Thursday, June 29, 2006

New Beginnings

Aaaaaah, who feels old now? This is me, last night, at Boston Pizza. After several drinks, I decided to tackle a heap of legal documents that were thicker than the bible. I already signed the mortgage papers last week, but these papers were the official "I OWN PROPERTY" papers....thankfully I had Austen there to make sure I didn't sign my soul to the Devil or anything like that (after a few glasses of wine and the most intensely spicy ceaser ever, I think I started signing the menu).
Nonetheless, now I am officially a homeowner. And in less than 3 weeks I will begin the new chapter in my life: living downtown. Which will hopefully bring some much coveted change to my life as I know it....

"Out of the darkness and into the sun
But I won't forget all the ones that I loved
I'll take a risk, take a chance, make a change
And breakaway" Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Goodbye Tank, Hello Fill-in-Blank

This is me...and my new car "Fill-in-the-Blank". Yes, that's right, I have a new car. It's a spiffy, red Neon that's perfect for zipping in and out of traffic and for parallel parking (which I'll be doing plenty of once I move downtown, and I'm real crap at it too). But the best part is that I think it's a car that suits my personality: It's bright and shiny (like my face on a hot summer day), it's red (the color I turn when I'm in traffic...and also my face on a hot summer day) and it smells nice (as do I, when it's not a hot summer day).
Unlike The Tank....





This a picture of Leanne and The Tank on "one" of the fateful days that The Tank broke down. At school of all places. I was driving down the hill when the brakes failed...and then the steering locked...and it looked like I was going to die. Thankfully I was able to sweep the car into the parking lot and run it into a parking space (and when I mean run, I mean only the concrete pillar at the end stopped me). Nonetheless, I still managed to pay for parking and go to class, calling the tow truck afterwards. My car ended up getting $1400 worth of repairs on problems I (and probably it) never knew it had.
Of course, that wasnt the first problem I had with The Tank. The CD player never worked properly and when a song skipped, you were stuck with it forever. At one point the mufflers nearly fell off. Weeks later, my wheels were declared unsafe for the road (not my$1000 snow tires, those are golden...btw, anyone want to buy them?). Then the growly noises started. Then I ran out of gas on the Coquihalla. Then I ran out of gas while parked overnight at Ross and Jeff's (how does that happen?).
Needless to say, the tank was fussy, loud, unreliable, large, moody and couldn't hold a tune. Much like me. Hmmmmm.

PS My new car needs a new name! Any suggestions? So far, I have a friend (you know who you are) telling me I should break the last N off of NEON and call it "Neo"...

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Cambie...

is always a fun time, no matter what. Even though the line-up is a mile-long at 10pm...even though people like to lock you outside...even though everytime you go to the woman's bathroom you overhear drunken, Stephen Harper bashes/Jean Chretien adorations. Tis a good mix.







Robyn and I, well on our way to get wasted





Ross and Jeff, well on their way to getting wasted


And Lauren's playing catch-up too

Tsawwassen is hard to spell...


and it can be beautiful...



















as these pictures of Boundary Bay attest...








...that said, I am glad I'm leaving. (Can't you see it on my face?)

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

At the mental institution, where I belong



Yes, it’s true. Last night I was finally admitted to the mental institution, a place I should have gone to a long time ago.

OK, well there was another reason that I was going… I had my first “interview” for my job at the Indie Film Alliance. Now, so far, I have done an interview with an established producer, Dennis Fallon, who is shooting his first feature as director out in Kansas City, MO. You can read the interview here: Fallon Article
But that interview was done over the phone, something my jangling nerves could handle.

That wasn’t the case last night. I wrangled an interview with William B. Davis (AKA Cancerman/Cigarette Smoking Man for all you X-files fans) and was to pop down to the set of Matthew Perry’s new film “Numb” which was shooting out at Riverview MENTAL hospital out in Coquitlam. I was to come by sometime between 6 and 11pm and there was a chance I could meet Matthew Perry as well.

