Saturday, March 12, 2005

Three day weekend.. Sort of.

Yesterday (Friday) was my last day on the Paramount lot.. I'm back into freelance world - and I'm on a music video tonight (well, actually it's a 2 am call, so I can still go out, I just have to not show up drunk. Scraping the makeup off my face before work would be a good thing as well).

Got to Paramount at 7:30 am, after having been given the wrong call by the scheduling people - I was supposed to be in at 7 am. Fuck. I hate being late - at least the boss wasn't mad..

Worked for six hours tearing out a rig from a commercial that shot Thursday night on New York Street, and then went home. Yay! I love working for less than 8 hours..

I went to the gym (I need to go more often.. I'm getting doughy!), swam, did laundry, had lunch, and went shopping - there's a Lush in Pasadena. Crap. The only thing that was preventing me from spending every cent I own in there was my not wanting to drive all the way to the Promenade. Well, I spent too much, but at least I smell good!

I forgot to call in (to get my call time for Monday.. there's a schedule posted in the lamp dock for the next work day. It goes up about 4 pm, and it's got everyone's name, what their call time is and which stage they'll be working on - it's the employee's responsibility to check this board every day. Universal has one as well, as does Warner Brothers. Sony does not, and on that lot it's the responsibility of the supervisor to give the call time for the next day) before 5pm (I was so giddy with a free afternoon and I lost track of time), so I had to actually go to Paramount to check the call board - I got back to the lot about 6:30 pm, and saw my name in the 'layoff' column - I did a little happy dance right there in the hallway. Don't get me wrong - I don't dislike working at Paramount, I just get bored if I'm in the same place for too long.

As I was leaving the lot, Mr. Movie Star almost ran me over. He threw a "hey babe" my way in a distracted manner and then tore the hell out of there.. One of the security guards speculated that Mr. Movie Star must be late for his manicure. Heh.

I had yet another Craig's List date last night.. I wasn't sure I wanted to go out with this guy- he's really hesitant sounding on the phone - that sort of broken, full of pauses way of talking "Well.... my day was.... okay.. I..... went over.. to the store.... " Every time I talk to him on the phone, I want to reach through the earpiece, choke the shit out of him and shout "Get to the point!" Maybe it's me - maybe I just need to lay off the coffee.

He turned out to be much better in person, and I actually had a fun time. He's a grad student in film, which is interesting because he's not seen very many movies (He's not seen Fight Club, which I thought was de rigeur for the post-post modern budding filmmaker).

Part two of The Blonde's shoot has been rescheduled yet again, due to yet more scheduling problems.. We're going to try to shoot Monday now. I only have a page or so left to shoot, and I think we can do it in less than four hours.. It's basically two people talking. She's stressed about it already.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

The Face Plant, and other Indignities

I got worked today.. On top of it being very hot and humid all day, we actually did a lot of hard labor. I'm sore and shaky. I forsee a date with a hot bath and Epsom salts.

To get the equipment (lights, stands, cable, assorted junk) from the floor of the stage to the lamp dock (which is on the other side of the lot), it's loaded into 'tuggers' - these are metal cages four feet deep by six feet wide and about 5 feet tall that have an open side and a hitch that you can tow with a forklift - if you tow it with a forklift, you have to run alongside it like a secret service agent in a presidential motorcade to make sure that nothing falls out the open side, or you can be macho and use brute force tug it along (hence the name) - we had four, and one of them for some reason was very difficult to turn - whichever direction you wanted it to turn, the wheels would lock in the opposite direction, and the damn thing just wouldn't move...

We named it Christine.

We were struggling with Christine - we wanted her to go around a turn and of course she refused - making us unhook her from the forklift and fight with her - when Mr. Movie Star walked by. He winked at me and said "Hey, babe." I giggled, and then Christine turned unexpectedly, threw me off balance and I fell right on my ass. Christine then continued to turn and whacked me in the head with her hitch. To make it worse, these insane giggles were coming out of me as I sat on the blacktop with a bad case of the flop sweat and a big rust mark on my head where the hitch nailed me.

I guess Christine didn't approve of Mr. Movie Star.

The boys, of course, thought this was hilarious. The Artful Dodger almost fell off his bike because he was laughing so hard.. Mr. Movie Star gallantly helped me up, asked if I was okay, and then winked at me again before he walked off.

The boys took to imitating my insane girl giggle for the rest of the day. Anytime someone would say my name or speak to me, they'd start giggling. Eventually, it escalated into my being called "Giggles".

I suppose this is Karmic retribution for that whole Walrus thing.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

The Boob and Mr. Movie Star

Spent yet another day up in the "perms", continuing to tear out the ugly cluster fuck that was the power run for "Girlfriends".. The job has changed, though.. they now need the stage for a pilot, so it's not a complete tear- out.. it's just cleaning up most of the stuff, stacking it neatly, and leaving it there for the next rigging crew.

The 'count to ten' syndrome in action, only this time it's definitely worked in my favor. Having to tear out all the heavy cable (All of the cable we run is heavy - "heavy cable" is the heaviest stuff that we have.) and drop the stuff to the floor - while it would have been another day of work - would have really been painful - literally painful.. On days when there's a lot of cable, I go home sore and feeling sick, no matter how much water I've had.. Add the antibiotics into the mix, and that's Not A Good Thing.

We're still chopping up the "horse cock" and pitching it into the dumpster. It's still fun! The Artful Dodger brought a CD player up into the perms today and put on a Madonna CD.. I don't mind listening to Madonna, but it's just funny to see a grizzled crew guy bopping around to "Ray of Light". You'd think he'd like country or 'rental house rock' (that's classic rock, but it's all they play in the rental houses - hence the term).

