THU. JULY 1/2004 (DOMINION DAY)/04:57 E.S.T.

I hope that you are all having a damaging Dominion Day!
      Yesterday afternoon, we assembled for a pre-production meeting that included specimens of the FSQ™ TORONTO TREK 18 materials & other things. The plans for the FSQ™ panel have me all a-tingle, so I hope that the convention patrons are as thrilled by what we have scheduled for them as I am.
     GAZ also presented us with the completed script for the FSQ™ episode titled "PAX ROMANA", which I had been anticipating with some eagerness, on the basis of its title, alone. More on that later.
      A bonus was the pilot script for a new miniseries that GAZ wishes to pitch, but I shall post more about that once I have read it, since the bulk of my energy & concentration is going toward this weekend.


TUE. JUNE 29/2004/16:47 E.S.T.

GAZ got me on the blower this morning to inform me of his plans for our presentation @ TORONTO TREK 18, but I am sworn to secrecy, due to his fear that we shall be turning people away from the doors already, as a result of the heavy demand for the exclusive material that will be given to those TORONTO TREK patrons who shall be in attendance.
All I can say on the matter is that I now know how MR. STAN "THE MAN" LEE must have felt whenever he wrote STAN'S SOAPBOX, dying to tell the Friends Of Ol' MARVEL™ what he knew, but prevented from doing so by professional obligation.


SAT. JUNE 26/2004/12:54 E.S.T.

An FSQ™ interview conducted by MR. ALAN ANDERTON of U.S.S. MAGELLAN can be found on Page 12 of THE TRICORDER™ VOL. 1, #7.
I was especially pleased to see that the article included a photograph of some leather armour crafted by SWORD IN THE STONE CRAFTS™, who shall be present in the dealers' room @ TORONTO TREK I8, next week.


FRI. JUNE 25/2004/20:24 E.S.T.

The online demo' reel that was being hosted for me had to be taken down, as an astonishing 2.5 gigabytes of traffic had been drawn to it inside of only 12h, which exceeded the host's monthly traffic quota!


SAT. JUNE 19/2004/20:18 E.S.T.

I just received the proofs of an interview I did to promote FSQ™, & while the font was too small to read comfortably, it was laid out in an aesthetically pleasing manner, with a photographic selection that was both original & flattering.
When the finished article is made available to me, I shall share it with you immediately that I receive it.


WED. JUNE 16/2004/21:29 E.S.T.

I was contacted a few minutes ago by the representative of a major NYC convention who told me that he is "sick of having the same 3 STAR WARS™ guests all the time", & that he would like for me to be a guest @ his event, provisional upon the confirmation of a Broadcast Agreement.

This means that if we are in a position to provide an exclusive viewing of an episode in advance of the series being shown anywhere, or if the series begins airing prior to a scheduled event, his "boss" will be persuaded that he is "justified" in adding me to his budget.

He also said that if I "happen to be in NYC on other business" between now & SEP. 2004, that I should contact him about the possibility of my being added to the roster as "advance promotion for the show". My involvement with LA FEMME NIKITA™ was of great interest to him, since he is a fan of that series.

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

THU. MAY 27/2004

Today the FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™ Email Newsgroup came online, in response to the barrage of questions about the show from SF fandom.

The timing is excellent because we shall be interviewing a possible producer for Season 1 tomorrow, to discuss whether she has any interest in coming aboard for the series.

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

TUE. MAY 25/2004/19:17 E.S.T.

We're currently in negotiation about FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™ to determine whether its prequel/pilot will debut @ TORONTO TREK 18 (FRI. JULY 2 - SUN. JULY 4/2004) in Canada.

If Post-Production continues to remain on schedule, then this will likely be the case.

If not, however, then there will be some other form of exclusive promotional materials made available to those conventioneers who attend.

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

SUN. JAN. 18/2004/09:00

(Posted: Wed Feb 11, 2004 7:51 pm - Subject: FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™: "SHUTTLE DOWN" Day 3)

The day was a relatively leisurely 1 for me, as we shot some stills for the promo poster, as well as some SFX.

I was impressed by how readily the lighting conditions of frozen Lake Huron were replicated in the studio, & defy anyone to tell with their NAKED EYES™ just where Nature ends & Technology begins.

I was there, & I found myself utterly convinced of what I was seeing!

The most difficult part of the shoot was sustaining a squatting crouch, as my thighs quivered with fond remembrance of other situations, but also with mild protest @ what they were being asked to do in the present.

Once the session was completed, I doffed my costume, was wrapped for the day, then driven home by 15:00.

The remainder of the day was spent familiarising myself with the script, then reading the latest issues of THE PUNISHER™ (MARVEL KNIGHTS™ vintage) by MESSRS. GARTH ENNIS & STEVE DILLON.

