Thursday, December 30, 2010

More Life Stuff

Well, I saw this & was quite gratified. My road wasn't even plowed until maybe right near the 7 a.m. deadline promised by the Director of Sanitation. I didn't go to bed until 4 & we didn't hear anyone driving down our street. This silence on our block for days on end will never happen again since cars are always driving down.

I'm also glad I didn't vote for Bloomberg & think the mayor of Newark kicks ass for going out into the mess. That guy gives a damn about his city & isn't a classist asshole who's too good to trudge out there. I tell you, if I were the mother of that baby who died in Brooklyn b/c the emergency folk couldn't get to where she was due to lack of snow cleanup I'd be going to see Bloomberg in person and demanding him to justify his elitism. You can break people if you're dedicated & when you bring a tragic situation right to someone's face, you're more likely to succeed. That's why I think kids should see the Censored 11 cartoons if you really want to teach them why racism is bad. It brings the spirit of those times & shows you racism instead of just telling you about it.

Things are much better for me but lately, I've been concerned lately about a close friend of mine. As you know from reading this blog, religion was quite pervasive in my childhood. I even went to a religious private school at one time. This close friend was, like me, from a religious household. Like many others, she also married young and stayed in our hometown.

She was in this tableau of the happy housewife/loving mother until very recently. Now I think she, like anyone else, should have gotten the opportunity to sow wild oates, date around & spend time figuring out her own identity, what "happily ever after" would mean to her, etc. I have to agree with a gentleman I met one night in Buckhead when I was at a club in Atlanta. He was in town on business & if he'd not had an early morning meeting, he said he'd have wanted to do the nasty w/me (not those exact words but you get the idea). Aside from that (and being cute enough for me to seriously consider it but only w/protection), he told me point blank that I shouldn't even consider getting married before turning 25. This is sage advice for anyone, if you ask me. You should spend time figuring out yourself, having experiences to draw upon when you're old, etc.

So, unfortunately my friend's unhappiness has hit the breaking point. She & her estranged hubby have a child together and there's been accusations that she committed adultery.

Remember when I said she was also from a religious family? Her father was livid & actually fired her for no good reason. He's apparently also living up to Christian hypocrisy by acting like anything but, including injecting himself into this private situation.

It gets even more complicated in that a new guy has entered the picture, has similar relationship baggage & that his baby mama (as I'm not sure precisely if she's an ex-fiancee or ex-girlfriend) hates my friend. I heard about a possible new wrinkle to this tale that makes my friend more like a Jerry Springer cliche than the church goer I remember her to be.

I left her a message on Christmas Eve wishing her a good holiday & wanting to talk to her. You do that for friends. Problem is, I've not heard from her & only hear about her through my family. This is someone who's like a sister to me & she should know that she doesn't need to put on some happy show or happy face for me. If I became a celebrity, she's one of the few people I could be myself around & not wonder if she had an angle.

I'm also not a judgmental person & don't consider religion a panacea. Plenty of people do just fine without going to church every Sunday or falling in line w/the preaching hypocrites.

After I heard about the potentially new wrinkle, it occurred to me that her dad is probably disappointed & feels like a failure as a parent. I still don't condone his behavior + think it confirms every non-religious person's hatred of fundies, born agains & their ilk.

Do I approve of all this? Hell no! I feel like my friend is turning into some of my sister's former friends who put men ahead of their kids. If these assholes are the same ones trying to have me breed, they've added the sin of hypocrisy to their misdeeds.

I'm really hoping that new wrinkle is a false alarm or I'm going to have to say something that will probably be taken badly but I strongly believe should be done for all that is good and fair in this world. I also can't condone anyone emotionally abusing a child since I had to go through that myself as a child. I remember lots of hurtful things that were said to me: for instance, an aunt telling me & my sister that she loved my cousins more than us.

I also feel like I'm being snubbed & that this person may not deserve to be a close friend if I can't get that reciprocation. After all, my husband's my closest friend & he wouldn't shut me out from a problem. I prefer to have quality over quantity in any aspect of my life & people are no exception.

Where's the friendship if you don't even bother to talk to a close friend? If it's not wanting to hear the truth from me, too bad. I acknowledge that your life is yours alone to live but I'm not a Yes Woman. I'm not interested in being one either.

Quickest way to avoid becoming a Yes (Wo)man? Become an attorney. Attorneys are supposed to deliver the truth, good or bad. If they don't, they get blamed when things fall apart.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Start of the Zombie Apocalypse in Pictures

At least that's what it looks like in my area of Queens.  Since the blizzard on Sunday, my street has looked like this:

Nope, I'm not kidding.  This was taken earlier this afternoon while I was in my car.  I have a few more choice images here that will disgust you if you live in a major city or expect your city to, oh I don't know, CLEAN UP THE FREAKING SNOW.  Take a gander at these:

Considering that the road looked like this as I was walking back home after this little journey,

I seriously wonder how the neighborhood's going to be after a few more days of this & no garbage collection.  Bloomberg claims there's snow cleanup going on here; I have to say "HA!" to that.  You can't get anyone on the city's complaint line or it's hopelessly busy while jerks like this guy get away with this type of cleanup job:

Here's what happens in real time when the streets are cleaned like this:

See that?  Tip your delivery people very well if you're expecting someone to show up in this mess.  I've not even gotten my mail since before Christmas.  I shared my pics on line in the hope that action is taken.  My husband hopes that maybe some news publication would buy one of my pictures since I got some unbelievable sights as well.

Oh, and it gets better.  In some cases, you have to decide between stepping in fresh dog mess or walking in this deep snow.

So here's a sign we're officially in the zombie apocalypse:

When your mayor is a classist jerk who only cares about Manhattan, you get sights like this:

This is called "citizen action."  People taking matters into their own hands when their city government has completely failed them.  Next thing you know, we'll have rotting garbage piles to add to the snow ocean that is my neighborhood.

One charming thing I saw was these people creating their own little snow hideout.  I had to get pics of it b/c when I was walking by, two people were actually inside these holes.

Those people were awesome but I asked to take the pic since I didn't want to be intrusive & rude.  I don't photograph for those purposes.

Now I had another motive for taking these pictures.  My husband's employer had the gall to open his place of business today.  He doesn't work in the medical field, law enforcement or even for NYC Transit or the Sanitation Department.  In other words, no one has ever died because his place of employment wasn't open at this precise nanosecond.  Then a number of people who came in were completely rude; screw you if you're not in need of medical treatment or a ride to the hospital, police station, what have you.  I wouldn't be nice to you in those circumstances; I'd point out the snow ocean & tell you to go dive in it.

Add to this that most employers don't care if you live or die when asking you to report to a job that doesn't entail showing up in these conditions as a matter of course.  You can save the CEO's life & get rewarded by being fired.  Don't expect loyalty from your employees if that's how you operate & don't expect people to risk life & limb to go to a job for non-essential services.

I swear, if someone could come up with a chemical compound that melted snow instantly without harming anything underneath it or polluting the environment and just reduced the snow to harmless vapor then that person would make a ton of money.  I'd certainly want some myself.  How about you?

See Facebook or ask me privately if you'd like to see more evidence of the utter trashiness & stupidity of higher ups who wouldn't traipse around in this ocean of snow themselves.

Hurry & Enter My Rant Contest!!!

Accepting entries until January 3rd. See the rules here!

A new entry on just how snow cleanup is going outside Manhattan will be posted shortly, complete w/pictures of my journey to the local post office.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Blizzards & Other Disasters: How They Bring People Together

So I'm happy that my family in the South FINALLY got a White Christmas. The last one in their area of NC was close to 30 years ago. I told my mom to make sure my nephew gets to play in the snow + if he wants to get tons of snow to play in, he can always visit me in NYC. CT also gets tons of snow.

I remember first moving to CT & after going through that scary blizzard to visit the law school, driving through yet more snowfall from West Haven after going to this guy's house one evening early on in my law school career. I also remember getting my car stuck in the snow & a guy coming to my rescue on that. My law school classmates who were w/me that night instantly thought he was cute (or if you want to use the British term, "fancied," which I think fits here & should become part of the American vernacular) & he hung out w/us that whole evening. I was simply grateful my car was no longer in the snow.

