Thursday, July 31, 2008

The new bay they have me in upstairs at work is very close to the kitchen/break room. Because of this, the smell of whatever is being cooked in there tends to waft into my edit bay. We only have access to microwave ovens and a toaster oven, so that sort of limits the choices of what's being cooked in there. Thus, it's often the smell of microwave pizza or warmed up Chinese food. As if those weren't enough of an assault on the senses, every day between 9-9:30am, I get the smell of tuna fish blowing through my office. I don't know who the hell it is eating tuna fish for breakfast, but as I'm sure you know, tuna is something that is pretty much only tolerable to smell when you're the one eating it. I've walked into the kitchen to see who it is only to find it empty. Apparently, it takes a few minutes for the smell to make it's way from the kitchen to my office, so who the tuna maker is will probably remain a mystery forever. All I have to say is tuna for breakfast...blech!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Welcome to Wally Wednesday! Since my neighbor has been watching Wally while I've been working, and it's been hot out recently, he and Stryder the bulldog have been spending a lot of time in the pool:

Today's bonus animal, my friend's cat, Cosmo, who thoroughly enjoys crawling into boxes and sleeping there:

So, I've been thinking about buying a house recently. At first, I was just thinking I might look into getting one in a year. Then I looked online and saw what was available to me right now, and there are a lot of promising things out there. Still, the idea of having to make my place sell at the right time and for the right amount while at the same time finding another house and securing a loan and getting the planets all in line seems a little overwhelming. Worst of all is the bump in property taxes. Right now I pay about $3k a year, and that would go up to over $6k a year. Maybe I'll wait awhile longer...

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

We had an earthquake here today measuring 5.4 on the Richter Scale. I was at work when it happened. When you live in Southern California, you get used to tiny quakes happening every now and then, picking up your cup of coffee so it doesn't spill, then moving on about your business when it's done. This afternoon's quake, however, wasn't that small. In fact, it's one of the bigger ones I've experienced here, since the months following the '94 Northridge quake when aftershocks regularly measured in the 5's.

Wally was home by himself and I had a horrible vision of him laying pinned beneath my new flat screen television. After 15 minutes of not being able to make any calls, I was able to get ahold of my neighbor who keeps an eye on him during the day. She said he was actually over at her house and was far too busy chasing their cat to notice there had even been an earthquake. (She also checked my television to make sure it was still standing).

For those of you here in California, how was the quake for you?

Monday, July 28, 2008

It's really hard to come up with something interesting to say when I'm shut in a dark room 8 hours of the day with little interaction with other people. I could complain about work, but what would be the point, really? The 3rd of 4 episodes should lock this week, which means I should be home in less than two weeks. In theory. We'll see if that actually holds up. If you want to see the show I've been working so hard on, it premieres this Sunday night at 10pm Eastern Time on HGTV. I'm not sure if it will be airing at 10pm here or not. You might want to look for it at 7pm.

Things to look forward to when I get to work from home again:
  • Sleeping in
  • Making my own lunch instead of eating out
  • Wally at my feet
  • No more commuting or exorbitant gas bills
  • Sleeping in

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Finally, a day of rest today. I spent the afternoon hanging out with a friend who lured me to the Beverly Center. I haven't been there in years. Now I remember why. Man, that place is crowded on a weekend! Other than that, I just hung out with Wally and watched the season premiere of Mad Men on TV. Finally, something for my Don Draper fix!

I read today that Shia LeBeouf, who recently starred in Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull, was in an accident last night and arrested for drunken driving. He was trying to make a left turn and collided with another car, rolling his truck. He was taken to Cedars-Sinai with hand and knee injuries. LeBeouf, a product of Disney (he starred in Even Stevens), has always had a "good kid" image (even his mug shot looks like a class photo). However, he's recently been involved in some minor scrapes, including a drunken confrontation with security guards at a Walgreens store. I like him as an actor and have enjoyed seeing him go from being a funny kid to an accomplished young adult actor. I hope he doesn't go the way of other former child actors in Hollywood.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

So, I tried to play hockey last night and reinjured my leg again. I thought I would be ok to skate since it's never hurt to do that, just to run. Guess I was wrong. Sadly, I think I'll need to take a week or two and just give it a rest all the way around. As for soccer, the A League team they put me on has folded for the season due to lack of participation. It's sort of a blessing in disguise because I didn't want to play in that level league anyway and now my leg is hurt. On the upside, the league has decided to make another B League team and they asked if I want to play.