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

SAT. JAN. 17/2004

(Posted: Sun Feb 08, 2004 10:56 pm - Subject: FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™: "SHUTTLE DOWN" Day 2 of Filming)

I was awakened, then performed my daily ablutions, despite ice-cold water.

Fortunately, I began reading the works of MR. IAN LANCASTER FLEMING @ age 12, so I had taken to emulating my idol, CAPTAIN JAMES BOND 007™, who always takes cold showers immediately prior to a shower as hot as he can stand.

Thereafter, I donned what our Exec. Prod. refers to as my "black leather exoskeleton", including boots & gloves, then ascended the stairs to breakfast.

I was informed that due to displeasure @ how "fake-looking" the outdoor footage had turned out, we would be returning to Toronto after shooting some pick-up shots for inserts with planned rewrites.

Apparently, GARY & ROBERT felt that after viewing the rushes, the final effect had been such that "We might as well have shot it on a soundstage in Toronto!" & that for all that we had undergone to get the footage, there was no further percentage in completing the shoot @ that location.

He really did not like the cold, & mentioned frequently that the next script would be set in Turks & Caicos if I absolutely *insisted* on shooting on location.

I balked @ cereal for breakfast due to my aversion to Lactonite™ poisoning, choosing instead to have an energy bar that was laced with chocolate chips. However, I did not eat it until 3 days after our return to Toronto, pocketing it instead.

We packed our respective gear in preparation for the journey to come, then bid adieu to what GAZ, TRUDIE & ROBERT had dubbed The Ice Hotel™.

We mobilised back to the location on the surface of Lake Huron where the snow shelter remained.

There, TRUDIE suggested several changes that made the shoot more efficient & improved visual storytelling; we shot until approx. 12:00, then mobilised by 12:15.

On 1 hand, I had hoped to shoot more footage, including my stuntwork, but on the other, I was glad to be returning, as it meant that I would have an opportunity to attend a TORONTO TREK™ gathering later that evening.

we stopped for lunch @ a motorway plexmall that had WENDY'S™, TIM HORTON'S™, et cetera, where I fed upon the spicy chicken sandwich meal, complemented by an additional order of their Biggie Fries™, for I knew that I required only the salty snack food group to take the edge off my hunger, & that I would want animal flesh before arriving back in Toronto.

Since it was unlikely that we would stop anywhere again until we reached our destination, I thought it best, as we took on additional diesel fuel immediately that we finished taking sustenance, circa 16:15.

We arrived back in Toronto, by which time I was invited to GARY'S home to view that day's rushes & stay the evening in order to discuss the next leg of the shooting schedule.

By this time, transprovincial travel had made me lethargic, so I decided against attending TORONTO TREK'S™ gathering, which I had not expected to be able to attend anyway, since the original shooting schedule had extended into Sunday.

The most efficacious way for me to optimise my travel plans would have necessitated my carrying luggage into a crowded, smoky environment.

If I had no luggage, & the road arteries were not clogged with snow, then I would have gone gladly, for I craved 2 pints of BODDINGTON'S™ by that point! ;)

I took the opportunity to bathe while GARY & TRUDIE left to take care of matters pertinent to transportation. Rather hot water, this time!

We viewed the rushes & it was decided that in order to optimise the remaining time available to us on Sunday, we would shoot some stills in the studio.

We viewed the first 3 episodes of Season 1 of THE OFFICE™, which made me laugh quite hard.
Anyone who has ever worked in that environment would recognise himself/herself immediately, which works in the programme's favour, as one is afforded the opportunity to witness "oneself" interacting with colleagues & nemeses.

I read several more chapters of THE REAL BRAVO TWO ZERO™ by MR. MICHAEL ASHER, flossed & brushed my teeth, then went to bed.

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

FRI. JAN. 16/2004/12:00

(Posted: Wed Feb 04, 2004 12:01 am -Subject: FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™: "SHUTTLE DOWN" 1st Day of Filming)

After breakfast, we travelled to Lake Huron, where GAZ supervised construction of the shuttle set after assigning me to dig the crash site furrow, then to build a snow shelter.

As I did this, I rehearsed dialogue which was especially pertinent to that activity.

We were shooting on the frozen surface of Lake Huron itself, so there was a dark layer of ice beneath snow that was comprised of fluffy flakes, but quite deep, so it was a challenge to get them to pack adequately.

This necessitated the transmigration of snow from the sandy shore in order to effect the needed construction, a task which caused me to lose all feeling in my hands from keeping them clutched about the snowshovel.

This in turn required that I not dig too deeply, lest I disturb the still-unfrozen sand beneath, thereby contaminating the shot & weakening the integrity of the walls.

Once I was finished with that, I offered my assistance to the construction of the shuttle set, which became arduous because the temperature dropped still further & the wind picked up, threatening @ times to take the entire assembly off toward the unfrozen part of Lake Huron, which would have meant curtains!

The first shot of the day was of FINN emerging from the shuttle, which ended up with me landing facedown in the snow as my right foot slipped on the ice inside the set.

