Cracker by Damian Christie

She wore Blue... Velvet

I’ve been a bit preoccupied this week. The 48 hour short film-making competition starts on Friday, and like just about every other Scorsese wannabe in Auckland, I’m involved.

Specifically, I’ve been asked to be a writer for a bunch of very talented people. This is causing me no small amount of stress. As the Bible says, “Thou can’t polish a turd”, so if my script has certain faecal qualities, the end product isn’t going to be much better.

On the positive side, none of our core team has entered the competition before, so we have no idea what we’re getting ourselves into. Our schedule allows for eight and a half hours sleep each night, lunch breaks, morning and afternoon tea, with the final product being handed in around 3pm – four hours ahead of the deadline.

Not only that, but drawing from the part of me that thinks its fun to make life more difficult if at all possible – also known as the Let’s Try These Mushrooms Before the Exam, It’s Only Bursary Calculus Syndrome – I’ve decided I’ll be doing my Sunday morning radio show as per usual. Should make for an interesting weekend. Still, at the end of it I’ll have made my first short film. I've stayed up 48 hours in a row for a lot less.

The D-Day commemorations were great. A mate and I sat up until the wee small hours knocking back beers and laughing at the behaviour of the world leaders. Why were Her Majesty and Jacques Chirac giving each other the cold shoulder? Why was George W so late to arrive, and why did everyone stand when he did? Is Putin still pissed that Bush calls him “Pooty poot” behind his back? And how boring would Chirac’s speech have been for everyone who doesn’t speak French?

Interestingly, or perhaps not – I have so much trouble distinguishing these days – both Tony Blair and the Queen speak fluent French. Putin speaks German, English (and Russian, obviously), Schroeder speaks English and German. George W allegedly speaks Spanish, although given his tenuous grasp on English, I have my doubts it’d be up to much.

A few random bits and pieces before I embark on my first cinematographic journey:

I don’t want to flog a dead horse, but it has to be said the Sunday Star Times sunk even further in my estimation last weekend. It pays a paparazzo to stand across from Lana’s house and get shots (or at least, it bought the photo off some random slime) of Lana looking less than her best. Then it turns that photo into its cover story, with which presumably it hopes to sell lots of papers.

None of this surprises me, given my by now fairly well-documented opinion of the over-sized tabloid. What really made me choke on my Lego was this one line, in a paragraph all on its own, presumably to illustrate the lofty heights from which this guardian of morality was explaining its failure to enter the alleged bidding war.

The Star-Times does not pay for stories.

No, it’s much cheaper to pay a photographer to stake out some ill celeb. Well done, SST, Newspaper of the Year strikes again.

With midwinter approaching, I’ve been looking for someone to MC a wee gathering at Cracker HQ. There are no shortage of talented speakers in this country, that’s for damn sure, although this entertainer’s reference resonates with me more than most:

I just wanted to let you know how much our group enjoyed Jeremy Elwood... All our staff thought he was excellent and they were also impressed with how quick he was when he made up an impromptu love song about our CEO and his wife. Very Witty!! - Lynn Burke, New Zealand Pork Industry Board

You may have heard the rumours about Jennifer Lopez getting pregnant, hence the shotgun wedding to Marc Anthony. You may not care. But if you do, can I just say, be Very Careful if you enter the words “Jennifer Lopez” and “pregnant” into Google. There are some very odd fetishists out there.

What’s even scarier is the search result I got when looking for some images of Eminem mooning at the MTV awards (it was work-related, believe me). Don’t worry it’s nothing as offensive as you’d believe, and if you watch Eating Media Lunch, probably not the grossest thing you’ve seen this week.

That’s me. Forgive me if you hear me sounding a bit odd on the wireless this weekend, I won’t have had much sleep. If by chance you’re watching Tonight on Friday, some of my team-mates and I are being interviewed about the Furious Film-making project.

And, if you do see anyone running around with a camera this weekend (particularly on Sunday), it might pay to keep your distance, they’re likely to snap.