I'm having a small party at my house later this afternoon for my friend, Jeff, who just got his green card. Jeff is the Center on our hockey team and he's really good, so we were worried for awhile that we might lose him back to Canada. He was here working on a visa and switched companies a few months back. The company was supposed to handle switching his work visa over. In the meantime, his sister got sick and he had to fly home to Canada. After a week, he headed to the airport but was caught in Immigration where he was told his work visa was no longer valid. He called his attorney who said the Immigration officer was an idiot, and the Immigration officer in turn said his attorney was an idiot. He ended up stuck there for another week not knowing if it would be 2 days or 2 months before his visa got straightened out. Needless to say, his getting a green card is definitely a cause for celebration. Any excuse for cake is good for me!

Friday, July 25, 2008

As I'm sure you're all aware, people have gotten into the habit of naming their kids some pretty weird things these days, especially people in the entertainment industry. Witness Bob Geldof's daughter Fifi-Trixibelle, Penn Gillette's daughter Moxie Crimefighter, Christie Brinkley's kid Sailor Lee (I assume that's a boy). The list goes on: Jigme, Kafka, Phoenix Chi, Rumer, Tabooger, Prince Michael, and poor, poor David Carradine's kid I.P. Freely. Why don't you just beat the crap out of that kid yourself, David?

This week, a judge in Wellington, New Zealand ordered that a young girl's name be changed from the one her parents gave her: Talula Does the Hula from Hawaii. The 9-year-old girl has been so embarrassed by the name, she's never even told her closest friends what it is and prefers to go by the name "K." In his report, the Judge wrote, "The court is profoundly concerned about the very poor judgment which this child's parents have shown in choosing this name. It makes a fool of the child and sets her up with a social disability and handicap, unnecessarily." Unlike in America, New Zealand law does not allow names that would "cause offense to a reasonable person," says the Registrar General of Births. Registration officials have blocked other names (Fish and Chips, Yeah Detroit, Keenan Got Lucy and Sex Fruit) while, inexplicably, others have been allowed (Number 16 Bus Shelter, and tragically, Violence). You have to think the New Zealand goverment has the right idea - I'm sure Caspar, Daisy Boo and Malu Valentine would all agree.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

My friend's husband, Andy, is a glass sculptor who does (I think) some really amazing art. For most of the past year or so, he's been working on a project for the Omni Hotel in Downtown Los Angeles and the piece is finally complete...44 impressive feet of glass art. It looks like it turned out amazing, and I'll definitely have to get down there and see it for myself. If you're also in the L.A. area, the Omni courtyard is at the northern side of Water Court that connects to MOCA. It's one block east of the Walt Disney Hall at 251 S. Olive. I'm told you can grab a bite to eat at the hotel's restaurant Noe and admire Andy's handiwork.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

As I've mentioned, I've been really busy and having to work from the office during the day which means Wally is at home by himself much of the time. My neighbor has been great - she works at home and when she's available, brings him over to spend the afternoon with Bulldog Stryder and new Kitten Suki. Here's Wally getting to know his new neighbor:

The show I'm working on is a design competition and has "celebrity" judges. With the exception of one judge, I pretty much don't know who any of the others are that makes them "celebrities." The episode I'm currently cutting has a black woman named Kim who seems to be the main judge and does the final breakdown at the end of the show. I assumed she was a designer because we have a show on the air with a black woman named Kim that I've never watched. I was working on the end portion with a producer who was having problems understanding what this judge was saying (I wasn't having the same problem) and he kept asking me to back up and play her again. He kept saying, "Back it up, I need to hear what Tootie is saying again." After he said it a couple of times, I said, "What? All black women are 'Tootie' to you? Is that how it is?" To which he replied, "No...that's actually Tootie." I guess I'm the one mixing up my black women.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I woke up late for work today - always a good way to start the day. I took a quick shower, grabbed some icy hot and an ice pack and headed to work. Luckily, I have a job that keeps me in a chair for 8 hours a day so there isn't much walking involved. Work was par for the course as of late - lots of work to do and not a lot of time to do it. Today, we deliver the second of four shows which means, in theory, I shouldn't be here that much longer. It seems a bit sad that I actually look forward to the day when I will be able to edit a HH again. Mostly, I look forward to not having to wake up quite so early and being able to spend the whole day with my dog.