In true Method Director fashion, ROBERT MacMANUS shouted that I should "Keep going, use that," while my own main concern was not my welfare, but whether I had inadvertently damaged the set with my foot.

I have taken far worse-looking tumbles in my stuntwork & for recreation when tobogganing, jumping ramps, et cetera, so I was determined to continue acting unless I heard "CUT!"

Next, we shot the sequence wherein FINN extracts another character from the shuttle to place him inside the snow shelter, as well as various other shots pertinent to specific properties prior to & after that scene, including lots of footage of the barren snowscape.

As the temperature continued to drop, the wind became even harsher, which made the shot look good with snow blowing horizontally across the lens, but made it difficult for me to receive direction clearly.

This led to my not carrying out certain specific tasks in the order that I should have done them, or doing them later than I was supposed to do them, or sooner than I was supposed to do them, or, WHAT YOU WILL.

I am not a Method Actor, but I am a great admirer of the work that comes out of the physical hardships visited upon the late MR. RICHARD HARRIS in MAN IN THE WILDERNESS™, A MAN CALLED HORSE™ & other pictures, so I revelled in the fact that I was not required to pretend that my arms were sore from digging, or that I was cold, or that I was anxious not to make any mistakes, since we were literally in an environment that was actively attempting to make us die.

I fully expected to encounter Polar Bears & Arctic Foxes, but that may have been due to the trauma I suffered while viewing a SIR SEAN CONNERY film titled THE RED TENT™ in 1976! ;)

We struck the set @ 17:45, with the intention of rebuilding it elsewhere to shoot the interiors, @ a location that was less hostile to clear communication, & relatively warmer because of enclosure by trees that would serve as a windbreak.

I had hoped that we would film the stunt sequences that day, also, but GAZ felt that we had "suffered enough for 1 day" & ROBERT agreed.

When we arrived back @ the cottage, I was invited to view the dailies while we ate the hearty chicken/rice stew that TRUDIE had prepared for us.

This impressed upon me that my responsibilities are greater now than they had been before with other filmed projects, since my own opinion about the quality of the footage was being sought after.

I was thrilled by what we saw, particularly how solid & real the shuttle set looked on camera, & how welcoming the snow shelter looked.

I now have an even deeper respect for the Inuit & their way of life than ever before!

Once we finished viewing the dailies, we watched THE BIG LEBOWSKI™, a film that the others had seen several times already, but which I had not yet got around to, as THE MAN WHO WASN'T THERE™ hadn't thrilled me overmuch when I saw it in Calgary @ the cinema.

Once again, my man MR. JEFF BRIDGES turned in a seamless performance that made me entirely sympathetic to his character & the plight in which he found himself, just as he had done when I saw him in MR. JOHN CARPENTER'S STARMAN™.

The day concluded for me with a bag of salty snacks, a tin of SLEEMAN'S™ beer & a bottle of COCA-COLA™ which I consumed while reading further exploits in THE REAL BRAVO TWO ZERO™ by MICHAEL ASHER.

The difference this time was that I felt the cold that was being described in the book more keenly than I had when reading BRAVO TWO ZERO™ by SGT. ANDY McNAB.

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

THU. JAN. 15/2004/12:15

(Posted: Sun Jan 25, 2004 9:01 pm - Subject: FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™: "SHUTTLE DOWN" Travel Day)

The night before, I had encountered difficulty sleeping as my thoughts were still very much on THE MINI-MOGGY™, so I had attempted to clear & focus my mind by studying the script until approx. 03:40, despite the fact that I knew I would be roused from sleep circa 08:00/08:30.

Consequently, I found myself in the state of rationalisation that arises from sleep deprivation, choosing not to shave, that I might gain additional time in horizontal attitude.

@ approx. 09:00, we commenced loading the set into the U-HAUL™ cube van that had been hired for the occasion.

This was made more of a challenge by the freight lift, whose ground floor exit was strewn variously with snowblower, office furniture, et cetera.

Since we had loaded the lift to its fullest capacity before descending, this made for an exercise in Physics when we sought to offload with the intent of returning to the 10th floor for more materials, luggage, et cetera.

The cold that greeted us @ ground level was so pervasive that I fancied I felt my lungs crystallising with each inhalation.

("Still…You Turn Me On"!)

When I was dressing that morning, I wondered whether I had overpacked in my paranoia about the cold we would encounter, but I was vindicated in full for electing to don nothing less than a T-shirt, sweatshirt, turtleneck & combat sweater under my MANCHESTER CITY Football Club™ scarf, 3/4 length leather coat, thermal undertogs, leather trousers, woollen hat, black leather jackboots & leather gloves, complemented by dark aviator's glasses to protect my eyes from the blazing solar radiation.

Our scheduled departure for Port Franks (on the shore of frozen Lake Huron, the 2nd largest freshwater body in Canada, if not the world!) had been 10:00, but as I predicted, we did not leave then.

