Friday, August 29, 2008

Here we go again!


OK folks, I'm gonna level with ya.


I've gained some weight lately.


Maybe it's not weight that anyone's really noticed, but I'VE noticed and that seems to be all that matters.


And it truly is just a little bit of weight, I guess. Two weeks ago I topped out at 138 and I was horrified. 138, if you remember, was the weight I was around this time last year. Then through a hardcore diet and exercise plan, I managed to lose 8 pounds and a bit more.


But as I started school back in February, I was no longer able to partake in the only calorie-burning exercise I didn't hate, which was spin class. My evening classes knocked out the evening spin sessions and I was left sedentary and disillusioned.


Yes, I did join a gym. But if you are anything like me, you LOATHE the gym and quit after 20 min on the treadmill cuz you are bored and had enough.


I needed the classes, I needed a reason to go and - more than that - I needed a reason to keep going. You can't quit in spin class, you have to endure.


Anyway, so my lack of exercise, combined with a vacation to Maui in which I ate and drank everything in sight (I still think it was worth it..maybe) and then a total relapse in diet led me to eventually gain all my weight back.


That's not to say I haven't been trying to lose it since school finished. I have. It's just my motivation levels were quite low. I watched what I ate, had a spin class or gym session here and there but it wasn't consistent and it certainly wasn't enough to start (or re-start) a habit.


So I've realized that in order for me to lose weight, I can't do it properly, which is to say slowly and gently. NO, I have to power on through like I did before, hardcore everything and then, finally, when I feel better again (and it has nothing to do with weight because this time, unlike last time, I AM building muscle and strength-training) then I can just maintain my weight.


When I do reach my goal weight in four weeks, does this mean pig out like last time? No. But it does mean allowing myself to eat more while still roughly counting calories (up to 1800) PLUS some exercise, which for me and hopefully everyone, is very important. Even if it's just twice a week, I will need that just to maintain the weight and stay strong. Yes, I have lost a bunch of weight before via the South Beach Diet where I did not exercise at all but I wasn't fit. I wanna be fit. Kick ass. Etc.


Anyhoo, I did Spin Class (which is mega intense and ranges from 45-60 min) 4 nights in a row this week and tomorrow morning - glorious Saturday morning when I should be sleeping - I am getting up at 8AM to do the morning class. Yeah, it's a bit much but I know myself enough by now to realize that A) do it while I can because next week I may have an excuse and B) if I don't do it every day or at least every other day, I will come to dread the workout and it will cease to be a habit. This a proven fact. The longer I go without exercise, the more I HATE it.


There is one thing though this time that is a lot different from the last time I did this regime. I AM FRICKIN STARVING.


No, I am not eating enough really, but that's the point of cutting calories. 1,200 calories a day. Which is actually OK for someone my height who isn't really overweight and only has a few pounds to lose. At that calorie count (which is the slowest you should go and still function) plus my exercise, I should lose 2 pounds a week.


But I am still starving. Last time I followed the same plan and I wasn't too bad, hunger-wise. This time, I'm just plain hungry. The only difference I can find is that THIS time I am at work, so though I am up and about, I am also chained to an Avid Editing system and bored at times. Many times. Which makes me think about food. And snacking. And so on.


I've decided to take the bull by the horns though and make some changes. I'm not used to this HUNGER feeling, I know in the past I ate because I was "craving" something or "emotionally" hungry but this is the real deal, your tummy is empty please fill it, kinda hunger.


So I've stocked up with low-cal foods that are either high in fibre and protein. Anything to keep my stomach from growling for a few hours.


I'll let you guys know how I get on by next week, and provide some diet-friendly filling foods for you guys as I discover them. Thankfully this extreme hoopla is only till the end of September and considering I am weighing 133.8 at this moment, it seems to be working.


Think I'll toast to that with a 4 0z glass of white wine!

(100 calories)


Make that two!

(200 calories - but worth it :)

Monday, August 25, 2008

Busy Bee

I have to admit, the other day I kinda forgot I had a blog. I mean, I knew I had one but it hadn't occurred to me that maybe I should write in it once in a while.

The reason for my absense (if anyone noticed) is because I have been just a busy little bee. And you know what? I actually despise being busy.

Last week I had something booked after work everyday....
Monday: Dinner with an old friend who was visiting in town.

Tuesday: Radiohead concert (which was FREAKING AMAZING btw - despite my boyfriend's friend who fainted due to too much pot...kinda pissed me off considering it happened during one of my favourite songs, Planet Telex).

