Liquid Plummer

A Commentary on the American Nightmare: A Diary of the Unemployed: Tales from the Now: Introduction

This entry is a broad outline of what has brought me to this point of unemployment and disdain for any sort the monotonous existence which has defined my experience working shit jobs for the last 10 years.

I guess I have to start off with what brought me to Los Angeles. I will get into this in more detail later but let’s just say I was flunking out of college, it was twenty six degrees below zero in New York, and I had an offer to enter into a business venture that would take me to the ever pleasant winter living conditions of Phoenix AZ.

Nothing worked as planned in Phoenix, so instead of another five day drive across the country back to New York, I opted for a five hour drive to Los Angeles.

Upon arriving in Los Angeles, I immediately caught the entertainment bug. My first job was as a paid audience member on the Guinness Book of World Records TV show. If you’re not familiar with how to get paid for being an audience member it works like this. Many talk and game shows have a live audience present during taping. These shows will sometimes tape an entire week of episodes in one day and since they can’t guarantee a room full of tourists will stay for the eight, ten or even twelve hours of taping, they pay people to be present through the entire process.

So that’s where I started, getting paid to watch talk shows and games shows. This is not a great way to make money, and quickly gives you a sore ass, but you do have a chance to see how these shows are made and being from nowheresville, it was kind of cool.

That is when I decided I wanted to pursue a career in the entertainment business.
I will get into this in more detail later but I eventually ended up in post production, Post production is an integral part of the production process. Some of the tasks performed at this stage include, but are not limited to, film processing, adding visual and audio effects, and editing.

The company I began my post career at handled the work flow of movies and TV shows that were set to release in theaters and/or were currently on the air.

The company I worked for most recently was considered more of a “dub house” where the work is geared more towards making copies of older movies and TV shows for syndication and international sales and distribution.

Neither was to my liking and the respective companies felt the same way about me.

If I had to summarize the daily activities of the post production industry, I can do it two words, making widgets.

Here I am, three thousand miles from home, a small town that has plenty of factory jobs, and I’m part of an assembly line that’s cranking out product that can best be described as, garbage that contributes to the intellectual lobotomizing of the planet.

My distaste for the environment and unwillingness to being a cubicle slave were too much for either company to bear and I was laid off, first during the writers strike of 07/08 and again during the current economic downturn.

Make no mistake; I was a terrible employee. I did not like my job and was not able to commit passionately to the tasks at hand. If I had held myself to the same level of honor I expect from others, I should have quit, but you can’t get unemployment if you quit and I was not willing to throw caution to the wind with the hope of getting another job simply because I was unhappy.

I will say, I will never put myself in that position again. If I have to do day labor, I would rather dig ditches than subject myself to that kind of soulless existence. I am not wired to be a fucking drone. When every moment of every day you are in an environment that is diametrically opposed to everything you are and want to be, you simply will not be able to cope with the resentment and utter disgust you feel in the process of performing your daily responsibilities.

I would also like to add, and not everyone was like this, but, in my entire life I have never come across a more diverse array of soulless, intellectually devoid, artistically ignorant, company man, backstabbing, honor less human scum than I encountered in post production. Mention Bukowski or Hunter Thompson to any of these twits and they will look at you like you have three heads. The absolute greatest excuse for population control I have every witnessed.

So I’ve said my peace and we’re both happier we don’t have to deal with each other anymore. So onward and upward.

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