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Sunday, July 31, 2005
I am so fucking old

Yup. The tenth anniversary of my undergraduate program at Queen's University is here, at a drunken binge delightful gathering called Homecoming. Seeing as I'll probably be working on X-Men 3 (please god please) 4,800 km away in sunny rainy Vancouver, I probably won't attend.

But, on our Alumni Site, there were some random musings, which frankly scare the crap outta me...

For the majority of Sci'95, it's been:

14 years since you first set foot on Queen's campus.

10 years since you saw the Grease Pole.
10 years since you lived with a "housemate".
10 years since you thought "I can't believe it! I passed my last exam!".
10 years since you read the "Golden Words".
10 years since you went to Ritual.
10 years since you ate Lino's poutine (ok, ANY poutine).

9 years since your last Mohawk.

7 years since you used gentian violet.

5 years since you saw a Golden Gaels football game.
5 years since your last sport hump.

Where has my youth gone???
My Poor Kids

Stolen erm... "Borrowed" from Laura


My life is rated NC-17.
What is your life rated?


Either Dawn and I gotta get a lock for the door...

or we gotta clean up our act. Hmmm.... I wonder how much Home Depot is charging for those things...
Friday, July 29, 2005
First Pick Hype

Now, after this idiot

and this idiot, who resigned yesterday

finally decided not to piss off the source of their income (namely the FANS), much of the world (and the beloved A-Golden-World-a-verse) are anticipating the almost given moment when the current joke of a hockey team Pittsburgh Penguins are expected to draft QMJHL superstar

Sydney Crosby first overall.

My words of advice Sydney? Play for Pittsburgh, even though we both know either Montreal or Vancouver are much, much better options. Because you don't want to turn into this NHL player, who used to be considered a star...

oops I mean

Eric Lindros.

Ok I mean both. Only one other player, Alexandre Daigle, got as much hype as you did Sydney, well since Lindros. But let's look at Lindros's track record, shall we?

Before the OHL draft (yeah all the competitive junior hockey levels have drafts too), Eric was both a huge scorer and a huge physical presence. A big flag went up for the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds, who had first pick. It was obvious they would pick him. But poor, precious Eric didn't want to Sault Ste. Marie (about 800 km away from safe, though polluted, Toronto). So Eric convinced his mom to beg the Greyhounds not to pick him. Well, they didn't listen and picked him anyway. So Eric threw another tantrum, and didn't report to training camp, thusly forcing the hand of the Greyhounds to trade him away to GTA friendly Oshawa.

And you think this is the end. No, this is just the beginning. As expected, Lindros's size and scoring punch made him the most talked about #1 potential pick since one of my picks for top five players of all time, Pittsburghs superstar (and current owner)

Mario Lemieux. That one cup in his hands is more than Lindros will ever see.

Anyhow, Lindros was extremely public about his reservations towards the team who owned the number one draft pick. The Quebec Nordiques. The basement of the NHL at the time. Not only did the team suck, amidst sporting future hall of famer Joe Sakic

a Burnaby native, I might add (wink wink), the Nordiques were unmarketable, and Lindros wouldn't make millions doing ads for Bauer, CCM, Nike, Gatorade, McDonalds, et al. He wanted to play for a (sic) American franchise. Mommy intervened again, and begged Quebec not to draft him, but they did anyway, to his disdain. Another long sit out, before Quebec traded him to Philadelphia for all the ingredients for Quebec to win not just one, but two Stanley Cups.

Ooops. Lindros could have won two Stanley Cups in Quebec. Well not Quebec, as the franchise moved to Denver, Colorado.

Double Ooops. If you stayed with Quebec, you would have ended up in Colorado, making Yankee dollars and endorsing everything under the sun. But, you whined and destroyed your reputation.

Triple Ooops.

Sydney, do yourself a favour. Bite the bullet, and prove yourself. Don't be another Eric. Unless it's this Eric...
Thursday, July 28, 2005
My Favorite Movies - Condensed

Thanks to Laura for showing me this site. As such, here are the Movie-A-Minute versions of some of my all time favorites.

The Godfather

Vito Corleone
Those who cross the family must be punished. (almost dies) (dies)



Michael Corleone
I'll run the family business straight now,

after I kill all these people.


THE END


Dr. Strangelove or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb

Oops.


THE END

Well you get the idea. Too bad the Star Wars ones suck major ass. Rewrites for them may appear soon.
Wednesday, July 27, 2005
A rare day off

And what do you know, I'm bored. Bored stiff waiting for this fucking phone to ring an call me to a shoot. Makes it tight seeing as I'm taking a part of tomorrow to go grab my checks from last week. Yup, things are tight until tomorrow.

Anyhow, the filler to span the time.

