Wednesday, September 24, 2003

A new angle on finding companies - I found a new search engine on google from their labs at It's a geographical search. So if I put in the address of my relatives and "engineering" it gives me a list of small businesses that have something to do with engineering within a certain distance. A very neat way to find the smaller companies that are out there.

Otherwise, promising lead with a company today that does business in construction process engineering. Interesting stuff - controllers, sensors, machinery. I sent resumes to them today.

It was cloudy today for the first time since I got here. And cold also actually.

Sunday, September 21, 2003

P.S.: I am SO SICK of looking at my resume.....

Today I woke up at 7:00, slept late until 7:45 and missed going to the car show with my uncle. I at bagels, went to the car show myself, felt sick, came home, went back to bed until 2pm. Then I at potato chips and drank a pop. No wonder I'm feeling sick!

Friday was my last day on '24' because the job wasn't the stepping-stone I thought it would be. They didn't really have a position for me other than background extra, and at a drive of over 2 hours some mornings, it was just not worth it. The pay was minimum wage which came out to be around $60 a day. I had a good time hanging out with the people on the show though - long days leads to plenty of time to talk and just shoot the shit.

Saturday night P.H. left town to go back to Chicago. Too bad! Enjoy the winter there! Fun times bowling though and driving around the city. I made some good contacts that night with Boeing also who I hope can get me a job in Anaheim - that makes 3 people I know there.

So that means I'm pretty much done trying for the movie industry - the jobs are so few compared to the number of people wanting to work and the demand for the work I want to do. The special effects industry is flooded with companies, so that means long hours for those people who do get hired. I guess I don't mind long hours, but I don't see a future where I don't have long hours in that field. Engineering is the ticket for now.

Also, although I'm a little insulted with the speed of the newly released 15" powerbook by apple, I'm probably going to get it. That way I can start building up my collection of video-making equipment so I can do this movie thing hobby-style later.

Saturday I spent the day with my other relatives, and halved their phone/internet bills! And I also decreased the # of bills they get from 5 to 2. Efficiency!

Saturday, September 13, 2003

'24' didn't have an office job for me, so they "hired me on" as a background extra. That means I walk around in the background while they're shooting to make it look like the set is a real office where people work. I get paid minimum wage for this, and I get the opportunity to talk to people who might eventually employ me. The days are 12 hours long, and the drive is no shorter than 1 hour each direction. I talked to one guy who drove 4.5 hours from San Diego to do background extra work - and he is like 45 years old with no desire to get any other position. I cant believe it -- the pay barely would cover that guy's gas to drive that far. Anyway, so I'm getting time on set, but it seems pretty futile. I'm going to work Sunday, Tuesday-Friday for a total of 52 or so more hours of work, and if nothing comes of it, I'm going to have to tell them I'm moving on.

At the same time I'm looking for engineering jobs, but not getting any callbacks, even. It is just wicked out here looking for a job. Unemployment in orange county is down to 3.8%, so that's good. All I can do is keep at it! I've been here a month and a day as of today.

Monday, September 08, 2003

I was called this morning around 8:30 to come in to '24' to be an extra, i think. Apparently, people didn't show and I'm replacing them. Gotta be up there (at USC) by 11am! I'm wearing a suit and bringing extra clothes.

Just to recap:


So i'm almost 1 month in to the day now in my job search. I have one month left to stay with my aunt until I have to move out, but my other aunt will let me stay over at her place when that happens. It really helps to not have a lot of expenses when you don't have any income. Gas is over 2 dollars a gallon here, so driving is pricy. Eating dinner out is probably 20% higher here than in Illinois, however groceries aren't that much more expensive.

Sunday, September 07, 2003

I ended up getting 2 interviews - one with the office manager and one with the post production manager. I even got my demo reel to the post-production guy, and he seemed enthusiastic about watching it. I'm not sure if they were just yanking my chain or what, but they seemed to appreciate my angle; I'm an engineer by training, but I want to get into the Entertainment industry. To sum it all up, they thought i was underexperienced to even get a PA job, however they invited me back for next friday and sunday to do "day play" or "floater" stuff. I'll take care of whatever they need taking care of. It may or may not be paid, but it will be a good time for both me and them to see if this is really a good match job-wise and may lead to future employment with '24'. Major thanks are due to P.H. for sending my resume to her friend working on '24' - this may be the start that I was looking for. Getting a job like this will mean moving away from my aunt's - it is a 2 hour drive otherwise. For the first few days when things are temporary, I will be doing the drive up and back through the city.

