Thursday, January 14, 2010

It's easier than it looks...

The dull pain and numb feeling of regret that I awoke to a mere few hours ago has dissipated into a malaise that has me confined to the couch. I hate the fucking holidays and the goddamn music and the pretending and the “no, after you's." Are you fucking kidding me? I did two weeks in the cold, in the rain and the lack of sunlight. I did a two week bid in the east, I love the east…but don’t get it twisted, the call it the illadelph for a reason. That “Pain” was the residue of 5 relationships, way too much crying and nearly endless consumption of Guinness, well…that is until everyone started running out of it…but I digress.
I distinctly remember what it felt like when I walked out of the terminal @ LAX. It was so fucking warm…had to be 70 degrees…oh, that’s right! I live in LA! The baggage terminal was straight drama, and no I’m not embellishing. Had to be like 300 motherfuckers in the United terminal shovin’, pushin’, rappin’ on the cell-piece. Ha…yeah. LA Bitches!

As I leaned up against the wall waitin’ for my bag to arrive I wondered how the fuck I was gonna beat all these chumps outta here? About 30 years later my bags showed up, and one was ripped (that’s just unprofessional) …whatever.. I can bounce.
I get outside and it’s like a scene from the Road Warrior…not good. Next thing I knew this Persian cat is like… “You need a ride my friend”

As a matter of fact I do

Where you headed?

Downtown…straight shot up the 105


That works.

…and just like that I had a ride outta there. Two minutes later I’m in the back of a Lincoln Towncar with crazy tinted windows sipping on free bottled water. Amir’s totally outta control…he’s speedin’ like there’s numbers on the side of his car…lemme say it again, it’s good to be in LA. I’m quite sure that at any moment his going to pitch me on a strip club or a massage parlor…I can feel it. But no, he doesn’t.

He keeps it friendly and courteous.

When I was back east I had my last fight with my Blackcherry…and I switched phones. No, not and I phone.. I do not like the taste of Steve Jobs’ balls in my mouth…plus I need keys.. (I’m a texter baby) …so I went with the G1.

I’ve got a dancing android and J Dilla as a ringtone, what’s to complain about?

Anyways… my G1 was blowin’ up in the Limo. Text, email, another text, two more emails…mmm, the game never rests. Amir’s celli rings and he’s on the call, there’s talk of lap dances and two-for-ones and I’m thinking that this party is about to get real interesting. Vibrate-vibrate, more incoming data and once again I’m distracted. What I love about being a filmmaker is how quickly things change. One email, one text message one phone call later everything is different. This is why I firmly believe that no matter how badly you fuck up, you’re still in the game – ‘cause the game don’t sleep.

We get back to my spot and the money exchange is quick efficient and next thing you know I’m free to go. As I prepare to step out of the limo, I stop and shoot Amir a glance in the rearview mirror.

How come you didn’t pitch me? I was down for some strippers,
for some badgirls.

You’re too tired my friend…they would only take your money.

…now that right there, is the way it outta be. I threw him another $10 and he dapped me thank you as he handed me his card.

(heavy accent) Holler at your boy when you wanna make it rain.

And just like that he was gone…and I was back at the spot. I’m loft living downtown nowadays which is a pretty cool gig. It still mostly $2 hookers and alcoholics and random thuggery…so I’m blendin’ right in. I made the decision to move to someplace industrial so my Yellow 280Z “Sourpuss” was a lot less conspicuous. You can keep the beach and the mountains, I’ll take the square footage.

Ok.. time to fess up a little. I wasn’t just being a baby and not writing. I was being productive. I got a new script, a TV show concept, I’m still shopping SLZ and I’ve got this book I want to publish. Don’t get me wrong I’m still the same “fuck you-pay me” dude I’ve always been (that’s an awesome short film BTW ) I’m just going about things a little differently.

And I have Bernard Madoff to thank. Well, not exactly…I’ve never had contact with the man or his scheme, it’s the idea I’m talking about. I know, you’re not following, forgive me…just took a mooooooonnnnsteeeeer hit and things aren’t exactly clear, so bear with me. Ok, how is it that conmen can convince people to part with millions of dollars and yet we, the sincere filmmakers, struggle to get production funds? So the idea became: what if I acted like a conman? What if I came at this whole production funds chase as a con-game, what if I took the uniqueness of my life and just ran with it; what would happen?

That is the plan I am now undertaking. If I wanted to con people into a fake film scam the first thing I would need to do is legitimize myself as a filmmaker by either hacking websites at add my name to the field of entries and create a host of identities at filmmaking websites so that if one were to go looking for this filmmaker named Cooprdog. (Wait a minute!...I already got that)

I need business cards…new ones, …slick ones. Ones that will impress. (um… I got that)

I need a funny outgoing message. (I got that)

I would need a cool place to live and an iconic car to drive (got a loft and Sourpuss I’m 2-for2) and I need to appear at filmmaking events and producer hangouts and make myself well known…or, as I have said since day one of this..requiem (too dramatic?) that the best thing you can do to get your shit started in this industry is to go out to film events (meet-n-greets, screenings) and be seen.

Ok so, my plan doesn’t sound that crazy, now does it?

