David, Tanja, and Nathan kick things off with the ceremonial cutting of the ice cream cake
David, Tanja, and Nathan kick things off with the ceremonial cutting of the ice cream cake
Tanja digs in
Tanja digs in
Carl's ice cream headache
Carl's ice cream headache

Since our dance cards have finally opened up, Paul and I can now look forward to several rounds of industry meet-and-greets, those ubiquitous sit-downs with studio and network execs so crucial to future employment. We’ll head down to L.A. and spend a week making the acquaintance of players big and small, sometimes pitching projects, sometimes taking pitches, mostly sitting in an office or conference room discussing where to find the best eats in town. One would assume these types of get-togethers would be big dog and pony shows but, in truth, by the time you’re sitting down, all of the legwork has already been done by your agent. He’s already told them all about you (your many years of experience, your strong working relationship with past studios and networks, your incredible telekinetic abilities) so all you really need to do is show up and demonstrate you are not: a) a drunk, b) an addict, c) crazy, or d) likely to burst into tears at the slightest provocation. If you can pull that off, then you’re halfway to landing your next gig.

Again, since your agent has already filled them in on what a , you’re not really there to talk about yourself. Rather they’re the ones who will talk about you. You, on the other hand, will talk about them. A typical conversation will go something like this:

THEM: So, I understand you just got off Visigoth P.I. [note: They’ll usually only talk about your last show in general terms because it’s unlikely they’ll have ever heard of it, much less watched an actual episode].

YOU: Yeah. It was a great five years [note: Whether true or not, you want to convey a positive attitude. No one wants to work with a chronic complainer. Although, given the realities of television production, sooner or later, they invariably will.] and now I finally have the opportunity to pursue some other projects [a.k.a. “Please buy my spec script about the talking baboon who gets sent back in time and helps Oliver Cromwell establish the Commonwealth of England.”]

THEM: I’m glad you were able to find the time to meet with us [note: What they’re actually saying is “Consider yourself fortunate we made time to meet with you. This is your cue to start talking about us.”]

YOU: Well, I really enjoyed the last movie you guys produced. I was shocked Aston didn’t get a best actor nomination. [note: usually untrue. Alternately, if you don’t feel like lying, you can go with:] / Congratulations on the success of Sweat Shop: The Musical. You must be very pleased [a.k.a. “You must be very pleased given that you no doubt assumed it would crash and burn like Jason Statham’s King Lear.”].

THEM: Thank you. [a.k.a. “That’s it. Kiss the ring, you lowly worm!”]

YOU: I’d love the opportunity to work with you because I really admire your accomplishments. [a.k.a. “From all indications, your checks clear on a regular basis.”]

THEM: And we’d love to work with you too [a.k.a. “You’ll never hear form us again.]. It was really nice meeting you. [a.k.a. “Get out of my office.].

More or less.

Yesterday, Paul and I had a meeting with a local production company. Their offices are located in one of the city’s most unsavory neighborhood and, as I backed into a spot, I considered whether I really wanted to waste the two dollars on the parking meter considering my car would, in all likelihood, be gone by the time I got back. My cell phone rang. It was Paul. “Where am I going?” I told him the address and, as I walked up the street, I spotted him winding a circuitous path through the legion of vagrants, alcoholics, druggies, and street punks. We met up in front of the place, a blink-and-you-miss-it reinforced door on what I’d taken to be a condemned building. “Geez,”muttered Paul, casting a glance back at the local flavor. “I feel like I’m in an episode of The Wire.”

I buzzed. “Hello?”came a disembodied voice. I explained who we were and what we were doing loitering outside his building (Uh, Joe and Paul. We’re here for a meeting?). There was a suspenseful pause as though the guy on the other end of the intercom was weighing the truthfulness of my statement. Then – buzz, click. We were in.

As far as meet and greets go, this one went well. We met with some very nice people, discussed one of their upcoming projects (a big screen feature that, while incredibly challenging, has the potential to be a lot of fun), then wrapped up in plenty of time for lunch. Paul headed back to his car and I headed back to mine – or, more to the point, where I thought I’d parked. Between my terrible memory and my horrible sense of direction, I ended up wandering aimlessly through what one of my fellow writer’s refers to as “Cracktown”. Fortunately, I didn’t stand out too much in my suit, dress shoes, and scorpion cufflinks and, eventually, located my car that was just as I’d left it – undamaged and unstolen.

I look forward to the upcoming L.A. leg of our meet and greet tour. At least there we won’t have to worry about braving any sketchy neighborhoods.

Today was the last day for our front office trio of Tanja, Nathan, and David so, to commemorate the occasions and their many years of hard work on the show, I went to Dairy Queen and picked them up an ice cream cake. Check out the festivities. Aren’t you sorry you missed out?

Okay, I have more than enough questions for Brad. Starting today, I’d like to start collecting questions for Stargate: Atlantis Costume Designer Val Halverson. Tomorrow, actor Tyler McClendon drops by for his hotly-anticipated Q&A.

78 thoughts on “October 8, 2008: Meet-and-Greets, Bad Neighborhoods, and Ice Cream Cake

  1. Wow… sounds like finding a job as a TV writer is a bit more difficult than I imagined it would be (I was thinking it would be more like “I just finished doing THAT so hire me, mmkay?”). So are you and Paul gonna stay together? Do you have the same agent? Good luck in LA!!!

    I hope Brad doesn’t get put off that there’s so many questions!!! I hope he answers them ALL!!!

    Questions for Val:

    *What is, in your opinion, the most difficult costume you have been asked to design?

    *How about the weirdest one?

    *What is your favorite part of working on Stargate: Atlantis?

    *How much of the final costume design comes from you, and how much is given to you (by the writers, canon, et cetera…)?

  2. iceeeeeeeeeeecream cake!!!!!!

    LOL at the aka meanings.. great read xx

  3. Bye, bye, Tanja, David and Nathan,
    You will be missed! Do let us know where you land!

    So Joe,
    I guess by today’s entry that our humble bid to try and get Brad Wright to change his mind and bring back SGA for a 6th season is not working! Dam it to hell!

    I also guess that we don’t need his answers to our Q&A after all!


  4. See, that was what I was talking about yesterday regarding the way that Glen Cook answered the questions; direct, straight, honest.

    In the case of your above example, and it was a scarily accurate representation of any boardroom meeting, both parties knew the conversation a load of dog turd, but alas, we all still go along with it.

    Joe wrote:

    THEM: Thank you. [a.k.a. “That’s it. Kiss the ring, you lowly worm!”]

    JOE: [Mental thought] I really hope they don’t read my blog after I write up what I really think of these people.

    I work in an industry that thrives on talking cr@p. The IT industry promotes this, otherwise the world would learn our dastardly secret that computers aren’t really that complicated if we just used easy to understand terms and we’d all be out of a job. So generally the first time you meet a new supplier or new head of IT at a client it is a fest of speaking absolute and utter nonsense.