Regardless of how well-planned such an undertaking is, there are always unforeseen eventualities that crop up "on the day", particularly when the Technical Personnel are doing double/triple duty in order to keep Production costs down.

The trip on the motorway was an adventure, since it snowed quite heavily once we left the Greater Toronto Area, non-stop, all the way to Port Franks.

Along the way, we had stopped to collect the keys to the cottage in which we would be billeted for the weekend, & to take sustenance for the remainder of the journey.

I chose a packet of Ready Salted crisps, an AERO™, a BOUNTY™, & a bottle of transparent Cream Soda.

GARY DAVIDSON said that I ate like a bird - the avian variety, not the female variety! ;)

The cottage's owner had a substantial collection of antique dolls which were all over her house, stored in showcases that I coveted immediately for my own collection of THE PUNISHER™ memorabilia, ACTION MAN™, G.I. JOE™, et cetera.

The weather worsened as we continued, & GAZ'S cellular 'phone rang, only to tell him that our Director of Photography's radiator had blown out in Wyoming, Ontario, & that he was to be stuck there for an indefinite period of time as he waited for it to be replaced, since it was beyond repair.

I had not known there was a Wyoming anywhere other than in The U.S.A.

Upon arrival in Port Franks, circa 18:00, we shopped for the weekend's provisions.

I was asked what I should like to have for breakfast, to which I replied:

"Cheese & tomato sandwiches, please."

"That's not breakfast food! What about cereal or something?"

"I always have cheese & tomato sandwiches for breakfast on a shoot."

"What kind of bread do you like?"

"Bread as black as The Devil's™ own heart, if you please!"

"They're out of Dark Rye. Malt bread suit you?"

"I've never had it before, but it looks good & moist, so I'll give it a go, yeah, thanks."

We arrived @ the cottage only to find that its driveway was completely snowed in, a condition exacerbated by that day's snowploughing, which had built up a levee that any irrigational ditch-digger would have been proud to call his own, no less than 18" deep.

Also, the driveway was situated @ the brow of a hill, with a "STOP" sign directly across from it, which made parking an ordeal for our driver.

I volunteered to shovel the snow, so that we could get into the chalet more quickly, so as to prevent the vehicle from being ticketed for unlawful parking.

As I shovelled, going over my dialogue aloud, GAZ & TRUDIE (Producer) forded the deep snow into the chalet, where they discovered that not only had the heat not been turned on in advance of our arrival, but that a window & door had been left wide open, thereby allowing snow to blow inside, coating the walls, windows & doors in ice.

There was also a puddle of water in the lower living area that was the result of a burst water pipe that was cascading from the ceiling, causing a dank, musty odour to pervade the place.

GAZ joined me to assist with the shovelling, @ which point he briefed me about the situation.

He also rang the Director of Photography, telling him not to bother carrying on in the blizzard, that once his radiator had been repaired, he should turn around & go back home, since the conditions were so inhospitable.

I was impressed by his GENERAL PATTON-like willingness to muck in with the rest of us, & readiness to make executive decisions that were beneficial to his employees.

Periodically, I would speak some of my dialogue, which caused him to ask what I had just said.
It happened enough times that it became quite comical, like a LAUREL & HARDY routine.

Once we had cleared away an area that was deep enough to allow the van to park without its bonnet invading the road, we began offloading the provisions & luggage.

As I entered the chalet with my burdens, TRUDIE would ask me what I had just said, this again in response to my going over dialogue.

I wondered whether circumstances like these had been the origins of some classic MACK SENNETT Comedy routines, for it happened each & every time I re-entered the chalet as she, on hands & knees, did her best to stem the deluge & clean up the place.

Later, I learned that TRUDIE had slipped on the lowermost step when first she had entered the chalet, on her way upstairs to inspect the remainder of the premises, @ which time she had hurt herself quite badly, so it was even more remarkable that she was willing & able to perform such menial tasks, for she limped quite badly for the remainder of the shoot.

Once we had finished our respective tasks, I lit fires upstairs & downstairs, which went some way toward boosting morale.

There had been some concern, as the 2 large boxes of matches on the upper mantelpiece were quite sodden, due to the blowing snow.

Fortunately, however, I had done a preliminary reconnaissance of the lower level, where I had found a bone-dry book of matches among the VHS collection, which boasted some very good Sandal Epics, not least of which were: THE ROBE™, DEMETRIUS & THE GLADIATORS™, DAVID & BATHSHEBA™, BARABBAS™, QUO VADIS?™ & SALOME™, as well as a host of others, some of which I own, most of which I do not.

I am a great admirer of such fare, & have been since I was a boy, watching them on BBC 1™ during the High Holy Days™.

GAZ assigned me an upper bedroom that had reliable heating, adjacent to his own, but I demurred when I found that the beds were covered in animal fur that I could not identify, choosing instead to sleep in the lower bedroom, which, although colder, was fur-free, equipped with an en-suite sink, & directly across from a bathroom.

