Wednesday, May 24, 2017
I'm not sure how I forgot to mention this in last night's blog. I WAS a little stoned/codeine cough syrup messed up so...
I was at a concert for autism support the other night that my kid played at. The governor's wife and some other minor dignitaries were there.
The big story here is, though, I lost my sunglasses. They were in a glasses-case inside my camera case. I pulled my camera out a couple of times, and noticed the glasses case had fallen out. I pushed it back in the bag, but the glasses must have fallen out.
I really can't survive with them.
You may think it's a fashion statement or an attempt to look cool, but bright light KILLS me. Especially sunlight. Any irritation can cause uveitis which, if you forgot, looks like this only worse:
The optometrist guy, one of the best in the state, told me: If it's daytime hours, wear sunglasses. Even if it's cloudy. He advised me to avoid bright light.
All of this is impossible when you lose your sunglasses. They're prescription. I can't just throw on regular sunglasses because then I can't see.
Anyhow, I went back the next day but the venue didn't find them. Nobody turned them into lost and found.
So I hightail it to my optometrist. I need an updated version of my prescription so I can get the glasses. I just want a new date on the form, I don't want my prescription to change.
My doc's not there. No adult one is. They refer me to a store in S.P., say it should be no problem because all I need is a refraction. Not a health test of anything.
The store in S.P. says they can't do that. I'm like, "Why? I'll pay for the test. You can put my glasses in the machine and see what my prescription is." But they act like I'm a fucking dude trying to get more oxy at the pharmacy counter.
Like, what possible way could I be abusing the system by trying to get my prescription? They finally say they'll do it, but they have to give me a new test anyway. I say fine, as long as the form you give me says exactly what this other form says.
They do it. I get the form. I rush it to Costco--under the wife's health plan we get a free pair of glasses every year, up to $175. So the glasses are free.
My only worry was that they may not carry the exact type. It's been a few years.
But they do have it. They say it'll take 5 days. I'm thinking...I can't leave the house in the day for 5 days...
I dropped the prescript off on Friday. It's Tuesday and they got me my glasses. And they're perfect. I'm whole again.
I know. Cool story, bro, tell it again.
They can't all be winners. *
*this is actually a line in the Ttory 2 script....
Tuesday, May 23, 2017
Am back from Cancun. Let me tell you, did not want to come back.
This is weird for me, because usually when I'm on a vacation a part of me always is sort of anxious to come back to get to normalcy. I like my routines. I like, in general, things to go according to my expectations.
In Cancun, every day was wide open. We were there with 10 other people. Weirdly, every day I woke up around 7am because even with the curtains shut, there was a crack of that sun coming through and you don't know what bright sunlight is until you go to Cancun.
This is what the beach looked like:
We'd head down to the pool or beach, and people would be drinking. We'd go to the buffet and get whatever we wanted, all paid for already.
Day 1 got crazy--we got there, got set up, and everybody got WASTED. There was some inappropriate flirting, some flashing of the boobs from some of our party, some passing out. I got pretty drunk, but not too crazy.
We got dinner and went to the "theater" where they had one of the worst shows I've ever seen. It was like a high school musical but these people were adults. Luckily, the drinks were still free at every bar on the grounds.
We actually were up and in bed by like 11pm.
This was the view from our balcony:
Everybody decided that day 2 we'd take one of these catamarans to snorkel and drink. We headed out, and it started pouring. Like, SUPER pouring.
The rain disappeared fast though, and we got in the water to snorkel with some fish. The current was STRONG. My wife actually had to get a tow back to the boat, it was that strong. Even some of the other guys used the rope to pull themselves back in.
This is a shot from the water. (I had a cheap water-proof iphone case)
After snorkelling they took us to an island with tons of shops and stuff. We rented a golf cart to drive around in, which was funny because you're driving in the same road as regular cars and shit. We ate a quick snack at a restaurant that gave us two kinds of cheese. "This is very hot," said the waitress as she pointed to one. Then she pointed at the other. "This one is worse."
Understatement. I barely touched the super hot to my tongue, and it was burning for the next hour.
We returned the golf cart and I bought my wife a cool Cancun cowboy hat(they love haggling there). Then back to the catamaran to go to another island that had more drinks and food. More swimming if we wanted. The whole time these guys are feeding us drinks CONSTANTLY.
I now have a favorite new drink: Sky Blue. It appeared to be 50% vodka, 25%blue curacao and 25% 7-Up. No shit, I probably drank 40 of them over the course of the day.
We headed back, them blaring the radio, people dancing, drinking. It was a pretty amazing time. My wife described it as a perfect day, and it's hard to disagree.
Back at the resort, we kept drinking in the pool.
The rest of the vacation mostly was us hanging in the pool or the beach. (I liked the beach a lot more than the pool, but my wife thought it was "too cold", and it was nearly impossible to escape that sun. My pale skin couldn't take it too long.
I played about 2 hours of pool volleyball one day. Kept forgetting my fucked up shoulders, so when I'd go up to spike...I'd swing, and then the blinding pain that makes my arm numb for about 60 seconds.
