Saturday, December 22, 2012

Do Squirrels Explode?

If they keep stocking up on nuts for the winter, and winter never actually comes, will squirrels eventually explode?

(admit it... you can't stop thinking about it now.  you're welcome.)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Walking in a Winter Wonderland... ish


I remain pretty surprised by how dry winters are in Toronto.

But while taking a walk one night, I was lulled from my usual route by the glow of a neighbourhood that gets into the Christmas season by decking out their homes regardless of the grass-covered lawns that mock their holiday spirits. 

I see pictures posted online of car clusters with their undersides dotting the ditches off Highway 2 outside Edmonton and kinda get homesick for the adrenaline rush of realizing your car is no longer in your control and you just hold onto the wheel hoping that your tires will find traction before your windshield finds snowdrift.

Oh well.  I can still run to the store at the end of the block in sandals if I choose.  That's a bit of rush, I guess.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Favourite Thing About Working In Production - #5

SURPRISE BEAR ENCOUNTERS

This stuffed bear had been sitting amongst random items behind the set for weeks until finally one of the writers could take it no more.  He hauled it into the boss' office and lay in wait until someone noticed.  We had all seen it and had a knee-slapper of a time over it before the boss came back -- walking right past us talking and asking about our afternoons while heading for her office without looking inside it.  Wondering why we were all just grinning and watching her, she walked into her office quite confused -- then leaped back out the office in a single bound.  (sadly, none of us knew that she was actually quite terrified of bears, poor thing.  on its face though, it was a marvelous moment.)

I love being around creative people who think outside the box... through as warped of eyes as I do.

Production Fave #5:  The Inmates Running the Asylum

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Favourite Thing About Working In Production - #4

SUSPENDING DISBELIEF

Every day of prepping a script (meetings and revisions and plans and preparing what will be shot the following week), the production office distributes a Prep Schedule to everyone.  The Prep Schedule outlines what meetings are at what time, and who is expected to attend.  So you can scan the schedule at any time and see where you're supposed to be ... or look at it for the explanation for why someone is not answering your phone calls.  A ha!  They are at the 2:00 to 2:30 meeting to discuss whether or not the background performers for scene 32 will be asked to show naked-side-butt (an actual term we started to use).

When there are no more scripts to prep -- because you are about to shoot the last script of the season -- there is little to do but prepare to take down the season's bad guy.  Efficient as ever, the production office pencils that in for you.

Production Fave #4:  Scheduling Departures from Reality = Business as Usual

Friday, November 9, 2012

Favourite Thing About Working in Production - #3

(first, a disclaimer: I am not currently working in production... but I still have favourite things about it)

LEARNING A NEW SKILL

One day last year, the Producer came to me before a readthrough and asked if I would fill in for the Script Supervisor for a Second Unit shoot (ed. note: The crew that films the main actors/story is known as Main Unit.  If footage is needed that doesn't require the main actors and there isn't enough time on the schedule for Main Unit to pull it off, it is filmed by the Second Unit).  Thing is: although my position is Script "Coordinator", that has absolutely nothing in common with what the Script "Supervisor" does.  Or vice versa. 

Wanting to be known as a team player, I replied (very slowly) "ohhh...kay" -- and ran down to the Script Supervisor to ask her how the heck she does her job.  The above were my notes over the course of the 15 minutes she had time to give me.  I'm not even sure what they mean, and I was there when I wrote them.

So I'm sure you're not surprised to hear how very R-E-L-I-E-V-E-D I was that they found someone else.  Phew.

Phew, right up until this year... when TWICE I was asked to fill in for the Script Supervisor.  (be very careful about wanting to be known as a team player -- people may take you up on it)  And... twice I did.

Production Fave #3: Being In Over Your Head and Living To Blog About It

Friday, November 2, 2012

Favourite Thing About Working in Production - #2

That my monkey is both the colour of Pink Script Revisions...


... and Blue Script Revisions:

(pure coincidence)

Production Fave #2: Stealth Monkeys.
__________________________________________
p.s. you thought I didn't exist any longer, didn't you?

