Match Frame

Thoughts from an American editor and filmmaker in New Zealand about film and video production and post-production. Plus whatever else I feel like talking about.

Location: Balmoral, Auckland, New Zealand

A work in progress.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

not eaten by rats

I'm sure you were all concerned about that.

A month into the job here at GBI. A friend wrote me yesterday, presuming that my radio silence on the blog meant I was quite busy. Yes and no; when there's down time, it's DOWN time. I've read, IIRC, five books in a month (THE ECHO MAKER and THE TIME OF OUR SINGING by Richard Powers; HOW TO BE ALONE by Jonathan Franzen; HOW TO BE HUNGRY by Dave Eggers; GHOSTWRITTEN by David Mitchell; all are recommended, most highly.) There's a TV and DVD player here now (watched: SHORT CUTS, CAT PEOPLE, SARABAND, ENRON: THE SMARTEST GUYS IN THE ROOM, DOPPELGANGER, the CREATURE COMFORTS TV series, THE HOLY GIRL, ON THE RUN, THIS SO-CALLED DISASTER, THE RED SHOES, and EXPERIMENT IN TERROR), but no Internet access, no neighbors that we know, no local place to go to, and when it pisses down with rain enough to cancel all flights on and off the island (as it did on Thursday) not much to do except crack a bottle of wine, gossip, play cards, and so on. At the barn on the hill in Okupu, we're far away from everything, though as time goes by, my perception of distance changes.

For example, yesterday morning I walked to Claris Texas, the cafe in Claris, the closest place where you can exchange money for goods and/or services without using the telephone. (Actually, that's not quite true - there's a backpackers slightly closer, but one thing I don't need is lodging.) It's about a 4-5 km walk to Claris, takes me roughly 45-50 minutes. (Last time I did it, the entirety of At The Drive-In's IN/CASINO/OUT plus two songs off that new Converge album which I don't get the appeal of. This time, a bunch of tracks by Cafe Tacuba, courtesy of the estimable Carlos Anaconda. Anyway.) I got to the cafe, and several other people from the show were there (what with it being, like, one of five restaurants on the islands, and near a cluster of residents). After chatting for a while, some of us took an entirely unplanned walked to Kaitoke Beach, the third time I've been there, but it was quite nice and I'm always astonished that there's just nobody there. Well, I mean, we were. Also, I managed to get a ride back up the hill to home from the shuttle driver, who was taking one of our number to work.

The show? It's what it is. (If you're like my mom, you've been following it breathlessly at the official web site and doubtless have formed your own opinion.) Am I being coy? I am. Non-disclosure agreements. Best thing is not to talk about it, which is not meant to sound ominous, just saying. I will say that I enjoy the people I'm working with, and that the nature of the setup means that I'm working with a different edit producer every day, which means I've really learned a lot about how to talk about editing, what my idiosyncrasies are as an editor, and how to best work with different producers. Things have settled into a regular schedule, which means a week of days, then a week of nights, with Thursday/Friday off. This may all change again, but at least for the last week the call sheets and roster have matched, so I'm optimistic it will be true until the end of April at least.

I'm at "home" and it's 4:43 PM and working nights tonight (10 pm - 8 am). The wiser among you would suggest I should be asleep, and you'd be right, but after going to bed at 9 AM I woke up at 1 PM and haven't been able to get back to sleep. In fact, I'm the giddiest I've been in a long time. Reason being is that I've booked a trip after this finishes that goes to Barcelona in time for the Primavera Music Festival and leaves from Venice three weeks later. Not sure how I'm getting from point A to point B, or what my itinerary is (other priorities are the Guggenheim in Bilbao, Spain and the Fondation Maeght in St. Paul, France; other suggestions are highly encouraged). But it should be awesome, although I think I should be more daunted than I am by my complete lack of knowledge of Spanish, Catalan, or Italian, not to mention my entirely half-assed French.

(Plus I have a two day layover in Hong Kong on the way home.)

Okay, I'm going to brush my teeth and try to get some more sleep. As a postlude, the soundtrack to my time here, should you wish to play along at home, is something like this:

1. Flogging Molly, "If I Ever Leave This World Alive"
2. Beirut, "Elephant Gun"
3. Arcade Fire, "Intervention"
4. The Hold Steady, "You Can Make Him Like You"
5. Alkaline Trio, "Rooftops"
6. Hot Water Music, "Bleeder"
7. New Order, "Ceremony"
8. Jesu, "Conquerer"
9. Jurassic 5, "Contribution"
10. Skatalites, "Dick Tracy"

and, of course, the whole of THE EARTH IS NOT A COLD DEAD PLACE by Explosions In The Sky. Been listening to the Old 97's this afternoon, dancing around a bit, and really enjoying being alive.

I hope you are all well.


Blogger Scoutie said...

I am well, and glad that you are, too.

2/4/07 6:40 AM  

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