Once I got to the studio, they asked me if i was "Corey's friend"; well, i had never really met him in person, but I said "oh yea." Eventually later on Corey invited me onto the set they were working on with Elisha Cuthbert (Kim Bauer). I got to know a little about Corey's job there on the set and what he wants to do full time. He definitely gave me some insight. I dont want to divulge anything important, but i can say they were working on Ep 5 & 6 for season 3, and a season four is in the works. That is all promising to me as employment with them would at least give me a year and a half to work my way up their ladder. I'd say there has to be about 400 people working in this huge unmarked building north of LA alone just for the show '24'. Amazing. Even better, the show's hottie is hanging from the ceiling - what a body!!!!

The Sunday shoot i'm doing involves a helicopter landing on a street in LA somewhere, so they're going to block off streets, etc.

Went to the beach today - very nice. Hopefully those stupid Apple laptops will come out next week. I will be watching 24 season two (released tuesday) all the way through -- gotta do research before i go in Friday. Plus i dont want to ruin the story line by learning something in advace to watching the 2nd season. I'm also going to read "Anthem" by Rand this week.

To close, I want to point out that I am damn happy i'm not doing homework.

Thursday, September 04, 2003

I got a call today to come get to know the 2nd AD on "24". I'm not sure if this is an interview or what, but it's very exciting. The location is about a 2 hour drive from me at least, if not more, near Ventura County. That means I'll have to move if i do get a job... A tough decision considering i'll be strapped into a year lease probably. Anyway, obviously not the thing to worry about at this point! I'm researching Fox now and the show's production online. Will keep this updated when i get more info...

Oh and wouldnt it be great if i got an engineering job offer next week?

Wednesday, September 03, 2003

Space Rocks Stolen, Interns Found Guilty

This was really interesting to me. I applied for this internship at the Johnson Space Center in the Spring of 2002 and was interviewed, etc. There were 72 applicants according to a rejection letter I got in the mail from JSC NASA. Well, I guess they should have picked me instead of these fools! Ahh, my brush with fame.

It's tough finding the engineering companies that are in the area. I push on, though. Reading the business section and other stuff like that helps me get more familiar with the area. I hit the big ones already: Boeing, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, SAIC, NASA (nothing there.. heh), John Deere.

The car is silver where it used to be rusty - and i like that. Some finishing touches on that and i'll be all done with that project. I still need to touch up the other knicks on the car from rocks. It wont look great, but better than knicks.

So searching more today... i love this. Maybe i'll go to the library. Get me some lit-er-a-chur!

Monday, September 01, 2003

Still no job. I've mostly given up on sending out stuff to film places. I will still work a couple of angles I've been waiting on, but I am slowly widening my search for a job. Now I am looking for any engineering jobs that fit my experience (none) in the LA, OC area. If that doesnt pan out in a week or two, I'll expand that range to include San Diego. I see tons of jobs down there for some reason.

Went clubbing Saturday - good times! Also saw my friend Noah for the first time in a long time, we went to a swap meet. Unfortunately, no job, no money, no big purchases.

The car is coming right along - my uncle fixed the stereo. The ground was bad somehow (the frame wasn't the right ground for the radio, we think) so we ended up putting in plastic screws to insullate the radio from the frame. Funny fix, but it works great! No buzzing anymore as i hit the accelerator! That's quite refreshing after 5 and a half years of buzz in my ear from the rear speakers. The paint will be on in 4-5 coats on the spots i Bondo'd by tomorrow morning at breakfast. I'm psyched about that as well.

Boeing, Raytheon, and a few others were my targets for today. Median salary for an Engineer with 0-2 years experience is $56 K. I'm happy about that!! The jobs look interesting, however I'm not sure what I'll think if I end up in a job where I have to create machines that are used to attack things. I'll have to think on that one for a while.

The University job i was looking into has not changed in likelihood. I'll pass the HR screen, and I just hope my resume is good enough to get me in there. That way I wont have to put the film thing WAY WAY on the back burner, just on the side burner, so to speak.

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