On my birthday (19 December, for those of you who haven't followed that)

BORN THIS DAY
1974 Jake Plummer, quarterback (Arizona Cardinals)
1972* Alyssa Jane Milano, Brooklyn NY, actress (Samantha-Who's the Boss)
1972* Warren Sapp, NFL defensive tackle (Tampa Bay Bucs)
1972* Waverly Jackson, DL (Carolina Panthers)
1966 Alberto "La Bomba" Tomba, Italian skier (Olympic-gold-1988, 92)
1964 Lorie Kane, PEI Canada, LPGA golfer (du Maurier Ltd-1994, 95)
1961 Reggie White, NFL defensive end (Green Bay Packers-Superbowl 31)
1944 Tim Reid, Norfolk VA, comedian (Venus Flytrap-WKRP, Frank's Place)

OCCURRED ON THIS DAY
1997 MTV drops video "Smack My Bitch Up" by Prodigy
1995 Queen Elizabeth askes Prince Charles & Diana to divorce
1989 Larry Bird (Celtics) begins NBA free throw streak of 71 games
1988 NASA unviels plans for lunar colony & manned missions to Mars
1987 Bruins' Linseman & Blues' Doug Gilmore score goals, 2 seconds apart
1986 Jack Morris agrees to salary arbitration with former team Tigers & accuses owners of collusion against free agency
1984 Scotty Bowman becomes NHL's all time winningest coach
1984 Wayne Gretzky, 23, is 18th & youngest NHL-er to score 1,000 points
1972* Apollo 17 (last of Apollo Moon landing series) returns to Earth
1971 Stanley Kubrick's X-rated "A Clockwork Orange" premieres
1961 British govt begins decimal coin system
1918 Robert Ripley began his "Believe It or Not" column (NY Globe)
1917 1st NHL game played on artificial ice (Toronto)
1904 Dawson City hockey team begins 9 day walk to get a boat to Seattle to catch a train to Ottawa to play in Stanley Cup on Jan 13 1905
1843 Charles Dickens publishes "A Christmas Carol," in England

More can be found on Famous Days.

That is all. For now.
Tuesday, July 26, 2005
The Little Differences Episode II

This one struck me at lunch today on set. Yet another one of the differences hit me, as I consumed a wonderful vegetarian lasagna along with 2 servings of corned chicken, with rice, garlic bread, and caesar salad. Mmmmmm. Oh yeah, the differences. Well, it's not so much a Toronto / Vancouver difference, at least directly.

Having said that though, in Toronto, where many productions are independent, craft service and catering looks a lot like this

and

respectively. Please also note that this is on the productions that actually spend a few dollars on food for the crew.

However, in Vancouver, where the independent films shot have money, and the union features most definitely have money, catering and craft service look a lot more like this

this

and this

And they always say the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. Yet I still can't gain weight working on set eating four lunches and two dinners a day.

Odd.
The little differences

Hard to believe that the Yorkshire Angel and I have been in Vancouver for a month. And as such, I've noticed quite a few changes between here and that hellhole I used to live in Toronto.

1. Almost everyone has Telus here. Rogers and Bell can kiss my ass!!

2. Our Canucks are younger, faster, and more likely to win a Stanley Cup than the lowly and pathetic Leafs. They don't even deserve a hyperlink. And guess what? The ticket prices, ON AVERAGE are about $100 per seat cheaper here.

3. In Toronto, this is called a Dief

whereas here it is called a three by.

4. In Toronto, this is called an adjustable wrench

whereas here it is called a crescent wrench.

5. In Toronto, this is called a coffee grinder

whereas here it is called a motorized weed preparer. Don't laugh. My cousin grinds her weed with this thing.

Which way to choose? I still find myself clinging on to the eastern way (ok the eastern Canadian way, I still respect Zen and Buddhist beliefs) of speaking, but then I am reminded.

In Toronto, they call this a mountain


when we know, that here, in British Columbia, that this is a mountain...
Sunday, July 24, 2005
Picture's Up

Yup. Just finished my first EVER paid week working as a Set Electric on some REAL films here in Vancouver. Now maybe, just maybe, I might actually be able to use my education to pay my bills, and god forbid, maybe just pay my financial obligations to my *cough cough* SCHOOL.

But that's just it, isn't it. Film school is all about learning how to tell that story visually. Which leads to a few stereotypical story types.

1. Gangsta/Crime/Ultra-violent short films. Which absolutely suck ass, as in a short film, there is no budget to make anything look nice.

2. Super Dramas. Films with little screen action, filled with loads of dialogue a la Woody Allen, and over dramatics to the yin yang. Next.

3. Documentaries about some weird guy. Not that guy

but just some weird guy who's endearable to the public, no matter how slow he/she may be.

Which randomly brings me to Vancouver. The TRUE Hollywood North. Remaking every idea imaginable. Smallville, yet another take on Superman. X-Men 3. Final Destination 3. Like Mike 3. And so on. The difference? In Vancouver, it's admitted there's no new stories out there anymore. Well, very few that are marketable.

Which brings me back to my "school". My alma mater (excuse me while I go run and puke). Who promised to be able to find jobs for us hopeful filmmakers. This, all being in Toronto. The land of "you'll get a screen credit and be able to work with a crew that's going places". Yeah right. It's only the directors in Toronto (ok the producers too) who make money off of indies. We all laughed at the sequels and the remakes, but now I see.

They make me money. I can live off of dollars. You can't off of freebie film credits.

So, to all of you in Toronto, who thought you're better than me, that got in with all those cool Toronto rape artists Indie Producers, I solemly salute you.

Good luck in your unpaid endeavours.
Saturday, July 23, 2005
Nothing but filler

Seeing as I had a 70 hour work week, my brain is not in the mode for making you piss your pants laughing (well the few of you that find my tripe funny). Anyhow, as such, this is stolen directly from Silk, who blatantly lied about her results. Feel totally free to take the piss out of her for that.

As for my TRUE results...


You are elegant, withdrawn, and brilliant.
Your mind is a weapon, able to solve any puzzle.
You are also great at poking holes in arguments and common beliefs.