AHHHH. So, I freaked out. I get nervy about these kinda things. I used to get nervous just interviewing the local crappy “politicians” in Kamloops. And now this was an actual actor on an actual set. Yeah, I know I work at a film set, but this was different somehow. For one it was at a mental institution. Maybe I would finally get the help I needed.

So I raced home, got extra batteries for my mp3 voice recorder and camera then raced out to Coquitlam. Then took the wrong highway and ended up in ArmPitt Meadows or something, in the pouring rain. So, after a few U-turns and frantic phone calls to my parents asking where the mental institution was (which reminds me, I should phone them back and let them know I actually wasn’t committing myself), I found the place.

Then the fun began. Driving in the rain, around a creepy, sprawling mental institution, as the sky grew colder and darker by the minute. Finally I just phoned Bill (Yes, I call him Bill now) and he let me know I was on the right track. I found a few trailers and then Trevor, the 3rd…which I assume was the 3rd AD.

The door to a lux trailer swung open and there stood Cancerman, looking happy to see me, for some reason. I stepped into his trailer, sat beside him on his comfy leather sofa and started to awkwardly ask questions (I say awkwardly cuz I feel awkward when I find myself in celebrity’s movie set trailers). But he put me at ease right away. An easy going guy, not at all like the Alien-loving, CIA/FBI-manipulating, Mulder-hating Cancerman from the show. For one, he wasn’t smoking. And for another, he had the demeanor of someone’s highly intelligent and life-loving Grandpa. After I figured out that he wasn’t going to get his alien cronnies to off me, the interview went better than I expected (ei, I didn’t fuck up).

I left a half hour later after he got called to hair and makeup and I snapped a few pics of him getting ready for his upcoming scene with Perry (he plays Perry’s happy-go-lucky father). In the end, I didn’t actually get to see Matthew Perry, but I’m sure that can be arranged. I think one actor interview a day is all I can handle. Anymore than that and I think I would have to be committed after all.

Monday, June 05, 2006

Homeowner, Moi

------The wonderful view of English Bay from the pool/roof deck of MY new West End, Downtown Vancouver apartment------


What you say? Apartment? I thought you were moving to Kerrisdale in an old ladies garden? Ah, yes...that. Well, lets just say what a strange turn of events this week has been. First a job and now a home of my own. It's been a real rollercoaster though, and nothing is as easy as it seems.
But yes. Back to this homeowner thing.
Friday was my first deadline rush at work. I had a million things going on at once. Then my mom phones. She says "I bought you an apartment"....I say, "Uh huh, I'm busy." I hung up the phone and went back to panicking about my work.
As I walked to my car, after staying a half hour overtime, I remembered my mom calling. I called her back. Didn't she say something about an apartment?
Apparently, she was flipping through the newspaper and came across an ad for a studio apartment in the West End of Vancouver. The price was unbelievable. She called up the real estate agent and demanded to see it, even though the open house was on sunday.
To make a long story short, she loved it and put in an offer.
*************************************
Saturday rolls around. The real estate agent phones. Acting as our buyer, she informs us that another apartment in the building has just become available, a one-bedroom only for 17,000$ more. We get excited. A studio is great but a one-bedroom is even better. And we can see both apartment's tommorow. I'm so taken aback by all these developments, that only after slamming back a few ceasers at Scruffy's in New West, does it all hit me. I might just be a homeowner. Then we start arguing about Israel, Palestine and WMDs and I forget all about the apartment.
**************************************
Sunday greets us with groans. Nursing a massive hangover, I wrangle Ross into accompanying me to the open house.
I park on Pacific Avenue and notice the beach is steps away, framed by a grove of suspicious palm trees. We walk up the hill two blocks and turn on to Burnaby Street. Busy Burrard Street is a few blocks East. Happening Davie Street is one block North. And in front of us is the building, recently white-washed and looking clean. While waiting for my parents to show up, we learn we aren't alone. There are Russians interested in the apartment...a group of gay men....a young couple...I feel like fighting them all off and yelling "IT'S MINE!" It doesn't help that all of us nearly get stuck in the elevator together.
But the apartment is nice...me likey...it's small, of course, a 430 sq. foot bachelor, but the way its laid out makes it livable. It has hardwood floors, bright walls, open windows, new counters and a really cool vintage phone that I'm hoping is included in the price.
Then we are wisked upstairs to the other apartment de jour. It's also nice, much bigger obviously since its more than one room. But it seems darker somehow. And Ross points out theres no way he could fit in the shower...unless its some sort of glorified nipple washer.
Then we go to the roof. Oh my God. The roof. There is a pool...some palm trees and fancy chairs. And a view that stretches forever. Surreal. Forget the apartment, I'll just live up there.
But we don't forget the apartment, and despite some shifty Chinese real estate agent thats hanging around listening, my parents make their 2nd offer in as many days, this one for the one-bedroom, while still having the studio by default. It looks certain.
A few hours later I get a call from my mother. The shifty real estate agent had heard (eavesdropped) our offer, went to his client and bid ELEVEN THOUSAND MORE than what we offered, which was the asking price. There goes the one bedroom. I spend the evening knocking back pitchers of beer at The Cambie and trying to forget the shaky situation I'm in. One minute it looked like we had everything. Now it looks like we might walk away with nothing but just a taste of what could have been. Bring on the beer.
*****************************************
After the 6th pitcher my mother calls back. The one-bedroom is gone. The studio is mine.
*****************************************
My mother calls me today while I'm driving (more like racing) home after work. The studio going in my name. I'm getting a mortgage too, co-signed by my Dad. I'm going to be a property owner, a homeowner. The real esatet agent just left my house after having us sign the papers.
I wonder when it's going to hit me that this is kind of a big deal.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

