onlyyyFri Jul 03,
Posted by Hal
So yesterday the entire film crew came over, plus a few extra hands to work on making my basement look space age. We spent the morning setting things up and then filming me watching reality tv while director Sally lobbed questions on me. Then we had a serious on camera chat about what the hell I thought I was up to. I was much more relaxed and focussed then I’d been in the previous shoots, done before book tour. There’s nothing more stressful for a writer then the days right before their book is coming out. Now that the book is out and finding readers, I’m more relaxed and can focus on the documentary. So for the record, the reality tv clips we watched were from Moment of Truth, Cops, a Canadian show about women with money problems, and a British show called You Are What You Eat. That last show was particularly hilarious — it depicted a family of massive boozers who subsist almost entirely on take-always. Unlike wimpy North American reality tv, the “holistic nutritionist” brought in to counsel them wasted no time. You people are disgusting, she told them over and over again.
During lunch I squabbled with producer Jeannette about the schedule (I have to fly to Washington DC to do a night of storytelling I’m really excited about – unfortunately it’s in the middle of our trip to LA to go to reality tv boot camp [which I’m also really excited about], more on both of these subjects later on). Then it was back to my place, where a fellow named Carl arrived to install the surveillance cameras. Unfortunately, once again, I couldn’t help noticing that the surveillance cameras, which will be going live to broadcast the interior of my house to the web in about 10 days time, were not actually being installed. Carl turned out to be a handyman Jeanette had used around her house. He did drill some holes and install some camera bases, but it wasn’t quite the same as having someone come from Surveillance Cam Inc., especially when Carl started hamming it up and trying to “act” all official.
Nevertheless, we moved through the living room into the kitchen and decided where we should put the cameras. We had them hooked up to a monitor so I could actually see how much of each room they’d catch. I got pretty excited when we moved into the kitchen — I’m planning on having a daily cooking with Hal hour! Other plans I cooked up while the doc crew captured Carl pretending to install the cameras: story time with Hal (Hal tells stories from his checkered past), sing along with Hal song time (Hal plays guitar and makes a racket), and last but not least — chat time with special guest Orie (Hal’s brother calls and berates him for a minimum of ten minutes daily). Awesome! Why am I getting excited about this? My inner peep is emerging – scary.
My excitement dampened when we moved into the basement bathroom. The newly dubbed Can-Cam was being positioned by Carl and I suggested that maybe we should go for a kind of waist-up only vibe. Sally immediately chimed in — “But that’s what this is all about isn’t it? Challenging yourself to go further then you want, moving out of your comfort zone!” I didn’t want to be seen wimping out on the first day, so I assented to have the camera positioned in a way that would show everything to everyone. I mean, what the hell, right? Or wrong? I don’t know how I feel about it, really. Partly it’s just kind of stupid – does anybody really want to see me going to the bathroom? Well, I guess we’re going to find out.
Gotta run, today’s shoot is just about to get going. More soon.
Hey, I’m Hal Niedzviecki. I’m a writer/thinker who lives in Toronto, Ontario, Canada with my wife and daughter. Up till now I’ve always considered myself a private person. But at the same time I’m fascinated by people who effortlessly open themselves up to the whole world. So I’ve… more...
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