Saturday, January 03, 2015

Happy New Year!

  I know, I know, a dormant blog is really depressing (first world problems). I'm sorry for my absence. But, as you all know, real life intrudes and as the list of things you have to do gets longer, things tend to drop off the bottom. That's what happened in this case. Work, family, babies needing attention, business, daughters in college, soccer games and everything else piled up until I had no room for this. Even when I had the time, I didn't have the energy, or initiative, or inspiration to give you guys a half-assed post just for the sake of doing something. For the last eight or so years I've done an end-of-the-year post of things I've learned. These include things I've learned about the job, and life in general. I don't know how much I have to draw upon, but here goes:

1. Don't be afraid to fail. You would think this one would have come about years ago, but I'm just starting to get it. Strangely, this was brought about by a crane shot. I was doing a very large studio picture (literally money was no object) and needed to get the camera as close to a car on a gimble as I could as we raced toward it on an insert car. After several unsuccessful passes, the camera operator said, "Why don't you cue the stop?" "Sure," I said. I was confident and full of piss and vinegar about scraping the paint on this car. We raced in, the car rolled on the gimble, ....and I chickened out. I called it earlier than the operator had previously. We all had a good laugh, but I resigned myself to be a little more bold in the future. Granted, this was a special case with a lot of variables; a speeding insert car, a technocrane, a rolling car, but I still chickened out in the end. I won't next time.

2. Someone was once where you are. I work in a boom town right now. It's full of guys who don't have near the experience they should for the jobs many of them are getting. Have a little patience. Don't yell, teach. Lord help me.

3. Take time off. Do it. Things will work out. In twenty-five years at this job I have never missed a payment or wanted for a job. Have faith in your friends. Have faith in the Lord. Take a week (or a month) off.

4.On the first day everyone is as nervous as you. Call on your experience. Embrace it.

5. Beer is a gift from the Lord.

6.Play with your children. Someday they will stop asking.

7. You don't always have to have the answer. That's why you have a Key Grip. Sometimes others will see the answer before you do. It's ok.

8. Let the younger guys do the heavy lifting. I paid my dues. I don't have to rush in and pick up the dolly any more. (This isn't an excuse to be lazy, just to use your resources). We have a crew of guys in their twenties and thirties. Now, I let them carry the heavy stuff if I'm doing something else.

Wow, I made it to 8. Meanwhile, I'm on a short holiday break until we resume the latest epic I'm on. We have two and a half weeks left and I'm unemployed until the phone rings.

I will be at the Chapman grand opening at Pinewood Studios-Atlanta on January 24, where I will be demonstrating the Hustler 4 dolly in what is sure to be an edge of your seat affair. If you want to attend, you must RSVP to Hope to see you there.

Let's all have a great 2015. Stay safe out there.

1 comment:

Michael Taylor said...

Maybe you could -- at some point -- elaborate on the scenario depicted in Number One. Hey, I'm just a juicer, and all this grip talk of gimbals and "calling the cue" make my head spin. No doubt all your dolly grip readers know exactly what you're talking about here, but I'm having a hard time forming a picture of e exactly what was happening there.

it's great to see you posting again. I fully understand the difficulty of finding the time and energy to write these posts while working full-time -- I've been having the same problem lately -- but better late than never.

And dude, get some rest...