Today, we were back at the production offices/killing fields to finish beating out episode 2.  We arrived to find Rob waiting for us.  Also waiting for us was our second treat in as many days, compliments of Mr. Cooper.  This time: bagels, cream cheese, and rugelach that, as far as I could tell, came in five different flavors: delicious chocolate, delectable cinnamon, tasty apricot, alright cherry, and abysmal crisco.  Then, the wonderful Anna, who gifted us with an assortment of chocolates on Tuesday, gifted us with another assortment today.  As I munched on dark chocolate-covered marzipan, thoughts turned to lunch and the veal cutlet sandwiches we’d heard so much about from California Sandwiches.  It was at this point, that Alex launched into one of his most entertaining rants of the week –

Alex in rant mode.

According to Alex, he’s never met people so food-obsessed.  If we’re not talking about what we’re going to eat for breakfast, we’re talking about what we want to eat for lunch.  If we’re not talking about what we want for lunch, we’re talking about what we’d like to have for dinner.  And if we’re not talking about what we’re planning to eat, then we’re talking about what we recently ate.  Alex felt the need to point out that we’d enjoyed the hotel’s breakfast buffet followed by bagels with cream cheese and rugelach followed by chocolate followed by, in all probability, a veal cutlet sandwich for lunch!  He made it clear that while he would accompany us to California Sandwiches, he would, in all probability sit out lunch.

The big-ass veal cutlet sandwich Alex ate at California Sandwiches. And, yes, he ate the whole thing.

We returned from lunch to discover more treats awaiting our arrival: chocolate chip cookies and chocolate toffee brittle, compliments of Anna again!

Anna presents...Treat Time III: The Quickening!

As I started snacking on the cookies, an incredulous/disgusted Alex declared he couldn’t watch and was going out to walk off his sudden onset queasiness.

Amateur.  Give him two months with me and he’ll be eating like a pro!

Anyway, besides eating, we did manage to finish breaking episode 2 which is going to be A LOT of fun.

Later, we were joined by Sue, Klaus, and Matthias (who was delayed a day by the “snowstorm”.  Apparently, Air Canada had informed him that they were under no obligation to get him on another flight to Toronto – this despite the fact that AIR CANADA had cancelled his original flight!) and we spent several hours discussing scripts, scheduling, stunts, visual effects, and North American vs. European location shoots.  We’ll be picking up the conversation tomorrow but, regardless of how that chat goes, Paul and I have a pretty good idea of our game plan at least.  For now, all we have to do is write two scripts and a bible in two weeks.  Oh, and, hopefully, get a deal in place.

Tonight, I had dinner with Fondy.  Alas, Black Hoof (they of the brain ravioli) don’t take reservations and Fondy didn’t want to chance heading down and risking an unbearable wait.  I guess I’ll have to save Black Hoof (they of – if a certain Toronto foodie is to be believed – the “hipster doucebag” clientele) for my return visit.  Instead, we had okay thai, then followed up with tea and some tea place.  I got to check out the T.O. property and, as a superfantastic bonus, also got to see kids…

Brie. What a big girl!
Stewie. Look at the size of those ears!

46 thoughts on “February 3, 2011: Toronto Day #3!

  1. You’re starting to make me want to become a writer. Not sure why. I think it’s because I know what I want to see on TV and not many shows do that (obviously SGU is one of the only shows that I really enjoy).

  2. It’s Brie and Stewie! They are so gosh-darned CUTE. Fondy’s ankles were safe because the Frenchies were gnawing on each other. Thanks for the hilarious video.

    Alex is cute, too, but he’s hysterical. Our Joe? Food-obsessed?? 😆

    I laughed harder and harder the further I read. He’s probably wondering where your slender self puts away all that food. Listen, mister: 😀 Skinny people are eating champs. My Chinese S-in-law & her Mama can demolish plate after plate after plate at the seafood buffet. And I’m a 1-and-done kinda gal. I just watch in awe.

    You’ll have to give away your secret eventually, Joe. You’ll have to tell Alex the only way you can eat like that and look svelte is to haul (ahem!) twice a day on the treadmill. And/or do a P90 DVD.

    Forget the Iron Chef or Iron Man competitions. Joe can do the Iron Gourmet any day. 😀

  3. awwwwww. Brie and STewie: those two are so cute together. I am sure they are glad to see you. To Alex: Get with the program and learn from the master——Joe will teach you some things!

  4. Wow! I don’t think God was able to write a Bible in two weeks!

    Question: Is the cast of your new show already in place? How do you write fun stuff if you don’t know the strengths and weaknesses of the actors that will be involved in the project?

