It's been a good week. I got two days on a series (A one day and B the other) and a two day commercial. I also got a call from one of my regular key grips about a movie in Atlanta in October. It's actually for B camera (the DP has a dolly grip who has been with him for over twenty years and he wants to bring him which I am all in favor of) and I thought, "Hmm, less work, same rate." So I'm going to do it.The B operator and focus puller are both good old friends of mine so hopefully it'll also be a lot of fun. It'll be nice to step away from the normal responsibility for a while. This dolly grip is also one of the best in the business and it'll be nice to meet him. It's funny that after last season's brutal schedule and workload, I still, after two months off, don't really want to step back in it yet. Usually after two or three weeks off I'm anxious to get back behind the dolly, but not this time. I don't know if it's just from getting older, a priority shift, or if the last year was just that hard. When I was in my twenties and thirties, work was all I knew and I'm sad to say that I chased it at the expense of a lot of more important things. I haven't had but a couple of birthdays off since 1990. Even when it's fallen on a weekend it seems there was always a commercial to be done, and I also worked on a six day a week series through much of my twenties. The lure of distant locations, fancy hotel rooms and exciting new cities all kept me hungry to work constantly. Suddenly, not so much. I'm suddenly weary of irregularly shaped sets that need dance floors, rugs that don't come up, fifty foot track runs through the forest, sideboards that don't fit, and a lower back that remembers every Peewee I've helped carry up a set of narrow stairs. I'm not whining (well, maybe a little), I'm just surprised at my lack of ambition to jump into a feature. I'm sure I'll get it back. This just feels like a mid-point breather. By the way, Me, Me, Me, Me. I didn't mean to make this such a self-indulgent post, but I'm due for one. In the meantime, what would any of you readers like to discuss? I've had a call in to at least one of you for a guest post for a while now (you know who you are), so give us some ideas. Also, the pictures on the right are getting a little old, so feel free to send any cool ones you may have. I'll be away from the computer for a week or so (I still get email though) to do some family things and spend time with my children who are on opposite sides of the country, but will be together this week. Also, don't forget the message forum on the right of the page, which strangely gets rarely used. I see searches for things that lead to this page all the time ("used Fisher 10," "Mounting jib arm on Hustler 4," "laying circle track") but rarely any questions. So use us. We'll do our best to give an answer. Meanwhile, all of you have a safe and productive week.
I feel like I should clarify something here, also. For whatever you're doing on set, there is no substitution for an experienced Key and Dolly Grip. We can give you ideas and answers for whatever you might be doing, but some things shouldn't be attempted without someone who knows what they're doing actually present. Be safe. Learn the basics before you try complicated rigs. Just thought I should throw that in. Remember, Anything Can Happen.