all the kids

all the kids

Sunday, February 4, 2018

One Brave Finger

Ever wanna wake up feeling rolled over by a 50 thousand pound greasy Italian sausage? Try to direct a short film you wrote.

Not just a short film but a silly, incredibly personal true to life accounting of why you are a failure in relationships. And you know what, invite a bunch of people over to a cramped apartment bedroom where you will shoot it and they will spend 13 hours tromping all through your words and your heart. Some people will be spewing your words, which sound excruciating by the way, after the first five minutes. Some people will be just putting equipment or running equipment, or dragging heavy things all over your words. Some people will be putting up drapes and fixing the colorful lamp, and hammering shit into your words. Everyone except for two people will be incredibly nice and helpful and seeming to enjoy themselves somehow.

One of the 2 people not enjoying the scene will turn out to be mental and leave, and the other person is you.

I've been on sets my whole life because of my dad. He just slapped words on paper like peanut butter, smashed it all together, copied it, gave it out to everyone including studio heads who chomped fat cigars and shoved it back at him and said YES! LET'S SHOOT THIS! He spent his whole life just slapping on the words, shoving it all out there, and then tap dancing on the set because it was all so easy.

I spent my life around movies, but that quiet girl over there in the corner writing everything down and then just keeping it all to myself because I was happy just with my OWN reaction to my stuff. Audience of one. Why not? I was hilarious.

But yesterday there I was, with my helper co-director who was like a whole Olympic ice skating team, she had scrambled eggs for the crew, she ran the set, she talked technology, well oiled herself, she easily oiled everyone's creaks. And for everyone else, the set was like any set. There was lighting, and people running in and out fetching apple boxes and a warm fake family feeling that I love and a weird sound person and jokes that made you laugh because you were so fucking tired. The only tiny difference for me was that my chest was ripped open in the front, stretched out around the whole apartment floor, nailed into the corners, and then everyone was walking all over it until all the human fleshy squish was gone and it was just a shredded, helpless floor. This took several dozen hours. I thought I was okay and then at lunch eating a burrito on the stairs with Nathan I was wondering why I couldn't taste my burrito, and why I could barely swallow it because of some weird huge lump in the side of my throat that turned out to be OHH anxiety. Hello friend, I didn't know they made you in throat balls size. Just hiding over there because I was so busy. Didn't want to bother me, but happy to finally be noticed. Hey. This is the real you, paco. Letting you know. Something is wrong.

My friend texted me in the middle of the shoot when I said it was taking so long and he said "it's all about the process, baby. And a little about if people think it sucks."

So no matter how I felt, putting myself on that set and being there as a walking representation of all that I have been up to now, everything I had, I got in the car, brought and gave, hopefully, humbly and at some points numbly. 

Most importantly I put my little paper boat in the stream, pushed it with one brave finger, and watched it go.