    Thank! And Good Eats!

  5. Brie and Stewie are soooo cute! Brie is, I fear, the new Lulu. 😀

    Oh, and Alex needs to meet my dad. At 81 years of age, he can out-eat anyone. All he does is fret over what he’s going to eat next. He eats breakfast, goes in the office, calls my mom on the phone (the house and office are just a about 50 yards apart) and asks what she’s making for lunch. He goes over early for lunch, comes back late from lunch, and in a half hour is back on the phone, calling mom to find out what’s for dinner. He’s obsessed. 🙄

    Sounds like you’re enjoying yourself, Joe. Does this mean it’s a done deal? IF so, what happens if something comes about for Stargate (series or a movie)? Will you still be on board? Nice that you got to meet up with Fondy, I hope she’s doing well.

    Gotta go. It’s been a really rough day. Between my brakes going on my car – AGAIN (so much for the week-long repair and car rental a 10 days ago) – and my little war with Whores (a.k.a. Bank) of America, I’m just done in. Went to sleep at 7:30, woke up at 11…just trying to chill. It’s not working. Whatever anyone does, never try to refinance through Whores of America. Worst thing I ever did, but I figured since they took over my mortgage when Countrywide died, it was the logical move. HA! I am SUCH an idiot. We have great credit. I’ve never been late on a payment. You would think this process would be smoooooth sailing. Yeah, right. 🙄 They say they can’t verify my employment because I work in a family business, and I make my own payroll (since, ya know – THAT’S MY FREAKING JOB, YOU IDIOTS!!!!!!!). It doesn’t matter that I have given them my tax returns, my w-2s, my bank statements, my employee wage reports direct from the state site, blood and tissue samples, and my first born…none of it matters because I do my own payroll, and fill out my own W-2s. Well, yeah…who else is gonna do it? Oh, on top of that, they called today to tell me that ALL the paperwork I faxed to them was ‘stuck’ in their – THEIR – fax system, and because they won’t be able to get it out of THEIR fax system for a week, my loan app will be cancelled as of today. BLOODY, FREAKIN’ WHORES. Another guy said not to worry, they would take care of it – but this is the game they play – Good Cop, Bad Cop. They call me at home when they know I’m at work, leave threatening messages that they will cancel because the paperwork isn’t in by the end of the day. They did this to me when I was in the hospital, then again on Christmas Eve (knowing that no one was going to be available in their offices until Monday), and again just before New Years – and each time I send them the freakin’ documents they call back and say ‘oh, we need ONE more thing, and ifyoudon’tgetittousNOW,you’recancelled’, and we go all around again. The ONLY reason I’ve stuck with it is because I’m already out $400 for this whole process. I nearly had a nervous breakdown tonight over the whole damn thing…I don’t normally ‘lose it’, but tonight I did. You would have been proud of me, Joe – I had a real Rush moment, or something. I screamed at no one in particular, punched a few things (not Mr. Das, don’t worry – I sent him off to church – at least one of our souls can be saved, maybe), and basically cursed myself for ever getting into bed with these whores in the first place.

    On top of all of this I have a bazillion doctors to see for my gut, my foot, my tooth, my eyes, and a funny spot on my nose. Also, my cat wakes me up in the middle of the night crying like someone is ripping out her butthole (I swear she’s deaf as a doornail now), and I just totalled up all the medical bills I owe from my hospital stay (the part not covered by insurance), and Mr. Das’ little trip to the ER a month ago (he has no insurance right now), and it comes to a grand total of $4500.00…that I don’t have.

    I am totally screwed, and NOT in a good way. Needless to say, I ate a WHOLE FREAKIN’ BAR OF ‘MARIJUANA’ (a.k.a. Ghirardelli 72% chocolate) TONIGHT! Yeah, Joe…I’ve been reduced to eating supermarket chocolate to save myself from a goddamn nervous breakdown. Me…eating supermarket chocolate. Don’t you feel guilty now? 😉

    Okay. Yes. I DO feel better. Thank you.



  6. Perhaps one day you will come to Malta to do a location shoot….

    Game of Thrones was recently here, they filmed in Mdina (the silent city) which doubled as a medieval town!

  7. Hi Joe,

    Still anxiously awaiting word on Stargate…… If it does come back, will you still be a producer/writer?

  8. @DAS

    “Whores of America” should be avoided at ALL costs!! I read a financial article last month about them and their “clerical” work… They’ve been screwing with people who don’t even deal with them!! They make the IRA look like Fairy Godmothers!!