I think I've also gained 10 lbs since coming back to the office. When I'm at home, I usually just make myself a sandwich for lunch and take Wally out to play. Since coming back here, things have been so stressful in the office I look forward to lunchtime as a way to get out of the building for an hour so I'm buying lunch every day of the week, and it's not always healthy. I'm far too lazy to plan ahead well enough to bring lunch. I just recently started to run again to lose some weight, but now of course, I can't run. Hopefully, everything will be better soon when I get home and I can work out again.

Maybe it's because I'm stuck back in the office again, but it seems like summer is passing me by. Last year, I went to Australia and New Zealand for a month, the year before, it was 10 days in China. This year, I haven't even had the chance to go to the movie theater. Has anyone else done anything interesting with their summer?

Monday, July 21, 2008

Remember how I mentioned last week that I ran into a small brick wall with my thigh? I've been able to play hockey on it twice since then, and although the leg is a bit stiff the next morning, skating itself has been pain free. Imagine my surprise, then, when I tried to play my first soccer game tonight and became basically unable to walk or kick after playing for about 10 minutes. The pain became excruciating every time I kicked the ball, but we were really short players (we had only 5 instead of 7) so I couldn't come off the field. I ended up volunteering to play goal where I let through approximately 5 goals in one half. I am now barely able to walk and am worried I may have done additional damage to my leg. I'm hoping I didn't tear anything. Now I'm off to take some ibuprofen and a hot bath, followed by some ice. I would say this was a rather inauspicious return to soccer for me.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I'm throwing a party for a friend of mine next weekend, so I made a trip to Costco today. I don't have a membership any longer, so I haven't been there in a long time. At first I was like, "Ooh! I miss Costco! It's so cool!" Within 5 minutes, I remembered why I hate Costco - the unrelenting crowd of stupid self-centered people who like to drop their carts wherever they like so they can run over and get a Popcornopolis sample. I was glad when we finally got out of there.

I'm enjoying my day off today and am thinking about maybe going out and catching a movie later. Probably not Dark Knight because everyone and their cousin is there this weekend, but I would still like to see Hancock. We'll see if I get off my ass and actually get there. Wally and I are feeling rather lethargic in the heat.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

There's not much for me to be happy about today as I'm stuck inside working...again...on a Saturday. However, I saw this online and it made me laugh despite that, so I thought I'd share it. Enjoy!

Friday, July 18, 2008

I'm sure you've noticed how there seems to be a Starbucks on nearly every street corner. When I lived in Burbank, I saw a new one get built and open literally two blocks from another one. Starbucks owns ore that 7,000 stores in the United States alone. As it turns out, the rough economy and the high price of gas has caused people to cut back on many things, including premium coffee. By 2009, Starbucks will close 616 stores in 44 states, the highest number closing in California. Starbucks has admitted that most of the stores that are closing were opened within the past two years...many within blocks of another Starbucks. That just seems like good planning, doesn't it?

For me, work has gotten busier and busier all week. They've asked me and some other people to come in and work over the weekend. Since I haven't had a single full weekend off since the onslaught of this show, I'm debating if I want to bother. I'm pretty burnt out. I did say I'd come in for awhile tomorrow just to finish up the piece I'm working on. Other than that, we'll see. I'd like to sit home and do nothing for a change.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

I found out today that I was placed on a team in the Glendale Women's Soccer League, which is great. I wanted to be put on a B team, which is the more novice, less competitive league. When they placed me, I asked to confirm I would be playing in the B League, but they told me there were no places left there and they'd placed me on an A team - more competitive, better players. Which means I will be the worst player on my team and everyone will hate me. I'll be "that player," the one where everyone groans when I'm out there and prays a goal doesn't go in. Well...maybe I'm just being too hard on myself, but still.

I had my second session with the soccer coach this evening. So far, in two sessions, I have come away with two injuries...all before setting foot on an actual field. During the first session, he tossed a ball at me when I wasn't paying attention and I ended up jamming my finger. This time we were playing in a park (not on a field) and I had to hop up this 2 foot brick wall to retrieve a ball in a big flowerbed or whatever, and I mis-stepped and came down, full weight on my thigh across the brick. I'll assume there won't be a small brick wall on the soccer field next week, but I don't think any of this bodes well for my return to soccer. I feel like a total klutz. Although I'm sure my father will attest to the fact that, even as a child, I always played soccer with more aggression than grace.