…Unfortunately, however, the plumbing did not work, owing to the difficulties described above!

Meanwhile, TRUDIE had prepared a hearty peasant-style chili that warmed our bones before we retired for the night.

I made sure to sleep in the clean, dry togs I had packed for that purpose, but found that even inside my Arctic-rated Queen-size sleeping bag, it was necessary for me to keep my hat & black thermal socks on, otherwise I could not sleep, as there was a strong draught which issued from the window.

I read my script again, then read a couple of chapters from THE REAL BRAVO TWO ZERO™ by MICHAEL ASHER, before finally extinguishing the light & visiting the realm of MORPHEUS THE SANDMAN™.

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

WED. JAN. 14/2004

(Posted: Mon Jan 19, 2004 6:57 pm - Subject: FSQ™ TRAVEL PREPARATIONS)

It had been my intent to attend a reading of CLOTHAR THE FRANK™ by MR. JACK L. WHYTE this evening, but my plans were balked by LACHESIS, ATROPOS & CLOTHO.

Executive Producer GARY DAVIDSON contacted me with concerns about weather, so he wanted me to travel to his home for the purpose of staying @ his dwelling, that we might travel together on the morrow.

My feline familiar had grown ill over the preceding 24h, vomiting blood & bile.

She was the runt of the litter, macrocephalic, so I had called her THE MINI-MOGGY™, despite the fact that her owners had named her TINY.

Throughout her short life (less than 2 years), she had been prone to spontaneous vomiting, & had to eat kitten food, so I had been psychologically prepared for her demise for some time, & when she took this turn for the worst, I knew that she was preparing to shuffle off this mortal coil, so I could not in good conscience leave her to attend MR. WHYTE'S reading.

She went blind, lapsed into coma, then expired as I packed to leave for my rendezvous.

I had wanted to snap her neck long before this, but her owners had not come to terms with her condition as I had, hoping against hope that she would recover.

When it became clear to them that this was not going to happen, I was authorised to "take care of it", but by the time I reached her, she was quite gone.

I disposed of her before departure, noting that she weighed more in death than she had done @ the peak of health.

I exited the building, then re-read my script for "SHUTTLE DOWN" on the journey.

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

Posted: Sat Jan 10, 2004 4:22 pm

I had dinner @ the home of our Executive Producer, GARY DAVIDSON, last Monday evening, @ which time I was issued the shooting schedule for the pilot episode of FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™, titled "SHUTTLE DOWN".

Prior to this, he & I toured the workshop where the set is being built, & I was gobsmacked @ the precision of execution as compared to the design drawings: utterly faithful!

The various properties are quite excellent, also, & I shall be making a point of taking lots of photographs as the series progresses, lest the hard work being done should go undocumented elsewhere. (Unlikely, but one never knows, @ this stage of the game!)

I also consulted with the Director, ROBERT MacMANUS, who was very receptive to some dramaturgical concerns I had which arose from the Diction of my character, each of which was resolved to our mutual satisfaction, & with the blessing of GARY DAVIDSON, who was also present.


On Thursday evening, it was pointed out to me that because of the heavy weather we are likely to encounter while shooting in The Canadian Shield, we might have to depart from Toronto a day earlier than originally scheduled.

Professionally speaking, this makes perfect sense....

...However, my plans to meet with 2 different groups of friends next week will be balked if we do so, whereas only 1 of them would be affected if our plans go ahead as scheduled originally.

If shooting runs on schedule, I might even be able to return on Saturday evening, but again, this is all dependent upon the weather conditions that we encounter, since we shall be shooting the action sequences first, each of which is dependent upon natural lighting conditions, & each of which involves me to a greater or lesser degree.

GARY DAVIDSON loaned me his copy of a book about the making of BABYLON 5™, from which I took great comfort, for I had always wanted to know why it was that MR. MICHAEL O'HARE left the programme so abruptly.

Apparently, there had been pressure placed upon him for not being "bankable" enough, whereas MR. BRUCE BOXLEITNER, a veteran of several episodics, had tremendous cache with audiences who were/are outside the world of SF fandom.

The fact that MR. O'HARE went along with this decision so readily is a testament to his professionalism & to the great respect he had for MR. JOSEPH MICHAEL STRACZYNSKI (aka JMS), of whom GARY DAVIDSON reminds me in terms of the boldness of his business decisions & the ambition & scope of his story(ies).

I think it hit me so hard when MR. MICHAEL O'HARE departed the programme because I had disliked him thoroughly in the pilot telefilm, but grew to like & respect him within 2 episodes thereafter.

MR. BRUCE BOXLEITNER irritated me a lot @ first because I kept superimposing the other actor over his voice & image, especially where the relationship with AMBASSADOR DELENN was concerned, but to his credit, he made the role of CAPTAIN JOHN SHERIDAN his own in short order.

