What a great start to my day.  I walked into the production offices this morning to discover THIS tasty-looking treat…

Named Dede. Who had a little surprise for me: an Irish Carbomb Cupcake. Bailey's Irish Cream frosting, chocolate and stout cake, and chocolate and Irish Whiskey ganache. The breakfast of champions!

Another day of spinning.  We’re hoping to send everyone off with one story before we break to write.  We’re averaging about two to two and a half days an episode meaning we’ll be finishing up Alexander’s story late tomorrow – leaving me Friday to spin, break, and board my episode.

The action sequences in this series are going to be a lot bigger, a lot more colorful, and a lot more complicated than your average show.  As a result, we’ve often found ourselves diagramming the choreography in order to explain who does what, where, and how.  Paul suggested we start using props – specifically, some models cars: an Audi, a couple of SUVs, and some sedans (and a red Porsche and beat up Volvo for episode 2).  Anyone know of a good model car shop in the Toronto area?  Alexander took Paul’s suggestion to heart and brought in his own prop – one day late for the episode discussed – and proceeded to use it as a form of therapy throughout the breaking session…

I hadn’t seen him this happy since that time we ate lunch at a diner.

Alexander, Executive Producer by day, fantasy chopper pilot by night.

In addition, to discussing stories, today’s highlights also included some discussion on the etymology of the word “skitters”.  Carl Binder, an apparent expert on the term, traces its roots back to John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath.  To quote from the Nobel Prize Winner’s most critically acclaimed work: “They et green grapes.  They all five got the howlin’ skitters.” And a late afternoon meeting with, oh, everyone in which we talked casting.  I am REALLY looking forward to checking out those audition streams.

Finally, while Jelly and Maximus lazed about the apartment today, Bubba and Lulu attending their first day at doggy daycare.  It wasn’t St. Roch’s School for Gifted Canines, but they seemed to enjoy themselves all the same as evidenced by the pics one of the owners sent my way…

45 thoughts on “March 30, 2011: They et green grapes. They all five got the howlin’ skitters.

  1. The best model shop in Toronto is at Davisville and Mount Pleasant…. at least it was there when I lived there 12 years ago. It could now be a condo building, if you drive there and find it gone at least you can go across the road to “The Longest Yard” for some amazing Wings.

  2. Skitters, eh? Perhaps from:

    “to run rapidly,” 1845, frequentative of skite “to dart, run quickly” (1721), perhaps from a Scandinavian source (cf. Icelandic skjota “to shoot,” or Norw. dialectal skutla “glide rapidly”); related to source of skit.


    Good to see the pups settling in! Now, for papa to settle in, too!

    Btw…my nickname is Dee Dee – and I HATE it. But everyone calls me Dee Dee anyway. It just sounds so…common. Like a tramp, or maybe a teamster. 😉

    Tomorrow (31st) is our 21st wedding anniversary! Woo! Years ago we used to celebrate our anniversary over a fancy dinner at a fine restaurant. And this year? Tonight we went to the diner down the street for their 50% off Wednesday night dinner specials. Either we’re getting really cheap, or really old…or maybe a bit of both. 😛

    Have a good night, Joe!


  3. So when do the dogs get to be together? Bubba and Lulu certainly look like they are having fun, but that makes me feel bad for Jelly and Maximus. And are you sure you’re all getting paid to work? It seems like you are having way too much fun for it to be right for you to be drawing a paycheck. And given the heavy fx and stunts the new show requires, what sort of filming schedule do you anticipate? I realize it’s a tad early to be asking, given you havent even hired a cast yet, but I’m wondering how much pressure you’ll be under time wise.
    thanks for the daily dose and enjoy adapting to the new city and digs.

  4. Skitters? Never heard it. Most of my hick influences were of the excessively stoic variety who would blush to call it “belly trouble” or just grimace at the words “green grapes”, thus avoiding an uncomfortable topic.

    I guess if the roots are with Steinbeck, it doesn’t have hick roots then. It has wordsmithing roots.

    I only found one Transporter movie in my basement. I’m not as hip as I thought I was. I do have AvP, so… apparently, we mostly stopped buying DVD’s when our first kid was born.

  5. Skitters. Sounds like Texan for what my mom use to find in my brother’s underwear on wash day (aka skid marks).

    Oh, now THAT was tacky. 😳

    @ Dee Dee – happy anniversary! 🙂

  6. @das: Happy Anniversary!

    @Joe: An Irish Car Bomb cupcake for breakfast? You really started your day out with a bang!

    Sorry. Anyway, they really sound delicious!

    The pups look pretty happy. And I’ll bet they were really worn out! I hope all of you are settling in a little more and that the housing situation gets resolved soon in a good way.

  7. Good to hear that your dogs are having fun at least. 🙂 Now go out and turn your good day into a twofer. You may consider that an order.