So that first Northeast winter, I got an instant education on the pitfalls of mass snowfall.

I find it telling & interesting that natural disasters tend to bring people together. Granted, you don't need snowfall to make that happen. Power outages or getting stuck on a subway can do it as well. Still, I was living in Atlanta during the 2003 blackout & for 9/11. Since I'm sitting here in NYC while the snow steadily falls (and am thrilled I won't have to drive in it), I wanted to wax eloquently about a particular bad weather experience in college.

Atlanta saw some bad weather once in a while but no blizzards, very few ice storms and you'd see a lot of people wanting it to snow so we'd get out of classes.

One Sunday in January (could have been February but I think it was before my birthday) we got an ice storm. There were some visitors from my sorority helping us in our recruitment efforts & building our colony (I joined my chapter when it was a simply a colony, making me one of the founding members). At that time, I'd only been in the sorority for a couple months. I didn't know a lot of the girls too well & heard talk about people but didn't know enough about the subjects of that talk to form my own opinion of them. Having been talked about myself, I was not the sort to condemn people just for sleeping with people or getting drunk somewhere.

So, I remember hearing a knock on my dorm room door & going to answer. My RA was there, telling me that there was an ice storm. She may have been evacuating the dorm to the student center but my memory escapes me here.

I got dressed & went to meet with my sorority sisters, since we'd had our colony building activities scheduled at the same place that I had to attend anyway. When we were finished with our meeting basically talking about the lack of power, we walked into the dining hall to find food heated by sterno & classmates saying there was no power.

So since we had no events continuing at the moment, my family lived very far away & I didn't drive, I just decided to hang out. I ended up hanging out with a sorority sister who became one of my close friends in college since we were trying to get in touch with our parents, figure out what was going on, etc. I had no reason to go back to my dorm since it was abandoned, there was no power, etc.

We ended up going shopping at Lenox Square Mall, eating a hot meal & I got some undies at Victoria's Secret.

After we got back to campus, we were told to go to the student center immediately. We go into the darkened building, where the powers that be were trying to evacuate the campus due to the lack of power (and by extension, the lack of heat). I figured I'd be staying on campus that night since again, no family nearby & I didn't drive.

Instead another sorority sister (who was the colony president as well as my big sister), told me I was going to spend the evening at her house since her parents had power. I went back to my dorm to pack up and then met w/her as she told me.

Turns out me & some other classmates I knew to varying length (male & female) were going to this sorority sister's house. She'd talked about her parents being cool & not having an issue w/guy friends spending the night. This was a total 180 from my parents, considering that we didn't have a home environment you'd want to bring people into + my mom is still quite puritanical today. She was even more so when we were younger.

Sure enough, my big sister was dead accurate about her parents. They didn't bat an eye at seeing our crowd or seem put out by us all being there. We just settled down, watched movies, hung out & stayed warm. The next day, we did more of the same & attempted to find out when we'd be having class again (since the university pretty much had to cancel classes with power not being restored by Monday morning + the previous night's evacuation). On Monday evening, my dorm had power again so I & the other refugees from that dorm went back to our cable TV, showers and solitude.

Even now, you can form alliances when you're clearing snow off your car. My husband's helped people get their cars out as they've helped him with our car. Let's face it, when technology isn't available or there's some crisis preventing you from staying at home you can see human kindness manifest itself in strange ways. Sometimes, it's the people you wouldn't think would help you or someone you'd never talked to before.

I suppose it's why I find crisis interesting. You learn things about people & see things you wouldn't otherwise see. There's deviations from the facade people like to place up about themselves & I think it forms bonds you might not otherwise get. That's also the reason I think one of the best ways to get to know someone is taking a road trip w/the person: the facade eventually vanishes & you get insight into the real person if the trip is long enough.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

How NOT to Raise $ For a Film

I've seen these 2 ads on Craig's List & I feel a rant coming on.

First off is this one:

Feature-Length Movie (w/Emmy-Talent) Seeks Actor/Actress/Co-Producer
Date: 2010-12-22, 11:18AM EST
Reply to: [Errors when replying to ads?]

If you are an excellent actress/actor and fit the part, you can become involved w/award-winning talent. Our last movie nearing completion includes work from "the next George Lucas" stated by ABC World News Tonight, artist which directed a feature movie for Harvey Wienstein(Exec Prod of Kill Bill, Lord of the Ring) and musical talent with platinum-album work & hits for Beyounce and Christina Aguilara.

Do you want to be part of our next full-feature movie w/a screenplay by an Emmy-Award winning writer? You must be able to co-produce with us by contributing as little as $2,400 (a small amount overall budget).

Please send headshot & write in email " Yes I can act. Also, I want to possibly be a co-producer."

This is not an offer or a solicitation. This is an audition notice to actors/actresses.

* it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests
* Compensation: no pay

PostingID: 2125363536

I remember going onto either the SAG or AFTRA website recently & reading that it's a violation of union rules to make your actors bankroll their own project. It's one thing if someone volunteers to do it but this clearly makes funding a requirement.

So, I wrote this initial response:

I do hope you're NOT asking actors to invest money. I know for a fact it's against SAG rules & you're not making any friends by being a classist jerk. There's lots of talented people in the world who aren't millionaires & don't have thousands of dollars to invest money. Are you going to start charging crew people or act entitled to freebies from professionals offering expensive services?

Find your investors separately like you're supposed to. How about crowd funding on a fundraising website? Those are better options than getting in trouble w/SAG or making actors spend money to work with you. I have a bad taste in my mouth just reading this ad & I know a thing or two about the industry.

Today, it occurred to me that's another very good reason why you don't want to do this. It has to do with a basic principle of securities law & is something that anyone who's worked w/a knowledgeable lawyer knows about. I'm not revealing it here since I don't give free legal advice; go ask your knowledgeable attorney.

You also know that people asking for this sort of thing will also act entitled to free editing services, music composition, legal help, art design, etc. All things that cost money if you want it done correctly (unless, of course, you've got friends who like you).

So, when I saw the same ad AGAIN, I decided to respond in this way:

Subject: Yes I can act. NO, I don't want to be extorted for money b/c you're too lazy to follow securities law.

More evidence that you're full of crap: clearly you don't know beans about securities law & classes of investors.

No sane filmmaker would EVER suggest that actors fund their own project unless that actor was super-rich. But then again, why would an actor who had the money to fund a project pay to work for someone??? They could form their OWN company & do their OWN project where THEY had the final say. That's what famous actors do.

Again, if you're such a big shot, why are you posting such ridiculousness??? You should have a competent attorney who'd tell you exactly why it's career suicide to cast for projects in this manner. Otherwise, you're just a scam artist who should be outed & blacklisted to the industry.

I can't wait to see what these dodos have to say for themselves. No credible filmmaker I know would EVER do this since they want talented people, not rich people, acting in their projects. If you are an actor with both, again you could do it by yourself or ask your friends. No need for you to bother w/morons like this who will bring you down & ruin your reputation.

Just got a notation saying this ad was no longer active. Thank God!

Here's ad #2:

Actor With Investor Contacts (Downtown)
Date: 2010-12-21, 10:26PM EST
Reply to: [Errors when replying to ads?]

A feature film with famous talent attached is looking for an actor can raise the remaining capital. A limited amount needs to be raised. The actor will receive a principal role and percentage of the film.

* it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests
* Compensation: TBD

PostingID: 2124843936

A little less offensive, but still makes no sense. I had to write this response:

I certainly hope you aren't attempting to get an actor to pay for the project out of pocket. That's not only stupid under securities law but violates union rules.

How about doing your OWN work to find investors since if an actor had investor money, why wouldn't that person just find their own people, work w/their friends or create their own company w/any number of projects they could star in??

Or how about getting your "famous talent" to find investors? Shouldn't THEY know rich people? If they want to make the project happen, they might be motivated to make some effort.

