Saturday, February 04, 2006

February 3rd, 2006

Weird. Much to my surprise, I found a check waiting for me today, paying me for the day's work I missed when Steve Carrell got the clap. That kind of thing is to be expected for union workers, but it's certainly the first time it happened to me. Very nice. It almost makes up for the waste that was last Wednesday. Almost.

I wrote in my magic notebook about my last couple of days, my work on "The Office" today, and my generous plunge into depression. But now I don't know if I want to post it here. Too honest a glimpse, I fear.

Ah well.

Right now, I'm at the Universal Sheritan Hotel lobby, supposedly working on "The Office." It's a giant call, with more people than they could ever want to use. Yesterday, I was watching a WWII documentary and Hitler was giving a speech to what looked like a million people. There was an undulating mass of cheering, screaming, saluting Germans, and I honestly had never seen anything like it. It was like a public restroom in Bejing or something.

I've never watched "The Office," only because my bastage friend tyranist hated the British version. I am trying to keep my excitement levels down, hoping I can plunge into a pit of self-hating despair so deep that it will take my life. Hormone imbalance, hereditary depression, or outright loserdom, each time these dark clouds gather, I wonder if it'll be the last time. But I always bounce back, eventually. Too bad, though, I'm really doing no one any good at all.

Blah, blah, blah (post edited for content).

The shoot was pretty easy (though most of them are). We were attending a sales conference, where one of the characters, Dwight Schrute, was getting a salesman of the year award. When it was time for him to give his speech, he freezes, and his boss gets up in his place. He vamps, very unsuccessfully, talking about Excellence and humor and customers. And then Schrute gets up and begins quoting a Mousellini speech, substituting "salesman" and "workplace" for "fascist" and "battlefield." It gets a tremendous reaction--we are cheering, thinking he's great, and are completely unaware that anything unusual is happening.

This guy Rainn Wilson, who plays Dwight Schrute, had to work a lot harder than Steve Carrell, but I'm not sure if that's because Carrell is more talented/funnier, or if Wilson just had a more difficult role.

At first, the scene was funny. Then they changed it around--or the actor ad-libbed a lot--and it was the opposite of funny. Then we did it a few more times, the way it was scripted, and it actually got funny again. That doesn't often happen.

The man next to me was geekier than . . . well, my Uncle Dave who bit the heads of chickens, rats, and small children for the circus. He complained a lot about the scene and claimed the show was on cable and no one would ever see it. He told me he didn't recognise the actors and when I told him Carrell was the FORTY-YEAR-OLD VIRGIN, he said, "THAT'S the 40 year old virgin?" with so much disdain, that I said, "What, did he steal your title?"

A moment later, the geeky guy laughed and said, "I just got that. That's pretty funny."

I had a test screening pass to see something that night, but we didn't get out in time. I went home and . . . I have no memories after that.

Rish "Mister Happy" Outfield

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