    A little advise, keep an eye on your “credit rating” report. Inform THEM about WoA and what’s going on. If only to keep ahead of it all… Talk to your local NEWS people too! The more people who are aware of this crap, the better! — BTW, if I can find that article again, I’ll send it to you.

  9. @Joe: Send the girl (Das) some chocolate, already! Brie is looking as pretty as ever, and Stewie is adorable. Glad you got to see them!

  10. For some reason, Im slowly starting to loose any faith in anything ‘Stargate’ emerging in the future :/

  11. Joe, don’t these people understand. You are a professional eater. 🙂 Alex will get it eventually. Glad things are going well, and I enjoyed seeing the pictures of Brie and Stewie.

    @das: My hubby used to work for a bank. I could tell you stories–lots and lots of stories. 🙂 Let’s just say I’m glad he doesn’t work for a bank anymore.

  12. Im afraid my debate with others has gotten out of hand and they simply refuse to back down. Could you please answer this question: Has there ever been anyone else aboard Destiny before the expedition? Thanks.

  13. Das: I hate banks! Wishing you good luck and stay calm vibes….
    ganymede has an excellent point-check your credit report!!!!

  14. Das: Same here with BOA taking over mortgage. I figure I’ll find a new lender after spending days fighting them BEFORE the housing market fell. I know they have zero desire to refinance now.

    OMG, I have missed Brie and Stewie! Please ask Fonde to get us pics more often. LOL on the video, they make fierce noises.

    Joe, you have to admit that Alex has a point… you do bring “foodie” to a whole new level.

  15. Yay, Brie and Stewie! I so needed a smile today!

    Dad’s estate is sucking the life out of me. Defense Financing keeps losing paperwork, I have to keep resubmitting. Mentally painful each time, on top of frustration, especially each time I have to handle the letter from my friend explaining the last time he saw dad alive.

    I had to hire a professional crew to clean up his basement, apparently they took it to bare walls. I have yet to see it, but I know I’ll cry. And the relator is being nice, but her listing just went from two bath four bedrooms, to two bedrooms, one bath and an unfinished basement.

    and a pipe broke.

    and my brother won’t work in Sundays to help us clean up the place. What an ass. He makes more work than he finishes.

  16. Although I think Das needs a premium chocolate infusion stat.

    I love the way you listen, Joe.

  17. Das: When people smoke a lot of marijuana, they are called “pot heads”. Any clue what to name someone who eats a lot of Rx chocolate?

  18. Feeling better this morning – amazing what chocolate, a glass of red wine, and nearly 12 hours of sleep will do! Okay, okay…and a little prayer. I can’t give all the credit to chocolate. 🙂


  19. I have to ask: How do you keep from becoming as round as a ball with all that you eat? If I ate even half what you do I’m sure I’d be 300 pounds easy.

  20. Two scipts and a bible… have fun creating new and interesting characters…. quick question mr m, when are we going to know what this mystery show is and when you work on your bible-what actually goes into the make up of it. Hope u all have a good day including those reading your blog… its sad Stargate feels like an ex girlfriend now… i miss here…. but theres more out there… besides her cool uncle… aka you… is still ultra cool and is still in the biz

  21. Tammy Dixon wrote: “Das: When people smoke a lot of marijuana, they are called “pot heads”. Any clue what to name someone who eats a lot of Rx chocolate?”

    Fat. 😛


  22. apparently theres a chance that if the ratings for the last 10 episodes of SGU increases significantly, SyFy might reconsider their decision. dunno how likely that will be.

    I am actually pretty crushed by SGU’s (and by extension the entire Stargate franchise) end, all at the hands of the idiot suits at SyFy (that channel has been going downhill fast for the last few years and this is just the latest in a long line of screw ups on their part).

    but then we’ve still got 10 episodes left to look forward to, and David Hewllett is in one of them (Yay!:D), so long as the blue aliens make a (proper) re-appearance in the last 10 episodes I will be somewhat satisfied.

    the blue aliens rock!!!

  23. Hey Joe,

    I have to agree with Chris your making a writer’s life look like its a great life.

    The more you write about your guys work on this show- the suspense of knowing what it is, is getting to me. I will tune if it will be aired in the US for sure. BTW will it be aired in the US? I’m also glad you set us straight about us not guessing the show.
    So I told me coworker she was full of it (the poromo spot about a new show from the SGU folks) while eating a big ice cream sundae in front of her and her withering will power on her diet. HA HA HA! Karma is on my side! sayeth Scott… (well at least for now).