For you, comfort and calm are very important.
You tend to thrive on your own and shrug off most affection.
You prefer to protect your emotions and stay strong.

The World's Shortest Personality Test
Wednesday, July 20, 2005
Ode to a dearly departed Canadian

Yes, it's true. A fine Canadian actor, who was a cast memeber of the Star TrekTM saga of television shows, has passed on.

In fact, he was on the cast of the original Star TrekTM.

Really and truly.

All masts in Canada shall be lowered.

Honest.

Really.

Truly.

Can you tell I'm trying to waste space yet?

Because I am.

I just want all this text to run off the bottom of your screen as to make you scroll down.

Why do I want you to scroll down?

Why you ask?

Then why don't you scroll down already.

Please?

Pretty please?

Well, it still is a sad day. James "Scotty" Doohan (b. 3 March 1920, Vancouver, BC, d. 20 July 2005) has passed on, from Parkinson's disease.



For shame, all those who thought this may be William Shatner. For shame.

In spite, here's his pic...



All kidding aside, Rest in Peace James Doohan.
Tuesday, July 19, 2005
Get a haircut, and get a real job

Ahhh yes, the words of the "caringTM" parent. But in this crazy world of ours today, there's too much bling out there to impulse us and take our money away. And what's left seems to take our $900/month for rent on a bachelor pad, and another $500/month for food. All this being in the Canadian city better known as America Jr. Yes this is the harsh reality of living in Toronto. As such, my only choice was to get the haircut, and get a real job.

Thusly, I moved as far away as I could. Vancouver. And within a short month, I have now worked 1 day on Smallville. And they called me back.

Just as a discalimer, I'm not saying anything about what went on. I don't want to be that guy

Like Homer, for spoiling Empire on the queue waiting to see it outside the theatre.

Anyhow, I don't have to get a haircut or a real job. I can just be a Toys 'R Us kid!
Sunday, July 17, 2005
1/2 way through film orientation

And my heart is filled with joy. And by joy, I really mean utter contempt for the powers that be. If it wasn't a particular union requirement, I would never have even wasted $1.00 on this absolute joke of a course.

First off, the teacher, who is an AD with the DGC here, doesn't teach. We got a yellow manual with a few other photocopies, and just read through it. For 5 straight hours. Then we wrote an open book test.

Now before I indulge myself in questions SIMILAR to those on the test, I will say this. More than half of those there seemed completly indifferent to what was being taught, and those who I talked to had no real film training/experience/desires to be a creative head or anything the like. They just know they make good money shooting on union sets. Hell $24.41 per hour (working a 14 hour day average, with time and a half, double and triple time) can make some very serious MonopolyTM money coin. $450+ per DAY. But aye, there's the rub. 14 hour days. 5-6 days per week. It can put strain on all aspects of your life, and really should only be attempted by SERIOUS PEOPLE. You should have seen the faces of half the "class" drop when they heard that. It's like that phrase...

"You mean I have to work??"

Anyhow, for an aspiring Director, film Boffin/Geek, and film school high honours graduate, the test was so easy I could also complete a crossword and a number puzzle in one of the free periodicals during the 20 minute time alottment for the test. Which consists of questions like, but not exactly, the following:

Who is in charge of the overall lighting and look of the film:
A. Sound Mixer
B. Weapons Wrangler
C. Director of Photography
D. Script Supervisor

What is meant by the term ACTION?

True or false: The only place that narcotics are allowed legally on a union production is in the actor's trailers.

Let's face it. ANYBODY could pass this test. Though it took some people more than 20 minutes, with an open book, to answer 20 questions as such. God I wish I could have just taken the test without the course at IATSE. I could have been working earlier. But alas, the justice here is I don't have to reprove myself as a PA. I get to make close to $500 a day wrapping electrical cable.
Saturday, July 16, 2005
The one where he makes fun of himself

Yup. This post is mildly personal. Anyhow, I believe things culminated when a *cough* certain nameless Film Union *cough* IATSE 891 *cough*, who is in need of technicians in a booming Vancouver film market right now, still adhere's to old, slower than the government timetables regarding processing permitee applications. And with all the politics inherent, and all the mixed signals and depleting funds, I took a job.

In construction.

Running a jackhammer for three straight days.

Which is exactly what I was trying to get away from. I will say, for the last three weeks, it's been sheer hell being by the phone, waiting for that ELUSIVE CALL.

That brings me to the news today, 2 pieces good, 1 bad, the one bad being the one I make fun of myself (Hat Tip to Stigmata for complete and unauthorized use of his "The One Where... blog beginnings). And just to be a pain, I shall deliver good, then bad, then good again.

The Good News, Episode IV - A New Hope

After 4 hours of blinding back pain jackhammering joy this morning, I quickly pulled my mobile out from my pocket to quickly check the time. At this point I realize that I missed a call (yup a jackhammer is that loud AND vibrating), and in my constant source of hope, checked my voicemail. It was IATSE dispatch. They wanted me to call back ASAP. Now as a little background, the dispatch is the office in the union that sends you to your jobs.

I'M BEING SENT TO A JOB! QUEEN'S ONCE! QUEEN'S TWICE! HOLY JUMPING JESUS CHRIST! RIM, RAM, GOD DAMN, SON OF A BITCH, SHIT, FUCK!

And with all that excitement, that brings me directly to

The Bad News, Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back

In my sudden surge of glee as life returns to my body after being sucked by all the negativity in the universe, I drop the phone. Before exiting voice mail. And do remember. This is Vancover. British Columbia (yeah there's one in Washington State which is a cheap rip off - it's not a nuclear weapons free zone like us).



