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Showing posts from July, 2004
MESSAGE HELL & I BELIEVE IN LOVE TOO, BUT SHUT UP!
Today I have had little urgent things to do. A check didn't arrive where it was supposed to yesterday. If it doesn't arrive in the next few hours I've got to have accounting cancel the check, cut a new one, and race it up into the Hollywood hills to our director. We've made some cast changes, and I've got to get new dubs of the workouts to them to rehearse - but I've given all my copies out and our dub gal is on vacation. Quick, jump in the car and run to a dub house. While on the phone leaving important messages, I'm stuck listening to:

"You have reached 310 555 1212. PAUSE The person you are trying to reach is unavailable right now. PAUSE You may leave a message after the tone. If you'd like to leave your call back number, press one. If you'd like to page this person, press the * key. If this is an urgent message, press 3 for further options. If you'd like to leave a message, please sp…
DO YOUR BEST SHAUN & I'LL DO MY BEST DONALD TRUMP
We've got a guy coming tomorrow to audition to replace Shaun. He's danced in Janet Jackson videos and teaches fitness classes. Dare I get my hopes up?

I've got to fire one of the nice women we asked to be in 4 of the videos. She's been practicing them for 5 weeks now, but we've reconfigured the cast and she doesn't work in the new plan. I like her a lot, but tomorrow I'll have to call her and say, "I really like you and wish you luck in the future, but you're fired." Tough job, but I can raise to the occasion.

Ivy

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AN ACTOR AND A RAPIST - NOT A RAPPER
Just read an article in the Trib that actor Anthony Anderson (who has co-starred in the Barbershop movies and Kangaroo Jack) and Wayne Witherspoon, an assistant director on his new film are charged with aggravated rape of a woman on the set of  "Hustle & Flow". Passers by heard screaming and when they opened a trailer containing Anthony, Wayne and a naked woman, she ran out.

Rape is a very serious crime borne out of a deep and deranged hatred of women and the urge to violate them in the most intimate way possible. I'm just wondering how that works into a day when you have professional and artistic responsibilities on a movie set.

What could have been going through Anthony's head?
- I've got to memorize these 6 pages of rapid-fire dialogue before lunch.
- What did the makeup person do to my hair? It feels all poofy and weird.
- Did my personal assistant let the wardrobe person know my correct pants size because so far t…
VEGAS WITH MY BEST BUDDIES
I'm back and had a great time! Vegas was good to us in the shoe department and we found ways to amuse ourselves. Seeing the amazing Mia and fabulous Lana was really a gift. Ya know, years go by when I don't hang with my real friends - the kind of friends you'd call if you found a dead hooker in your bed and needed help figuring out a plan to get rid of the body* - I find that I just accept that I don't get to see them.

But I'm lucky to have these friends and not getting to hang out with them for long periods of time sucks. So it was a weekend of catching up and being girls together. However it was fun to rediscover Mia & Lana's individual gifts. Mia's comic timing, bubbly personality that can turn sexy and silly at the same time. Lana's subtle sense of class, dry wit and level headedness with the most refreshing candor without being rude.

What I've been puzzling with since getting on the plane to come home is: How d…
BITS AND PIECES ON THE EVE OF VEGAS
I'm gripped with the fear that I may never enjoy bleu cheese again. After the massive overload a few weeks ago when the deli guy was WAY too generous with the blue cheese in my Cobb salad I took a break. But today I purchased a Cobb salad with a normal amount of bleu cheese and could only manage a few mouthfuls before I hit the wall.

Could it be that the Deli guy, in his attempt to reward a loyal customer with an extra heap of beautiful chunks of bleu cheese has put me off it completely? No more Stilton? No more Maytag? No more English Huntsman? Shudder. I stubbornly reject that as a possibility. I don't reject it to the point where I want to put one more bite of that salad in my mouth however. Ugh.