Wednesday: met up with a friend I hadn't seen since 2002 - we had a bit of a falling out over things I don't remember but she used to be my best friend since we were wee and it's great that we reconnected.

Thursday: Jack Johnson concert, which was sweet.

Friday: Met with my realtor.

Saturday: Had a stagette party (which was so much fun - got to try pole-dancing for the first time and learned how to do a proper lap dance...my bf was in for a treat).

Sunday: Went with the realtor around the city and checked out apartments (more on house-hunting in the next post)....then went to my boyfriend's parents house for our usual Sunday dinner. Only this time, my mother was there too. EEEK! Despite the fact that we have been going out for 14 months, this was the first time our moms met. It was inevitable but luckily it all worked out for the best and everyone got along swimmingly.

Thankfully the only I have to do this week is go to spin class...and of course, see Stone Temple Pilots on Saturday night, providing Scott Weiland doesn't end up in jail before then. That man better behave!

I know there are a lot of people who thrive on being busy every waking moment. But that's just not for me. Nothing makes me happier than coming home and knowing I have no plans. There's no rush, no pressure and I can do whatever I please. The downside is after awhile it gets boring, so obviously you need a little balance.

But I would still rather take time to stop the roses. And I think that's what it all comes down to...TIME. Last week just flew by in a second and that kinda scared the crap outta me. I need quiet evenings and moments dispersed throughout my days, so I actually FEEL time around me. You know, when you just sit and you can actually feel like you are here, in the moment, feel like you are living and breathing and all of that.

Which is why I've decided that if we ever have kids (as most of you know, I am still on the fence about the whole thing), I'd ideally like to be a stay-at-home mom. Of course, at that point I will likely be knee-deep in the film biz and unwilling to give up my producing job or whatever the hell I am doing. But I just read about all these working mums these days who are constantly rushing from morning to night and I just can't stand doing that.

Again, it's my personality (ahem, lazy) and obviously I think a lot of busy working moms would rather NOT work, given the choice but they can't really afford to do it. And of course, a lot thrive on being busy and a lot love their jobs too much to give it up.

Went off on a bit of a tangent there, but I guess what I am trying to say is in this "go go go" society it feels like life will pass you by in an instant if you don't take some time for yourself and just slow down every once in awhile.

OK. That last bit sounded a bit familiar....and now I know where from.

From the wise mouth of Ferris Bueller: "Life moves pretty fast. If you don't slow down and look around, you might miss it."

(Ferris and Mr. Rooney)

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

A Simple Twist of Fate

Back in April..... I was still in "Business Film" school and eagerly awaiting my future. I knew it wasn't going to be easy to land a job in the film industry but I had my usual naivete about things and figured it would all work out in the end. It did....but back then I thought the "end" would come much sooner.

I did my two-week internship as a development assistant at a big production company and promptly discovered my "dream" job. Here I was, on the sidelines, helping bring ideas to life. Sure, it was just an internship and I was doing tons of odd jobs but I realized that THIS is where I should be. This is what I went to school for to become. This is what I had always wanted to do, every since I saw Jurassic Park when I was 12 and decided I would BE in film. I would do this!

I totally thought my determination would help me secure a position within the company but sadly it did not. Then I thought my ambition would help me get a position with any OTHER film company. And sadly, it did not.

I applied absolutely everywhere - I went through the entire list of my province's producers and contacted them all directly. I worked my way through friends of friends, people I kinda knew, teachers etc, all hoping to network my way into a position in the film industry (after all, its who you know).

But nothing happened. Though the responses I got were all nice, they all said the same thing. Either "not right now, maybe later" or "you can work for free."

As has been the topic of this blog many a times, I will not work for free. Pay my dues, work from the bottom...YES. But for free? I have a mortgage, mouths to feed (mainly my own) and I'm 26. I'm done with the free shit.

So I kinda forgot about film and started to think maybe it wasn't such a good place to be. A place I wanted to be, yes, but the signs were all pointing to NO. Or, not right now.

And such I took the job at the ad agency, feeling so damn guilty about it. This wasn't film. This wasn't anything I just went to school for and it wasn't anything I was interested in. Luckily I didn't at ALL feel guilty about it when I quit 2 weeks later (as an aside, I've noticed the company reposting my position on Craigslist every month...yup, it seems that I was right to leave since no one else in my position can apparently handle the abuse either).