I think it's a very fair question. We didn't have famous people in our early works & we didn't demand our actors to fund it. Nor did we base casting decisions on who had a sugar daddy/mommy. My sorority didn't even base membership decisions on people's net worth or connections; we considered things like having to be around the person all the time & how that person would represent our group.

I know it gets done but in the scenarios I know of, the actor w/the sugar daddy (usually this was a woman) already established that she had talent & wouldn't ruin a project. It was more of a bonus to working w/someone who had talent than an exercise in seeking out some bored rich kid w/no acting chops. Some people will call themselves "actors" even if they are unconvincing, behave like divas & make audiences want to throw rotten tomatoes at them.

Again, if you had the money to fund films, why not make your own project & work w/your friends? You'd get the final say, could work w/whoever you wanted + be the master of your artistic integrity.

So, actors don't fall for this crap. Real filmmakers who people want to work with & who will produce quality work cast based on talent.

Access to money will speed things up & it might help your chances if the selection is close but sane people don't go on these hunts. They look for investors separately & wouldn't put someone's boy/girl toy in the lead w/out an audition or at least a decent resume proving the person has real talent.

At the end of the day, everyone has their reputation to consider.

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Blog's First Press Moment & Getting to Hear Me Sing

I wondered why my reader count was up last week & last night, I figured out why. Avvo linked to it in their 2010 Legal Wrap Up, Part II!!

I've never linked this blog to places like my LinkedIn profile & so called "business" social media. There are a few reasons for this:

1. I can't imagine the typical lawyer really being interested in anything I have to say. After all, countless attorneys have made me feel like some clueless neophyte or just seemed appalled that I dared to have a personality or spoke to them as a colleague and not one of my "betters."

Let me tell you something: I don't have ANY "betters." There's me and there's you. You might be talented & you might know more about something than me but as far as I go, no one is "better" than me. Respecting someone's expertise doesn't mean you diminish yourself as a human being.

I don't suck up to anyone & if I wouldn't do that for some celebrity everyone's heard of, why would I do it for some attorney who isn't even a household name?

My attorney friends & entertainment law attorneys? Sure. Friends know I'm off beat & the entertainment attorneys who actively work in the industry can at least appreciate my creativity/warped world view/whatever uniqueness I have that makes me capable of writing a blog anyone would bother reading.

But the BigLaw types? Why would they read it? I feel like this blog may as well be written in a foreign language when it comes to them. I don't get their mentality & I'd be shocked if any managed to get mine. The last people on Earth I'd expect to be my fans are any BigLaw partners since the anti-establishment aura from me has to be nauseating.

2. Most attorneys are sticks in the mud. If you're a friend who's a lawyer, this is not directed at you. I figure if you're an attorney who can stand me, it means you have a personality & are not overly caught up in the "prestige of being an attorney" BS.

Per capita, though I'd say entertainment people have better personalities & a sense of humor. My raves from this blog have largely come from people in the business, creative types & those working in it. You have to be at least a little anti-establishment if you want to work in this business since that lends to passion, thinking outside the box, etc.

3. This is an anti-censorship space. I don't think a lot of established lawyer types would like what I have to say or my observations. It's not as though I really need to worry about blacklisting the way the law school scam bloggers might have to (though I still think if you hate the game that much, you should just embrace your exclusion, give the proverbial middle finger & do something that doesn't require sucking up to these "evil, greedy bastards", as you call them).

I do, however, have incentives to avoid being harassed about my entertainment connections or dealing with whiny people getting butt hurt because they aren't the grand humanitarians they think they are (such as bar associations who have no financial respite for people with NO MONEY).

I'm not going to write or allow this blog to continue if it means I have to censor my honest feelings & reactions to particular situations, however controversial. I will not condone using social networking searches as a pre-condition to an interview or playing Twitter nanny. Nor will I defend child molesters or change who I am to be "politically correct." I could see more attorneys whining about my exercise of free speech than entertainment folk, especially considering the BigLaw types don't have free speech rights or freedom of expression. The draconian policies I've read & heard about in those firms seem to support this.

This press moment took me by total surprise since I'm not on here to be intellectual or bore you with law review style tomes. One of my other sources of discomfort w/most attorneys is the fact that I don't lord my intelligence over other people nor pretend to know what I don't.

Another piece of great news: I learned today that I can now add audio samples to my personal website. This means you can finally hear my singing voice if you want to. Now, you can decide for yourself if I'm full of shit when I talk about my experiences as a singer or if maybe I have some real talent. Those who've heard me tend to favor option #2.

Once I find a good program that allows me to record longer clips in mp3 format (hopefully w/the best audio quality I can muster), I'll be all set. Thanks to my business partner, I was able to find a conversion program to convert my current wav files to mp3.

The sucky party will be having to hear myself sing. I'm so self-conscious about seeing or hearing my work; my inner perfectionist tends to come out in full force. I always critique myself, probably more harshly than anyone else ever could.

Soon, though (ideally before Christmas) you'll get to hear sound clips. At least I can now send them to people who want to hire for paid singing gigs. Soon I'll be able to simply send my website address (at least if I don't mind being public w/a total stranger).

Sunday, December 19, 2010

What the Hell is Up With People Violating Federal Law or Playing God When They're Just Customer Service Reps???

I just saw this blog post in a community I watch that reminded me of What Would You Do come to life. For those who don't know of it, there's an ABC Primetime TV show segment of 20/20 in America called What Would You Do? & it's a hidden camera situation show that creates scenarios to see how real people react to particular situations.

This particular post reminded me of episodes they've done where the waiter refused service to drag queens or gay couples with children. Guess what my take on that kind of thing is: do your damn job & leave your beliefs out of it! If you work in a service industry, your job is to serve.

It is NOT your job to preach at people, attempt to convert them to your viewpoint or do anything else aside from providing equally competent (ideally good) service that everyone else who walks through the door gets. If you want to preach at people or be a bigot, do it at YOUR church or on your OWN time.

Don't do it on your employer's time! Lawyers are required under ethics rules to simply turn down a case if they have philosophical differences on racial or gender matters. This is what I'd do if some waiter or other service person asked me to defend them in a situation like this; I have no sympathy for minimum wage service people who want to play missionary.

I worked in retail for 7 years, including in the lingerie/sleepwear department of JcPenney. If any man had asked me about lingerie at our store in a larger size, I would never have pried into his reasons or purposes for such questions; I'd simply answer them & do the job I got paid to do. One of my co-workers told me about such a situation happening to her: there was no tirade or discussion about the morality of cross dressing.

And stuff like this? Or this?

Let me break it down for you, retards: this is 2010!!! NOT 1950. We have a little thing called "civil rights." The U.S. Supreme Court decided in the early '60s that restaurants far away from major interstates can not even have segregated seating since that indeed affects interstate commerce, something the federal government has every right to control if certain states want to allow open bigotry.

If this didn't happen, you'd still have segregated bathrooms in the Deep South if Prom Night in Mississippi is any indication of current racial attitudes down there.

Apparently that's a foreign concept to Mr. Navarro, employee of Con Edison. If I were the Con Edison management, I would fire this man in an instant. Not only is he breaking NY state law, he apparently missed his calling to work with the Westboro Baptist Cult folk. You want to protest against gay people? Maybe you should join them. Spare me any talk of "Oh, this person has a family & they need a job": there's thousands of unemployed people in NYC right now who I'm sure could do this job much better and for half the salary being paid to this low life. I'm quite certain those Westboro cult folk would take care of him & his family very nicely considering they're about as beloved in America as Adolf Hitler.

I also know of a club in Manhattan that is apparently racist (the Continental) & based on what I've read about their practices, I'd never go there either. In fact, you'd better hope I don't see discrimination happening b/c I will get in your face. If you're some little underling, your boss will know about it & you'll probably get fired for exposing the company to potential big money, high publicity lawsuits. If you're the owner, I will probably call you an idiot to your face.

And if you're an actor who's doing this sort of thing??? You'll definitely not move up in your career if I see such a display since I'll tell everyone I know about it. So will anyone else in the business since no film company, no producer, no big shot needs the legal liability coming with hiring a bigot (discriminating against gay people DOES, in fact, make you a bigot). Not to mention pissing off any other minority in the business who may have worked with the big shots for years & established themselves far more than your little discriminating butt ever will.