I'd say the one down side is that most of the restaurants on site weren't great. The buffet was, much of it being made right in front of you, but the steak house wasn't great. Their salmon didn't seem fresh. The 2nd time I ate there I just wanted a burger, and it tasted weird, and I threw it up later that night.
They had a 24-7 snack thing, but it was TERRIBLE. Nothing there was good. We didn't find out until the last night that we could call free room service and order whatever we wanted.
One night we went out to Senor Frogs to celebrate the wife's birthday. She likes it, but I found it a bit obnoxious. Lotta loud noises, horns, the waiters want you to interact with them all the time. I would have enjoyed it in my 20's...
Then we went to a mall with a Hard Rock Cafe shop. My wife was gonna get the kid a souvenir with a guitar or drums on it. We pulled a T-shirt and I'm not exaggerating: A regular, short-sleeve T-shirt. $40. American. Couldn't believe it.
We put it back and found him something at another shop, plus found me a cool hat for $10.
Later we may or may not have had a spiked brownie and laid on the beach from like midnight to 3am. It was INCREDIBLY relaxing.
Now I'm back though, and Ttory2 has to start getting moved on. The serious casting and scheduling, which is a nightmare due to everybody's schedules.
Going location scouting on the shore tonight. (never seen one of the houses we're shooting in, so need to get an idea of the layout for the shooting script)
Later this week or next, gotta head into the woods and find my specific locations plus do some other tests. And great news--sounds like it's gonna be the worst tick season in like a decade!
Tuesday, May 09, 2017
It was a fast trip. Something I've noticed the past couple of years: There are no 100% smooth flights anymore. There's always a couple of minutes with decent turbulence, if not longer.
I get there and realize that we're like a 10 minute taxi from the Texas Frightmare Weekend. My buddy Dom is gonna be there, and he reps some awesome actors. If I got out of the auction early enough Saturday and I wasn't tired, I could head on down and hang out with Batmanuel(for one).
So Friday I go to bed early--I had only gotten a couple of hours of sleep the night before so I figured I'd be out until I had to get up.
Nope. I woke up at 4:30am. I only got five hours of sleep, for a total of about 9 hours over a two-day span.
Did the auction. It was hard to keep my eyes open at times. But we got out early. I grabbed a burger downstairs, headed to my room. I figured I'd take a short nap, wake up at 9pm and head over. Could be there from like 9:30 to whenever Dom called it quits(usually like 2am).
I set my alarm. I woke up and glanced at the clock. 11:15pm.
I'm like...huh? I check my alarm. I set it for 9am instead of pm. At that point I was like, fuck it, it's too late. But I was pretty pissed.
Got back. Super tired. Took a little nap, and went out to see Guardians of the Galaxy 2. It's fun. The IMAX 3D looks really good. I didn't like it as much as the first film, but still a good time.
Hardest part was dodging THREE trailers on one film. Normally it's maybe one, but this one had a trailer for the new Alien, Spider-man and Star Wars.
Definitely dodging all the trailers about those three, 'cuz I'm already going. Don't want anything ruined.
I think the impending stress of T-tory 2 is starting to affect my sleep. Not in a positive way.
Monday, May 01, 2017
Fred(the actor who plays the clown in Ttory) wanted to meet me to get his copy of the dvd. I told him to meet me at Friendly's.
I get there. It was 9pm. I get out of my car and see some people standing around(waiting for their ice cream order, no doubt). Some other people chatting by their car, having probably just finished their dinner.
And a heavy-set black guy on the bench.
I get out of my car, looking around for Fred. I don't see him. So I stand there.
"Boss man!" I hear. "Hey boss man!"
It's the guy on the bench. It's dark, so it's hard to tell if he's looking at me or not. I don't say anything. He's pretty clearly gonna ask for some money.
He points at me and says again, "Boss man?"
I snap out a very clipped, "What?"
Guy says "Nothing."
I figure he got the gist from my demeanor that I'm not giving him anything. A family of three pulls up, gets out, and I hear him ask them something. I can only hear their reply which is "Sorry, only have a card."
Obviously I was right. Looking for money.
I'm texting Fred to see if he's late when I sense the guy approaching me out of my peripheral vision. I look up. He's a little taller than me, and bigger, but he's limping a bit.
"Hey man," he says. "I was just trying to ask you a question."
"Yeah," I reply with a face that says Like I Care.
"You didn't have to snap 'What?" at me like that. I just wanted to see if you could help me out with a couple bucks to get home."
"No." I reply.
Here's where it got weird. I've always been a reader of body language. Like, a REAL good reader of body language. I started reading books about it in high school in further pursuit. You can really tell a TON about a person by how they move or carry themselves.
And this guy's right fist balled up. Then he did a way-too-casual look to the right.
It was at that moment I realized--He's going to try to sucker punch me. I've seen this sort of shit in those knockout games videos that were going around a while ago.
I stepped back into a defensive position and shouted, "Step the fuck back!"
"Okay, okay," he says, but he doesn't move.