Then started my long, L O N G, foray into getting a job that I wanted and liked. I'm not going to go into much detail since you all damn know about it by now and are sick of it but to summarize: I applied for everything. Film, reception, admin, marketing, writing, journalism, communications, personal assistant, executive assistant, public relations, office manager. After awhile though, I realized that I was no longer going after my dream job. I was getting desperate. I would take anything - screw my dream job. After trying so hard, I knew I would be lucky to get anything.

And still! Nothing came! I had lots of interviews but they were always OH SO CLOSE. They never went where I wanted them to (employment, natch). Luckily, and I do mean this now, there was only one or two jobs which I really, REALLY wanted, so the blow wasn't too devestating when I didn't get them. One was the executive assistant job at the post production company. The other was marketing for an indie theatre company. Both had something to do with film and touched on my education. A sign right?

Well, just as I started to think I may just never get a job - even a job that I DON'T like - I got one. It wasn't the one I wanted because it was a low-paying contract 2-month position (I know you all know that but I digress) but I took it anyway.

It was something. It was film-related. It could one day lead me to where I wanted to go. I was willing to take a pay cut. I was willing to start from the bottom. It wasn't ideal but I was WILLING to make the best out of it. And I have.

Was there a chance of me continuing on after 2 months? Yes. Maybe. Most likely in an admin position, which again, wasn't ideal. But it was too soon to tell.

And so I did something I never did before; I stopped worrying about the future. I started living in the here and the now. I did not think about what lay beyond October. I just started going to work, enjoying the job (or at least not minding it) and my stress levels pretty much vanished over night. This is me, now, and this is me happy. Tomorow will worry about itself.

Then...the strangest thing happened. I had gotten several calls from a well-known local production company. I knew of this company because they were one of the companies that I REALLY wanted to work for back in April and had applied for (course, never heard back). I had also applied again in July for an internship position I saw advertised. It was paid and it was e x a c t l y what I wanted to do, the same kind of thing I had done on my previous internship. Only this one paid well (for an internship), was sponsored by the government and was for a minimum of six months.

I never heard back though and totally forgot about the whole thing until I started getting these voice mails from them. And then emails. I figured I had to get back to them at some point - after all, I had JUST accepted a position and I couldn't do the internship anymore but I still had to turn them down regretfully.

The guy there was totally cool and understood - he was disappointed though because they saw so much potential with me. That was a nice feeling, to be in demand FOR ONCE, but sadly it was not to be. Such is life. He wished me luck and said even though they need the internship filled now, maybe in October we can work something out.

I've heard that before so I didn't think much of it. Back to living in the day to day. October? That's way off.

Then on Monday I got an email from them, again. The guy told me that the head producer - someone very well-known in this country's industry, still wanted to meet with me. Like the next day. She wanted to see if we could work something out anyway.

And so suddenly, yesterday, I found myself sneaking away from the office at lunch time to attend an impromptu interview with said producer and crew.

And then a few hours later I was notified by phone that I they wished to hire me on for the internship.

What exactly just happened here?

Well, it means that together we are applying to the goverment for a mentorship program for producers. This prestigious program is only awarded to 20 pairings of producer/interns in the whole country. Is there a chance that despite the company picking me, we still may not be one of the 20? Of course. But given that every single intern that's applied with them has been chosen, well the odds are in my favour. More than in my favour.

I'll find out in six weeks, either way. And in six weeks my current contract job will be up which means I am free to start working for Production Company S.

And when I say work, I mean work. I will be an actual employee of the company. I will receive a nice paycheck (OK, when I mean nice, I mean I will still have to borrow some money from my parents each month but it's "nice" compared to all other internships...and a lot of other jobs out there). I will have full-time steady work until April. After which, they will give me a raise (providing I do well) and I will continue to work with them. If I end up like all the past interns, then great. They've all either stayed with the company and are development managers, screenwriters, script readers or producers or have gone on to do great things.

Most important of all, I get to be doing which I only dreamed of doing, which I had given up on doing and which I had regretfully accepted may never be in the cards for me.

And yet, here it is. A dream job internship just freakin' fell in my lap. And I was totally getting ready to accept that my career may never be as exciting and unusual as I had hoped it would be.

I know you've all said it before, and I will say it again, but seriously....good, nee, GREAT things happen to those who wait, to those who aren't looking and to those who learn to just enjoy what they've got.

Monday, August 11, 2008

No Complaints

So I officially completed my first week of work and I am amazed at what a difference having a job that you actually like makes to your life.

I guess I should first explain which job I have.

I did not get the job that I was really gunning for - and I wasn't upset over it either. I kinda knew, after all there were signs and for once I wasn't going to gamble on something that wasn't a sure thing.