And since this is Vancouver, the likelihood of rain is in the ballpark of 100%. Statistical errors are about 0%. What does this mean?

My mobile phone hit the puddle, dove right in and took a swim. All completely involuntarily. Damn these great highs I get. And no, it's NOT the weed. Honest.

Now I've got to wait another hour to call them back. And make that closer to 90 minutes. Because in the Lynn Valley part of North Vancouver, pay telephones are a species nearing extinction. But regardless, this leads to the whelm of brilliant news.

The Good News, Episode III - Revenge of the Sith

Because I'm a Sith at heart, not a Jedi.



I'm on the auxillary list for IATSE for lighting technicians. And the only reason I'm not a permittee yet is my old luck still haunting me, as I applied more than likely just after the monthly review of candidates. So it's not long now. And, to bring more hope, by letting the hate flow through you, by some dark side of the force miracle keeping things alive, my phone is now working after a day's worth of airing out.

Also, please notice on the side, as my tremendous thanks to both Telus and Kyocera for delivering me a phone that can survive my idiocy, I am plugging their service.

And just in time to possibly work on X-Men 3.
FINALLY

THE ROCK



HAS COME BACK TO VANCOUVER

Wednesday, July 13, 2005
The babies stopped crying

Yes, there is light at the end of the tunnel. The NHL and the NHLPA have come to terms on an agreement, in principle, on a new collective bargaining agreement.
But I still feel antsy about the whole "in principle" thing. It seems like a situation I remember from the ever foggy Golden Words days of university.



MARGE
Homer, IN THEORY, having an elephant as a pet is a bad idea.

HOMER
In theory Marge. In theory, communism works. IN THEORY.

Well, you can get the idea. Everyone's jumping for joy. Yay hockey's back. IN THEORY. The players have yet to OK it and the owners have yet to ratify it. But it's not going to stop rampaging hordes of Canucks fans buying up tons of overprice tickets. Me, though I'm happy Vancouver's seat tickets, on average, are $100 per seat less than those of the Make Me Laughs Maple Leafs, owners, if your fans are this loyal, pay them back. And pay them back huge.

Bring the cup back to Canada. Vancouver would be nice, but just don't confuse anyone from Toronto from being 100% Canadian.
Tuesday, July 12, 2005
Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince Episode II - Attack of the Lawyers

As you all know (well at least from having read a previous post of mine), 14 copies of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince have been "accidentally sold" to customers of the Supercentre right here in our very own pot smoking town of Coquitlam, BC. It definitely seems as though wherever I go, funTM always seems to follow. Well, the 14 leaked Harry Potter books are continuing on their saga.

It seems that those lucky bastards those lucky gits who got the copies (yeah, yeah, I'm a fan... I've already checked into H.A. - Harry Potter Anonymous) are now under court order to "not reveal the plot of the book or any details." So essentially, they're under court order not to be "THAT GUY."

And by that guy, I mean



Yup. Just like Homer, who as a twenty-something, blew the whole plot of the Star Wars saga, just after seeing The Empire Strikes Back, to the lineup of people waiting to see the next show. Do we really need a court injuction for that? Come on, who's gotta be "that guy".

From what has been officially released to the media, yet another character bites the dust. So, as a public service to A Golden World's readers (yes, all ten of you), I would like to open the floor as to who bites the bullet in this one. The only two with immunity until Harry's seventh book are Harry and Voldemort He who must not be named. So, that leaves

Hermione
Ron Weasley (Please please please die already)
Snape
Lupin
Moody
McGonagall
Dumbledore (whom, though with my love of the idea of Ron dying, is the most probably as the next to join the already staggering Harry Potter death toll).

And finally, just to be a pain, here's my leak of some vital, illegal Harry Potter data. The cover for the next book.



And just wait. A couple of more years until book 7, and Harry's bloody demise (hopefully Ron's too).
Monday, July 11, 2005
Things are beginning to turn around

Yup. A more detailed, and less humourous take on the events of the last week can be found at the blog of my better half, the Yorkshire Angel. It seems IATSE is playing a big joke on me, or at least as our housemate Simon has led us to believe. Seems they're more in need of Grips and Construction, not as much so for Electrics. Even out west, I'm the butt of so many jokes. Maybe it's karma for me taking the piss out of all the Neo-right wing establishments. I can just see all the Republican, Bush, send our kids to slaughter house Iraq types from south of the border laughing their asses off. And so they should. I laugh my ass off at the idiocy of the concept that a C average student from Texas is chosen over an educated man, not once, but twice. And converting to metric, that's a D- in Canada, so they should laugh at me when I encounter obstacles that make masochists laugh.

But ay, there's the rub. If I'm experiencing bad karma for taking the piss out of the right constantly, maybe they'll experience bad karma for laughing at me, setting my karma back into balance. Check out the recent "facts"

I can now cross a suspension bridge without clenching the ropes holding on for dear life.



The NHL is about to sign a deal bringing a salary cap, but more importantly, games back to an arena near you.

But most important, this Monday on RAW, Rowdy Roddy Piper returned to bring Piper's Pit back to the show.