I can tell you, my leg already aches and there's a huge bruise rising. No matter what my brain thinks, I am forever reminded that I'm no longer a teenager.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Welcome to Wally Wednesday everyone! Here's the newly cleaned Wally after a recent bath. If this picture says anything, it's "It's good to be clean! Wheeee!"

Another day at the office today. The show FINALLY locked its first episode (of 4), the second episode goes to the network this evening, and the third episode is nearing it's first complete assembly. I'm starting to see a light at the end of a very long tunnel, I'm just not quite sure yet if it's a train or not.

I saw this article up on the internet today. It's one of many about the state of reality television employees, specifically, the "writers" of the shows. Because reality television is notoriously non-union (at least for writers and editors), the production companies feel free to take full advantage by signing employees on a "weekly rate" - a weekly FLAT rate. This means that no many how many hours you work in a day (and a day was minimum 10 hours), or how many days you work in a row, you get paid the same flat rate. It's in gross violation of basic labor laws. When I was coming up through the ranks, doing this kind of work was called "paying your dues." We knew we were getting screwed, but there wasn't anything we could do about it. Complain and you would likely find yourself unemployed. We all feared that trying to really do anything about it, like contacting a government agency, would probably put us in a situation where we'd never be able to find work in Hollywood ever again.

I worked on a show which lasted three and a half months, and I got 9 days off in that entire time. I would often work from 8am until after 9 o'clock at night with no time off for lunch, and twice, I worked over 24 hours in a row. Yet still, my time card would be kicked back if I didn't write in a standard 10 hour work day. The rate was then divided into 40 hours regular pay and 10 hours OT so it looked like it was on the up and up.

Although I don't necessarily agree with the WGA calling what most reality writers and editors do as "akin to writing," I do agree that something needs to be done about the reality production companies taking advantage of people. I'm all for unionization. If they unionized reality tv employees, there wouldn't be as much of it. Part of its appeal to networks is that it's cheap, and the reason it's cheap is that they have no overhead with the crew. Maybe eventually, when all the unions get everything sorted out, we can get back to having decent television again.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

When they decided to bring the whole hands-free law into effect, I thought it was a good thing. It seemed like every time I got behind someone going 10 miles below the speed limit or swerving on the freeway, it was some idiot talking on their cell phone. Now, they've passed the law, and all I see out there are...idiots with headsets on talking on their cell phones...still not paying attention to what they're doing. I'm sure the law will eventually cut down on accidents caused by people preoccupied with...what? Holding the phone to their heads? You still have to dial the phone, right (unless you have a voice activated dialer)? It makes me wonder why talking on the phone in your car, despite the headset, is somehow far more distracting than having a conversation with the person in the passenger seat. More to the point, why do people need to talk randomly in their cars at all? I remember the many, many years I spent before cell phones when I would drive in my car and not feel the need to just talk to people for the hell of it. But that seems to come with mobile phones, too, doesn't it? I'm sure you've all been victim to the person next to you at the gym having a loud conversation on their phone while on the treadmill. Unless that person is saying, " get the rib spreader, and carefully open the chest cavity..." it just seems like a call that could wait until later.

I guess that's my rant for the day.

Monday, July 14, 2008

It feels like it's been a really long day today. Because of wacky scheduling at the rink, my co-ed team had back to back games this week (yesterday and today). Which means I got home late last night (full of IHOP, of course), got up and went to work, came home from work, took Wally out, got back in the car and drove across town for hockey and just got home. I'm surprised Wally even recognizes me, I seem to see him so little lately. I think both he and I are looking forward to me eventually working back at home again someday.

I was just trying to peruse the news headlines to see if there's anything worth blogging about, but it appears the biggest news today is Jimmy Kimmel and Sarah Silverman's breakup. Yawn...

Sunday, July 13, 2008

It never rained here last night, and it's still hot and muggy out. I turned on the a/c less for the heat and more for the humidity.

I watched the season premiere of Saving Grace today. If you haven't heard of it, it's a drama on TNT (who has been doing some very decent shows the last couple of years) starring Holly Hunter. I love Hunter, so I knew I had to give the show a shot. I have to admit, I found the story a little hard to follow at times. I actually thought it was a new series and didn't realize until later that this is the second season, which explains a lot! Besides Hunter, the show features a pretty decent ensemble cast including Laura San Giacomo (Just Shoot Me!), Tom Irwin (My So-Called Life) and Kenny Johnson (The Shield) taking the role of Ham (as opposed to Lem), Hunter's boyfriend. I think I'll stick with it for now, although renting the first season may not be a bad idea!

