It’s that time of the year again where I annually get a little bit crazier and a whole lot less sober, and surprisingly enough, things are okay. With me barreling towards the music video, which is my last big project before the year ends, and the supposed “end of the world” passing by, the last couple of weeks have been busy, as per usual.
Of course, there’s always time to rant. You know what I hate? The entire fucking Christmas season. Don’t get me wrong, I like earning that little something extra from whatever company I happen to be employed in every December (and let me stress the word “little”), but everything else about the holidays baffles me. The unnecessary traffic, the seemingly compulsive need to buy stuff, the god awful parties, the reunions, the carolers, the stupid movies, the irrationally cheery mood everyone’s in... Every. Fucking. Thing.
Still, it’s not so bad, at least not as bad as previous years, and I’m glad it’s over. Here come eleven months of sanity.
Going Old School.
|Where it all began. Sorta.|
In line with the with the shitty video I plan on shooting, one of the hurdles I seem to have encountered was looking for an actual location to shoot the damn thing. Since this is something I’ve never done before (the whole “non-comedic” nature of the song), coming up with ideas is a tad more difficult than usual. On one Friday, as me and the Big Man were supposed to scour the immediate vicinity for an ideal spot. As we were stuck in traffic, it suddenly hit me, and I told him to drive towards the alma mater. No, not the big green university way down South, but the shitty, rinky dink small town high school that me and some of the oldest friends I have. St. Michael’s Institute has been my “home” for nearly half of my life, and the reason why the option of shooting something there always eluded me.
So, off we went, and surprisingly enough, it happened to be the birthday of the school principal; luckily, the same principal who ran the archaic institution back when me and the Big Man and Ol’ Football Head were still in our teens trying to survive those tumultuous years. (I’ll take any and all opportunities to use the word “tumultuous”.) The school has changed a lot, and but the teachers, the general atmosphere, still remained the same. I’ll get into the preproduction shenanigans in a bit, but finding a location that’s this meaningful has to be a sign.
We also ran into one of the people I’ve known the longest; a dude I new since kindergarten, and anybody who knows even a little bit about me knows that I refuse to leave a meeting like that as such. So off to the club we went, and while I’m not at liberty to divulge certain details, let me break it down to key events: someone got slapped four times, I had a fever AND high blood pressure, a crazy chick broke a bunch of stuff, and an old friend went home with another crazy chick. Yeah, that happened.
The Tiny Dancer.
Over that entire ordeal, one person made it a point to look after me, and that was the Tiny Dancer, the girl I was talking about in my last post. It’s not surprising that she knows how to make a dude feel special, but in the various times that we hung out, I can’t help but admire her and her story (or what I know of her story). Here she is, bereft of opportunities, making the most of what she has and refusing to lose her resolve, that shit is just inspiring. Hell, I’ve known some people absolutely losing it just because Forever 21 ran out of the blouse they wanted. As I mentioned, like the people I met in Purgatory back in 2009, someone who can go through all that and still be able to not just succeed but smile deserves respect.
|He shows up once a year and sells phones, like a weird Santa.|
I always try to surround myself with people like that, people of substance. With someone like her around, I know that me doing any less would be a downright crime.
Christmas with The Scoobies.
The Scoobies and I see each other every time there’s a major holiday. I’ve talked about this before. These days, we only get to see Nikki on Facetime or whatever. I’ve also mentioned that. I’ve also mentioned that every time we hang out I feel all blessed and happy and all that good shit. So, nothing’s new. Same old amazing nights with some of the most amazing people I’ve ever met in the middle of the season I hate the most.
My Not-so-Perfect Day and The Think Tank Party.
I didn’t originally plan on attending the office Christmas party. Not because of some gripe with the holidays (That never goes away.) or because I was too busy (Which I was, but that’s never a good reason to miss a party, even shitty ones.), but because it was strategically set on the night before the world was supposedly ending. Now, I was never a believer of that Mayan calendar hoohah, but I’m also a believer in being prepared and in the fact that we live in a world of infinite possibilities. So, just in case, I plotted out my perfect day.
The plan was simple; bacon and eggs for breakfast (a shitload of bacon and eggs at that), a lunch date with the Tiny Dancer (check... and it was lovely), then off to Makati to do stand up (Hell, if the world was ending, I’ll go out on stage, mic in hand.) I don’t mean to snub the company party, especially since this is the only company I’ve been able to tolerate enough to stick long enough to see a second Christmas party invite, but I already visited the Boss and what remains of the team I was a part of (and partly responsible for my extended stay in the Tank). That was more than enough for me.
|People who would never survive the zombie outbreak.|
But, the season reared its ugly head again as the drones of shoppers caused a traffic jam so bad, it took me hours to get to even halfway towards my destination. So, I joined my beloved fellow part timers and off a partyin’ we went.
Truth is, it wasn’t so bad. Yeah, it wasn’t my kind of scene, but a shitload of alcohol fixed that real quick. After that veil of intoxication was pulled over my boyish good looks (Hah!), it was all laughs. There was a reconciliation of sorts (I had a spat with one of the office friends), there were some regrettable dancing, a declaration of family form one of my fellow geeks and even more drinking.
While this night doesn’t go down in the history books compared to certain weekends (and some questionable weeknights) in my life, I still wouldn’t have minded the world ending right then and there.
The past couple of weeks have been nothing but me preparing for the shoot. The Big Man was, to my surprise, pulling his own weight despite the seeming lack of focus (Girl problems). It’s been ridiculously crazy, what with a producer that seems to suffer from delusions of grandeur, an artist that’s hard to read, a retired publicist that I both want to impress and piss off, casting meetings and all the other usual shit, with the holidays being a frosting on this crap cake of an endeavor. Despite all of that, however, I’m excited to see how this plays out.
I have assembled a cast and crew of some of the more important people of the latter half of my year. The Big Man seems to be handling the role of production manager well enough, and the guy’s the yin to my proverbial yang. (Sounds a tad gay, don’t it?) The cast is headed by my Nephew, who’s rock and roll in all the right ways. Then there’s my Erin Hannon, who’s got the chops for work of this nature. Then there’s Raymond, the pretty lunkhead who may surprise everyone. Rounding off the main cast is the Tiny Dancer, providing a youthful energy on camera and providing me with a boost off camera. Without her, and the fact that I’ve been drinking on a nearly daily basis since preproduction started, I’d have probably have shot somebody already, myself definitely not an exception.
And then there’s me, the creative force behind this potentially good, potentially turd-tastic video. I have a tendency to how all the work, which is something the rest of the people I’ve worked with know, and it’s always been a win-win. If the product is good, everyone gets more than their fair share of the credit for my lovechild, and if it sucks, everyone else can wash their hands and say “I did my job well. The director did it.”
Heh. We’ll find out come January,