Some class returns to the WWE. About time. The karma is shifting back into balance.
The three things never to talk with your friends about

Money, Politics, and Religion. And with all the terrorism, Al-Qaeda, Iraq, George W. Bush, and other nonsense going on these days, it's a hot topic. Then I stumbled across this post. It seems a certain Christoph Cardinal Schonborn



who was a supporter of evolutionary theories and Darwinism, has since gone back on his statement, saying that evolution and Catholocism are truly incompatable. To avoid a huge theological debate, you can read the discussion here.

As for me, I remember what a wise man,



Superintendent Chalmers, once said about religion and education.

Prayer has no place between these four walls [a classroom], just as fact has no place within organized religion.
New Harry Potter book leaked

And cripes, this is just TOO close to home. New 'Harry Potter' book leaked, as reported by the CBC, have discovered that last Friday, 15 copies were sold in Coquitlam, BC. Further reading through the article shows the sheer anal retentiveness of the publishers, and ultimately, Ms. (I'm not sure of her marital status, so therefore she's Ms.) J.K. Rowling.

Consider this. The book must have been fully scripted and copies being printed months ago (I'll wager a guess as to about 6 months prior minimum). What on earth is the point in making people wait all this time when we know it's done? Well, it's to advance the hype, and increase sales upon release. Well, my word to Ms. (again I'm still not sure of her marital status) Rowling and all the book publisher types, I have this to say...

HARRY POTTER NEEDS NO MORE HYPE. Aside from the millions of pounds you all made (ok, maybe billions) in book releases, here's the other kicker. All three film adaptations released to date are all in the top 15 in box office gross of all time. Yup, that's another $2.624 Billion US in your pockets. And they've been pre-selling the new Harry Potter book for months on end. How much more hype can you have? Both children and adults alike love the stories. Merchandise. Films. Hell even some sod decided to create Bertie Botts Every Flavour Beans (though all the flavours are totally rancid).

Save yourself all the legal fees trying to fight people leaking the book. Just release it as soon as it's done. That's George Lucas's philosophy. Just don't get into his retarded habit of remaking the films every 20 years as technologies in film improve. Because Greedo shooting first is so irreperably stupid. My nerves are shot from all this (and not by Greedo either). But just by wanting to be through this leak crap, be able to go to Chapters on Saturday, picking up a copy, and reading it (hopefully before the Yorkshire Angel can get to it.

If we have this for the seventh and final installment in the Harry Potter series, I'll just have to spoil the ending for you all. Harry dies ridding the earth of Lord Voldemort ... erm... He Who Must Not Be Named.

Oh... damn... please don't sue me...
Sunday, July 10, 2005
The window of opportunity is open.

I HAVE FILM WORK!! Woo hoo!!

Back in the film school days, I NEVER, EVER thought I'd be happy working as a PA (Production Assistant, or Gopher). And for any of you who are in the "is it Smallville" mode, that show hasn't gone to camera yet, but who knows? To clear up any confusion about the whole subject, I'd like to bring up a few lessons learned from my money laundering scheme film school days.

1. Watch ALL (and yes, all) the credits when you go to the theatre to watch a film. To the point where the cheesey "slide-show" pre-pre-film advertising makes a re-appearence. Why? First off, as someone trying to forge a living working on films, it's only respectful to view the credits of all who worked on a film. Secondly, and more importantly, and here's the part you may want to pay attention to, ALL WANT THE DIRECTOR'S JOB.

And I, your 'umble writer, am no different. I want to direct also. I've written a pile of short films, and I'm getting to a point of wanting to shoot them. But, to make a living as a director, I have to shoot 2, and get them into recognized festivals, before any bodies in Canada with money will even LOOK at me. That will take some time. As such, I've listened to the next piece of advice...

2. Commit yourself to another discipline in film. Or get a day job. And since I'm overqualified for any day job less sales or designing anti-vibrational vehicle door and trunk engagement and hitch systems, I might as well do something with my $20,000+ education. After a long battle between Cinematography and Editing, I've chosen Cinematography professionally (hell there's too many computer geeks who've taught themselves AVID by pirating the software, so there's tons of independant competition). And in order to work in film in Cinematography/Camera/Lighting/Grip, you need to be in the union, as the following equation usually applies to film.

3. Union Jobs = Paid + fed well; whereas Independent film = Creative head screen credit + luke warm pizza + worst set coffee ever. Yup. Good old Scott told us that. 90% of set coffee is 100% thumbs down (as a note to film wannabe's, a stop at Tim Horton's before you reach set is mandatory). And having gone to school and being living in Toronto (at that time) where the number of union jobs has dropped dramatically (thanks to Mike Harris and Ah-nuld for messing that up) the union is barely letting the odd permittee back in it's doors.

In Toronto. However, in Vancouver, in the stunningly gorgeous and beautiful province of British Columbia, the exact opposite is true. So, as you all (well the regulars. For those of you who hit here from Blog Explosion and actually ARE reading... thank you BTW) we packed our things in my Cavalier, and drove 4,500 km (2,700 miles) across Canada to get here. I should have done it ages ago, except for something that somebody famous in Canada (old ski friend/instructor-ish) Nancy Greene (Canada's female athlete of the century btw) told me... it's not what you know, or who you know, but WHO knows you. And discovering a long lost cousin out here (as well as an Uncle) in the industry, the time was ripe.

Being here now, I've discovered something bizzare. I am, as again the frequent readers know, a Habs fan. Having my whole family (Mom's and Dad's sides) being from the Montreal area, it's in the blood. But I actually feel a dilemma.

WHO DO I CHEER FOR WHEN THE HABS ARE IN TOWN AGAINST THE CANUCKS?