    THEM: “So your experience in HTML, XML and Java appears extensive. I notice a lot of work with SQL and Oracle. Have you implemented outside of MS environments such as Linux? Does your software integrate with Exchange as well as POP and SMTP? Does it use SOAP? You specialise in CRM and SFA, do you also support ITIL and ITSM systems?”

    See, there is just so much material for poking fun at in that conversation. But instead, I have to be all serious, join the guys pi$%ing competition and speak a lot of crap back. Thus describes my daily life.

    Here is a small excerpt from a software Help File to give you an idea:
    “Use Cube Designer in Business Intelligence Development Studio to edit various properties of an existing cube, including the measure groups and measures, cube dimensions and dimension relationships, calculations, key performance indicators (KPIs), actions, partitions, perspectives, and translations included in the cube, as well as to browse the data contained by the cube.”

    See what I mean?

    Sorry Joe, I think that was me venting. You started it!
    Good luck with LA!

  5. hey, joe, welcome to my neck of the woods! 😀

    but don’t blame me for whatever does or doesn’t happen to you… 😯

    this is kind of a bumpy question, but with the united states economy being what it is, do you think it’ll effect canada’s too? i think what i’m trying to ask is will the stargate franchise be in trouble with the economy being in trouble?

    sally =)

  6. Thanks for telling us your grand story about your day in the seedier parts of Vancouver. 😀

    I’ve been amused on how the posts on the questions for Brad entry keep rising steadily. I imagine he had to know that he’d be causing quite a stir by wanting to answer our questions. If he did not, then he must live in the dark ages. I think there were some excellent questions asked about SGU and SGA. I’m very much looking forward to see how he responds to them, so I hope they all get included and answered, even though there are so many. 🙂 Hopefully, once the questions are addressed, it will smooth the collective feathers of the fanbase. There is nothing, of course, that would do that better than stating that SGA is renewed for another season. But — (since I know that’s highly unlikely) maybe it will help to establish the Universe idea a little more and reassure fans it’s not Voyager 90210.

    I’ve already begun my contingency plan though. If Universe does not really catch my eye, then I’ll simply turn to Sanctuary, BBC’s new show Merlin, and anything else that the SGA actors (or you and Paul) are a part of next year. I love your work, and I’ll stick by you guys wherever the path of life leads you. By 2010, Doctor Who will be back on regularly as well. So I’m set. 😀

    I’m also checking out Threshold with Brent Spiner in it. It’s interesting so far. I’m playing catch up right now with it. If I happen to run out of things to watch then I’ll tune in to the BBC’s Sarah Jones Chronicles.

    My loyalty as a fan is with the people involved in making SGA awesome. I know Mr. Wright is a part of that, but his interviews thus far have not won me over. lol.

    Anyway, whatever show/movie that you’re a part of, I’ll watch it! 🙂

  7. I look forward to the upcoming L.A. leg of our meet and greet tour. At least there we won’t have to worry about braving any sketchy neighborhoods.

    Dude, my old executive producer got held up at gunpoint in the doorway of our office building. Which was in BURBANK, two blocks from the Media Center. (Burbank, of all places? Who the hell gets held at gunpoint in Burbank?)

    Oh…wait. Maybe you were being sarcastic, there.

  8. Mr. M wrote:

    I’d like to start collecting questions for Stargate: Atlantis Costume Designer Val Halverson.

    Gee. I wonder what Das is going to ask? 😛


  9. Hi Joe,

    All good wishes to you and Paul as you head to LA. I just wish it was all a very bad dream and we’d wake up tomorrow to find you happily spinning a major story arc for Season 6. *woe-filled sigh* Still. At least we have the movie(s). And you, of course. 🙂

    Hmm. I see Carl Binder is still around. What is Carl up to these days anyway? Just wondering.

  10. To Artic Goddess and Wraith cake: thanks for the comments on life canadian. Other than an overnight stay in Winnipeg, I’ve not had the pleasure of visiting Canada. But what contacts i’ve had with persons northerly have been good ones. I realize that any big city will inevitably attract the same sort of quasi-sentient lifeforms that will drag down a neighborhood. But it’s nice to imagine, at least, a nation where people not only speak a language i can understand, but where such people and neighborhoods are the exception.
    to Mr. M. congratulations on your successful adventure into such a region. But for the sake of your family and your fans. please consider carrying a gps tracking device. This will reduce your opportunities to enhance the economic condition of some stray “vagrants,alcoholics, druggies, and street punks”.
    the best of luck to you and Mr. Mullie on the L.A. trip. A certain short story comes to mind at your description of the meetings. Amazing how fiction reflects reality at times. A sad adieu to Tanja, David, and Nathan. Here’s hoping we see them again in the future, having moved on to bigger (and better paying) projects.

  11. Question for Val: How do you choose what fabrics to make the costumes out of, other than what you can afford, and do different fabrics flow better on different people?

  12. To Val:
    How did you get your start in the Stargate franchise?
    When you look at other shows do you analyze the costumes and clothes and forget to watch what is going on with the characters?
    Have you ever looked at a finished episode and saw a mistake or something that you wished had never seen the light of day and said “oh crap that looks wierd.”
    And, lastly, what is the most beautiful outfit you have ever designed for a Stargate character?

  13. Wait, and what the hell? I thought you were in talks to work on Universe… and why did the front office team leave, given there’s about to be a new show? Tanja sent me the lovely autographed North Face bag (the 1st of 2 that got auctioned) and threw in your autograph to boot, so I’ll always remember her. How sad!

    Your description of your upcoming meeting was very funny. I can so imagine that attitude in LA. Good luck!

  14. Hi Joe,

    Excuse me while I go all girly and ask some questions of Val.

    Question for Val Halverson:

    1. Teyla’s costumes while pregnant were stunning. Very flattering. Was that a combined effort with Rachel and yourself to develop costumes that were flattering yet also practical for a rapidly growing stomach?

    2. I’m not sure if you were involved in the costuming for Continuum, but what happened with Vala’s sizing on her main Goa’uld costume? When she first appeared I couldn’t help but audibly say “Geez, look at those!”

    3. With the amazing advancements in materials over the last decade or so, has this made your job easier? What has been the best new material advancement for you?

    4. Odd question – Why is Rachel Luttrell always fitted with high-waisted pants? Her shape would seem to compliment hipsters similar to Vala.

    6. I loved the detail in the Ori costuming. So few colours, but the textures were brilliant. Adria’s costumes were AMAZING! If I was still attending a lot of formal functions I would have asked if I could hijack her wardrobe. Is there a particular type of costuming you enjoy? ie: good ol’ fashioned peasants or the complexity yet beauty of Adria’s costuming.

    7. Do you worry about any of the costuming dating? I use the series V as an example.

    Congratulations on a fantastic job. Costuming can either add to the reality of the show or pull you right out of it. Thank You.

    One of the ladies who made my costumes for close to 18 years suddenly died. My Mum and I arrived at her funeral to a mass of people. They were the girls that over the years she had dressed for stage.