That type of aversion therapy must have been what my mother had in mind when she caught me smoking as a kid. She got me out on the driveway and told me to smoke the entire pack of cigarettes. Her rationale was that I'd turn green and never s…
NOT YOUR GRANDMA'S OPERA.MURDER & PORN TO MUSIC!
Below are excerpts from today's New York Times article Berlin Tarts Up Opera With Sex and Violence by Jeremy Eichler:
In many quarters opera still maintains an image as genteel and civilized entertainment, but that stereotype was long ago jettisoned in this thrill-seeking city. Directors here, it seems, seldom meet an opera that a little sex and over-the-top violence can't fix.

This impression was supported by two forays this month into the dark heart of the Berlin opera world: Verdi's "Don Carlo" and Mozart's "Abduction From the Seraglio".


Let's begin with "Don Carlo". The first bizarre touch, comes in the first act as Princess Eboli's ladies-in-waiting have been inexplicably transformed into a squad of secret agents who stand shoulder-to-shoulder at the front of the stage, attaching silencers to their handguns and pointing at the audience.

Don't bother wondering. It…
ANOTHER AUDITION & PACKING FOR VEGAS
OK kill me now. This morning I received a very honest e-mail from the director who'll be shooting the workout videos. She has reviewed the audition tapes from last week's casting call and may I just say that she's a very secure person to put that level of negative commentary in a formal communication. Sure, I agree with her, but I'd only have the guts to say those comments out of the corner of my mouth(or blog em. heh heh.).

So unbelievably (yeah, I like to fool myself. I fucking knew that we'd be doing the audition again, I mean, you read the blog - that last audition was a goddamn horror show!) we'll be holding another open casting call for a replacement of our beloved Shaun.

The thought of having to smile and be reassuring to countless handsome guys who can't dance or even move properly sinks my heart. I'm trying to mentally prepare myself to come back from my vacation next week and grind through another emot…
GHOSTS IN THE HALL AND   GADZOOKS! WHAT COLOR IS YOUR FACE?
I've been monitoring the temperature in the halls of our office suite and have come to a firm conclusion that we're experiencing disembodied entities that roam our halls without their bodies.

No, I've ruled out other possible explanations. We've had the building engineer up inspecting our thermostats, temperature settings, vents and ducts. Everything checks out OK and because I've taken a special interest in the situation, I watched the engineer carefully as I lurked around. He (or she? Hey, the engineer had a major Pat thing going on - round butt that could be Rubenesque or just a fat guy butt, boobs that could have been man-boobs, etc.) took several hook-like screwdrivers from their holsters around his/her ample hips and performed minute adjustments.

I was satisfied that Pat really knew what he/she was doing because of the care he/she took with her/his ministrations to the temperature controls. You know…
JOE KNOWS ABOUT THE QUARTER UNDER THE CHAIR!
Woops! Busted! Joe read the blog I wrote months ago about how I leave things laying on the floor, but through my own peculiarities, will make no plans to pick them up until I do a big white tornado - when everything in the apartment gets cleaned.

He called me out on my personal brand of laziness, "Are you just going to leave that beer cap under the coffee table like you did with the quarter under the chair?" I gasp and spin around to look at him. "What ever do you mean darling?" "Don't be coy. I read the blog where you acknowledge that you have been leaving things like a Hershey's kiss wrapper behind the kitchen garbage can with no plans to pick them up... and you've been doing it since childhood." "Well, they're tiny little things, I wouldn't leave something like a meatball or fishstick on the floor." "Ha! You're lazy!"

Pa-shaw I say. Also fiddle-dee-dee! I shan'…
FRIENDS DON'T LET FRIENDS GO ON REALITY TV
So last night I didn't get over my headache until about an hour of couch lazing, a drink and a salad. That damned audition.

We didn't watch our French film last night. We watched a disturbing episode of TLC's What Not to Wear. Stacy & Clinton were making over this excrutiatingly annoying woman named Diana who is about 45 years old. Her clothes were a joke. Diana liked to think of herself as an intellectual and would declare that certain odious outfits had to be kept because they reminded her of certain operas. She justified this long Stevie Nicks filmy coat thingy she wore because to her it was "ecclesiastical". A-hem, unless we're also wearing a wimple, rosary & support hose, I don't think that we need to be wearing ecclesiastical garments.