But wait, I never, EVER had that issue in Toronto. Why? One could state the poor record of the Make Me Laughs Maple Leafs over the period I attached myself to the coolest game on earth (Bettman where's my plug money), the 80's. Over that decade, their best record was in 1989-90, where they had a record of 38-38-4. Just at .500. God they sucked. Every season they struggled, and only occasionally made the playoffs. But in the 90's they got better. So why didn't I cheer. I must have been loyal to Montreal. Even so, I couldn't cheer the Jays, the Argos, nor the [veloci-]Raptors. Something's gotta give. I can cheer the Lions, and soon the Canucks (as soon as the deal is signed). It can't be just that.

But over the last few days it's dawned on me. After our last CBA in the NHL, free agency ran rampid. The only Canadian team to benefit? Toronto. But why? Montreal and Vancouver are just as big. But yet I soon learned...

Toronto is the only city marketable in the United States. And when I say marketable, I really mean the only city Americans really know is in Canada.

And it all hits me today. I should have been here a long, long time ago. Why things didn't work out, well, simply put, Toronto is my negative centre. Everything I was, I achieved outside of that city. I did university away. I ran businesses away. Never in my life has being in a place felt so right. And to all those "Leaf Fans", who are gonna lose 1/2 their team because the Leafs are going to have shuffle to adhere to the cap, I have just this to say...



GO CANUCKS!
Friday, July 08, 2005
What I have to say about the London Attacks

What I am about to post is not going to follow the take the lighter side tone this blog usually takes, rather I shall be serious here. Also, as a bit of a disclaimer, I'm going to hold back anything, but just say what I have to. If you feel you cannot read, then DON'T.

It is truly sad that any terrorist attacks occur. Victims who did nothing wrong less being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Families and friends who again, did nothing wrong. And why? Being someone who wishes peace, happiness, love and respect amongst all whom he encounters, I don't have the context to divulge into the psyche of an orchestrator of such an event. I can barely skim the surface. The one thing I can say...

WHOEVER YOU ARE, YOU ARE A COWARD. If this is supposed to be an act of war, shouldn't you be fighting the UK's ARMY? No, you have to attack peaceful, innocent bystanders in the stead of not an army, but rather, your courage.

I do have to applaud the UK's stance so far. In a statement released by the Queen, she summed things up by saying "They will not change our way of life" and that things must resume to normal. It is a mature stance to take against an act of terrorism.

Some could take notice of this. And this little bit that I'm about to say. The sole purpose of terrorism, despite what the media has made the public believe as of late, is to inspire fear and terror. It is not an act of war. One cannot declare war against a feeling, like that of terror. All war does to the masses is makes them more fearful and terrified. Thus, just by logical definition, one cannot go to war against it. It's just like the snowball effect.

I commend both Londoners and the whole of the UK in being courageous enough to work through the terrorist attacks, rather than let the fear change their way of life. It isn't weapons, new laws, relegation of rights, fighting forces, or disobeying the United Nations that will keep us in a society free of terror and persecution, but rather our courage and unwavering belief that change can be accomplished in a less violent forum.
Thursday, July 07, 2005
Attack in London

I never know what to say for these things, but as many of you already know, there were terrorist attacks in London today.

To those affected by this tragedy, my deepest condolences.

To the perpetrators, I wish a swift and just retribution.

In respect for the victims, I shall not post for 24 hours from this one.
Waiting for the phone to ring Episode II - Attack of the Chips

I must say, the whole NHL strike thing has created one positive, at least as I see it. With all that hockey not being broadcast on our host of sports channels (TSN, The Score, 5 Sportsnet channels, and the CBC), they have had to find something to fill that airtime. The last time we had a lockout, we got loads of figure skating, curling, and of course billiards and darts.

WHAT THE DUECE? There's actually a market for WATCHING billiards and darts? Geez, and I thought watching paint dry golf was bad enough.

Well, this time around, the broadcasters did something smart. They hooked onto an ever growing fad. Texas Hold'em poker. I just pray the screen can last. And not for excessive usage. But rather for the assault of amorphous blobs being projected at the screen. Yup, I take my poker seriously.

Not that I've ever played. I'm hoping somebody can teach me. At least it gives me something to do until the slowpokes IATSE calls.
Wednesday, July 06, 2005
It's hell waiting for the phone to ring

And IATSE told me they were really busy. I know, I'm getting paranoid, but I did come out here to work, not to just lounge around. To avoid this becoming a hugely paranoid rant, most of the films are just starting to go to camera, so as such, work should be coming my way.

Soon.

I hope.

Please.

Anyhow, to pass the time, well at least when the Yorkshire Angel is using the PC, I've settled on my new Telus phone, which has an old addictive game from my past.



TETRIS

Yes, that evil yet addictive game designed by Russian Alexey Pajitnov. And for me, it came out just in time to be the big rage in University. Ahh, all the hours wasted not studying, not going out, being locked up in my room watching blocks drop.

I AM THE TETRIS KING!!!! lol.

But yet in my boredom, I decided to read the credits for Tetris on my phone. I was rather disturbed to see this...

Please Play responsibly. Take a rest between levels, and stop playing if your hands feel tired.

What the duece? What does your hands getting tired have to do with Tetris? Well, except all us geeks who played back in university could get laid, and... ahem.