    It was nice to see that even though she was behind the scenes, always getting in trouble for fitting us when we should have been on stage rehearsing and put under so much pressure to get dozens of costumes finished, her efforts did not go unnoticed. She was respected and appreciated as she rightly deserved.

  15. @ Trish – I agree. I don’t want to get back into *that* discussion, but suffice to say that I see Wraith more as predatory animals than anything else. Maybe it’s because they’re green – I dunno, I just can’t think of them on totally human terms.

    @ sheryl – Thanks for the heads up. Alas, we were not home. Friends – an older couple – invited us to dinner, and we had a very nice time (except for the part where two other guests kept going on and on about the financial crisis…gloating over the ‘rich people losing their money’…not really what I want to hear right now). But otherwise it was a lovely dinner, and the couple had an old player piano that we got to…well…play with. 🙂 Then we played dominos, and I sucked. 😛

    @ anneteldy – Oddly enough, I’ve been very depressed since coming home this evening, and can’t think of anything to ask. Maybe in the morning. It’s been a weird day…up and down, my emotions are all over the place. Happy one minute, down the next…hate when this happens.

    Woke up – felt great, as reflected in my comments yesterday. But then, things went weird. First, my sister and her husband are up visiting from Florida. This morning, my brother-in-law got word that his 83-yr old father had a stroke back home. His brother drove down from north Jersey, and the two are on their way to Florida. My sister has to now come to terms with the fact that she may have to be his caregiver, which – considering the type of man he is – won’t be easy.

    They were up to help with my grandmother’s house – an old carriage house that needed part of the floor replaced. It’s a cool place, the entire interior – walls and ceiling – are all wainscoting. It’s so thick and old it’s like steel – impossible to drive a nail through. Under the floors downstairs is concrete, with drains in the center of each of the three rooms. The room they’re working in has – if we identified them correctly – what appears to be bobcat prints in the concrete; certainly not dog, and too big for housecat (the floor is probably 100 years old, give or take). We think this room used to be the slaughter room for the farm, while the room at the opposite end – which once had large doors on the front – was for the carriage. It’s just a really neat building. But, it needs work, and now my folks are worrying about money.

    See, a couple of our customers are already having really bad financial problems due to this wall street mess. We live in a resort area – if the tourists (as much as they drive me crazy) don’t come, and if contractors can’t get loans for new construction, business will die and we won’t have anyone to service. I’m trying not to worry, but – honestly – it doesn’t look good. The hotel where my husband works laid off about 40 people – never have they done anything like that before. They opened a place in Atlantic City late in the summer, and it’s been struggling. They bought up a lot of property in our town, hoping to build condos, but no one is buying condos right now. Since my husband works in maintenance/engineering, they’re keeping him and three others on…but everyone under them has been laid off (indefinitely), and hubby now has the least seniority. He has a part-time business as well, but it’s not enough to live on. I am just holding my breath – not just for our jobs, but mostly for our health insurance. So, this money mess is starting to hit close to home. Too close.

    When we got home from dinner, one of our outside feral cats wasn’t around. I got worried because he’s always here. That didn’t help (once worry starts, it just cascades). Finally he showed up, happy as ever, but in the meantime I was out looking for squished cat in the road. 🙄

    Then, reading Joe’s blog – which I thought would make me happy with the car search and all, just depressed me more because it means SGA is really over, and I have little hope of getting more than one movie, and even less hope of a happy outcome for Todd and his buddies. I know it’s getting to be that time to just move on, but it’s still all very sad, when it should be loads of fun. A very downer season, despite how good it’s been so far. It just makes me feel melancholy to even think about it.

    THEN I got to thinking about what happened in the last episode, with Ronon getting to shoot up Wraith again, a la Midway. Really, Todd is a ‘victim’ here because he truly believes he’s been betrayed. It’s really not his fault, and had Sheppard been there, things would have been different. Still, the Wraith have to be killed anyway. It really wasn’t the best thought to have pop into my head right now, gloomy gus that I am at the moment.

    On top of all of it, I had too much sleep last night, so totally wide awake tonight, even though I NEED to go to bed, if just to let my mind settle down. My old lady cat, Marbles, has an OCD obsession with licking my hand (for the last half hour as I type), and even my chocolate/wine/old movie ‘sleeping pill’ isn’t working. I don’t like medicines, so not going to take tylenol pm or anything. I’m trying to think of all the organic, non-chemical ways to fall asleep, and…well…it’s just not happening. HOPEFULLY I’ll bore myself to sleep typing this…

    So, all that said, I just don’t feel like asking Wraithy questions since it all doesn’t really matter anymore. Show’s done. Hopefully I’ll feel better after a good night’s sleep – IF I get one. At least I have Tyler’s Q & A to look forward too, I was starting to think we had scared him off. 😉

    Sorry for being so…bleh. I just have too much on my mind, and it’s a mind that is super awake right now…even at 2 am. Thanks, Joe, for just letting me ramble…and being a bit ‘bloggy’. Sorry for that…just needed to vent to people I don’t have to look in the eye. Be assured that none of my frustration or whatever is directed at you in any way…I’m just feeling pissy, and I can’t even blame it on PMS. 😛


  16. Why is it that I suspect you don’t frequent the enlightening adventures of public transit either…? But to assure the fears of the non-Canuck readers here — *most* of the “street people” this side of The Line are a lot more polite.

    So, Joe… have you given any thoughts to maybe bringing TODD along to these “meet & greets”…? Seriously! He’s always struck me as the type who could charm the life out of The Suits literally!!

    Hmm… that sounded like a pitch for a new SG spinoff… — Hey DAS, whatcha think?

  17. For Val:

    Are you the one responsible for Ba’al’s costumes? If so, can I give you a huge hug? Those were absolutely fantastic! And, if that was you who got to dress Cliff, was he a good boy and wore what you told him too? I know Cliff is pretty easy going. I’ve been working with him on some Motivational CDs. He has a wicked sense of humour, so I can see him giving you a hard time just for fun.

    Patricia (AG)

  18. Opps spelled materinty wrong… darn it!

    Question for Val:
    What inspired the beautiful maternity outfits for Rachel? They were absolutely lovely! She was stunning in them… did you design them or get them off the rack?

    Will you be continuing with SGU or are you moving on too?
    Thanks for all your wonderful work on the show! In my humble opinion, the cloths make the scene!
    Patricia Lee

  19. I’m soo depressed :'(

    Stargate Atlantis is actually over…. the world is not fair!

    But the SGA universe will live on! As you guys plan for the next series of epic adventures through the stargate and beyond!:D

    Out of curiosity, though do you have any plans for the future? i.e. will you be writing a script for the stargate universe? Or will you be doing anything to do with stargate, after the atlantis has come to a end?

    A last minute question for Brad Wright, though probably this question has been asked a million times but i would like to hear the answer for myself, so i once more “Will we ever see/ hear the Furlings?”