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

MON. NOV. 3/2003/13:50

I arrived by taxi @ [VENUE DELETED] with a powerful desire for a pint of BODDINGTON'S™, which is well, since I had known intellectually that this was where I was supposed to be, but my body would have taken me several blocks East of where I now found myself, had I let it.

I suspect that this might have had something to do with the fact that I was so keyed up for the meeting that I did not sleep, choosing instead to work on various other matters, not least of which was script-reading & sundry associated desktop issues, installation of software, et cetera.

EP was seated in a prominent place, approximately midway to the back of the building, to my immediate left, which is not the spot I would have thought he would choose.

As I expected, he faced the door, JESSE JAMES-style.
However, it took me a full 10 seconds before I located him - the place was not full, by any means! - as the look on his face & the physical attitude I had come to know over the past year were so different, so other, that he was rendered indistinguishable from the other patrons.
If ever he abandons his career as a creator of brilliant televised entertainment, his career as 1 of SMILEY'S PEOPLE™ is assured.

I found that my body was heading directly for the bar, PETER O'TOOLE-style, while my eyes & head were seeking after EP.
Noting his stricken expression, as well as the fact that the waitress was also serving as barmaid, I detoured immediately to his table, sitting beside him.

I greeted EP, asking when he had arrived.
He had been there since approx. 13: 10, but was beating himself up about the fact that he had not arrived @ 12:00, as he had planned.
This was something that I had great empathy with, yet found amusing, for I had wondered whether I ought to precede his arrival, so as to avert or alleviate his current condition, but decided against it, as prolonged exposure to cigarette smoke tends to cause me greater difficulty since my bout with pneumonia in 1991.
I ordered [DELETED].

EP asked me whether PRODUCTION REPRESENTATIVE'S tardiness was habitual or not, to which I replied that it was unusual in my own experience of the man.
I was not surprised that he was late, given that I knew he was coming from a meeting elsewhere & the weather was inclement.
Also, he had chosen the time & place of the meeting, & it has been my experience that one is always kept waiting whenever there is big money @ stake, whether as standard business protocol, lest one forget one's place, or because of circumstances beyond anyone's control.

The waitress approached, asking me what I should like to drink.
I knew in advance that there would be no BODDINGTON'S™, but I asked in vain anyway, just on the offchance that I had crossed over into another dimension.

PRODUCTION REPRESENTATIVE arrived @ approx. 14:10 dressed very nattily, shaking off his brolly as he made his way over to our table, then shaking hands as I introduced them to each other.
The waitress made her way over to the table again & he ordered designer tea.

PRODREP asked EXPROD how it was that he & I had come to know each other, what the series was about, his professional background, et cetera, & was impressed by the work that EXPROD has done, as he is experienced in managing other companies' affairs in such a way that he has saved them several millions of dollars each.
PRODREP in turn volunteered intel about himself & his company, detailing his background in Film production, Radio, Television & Opera, as well as Music Supervision & Composition.
This last impressed me greatly, for he had not mentioned it to me before.
EXPROD asked him in turn how my relationship with PRODREP had come about, to which he responded that he had trusted me immediately that we met (he was 1st Assistant Director), & that he had been looking for other opportunities for us to work together again.


"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™

SAT. NOV. 1/2003/20:00 - 01:00

I attended a party, whereat I elected to wear military garb as my costume.

The number of questions I fielded from fandom about whether or not this was "a sneak peek preview" of my FSQ™ garb, & whether they would be seeing the pilot episode @ TORONTO TREK 18 was most encouraging, indeed, so I must make a point of mentioning it to EP when I meet with him on MON., & will post pix when they are made available to me.

I found it especially intriguing since what I wore was the image that I had had in my head when first I read EP'S scripts, prior to being shown his costume design drawings....


Given that the RESIDENT EVIL:APOCALYPSE ™ wrap party had taken place last night, I was gambling that my friend would be awake when I rang him to arrange the FSQ™ Pre-Production Meeting, but fortunately, he was already up & awake, not @ all "hung-over" or out of sorts.

He suggested that he, EP & I meet on MON. NOV. 3/2003/14:00 @ [PLACE DELETED] to discuss our respective hopes for the series & the possibility of our being able to work together to get it into full production mode, the better to secure a Broadcast Agreement from stations & networks that we think & feel to be appropriate for the material itself.

Once this was arranged, I rang EP to inform him of the arrangement, in the belief that he would be less likely to become anxious about the meeting if he had been given sufficient time to prepare for it.

I asked him whether he had any further questions or concerns that he wished me to address before the meeting itself, as it was my intent to concentrate upon preparation to film SVEN™ tomorrow, rather than to focus overmuch on a high stakes business meeting about which I had no desire to begin secondguessing myself.