But there's something missing from that warning. Something us old Tetris junkies suffered from incredibly. Tetris Dreams. And you think I'm kidding. Just try playing Tetris for 3 months straight. Then you'll fall asleep seeing blocks fall down your dreams all night. And wake up screaming when they get stacked up too high at the top.

Still doubt me? Check here, here, here, and here.

Make the blocks stop falling already!
Monday, July 04, 2005
Maybe I should go digital

The revolution is upon us. Film is being replace by digital in every medium. Well, except cinema. Those stuffy Hollywood Bastards employers of mine *wink* refuse to let cinema move progressively toward the digital age.

On a completely unrelated note, I do notice that my old friend, dear Stiggy put out a call AGES ago, for picutres of friendly type people. I sent him some, but with the mild suggestion that he needed something a little "newer" (though many pics there now are old rehashes).

To finally satisfy that need, Dawn and I took these pictures of each other in Revelstoke, BC:





So that's what happens to film when it's shot out in the mountains. Time to get a digicam.
Office 2005 Released! Boo Hooray!

Mastermind criminal Microsoft Chief Exec Bill Gates announced that as of today (and tomorrow in the US as apparently they're celebrating a "holiday" about their "independence" and "freedom") that Microshaft MicrosoftTM will be releasing their latest version of OfficeTM, Office 2005TM.

Screenshots of the new version can be seen here...



Wow, it can read bosses minds? Now I can actually figure out what jobs need to be done with the actual required time needed, not the "do it over the weekend" crap you usually get.



So THAT'S why I keep crashing.



Holistic and naturopathic virus elimination.



New AI features can help you figure out just what to say (or do).

Thanks to Jake for this one.
Sunday, July 03, 2005
Give yourself to the Dark Side...

Let Dorkdom rule! Check out the lovely Star Wars bits I've stumbled across (can you tell I'm in withdrawal yet)?



Thanks to Ang, Darth Vader uses the force to read your mind.

And lastly, a couple of animated Star Wars fan films

here and here.

The last two are brilliant, aren't they? I'm not going to give them away, so you're gonna have to get off of your tush and CLICK THE LINK. And you'll need Flash as well. Though what the fuck is it with the Starbucks ads? Being on the west coast, I see that damn "coffee shop" everywhere. Why on earth do they need advertising? They have 100% of the Vancouver and Seattle markets already.

It's the borg of coffee dammit!

RUN!
Saturday, July 02, 2005
I can't believe I'm doing meme's again...

But alas, it's true, I am. Maybe I can use this to "replace" the bland, corporate BloggerTM user information section.

MAYBE

Alas, here we go...

Got this one from Heather:

1. What time did you get up this morning? About 10 AM (yup I'm lazy, though now thoroughly adjusted to the new time zone). Though I miss seeing Second Cups out here. It's all the Borg Starbucks. Grr. Though their Zen Tea is nice.

2. Diamonds or pearls? Neither. Christ they're expensive. Do I look like I'm made of money?

3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema? Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. Yes. Anakin is Darth Vader. Can you say duh? I've known for the better part of 22 years. As for the film, the Yorkshire Angel liked it, though groans about it now. As for me, I think the film redeems the last two weak offerings, giving us what we really wanted.

4. What is your favorite TV show? I'm Canadian, so it would have to be Hockey Night in Canada. Except I didn't get to see it this year. Bettman, you git, get this deal done already.

5. What did you have for breakfast? Mmmmm... 64 slices of american processed cheese... drools.... oops, that's what I ate between midnight and 6 AM.

6. What is your middle name? Anakin? Stewie? Ermm... it's Howard. Fuggeddaboutit.

7.What is your favorite cuisine? Is there any other cuisine opposed to Italian? My point exactly.

8. What food do you dislike? I ate some bad curried chicken when I was 16 and got a bad case of food poisoning from it, so that. I can't go into Bombay Behl anymore without puking on the server.

9. What is your favorite chip flavor? Italian flavoured Doritos... mmmmmmmmmm... almost tastes like pizza.

10. What is your favorite CD at the moment? Well, we "LISTENED" to Kill Bill vol. 1 all across the country, though now with things set up here, I'm listening to a lot of Barenaked Ladies, Pet Shop Boys, and Metallica's rendition of the Imperial March from Star Wars. "Ja prunie dolpot, Slimo!"

11. What type of car do you drive? 2001 Black Chevrolet Cavalier 2-door 4-speed piece of shit that slows down driving up the mountains between Kelowna and Vancouver.

12. Favorite sandwich? Classic Italian submarine from QUIZNOS cuz TOASTED TASTES BETTER (and they keep Don Cherry employed during the NHL strike).

13. What characteristic do you despise? Self-centeredness. And slow driving in front of me.

14. Favorite item of clothing? My Stewie Griffin baseball jersey.

15. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you go? Hell I could vacation in the mountains of Beautiful British Columbia for ages, though the Yorkshire Angel would like to return to the UK to visit family. So there.

16. What color is your bathroom? It used to be white.

Since 17 has been eliminated, I've added a bonus question at the bottom

18. Where would you retire to? Kelowna, BC. The best climate in all of Canada.

Since 19 has been eliminated, I've added a bonus question at the bottom

20. What was your most memorable birthday? Last year being able to celebrate with the Yorkshire Angel was nice. And a Geordie even called. That's more celebrating than I've had in ages.

Since 21 has been eliminated, I've added a bonus question at the bottom

22. Favorite sport to watch? Have you not been paying attention?? HOCKEY!

23. Who do you least expect to send this back to you? This is posted on a BLOG!! I'd tag someone, but I doubt they'd do it.