    Oh, just on another note some question for Stargate: Atlantis Costume Designer Val Halverson.
    1) How do you guys plan out whose wearing what? Like who comes up with all the ideas?
    2) Do you gather inspiration off other shows i.e. Star Wars or StarTrek, maybe?
    3) Was there a character that you had particular troubles with designing a costume for?
    4) Out of all the costumes you’ve designed, which one (in your opinion) was the best one?

    Thanks for reading!

  20. Questions for Val:

    How much freedom do you have to design costumes? Are there strict guidelines in the scripts for all the alien races, or do you just get a general impression (village peasant, dress accordingly) from the scripts, and otherwise complete freedom in the colours/patterns/shapes of the clothes? How much do you have to work with other departments (e.g. art dept/set visualization) to come up with the perfect costume? Is there one person in charge of making sure everything comes together into one cohesive design (costuming + set + ??)?

    I really love the look of the new (season 4-5) Atlantis uniforms, especially with the bell-shaped sleeves. What inspired that change?

    I’m rather unobservant, and have only just noticed on some photos that Teyla’s leather jacket has laces on the sleeves. Was that a conscious choice to make the jacket more feminine?

    Thank you for your time!

  21. Enjoyed your description of your upcoming LA meetings. Very funny, Oh what a shallow and soul-less town I live in! But ya gotta love LA!

    Have fun and if you want to get away from the industry types and hear some amazing bar room blues, I know a great dive over by Pasadena. Go see Pat O’Brian and the Priests of Love at the First Cabin in Arcadia on the weekends.
    It’s impossible to hype how good this band is. Their patrons may have seen better days but the drinks are strong and cheap and music is awesome. I take my friends from out of town there when they visit and it never dispoints. Totally worth the drive.

    Oh, and btw…I’ve noticed this has become somewhat of an ad for the place, I swear I don’t work here nor will I gain anything financially.
    Good luck and enjoy your stay out here!

  22. Wow, I didn’t even think of your area of Canada being bad like that. I am very naive and pictured it to be perfect. After all, if is where Stargate Atlantis is made, it should be perfect (lol).

    Good luck in your meet and greets. I loved your conversational descriptions. As someone who listen’s to sales people a lot, I am always in the back of my mind thinking what they are really saying. Oddly, my brothers and sisters (we work together) believe the bull sometimes calling me negative, but in the end, I am usually right and they genuinely seemed mislead for some reason.

    I think that if one of us wins a lottery, we need to make a production company and hire you and paul as well as all the cast from SGA. We can have you write scripts/produce shows for Joe F., David H., Rachell L, Jason M. etc. Maybe have them all work on something together again, they make a great team. I wonder how one goes about that?

    By the way, I am going to point out that it is 4:30am here and I am not getting back to sleep very quickly (from 4am). I think the power of suggestion is working too hard on me as of late.

  23. Hilarious and entertaining entry, as always, Joe.

    But I gotta say, this felt almost like a “season premier” of a sort for the blog. For all these years now we’ve followed your adventures through life working at Stargate, and now the status quo has changed, and a new world has opened before us. The blog has been…shaken up.

    I sense a split in the blog regulars. Half will champion the new style of the blog and troll those who disagree to conform and be loyal, while the other half will be bitter and talk trash about the new, while reminicing and idolizing the old for illogical reasons. Soon, anti and pro sections of the comments will have to be established to avoid in-fighting, but it won’t work, Joe, it won’t work! Because of your decisions, the blog fandom will be in turmoil!

    I can just see it now; blog regulars saying stuff like, how dare you change your life like this! Your old life was better! Bring back Cookie Monster! And that, you obviously hate/doesn’t care about the regulars, to have changed your life so radically. Will you even talk about your old life, or will you just have it name-dropped?

    And they’ll continue to say, the new guest bloggers are taking up too much blog time! What happened to the old days when it was just Joe? The one-man team? We need more Joe blogs! Now we have to put up with all these new bloggers that, frankly, most of the regulars hate according to some solid statistics that I didn’t just pull out of my ass.

    Finally, what about Cookie Monster and Baron Destructo? They’d say. In truth, I’m sure the Antis think that they were kicked off of the blog to “add risks” and to “shake things up” to increase the number of hits on the blog! Did it work, Joe? I don’t think so.

    Luckily, thanks to many fan mail, a Save Baron Destructo campaign, a banner that appearened on The Today Show, and a non-peaceful protest for Baron Destructo’s return at this blog (I remember it; don’t you? There was a pipe bomb and everything), he returned a few days/weeks ago, once again entertaining us with his incredible wit, evilness, and accent. In the days to come, I hope that you announce his permanent return as a recurring character on this blog.

    But what of Cookie Monster? Rumor has it that he stole some of your cookies, Joe, and that’s why he’s not returning. Behind-the-scenes politics, and all that. I know a lot of people who thinks that his character was kicked off of the blog to make way for the “Weird Food of the Day” videos, which, by the way, isn’t being used that effectively, especially lately. I wonder if he’s reluctant to return. Perhaps we’ll be seeing Elmo in his place?

    Hmmm…somewhere along the line I seem to have went from hypotheticals to how I appear to feel. Oops.

    Rest assured though, those ARE hypotheticals. I am very much optimistic for this new take on your life, Joe, and I look forward to whatever it is that life brings you, which you’ll surely report to us.

  24. “I look forward to the upcoming L.A. leg of our meet and greet tour. At least there we won’t have to worry about braving any sketchy neighborhoods.”

    LOL – I just sprayed my laptop with water. Thanks for the laugh!

  25. I can’t wait for more stories (which you’ll probably only be able to tell after you get a new gig).

  26. So…you and paul are pounding the pavement hope you guys land a good gig….Joe I see your blogsite is valued at around 15,000.00 does the figure have to do with the hits a blog gets?? can you actually sell your site for tha much or is that just a numbers thing???

  27. When you go to these meet and greets, especially in LA..far from your haunts of Vancouver, is it on your own dime or do the people, who have asked for you, get a hotel for you to stay at?

  28. Hi Mr M!

    Thanks for the updates re: “interview”. It strikes me that landing that all important first job in an established series is the key to “follow on” work, just like in non-showbiz world. I have sat through interviews as interviewer and interviewee where all that was talked about was peers/friends and acquaintances in common…..Strange how that is supposed to be a barometer of one’s skill/aptitude..but there you go!

    Anyway, hope that the “JM + PM Meet and Greet Tour 2008” is successful….Do you need roadies for the tour? I’m thinkin’ black t-shirts with red lettering!

    By the by…anything planned for next Wednesday?

    Question for Ms Val Halverson:

    Thank you for taking the time to answer these questions!
    Aside from all the cool costume creations and wonderful fashions that have graced our screens in the past, I’m still a HUGE fan of the BDUs! I recently had the opportunity to visit Mr Paul Brown’s Legends Memorabilia stand at Ms Tapping’s Con in London and saw close up the Blue BDUs, as worn by SG1 back at the SGC….Are these standard issue or did you guys die a navy one so that it would be bright for the cameras? The shade is a really light blue. Just curious! (…and where can I get a pair!)