If you're the victim, I will walk up & pull the lawyer card on the bitchy server, customer service rep, whomever. My spouse & I will also leave without paying + bigot, you'll be lucky if you simply get no tip & don't have to call the cops for your own protection. To give you an idea of my capacity for asserting myself, I read this story a few days ago & realized I'd do the exact same thing if I were in that situation.

In fact, my husband would love to see this Mr. Navarro fired considering that we as the customers of a business have every right not to bankroll homophobia, racial discrimination or anything else we find offensive. Having a bigot on your payroll, in my book, is indeed bankrolling discrimination. It's a reason I'll never give money to my undergrad: I'm not bankrolling a racist fraternity that they continue to allow on that campus.

Now I know there are racists, religious zealots, whatever who have jobs. Keep your beliefs to yourself (not let it enter your working life) & it won't be an issue. Once you do, however, it becomes your employer's and your customers' issue. If you can't evolve or at least keep your bigotry in check, I suggest moving to your own island or starting your own cult with like minded people in a distant land. For God's sake, don't live in a major city filled with people who are different from you.

And personally, I'd love to bomb those cesspools of bigots in an attempt to clean out the gene pool but that's a different story.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Extra Gig #2: Driving Through Brooklyn, Freezing My Butt Off & Another Nail in the Ugly Girl Coffin

While still waiting to hear about the job opportunity (as of this moment, I STILL haven't heard anything though as of yesterday they are still interested in talking to me & my calls have been returned when I wasn't around), I saw an extra gig seeking "attractive news reporters w/cars." Since my car was not one of the undesired colors or styles, I decided to submit myself for the sake of having something to do as well as getting exercise for my car.

* When the car battery dies if you don't run it for 2 days, you tend to get concerned about making sure it gets some movement. *

So, I get selected for this role. It requires me to drive 15 minutes from home into an area of Brooklyn that's fairly decent. This time, the show was Law & Order: SVU. If you see me there, again I'll be shocked. I haven't watched that one either, so this will be another instance where someone else tells me if I'm on there. Again, I was the only redhead & no one even came close to looking like me. There were also fewer people this time.

I would really like to find people living in my city who look enough like me to really pass for me (being a natural redhead w/my shade is a prime requirement); they would likely have the same problems I've had & might also like the idea of fooling folk by switching places.

In middle school, there was a redhead who wore her hair straight while I wore mine curly & longer. Her name also started w/an "M" and people were always mixing me up with her. This mistaken identity issue even came up years later when I was at the Senior Class Picnic & the DJ claimed I'd dated a guy that she dated. The guy was merely a friend of mine in middle school; seems he came out after high school but there was talk of him being gay in high school. I was like "That was the other girl, not me!" I'm sure there are still some things people will swear I did b/c rumors about me were so pervasive despite my trying to debunk them, I just played along after a while. Yes, I DID go w/that guy in middle school who never said a word to me & was popular while I was being harassed by the gossipy bitch girls!

If my middle school/high school life had been Hollywood, I was definitely a tabloid celebrity. I had to deal w/most of the same people so I didn't really get much of a chance at reinvention.

So, here's how experience #2 went (no episode secrets will be revealed):

A) When I went to the parking area before my call time, there was NO parking + I could not get to the street I needed to be on. I called up Central Casting to tell them about this. They alerted the powers that be. Eventually I did get to a spot & made it inside, though a little late.

I did apologize for my lateness & apparently many people had that particular problem. The on-set reps handling check-ins were very understanding. More examples of the professionalism I like to see.

B) I saw yet another actor from the whole previous TV network scam. Not just any actor, though. This was the infamous one who irritated people & pissed them off. Apparently, this individual also ticked off someone I know from another sphere.

I'll give this individual a few things though: I won't hear about this person sleeping w/anyone to get to the top or putting more importance on background work than needed. This person also took my advice & got an entertainment lawyer to help her. I do have slightly more respect for her than I did previously.

Why do I keep seeing people who know me from that on these gigs? Killing my whole mission here.

C) I decide to bring in my heels that I normally wear w/business suits, closed toe & very corporate looking.

Unfortunately, the front of my feet were only separated from the windy, cold weather in shooting with pantyhose (you'd have seen my tights). I was outside a good chunk of time & had to run for my role. My feet became blocks of ice, I had no hat or gloves due to wardrobe's instructions & I wasn't sure if I could sprint in those shoes w/cold feet.

However, when it was time to go I did rise to the occasion. I made it where I needed to & did damn good for my feet being ice blocks. Guess those days of wearing heeled shoes all the time in high school came back to me.

One of the fellow background actors was shocked I actually did it. Hey, I work behind the scenes & believe in doing unto others. Call it an endurance test.

This is nothing compared to what the lead actress had to do. Apparently, she had to be on a cold car hood in much less clothing for her scene. I, at least, had a coat & scarf + was wearing pants.

D) Our holding area was in a very cold warehouse. Everyone was bundled up while waiting. Taking your gloves off wasn't smart in that setting.

Near the end of the day when I was on a higher floor to make phone calls (as I had no cell reception in the holding area & the bathroom did have reception), I was telling a crew person that they are much better people than me for working in these cold conditions. They are, in fact.

E) My car came in for pictures that may appear in the program. You'd see me on my cell phone + my coat open at the wardrobe person's instruction. I followed my direction very well & as I was leaving to go back, I was picked up then told to wait somewhere else in the scene. Eventually, we were not used & I got to go back inside.

I made it back home a little after 10 & did manage to find parking in my limited parking neighborhood.

Now for the takeaway lessons (as I feel maybe once I've done about 4-5 & ideally on different sets/situations, I'll be done w/the learning & observations).

1. There are extra roles I will not consider or take. Some examples are:

* Prostitute, escort, stripper, other "adult" type parts. I don't want to have to explain that sort of thing to attorneys from the bar associations I belong to, investors & anyone else I have to interact with on a business basis. Let's not even talk about explaining that to my 7 year old nephew or my parents, in-laws, etc.
* Rape or slasher movie victim w/out some lines. Again, don't want to have to explain that one.
* "Ugly" roles. Let's fact it: Central Casting or whomever is responsible for background on these 2 shows has spoken otherwise as to my looks. I probably do look like the TV version of particular things but I don't think I can convince anyone I can play "ugly."
* Anything involving nudity, kissing others (male, female or anywhere in between), sex scenes, etc. Being happily married & business credibility cover those reasons nicely.

Let's add exterior shots to that list if I'm not wearing temperature appropriate clothing. I don't really have to do background work so there's no need for me to do stuff like that. Once is enough.

2. I can drive through Brooklyn just fine. I drove though some convoluted parts & if I've got GPS or good directions, I'm just fine. I hadn't done it before & wasn't sure I could but seems all that driving in downtown Atlanta came in handy.

3. My artistic dedication tends to lead to me shooting myself in the foot. That whole perfectionist streak has trumped my personal comfort more than once. People need to watch me on that & reign it in if necessary.

4. I'm never going to be a full time actor. I do not have the dedication you need for it & my limits aren't going to change anytime soon. Those actors wearing bikinis in freezing cold weather are far better people than I am. You deserve respect for that & if you work w/me, I'll be making sure you get it as long as you don't piss me off.

I'm also never going to have representation, one of the hallmarks of a full time actor. Why not, you ask? It's hard to get it anyway but most people aren't professional advocates working in the industry like I am. I don't have the experience for higher ups to consider me & I don't think the lower rung people are going to be any better at it than me.

To me, getting some lower rung agent is like having someone w/a lower class grade than me do my homework. If I'm making an A in Geometry, why would I let someone who's making a C do my Geometry homework for me (presuming I'm not trying to sabotage myself)? That's just stupid. You'd have to convince me you were at least as good as me & I don't see that happening.

To me, it makes that representation search a total waste of time. I can just ask a trustworthy attorney friend to be a go-between instead of gambling on a total stranger.