    Been on the facebook forums and we’ve been talking to Craig Engler with Syfy and his explanation article of ratings.
    Well I see what he is saying but I strongly feel that there should be a new way to do the ratings system game.

    Disparity is what I am feeling Joe with SGU. Engler didn’t even sound like another season or a 2 hour show to wrap things up to give it closure was a thinkable thing. All I heard was $ $ $ coming from him. I presented the idea that it was at least the right thing to do (give something for closure) with all the fans and the franchise history. I told him Stargate Universe wasn’t a flash in the pan – its got history. That got no response from him.

    I don’t know about others but we could use some encouraging words again (if you got any).

    Soooooo sad. Has Brad given up too? Like another person posted today – if this show takes off can we not expect to see on SGU anymore?

  24. Just watched Resurgence for the third time and let me tell you this, its beautiful.. I mean writing, shooting, acting, fx, music..everything.. Although I liked the action in SGA more, this is probably the best action-centric episode in the whole franchise.. (err may be a draw with Lost City pt 2).

    I hope SGU gets picked up so that we can see more of this..

  25. Hi Joe,

    Have you read Heinlein’s books featuring the character Lazarus Long? If so what do ya think of ’em?

    I enjoy stories that involve time-travel, parallel dimensions, alternate universes, etc. You have provided good book reviews in your blog before, it’ll be cool to hear your thoughts on Heinlein’s works.


    Sean D.

  26. @scott_land: agree with everything you said–don’t think we’ll see any closure from the ScyFY end though. And I know what you mean about being discouraged. I read an interview from one of the SGU stars the other day, and it really sounded like they were moving on and not expecting anything to happen. So sad.

  27. Joe,
    Alex will learn. Isn’t food all there is to life? He will definitely learn if he’s around you and Rob long enough.

    Geez. Banks do suck. We refinanced because our bank wanted us to do it (they really wanted people to refi, don’t know why). It took them six months to approve it. Luckily they were nice about it. But six months for something so simple? At least we’re saving some money now. So sorry that BofA were such dicks to you. That’s why we moved our money a long time ago from them. And that was fifteen years ago. They were like that back then too.

  28. Das: FAT? NEVER! I use Mr. M.‘s strategy, “Eat everything I want and exercise it off”.

    If there is a shortage of chocolate, I hope they don’t try to dilute the supply (aka: milk chocolate).

    maggiemayday: sorry for the estate problems. We finished up my MIL’s estate in December. The house was easy for us, though. My SIL was nearly homeless, so the house was her share. It was tough working with the lawyer. I don’t wish that on anyone!

  29. @Das and Maggiemayday, you have all my sympathy. That would drive anyone around the bend even once. Multiple times is just cruelty.

    When a local-level doctor’s office kept demanding a $5 payment I’d already made, that tore it. I knew the staff had messed up and weren’t going to fess up. So this is what I did:

    Got the exact name of the office manager (the buck-stops-here person). Sent all my documentation to that person via registered letter with delivery *only* to the person I designated, who had to sign for the physical receipt of the paperwork. Then I had legal proof they were in possession of the documents they needed.

    That made my problems go away. They acknowledged they’d already received the final payment they needed, and the account was paid in full. I spent more than $5 to get the job done, but I wasn’t going to let them jerk me around.

    Don’t know if this will help a little in either of your situations. Am sending prayers also. Keep us updated.

    ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

    Re: BoA, I think if I ever need to do anything major, I’ll poll the blog family before making a move. Together we all know a lot more than just me. Whew…

  30. @ maggiemayday – {{{hugs}}} Looks like we’re in the same frustrating little boat. I’ve been calling and calling WoA today, and I’m not getting through. I have no way of knowing if they received my paperwork, or not. I’m about ready to scream…again. If I get home and there’s another threatening message on the phone I just don’t know what I’ll do…besides eat another freakin’ bar of chocolate!



  31. @Das: Wow, you are going through so much. Don’t you love when the incompetence of others has a direct impact of your life or the people you love? I so understand that. It feels like going up against a giant. Wish I could send you some exclusively delicious chocolate, but I’m reduced to supermarket chocolate as well for now. I send you some awesome hugs and hope the tide changes in your favor soon.

    @Joe: I cannot believe how big Brie has gotten since you last posted pictures of her; Stewie, too. Brie is still Brie though–just poor Stewie gets the brunt of it instead of splitting up among your pack. That was nice that you got together with Fondy (“waves hi to Fondy).

