Thursday, November 29, 2007

Roommate Love

", it's like, yes, drink sketchy things from Mexican men holding shovels..."


"OK, so you're at the nuclear silo, drunk...again..."


PSAs in Canada

Really, when you think about it, Canadians ARE absolutely terrifying.

Friday, November 9, 2007

WGA Striiiiiike

My friend and I went to Fox today where the WGA was having a HUGE protest. Something like 2,000-3,000 people. There were a lot of SGA members there; SGA was making a huge show of solidarity with the WGA.

Basically (and fairly simplistically), everyone is fighting over the revenue from Internet and emerging technologies. About 20 years ago, VHS came around. The big studios and the WGA came to an understanding: no one really knew what the business model would be, so they agreed to 4 cents per DVD (which is much less than what the DGA and SAG members get). In "The Biz" these are called residuals; every time you watch a movie on TV (or on the airplace, etc.) or you see a rerun of your favorite show, the people involved in putting that show together (actors, directors, writers) get money. The writers don't really get a lot, especially compared to the other groups. Seems fair, but there's more going on.

The big studios really don't like the guilds. They make life more difficult and more expensive. (Most actors and writers that belong to guilds are middle-class workers who get their health insurance and retirement through their guilds.) So right now, a lot of people are thinking "This would be a great time to break the guilds." Basically, this means things could get very, very sketchy, and go on for a while. It also means that the studios aren't going to give in easily. With SAG aligning themselves so strongly with WGA, I think it sends a very good message, and hopefully we can have this resolved before it completely destroys the economy of L.A. The last time there was a writer's strike a lot of people left LA, a lot of businesses closed, and people had to move. So let's hope people come to their senses. Now, on to the people you'd recognize supporting the writers!Julia Louis-Dreyfus

Legendary Writer Norman Lear.

This guy was AWESOME. The WGA Avenger.

Seth MacFarlane (Family Guy)

Kevin Rahm (Desperate Housewives, Judging Amy)

Stephen Webber (Studio 60, Wings)

Ron Rifkin (Alias)

I also saw Amanda Peet (with her new kid), Vincent Ventresca, Curtis Armstrong, William Baldwin, and was standing right next to David Fury.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Quotes 2

"So Jean Claude VanDam comes up to me crying and I said...'Jean Claude VanDam, why are you crying?'"
~Industry Insider to...Jean Claude VanDam

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Trick or Treat...

or: Adventurous Driving in L.A.

So I've been here a while now, driven a lot in my job as an unappreciated minion...I mean, intern. I've become accustomed to driving in L.A. for the most part. Basically, I assume that every single person on the road is out to kill me but I need to kill them first. However, last Monday was really NOT my day for driving.

Incident #1
I'm picking up lunch for everyone in the office around 1:00, which is prime lunch rush hour for everyone. Parking is heinous here. So I pull in to this small parking lot servicing something like 6 different shops, all of which appear to be insanely busy and there's exactly ONE spot in the whole place. It's a tight squeeze, but I can do it...except whoever parked to my left has left their wheel turned juuuuuuust so that it really messes up my space at a certain point. So I'm admittedly listing a little bit to the right, only I list a little TOO much to the right and I rub--DO NOT HIT--against the car to my right. Now, for anyone that has done this, it's when you cut a corner a little too tightly and rub up against another car's bumper; it leaves a white scratch-looking thing that isn't really a scratch, it's something that buffs out, or in my case, rubs off with my thumb. (For anyone interested, I figured out that the top layer of wax on your car gets disturbed, which is why that white line is there.) Please note there is ABSOLUTELY NO DAMAGE. To either of the cars.

So I stop pulling forward when I realize I'm touching the car to my right. The parking lot attendant guy comes over to see what's taking me so long, so he starts helping me back out and make sure I don't do any *real* damage to the other person's car (or mine). Then the people in the car to the left come out and start pitching a FIT. I'm talking adult temper tantrum here. I'm completely stopped, having a silent conversation with the security guard, when I hear a loud smack of hand-on-metal. I look over and this crazy super-skinny white lady is sitting there smacking my car. She does it again. And again. Then this large black woman comes over and starts ranting, casting aspersions on my ability to drive and telling me to stop moving. Obviously, we're ignoring the fact that I'm not moving, and haven't moved since right before they showed up on the scene. So they eventually conclude, quite logically, that it would be easiest (and less noisy) if they left. So they back out and I straighten up and pull in, no problem.