Since actors need that stuff & I have limits, I don't think I'll ever be doing it full time unless I got to say "No" to things.

Think I'm wrong about representation as it pertains to me personally? Convince me why I should deal w/some lower rung person who doesn't have more knowledge than me, won't work as hard as me & doesn't have anything that I don't. Remember that I interned w/a very established talent agent in the past so I know the score here.

* Oh, and I did make an A in Geometry; I was one of only a few people taking it as a 9th grader & even had a few seniors in my class. My academic record was a main reason I never cheated; who would I get to cheat for me & do better than I could? No one.

If I get this other job clenched, I'll have even more reason not to consider some lower rung agent since I'll be making more industry contacts.

5. Never let an attorney get frostbitten or injured. The job market for the field is in the gutter, I'd sue & I've got six figure loan debt to repay. I can be creative & come up with a high damages figure.

This goes for any attorney, not just me. Some are 1,000 times worse in this kind of thing & do not have souls or a conscience.

Right now, I'm sick as a dog since I caught my husband's illness. Still had to go outside today, which sucked but at least I got my mailing done & the car started. Back to soothing a sore throat.

Monday, December 13, 2010

A Primal Scream Moment

Personally, I think we could all use these from time to time. As I've told people many times over the years, I feel it's better to call that slow driver a bitch in the privacy of your car than to pull out a gun and shoot innocent people in a bank one day b/c you've always repressed yourself.

When I'd say this to my mom, it actually had a reference point. Back in 2003, not long before I moved to Atlanta for college (the "big, bad city" in my mother's mind) there was a guy who did just that. If I remember correctly, he was a finance guy who just snapped one day.

Nice thing for your mother to hear before you move to a major city, right?

I believe that if you don't vent from time to time or have those cathartic moments, you do yourself and society a disservice.

This 24/7 existence of the working world and other things doesn't seem to account for that need for cathartic release. You see employees getting fired for ranting on places like Facebook, right? I seriously wonder why more employers haven't used technology to deal with employee issues; it's not like all of them have a conscience or care too much about public opinion. Look at Wal-Mart.

And speaking of those clueless idiots, they're trying to plant stakes into NYC yet AGAIN. Do these people ever get a clue that maybe a city known for powerful unions isn't going to be keen on an anti-union big box retailer being there? Personally, I say "Hell no!" to Wal-Mart. Good reasons for it.

1. Almost every Wal-Mart I've been to is filthy, has long lines & is filled with employees who are unhelpful as well as incompetent.

2. The utter violence & depravity of Wal-Mart. Who has forgotten about the guy who got trampled on Black Friday at the one in the scuzzier area of town? Great investigating there, Wal-Mart.

3. The shitty employee treatment. I actually have some personal knowledge of this one as I've known 2 different people who worked there & from what I heard, you'd get more compassion from Osama Bin Laden than the management at Wal-Mart. I call document review the lawyer equivalent of working for Wal-Mart w/good reason. In fact, I'd go so far as to say I'd rather be a prostitute than work at a Wal-Mart since at least I'd make more money doing that & face just as much degrading, abusive and scummy treatment. If I wanted no respect for schedule availabilities, I could work in health care & still make more money.

4. Finally, anything Bloomberg supports automatically makes me suspicious of the good it will do me. Considering he's tried to screw over the unions (including the one dealing w/my husband's job) & his attempts to turn NYC into a rich person's enclave, I just can't trust the guy.

But, getting back to that primal scream thing. I'm getting anxious and frustrated that I've had interest in my abilities to do a job that sounds interesting & like something I really want to do. Unfortunately, I've yet to hear the offer. I keep playing phone tag & never get the information out there.

This sort of thing irks me with my history of people acting like they were interested in hiring me for jobs & then being MIA, only to never have anything on the table. I've had many job success celebrations that were later false. After my personal experiences, I have a far harder time trusting anyone with a job offer. Talk is cheap, I need to see action.

The waiting bothers me because of this but it also bothers me if I get pinned into terms that I don't want. What if the offer is for something horrid and utterly ridiculous? Lawyers don't operate in the same realm as your average person but in particular, ones with my skill set are a rare breed. I know what is unfair to me & I've seen some people who do operate on planet Earth but plenty of others who do not.

For instance, telling me to go flip burgers would prove that you are stupid. I was overqualified for that after graduating high school so no chance in Hell any sane individual would have me doing that with a law license. They'd be too scared of me organizing the employees or encouraging people to assert themselves. This would have been a valid fear back when I was in high school considering I never tolerated that shit in my job at JcPenney; forget today, when I'm in an occupation known for enforcing people's rights in the face of adversity.

Telling me to go back to retail would also prove that you're stupid considering no sane person would hire someone w/7 years of experience & is a lawyer. I couldn't do it today since I would be way too blunt and tell off idiots. Leave your child? I'd immediately point out that you don't know who might be a predator or kidnapper & probably consider contacting child protective services on you for being a deadbeat parent. I think I could be a manager but most places demand you to have eons of experience for that & remember, my resume doesn't fit into a neat little box. I also refuse to work weekends for middling pay since I did more than enough of that in my retail career.

Now maybe these fears are unjustified but I've had too many disappointments & I haven't been called the real life Daria for no reason. Sometimes, it's still hard for me to believe I have a man in my life who loves me & would stand by me through any adversity I didn't inflict on myself. I still have vivid memories of being single & feeling like one guy would never make me happy. I also remember feeling like no one ever really understood me & how shocked I was to meet someone who did.

To make my day even better, I found out my cousin who's not too much older than me probably has cancer. She just learned that she's got a tumor in her abdomen that's been there for at least a year, is sizable & doctors are pretty certain is cancer. The odds aren't looking good for her & her sister who lives near by apparently hasn't even inquired about or visited her. If it was my sister, I'd be on the first flight to NC & making sure she got the best care possible. If anyone dared to skimp on her due to finances, I'd vow to make their life a living hell & get as pushy as possible to make sure she got fairness. Doctors also tend to be a little more deferential to lawyers in my experience. After all, who could locate a medical malpractice lawyer quicker? Not to mention we know legal talk & I did initially want to be a doctor, then a pharmacist before studying law.

My sister also pointed out to me that out of any kids in our family, we're the only ones with both parents still alive. I considered this & realized she's right. Not sure how I'd feel if either of my parents died. My mom is probably the heart & soul of my family, the glue holding it together, so that would be a huge loss for all concerned.

I'd likely mourn my dad less but not living in the same house w/him has helped mend that relationship a bit. He is at least a liberal voice in the conservative South & is just as assertive as anyone else in my family. Health wise, you'd expect him to go first but I think he'd just be the sort to defy medical science & live even longer than you think.

I'm sure reading this, you'd think "Wow, her family is messed up. No wonder she is the way she is." Probably true but you don't even know just how spot on you'd be in that determination, especially if you look at my dad's side. I suppose it certainly forms a basis for my creative abilities & how I draw influence. You can't live some normal, happy childhood & expect to be a great artist.

I remember my Art & Culture professor from college telling us that to be a great artist, you have to live life. He said you have to have some experiences, some hard times, so you'll have things to draw upon in your work. One of my high school teachers said something similar but not in the context of art. She said it in the context of not living with regrets later on.

Too many family members of mine seem to be dying lately. First my uncle, then my aunt & now my cousin's probably not well. Enough is enough! If more of my family's going to be dead, why not a distant relative who has some money that would go to me??? Not like I've been anyone's favorite or none of the relatives I know have money. I just wouldn't feel as bad about a distant relative I've never met or had a connection to. I'd feel like I do when some celebrity I never spoke to dies: I never knew the person so they could have been a total jerk in real life. I can't get people who mourn celebrities that probably would have been arrogant to them in a real life setting. If I were famous, I certainly wouldn't expect strangers to mourn me when they had no way of knowing if I was a good person or a total shithead.

AAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!! The whole job situation is making me slide into depression & family stuff is exacerbating it. I'd probably spend days in bed if I didn't have a cat that makes me get up.

Friday, December 10, 2010

General Musings Part 13

More stories, more stuff to comment on. Let's see if I can logically link these up.