    Thank you!


  29. Hi Joe, sounds like you had fun wandering around (I assume you were on the east side?) When I visited my brother in Vancouver last year he drew a line on the city map for me and told me not to cross it!

    and now some questions for Val!

    Hi Val, I love the costuming on Stargate! (I have a bit of background in the field but ended up with a career elsewhere *pouts*) and just have to tell you that I think the work you and your whole staff have done is fantastic!

    Where did you get your training and how did you get into working for Stargate? What kind of a setup does the wardrobe dept have? Do you tend to build, or are you able to rent/buy for certain costumes? Do you contract out construction of some things that you need multiples of (BDU’s etc) or is all the sewing done in house? Where do you source your fabrics? Do the actors give you feedback on designs or are they pretty much happy to wear what you give them? – I seem to recall some “interesting” discussions with stage actors over the years 😉

    thanks for taking the time to answer our questions!

  30. Hi Joe

    have been a reader of the blogs for a while now, love the Blogs and i loved the stargate atlantis series..

    with your last name you have an Italian ancestory but are you sure that ther is no Irish in there some where. ( ha Ha .. I should know I am from NI.)

    Good luck in the job hunt maybe you should try good old auntie (the BBC) Dr Who and Torchwood would have fun with your ideas..

    Imagine Torchwood meets Dr MCkay..

  31. Hi Joe,

    So I take it you’re not going over to SGU? I sincerely hope that was your & Paul’s decision. There’s nothing more I would like than for someone to tell BW & RCC that their company is no longer desirable. (Yes, I know your still writing the Altantis movie) Good luck with all the meet & greets & hoping you land your dream job!

    Questions for Val:
    1) LOVED the offworld outfits in Season 4 and hope to see our heros in them for the movie(s)! I remember reading Rachel, and in particular, Jason get very involved in their costumes. Do David & Joe have less to say cause they don’t get to wear the cool “I’m from another planet wardrobe”? Or are they just not that into the whole clothes thing?
    2) The “on base” Atlantis outfits & Teylas & Ronans clothes are pretty snug. Do you usually have to resize them throughout the season as the actors gain or lose weight? I know several of them have mentioned how good the Craft Service food is:)
    3) Do the actors ever wear their own clothes? I specifically ask cause in ‘Miller’s Crossing’ the pants McKay wears look like some retro sixties Herman’s Hermit cast offs. They were so distracting & they didn’t seem like something that would belong to McKay.


  32. Another insight into the world of television. Thank you!

    Question for Val Halverson:

    What’s the average day like for a costume designer?

  33. To Val: First, let me say like others have said, that Teyla’s outfits, while attractive in general (and I appreciate how hard it must be to make something that’s good-looking, looks “native”, *and* is practical for fighting in), were especially fetching while she was pregnant. In particular, I loved her blouses in “Quarantine” and “The Kindred, Part 1”, and I adored that long, black coat, especially with the silvery underdress in the latter ep. Just gorgeous!

    And I love the Wraith costumes as well, particularly the Queens’. Todd’s also suits him very nicely, a good cut for him. I noticed that Michael’s costume was similar to the typical Wraith commander get-up, but something of a rust colour instead of black — I thought that was clever!

    Now my questions:
    1) I notice that Rodney is now wearing a plain cotton/canvas jacket in the field now instead of his leather one or his Atlantis uniform. What’s the story behind that? And was using both “lamp black” and “ivory black” in his outfit in “Tracker” intentional, to make the pieces stand out from each other, or just how it worked out?

    2) I like the casual, “alternative” clothes John wore in “The Shrine”, in his room. How did you decide to put him in such an outfit on his downtime — was it something Brad requested, something you felt best fit the character, did Flanigan have input? And is there a story behind the bracelet he was wearing?

    3) For things like alien boots, do you have a cobbler on the staff, or do you use “normal” shoes as a base and just cover them with material?

    4) Expanding on Breeze’s q, what costume have you been the least happy with? And have you ever designed a costume that just didn’t work out at all when it was finally put on the actor?

    6) Who are your idols amongst costume designers? And do you have any non-costuming-related, fashion-industry inspirations?

  34. *waves*

    It’s really finished isn’t it? 🙁 *sniff* Hope the meet and greets go well for you and Paul. Are you going to keep us all updated?

    Questions for Val

    Thanks Val for showing two fangirls all your wonderful costumes. We were the ones that got terrible giddy at Shep’s uniform and admired Rachel’s lovely maternity wear. Still think you could start off your own maternity range of clothing, they’d sell like hotcakes. Have you always designed for TV shows? How did you get into working for the Stargate franchise?

    And last one before I go… is there any chance you could umm have an accident with some of Shep’s shirts, so that us fangirls can get some chest peakage. 😉

    Well, I had to ask. 😀

    Thanks Val and Mr M 😀


  35. Mornin’, Joe..

    And a *hugs* for Das.

    Don’t go apologising for having a crappy day. We all suffer them at some point. That’s just life, right? I actually meant to tell you the other day that, thanks to you my dearest Todd-Lover, my lappy is once again wearing a new fandangled coating of pebble-dashed coke.

    I think it was something to do with your passing comment on Shep/Todd moments and the possible beastialities that kinda scenario might conjure up. Needless to say, snorting fizzy bubbles whilst trying not to choke, leaves one feeling a tad disorientated and mostly everything within spitting (literally) distance, completely coated. Thankfully, Jenks got out of the way in time, or i’d still be trying to untangle his sticky Labby locks right now.

    Sooo.. I owe you one, Das 😉


    I’m curious to know why Staff are leaving. Is this because of the cancellation of Atlantis, or just ‘one of those officey things’? Hope folks aren’t getting laid off work already.. that’d just bite >.>

    By the way, this morning’s blog entry brought a Sting track to mind and made me grin like a loon. Fortunately, there was only me and the coffee in the near vicinity, so I didn’t have to explain why I suddenly had a flash of you and Paul snooping around the back alleys of Soho.

    ‘Low Life’:

    “Fatal fascination for the seedy part of town
    Walk down the street and your head spins round
    Don’t be seen alone without your friends at night
    Take a gun or a knife to the low life

    Don’t have to be born into this society
    Pay for love but the hate comes free
    Bring enough money for the rest of your life
    Don’t bring your wife to the low life.. “

  36. Question for Val Halverson,

    Where do you find your inspiration to create the pieces you do?

  37. Hello there,

    I’ve read every questions to be asked to Mr Wright and I am very pleased to see that I am not the only one who want to see the greatly talented actress Claudia Black. We are hopping a great character arc for Vala or for Mrs Black as a main character in SGU.

  38. ahahaha sounds like downtown east side to me. I too was once lost there, luckily it was with my grade 8 class on a field trip. We aimlessly wandered the streets and then we finally found the police museum. After removing the drunk sleeping, possibly dead, homeless man from infront of the door, we had a great time!