But I know what you’re thinking, just valet-ing a cool car at a “film spot” isn’t really going to do a lot for you because this is a town of poseurs. Well, I got that covered. The best way for people to think you’re busy, is to always be busy. Ok, how do we do that? Well, we increase the amount of data coming to our phone – for example:

How to make yourself look busy when trying to impress:

1) Get on Craigslist.
Write three funny but somewhat provocative personal ads and run them the day before you are going to go out. Then two hours before you go out answer about 20 personal ads… the crazier the better. If you’re a half-way decent writer you should be able to keep you phone busy with incoming emails for the next six hours…all you have to do then is make faces (and you will) when you read the responses (cause you won’t have any idea who’d responding to which ad) that will make you seem interesting.

2) Send a flirty text or ambiguous email to all your recent ex’s
(it really pays to have shitty relationships…you can leverage them). Now I wouldn’t just start beggin’ for sex or calling someone a slut (not that I’ve ever done that) cause you’re just going to wind up fucking someone who you told yourself you can’t fuck anymore…therefore just say hello, or “I was thinking about you” or “I just drove by your favorite coffee shop”. The idea is to get a response, and it will be delayed because of the issues in your “relationship”. By the time that data comes back, you’ll seem like the most in demand writer in this town.

3) Learn how to order. Ok, how can I explain this – alcoholics are really good at ordering drinks; you need to be able to order yourself a drink in a manner that makes your fellow patrons laugh or nod in agreement. For example I’m a Guinness drinker but I never ask for Guinness I always say “what’s the darkest beer you have”…right there I’m special because I’m demonstrating some beer knowledge. If she says Guinness I go “see.. I was afraid to ask” …then I’ll get a few chuckles from the people standing next to me, I’m half way to being the life of the party. But say you drink liquor..say you’re a Gin and Tonic person. Well don’t order a Gin and Tonic…have some familiarity…Sapphire and tonic please. Shows you know a little somethin’ about Gin and you take your drinking seriously…not a bad thing to be when you’re looking for money.

4) It’s all about your first drink order.
What I mean by this is that by the time you’ve received your first drink you need to have established yourself (the drink order really helps this). To do this effectively you need to do three things.

A) Make rhetorical comments about the wait time for a drink…
“this is the line for alcoholics, right?” And don’t worry about being funny, what you are trying to do is create some presence for yourself. If a chick smiles at my comment I’ll follow it up with “she knows what I’m talkin’ about”…she will most likely laugh or smile…cause now you are the funny guy.

B) Work the bartender. Yes you need a drink, but you really want intel from him. First of all you want to open a tab, that means better service cause the overall drink total will be higher. Don’t get the well liquor – I know, I know drinks in LA are expensive…but you can’t afford a DUI anyway so it’s not like you’re going to knock back enough of them to have a crazy bar tab, and the bartender now will remember you , cause you’re drinking the good shit.

C) Work the wait staff.
As soon as the bartender turns away you need to find a waitress or bar back to talk to. Not because you want info, but because you need to make a connection with someone that you know you can find later. Be nice, say hello – they will appreciate it, and 90 min’s later when you need to appear busy you can go and talk to them, they’ll appreciate the company.

5) Talk to people that you are not attracted to
and try to find out where they are from and what they do in about 4 minutes. LA people are arrogant and love to talk about themselves, but it looks like you’re talkin’ shop and makin’ deals – more importantly it’s someone to say hello to in passing later on.

6) Work the cocktail waitresses.
OK, this is a complicated move but I think you can handle it. If you really wanna get shit cracklin’…pay cash for your first round. Roam around a little bit and then flag down a cocktail waitress (preferably one you want to hit on) and flirt as you place your drink order. What you want out of this relationship is to get her to tell you who’s in the film industry and what the situation is like over by them. Again, if you don’t try to put a dick in her mouth and talk to her like a co-conspirator she’ll be more than willing to help…and she might go home with you (but I’m not making promises)

7) Practice making your approach.
The best way to do this is to find a random person and make them your Mark. Watch them to see what they are drinking, if they are alone and if they are somewhat intoxicated and then make your approach. Strike up a phony conversation and see how long you can keep it going. Don’t talk about what you do, keep the conversation limited to the level of bar service or the roundness of some random chick’s ass. If you get this down, you can approach anyone.

8) It’s all about the sexy girls.
The chicks that accompany these film dudes are there for a reason they know it, the Mark knows it and you should know it. Don’t pretend not to be attracted to her and don’t be unwilling to exchange quick glances. You don’t wan’t to flirt with her as much as you want to acknowledge that you are aware that you are being checked out; the hot chick allows the money guy to size you up on approach (since you’ll be distracted) need to notice her but keep your distance, the money guy will think you have respect for power, or are on his jock…either way, he’ll start talking.

From then on you should be in…if you are not then you’ll have to wait for lesson two…which I’ve yet to write so… I guess you’re fucked :-0 This is my approach for 2010, but I’m doing more than just acting crazy in a bar. I’m going to attend writers conferences, be more visible and see that I can get my name and my email well know in the first quarter. That’s the plan anyway.

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