I'm in the movies, I'm in the movies....

This, my friends, is where I work. Yes, that's right. I got the job at Lions Gate Studios. Why and how? That I can not say. Dumb, blind luck I suppose. Only I don't believe in luck...I believe we make our own luck. And perhaps in this case, maybe I made my own luck by working hard and being persistant....and charming, bien sur. Plus, the hell I went through with A. Bass's Online Journalism and my years toying with the film industry must have counted for something.
So when did this all happen? Well, I got a second interview on the Monday. The Producer had left a message on my phone, telling me I was "awesome." Now, there is no doubt that I am awesome, but to hear someone else say it was quite something indeed. So I went in for the interview, shaking in my boots, and "looking" smart in a sleek, black business suit (courtesy of Rosco's stylistic opinion). The Producer twisted his computer around and asked if I could upload box office information from IMDB on to the website. I nodded, slightly confused...what exactly was this job again?
Then he asked if I was available. I told him immediately.
"Immediately as in today?" he asked.
I really had nothing planned, so I found myself saying "YES!"
So he sent me away to the nearby Starbucks so I could get something to eat and a coffee. He would call me in a bit and we could get started. I walked out of the office, even more confused. Did I just get a job? Why was that so easy?
Wandering aimlessly through the lot, I ran into Leif, an old high school friend of mine. He's doing stunt work for The 44oo.
"Do you work here?" Leif asked.
"I think so," was my reply.
Half and hour later, after drinking another much needed coffee, The Producer called me back. My first week of work was about to begin.

**************************************************************

My first week of work is now officially over. I am exhausted. Driving from Tswwassen to North Van everyday is no peice of cake. Especially when I am extremely adept and picking streets in which every single pedestrian crossing gets used. Thankfully, the drive from rosco's in New West sometimes takes only a half an hour, so its nice bonus when I stay over. But from Tsawwasen? Holy Crapolla! Over an hour, plus I have to deal with the Massey Tunnel, the Knight Street Bridge and the Second Narrows Bridge. On the plus side, I do feel very businessy having to commute while listening to the Bill Good show at the same time.
So what have I learned during this first week? Being a reporter is hard work...writing under deadline makes me want to pull my hair out...dealing with Dr. Q-tip and other crazy sponsors makes me swear like a sailor....Interviewing film directors can be fun....and having gourmet coffee at the office is like a tonic to the system.
Plus I also learned what my job title is: Director of Media Relations.
How's that for a girl who still hasn't officially graduated yet?


Director of Media Relations, at your service