I am neither superstitious nor neurotic, but I am sensitive to the energies of others, so I attempt to insulate myself from them as much as possible by anticipating whatever concerns are likely to come up, the better to protect my time alone, so as not to divert my attention from a single task.

SUN. OCT. 26/2003/15:00 - 16:20

Rang EP to address concerns that he had put forth in Emails, expecting that our discourse would last no more than 10 minutes, but this was not to be.

He wanted specific answers about what he should expect from the meeting to come, what he should say, what he should not say, what the other bloke would say/not say, et cetera.

I told him that it should be treated as an exploratory "first date" or "sitdown" situation, wherein both parties get to know each other to determine whether they are people with whom they think it is or is not possible to collaborate, but that he should be prepared to answer questions about FSQ™, as well as provide a sample script & outline.

This was not satisfactory to him, for he wanted me to answer as though I had drawn up an agenda for the meeting that was virtually a script for him to follow, anticipating what the other parties' dialogue will be.

I began to feel as though I was a professional warrior in a combat scenario where I had been led to believe that someone was battle-ready, but discovered @ The 11th Hour™ that he was actually a civilian who was an enthusiastic player of videogames.

Naturally, this did little to boost my confidence in the situation, as I did not want to have to go into a meeting worried about whether my cues would be acknowledged & seized upon by him, or his to me, in turn, because he was using Semaphor while I was more conversant in Morse!

In essence, the next 45 minutes consisted of him stating & re-stating his position, me stating & re-stating my own position.

Because my transportation to the RESIDENT EVIL:APOCALYPSE ™ 2nd Unit location was due to depart @ 16:45, & because I had pressing business in the bathroom that needed to be addressed prior to my travelling - not least of which was shaving my entire face & skull! - I was becoming more terse & anxious in dealing with EP, moreso than I had intended.

This he perceived as irritation with him, which it was not, & he became more verbose as I became more monosyllabic in my efforts to ring off.

Normally, I would have done so after my allotted 10 min., but because he was becoming increasingly more neurotic, I thought & felt that it was imperative his concerns be addressed to his satisfaction, particularly since he had pointed out to me that OCT. 26/2003 was the first anniversary of our introductory meeting to each other.

Given that I am innumerate, the fact he had taken note of this fact was a salient detail that I could not ignore, as it underlined a primary difference in our respective temperaments, for I am generally only dimly aware of my own birthday, let alone bank holidays, et cetera.

I recognised that I would have to abandon my pre-performance ritual depilatory ablutions in deference to the immediate need to plug the dike, for I feared that he was ready to back out of the meeting rather than risk the possibility of his work being rejected.

Such neurosis is normal in writers, I have found, since they spend so much time alone with their work that they become paranoid over losing touch with what other people will think of the finished product, doubting their own talent & skill, hearing the voices of everyone who ever told them that they did not have what it takes, that they will fail, ultimately, that their work "needs just a little more polishing".

My own experience & conditioning requires that my own judgement be paramount over others' or I would never go to a single audition, certainly I would never get hired for anything, so I felt myself becoming impatient, as I perceived what EP was saying @ that time to be a lack of trust in my aesthetic assessment of his work.

This feeling was reinforced by the fact of his nearly verbatim repetition of his position, which in turn forced me to do the same until I had spent all the time I had allotted to the call, to checking Email, to Calisthenics, et cetera.

When it became clear to me that I would not be able to allay his fears during the course of the conversation, & that I would not have time to shave, I told EP that I would give him a bell tomorrow, rang off, had a rushed shower, brushed my teeth - no time for flossing! - then departed to flag a taxi.

I arrived @ the studio with less than 5 minutes to spare, tipping heavily on top of a $20.00 fare in gratitude, thanking the Indian driver profusely, for he had driven almost as well as I would have done within the time constraints of the moment.

...However, if I had been operating under normal conditions, I would have used that same money to obtain 10 transit tickets, then taken a tram to the studio, while having a leisurely read of AMERICAN GODS™ by NEIL GAIMAN along the way, arriving relaxed for the night's filming.

My lesson for the day is that I must compartmentalise even more than I have done previously, otherwise I shall not be able to manage my personal life as well as honour dovetailing professional commitments.

This means that I must build time into my day in order to address unexpected developments from now on, lest I be overwhelmed by them in conjunction with my current responsibilities.

I no longer have the luxury of being able to sleep more than 4H/night if I expect to achieve my goals over the course of Season 1 production.

SAT. OCT. 25/2003

EP expressed concerns in Ansafone™ message about how to proceed next week during our meeting.

I was rather surprised by this, given that he has always been quite explicit about his intent for the series.

To my mind, he should just tell others what he told me to persuade them to become involved with the project, but as EP reminds me often, he is Canadian, whereas I am a Briton.

This means that there are numerous instances of my trusting in spontaneity of the moment, whereas he is more inclined to plan what to say if the other party responds in a given manner.

I shall ring EP on SUN. OCT. 26/2003, prior to my departure to resume work on RESIDENT EVIL:APOCALYPSE.