But the worst thing about her by far was not her wardrobe - it was the grating boredom that she projects when she speaks. Her facial features and jaw are normall…
I'VE GOT RHYTHM! NO YOU DON'T ACTUALLY
What have I been doing all day? Well, one of the amazing guys we cast for my client's upcoming workout videos has had to quit because he's been given the lead in a Broadway musical. Dang! Oops, I mean congratulations Shaun! We're so happy for you, really we are, but dang!

Shaun brought so much impish fun to the cast that we just have to find someone similar to keep the vibe we've achieved with him. So our production department flew into action and whipped together a casting group for open casting today.

First, let me say that California is the land of the beautiful and there wasn't a dog in the bunch. Second, let me say that some of the gentlemen we saw today have successful modeling careers and are extremely gifted in the looks area. Third, while some of them could keep a beat and follow the routine steps OK, none of them had Shaun's je ne sais quoi.

Then we get to the alarming frequency of the earnest handsome guy…
POLES! FREEZE! (ha) STAY RIGHT WHERE YOU ARE!
Here's a little excerpt from a New York Times article by William J. Broad titled Will Compasses Point South? which begins:

"The collapse of the Earth's magnetic field, which both guards the planet and guides many of its creatures, appears to have started in earnest about 150 years ago. The field's strength has waned 10 to 15 percent, and the deterioration has accelerated of late, increasing debate over whether it portends a reversal of the lines of magnetic force that normally envelop the Earth.
During a reversal, the main field weakens, almost vanishes, then reappears with opposite polarity. Afterward, compass needles that normally point north would point south, and during the thousands of years of transition, much in the heavens and Earth would go askew.
A reversal could knock out power grids, hurt astronauts and satellites, widen atmospheric ozone holes, send polar auroras flashing to the equator and confuse birds, fish …
KEN JENNINGS IS EVIL AND MUST BE DESTROYED!
He's a robot who Joe & I refuse to watch - thusly he's stolen Jeopardy from us. Can Sony studios find someone to knock him out of that first podium that he's set up home in? Where or where are the well-rounded brainy humans who can foil his cursed evil souless repetition of correct answers in the most boring fashion imaginable? C'mon! Take him down already!

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SOMEBODY GIVE ME A BAT & WHO'S THAT IN FRONT OF THE SMUT FACTORY?
Friday I read an Associated Press article that has haunted me:

Disabled Man Dies After Alleged Beating
MILWAUKEE -- A man who lived at a home for the mentally and physically disabled died of head injuries after being beaten and robbed by about 10 young men, police said.

David Rutledge Jr., 54, died Thursday at a hospital where he was admitted Sunday after telling authorities he hurt himself when he fell.

It wasn't until doctors discovered Rutledge had multiple skull fractures that authorities doubted his story, said Police Sgt. Ken Henning…

…Brever said it was not uncommon for residents at the home to be victimized, but that Rutledge's beating was more violent than previous incidents he recalled.

**************************************
My only conclusion is that some neighborhood punks have figured out that the mentally and physically handicapped residents of a local facility are not only easy targets for…
ONE OF THE REASONS I MISS CHICAGO & HOW SLEEPY DO I LOOK?
L.A.T.E Ride 2004 on July 11
Ride 25 moonlit miles through downtown and North Side neighborhoods for the 16th annual "Long After Twilight Ends" recreational ride. Snacks and a post-ride breakfast at Buckingham Fountain provided.
Participants gather at midnight at Buckingham Fountain for live music, free Frappuccino samples, "best lit bike" and "best decorated helmet" contests, registration and packet pick-up.
Neighborhoods include: Greek Town, River North, Lincoln Park and more. The ride starts between 1:30-2:15 a.m. and goes northwest to Foster Avenue and Pulaski Road, then east to Foster Avenue Beach and south along the lakefront path back to the fountain. Registration is limited to 10,000 participants.


How cool is my hometown? Late Saturday night (Sunday actually) anyone with a bike and a smidgen of insomnia can go to Buckingham Fountain, sip a Frappuccino, nibble snacks, listen to a live ba…
½ NAKED CATALOG TREND
Years ago I ordered something from Victoria's Secret, and they - being the most notorious company for selling their mailing list indiscriminantly to EVERYONE - sold my information to what must have been a global clearinghouse.