While channel surfing today, I came across Reno 911. I forgot how much I like that show. In the 30 seconds I was parked on it, one of the female officers was heading up a "scared straight" program and had high school students at the morgue. She pulled up a sheet to show a dead body and explained, "This man was driving drunk...COMMA...without knowing how to do it right."

Saturday, July 12, 2008

One cool thing about living in the San Gabriel foothills is watching lightning storms around this time of year. I saw on the weather report this morning that they were expecting thunder storms over in Wrightwood and Big Bear on the other side of the hills today. Driving home this evening, straight at the mountains, I saw a beautiful spectacle of white bursts as lightning flashed on the horizon. By the time I got home and took Wally out for some fetch, the lightning bolts were visible in the sky and I could hear thunder, so the storm must be getting closer. It's been muggy all week, so we could use a little torrential downpour to clear everything out. I'm thinking of sitting out on my patio tonight to watch some more of it. It's too bad I can't capture it with my camera.

Last night at the ice rink, the goalie of another team (not the team we were playing) got knocked out cold during her game. From what I understand, she collided with someone rushing in to the goal and was knocked backwards where she hit the back of her head either on the ice or the goal post and went right out. She must have been out for close to 10 minutes. They called 911 and firemen showed up. They eventually got her onto a board, stabilized her neck, and took her to the hospital. I think she came to right around the time they picked her up off the ice. So, on the downside, a player was unconscious on the ice. On the upside, there were hot firemen in the house. I wonder if that can be considered an even switch?

Friday, July 11, 2008

I woke up so tired this morning. Before I even got out of bed, all I could think about was coming back home and going to bed early. Then I remembered...I have an 11pm hockey game tonight. Sigh. I could have taken the whole weekend off but volunteered a day since they're still a bit behind on the show I'm on. Besides, I got my paycheck today and saw the rewards of my extra days so it's hard to stop when they're offering it. It's not often you get the chance to make extra money there. At least I can pay for my new snowboard!

The other day, a friend and I went to grab lunch up the street when I noticed a new shop in the strip mall. It was a Famous Cupcakes. Of course I had to stop in! I bought a Red Velvet cupcake and meant to save it until later that afternoon to eat, but I ended up going after it right after my lunch. It looked so good, I couldn't resist. Oh my god. I think it was quite possibly THE BEST cupcake I have ever eaten! I guess that could explain why it was over $3. If you happen to have a Famous Cupcakes near you, I strongly suggest stopping in. You won't regret it.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

While I'm in the midst of trying to find a soccer team to play on in the area, I decided to take a couple of lessons from a guy recommended by a local league - a bit of a refresher course. I must say, muscle memory is amazing. I was able to experience something I've always been envious of in hockey players returning to the ice after not having played for 20-30 years as a kid. Passing the ball, stopping it, trapping it, shooting it - while I may not have perfect form and am certainly in need of much improvement, it all came right back to me. And is has been over 20 years since I've stepped onto a soccer field.

I'm glad the guy went over the rules with me again, as some things have changed since the last time I played, especially in regards to the goaltender. I played goalie for the first couple of years I played in a league, back when it never occurred to me that the whole team might blame me for a loss should I do something stupid. I don't think I could handle the stress of playing goalie now.

Now that I've had a taste of playing again, I definitely want to find a team so I can play a real game as soon as possible.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Welcome to Wally Wednesday! Here he is after a rousing game of after dinner fetch this evening. No animal is more content than a retriever with a ball.

As I was sitting in my new editing bay today at my tiny little editing desk, one of the other editors came up to check out the new bays. He's being moved upstairs next week when they activate the other 4 empty bays. He picked the one other room with a window (we NEVER get windows in editing bays, which is why editors are always pale and blinking at the sunlight). He stopped by my bay to see how the new setup was going. When I pointed out the tiny editing console and mentioned my chair wouldn't go low enough for me to be in an ergonomically comfortable position, he said, "Yeah, but you got a window." I shrugged, "I guess." After a moment, we had this conversation:
Him: That's sort of annoying, though.
Me: What?
Him: That sound.
Me: What sound?
Him: That tree outside, with the branches scraping back and forth across your window.
Me: (noticing the branches scraping for the first time) Oh. I can barely hear it.
Him: Really? It's like fingernails on a chalkboard.
Me: (Listening again) I guess it doesn't really bother me, I've never even noticed it before.