  39. Hey Joe!

    Did you have a piece of the ice cream cake? Dairy Queen cakes are always good, though just make sure you don’t do what Carl did and eat it to fast. 😀

    That whole executive meeting transcript you made…why not use that as a basis for a show! Or, you could make a show that’s about nothing revolving around a group of individuals living in seperate apartments living different lives…you could call it ‘Jerry’ or something…


    Question for Val Halverson: In general, how long does it take to make a complex costume, such as a Wraith costume, and how much material is required to make one?

    Thanks as always!

    – Enzo Aquarius

  40. To Val
    Do you design the costumes to show off an actor or actresses’ “assets?” I imagine you try to do this while serving the story.
    Is there explicit direction to show a little skin here and there or make the leather tighter? Or is it just something that is done so routinely in show biz that you don’t even think about it?
    Have you ever had an actor/actress refuse to wear one of your creations because it was too revealing or they just weren’t comfortable in it?

  41. Hey Joe,

    Can’t say I have any questions for the time being, but just wanted to extend an obligatory ‘great read’ to you on this one. I laughed several times through.

  42. Is insomnia contagious?

    For some reason completely unknown to me (usually there’s a good reason, like laughter filtering through my open window from the floors above), I could not fall asleep last night!

    I’m gonna go back to the blog entry where you first mention insomnia and try out some of the suggestions people gave you…

  43. coucou Joseph!! Sa va…???

    Moi s apeut aller, mais mon copain ne vas pas bien, on la refuser un emplois et le cancer de son pére c’est agraver =(.

    J’ai deja poser des questions à Brad.
    J’ai eu une dure journée, avec mes 4 heure de comptabilité, j’ai d’ayieur eu la meilleur note de la classe..et dire que je n’aime pas -_-‘

    Ofaite, avez vous reçu ma carte??

    Aller gros bisou!!! je vous adore!!! a demain♥

  44. @ Perragrin – Thanks very much. *hugs* It’s not so much that I had a crappy day, but an emotional rollercoaster day…sometimes those are worse. And, it’s not stopping. Just got word that my sister’s father-in-law had a massive stroke, and they’ve only given him about 2-5 days. I’ve known this guy since I was about 8…long before his son married my sister. Joe – YOU may even know him, if you stayed in one of his motels while on that trip to Wildwood. Snarky Italian fella, like yourself. 😉 So, it’s all a bit upsetting, though – at his age – not totally unexpected.

    About that Todd/Shep thing…yeah…I remember blurting that out a couple days ago… 😳 It’s the one thing that – despite how sexy the Wraith are to me – just totally throws me off of the whole Wraith/human ship idea. To me, that’d be no different than a shepherd meddling in naughty ways with his flock…and I just don’t see Todd stooping that low. The Hive‘s ‘Edward Sleazyhands’, however… 🙄

    Brain still isn’t working – so just a few quick (who am I kidding) questions for Val:

    1. In the first two seasons of SGA, Wraith costumes seemed much more varied and detailed. Lately, the male Wraith costumes have become more simplistic in design (not in material), with little variation. Is there a reason for this?

    2. It appears that the material on Todd’s coat has changed. Of the the three pieces on the upper arm (?epaulettes?), the center one is now smooth. Is this to signify a change in rank, or simply a design choice?

    3. Wraith finger armor thingys – what are they for? (NO one is exempt from this question!)

    4. Male Wraith – boxers or briefs?

    Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. I really wish I could think of better questions, but right now my mind is elsewhere.


  45. It’s only me again. I was most upset earlier about you trailing round Vancouver fearing for your car in those seedy neighbourhoods. We to have that same problem in Liverpool *apologises to the other scousers on the blog* We have come up with a great solution. Thought it might work for you as you’re here, there and everywhere. Now you’ll have no need to worry about your car if you follow this vid. 😉

  46. Hey Joe

    The company I work for has a genre division ROGUE Pictures (they released The Strangers earlier this year) and I’ve pointed them in your direction. A call was made to your reps. What genre is your feature film that you are pitching?

    I believe you have my email address as part of this post. Feel free to reach out direct if you want any more information from me or if you’d like to be put directly in touch with ROGUE.


  47. pg15 wrote:

    I sense a split in the blog regulars.

    This isn’t GateWorld, PG15. (Yes, I know you were kidding.)

    das wrote:

    3. Wraith finger armor thingys – what are they for? (NO one is exempt from this question!)

    There it is! The one I knew you’d ask. 😉 Since Evil Kenny said the finger armor isn’t a prop, it would make sense that it’s wardrobe. Perhaps you should ask Ms Halverson if the finger armor concept was created by the Costume Department or if they were told that the costumes must include it when they discussed the look of the Wraith wardrobe with the bosses.

    das wrote:

    4. Male Wraith – boxers or briefs?

    Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. I really wish I could think of better questions, but right now my mind is elsewhere.

    I’m surprised you didn’t ask if they dress left or right. 😀

    Das, sorry about your friend’s stroke, etc.

    Anne Teldy

  48. @Das:

    Oookaaay… Now i’ve got this bizzare image of Todd in leather wellies and with half an ear of corn shoved between his lovely gnashers.

    That’s disturbing.. even at *this* time of night 0.o

    Really sorry to hear about your sister’s father-in-law. Thoughts and prayers are with everyone and if you ever need to vent (guess that includes Todd/Wraithy venting, just so long as it keeps it’s paws off Shep), then click on the name and vent away 😉


    Welcome to ‘JoeWorld’.

    Only there’s no forums. Yet.

    “Bitching is situated to the left and those wishing to go straight for the jugular, we ask that you please keep to the right. In the unlikely event of an emergency, you are asked to bend over and kiss your own arse goodbye as the rest of us are simply far too busy complaining. Thankyou.”

  49. “When we got home from dinner, one of our outside feral cats wasn’t around. I got worried because he’s always here. That didn’t help (once worry starts, it just cascades). Finally he showed up, happy as ever, but in the meantime I was out looking for squished cat in the road.”

    Oh Das, been there, done that. In the early hours of the morning, in the freezing rain with a fading torch and praying like hell that I find nothing.

    Mine also showed up hours later like nothing had happened. I, (with no sleep and the dawn already kissing the rain-soaked horizon) was so happy I could have killed him (How’s that for mixed emotions).

    That day I stayed home and set about skinning him to make warm booties.

    Okay so I kid about the skinning part, but there have been days… 🙂

  50. Hey Joe, just found your blog, love the book reviews btw, and its fantastic, thanks for writing it.

    My question is about Tayla and Kellers jackets, the women cosplayers are going mad trying to find out if these are original concepts or mods off of an existing jacket. Oh, and if so, what jacket?

    Thanks! Erin

  51. Hi !

    Question to Val :

    Who got the idea of the new suits, “striped jackets” ?

    It’s such a good idea.

    And why only the Department heads wear them ?

    Wich material are they made from ???