So I get out to see if there's any damage. There's a thick white mark on the bumper of the car beside me. The guard, who speaks Spanish and broken English, looks at it too. Now, I'm no car expert, but I can look a smooth metal and see if some thing's wrong. I go, "Oh, that's not bad at all." and wipe off the offending white mark that's marring the shiny blue paint job on the car beside me. Cool. My car's actually fine as well, thanks for asking! But the guard tells me, after I filter it, that he wants to write down my license plate number. I told him I'd be more than happy to leave a note on the owner's car with my information. He looks pretty confused about this; maybe people in L.A. don't volunteer such things? Well, as he's trying to figure out what to do, the owner comes up, takes one look at our cars and says "How am I supposed to get in my car?" See, I think it's a good sign when the owner of a car shows up, see two strangers staring at her car, and doesn't see anything wrong with it. So I tell her, in the interest of full disclosure, that I touched her car and nothing happened. So we spend 5 minutes looking over the left side of her rear bumper with a freaking fine tooth comb. All I want is food.

I try to explain, several times, that I didn't actually HIT her car, just rubbed up against it. I showed her where my car touched hers, and she's completely confused by the idea that, yes, one car can touch another without doing any damage, especially if the driver is being careful. But she writes down all of my information--license, address, birthday, favorite color--just in case, I don't know, her bumper mysteriously falls off later on in the day. So I repark my car to give her more room to get in, and retrieve my meal, and think happy thoughts about food because this has been at least a 15 minute ordeal.

Now it's time to leave. The security guy must have been waiting for me to leave, because as soon as I start my engine, he's behind me. Fine, it's a tiny parking lot without a lot of room, so I'm greatful except he really doesn't have to keep telling me there's a car behind me, since it was there when I got in my car and was still there when I turned it on and hadn't moved when I put my car in a preparatory reverse. But I get out fine, and would really like to not go to that place ever again. Bad karma.

Incident #2
After my extremely delicious and well-earned meal, I'm sent to an organic food market in Santa Monica. I find the place, no least there wasn't until I tried to pull into the parking lot (are we sensing a pattern here?). The entrance to the parking lot was on this small side street; there are technically two egresses, but one is Entrance Only and the other is Exit Only. I wanted to turn left into the parking lot from a one-lane street off of a busy road; only a line of cars waiting for a lite blocked the turn to the entrance. I didn't want to back up the road, so I did what I thought was a smart, considerate thing: I pulled forward a little, looped around the car blocking the entrance, into the far lane and turned into the parkinglot. It was something of an abortive U-turn.

I pull into a space, this time without incident, turn to open my door and there's a cop standing there. I literally jumped; I wasn't expecting to see this intimidating motorcycle cop glaring at me. I must have looked completely befuddled because I absolutely was. So he asks me for my license, which I give him. And our conversation went something like this:
Cop: You're from South Carolina?
Me: Ah...yessir.
Cop: Where do you live now? Do you live here?
(by this point I've realized that I've fucked up and pretty much figured out what I did wrong)
Me: Well...I go to school here, just started. I'm still trying to figure out the traffic.
Cop: Do you know why I pulled you?
(brief, ignored thought of You didn't really pull me, I parked...)
Me: Ah, well, I assume I did something wrong.
Cop: You did a U-turn on that road right there.
Me: ah...mmm...ah...OK? (figured it wasn't smart to say It wasn't *really* a U-turn or explain my reasoning)
Cop: Can you do that in South Carolina? Can you do U-turns?
Me: Well...I mean, well yeah. Unless you can't. Like, you're not allowed to.
I'm completely confused because yes you can do that in SC, and I'm just totally mystified by this exchange.
Cop: Well you can't in California. I'm going to let you off this time, but don't do it again. You can't do a U-turn anywhere on that street.
And he just walked off, and I went shopping. Didn't drive to much for the rest of that day. But apparently, the only place you can legally do a U-turn in California is at a cross section. Which to me seems more dangerous than if you just did one on an empty road...