First off, some hilarious articles on Cracked. Both relate to courtroom or police procedure. Damn movies!! (sarcasm)

I also agree that these are laughable lawsuits, though I'm completely shocked that neither the infamous hot coffee nor the "McDonalds made me fat" lawsuit made the list (why do all these famous cases of stupid involve McDonalds?).

I don't really think the judge suing the dry cleaner was so much laughable as proving a point. The thong one was just disturbing & one example of the many cringe inducing injuries people suffer in personal injury cases. Study this stuff in law school & you'll just be grossed out as well as terrified of doing ANYTHING since you'll end up with one of these creepy injuries.

You definitely shouldn't read medical malpractice cases or you'll be too terrified to ever have surgery.

I read this one on Yahoo & apparently one of these dealers wants to go to law school. I'll tell you this: if the character & fitness committee lets this jerk become a lawyer in NY or CT, they'd better hope I'm doing well enough to not notice or I'll be leading a charge to raise holy hell. You'll hassle poor people about finances but you're going to let drug dealers who was likely born to money in without a second look at the record (and were these kids even hurting for cash)??? That's a sign of hypocrisy & makes the whole "character & fitness exam" a joke.

Oh, and if indebted attorneys wanted sympathy for their cause to the general public, it might behoove them to act more like this guy. I'm completely shocked to see an attorney perform an altruistic act since that almost never happens, even among fellow attorneys. Honestly, I think the key to getting reform is getting a loudmouth figurehead who's media friendly as well as someone your average person can get behind such as the underdog or the (wo)man of the people who doesn't think (s)he is better than the rest b/c of being a lawyer & stands tough no matter what. Not some critical, bitchy type who dictates to people or whines about their lot in life (male or female, I see a lot of this going on & I can't have sympathy for someone like that). Could you respect someone who's worried more about what the other attorneys think of them than about doing what's right? If you're whining so much about the unfairness & then do nothing, I can't. You have to solve your own problems & make changes in your life. God helps those who help themselves, not whiners waiting for a sign from Heaven.

I highly agree that retailers shouldn't give stuff like this to celebrities. But bravo to you, Patton Oswalt for not being another greedy douchebag. Me, I wouldn't use this kind of thing so much since I have a sensitive stomach & care about my health; I'd rather share the wealth. Remember the Baskin Robbins discussion in "Supersize Me?" I do.

Oh, and this just irked me & made me grateful to work in my field. God forbid you have a personality, right? Suck all the fun out of a so-called "fun" event. No wonder people don't want to go to holiday parties at work. At least the one I went to before law school was black tie so I got to wear my white "Cinderella dress." Yes, I love dressing up. What of it? Any opportunity to do it & I will, especially if it makes me look different from the crowd. As I've said a hundred times before, I firmly believe one can dress tastefully without looking like a frumpy old hag or some robot in a business suit.

Going back to a work issue, I saw this topic on the Evil HR Lady blog. Religion at work: what a loaded issue.

I have to agree w/those who say that they don't mind talk of God + other spiritual entities or people's personal beliefs (you're also welcome to pray for me if you wish) but that when you try to convert, you are crossing the line.

I'm quite mindful of this kind of thing, especially because I lived in the South and some people are of the mind that if you aren't religious you just crawled up from Hell or need to be saved this instant. That can be the first question out of people's mouths & it's insensitive to my non-religious spouse.

I think we also need to be respectful of ALL people regardless of beliefs since conversion attempts are just as annoying as pestering women to have kids or telling someone what to eat.

I'm glad this guy got what was coming to him. Threaten me & I'll dare you to show up. Then my spouse will have organized a posse & it will kill you (that is, if I haven't first). Not to mention me threatening you with a lawsuit, collection agency or attacking you myself. I'm not a fair fighter, either. This is why I never understood kids at my school who'd start their fights in the hallway during break time or in the courtyard at lunch. Some teacher would be there in a second to break it up.

If you got in a fight with me, you'd be doing it when kids are in class. When some teacher isn't going to see it in 5 seconds. In other words, I don't play around so you'd better be taking it seriously & ready to go toe to toe. Just you, not your little buddies. I still take that view so if you challenge me, you'd better be ready to throw down. Hell, if this guy had ever crossed my path & tried that w/me I'd have probably cut his dick off or done something just as bad. Redheads don't play, you know?

Finally, I saw this story today & I find it interesting. If I was a manager or publicist, I'd really be pissed about the celebrity I worked with screwing me up with Twitter antics. You know those people probably still get the blame over stuff like that, right?

I can see both sides of the issue. On the one hand, I think it can improve a famous person's image to be accessible to the people & be more human. Humanization isn't necessarily a bad thing; sometimes it can help. On the other hand, if you're some loose cannon idiot who doesn't have privacy blockers and makes it a point to trash your studio, producer, whomever for no good reason then maybe you deserve what you get. Sometimes you're probably better off not showing the world that you really aren't worthy of its idolization. Granted, no one's going to get my idolization so it's a non-issue w/me. If your fortunes depend on the person, though, I can see where you might not want the celeb to have a Twitter account.

What do my industry folk think? Should celebrities use Twitter or lose it? My feeling is it depends.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Maybe It's Not Smart to Burn Bridges

While searching on Craig's List for job ads, I happened to look up something that led to Ripoff Report. Since I happened to be looking in the same category to browse through actual scams, I came across some very unflattering & downright defamatory remarks about a company I have an employment opportunity at.

Some tips before you write something on Ripoff Report:

1. Be damn sure you know the facts. I happen to know for a fact this particular company has not been casting anyone, hence not working w/any actors. If anyone's been taking money from "actors", I'm not aware of it.

2. Check your facts. In lots of states, you can look up attorneys online to see who is or isn't licensed. Some idiot had the nerve to claim about me "now she's an attorney." Listen up, jerkwad! I've been an attorney for 3 years, long before ever dealing w/the scam artist company a year ago.

3. Better watch pulling that "the same people are involved" shit to prove your argument. For one thing, the CEO being out of a company is a huge change. Another funny fact: one of the PR reps at this company was also part of this contingent of actors.

4. Finally, as I've said before if you are concerned about being yelled at, get the hell out of the entertainment field. I've seen & heard about far worse things including the casting couch. This business is not for shrieking violets, delicate flowers or those with a special snowflake mentality. See how many friends you keep if you get oversensitive. I'm fine with the occasional "babe" or "sweetheart"; this is part of some people's interactions based on generation/region/what have you. Make a federal case of things like this & I promise you'll get blackballed sooner or later.

Arrested Development also proves that executives curse a LOT.

Better yet, maybe you should live in a bubble all by yourself since you're not going to be able to handle working anyplace w/that kind of attitude. Try mouthing off to a supervisor sometime & see what happens. Even the McDonald's night manager isn't going to stand for it.

As an aside, I actually warned certain actors involved who behaved professionally & who I felt had a future. Clearly, the authors are sad little wannabes who will not amount to anything; they can't call themselves "actors" since real actors would have facts and evidence to back up their tales. If I were involved in this little scam, why would I go telling investors & defrauded people anything? Why would my boss at this other company do it if he were involved?

If you didn't get the warning, maybe it means you don't belong to the creative community & no one wants to vouch for you in future projects.

Not that I feel some compelling need to defend myself or anything but I think my boss there could have a libel action w/some of these remarks.

This is how you burn bridges, kids. You'll also not find a thing on the BBB or in court records since that company has not done anything warranting legal action. If it has, that's news to me & you really should speak up while bringing in your evidence.

Furthermore, I have a very good memory & know precisely who I did or didn't interact with. The names of the troublemakers are permanently etched in my brain so they won't be crossing my desk or dealing with me.

God, this reminds me of something that happened to an industry friend of mine. My friend was the target of a very dedicated hater in a foreign country. This hater dislikes my friend so much that he created a hate site exclusively for that purpose. He probed details of my friend's life & went right for this friend's jugular.