    Thanks a lot ! 🙂

  52. @ anneteldy – *raises eyebrow* Okay – NOW who’s the pervert??! (For the record, ‘Edward’ dresses left. Or, maybe it was right. *scratches head* Oh drat, I can’t remember…I’ll have to go check again… 😉 At least we know about the warriors – they’re all just front and center. 😯 )

    Thanks about the other thing. It’s my sister’s father-in-law, and we’re all pretty close, so it has the whole family a bit upset. I’m okay, but things are a bit turned around right now because we don’t know from one hour to the next what’s going to happen. Not emotional, just…everything feels a bit surreal. I’ll be fine, just concerned for my sister’s hubby and his brother…this is going to be hard on them.


  53. Hi Joe, when you are in LA be sure to head to the nearest Famima’s to stock up on Japanese junk food for your hotel room. I usually end up getting more stuff than I have time to eat, but I love the little rice crackers wrapped in seaweed and the big pork dumplings — although it is possible to overdose on those.


  54. I second the nod to Rogue Pics; Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz are way awesome.

  55. Questions for Val,
    First I envy your job. The creative process must be very rewarding. How many people do you have on your team? When costuming for the main characters, do you keep to a color palate for each character, besides the uniforms of course? What the percentage of costumes are made from scratch and gotten from other sources? Do you reuse anything from SG1? Thanks for you time

  56. das said:

    4. Male Wraith – boxers or briefs?

    Unless they are wearing the undies that Wraith Cake mentioned the other day, I’d be thinking they’d go Kramer style.

    Hope things settle down for you das. It seems to be a bad time for a lot of people. I’ve had a few drop-ins at my place this week for chats from people who feel they have reached the end of their tether and can’t see a way out.

    I’m a business owner so I’m sharing your apprehension re the economy. Our dollar has dived (from .95USD to .68USD in a matter of weeks) and we buy in USD to I’ve got a lot of balls in the air and am just waiting for one to drop so I can get a feel for what direction we need to head in.

    The economy is cyclicle. The difficult part is we have had so many good years (around x3 what a normal cycle would contain) so it is making it hard to determine how long this down will last for.

    This economic turmoil has solidified the plan that my Hubby and I have of selling everything (we’ll hold onto our house – they aren’t making any more land!), buying a little place on the beach in a less fortunate country, run a simple business locally and LIVE! Get back to basics.

  57. PG15 said “… And they’ll continue to say, the new guest bloggers are taking up too much blog time!

    … frankly, most of the regulars hate according to some solid statistics that I didn’t just pull out of my ass. …”

    I do hope you are kidding, because I like hearing from Joe’s guests, especially those involved behind the scenes at Stargate. BTW, I am studying statistics now (exam next Wed) and I can tell you that the numbers can be manipulated to show whatever you want!!

    Hi Joe, {{{{{HUGS}}}} for your bad day. I too am gettig ready for more job interviews. The one thing I hate is walking out and knowing I wont hear from the propective employer again – not even to tell me I didnt get the job. VERY bad manners.

    I had a few questions for Val sorted out in a word do somewhere, but others have asked most of them, so instead of repeating, I will just go with the ones others haven’t asked.

    For Val: first I would like to get the fan-girly questions out of the way – do you have vacancies in the workshop? I’ll do anything, such as make coffee; sweep the floor; keep tape measure warm. 😛 🙂 Wouldn’t want the guys to catch cold froma cold tape measure. 😉 🙂

    Okay, let’s get serious.

    1. When making costumes, do you use such dressmakers notions as, interfacing or buckram in collars and under buttonbands on shirts and jackets?

    2. When getting a breakdown of the number and style of costumes required for an episode, do you recycle costumes? I as this because quite often in SG-1 (e.g. Camelot storyline) and SGA (the world featured in S3 “The Game”), the inhabitants of a visited world are similar to Earth’s mediaeval period.

    3. Has there been a time when a costume has needed something “extra” to help the actor get into it? This question comes from hearing that in Fantastic 4, the actor portraying Mr Fantastic needed vaseline and talcum powder to help him get into his blue bodysuit costume. *rolls eyes*

    4. Did Ivon Bartok bring his camera into your workshop for the Special Features section of Season 5 dvds?

    Finally, thanks for taking the time to answer our questions.

  58. questions for Val

    Is there a reference photo library of all the Atlantis costumes? Will we get a look at it in some form or MGM have veto? Would be fun to have a photo DVD-RAM of the Atlantis costumes along with audio commentary.

    Which costume is the most time consuming to produce?

    Which costume gave wardrobe the most headaches during filming?

  59. @ Perragrin – Whoa, whoa, WHOA!! It was ANNE who was asking about the left or right thing…I’m totally innocent here!! And besides, where do you get off saying Todd only has HALF an ear of corn?! Surely he has a whole damn BUSHEL shoved down his…oh, wait. ‘Gnashers’ aren’t…and you weren’t talking about anneteldy’s remark…but my comment #49…and…ugh.

    Damn your British slang! 😛 I TOTALLY read that wrong… 😳 *Crawls under a rock and hides*

    CHANGING the subject…

    @ deeinsouthafrica – I think all cat people have been there at one time or another – and when you finally find them safe and sound, you DO want to strangle them! Right after smothering ’em with kisses. 🙂 This cat is feral – we have three regulars now, all spayed/neutered – who we feed/shelter. There is a feral cat program in our area to try to keep their numbers down, and these have taken refuge in our yard. Two let us pet them when we feed them, but only then. But they seem to feel safe in our yard, and that makes me happy.

    AH!!! Hubby just called! He’s gonna be in a MOVIE!! LOLOL!

    This movie, being filmed in Wildwood/Cape May (see, Joe – I TOLD you that you can film here!): http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1303803/

    It’s about kids, that’s all I know – doesn’t seem like a big production. Hubby is going to be an extra in a wedding scene, supposedly (god, I HOPE they don’t ask him to DANCE!! 😆 ) He was just changing the locks on the building where they have all the film equipment stored, and they recruited him, and asked if he knew any other young, handsome men they could use as extras. His head is so HUGE right now! He’s gonna be impossible to live with…

    So, he calls me up, I answer the phone, and in his best Steve voice, he says, “I am your death, that is all you need to know.” He then said he knows he can play a Wraith now, and asked if he could get a white wig. I have him SO trained! 😆

    I’ll let you know how – and if – this turns out. I’m sure this is just a cheesy movie that’ll go straight to DVD…but at least he’ll have fun!

    (SEE…the rollercoaster is at the top…just waiting to plunge right back down…weeeeee!)


  60. Good luck with the meetings in LA. If you run out of people to dine with, let me know. I may not know many good places to eat (due to the fact that I just plain don’t get out much), but I can whip up a mean quesadilla. 😉 … Man, I really should find out where some good food is around here.

    And just FYI, we seem to have not yet gotten the memo that it’s fall, so it’s still like 80 degrees outside. … I miss seasons.

  61. Query for Val:
    – Of the fan-recreations of costumes from the show, do you have a favourite or one that impressed you the most?