It would have been a great job to have, mainly because it would be permanent and with benefits. But looking back, I realize now that I think I wanted the job for all the wrong reasons. I emphasized a lot how perfect I would be for the job because of my film and cinema knowledge (especially when it comes to classic films) and because the company dealt with classic and foreign cinema, I figured I would be a great match.

But the more I think about it, the more I realize that I don't think the actual 'job' part of the deal had anything to do with that. Yes, I would have done some marketing stuff, but I am not sure all of the reasons why I thought I would be good for it would have had any part. I think the people knew that too. I am not sure who they were looking for in the end, but it obviously wasn't me.

That's not to say I wasn't slightly miffed about not getting the position - after all, rejection is never fun. But I read somewhere that sometimes you only want something because it's available. Like the guy you would never look twice at....until you find out he likes you. Suddenly, you're all ears. Well, I think when we go to job interviews, the same thing happens. You start really, really wanting the job because you were lucky enough to get an interview. You start planning your future together when if you had never even gotten the interview in the first place, you probably would have forgotten about the company.

I also think you should never want something THAT much. Cuz it will never come to you.

But of course, all is not lost. I do have my position with the post-production agency. And after being there for a week already, I have found tons of wonderful things about it.

*Small company, everyone is really friendly

*No micro-managing! People leave me alone (I like working by myself!)

*I surf the net all day, seeking out lame ass stock footage videos. And when I say lame, I mean the actual stock footage is lame. Bad acting everywhere!

*I'm in the film industry...feels kinds good to end up where I always wanted to go

*NINE MINUTE COMMUTE!

*I work 10-6. Which means I leave my house at 9:45AM and I make it to work with five minutes to spare!

*I am doing more than post-production...my role is actually in development as well which is exactly where I want to be down the line

*I get to be in the film we are making...LOL....OK, it's an educational video and my job is to go through the script and shotlist and find out what footage we can buy previously filmed online and what we can't. Which means the footage we have to film ourselves...I get to be in! Yay for confused student #2!

*It also means that I am flying out to Glacier National Park in Montana in September to stay in a resort for a few days while filming. I have ALWAYS wanted to go to Montana and I am so excited that this might actually happen! Doesn't hurt that the boss owns the resort too!

*Also, they might fly me out to Ottawa in the next few weeks to meet some of the producers. Finally, I get to see the other half of Canada...and the nation's capital to boot!

Most important of all, there is no stress. I show up, do what I can for the day (my task will take absolutely forever) and go home. I don't cringe in the morning (waking up at 9AM helps) and I'm not dying to leave either.

Of course, the two bad points are the low pay and the contract. But I think it'll work out for the best. Low pay is worth it if I like my job. The contract might be a blessing in disguise.

Mainly because I have an interview tomorrow with a prominent production company! I applied for a development assistant job awhile back and they finally got back to me, wanting an interview. I apologized and told them that I was just recently employed and that I couldn't take the interview - though made sure to let them know I would be done my current position in two months. Well, I guess they really like my resume or something because the main producer wants to meet me anyway in hopes that we can work together after my contract is up.

Seriously, so out of the blue. And funny how this was a company that I emailed a few times after I was done school, in April, wondering if I could work for them in any capacity.

Hopefully the interview will go fine tomorrow, I'm sure it will. Either way, I've got my current job so I'm staying focused on the present and not worrying about the future. And hey, if this company wants to offer me a job afterwards...then I'm one lucky duck.

In other news: my apartment is not selling! BOOOO! The market in Vancouver has just CRASHED and now is the worst time to sell...but best time to buy.

I am not sure what my options are really until my father talks with his accountants but ideally what I would want to happen is to rent out my apartment (will make at least $200 profit a month on it) and buy a place between the rockstar and I (and my father). It makes the most sense...especially since I can rent out this place for a pretty penny come the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics!

Anyway, fingers crossed that this all works out. I'm still gonna keep it on the market but I honestly can't lower the price or else we will lose money (we paid WAY too much to begin with...long story). But if it doesn't get any interest by September, I hope renting it will be the option we take.

In other OTHER news: My best friend is getting married! Congrats Kelly and Alex! I am SO excited to be the maid of honour and doubly excited that it means I'll be finally visiting Montreal next summer (where the wedding is). It's gonna be so much fun, and this is the first time I've been part of the wedding party, let alone MOH!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

I'm alive!

And I'm employed. As such I haven't had time to write here cuz I've been so damn tired but rest assured I will inform you all on my job shortly....plus a crazy tale from a recent camping trip :p

Until then, enjoy the sunshine and the weekend!