Our respective modes of working will either complement each other or come into conflict with each other during the course of Season 1 Production, so I view the coming week as something of a litmus test.

WED. OCT. 22/2003/16:30

@ RESIDENT EVIL:APOCALYPSE ™ 2nd Unit basecamp, I encountered my friend once again, who accosted me about what I had wanted to discuss with him, @ which time I informed him that we were seeking after an experienced SF Producer for our programme.

He then informed me that his own company is currently involved with 9 different film projects, but that they are looking for a viable SF episodic to produce, & suggested that we get together to discuss the possibility after next Monday, @ which time his obligations to the picture would be fulfilled & he would be free to explore other projects for his own company.

EP is asleep, so you heard it here, first!

TUE. OCT. 21/2003/15:30

GARY DAVIDSON notified me of the new dynamic FSQ™ banner which now appears @ the foot of each post. I think it looks smashing!

MON. OCT. 20/2003/24:30

GARY DAVIDSON contacted me with a progress report about the sets which are being built for the same episode that he dressed. He is overseeing their construction himself in a very "hands-on" GENERAL PATTON sort of way, since they must be sturdy enough to travel a good distance, pitched & struck easily, yet be able to handle extreme low temperatures, wind, et cetera. The location is so remote that it's more cost-effective for us to build the sets here, then transport them along with crew & cast.

He also sent me the latest design drawings for some vessels that will feature in the series, 1 in particular for the episode in question that has the utilitarianism of the SPACE: 1999™ Eagle Landers, but far more aesthetically pleasing to behold, & more manoeuvrable.

WED. OCT. 15/2003/11:00 - 17:30

Executive Producer GARY DAVIDSON came to my digs where we viewed some early 16mm film/video work of his.

I was pleasantly surprised to learn that he has been as strongly influenced by SCTV™ as I, although it was clear that his favourite writer/performer on that team is not the same as my own - which is as it should be.

Afterwards, we viewed BATMAN™: DEAD END, which he had not seen before, despite having heard of it from others.

He found the story thin, but was impressed that so much had been done for "a mere US$30 000.00".

I commented that I thought it to be the best screen adaptation of the character to date, eclipsing even my personal favourite, BATMAN™ (1966) starring MR. ADAM WEST. (If MS. JULIE NEWMAR had been in the film, then I might have judged differently!) The film's only flaws, to my mind, were that the Director was overly influenced by TB's film, but I think I may be the only 1 on Terra™ who doesn't think his work to be the last word on THE BATMAN™.

I thought it telling that despite our both being fans of THE BATMAN™, EP's criticisms were primarily those of a Writer/Producer, concerned with story structure, whereas mine were very much those of a Stuntman/Actor, impressed as I was with how much Character had been revealed by onscreen Imagery, rather than Dialogue, how much Plot & Conflict had been advanced by onscreen Action.

Happily, he shares my concern for consistent Dramaturgy, which is reflected in each script he writes. When the show hits the airwaves, I should not be @ all surprised if NASA™ headhunters were to seek him out.

@ our first meeting, we discussed STAR TREK™ extensively, but never watched it together, although our criticisms tend to follow the same pattern there, also, but he is far more technologically concerned than I, whereas I tend to be more militarily inclined. (It still bothers me that DR. "MUTINY" CRUSHER & ENSIGN WESLEY "COVER-UP" both escaped court martial & due punishment arising therefrom!)

The viewing concluded, we set out to obtain certain costume pieces that he requires for "SHUTTLE DOWN", driven by me.

I enjoyed the fact that he was directly involved in the process, rather than circulating memoranda which may or may not get read, dependent upon others' stress levels & the politics of the studio system.

He knew what he wanted, but sought my opinion about the items he selected. I had concerns about a mark on the left shoulder of 1 garment, but he was confident that it could be removed with ease. Suspicious of the salesman, I inspected others, but the unmarked items seemed to be of lesser quality than the others, so I demurred.

The purchases made, Executive Producer announced that it would be a good time to take luncheon, so I drove us to his favourite restaurant in The Beaches, where we fed upon some of the finest beef that I have ever tasted. (I was beginning to feel like MR. WILLIAM SHATNER in a meeting with MR. GENE RODDENBERRY @ PARAMOUNT™!)

Afterwards, we perambulated for a time, then he showed me a location he had scouted for a later episode, which further fuelled my enthusiasm for the series - as if that was necessary! He also outlined a feature film idea that he had been bouncing around for awhile, which was also very thrilling, although for different reasons which I cannot go into, here.

Later, I returned him to his home, then returned here to begin reading the latest script he had provided me, as well as a revised draft of a later episode. The former has some incredible characters, scenes & dialogue in it that will make some lucky actresses & actors Very Happy when they are cast!

"...Be seeing you!"
Stuntman/Actor FINNEGAN'S SQUAD™