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Favourite Thing About Working in Production - #1

Alrighty then -- so planning some fashion of orderly delivery of some of my favourite things about working in television production has resulted in radio silence on my blog. You know you noticed. Don't pretend you didn't notice. So... I shall heretofore endeavour to share my faves in no particular order, starting with:
EAVESDROPPING IN ON THE SET WALKIE

It's pretty quiet here today. Writers are writing. Or sitting in meetings. Or eating. There's lots of eating around here. Then there's the cast and crew, who are shooting in the studio today.

On days that there's shooting in the studio, the writers room gets a walkie-talkie so we can hear when they're rolling (ostensibly so that we don't burst out of our room into the shot... which has happened... kind of... at least enough so that they've given us a walkie to try to curb such oopsies...).

Basically, it's like listening in on someone else's baby monitor, or getting your cordless phone's signal mixed up with your neighbours'. People are working and talking and you just sit and listen in like an auditorial voyeur on their business. It all feels very naughty -- and yet is completely on the up and up. It also helps on those quiet days -- like today -- where but for the grace of the opportunity to eavesdrop on others, I'd be having an indepth conversation with myself.

Production Fave #1: Eavesdropping in on the Set Walkie.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Really? Are you sure?

Well, okay. If you say I haven't posted anything on my blog in months, I'll believe you. There is still that whole "what I love about working in production" thing I intend to post... but a reality of working in production (I've been back at it for season three for the last couple of weeks) is the general feeling of not wanting to do anything but sit on my couch and watch tv when I come home from work. I know: shockingly similar to the not wanting to do anything but sit on my couch and watch tv when I'm unemployed.

Actually that's not true. I did quite a bit off my couch and away from my tv when I was unemployed. So there. It's not similar at all. You thought you got me, but I in turn got you. Fool.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Yeah?! Wanna make somethin' of it?!

Last week I made arrangements with my brother to sell my baby KITT. It needed to be done. I just don't see driving in Toronto often enough to warrant the cost of parking and insurance and gas associated with my love. And, if I do get to a place where I want my own vehicle -- well, who knows how old KITT will be by then... and is letting him just sit until I may want him again really prudent? And let's face it: gas and insurance costs would not be kind to KITT here.

And yet I'm most saddened that I never said goodbye. Not that I never got the chance to say goodbye -- that I never took it. Three years ago when I knew the company that was going to take KITT down to MH was due, I just cleaned out him out and handed over the keys. And now, after sitting on a lot for almost three years (and having his butt flap -- otherwise known as spare tire cover -- pilfered), he's going to be sold to someone else thinking I don't care.

Okay... have I really flipped my rocker over into believing a vehicle has feelings? Don't be idiotic. But *I* have feelings -- and I loved my KITT.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Goodbye 1987 Luggage Set

You'll no doubt give many more years of enjoyment to whomever bought you from the goodwill store where I donated you today. The fact you've had only one owner for the past 25 years is Mom and Dad's fault for buying you so durable in the first place.

The fact you're the colour of bloody Pepto-Bismal, well that's Mom and Dad's fault too. But hey, at least Dad never ran you over before you got a chance to go anywhere more interesting than the garage.

Happy Travels!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Happy New Year

Well well well ... long time no post, eh? Well I was thinking of you all when I took the following picture titled "Xmas Shopping in the Rain"


It was December 19, and rain was the only precipitation Toronto was to see this Christmas season.

Which made me even more excited about my return home for the holidays. The map was my attempt to explain to our American executive producer my travel plans. (the fireside scene, alcohol and snowflakes was one of the writers' contributions to complete the mise en scene)


Note the computer with the universal sign for "Don't". I had told the writers that I wasn't going to be bringing my computer home with me, so they would have to format things themselves. Luckily, the writer who was writing the episode that was being prepared over the holidays is the one writer who seems to need little of my assistance in properly formatting his script.

Finally, Alberta! My first Alberta sunset in almost two years (location: Lethbridge, outside my friend Tracy's office)


It was cold and dark and snowy... and I loved it!

So, I have about one more week on the job. This season ends on the 23rd. I'm not sure when the next season starts, thus not sure how long I'll be able to lounge happily on my couch. How lazy am I? I just got off a three week Christmas vacation, and I'm already looking forward to couch-time. Oh well. Gotta be me.

Stay tuned: this week I intend to post My Favourite Things About Working in Production...