  62. Hi Joe,

    How are you going? Hope you are well!
    Does this mean that you & Paul are going to work together?
    Are you going to be co-writing the Stargate Atlantis movie/s?
    I cant wait to see more of your work! I think you are ana amazing writer! My friend sent me SGA episode that you wrote “Whispers” I gotta say! I absolutely love it! I love creepy/scary stuff like this! Kudos!

    Best of luck with your meet & greets in L.A. I hope everything turns out really well for you.

    Take care & happiness always!


  63. Hey Joe,

    Good thing I wasn’t drinking when I read the commment about LA *not* having bad neighborhoods. 😆 HA HA HA HA HA!!! Having lived in southern California for about 8 years, I found that hilariously sarcastic. Uh… you DO have body guards to go with you, right? 😉

    Break a leg out there, ok?

    @Sheryl: (hope I spelled your name right!) I live in Tampa. We first lived in Melbourne so my husband could go to FIT. No BOBCAT run-ins over there. Saw alligators, though. Then I moved to Tampa and figured we’d have less wildlife. Nope! Wrong! I guess we have BOBCATS in Tampa! 😯 Those are scary! I have total respect for them. And then a few years ago an alligator decided to attack this woman around 2:00 am. RIGHT in dowtown Tampa. She was in her car, luckily. The 911 call must have been pretty funny, though. If I remember right, the cops got there in time to see the alligator trying to take another bite out of her car. That’s when I learned that old saying is so true:

    It’s a jungle out there!

    @Narelle: Mine aren’t allowed on the beds or couches, either. Sebastian used to sleep with us before Erin came along. We have a queen size bed. So it was tight when Sebastian reached his full size. 110 pounds! One night I woke up and could barely breath or move. Sebastian had decided to lay across my entire body. His huge head was on my chest and his forelegs were pinning down my shoulders and arms. I couldn’t hardly hear, either. I had a giant paw in each ear. 😯 After I woke up and saw that big, black nose a few inches from my face, I calmed down. Then I tried to move or wake up the sleeping dog. No luck! I fell back to sleep, somehow. In the morning I was really sore, though. And I’ll never trade that memory for anything. Not even 700 billion dollars!

    @Das: I sooo agree! All I will add is, it ain’t easy being green. 😉 Oh and Allie and I put on our *work boots* this morning to do some yard work in prep for the home inspection by the Rescue Pyr group. I tell her to look for spiders in the boots. I’m in the kitchen looking for my sunglasses when I hear Allie exclaim, “Mom! There’s a snake in my boot!” She walking into the kitchen carrying her boot. I said, “Ha ha ha! No, really! Check for spiders.” Then, sounding like Woody from *Toy Story*, Allie says, “Thar’s a snake in mah booooot!” And she turns the boot up to my face. So I peer in. She was NOT kidding. There WAS a snake in her boot! I think the snake ate them before the poor thing died. No clue how it got there.

    I guess it’s not just spiders that end up in boots. I thought you’d enjoy that story because it involves NOT finding a real spider. 🙂

    Trish 😀

  64. You are joking right? Do you mean you won’t have to trapes around L.A. on you own? I think that’s what you mean because there’s no way L.A. is anything like Vancouver–Vancouver’s purse snatching escapades are a little less severe to say the least, if you know what I mean. Unless people want to live in a barricaded, gated community with glass embedded in the walls, they’ll have to make due with “walking on the opposite side of the street”.
    Also, no wonder you’re not getting sleep–trying to find work is so stressful!! Have you thought about just being a writer, or getting into graphic novels? I think J. Michael Straczynski, from Babylon Five returned to writing full time. I just bought a comic of his (good stuff, on Spiderman).

    The one thing that is fortunate is that a) you have an agent to smooth things out for you a head of time, b) you have Paul with you (for support and because he’s in the same position you’re in) and c) you’ve probably spoken to other people who’ve worked with the people your “sitting with” to know whether it will be worth the stress to work for them.

    But seriously, have you thought about working in a manner where you are not financially dependent on a production company (or whatever is involved with picking up a new series). Unless one is independently wealthy, I understand that it is quite difficult for middle class writers, and of course that is a broad financial range, to remain employed in the television industry. It’s so unpredictable even in the most stable of times. I’m sure your family has told you this quite often (invest in stock–obviously not now ug!) Even “A” type personalities crave predictability.

    The one trapI hear quite a bit about from a few friends in the television industry in Toronto is that it is easy to believe the hype about your own saleability. One thing is for sure: popular writers are not often “skilled” writers, a popular actor does not equal a skillful and seasoned actor, and a director with backing does not mean he/she is a good director (with backing). That part about the popularity, and the backing is not so predictable, like the stock market. I see why those in the entertainment industry are so high strung: they try to get security from a career that is simply incapable of giving it–no matter how “in” one feels with the industry.

    I guess what I’m saying is…always have a back door, at least you’ll sleep through the night.


  65. @ Trish – 😯 Wow. The only thing I’ve ever found in a boot is a stinky ol’ sock. 😛


  66. Joe,
    I have only discovered this blog a few months ago and haven’t commented before, but just letting you know that I love reading it every day. 😀 thanks!

    Questions for Val Halverson:

    1) I really love the new uniform jackets, what was your inspiration for the design?

    2) I am interested in becoming a costume designer or working in a costume department, do you have any suggestions or tips for people like me to achieve this?

    3) The wraith queen’s costume in Spoils of War is really amazing. I’m planning on making one as close as I can to that one for next year’s Comic-Con, are there any design details that can’t be seen or construction tips you could perhaps share?

    Thank you so much!

  67. Lol, the meeting sounds a lot like the 10 or so interviews I’ve had over the past couple of months.

    I got asked to go to 2 interviews for a supermarket (owned by Wal-Mart) and at the first one, groups of us had to make towers out of balloons and sellotape and see whose was the highest. Seriously. Anyway, I didn’t hear from them for a month after my second interview, and finally they phoned me last night asking if I could go in for ANOTHER interview. Fortunately, I’ve now been employed by a much better company so could tell them where they could stick it.

    For Val: I’ve recently become interested in making my own costumes for conventions, though I’m a bit of a novice. Any tips you can give me on techniques?

    Also, do you know if there ever going to be replica costumes from the show available for purchase, or at least patterns to make our own?

  68. Question for Val:

    When you are designing both the ‘human’ and alien’ costumes, do you try to avoid being inspired too much by current trends so that in 10 or 15 years time the costumes won’t look dated??


  69. Hi Joe,

    Michael Mina’s XIV is pre-opening here in LA in the next week or so. Also don’t miss Ramsay @ the London (the pigs head is spectacular), Fraiche down by Sony, and Anisette in Santa Monica. Plenty of other suggestions for ya down here. Keep meaning to come say hi down at ComicCon but always get trapped in meetings, and never got a chance to come over to Vancouver when I was on X2 a few years back. If you’re in town, would love to say hi. Drop me an e-mail.


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