My friend was upset at first but eventually took it with a grain of salt. Guess I should feel like I've arrived in a sense since I've got haters & those haters have zero credibility in this business. I certainly won't change who I am to impress some future (maybe present, for all I know) whore. Thoughts?

Monday, December 6, 2010

Doug Funnie is Crazy and Other Realizations

While looking for some images of Judy Funnie, I stumbled across this blog.  I'm seriously thinking of following it b/c not only is it hilarious but when you think about it, these logic fails are quite accurate.  That show did make me want to rip my hair out sometimes w/some of those logic fails. My husband describes Doug as emo & he hates people who are emo.

For those who are clueless, Judy Funnie:

I think I could pull off that look if I somehow figure out what to do with my hair.  Recently, I found it was getting pretty close to my waist.  When I was little I wanted my hair to be waist length like my best friend's but it never happened.

So, going back to earlier discussed topics I found this charming story a few days ago.  If I were Josh Duhamel, I'd have been more pissed about the TSA body scans or the enhanced pat down of my junk than at having to turn off my Blackberry.  He's lucky none of those delayed passengers formed a posse and beat his ass; do that if I have to travel & you won't get to the "taunting" me stage.  I'll just take your Blackberry & smash it into pieces or drop it into a toilet.  Whatever's handy at the time. 

Life lesson: never, EVER mess with a natural redhead.  Least of all, a natural redhead who's an attorney + has rage issues.  Actually, all natural redheads have rage issues so be mindful of that.

Oh, and this just horrifies me on many levels.  I actually agree w/Sarah Palin on this one, if you can believe it.

First off, if you want to deal with obesity issues how about improving the school food?  Didn't anyone see the film Supersize Me?  Remember when Morgan Spurlock went to the school for troubled kids where they had healthy cuisine at the same prices & the kids actually focused in classes?  Did any other schools actually do that or is this just some more nonsense to detract from the government corruption that continues to exist?

Second, how about more physical activity?  Better and more gym classes would certainly tackle the obesity issue, right?  Kids would be motivated to participate if they weren't tormented for being bad at some sport or had playgrounds to use at recess.  How about a daily recess like I had as a kid where you didn't have to do class sports activities?

A regulation like this is just a distraction from real solutions and an attempt to make things harder on the organizations trying to raise money.  What's next? Barring Girl Scout cookies from being sold on the premises?  An actual food police? 

What about the skinny people?  I was also skinny as a child & a no-fat diet would have caused me to lose weight, meaning forced confinement in an eating disorder clinic b/c everyone would claim I was anorexic.  Some of us do have that gene naturally; helps if you want to work in entertainment, doesn't it?

So, speaking of the police The Consumerist has some wild stories about ordinary people being confronted by the police or having to use the police to safeguard against the retail Gestapo.

A few words about these stories:

First off, why is any police officer working to enforce nonsensical store policies that are not legally enforceable under the law?  What cop is dumb enough to do Best Buy's bidding by following some shopper out into the parking lot and threatening arrest for not showing the non-existent door checker his receipt?  Do you not have any real criminals to catch?  There aren't ANY murders, robbers, child molesters, deadbeat parents, illegal aliens or even errant speeders to investigate in your entire town?  Why are we playing Best Buy's rent-a-cop & why wouldn't an officer of the law be insulted about doing such a shady task?  You can bet these company executives don't respect them or the law.

This was a sheriff's deputy, for God's sake.  I know sheriff's deputies have better things to do than this.

Had you done this to me, I would have asked you to escort me into the Best Buy so I could instantly return the items & not maim anyone in the process since I'd be sorely tempted to do it if you weren't present.  I figure if I end up in certain life situations, it will be best for all involved if a cop is around to escort me so I don't murder people with my bare hands.  This goes back to what I said before about not messing w/natural redheads.

Second, no one being around me would motivate me to not stand up for my rights.  I'd tell my spouse to go get bail money b/c I'd just tell the officer point blank to go right ahead and arrest me since I'm not ceding to some corporation's false authority over my person, property or rights.

Third, why is it that only men seem to be involved in these stories?  You never hear about these things happening to women.  You certainly don't hear about this happening to attorneys. 

I'd love to see the look on some of these people's faces if they ever dared to try that w/me & I pointed out my being an attorney in my home state + started quoting the correct law at them. 

I happen to know the law when it comes to false imprisonment, paying tips (not required in NY state), assault and battery considering I have a law degree.  Love when non-attorneys try to fancy themselves as constitutional law experts, especially when it's simpletons who use that logic to try to encourage their fellow citizens to behave like sheep, let the cop perform an illegal strip search and not object to the demands to perform sexual favors.  Don't fall for it.

Better yet, let's make those "citizens" leave the US and trade them for illegals from elsewhere who are acting more like proper American citizens (knowing English, not breaking any laws, performing honest work, etc.).

One time being from the South helps: I can be matter of fact but very polite about it.  I do dare any Wal-Mart employee to try a thing with me.  I've heard numerous stories about things & you bet I'd say "armed robbery" plus inform any police officers that I wanted to prosecute to the fullest extent of the law.

I once had a hassle over trying to return pantyhose in my local Wal-Mart as a law student.  This guy tried to argue w/me about opening a package when I had to try them on to assess whether they fit me or not.  I went Angry White Girl & guess what?  Got my return taken care of.  Having worked in retail, I know for a fact that being a squeaky wheel will usually get you the desired results.  I simply don't employ that tactic unless someone is just being stupid or trying to be unfair to me; that doesn't fly with me.

So if you as a non-lawyer get in such situations?  Know a good attorney & make a big stink. 

Friday, December 3, 2010

More Reasons for Me to Abhor Bar Associations

Here's a great example of why the general advice of "go to bar association events" is a shitty thing to say.

I get e-mails for holiday parties at 2 bar associations I belong to. Nice holiday party; sounds like fun, right? They also typically have annual dinners & so forth. In fact, one person w/the membership at one of them tried to talk me & one my attorney friends into going.

Here's the problem: these events cost a fortune to attend. These annual dinners are over $100 a ticket and even the one for Queens County was about $50 a ticket. Just going to these holiday parties? They're $25 per ticket. Per fucking ticket!!!

Now it may not be the fault of the committee heads. Apparently, one of these associations does charge money to them to have food there. Not sure if anyone's ever considered the option of buying your own food with the organization's funds or getting reimbursement from the association so you're not paying the food serving staff. That's how everyone I knew did things. My sorority used dues in the treasury to pay for events & had a budget. We didn't have a sub-category of the membership who was excluded due to poverty.

Do these associations charge you for the venue?? If they do, I'd be the type of committee head to go find my own venue elsewhere & not get dicked around by the greedy associations who clearly don't live in the real world where countless new attorneys are unemployed. As in, no money to pay student loans & basic expenses.

They've apparently not even read recent issues of the ABA magazine which featured how unemployed new attorneys are dealing with the recession. Some of them are living at home & working unpaid or for anemic wages.

The cost of these so-called "yearly" bar events that are supposed to be open pisses me off. To me, it feels like I'm excluded from an association where I'm paying dues & allegedly someone who matters there. Being charged $25 & certainly being charged $100 to go to things makes me feel like I don't count. There's no option for a reduced rate or even a younger attorney discount.

The same thing happened when I was in law school. They had a yearly Barrister's Ball, which I'd have liked to go to. One year, they did at least come to their senses & charge a reasonable price for law student tickets. The problem was they didn't consider that law students might have a date that is going to school elsewhere they might want to bring. The regular ticket price was absurd for my husband, at the time a library school student. Sorry, you're not motivating me to go anywhere when my boyfriend's ticket is over $100 & he's paying the same price as some old BigFirm law partner.

Things like that make me feel completely unwelcome & say to me "I'm an elitist asshole."

I have to wonder how many younger attorneys even show up to these things. If you do, you're obviously a dupe with more money than common sense. I went to a nice holiday party at the law firm I worked at before law school. No one charged me admission or made my date pay a fortune for tickets. I even got compliments on this awesome evening gown I have; officially, it's my "Cinderella dress."

