Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Running round all day going nowhere much in LA

the I405 in LA is so called because you go at 4 or 5 miles an hour. Flogging up and down variouus highways getting kit, trying to sort out phone and money, picking up the second unit crew, upgrading to a bigger car, flog flog flog, a bigger car without satnav. LA with no Satnav? I don't think so. Today was meant to be a readjusting day off, but it was just a day of LA flog. We went to take the crew to their hotel in Burbank, but got the wrong Olive Street, in Downtown LA. Bad. Pain in the ass, cracky crack town bad.

Tom must've been so hungry, I bought him cereals in bed this morning - me, Tom and Will are sleeping in my mate Mamaly's spare room, with me and Will on two Aero beds on the floor. Will and Mamaly described it as a refugee camp tonight, and I bet Tom was hoping for some food parcels earlier on. When we realised we'd gone to the wrong Olive Street, I started wigging out. It was going to be at least 45 mins to an hour before we found the right Olive; so I ordered Will to stop at Burger King and get a whopper and fries down Tom.

Before we left we got all the people who know Tom best to write us lists of dos and donts with Tom, things we should definitely avoid if we want him to feel comfortable and happy. We might as well have eaten them on the drive to Mamaly's last night, instead of the big bag of cheesy puffs and turkey sandwich we bought from the Mexican supermarket on the airport road.

Will just doesn't think about Tom's wellbeing in the same way that I do. In a way its good, he just expects and knows Tom can just rub along with us; I meanwhile, am in a frenzied state of trying, and the trying aspect of this sentence is key, to make things nice and easy for him.

Still, I am realising that Tom can handle a lot. Today I had a real major bastard bank issue; two calls to UK to switch of the fraud alert, about 20 false starts at the cashpoint; not able to get car out of car park without cash. Grrrrrrrrr! I ended up losing my rag on the phone to the bank (I pay nearly £20 a month for that account, Royal Bank of Scotland run by a bunch of fleecing criminals if you ask me) and could sense that Tom was getting really anxious. But even though it went outside his natural F-X instincts to stay super calm and sort of happy, he did. I said I was really sorry, he picks up other people's stress so easily, for being stressy and he said, 'It's alright'.

Still, it's been an odd day for Tom. A dinner with my friend and his girlfriend, he say quietly, kind of shy, and certainly feeling a bit outside, but also self-possessed enough to ask for coffee at the end of dinner. I was determined to make him a proper meal tonight, rice, pork, some vegetables. I will feed my brother properly, and I he will have a nice time.

After the hairy downtown interlude we took the second unit to their motel and they sat inside talking about cameras and I fucked off with Tom and we went and sat in a neighbourhood sushi bar, Tom had a fresh lemonade, even though he wanted a proper British cup of tea, and I had green tea. Tom's face was a bit tense and alarmed, but after a few minutes he relaxed and we talked about Metallica for, oooh, around 45 minutes.

The great news is that the Metallica machine seems very open to us. And as we try and sort access to venues and wotnot, they couldn't be more decent and friendly to us.

The truth is, the more they appear to warm to the project the more I fear that when the time comes Tom simply won't have the right stuff to grab it. Is it really important that he does? Is talking about it simply enough?

No, I don't think that's true, he has not stopped talking about Lars for, umm, like forever. He gets so excited when he talks about him, genuine excitement. We are already rehearsing what we are going to say to him when we meet. Tom's latest thing is to get a drum lesson from Lars, I can just imagine how much he will enjoy that.

This isn't particularly fun, I have to say. And Will and I are certainly going to scrap on and off a lot of the time, but it is worth it.

Hell yeah. Tom deserves this.


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