Within 5 minutes of him leaving, I begin to notice the branches scratching on the outside of the window. It takes only a moment to realize it does sound like fingernails on a chalkboard. Pretty soon, the sound of the branches scraping drowns out the sound of my editing system and the only thing I hear is the stupid branches scraping across the stupid window. How could I have not noticed this before? Aargh!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

I got moved today at work from the impromptu office they had me editing in to one of the new bays they just built upstairs. There are 5 bays and I'm the only one currently working up there, so it's nice and quiet and there's actually a window I can look out of (onto the roof of the building next to us). On the downside, they bought the smallest possible editing consoles. There's barely enough room for all of the equipment, and when I first walked in this morning, it took me a moment to figure out where I could set my keys and my phone. I'm still plugging away there. What started out as "probably 2-3 weeks" looks like it will be closer to 6. I asked about needing a day off the first week of August and was told I should be home by then. I am marking the days off on my calendar. I can't wait to be out of the building (no offense to everyone IN the building, of course).

I actually got off my ass and went running this evening. I only have one route and it's 5k so I took that. I made it through, but it was a super slow run. (I wonder at what point it is that you're actually not even "running"?) Now, I'm just kicking back with the dog watching an episode of In Plain Sight on the DVR (sigh - I can't even say "Tivo" anymore) - it's a decent show if you have nothing else to watch this summer. I'm looking forward to Burn Notice and Mad Men starting back up again soon (mmm...Don Draper).

Monday, July 07, 2008

One of the sound guys brought in something today he had bought online. He was telling us about it at lunch the other day, but we totally thought he was pulling our legs. It's called Bacon Salt, because, as the motto says, everything should taste like bacon. He bought the four pack, which includes the flavors Original, Hickory, Peppered, and Natural. I had to smell it. I must say, it DID smell like bacon, really, really strong salty bacon. Also, if you're wondering, Bacon Salt is both vegetarian and kosher, so it's perfect for all the vegetarians and Jews in your life. Especially the vegetarians who always felt they were missing out with bacon...get the taste of it, without eating the pig! One has to wonder what bacon would taste like salted with this stuff.

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Tonight I watched a movie called The Amateurs on DVD. It's about a group of people in a small town who set out to make their own porn film in an effort to make some money. Think an American version of The Full Monty...except only somewhat cute, and generally boring. It stars Jeff Bridges along with several other notable character actors, plus Ted Danson (who plays a gay guy). I'd like to say that at one point, about 20 years ago, I thought Jeff Bridges was a fairly attractive guy. Now, he looks way too much like Beau Bridges, with all the face scrunching and overgrown eyebrows.

I got an e-mail today from an old high school friend who I hadn't seen since before I graduated (he moved away when I was a Senior). The internet is such a great thing for that. We knew each other from band (yes, yes...I was in band. It was an easy A), and I was glad to hear he still plays the drums and even makes money at it. I still think of him as a kid because he was a Freshman when I was a Senior, but now he's all grown up with a career and a wife and everything. It's funny how that happens.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

I almost went to sleep without blogging. Boring day. Slept late, worked 8 hours, came home and pretty much headed to bed. At least Wally was able to come to work with me today so work was more tolerable. A day with your labrador is always better than a day without one.

Friday, July 04, 2008

I'd like to say I'm doing something really fun and interesting for the 4th today. The truth is, this is my first (and only) day off in 11 days. I slept in, did some laundry, went to the grocery store, and had an impromptu lunch with a couple of friends. Oh! And I bought myself a new snowboard (one that's right for me this time)! I went to a place I highly recommend which is Billy's Board Shop in Montrose. The guys in the shop are extremely patient with people new to snowboarding (like me) and excited to help them learn more about the right equipment and the sport. I got almost a $500 board for $270. Sweet! With my new bindings, I'm ready to hit the slopes. I've got to figure out where the snow will hit first this year. Maybe I need a weekend trip to Montana.

Later tonight, I'm thinking of walking up the street to catch Prince Caspian at the second run theater. Other than that, Wally and I are just kicking it inside with the a/c on. Work tomorrow and Sunday and the rest of the week. Sigh.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

A friend who works at the same company I do e-mailed me the link to this TMZ article today:

"TMZ has finally uncovered the connection between the HGTV show "Design on a Dime" and hardcore pornography -- a host who really enjoys interiors.

