Saturday, October 3, 2015

All-Nighter Downtown

You know it’s going to be a fun day at work when the street for crew parking and basecamp is blocked by police at both ends because of an escaped convict, and there are no detours or instructions. After being turned around at one end, and then managing to find the opposite end, only to be blocked there as well, I stopped in the middle of the intersection, hoping to get a police officer’s attention. I made eye contact with the nearest one, but he was on the phone with his wife or mother or something (I could hear his half of the conversation, and it was not that difficult to tell it was nothing official). After several moments it was another officer who came over to me. I explained where I needed to go, and he told me to cut through an alley, which is what I did. Then, before I’d even parked, some background began asking me questions, about where to go and so on, a full hour before their call time. I was like, for the next hour you can go wherever you like. A significant portion of the background, as it turned out, spoke no English. That certainly helped things. In situations like that, you just have to laugh and make the conscious decision to be amused by everything. Besides, this was to be an all-nighter, so I had to pace myself, you understand. I couldn't get all that upset right at the beginning.

Later, an old lady collecting cans and bottles (who may or may not have been an extra - I don't even know), took a half-filled can of grape soda and poured the contents into one of the coolers, even as I stood there, frantically motioning for her not to. This was as the cameras were rolling, so I couldn't very well yell at her to cut that shit out. Not that she would have understood anyway. Besides being apparently unable to speak English, she was clearly mad. And then, as I motioned for her to come toward me away from the cameras, she said something in gibberish and walked directly into frame. It must be difficult for her. Or maybe not. Maybe her world is so simple and tiny that everything is easy. I don't know. I was glad the cooler she poured the drink into was the one full of diet sodas, because at that moment I needed a Mountain Dew.

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