  8. Are any of those casting streams coming from Stargate alumns? You’re bringing on the whole production, so you might as well bring some actors over too, cough**Shanks**cough

  9. Speaking of that flying chopper Alexander has got, too bad they didn’t make a flying remote controlled puddle jumper with mini plastic drones, you and Alex could of had a race or something lol

  10. awwwww, sweet baby pics…Alex and Dede too.
    Happy Anniversary to our DeeDee Das

  11. Happy anniversary Das!!!

    Joe, you sound more chipper, has it anything to do with the tasty dish (the cake… the cake)

    The pugkids look happier too.. good to see they’re not in the uppity audition needed daycare for snobby doggies..

  12. Well, the pups seem happy. Hope they’re all feeling better.

    At least you don’t have to travel this weekend. Best of luck on the house.

    And it’s great to see the gang reforming. Any chance that might include some of the SG1/SGA/SGU cast alum popping into the new series?

  13. Aww, the pups are adorable! Also, it looks remarkably sunny and warm there. I’m a little jealous.

  14. Now, this DeDe person… She seems a lady to be treasured! Love Bailey’s, Irish coffee is delightful, and while I’ve never tried stout I know beer is good in all kinds of batter-type cooking, so a Carbomb Cupcake should be great. (I’d probably look at it more as a dessert than as breakfast, but what do I know?)

  15. RE: the remote control helicopter… it’d be pretty cool with a video camera attached to it. Fly it around the office like that, though gotta have a screen to watch the video while flying the helicopter around of course. heheh

  16. Bubba and Lulu look like they had fun. I especially like the pic with Lulu on the chair. She is the champion!

    Agree with Ponytail. Ick. I think it’s a southern U.S. saying.

    So you guys get to play with cars to figure out the action sequences? How cool is that.

  17. Hey Joe,

    I loved seeing the pups in daycare. Wow…they do look happy. I wish I could see them in person. Sending a squish their way.

    Men and cars…*giggles* sounds like fun. Maybe a remote control car or two would work good. How fun to plan crash, smash, boom, crack, splatt…all for work.

    Best to you and the pups Joe,
    Cheryl 🙂

  18. Nice doggy pictures. 🙂

    Maybe one day if you have time for a mailbag, you could answer my little question… Since there’s not going to be a season 3, will those TJ flashbacks cut from “The Hunt” end up in the season 2 DVD/BR set?

  19. @ DasNdanger: My cousin, Dianne, was called Dee Dee. She hated it too.

    Joe: Why waste money on model cars? Just go to Walmart and pick up some matchbox toy cars. You know, the tiny ones every kid plays with. Save the producers some money and you also won’t have to build them from all those plastic pieces stuck on a plastic frame.

    Once you guys get up and running, it would be thoroughly awesome, if you’d hold an episode writing contest. Have an outside writer or producer like Martin Gero judge the final script so no one can accuse you guys of stealing ideas. I imagine such a move would get so much publicity that your show would be a hit from the start, simply from the attention you’d get.


  20. @Dee Dee and Mr. Dee Dee: Happy Anniversary! 🙂

    Glad to see you’re settling in a little more, or at least, the dogs are! Did you get the old, unfurnished place with the creepy basement?

  21. Joe,
    How are you and Akemi adjusting to Toronto and it’s weather???? I see the Pup’s are doing fine..

  22. @das,, Happy anniversary to you!
    Joe, thanks for the pup pictures,(and to the daycare owner) they do look like they are enjoying their day. Bubba looks like the leader of the pack in the first one. and cute Lulu surveying the situation from a high point. Appears they have some room to move.
    Hope you got the house and are ready to move this weekend.? A good thing you got all the pups, now will feel more like a home. Now you can ship your kitchen stuff and start cooking..yum, and with a new camera, I imagine the pictures will be great.
    Good luck, spin,breaking and boarding(sounds like a sport,hope you win).

  23. The pups have a Raising Hope kind of daycare; do they have also have a ukelele playing dogsitter? Looks like a fun kind of place, and sunny too. Love the sporty bandanas.

    I love the toy cars at the Car and Carriage Museum in Virginia, part of Luray Caverns (caverns and cars, go figure.) I got a red Chevy with white wall tires and fins, with doors that open, just like the kind my dad had when he was a teen. They’ve got pretty much every car ever built in miniature, not too expensive either. If you email them the makes and models they might ship them to you. Did I mention the doors open and close? Very cool, none of that cheap slot car stuff, nice sized sturdy detailed cars.


  24. Thanks, everyone, for the anniversary wishes! We’re celebrating in style – bum style! 😀 Slept in late, and now off to a late breakfast somewhere, and then off to a costume shop to buy Mr. Das a long, white wig…



  25. Das Congratulations!

    Mr. M.: looks like you make a great decision on the doggie day care! I hope they have a geriatric/lower activity section for Jelly.
    How is the house hunting going?

  26. @das.. Happy anniversary. It’s funny though cause this morning (on her way to FL for a program), my daughter called and said “How long have your been married.” “23 years” I said. “I’m sorry,” she responded. LOL. And so it goes.