While the network continues to regularly air episodes featuring former host Lee Snijders, we've learned the guy who helped homeowners for more than six years is still giving advice to couples -- but purely of the girl-on-girl variety nowadays.

Snijders used the cash he raked in from "DoaD" and his stint as a Disney Imagineer to start his own porn company with porn star girlfriend Jett Angel. You can even catch Lee in several of the reality-style skin flicks manning the camera (or so we've heard).

Calls to HGTV were not returned."

The show Snijders hosted, Design on a Dime, is produced by the company I work for. In fact, it was one of the very first shows I ever edited for them. I never met him, but no one around the office seems to have anything nice to say. As one co-worker said, "First - I never got the appeal of this guy as a host. He's short and unattractive and sleezy. Second - his designs SUCKED - unless you like every room to look like a cheap Tiki Bar in a low end Polynesian Motel." I wonder if he's helping to design the porn sets?

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Welcome to Wally Wednesday! One of the things that I miss about the cooler weather is Wally curling up next to me in bed. I miss it even more now that I'm back in the office and hardly get to see the little guy.

What I originally thought might be 2-3 weeks in the office is, I think, going to be much closer to 2 months. One of the reasons I've always enjoyed working for the company I work for is that they tend to do what you might call docu-lifestyle shows, scripted, somewhat educational, and a far cry from the problems of reality television. In fact, after I worked on my last reality television show, I swore I would go homeless before I'd work on another one. And here I am...working on what is essentially a reality/design show. I got nearly nothing accomplished today and spent several hours in meetings. I hate meetings - nothing tends to get accomplished there, either. At one point, I thought of going to the roof and ending it by jumping off the building. Then I remembered that it's only a two story building and the worst thing that might happen is I could break my leg. I'd still have to edit with just a broken leg. One friend suggested I try to land on my dominant arm, if at all possible. At least I can work some extra days and make some extra cash, and sleep when it's all over.

One of my hockey team mates, Jim, is off in Vegas playing in the World Series of Poker. He was playing on one of the small side events called H.O.R.S.E. I don't know what that means - I don't know anything about poker. What I do know is that Jim went in basically unknown and finished first yesterday, winning just over $256K, and coming in ahead of Phil Helmuth. For those of you who know as much about poker as I do, Helmuth holds 11 World Series of Poker bracelets (is that what they get instead of a cup or trophy? Weird), is in the Poker Hall of Fame, and is the author of Playing Poker with the Pros. I'd also like to point out that Jim asked me out about a year ago and I was totally not interested - and now he has a quarter of a million dollars. If I was really shallow, I'd be upset.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

I showed up at work to find I've been moved from one portion of the show I'm working on to another, which meant another day trying to catch up and figure out what I'm doing. At one point in the act I'm working on (it's a design show), the writer told me, "There's a bite where he talks about that countertop - it's really important to have there. The Producer said she saw them do it after the show was over as a pickup." Already, this is not good. Whenever a Producer (or Director for that matter) says they "saw" something, it doesn't necessarily mean there was a camera there to capture it. I once had a director tell me he not only KNEW he had shot a specific shot, but had written down the scene and take number, allegedly from watching it on his dailies tape (a copy of all the footage that was shot the previous day). All paperwork I had from the set contradicted him, but he wouldn't let it rest. I had to go through the motions of calling up the lab, having them put the film up on the film bench and look for it. They couldn't find it, of course, because it didn't exist. The director still wouldn't back down. I had to throw my hands up and walk away from him.

With the type of reality show I'm currently on, there are no scenes and takes, no script supervisor diligently keeping track of what's been shot and what hasn't. The sheer amount of footage that comes in is so overwhelming, it becomes tedious and time consuming to edit the smallest piece, just because you can't find the needle in the haystack. Today, I spent an hour sifting through hours of clips with 9 hours running at the same time and couldn't find the one that had supposedly been shot. I eventually stopped looking and told the writer it probably didn't exist. He had to make a call to another person who thought they remembered something, then called someone else who was on the set, and through an intricate chain of information, finally discovered it had actually been done in the middle of the show and was given the approximate time. Within 5 minutes, I found the clip. Of course, the day was nearly over. It was like being in "24" but instead of finding the guys with the suitcase nukes, we found the clip where the guy talked about the countertops. Tomorrow, more of the same.

Oh, and I realized I actually DID buy the wrong snowboard for myself and had to return it to REI today (which was actually quite easy). Time to search for another one...