"Back the fuck off or I'm gonna knock you out," I further inform him, and I can already feel the adrenaline going through me. Been a long time since I been in a fight, and he's a big guy, but I'm actually kind of excited I'm gonna get to punch somebody again. Been a LONG time since I been in a fight.
"Come on, swing at me bitch, " I say, since he seems conflicted about what to do.
He finally backs off though. I tell him get the fuck out of here, and he starts walking away. He gets about 100 feet away and starts shouting shit at me. Something about "Bet you ain't gonna say 'What?' to nobody else!"
Fred had texted me back. He was already inside in a booth.
I went in and had some ice cream. Chatted with Fred. Came home. A little disappointed there was no fight.
Yeah, I'm probably too old to be fighting, but the spirit's still willing.
Anyway, still trying to get shit together for Ttory2. This is gonna be as challenging as usual...
Friday, April 28, 2017
Going to Dallas for a couple of days for business. I'm actually flying home a day earlier than everybody else. Usually they keep me around an extra day even if there's no computer auction to help out, but to tell the truth I don't like doing the other shit.
So on the one hand, a smaller paycheck. On the other hand, don't gotta do shit I hate.
Then I'll be back for a couple of days and off to Cancun.
I'm gonna try VERY hard to not think about how much work awaits me on my return. At the point I get back I gotta kick Ttory 2 into overdrive.
- Completely cast two segments.
- Start overseeing the FX so I don't have any disasters on this one like the first one
- Go out location scouting. In the woods, and on the eastern shore where I'm gonna have to film a couple of scenes.
- Buy all the props.
- Do a ton of equipment tests.
- Make sure my shooting scripts are rock solid.
I think those are the main things. Obviously as we get closer I'll have to do all the menial shit like buy snacks/water/bug spray and shit. Honestly, I'm not dragging a cooler into the woods on this one. Will have it in the car and tell people to grab what they want and carry them to the set. Just have enough to last til the break, and we can go back and get more.
I haven't turned on my edit computer in over a month. It's kinda weird.
My KVM switch is fucked. I used to have a 2-computer switch, but then when I had 3 computers hooked up I had to get the 4 computer(they don't make 3's that I know of).
But this one is doing REALLY weird shit where one computer's mouse or keyboard just stops working. I have to unplug the USB plug to that computer, wait a moment for Windows to beep that something's changed, then plug it back in.
That USED to be the fix.
Now the one computer, if it loses keyboard, LOSES it. Period. And then, oddly, none of the other USB ports work on that computer anymore until I reboot it. Looking at the Device Manager always shows 2 exclamation points under Human Interface Device.
It got so bad and was happening so often that now I just have my two internet computers hooked up to separate mice and keyboards. It's a hassle.
I should just completely abandon the old computer, but I still do a lot of shit there. (there's still some stuff on this new computer that doesn't work the same way, and I'm not real enthused about that)
Note to self:
Fucking love this song. Really digging a lot of synth that's coming along. The hook on this thing that starts at 22 seconds is SO catchy, and then there's Sax later. I wanna make a movie to put it in.
Friday, April 21, 2017
So the DVDs came in. Always fun. Flashes me back to the time my first film HH came out. It's pretty much the last thrill in making movies. The thrills, in case you're counting, are:
- Finishing it.
- Seeing It Up On The Big Screen
- Holding your movie in a dvd or blu ray case. (or at one time a VHS sleeve)
I used the opportunity of pimping the movie on some web sites and also forced myself to pull the trigger on Ttory2 by informing these web sites. So now if I don't do it I'll look like an asshole, and that puts pressure on me.
I have breakdowns on all 3 of the segments I've written. Shooting scripts on two of the three(but not shot lists, cuz I gotta go find the exact locations).
Am starting to reach out to specific people to see if they're interested in parts.
No spoilers, but Bates' Motel is pretty phenomenal. There was a point where I was like "What are they doing? This isn't going to work with the way Psycho the movie starts...and then the show revealed that THEY'VE clearly thought about this stuff and how the audience would react, and they're playing us. It's pretty great.
Got a lawyer. Fuck this dude's insurance company if they think I'm gonna bend over on this one.
My neck is off and on pain. Some days not bad, other days super sore.
But my chiropractors took an x-ray of my lower back and were pretty shocked to find out that my last disc is pretty much fucked. Almost no pad between it and the disc above it. And worse yet, bone spurs coming off the disc--one of them pretty much looks like a fang hanging off of my disc.
They used words like severe degeneration and they said the word "arthritis" a bunch, which is weird because they weren't talking about my grandma.
They were kind of shocked that I'm not in pain WAY more often. I guess they don't realize my tolerance for pain is extreme. I get my fillings without any novacaine or painkiller at the dentist. No shit.
My record was four fillings in one day with no painkiller. I was in high school.
Maybe I'll tell ya about why I do that later. And hey, happy 4-20.
Did you see this actual picture tweeted from an actual police force? (They said they'd set up a trap for all the people partaking in 4-20.
See, even the cops think this whole thing is ridiculous. Good to see they have a cool sense of humor.