lights, camera, inaction.


i went to kent today to help my boss and some fools film an instructional dvd. and by "help" i mean i sat around all day and ate as much free food as i could. they seriously didn't need me around to do anything. originally, i had been asked to come along because they needed a male to play a divorced litigant, even though the judge really wanted an african-american to play the part. she was concerned about diversity, and though a filipino (myself) was good, an african-american would be better. so, come showtime, i didn't get the part. but guess who beat me to it? another fucking filipino! he looked older, though, so it made sense. as fun as it had sounded, i don't think i was ready yet to have an ex-wife.

i sat in the halls mostly, not reading, not listening to music. it occurred to me at some point during the day that i really need to get my shit together, figure out what i'm gonna do, or else i'm headed straight for much of the same. i once talked to naomi about the movie jarhead. i explained how i really felt for the main character in that one scene where he and his buddy want to snipe an iraqi, but they're beaten to the punch by some higher-up. they beg the higher-up to get the shot off. it won't matter if they do or don't because the army was planning to bomb the shit out of the complex anyway. in the end, the higher-up tells them no, and the two throw a little hissyfit over it. i told naomi that that scene summed up my entire volunteer experience. all that training, all that determination, and for what? they wouldn't even let me get the shot off.

so, i sat in the halls and struck up conversations with the filming crew, the law students that coordinated the whole project. i thought about talking with random jurors, too, but i didn't. sucks to have jury duty, i might say. how's it in there? anything good? murder? drug bust? i've been watching quite a bit of the wire lately. i was pretty curious, mostly because i was so bored. i asked my boss about bail. like why do they even make bail an option, if only rich assholes can afford it? i asked her how much it cost to file for divorce. $200 was the answer, but it could've gone up. what's the difference between a restraining order and a protection order?

sometimes, the questions came back at me. "are you interested in law?" a 3l asked me. "no," i said. my boss looked disappointed, and everyone else within earshot laughed. i felt bad for saying so bluntly that i wasn't interested, so i tried to qualify my answer. "well, it's interesting," i said, "but i don't see myself going to law school any time soon." "yeah," she said, "and being around us students probably doesn't convince you any." "yeah," i said, "i can't wait until finals." the truth is, if i did go, i wouldn't be able to stop thinking: i'm in the business of people fucking each other over.

from the second floor, i watched jurors return from lunch. the room was circular, and i couldn't help but think of dante's inferno. i didn't tell anyone i was thinking this. then some lawyer types walked past us, and they were holding a door. upon closer inspection, i saw that there were bulletholes in the door. "that's evidence," my boss said. "are those bulletholes?" i asked. "yeah," she said. "i guess court can be exciting!" i said. she laughed.

my favorite part of the day was when the director said he needed to film ambient sounds, so we all sat silent for thirty seconds. it was the greatest thirty seconds there ever was.

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