I may just say something to the person with that event as that association is supposed to be a bit more grounded in the real world that the other one, which isn't. Thank God that at least the Entertainment Committee president does understand the real world & told me not to let finances stop me from coming to events. Bless her heart; if people like that were handling policy in these groups, you might get more of the anti types in there.

* And of course, don't forget about the "Your Turn to Rant" contest. The deadline is January 3rd. *

Thursday, December 2, 2010

An Ad Telling it Like it Is

If you read my post a few days ago on ghostwriters & plagiarists, you already know my stance on this issue. Whoever posted this is my hero:

To all the students who want someone to write their papers
Date: 2010-12-02, 5:53PM EST
Reply to: see below

When did the writing/editing section become a place for lazy students to find other people to do their homework? If you don't want to learn anything, stop taking up space that could go to people who actually value an education. We already attended school. We finished our homework. We're professionals who are looking for real jobs. Get off your lazy asses and do your assignments. I sometimes have the urge to respond to your ads -- just to collect enough information to pass along to your professors and school administration. Then you can flunk out, relax and be as stupid and lazy as you want to be, indefinitely.

* it's NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests
* Compensation: no pay

PostingID: 2091818624

I've responded to some of these culprits & threatened to report them to their school administrators & deans. Not to mention saying that they'd better not be trying to join the legal field since this kind of thing is a HUGE ethics violation that no state Character & Fitness committee would let you get away with. Oh, and do these schools not have allow you to get extensions on time???

Doing it also proves you're a moron who doesn't have the necessary skills to represent a client. It'd be like getting a driver's license when someone else did the driving part; you'd be a danger to everyone on the road.

I sure don't want a surgeon operating on me who cheated his way through med school, do you?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A Lawyer After My Own Heart & Why No Mentoring for Entertainment Lawyers?

Gary Fielder, a lawyer in Colorado, is awesome. Here's why.

This is precisely why lawyers are useful & exactly what I'd do if I were forced to travel for business. I don't care if this guy's seeking money or not, I stand 100% behind the principle of the lawsuit & feel that being demanded to pay an $11,000 fine for not submitting to this invasive bullshit instead of simply getting to leave the airport is unconscionable. Try the shit I've read about with me; you'll be dragging my butt to prison in a very noisy scene & will never see a dime from me since like most people w/six figure loan debt, I'd likely be declared judgment proof.

Let's hope the judge has some common sense & shuts down the government's attempt through the TSA to take away people's freedom. You're never going to be 100% safe & if you're willing to submit to this, I suggest you move to another country where you don't have constitutional rights. You know strip & cavity searches won't be far behind.

Until you politicians, celebrities, flight crews & others currently exempt are going through this, I suggest you put up or shut up. Statements from the likes of you confirm why I hate politics & people who don't have a clue trying to tell others who do how to live.

This Craig's List ad has been posted for a second time & pisses me off:

█►Seeking lawyers from top firms to mentor JD grads - $40-$60 an hr (New York)
Date: 2010-12-01, 2:04PM EST
Reply to: [Errors when replying to ads?]

Mentor young, ambitious law school graduates and help them make the most effective use of their law degrees.

Blue Chip Career has established a platform that will allow you to enjoyably and effectively help law school graduates with their careers. The career counseling sessions are done over the phone, according to your convenience.

There will be a modest hourly payment ($40-$60 an hour) provided to mentors.


-We are seeking professionals that have excelled in their respective field and are passionate about mentoring.
-Must have a JD and 8+ years of experience.
-We are looking for lawyers with experience at top law firms, as well as professionals that have pursued other careers (finance, government relations/public policy, business/general management, non-profit, and many more!)

If interested, please send your resume and a paragraph detailing your passion for mentoring to

* Location: New York
* Compensation: $40-$60 an hour
* Telecommuting is ok.
* This is a part-time job.
* This is a contract job.
* Principals only. Recruiters, please don't contact this job poster.
* Please, no phone calls about this job!
* Please do not contact job poster about other services, products or commercial interests.

PostingID: 2089495488

Why does it piss me off? First off, what about the entertainment field? Tons of attorneys want to do that & true mentors in that category are few & far between. I can confirm both from personal experience. I really haven't found attorneys doing what I get to do; most would have told me to go work in BigLaw, where I'd have been miserable.

Second, you don't need 8+ years of experience in the entertainment field to be an effective mentor. My Entertainment Law professor, who worked in the industry, said that the industry promotes more quickly than your typical job. You learn more in a quicker time period & sure as hell don't need a BigLaw pedigree or Ivy League law school degree to get in. I & others I know are living proof of that. In fact, I think you're better off having a decent personality & being from that background tends to make you an irritating elitist asshole.

Sadly if you're the last T1 graduate + BigLaw refugee who hasn't lost his/her soul, then you're having to work against that stereotype to get anywhere. As a creative person, you'd have a long way to go to prove you had my best interests at heart.

I also think having that much experience makes you too distant from the realities of today's job market & economy. You got your start in the flush times & your tips aren't as useful as those from people who are living it firsthand. Now some people aren't clueless ideologues & do have better tips than "make good grades" but that seems to be the exception instead of the rule.

Do I think I'm an exception to this 8 year experience crap? You're damn skippy I do! There are people with more experience who wish they were doing what I get to & had the regard I've got in my area. Not to mention I've had life experiences that most people don't have for a very long time such as death of close family members, living in a lower income level & having to be self-reliant at a young age. That means I'm not regarded as some spoiled Millenial with helicopter parents & zero accountability for anything (those people piss me off too since I didn't live that).

Maybe I ought to do this in the future. I'm big on helping others avoid things I went through & I'll bet you many of these attorneys are clueless when it comes to scam artistry. Problem is, I don't like the attorney stereotype crowd since I behave like a grown up & not a 7th grader clique snob trying to impress the Queen Bee. Arrogance with me is asking for trouble.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The "Your Turn To Rant" Contest

Got a burning issue that you've just been dying to get off your chest? Maybe you disagree w/one of my views or feel you should cover something I haven't.

Well, now it's your turn to rant.

Send me your best rant on a current event you've personally experienced (as in you or a loved one). It can be on anything from politics to immigration to those pesky kids who won't stop playing on your lawn. Yes, you can disagree w/me!!

The winning rant will get published here & the lucky author will win 4 free tickets to Miss Abigail's Guide to Dating, Mating & Marriage (a $300 value).

If the winner can't get to the show in NYC, then we'll see what we can do.

Contest Rules:

1. You only have to write one rant. If you start following the blog or link to this, you can submit a second entry. You'll have to prove you're doing this, though.

2. No more than 2 authors per rant.

3. Rants must be at least 100 words and no more than 5,000 words. Yes, I'll be counting the words.

4. You must present logical reasoning to support your rant. If it's all “the Bible/Koran/other holy book says this,” I'm not going to bother reading it. Nor do I care what your grandmother, Jesus or George W. Bush have to say; this is YOUR rant. Convince me that I should agree with your views.

5. Keeping w/the above, this isn't a law review article or research paper. Putting me to sleep will not increase your chances of winning.

6. No hate speech, religious sermons or content that would violate Blogger's “Terms and Conditions” or those of other websites. If there's going to be any cult recruitment efforts here, it's going to be from me damn it!

7. Proper English: spelling errors will be corrected but no “leek” or text message speak. If I can't understand it, you can't be considered.

8. Your rant can be posted anonymously but you can't be anonymous in submitting it. I have to be able to get in touch w/you if you want to win.

9. I reserve the right to edit your post for conciseness. If you don't like it, start your own blog & post your rant there.

10. No personal attacks. I will not publish your manifesto against Jenny Smith unless you agree to change the name.

11. No recounts & no whining if you aren't selected.

Rants will be judged by moi & her trusted team on originality, humor, persuasive ability and accessibility to the general public. You can disagree w/my views but you'll need a good argument to back it up & should prepare for me to debate you on it.

The contest ends on January 3, 2011. That should give you a nice post-holiday treat.

How to enter? Simply post a comment to this entry; I won't publish them & will review them for the contest. If you post a comment to a different entry, I may not see the entry so make it easier on yourself okay?

So, on with the rants!!