At lunch I went over to the stage where "Enterprise" is wrapping, to give the boys copies of the by now infamous bridge photos, and I ran into Mr. Movie Star - smoking and making phone calls outside his stage door.. He's still not that cute but very, very charming. I showed him the bridge photo and told the story about the UPM busting us.. he thought it was funny, and then said that he was really disappointed that I was all the way across the lot as he liked talking to me. I felt all fluttery inside - I never, ever feel fluttery inside when an actor (famous or not) talks to me. Damn.

The conversation ended with my telling him to come over to my stage anytime - all he would have to do is walk on the stage and scream my name - and him responding by telling me that it would be much easier if I just gave him my phone number.

I just gave my phone number to an actor. I still can't believe I did that.. He must have had me under some sort of weird movie star spell.

Good thing the boys didn't see it - I'd never, ever hear the end of it.

The boob hurt like hell this morning, bright red and very painful - of course, I whacked it with a connector first thing in the morning (as I was hoisting a piece of 'horse cock' up to throw it over the rail into the dumpster), and ended up screaming in pain - the source of which I CAN'T explain to the boys.

After lunch, though, the boob felt better.. I guess the antibiotics are taking hold - redness is down, and it's much less painful, although still swollen.

We had a 'permit' today.. He's not union, but is trying to get his days to get in. Nice, nice guy. He's hilarious, and we didn't rib him too bad. He's back with us tomorrow.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005


First day off of "Enterprise" I'm still on the Paramount lot, but am wrapping out the TV show "Girlfriends".. They're done for the season, and we're to clear out everything. I'm guessing they're going to move the show to a new stage.

I'm working with a good crew of folks - my boss on this job is a very quiet, cool guy who's the polar opposite of The Walrus.
The two other crew members are Jim, who I work with a lot on the Paramount lot, and a guy who I just call The Artful Dodger.. not because he's sneaky, but because he looks exactly the way that I imagine a grown up Artful Dodger to look.. he's a great guy- fun to work with. Jim's fun too - he's got a ton of stories, most of which we've all heard 100 times, although he keeps telling them.

There's a type of cable that's unaffectionately called "Horse Cock" by electricians - it's really thick, very, very heavy, and doesn't carry much power (the weight is all insulation) - we all hate it, and Paramount's lamp dock has decided to get rid of it.. This means that instead of wrapping it - which SUCKS - we get to cut it!

I'm so happy to be able to walk along with a pair of big cutters and chop that shit into six foot lengths - and then kick it off the walk into a dumpster.

There's something very satisfying about destroying something you dislike and getting paid for it.
Of course, there's a lot of other cable on top of it which can't be cut, so we spent the entire day up in the perms - all 8 hours of it. An 8 hour day in itself is wonderful!

When I got home, one of my boobs hurt really, really bad - burning, bright red, and sensitive to the touch.. Sure enough, one of my piercings looks infected - it must have gotten bumped and opened up - then I might have picked at it.. The piercings are over 10 years old, and they've always been touchy - they oooze whenever I get sick or they get bumped. They get bumped a lot, but they don't usually turn red and cause me agonizing pain..
So I went to the hospital (there's an urgent care center down the street from me - they don't have a contract with my insurance, but it's worth the 100 bucks or so I'll have to pay just to get in and out of there - Cedars' ER always has a three hour wait), and got to see a very nice doctor - I was expecting a lecture about the evils of body piercing, but she just agreed that it looked infected and gave me a prescription for antibiotics. I walked up the the Rite Aid and being told there was a two hour wait, went across the street to a sushi place and had dinner.. the waitress gave me cooking sake instead of regular sake.. she was very apologetic and it was funny!

Finally got the prescription filled - was given a dire warning by the pharmacist to not lie down for half an hour after I take the medicine.. I think that may be the most bizarre medicine caution I've received so far. What's it going to do to me, jump up my throat?

I spent the rest of the evening soaking my boob in salt water.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Space... I'm out of it as of tomorrow!

Today was my last day on "Enterprise". I managed to get off the first unit crew (I had enough of The Walrus), and they cut the rigging crew, so I'm jumping to another show tomorrow.

We had a fun, fun day.. Everyone is really relaxed, and we were joking and having fun all day.. Near the end of the day, we were all (rigging grip/electric, set construction and swing gang) taking joke pictures in the bridge set and we got busted by the UPM. Ooops.. He was pretty good natured about it, but still. He walked in on us, and watched us for a few moments, and then politely asked us to please get back to work.. One of the stand ins who's a horrible gossip saw too, and the ENTIRE crew knew in about 10 minutes.. Damn.

Bumped into a Major Movie Star today.. he was on the stage next to ours, and we were chit chatting.. I had no idea who he was until someone told me.. He's not that good looking in person, but he's got that charisma.. when he talks to you, articles of clothing just loosen themselves.. he smiled at me, and my shoe came untied.. Damn.
Short, but a very, very nice guy. He offered to get me a cup of coffee (his stage had MUCH better coffee than ours), and then called me "Babe" in front of the boys, and they gave me shit for the rest of the day.

I'm going to miss the boys. Oh, and "The Walrus" is going to stick.. the nickname has spread through the crew like wildfire.. now EVERYONE on the Paramount lot is calling him "The Walrus"..


Sunday, March 06, 2005

Is it a 'date' or is it Memorex?

Had a date last night with a guy that I met on Craig's List.. Met at the Roost ( a 'dive' bar in Los Feliz).. I was dressed WAY too 'westside' for the area.

He actually turned out to be cute - too cute. I went home with him and fucked him. Bad me. In my experience, if you go home with them they'll never, ever call you again. I don't want a one-night-stand. I've been there before - I didn't like it then, and I don't like it now. I feel kind of cheap and used which is an unfortunately familiar feeling.

Sometimes you just need to get laid, but still.

I need another booty call to stop me from doing things like this.