“Tastes like old taxi driver.” – Akemi on the gazpacho we had at Origin
“Tastes like Santa Claus’s socks.” – Akemi on foie gras.
While in Toronto, we were visiting my elderly aunt when the conversation turned to cell phone plans. Mom, miffed, suggested my sister and I change the topic of conversation to something my Auntie Jeanette could talk about too. We were at a loss. Finally, my aunt: “Let’s talk about coffins.”
An awkward lull and then Akemi piped up: “I like cappuccino!”
“Not coffee,”I informed her. “Coffins.”
Akemi: “What difference?”
Today broke down thusly:
8:00 – 9:00 – Wake up, check my fantasy football waiver wire pick-ups (dropped the disgraceful Cadillac Williams for Dexter McCluster, fumblesome Greg Salas for Tennesse’s Nate Washington, and ineffective Marshawn Lynch for Miami’s Daniel Thomas), shower, walk the dogs, feed the dogs, go over some of the documents for Akemi’s sponsorship. I can’t believe how many forms we need to fill out. I’m convinced our lawyer didn’t tell us for fear we would be discouraged by the veritable mountain of applications, bio requests, and questionnaires.
9:00 – 10:00: Photocopy personal info, print up rare dated photos of Akemi and me (thank goodness for her facebook friends) and then date and offer details on exactly where we were, what we were doing, and who we were doing it with.
Stopped by the gas station to check my tire pressure because the tire pressure warning light went off in my car. Pressure looks okay, but I topped off the tires anyway. Warning light still on. It wouldn’t concern me so much if I didn’t have to drive all the way to Guelph and back tomorrow for Maximus’s anti-cancer vaccine.
Went (ran) to the optometrist and picked up Akemi’s contact lenses. Boring old two-weeks, no violets or teals or those ones that make your pupils enormous.
10:30 – Drop off Jelly at the vet’s for her stem cell treatment. I find it amazing that Peyton Manning has to go all the way to Europe to get a similar treatment while our dogs can get theirs here in North America. With terrific results. My 12 year old pug went from being unable to walk to run-wobbling down carpeted corridors. Thank you, Vet-Stem (Vet-Stem | Dog Arthritis Stem Cell Therapy | Horse Tendon Ligament).
11:00 – Accompany Akemi to her medical (another sponsorship-related hoop). She was extremely nervous about having her blood drawn. Beyond the curtain, I could hear her conversation with the concerned nurse –
Akemi: Will it hurt?
Nurse: I’m not going to lie to you. It may a bit. (Okay make a fist)
Akemi: (unintelligible fretting)
Nurse: Have you heard the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears.
Akemi: Ah. I know Yogi Bear!
1:00 – Down the wire, then a mad dash back downtown for a meeting at the Space offices. They kind of reminded me of the Nickelodeon offices. A nice sit down with Rebecca DiPasquali. They’ve got a lot of interesting shows poised to go. On my out, we ran into Ajay Fry, co-host of the fabulous InnerSPACE. Told him how much I enjoyed the show and thanked him and the gang for doing such a great job of supporting the Stargate franchise for many years.
2:00 – Drop off documents with the lawyer. There, I’m informed that the fingerprint check I endured last week should have actually been for Akemi. On the bright side, I apparently don’t have a criminal record.
2:30 – Meet blog regular Penny for some hot chocolate and chocolates. She’s very sweet. Akemi: “I like her a lot!”.
4:00 -Back home, on the phone with my agents and various other interested parties.
4:30 – Pick up Jelly from the vet clinic. Have to say, we’ll really miss Dr. Juan Elduayen, one of the most knowledgeable and compassionate vets to ever treat my dogs. Thanks to Juan and the rest of the gang at The Front Street Animal Hospital (including Cynthia, Chelsey and hospital mascot Ollie).
Left the vet clinic to discover I got a ticket. And, it was raining.
5:30 – Walk the other three dogs. Following Lulu’s lead, Maximus has adopted the annoying habit of stopping and staring at people until they pay attention to him. Last night, we walk by a couple in the middle of a heated argument. Maximus stops and stares up at the angry blond with his big, soulful eyes. I give him a tug. He responds by lying down, not taking his eyes off the woman until she notices him. The couple stop arguing and spend the next ten minutes fawning over Maximus – and Lulu who quickly seizes the opportunity to shoehorn her way in there as well.
Get waylaid by a surprise phone call on our way to pick up dinner. Akemi grows increasingly miffed as I offer a long line of “No comments”. Finally, we head inside and order oxtail, jerk chicken, and plantain.
6:00 – 6:30 – Dinner. Turn down a crazy trade offer that would have seen me give up Roddy White and Jahvid Best for Jordy Nelson and Shonn Greene. I mean, come on!
7:00 – Start working on my blog.
7:57: Start fielding your mailbag questions.
