As most of you know, we have a new addition to our little family. Jackson is now at twelve pounds. As I was sitting on the couch last Saturday with him, it occured to me that he would make a good workout partner. I could do three sets of twenty reps of lifting him straight armed off my lap to just over my head. So I did it. A few hours later, I bent down and turned to pick up something or other and BAM. It was like an electric cattle prod was jabbed into my lower left back. I somehow made my way to the couch after several minutes in a frozen position. There I stayed. For two days. I have now missed two days of work and tomorrow will be my first day back (the doctor told me I could stay out until Thursday, but I think I can make it back tomorrow). I've probably missed ten days of work in twenty years. I hate missing work. I will now have to endure endless jokes and jabs- "You got that old man?"- and, of course next week's check will be a little lighter. I've carried three hundred pound dollies up stairs, lifted dollies onto track, hauled plywood into sets and rarely had a complaint. It took twelve pounds of lift to put me on my back. I blame the boy.
As I was recuperating, I had occasion to rewatch The Ring. I saw it in the theatre when it came out and was impressed with the production value, but it soon fell out of my memory like so many things do nowadays (Where are my keys,? where is my car,? Where did I leave the dolly?). Watching it again, I was struck by how well it's made. Forget the story. The Ring kicked off the craze of American studios remaking Japanese horror flicks- The Grudge, One Missed Call, etc., most of which were inferior to the original, and at least one of which, I was Dolly Grip on. The story is implausible at best. The beauty of The Ring is the atmosphere. Every frame is infused with dread. Much like Seven, the rainy, dreary Northwestern American coast is used to full effect. The dolly work by Mike Brennan is beautiful and flawless. You won't see any clumsy crane finishes or bumpy push-ins here. And the dolly work adds to the dread. Watching it for the second time, I was able to see it purely on technical terms. They took a story which they had to know was clunky and made the atmosphere the star. So check it out if you get a chance.
Anyway, I'm back to work tomorrow and hope I can fake my way through another day.
PS- We recently crossed the hundred thousand hits mark. Thank you all for reading and contributing your knowledge and stories. As my wife reminds me- If I had a dollar for every hit.....