For years I've been getting a flood of catalogs that range from Robert Redford's Sundance stuff to Lillian Vernon garbage. But recently I've noticed that the trend of displaying clothing in catalogs is to not to actually have the models put the clothing on.

Pants are completely unbuttoned revealing underpants.
Sweaters are either displayed by:
(a) One button fastened at the chest. Just to enough conceal the heaving breasts of the model yet revealing her ribs and stomach... or
(b) buttoned just at the hem to reveal not only the model's complete tummy and belly button but her bra - or her entire breasts while magically concealing her nipples with a feather she's holding or something.
Robes are never put on, they…
POTPORRI
They're bringing back The Family Guy! I'm so excited! I just can't get enough of Brian the martini swilling dog and Stewie the evil 1-year-old! Can't happen fast enough in my book.

OK, I've got to spend some time away from iTunes. I have no money to buy songs with, but last night I found Yoko Ono and Yo La Tengo singing Hedwig's Lament from Hedwig and the Angry Inch! Then I discovered Sondre Lerche a 21-year-old from Bergen Norway. I have no idea what I'll do when my credit card bill arrives, but I found myself clicking Buy Album after listening to each sample of the songs on Faces Down his debut album.

Last night I got another new workout from my client again videotaped in her backyard - this is 40 minutes of cardio and it flew by. Perhaps since she and her assistants were having such fun that they had to exclaim that they hadn't been drinking. Whew! Entertainment and burning fat at the same time. This could really catch on! Speaking of enterta…
FAHRENEHIT 9/11 and PESSIMISTIC MUCH?

So Joe & I buy tickets to see yesterday's 10:30 A.M. showing of F9/11 and the theatre isn't mobbed at all, just a few people milling around - nothing big. Joe offers to buy me a coffee and read for ½ hour until the show starts.

Mistake number two was my selection of a yummy ice blended mocha with whipped crème - not a small, no no give me the medium. Slurp. Delicious! Why was this a mistake? Because since my induction phase of Atkins I've radically reduced my caffeine intake and have had no sweets to speak of. That first slurp was all I should have had. But by the time we were heading back to the theatre, my brain was all zzzzping! ping! pang! ping! rrriing! And I had a bit of brain freeze going too. I could only finish about 1/4 of the yummy drink. That amount of caffeine and sugar should hold me for a year or so.

What was mistake number one? That was failing to understand the meaning of the lack of people in the lobby when we boug…
TODAY SHOW GROSS OUT
D'yall remember last winter when I flicked on the TV while waking up and the newscaster was going into graphic detail about a man who fell and a 10" drill bit went through his eye and into his brain - and Joe came awake to grab the remote and click it off saying he'd been scarred?

You might also recall that I'd questioned what the hell the newscasters were thinking to give those kinds of details when most of America was having breakfast?

Well, this morning while sipping our coffee and munching our breakfast the Today Show did a piece on how unclean most hotel pools and hot tubs are. This Health Department lady was regaling us on her team's findings while creepy footage of ugly yet amorous people hugging & kissing in hot tubs and clinking plastic champagne glasses.

How tacky are plastic champagne glasses? Sure, I know you can't have actual glass around a pool, but then I suggest that you confine your alcoholic beverages to a nice beer ca…
SHINY SWINGY PERFECT TRESSES
I can't stop touching my hair. I can't stop looking at my hair. I see that I've taken the first step on a path that can only lead to complete self-absorbsion to the point of social seclusion.

I did get to overhear some interesting comments and conversations while the straightening process continued for 6 hours: A guy that I couldn't see was getting his hair cut and blabbing on and on spewing some political rant - but the unfortunate fellow had no ability to make a point or to organize his thoughts into cohesive sentences. I could hear his poor stylist punctuating his tirade with what she was hoping would pass for interested "uh huh"s. I have no idea whether I agree with his positions or not because I couldn't link up his jumbled prattle into anything resembling a point. How frustrating.

After he left a woman walked through the salon on the way to the patio and said into her cell phone, "So let me get this straight, Carlos