    On Dee Dee.. get tough. Don’t respond. Or pick some horrible icky name and use it for them til they stop. 🙂

  27. :: I walked into the production offices this morning to discover THIS tasty-looking treat…::::
    The cupcake or the woman? >

  28. @ Debra – On the bright side, Dee Dee is a lot better than a few years ago when my husband took to callin’ me Bubba. 😕


  29. You can get decent model cars at truckstops, even in Canada. Inexpensive, and the big rigs are fun to crash off a table!

    Whew. When I read skitters, I was worried your puppers had ingested inappropriate comestibles, and had redecorated the living room. So glad it was merely literary. They look so happy at the daycare! I feel much better.

    I covet DeDe’s cupcakes. As my friend Genius would say, “I’d like to lick the frosting off her cupcakes.” He’s awfully filthy for a young man, neh?

    @Das … DeeDee implies a wildly indecent, poorly executed, badly spelled tattoo in a location you can’t share with the grandkids. Care to share with us?

  30. LOL, sorry about that “even in Canada”… I only meant the chains and variety of merchandise are different.

    Smack me upside the head!

  31. So I was wondering Joe, when will the hype machine for your new show go into action? Surely the company funding the project would want everyone talking about it before people get casted, you know for publicity and all that.

    I think I’m more excited to hear about this show than I am about Stargate Universe lol

  32. LMAO!!!

    If the green grapes were from Steinbeck’s East of Eden, I could readily tell you what they were (IIRC): Kate’s Circus (aka brothel). . . ponies. . . green goo, and nothing to do with SGU.

    Please give Carl my belated thanks for that Facebook / CIA link on YouTube. I’ve been strongarm – er, make that strongly recommending the vid to anyone I can get a decent headlock on. When genetics sets your height at 5’9″, and you do a lot of push-ups, it’s surprising how many people that covers. Especially when you get on your boots. (U2)

    Prizewinning pooch pics; good to see your kiddos happy/content.

    Also glad to see that things at the studio are getting more upbeat, a tad at a time, and that you yourself are once again in fine form as a funny fellow.

    @Das: Happy Gittin’ Hitched Anniversary! Particularly since no shotguns were involved (on either side. 😉 I mean, it’s not as if New Jersey were Arkansas. . .) – My aunt & uncle are celebrating theirs this Saturday by drinking cheap wine and eating a somewhat dressier version of road kill, with a passel of people they don’t know. I could get into that, given the proper company.

    – possibly spoilerish –

    Joe, I greatly enjoyed “Hope.” Didn’t Carl script that one? Great character studies of the entire Destiny contingent, plus a very trippy/eerie/spooky development with Chloe, Ginn, and Mandy trading places in mid-sentence — and Matt, Eli, and Nicholas getting more desperate by the second. Major props to the actors. – The Volker storyline was quite compelling, and Patrick Gilmore did a wonderful job of bringing the pages to life. Brilliant humorous interlude with the ED comments, and both Greer and Lisa Parks having major fits of the giggles. While watching, I giggled even longer than Parks, and had to back up the DVR to watch one more time, without missing the next scene’s events. *So* funny watching Patrick / Volker trying, but not quite succeeding, at keeping a straight face. One very talented guy, there, with just the right material to sink his actor’s teeth into.

    I’m sure I’ve said plenty as usual, but time does fly when you’re having fun. . . . Anyway, gotta run – has nothing to do with ponies who’ve got the runs. *sticks out tongue* *g*

  33. PS: I hope that Akemi is starting to feel better about things, too. I was sorry to read about her discontent.

  34. @Das: Happy Anniversary!

    @otros ojos: Though born/raised in the Sourland Mountains of NJ, I’m only one generation removed from AR’s pine woods. My NJ home was just a few miles from the famous “Hillbilly Hall” roadhouse and the Charles Lindbergh estate. My point: shotgun ceremonies were just as likely in NJ as AR.

  35. Looks like the doggies are settling in.

    How goes the battle to find a new home??

    Speaking of moving. Mine went surprisingly stressfree. I had two co-workers helping and between the 3 of us we did it over the course of 2 days. Now I can relax and work one more week till my vacation days.

    My big trip: The 2011 Creation Stargate Convention in Burnaby, BC. SO CANNOT WAIT!!!

  36. Hi Joe,

    I know your mind is rightfully on present and future things and not dwelling too much on the past, but a few of us have been chewing over Alliances from last week and were concerned that Gen. O’Neill’s office was right where the Lucian Alliance ship crashed…of course, the fact that Col. Telford and not Jack was in command on-site afterward has only thrown fuel on the fire of our concerns….

    Canonically, did you guys ever nail down a rationale for why Telford and not O’Neill was in charge? Will we learn anything more about the attack on HWC next week? Should we be concerned for Jack’s safety? Or was he off fishing at the cabin…(although given that the alert had gone out that the Lucian Alliance was planning an attack, I can’t see Jack taking a vacation right then….)?

    Anything you can do to put us Jack-fans’ concerns to rest would be greatly appreciated.



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