Dr. D writes: “Have you done or thought about doing a Q&A on Dark Matter?”
Answer: I’ll definitely be doing a Q&A in support of my comic book series Dark Matter (for Dark Horse) after the first issue comes out in January. My editor, Patrick Thorpe, informs me the solicitation for the first issue will appear in the November Previews. Watch for it!
Dr. D also writes: “Do you use or know of any computer programs that help with organizing ideas for writing stories?
Answer: I use a simple beat sheet or outline to organize my story ideas. Other writes I know prefer to use index cards. Sorry, don’t know of any software programs that would help in this regard.
Airelle writes: “Joe how was Max’s dr visit? Is all your packing just about done? Is Akemi excited to go back to Van?”
Answer: Maximus heads in for his next anti-cancer vaccine tomorrow. Far from finished packing. And, yes, Akemi is very excited to head back to Van. First stop: Bella Gelateria.
BMc writes: “Joe, is the outline for the Tara Yelland Project done yet?”
Answer: No way. This isn’t your run-of-the-mill network pilot. This is the Tara Yelland Project! Not something I can just dash off in a couple of months.
kabra writes: “I’m back, well never really left, I had been periodically reading your blog, just been so stressed and too busy to reply to anything, BUT now I have quit my abusive job!!!”
Answer: Congrats (I hope)! Life’s Too Short!
Mike Ferguson writes: “The reason I’m writing is because I recently graduated and am looking to take my next step. I would appreciate any advice you might have for someone wanting to get into the television industry. I have considered moving to be in a better location for work, but was curious about which city might be the best place ‘to be’, in your opinion. LA, Vancouver, or somewhere else?”
Answer: Best location? LA by far. Head down, get an agent, start making connections.
Mike Ferguson writes: “I recall you mentioning that writing for animation was a good way to get into the writing scene, but I’m not sure where to start.”
Answer: Do a little research. Check out some Saturday morning television and take note of the production studios. Contact them about writing opportunities on their various shows. Have some writing samples standing by and ready to show.
Duptiang. writes: “The food looks great, but sounds so different. It is not something I would knowingly order, except the macaroons. Ever think of setting up some sort of food tour?”
Answer: Would love to lead a Vancouver (or Tokyo) food tour. Who’s in?
8:14 – Head down to the gym after being guilted by Akemi, realize Survivor is on and gripe about missing it, head back to the gas station and check the air pressure in all four tires, notice the tire pressure warning light is still on (Akemi: “Maybe if we drive like this tomorrow we will be passed away.”), walk all four dogs at once.
9:36 – Resume answering mailbag questions…
Lloyd67 writes: “Do you know what the staff are doing Stargate since the end of the series?”
Answer: Some. Writer/Exec. Producer Carl Binder is finishing work on Transporter. Exec. Producers Brad Wright and Robert Cooper are back on the west coast, working on their own projects. Writer/Supervising Producer Alan McCullough is about to start a gig on Lost Girl. Alex Levine is working on Flashpoint. Martin Gero and Jewel Staite are working on Highland Gardens.
Penny writes: “What will Carl be up to after Friday? Is he heading also to Vancouver or elsewhere?”
Answer: Carl is homeward bound – not BC but California.
Sylvia writes: “Great story about the meds. and Auntie Jeanette looks much more spry than I do and I’m quite a bit younger. hmmmm. And, what is the secret of her youth and energy?”
Answer: Eating sensibly, walking every day, and bathing in the blood of twenty virgins.
JeffW writes: “So how did the Snowmonkies do?”
Answer: Sadly, my Snow Monkeys lost. Their record now stands at 1-1. We bounce back this weekend against the Autodrafts.
DP writes: “Have you tried buckeyes yet?”
Answer: Not yet. It’s on my list of things to do along with my quarterly tax installment and “be a better person”.
Duptiang. writes: “Joe, I remember watching the out takes for from Morpheous from the DVD. It was a fine spooky show. Claudia is a fabulously and funny actress. I loved her off handed dark comic work in Farscape. However, I never understood the design with the Chem Suits. The head piece just seemed to be poor design, to include the internal lights. I would have thought they would have washed out the vision of the actors.”
Answer: Those internal lights were an issue throughout the franchise run. While they didn’t make sense dramatically, they did serve a purpose from a production standpoint: illuminating our actors’ faces and in some cases countering the wash-out effects of the reflective exterior lights. And we weren’t the only ones guilty of this. You’ll notice similar interior lights in many movie space and hazmat suits.
Nancy Bienville writes: “Then I find out The Stargate Series has been completely canceled… With that being said, and putting my emotions on the shelf for a minute, I want to thank you and everyone who worked on the show to make it what it was…..”
Answer: Much appreciated.
maggiemayday writes: “Oooh, cufflinks. Do they give you super-powers?”
Answer: Not sure. I plan to test my flying ability this weekend. Wish me luck!