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February 24, 2006

I went to Sundance and found God - Part Two

Now you might be thinking, hey Will, how come you didn't write about Sundance while you were there? That would have been more exciting -- how long ago was it, like a month? Well, you'd be making a good point, but here in part two, we'll find out why that didn't happen.

We woke up in Salt Lake and got a ride back to the airport, because that was where we were going to be picked up. We ran into a friend of James', a writer for the Boston Globe, and we gave him a dvd and a card. He'd go on to briefly mention us in his Sundance write-up. We took the van to Park City with a nice British couple and some woman who kept talking about how she made a reality show but the network ruined her vision. How you could have a vision for a reality show is beyond me, but I took her word for it. The other people were dropped off at their hotels and condos and what have you, and we headed to our rented house, 1370 Woodside Avenue. But it turns out, there is no 1370 Woodside Avenue. It's the back of a fire house and a shack. We had been scammed. Well, not us, per se, we hadn't been involved in the renting, we were just the first ones to show up. So we went to Sundance headquarters and just sat there like bumps on a log, meeting the occasional filmmaker, including So and Brad, who offered us a place to crash and who made a great movie that won the special jury prize, In Between Days. We ended up not taking them up on it, because Sallie, the guest service coordinator, ended up getting us a hotel room.

So that was good that we had a place to stay. What was bad is that we had to move out of our room every morning and move into a different one at night. And normally that wouldn't be a problem, except that James and I came down with the flu. Now, when people have talked to me about the flu, I've always been dismissive. So, you basically had like a runny nose and a cough? Turns out the flu is some bad shit. At first I thought it was the worst hangover I had ever had. Although even in my freshman year of college, I couldn't get a hangover from three beers. Then I thought it was altitude sickness. It was really only after I had gotten better that I had the presence of mind to realize that it was actually the flu. (Made a lot worse, I'm sure, by altitude sickness and three beers the night before.)

There was a point where my whole body was numb and could only walk in very tiny steps. I could barely talk because I couldn't move my lips and I was just wandering around the hotel, looking for a place to sit down. I ran into a British filmmaker in our shorts program, Beck (you can see his film here), and he said, "Will, you look quite knackered." And I said, "I don't know what that means, but it's a very onomatopoeic description of how I feel." Although I doubt I was articulate enough to say onomatopoeic. He took me back to his place where I could finally lie down and then brought me a bucket that I threw up in. What a guy.

I didn't eat anything for about four days after that. I drank a lot of water and forced down a few bites of a muffin one morning. Since James and I were sleeping in the same room, he came down with the same thing a few days later. I did my best to attend movies and events, including a 'meet the press' brunch. I talked to a few press people, and the question I kept getting asked was, "What's wrong with you?" I took that as a cue to go back to bed.

Soon after that, my computer stopped working, which was bad because I had iCal'ed out everything we were going to do, and we were pretty much flying blind without it. That was when I found God. I realized that God really did exist and he was seriously out to get me. That night, James was a little worse than me, so I went to the 7-11 to get some stuff before we went to bed. He suggested I pick up a Tylenol PM, which I did, along with some cup of noodles that we cooked with our hotel coffee maker. Those noodles tasted awful but it was good to feel something in my stomach that didn't want to immediately come back up. And that Tylenol PM, boy. Lying in bed as I felt it kick in. I remember noting at the time that it was the best I had ever felt in my whole life. In retrospect, probably not my whole life. But definitely since I'd gotten to Utah.

To be continued...

Posted by Will at 1:15 PM | Comments (4)

February 18, 2006

I went to Sundance and found God - Part One

I know, I know. No one cares about Mr. Do or the Double Feature Finder, you want the goods. What went down at Sundance. Okay, here it is.

James, the director of Robin's Big Date, and I left for the airport together. In our excitement, we took some pictures of ourselves in the cab there. I think there were more pictures of us in the cab than there were actually at the festival, for reasons I'll explain later. So we got to the airport. We were going to stay in Salt Lake City for the night because the house we rented with a few other people supposedly wasn't going to be ready until the next day. But I called the guy, Alex Baldwin (that seemed odd to me too), to ask if we could come an extra day early. He answered his phone and said he was in a meeting, but we couldn't come early because the pipes had broken or something. Okay, it'd give us a chance to sample Salt Lake night life.

We ended up getting dinner at a place called The New Yorker (it was the only place that was open late), so Salt Lake nightlife remains a mystery to both of us. The one thing we did learn is that there's a rule in Utah that says you can't serve liquor unless you're a private club. So, to get around this, bars offer a temporary membership for a few dollars. Park City bars conveniently forget this during the festival (and most of Utah ignored it during the Olympics, I'm told).

We settled in relatively early (although I guess it was late by Salt Lake standards) and went to sleep, with no clue what would happen once we got to Park City.

To be continued...

Posted by Will at 3:52 PM | Comments (2)

February 14, 2006

Mr. Do and Double Feature Finder at the NYTech Meetup

I hope to have more later this week, but here's some stuff that you may or may not enjoy:

First, you remember Mr. Do? He had an arcade game in the eighties that was kind of like Dig Dug, but better? Well anyway, I drew a comic about him and Commissioner Gordon:

Page 1

Page 2

And here's me talking about the Double Feature Finder at the NY Tech Meetup last week:

Video (17 megs, thanks to youare.tv for taping and encoding)

Posted by Will at 4:42 PM | Comments (4)

February 2, 2006

All right, I'm back

And sooner or later I'll collect my thoughts about Sundance and have some hilarious anecdotes, but until then:

Justin's first podcast -- (I had trouble getting this off of yahoo's site, so I'm just going to host it here)

Robin's Big Date on Entertainment Weekly's Must List -- I'll feign modesty here and suggest it was a slow news day.

We're mentioned here briefly at the bottom, putting the idea that there's no such thing as bad press to the test -- (the site might make you take survey first)

Posted by Will at 1:06 AM | Comments ()