    Alas our “snow” storm was not to be. It was a fine dusting coming out of the sky, but turned to water when it hit the ground. We had ice issues instead this morning, but things are improved this afternoon. Sixty degrees will return by Sunday.

  32. Desperate to know what show it is you’re involved with.

    When will you be able to tell us, and will it be likely to be aired in the UK?

  33. Hey Hoe!
    I figured out what you and Robert are up to !
    You are making the next incarnation of stargate.
    A new network is gong to pick up the show and you to are having to rewrite the “bible” since SYFy owns the rights to it. so it must be rewritten.
    Robert pulled on lasy year because he could see into his crystal magic ball that this was going to happen, so he has been going from netwrok to network pitching the idea since he knew SGU was going to get cancelled.
    Right now you are figuring out how to incorparate SG-1 and atlantis into this whale of a show, plus figuring out how to get the people on Destiny back home .
    You guys have figured if you incorporate all 3 shows into one it will be a huge ratings draw !!!
    So am I halfway right ?
    Actually I had a dream similar to this last night !
    So they say dreams sometimes come true, and here is mine …Wheather I am completely off base or not, I think it is a great idea, and should be considered if you are pitching the franchise to other networks!
    Good luck Joe !

  34. So nice to see little Brie again, she who coud not leap the tiny hedge. It’s nice to see Brie trying to teach Stewie manners, just like Lulu and Jelly tried to teach Brie how to behave.

    I’m craving gnocchi for dinner I’ll toss some tomatoes and chicken keilbasahy over the gnocchi, nothin’ fancy. Now I’m wishing I’d bought some peppadew peppers to add a sweet and sour zing.

  35. Hey, Joe!

    I figured out the new show you & Paul are working on based upon your clues:

    -new show/not a show already airing
    -already has a fan base
    -not a sci-fi show

    …is it CSI:Toronto???

    No, wait! I want to change my answer to… Law&Order: Toronto???

    Wait! Would the new Wonder Woman show be considered sci-fi??

    Okay, I want to change my answer again….

    Dancing with the Toronto Stars?? The Biggest Torontoian?? Kate Plus 8 Canadians??

    The Real World:Canadian Style (featuring u, Paul, Rob, Ivon, a house full of pups, and special guest Carl Binder)

    Am I close???

  36. @You are making the next incarnation of stargate

    I doubt it’s Stargate. Not after the Stargate Universe troubles. I would imagine it being Scifi though, with Joe, Paul and RCC doing Scifi for over a decade of their lives I doubt it’d be something they could give up so easily. They write it well.
    Not butt kissing there, but all 3 of you have made some incredible Stargate episodes in your times. I’m sure that’d translate well to your new show.

  37. Well, in Super Bowl land hell, we got 3-6 inches of snow early Friday morning. Now large chunks of ice are sliding off the Cowboy’s Stadium roof and injuring workers below, one seriously. I think God hates Jerry Jones. This Super Bowl needs to get over with so we can get this 700 pound gorilla off our backs and out of town. It was 73 degrees last Saturday. But this week has been hell bound all the way, and freezing every day. Tomorrow, Saturday, it is suppose to get up to 38. Maybe it will melt away all the ice and snow.

  38. @das and maggiemayday Wow. So sorry that you are each facing such frustrations and consternations. My sympathies and prayers for a good outcome.

    I once worked in commercial banking, but stayed on the friendly customer service side. Although, one episode got dicey when I refused to approve a check be cashed against insufficient funds. As I recall, the man jumped from his car in the drive-up, ran around to the rear of the bank and, cursing mightily, punched though our doors, triggering the alarms. I met the guy at the doorway, wielding a shovel on high, at the ready to defend myself and the lone drive-in young gal teller. The cops came speedily along and hauled him away. I never cashed the darn check either. Yes, that was drama.

    I would not do business with BOFA – ever, for other reasons than stated herein.

    Keeping up good thoughts for the saving of Stargate Universe either in another season pickup on an as yet un-named network, in DVD or other format. Please Lord, let it be.

    And so goes Feb. 4th, another birthday under my belt, so it were.

    Good night all from New Jersey by the shore, please, please, no more snow and ice.

    (or br-r-r cold)

  39. @ hal e. No, I don’t think you’re halfway right, or even a quarter of the way right, sorry. But your effort was, er, somewhat noteworthy.


  40. @ 2cats – What are you talking about? I haven’t worn a coat for the last two weeks, and it was near 60 in Atlantic City this past Wednesday! Of course, I have worn a sweater or two…but we just haven’t had the bad cold along the coast lately. Or maybe I’m just used to it…or too well-insulated. 😛


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