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8:57 AM - SUN 9.27.20

Fun. With Jim And Jane

Taking the new machine out for a test run...

(Jane R. recently bought a new, larger MacBook Pro, the better to accommodate her needs as a filmmaker. And I - with some trepidation, because it wasn't cheap - bought her not-that-old old Mac, immediately making it the fanciest, most expensive laptop I've ever owned.)

Hoping I will turn this new machine into an actual "workstation" where creative, productive things get done. Because if all I end up doing is watching YouTube videos and checking out porn...well, that could be accomplished on any old run-of-the-mill, low-end laptop.

But anyway...

Well, this past Monday concluded four days of Shameless shooting in a week's time ("Block-shooting" episodes 1-3).

Moving forward, I'm back sometime after the 27th of next month to shoot episode #5, then out again for #6 (Which is all Casting knows about right now).

I was a little discouraged to already be out of two episodes in just the first half of the season - I've had entire seasons in recent years where I was in all but one episode - but what can you do?

Anyway, it was, by-and-large, really fun to be back working again, and particularly, to be working that much; I was there often enough and had enough to do, to really feel "part of things", which was lovely (On the show, as in life, I'm rarely-if-ever "central" to the proceedings but am usually just hanging out on the periphery).

And for-the-record, the COVID safety procedures, which felt weird for a. day or two, quickly became "The New Normal". (And "craft services" now being outside the soundstage, in a kiosk where you have to ask for whatever-you-want, instead of it being a graze-all-day buffet, is actually a good thing for a certain food-addicted tub-of-lard; prior to this, I probably spent more time in "crafty" than I did anywhere else).

Happily, there hasn't been time for a Shameless let-down, because Jane R. blew into town on Tuesday (She's back at The Normandie till Thursday) and we've been shooting for the documentary and just hanging out, having a good old time.

I liked the Air BnB where she was at last time - Actually, I think I liked it more than she did - but there's something about her being at The Normandie I really enjoy. I like the feeling of her being "just down the street" at a place that has come to feel like a second home (Though some amenities have gone away since the pandemic - the breakfast buffet they wanted to do away with even before COVID-19 is gone, and Cassels, the connected restaurant, now doesn't open till 11 am. And they apparently don't make the little fudge-y, chocolate cookies anymore that they used to welcome their guests with - There were two in a package, and splitting them with Jane used to be a fun little treat/ritual).

In addition to the usual fun with Jane, I've enjoyed seeing Seth, our DP, over the past couple days (And yesterday we also had Tom, Seth's assistant). While I mostly look to Jane for whether we got what we needed to get with a given shoot/voiceover/what-have-you, I've really come to appreciate Seth's feedback as well - He's a pretty mellow, laidback guy, so if he's amused or moved by what we've done, I feel pretty sure "we're onto something".

I"ve thought about this a lot over the process of shooting the doc - While it would have been possible to do what we're doing with a team that was just "doing their jobs", it's added a great deal to the experience to feel like the people that have been brought into this project have become invested, and that we've all enjoyed each other as people.

I know Jane feels she and Seth have become friends, and even though he and I haven't spent the same amount of time together, I feel the same way. And I hope that "friendship"
extends beyond the shoot.

Speaking of friendship, Jane and I are having an early dinner with Cary and Kay later today - I am very much looking forward to that.

But now it's time for "Atheist Sunday School", so I am outta here...

(Till next time...)



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