24. Person you expect to send it back first? See above already. I ain't typing that again.

25. What fabric detergent do you use? Whatever works. I'm a GUY (hold on let me check)...

Yeah I am. Ask me what tools I use (like DeWalt drills).

26. Coke or Pepsi? Well, since there's an ad campaign right now to catch people in promiscuous situations drinking Pepsi that has got me paranoid, I'll have a Pepsi please.

27. Are you a morning person or a night owl? Pfffft. What's sleep?

28. What is your shoe size? After metric conversion (double it and add 30), 50.

29. Do you have any pets? Not at the moment, though I want a cat, and the Yorkshire Angel wants a dog, we'll probably have a fish tank.

30. Any new and exciting news you'd like to share with your family or friends? Erm, you all do read right?

I'M IN VANCOUVER NOW! NOT TORONTO (Ed.'s note thank god!).

31. What did you want to be when you were little? In film. Funny how much things change, they stay the same.

Okay I lied. I couldn't find more questions, so I'm adding another meme.

Found at Tales from the Dorkside

10 years ago… I finished University, and completed my summer-long "alcoholic binge recovery program", which was a total failure.

5 years ago… I just started doing business in Los Angeles, California. Still bitter, alone, and single, and missed a flight to New York from LA on Sept. 11, 2001.

1 year ago… Had returned to film school to change gears in my life after doing years of sales. Just began my relationship with the Yorkshire Angel (and I'm getting tired of pasting the link so go to the sidebar. Git.

Yesterday… Moved into my temporary permanent residence in Burnaby, BC.

Today… Went up to Mt. Burnaby Conservation area today, on a very rare clear afternoon, and laughed heartily at two parachuters training on a side of the mountain.

Tomorrow… Having brunch with my cousin. Aside from that the Yorkshire Angel probably wants to spend money on candles. We have three right now. I sense in a month there will be 100.

1 year from now… Married to Dawn. Be working on several feature films a year, working on getting into the camera union, towards being a DOP. Shooting 2 short films a year. More bizzare than David Lynch.

5 years from now… Canada's premiere DOP (that's Director of Photography, or Cinematographer). Also quietly working on bizzare, Lynch-esque films.

10 years from now… Worked with Lynch, Spielberg, Lucas, influencing their visual style. Yup, I'm dreaming here.

5 snacks I enjoy… Roasted Maple Leaf early exits from the playoffs (oh, you mean food) Guinness (the beer that eats like a meal), Stella Artois, popcorn, pretzels, and pasta (yeah I make a big bowl as a snack).

5 songs I know all the words to… Keep on Rocking in the Free World - Neil Young, Enjoy the Silence - Depeche Mode, Nothing Else Matters - Metallica, Crazy Train - Ozzy Osbourne, Kyle's Mom is a Big Fat Bitch - Eric Cartman.

5 TV shows I watch… Hockey Night In Canada, Family Guy, King of the Hill, the Simpsons, Rick Mercer's Monday Report.

5 things I would do with a hundred million dollars… Pay off my debts, build a huge film studio, shoot something all on video just to say fuck you to all those who believe only in film, buy some property in Kelowna, and buy Dawn some roses.

5 locations I would run away too… Kelowna, Kamloops, Whistler, Banff, and Revelstoke. Why leave when you have everything right here?

5 things I like doing… watching cinema, making cinema, anything Dawn and I can do together, exploring the mountains here, filling out meme's in the not so serious frame of mind.

5 things I won’t wear… Panties, blouses, bras, a Boston Red Sox Jersey, or a Toronto Maple Leafs Jersey.

5 movies I’ve watched recently… Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Lord of the Rings somewhere in there, the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and of course, Killfilm (not Kill Bill, you've gotta ask me about this one).

5 famous people I’d like to meet... David Lynch, Tim Burton, Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, and Joe Sakic (hell he should be around here, he's from Burnaby).

5 of the biggest joys of the moment... Knowing that I'm finally making it in film, seeing the smile and glow Dawn has, breathing in clean air, enjoying our close proximity to nature, and the best bud in the world.

DOOBY DOOBY DOO! HERE!!
A few pics from the major relocation

As some of you may (or may not) know, A Golden WorldTM has moved it's vast global reporting offices (ok my PC, but hey) from the negative centre of the universe, aka Toronto, for the beautiful mountains of British Columbia. And seeing as this was a move for my professional (read actually getting paid for once) development, I needed the gas-guzelling beast of a car I drive, so the Yorkshire Angel and myself drove 4,500 km to reach Vancouver.

Needless to say, some of the sites were gorgeous, and some just sucked ass.

Like Saskatchewan. It's flat. And the majority of the residents are neo-conservative pro-Bush Canada should be fighting in Iraq types. Gits. Just because there's nothing to do but complain about the Saskatchewan Rough Riders, find a better target for your pent up rage. This guy looks enough of a dork...



As such, the only thing of interest to photograph in Saskatchewan was the Yorkshire Angel, who, positioned ever so carefully on an automobile, can compete to be the highest point in the province.



Looks as though Monty can't call her, erm.. well, a bad name for a short person again.

Now for something positive.



God I just love the views around here. Mountains as far as the eyes can see. And if you get high enough, you can't see your hand in front of your face. But enough about the pot. Or the clouds. Take your pick.

I AM THE LIZARD KING...

That is all.