Monday, June 18, 2012


So, The Girl texted me during the show last night and wanted to know if I wanted to do something spontaneous and fun for Pride. Since I've done little else for Pride this year (shame upon my GLBT head), I said yes and so arranged to meet up with her later at Hamburger Mary's (actually the block party across the street).
I got there and she kissed me hello and we watched a hysterical guy called Prince Poppycock perform. The songs had good beats and I bounced alongside The Girl, who held my hand basically all night. To my utter joy and contentment. We danced and sang along to "Bohemian Rhapsody? and took a picture with the performer (who had awesome gold glittery boots).
Afterwards. The Girl, her friend and I went walking, quickly deciding to go to Voodoo Doughnuts. I learned earlier that day that you can buy three hour old doughnuts in a bucket for $5 and this is what we decided to do. The doughnuts on the top were fine, but they got slimier and grosser the further down we moved. They were basically sludge at the bottom. So we ate our fill and wandered around Portland offering the remains to strangers. A meth addict took the whole bucket and we walked back to their car.
We made out a little and then they drove me home, because who wants to walk the streets when there are sugar-high meth addicts? Not me, my lieblings. After another long goodbye kiss and promises of noodles and gelato for our next date, The Girl left and I pulled a Charlie in my building. I got into the elevator and danced to Walking On Sunshine, playing in my head.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

A Day in the Life of an Extra

We begin in holding, filling out paperwork so we can be paid for the unknown number of hours we are about to spent doing unknown amounts of scenes. This particular day it meant over twelve hours spent at the sound stage and one change of clothes that those of us dressed in our pajamas didn't have. Cut to wardrobe fittings, which when you are just an extra are kinda slapdash. The first pair of pants were too small to fit up my thighs and hips, while the second pair kept threatening to slide down them. But since I'm human furniture, there was no just right. Well, until Monday when I get to work again and bring my own clothes.

The work this day involved pretending an empty, awkward cardboard carried a giant TV and that I went in and out of a store about twelve different ways in different configurations. But the joy of being an extra is not in the work you do, which is often sporadic, ever-changing, tiring, and boring.
The best things about being an extra are working with other people and making new friends by the end of the day.

Because even if you know nobody there (and in this day's case, even if you do have a friend already), you will start talking to people you are near to. While you wait for shots to be set up, while you wait in holding, eventually you will start talking to someone, anybody. Most of the time it begins as comments on how tired you are or something about the set or location, but talk will come.

Another wonderful thing is watching the behind-the-scenes of (in this case) a national TV show. Some people find it ruins the magic, the mystique behind television, but I love it. I love watching the people running and sitting around and trying to figure out what they do. Or watching people who are highly paid actors, who may even have prestigious awards play around like they are a group of friends who just happen to be surrounded by crew and cameras. Sometimes, Segue Football is invented, sometimes footballs are thrown and missed and you get to toss a pigskin to an Academy-Award winning actor. Do you get to do that being IT or a receptionist? No my friend, you do not.

It's poorly paid and tiring and invisible and throwaway work most people will never see or notice. Nevertheless, I wouldn't give up the days like this where, for a moment, you are part of television magic.