Movies: It may be last on this list, but is certainly not the least. It is my window to society, my art, myself. Discovering a new movie is akin to discovering a new galaxy. It opens up so much possibility. Akira Kurosawa once said, “If you subtract movies from me, the remainder would be zero.” I’m in good company.

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Sometimes It Don’t Fly

Sometimes things just don’t work out right. I’ve had a couple of those moments over the past week. Walked away from a couple friendships to avoid screwing things up and hoping that some form of healing could begin. The other was having a friend let go of me because it just might be too tough.

The friend who had to walk away is Stefanie. We dated a little back in June and July. She’s a really great person. She’s a scientist and a bit of a geek, which is really cool. We had a good time together and it felt comfortable. But it just didn’t click for me. It has nothing to do with her, which is what she keeps thinking. Something just doesn’t fit right for me. I couldn’t tell you what. I really have no idea. I know a lot of people can understand this. I just feel that we work better as friends. I have too many issues and self-loathing to get into anything that might hurt her. There are lots of things that I could use as an excuse, but in the end, it just won’t work. And committing to a relationship that is just going to cause pain and suffering in the future is just plain old bad.

She had to walk away from me because she doesn’t want to have to deal with the pain of me finding someone else. It makes so much sense I can’t refute it. There is a part of me that will feel hurt when she meets the right guy. It’s not a being in love thing; it’s just that emotional realization that you’re not the one. It’s funny ain’t it.

Anyway we’re not talking right now and I understand her position. I hope that maybe we can find that friendship sometime in the future; because I really do enjoy her company and I really want her to be happy. Without me around hopeful it will help her find it.

It was a good time and I’m lucky to have been involved with such a good person.

The friendships that I had to give up are a very long and complex story. I’ll try to figure out a way to lay it down and get back to you later.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

38 Hours

I woke up a couple hours ago after staying awake for 38 hours straight. This is the first time I’ve done anything like this for a long time. It’s the first time in an even longer time that I’ve done it clean and sober. Let’s take a journey, shall we.

I woke up at 4:30 on Thursday morning. This is standard for work, so the next several hours is just business as usual. This work shift ends at 5:00, so here are the first 12 and a half hours.

At 5:00 I go down the sushi house that is also the watering hole for the work place. Meet up with a few co-workers and enjoy a few diet cokes and listen to the drunkenness begin. It’s funny to watch people get drunk. I’m a little envious at first, because booze really speeds up the ability to loosen up. I have to find it in myself to relax and just go with the flow.

About 7:00 it is decided by someone that he won’t be able to drive home and decides to get a hotel room just down the street. Since none of us did any partying for new years because of work and basic burn out, it was decided to have a bit of a party at the hotel. Since I haven’t done this in a while I say sure, it’ll be fun to get out and act like a regular person for a while. Booze is purchased, a room reservation is made and by the time we get everything to the hotel it is 8:00. I’m now at the 15 hour mark, very normal.

At the hotel it is one other guy, two girls and me. The guy is an obnoxious shit, one of the girls is a tired drunk who seems to be pretty coherent and the third is drunk out of her skull and isn’t stopping. Over the next few hours, I’ll witness an emotional breakdown, a wrestling match that turns into something that is half a step away from becoming a potential rape and basic stupidity. This was the time that I was really happy that I no longer drink, because it was just sad and all I witnessed was a bunch of bullshit posing and self-loathing. Quite a bit of fun for a person who enjoys watching how people behave, not fun when I relies that I consider some of these people friends and realize how fucked up they really are. I decide I really can’t deal with it and whatever happens is what happens. I wont be able to stop it and maybe they just need o do what they need to do. I leave at 11:15. I’ll have to be up at 4:30 for work, so I’ll get a few hors sleep, which is good. I’ve now been awake 18 and three-quarter hours. So it’s basically reached the tipping point.

I drive home and am sitting on my bed at 11:30 when the phone rings. My first though it the voice is going to be a drunken crying woman who needs me to drive her home or listen to a monolog that is going to run in circles for an hour or two. The caller ID read “Private Number”, this means it is one o two people from work. Shit. Britney spears has gone crazy, footage coming in, can I come to work? Sure. Actually I was jacked up on caffeine and nicotine, so I knew I wasn’t going to fall asleep too easily. I stop by the 7-11 to but a couple bottle of diet Mt. dew and a pack of smokes. I know I’ll be there until morning.

I’m at work at midnight and I’m waiting on footage, cutting footage and spending the next five hours digitizing and cutting all kinds of crap surrounding Britney Spears breakdown. It goes o longer of course, but this is where the extra nighttime stuff ends and my regular work shift would begin at 5:00. 24 and one half hour, I’m still going strong.

The regular shift until 5 o’clock, everything ran smoothly. The folks from the hotel room showed up a little late, but in one piece. The day was relatively normal and there was not as much craziness as I was expecting. I think around 11:30 I entered into the land of wacky. I felt it necessary to stay because they were shutting the power down to out building at 7:00 for maintenance. We were shipping equipment and people over to a different studio for Saturday and I wanted to make sure all of the editing equipment was set up properly before they took it away. Aaron was kind enough to go to the studio to help set it up. We wrapped up work and I was done at 5:00. I hit my second wind around 4:00 so I was feeling pretty good. It was an employee’s last day so I went back down to the sushi joint for the farewell party. I’m now at 36 and 1 half hours.

While at the sushi joint, I got to practice some bar tending skills. I got to get behind the bar and make drinks for folks. It’s funny that I can serve drinks and not have the desire to drink. Part of my reasoning for this is like being a bank teller. They handle money all day, but don’t take any. I was doing a job, performing a service. We got a call that Dr. Phil wanted some footage we have for a Monday taping. This means I need to go back upstairs and locate the footage to burn to DVD. So back up I go, it’s now 6:30.

I’m home by 7:10 and going crashing in a chair watching Jeopardy with Gabe. We talk about the movies he’s been watching. The best of them being “To Live And Die In LA”. He’s amazed he’s ever watched it before. We carry on about its greatness while we watch contestants fuck up on tv.

(ANSWER THIS: On the game show Jeopardy, how is it possible for a contestant who takes third place to end up with more money than the winner of the day? I look forward to your responses.)

The Simpson’s come on at 7:30. I start to fade fast. I stay awake just long enough to hear the world’s best Sydney Greenstreet impression then haul my ass to bed. I crashed approximately 7:40.

Final toll: 39 hours 10 minutes.

My math ain't too good after staying up that long.