Thoughts and other trivia...

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Baulked again, naturally!

I haven't posted for so long that it feels like, to quote a line from a lovely song I've been listening to lately, I've been away. Even to me, it feels like I've been gone. But, I haven't. I was supposed to have been in Bombay already but, as usual, there's been a hitch. And, judging by how things have unfolded, I'm now unlikely to leave for another two weeks or so. And, that is very annoying.

I think I need a punching bag. Does anyone want to volunteer? Fancy being punched and beaten black and blue? Or, throttled? Mail me.

We were due to start work on our horribly delayed TV series around this time but, once again, we've run into some problem, which, if I weren't so hopping mad, I'd probably be laughing at. But, trouble is, in this state of mind, it's hard to appreciate the humour in any situation, least of all in one that's driving you crazy.

After the series was approved, we were told that the project would take three months to take off. That, we shouldn't get impatient or discouraged because their commissioning process is unusually long and tedious. We didn't mind because, truth be told, I can't think of too many projects that have come to us as easily as this one. Besides, the TV channel is bloody big, bloody good and bloody prestigious. It is a hugely respected name all over the world, highly watched and greatly admired. So, feeling pretty chuffed that we'd soon be doing a show for one of the best TV channels in the world, we didn't mind the three-month waiting period one bit. But three has now gone to nine months and we're still waiting!

The MD of the TV channel is out of town and, would you believe it, we have to wait for him to return so that he can sign our cheque! Is this how a professional organisation is supposed to function? Like my friend and work partner said, what happens when they have to pay the rent? What happens when other cheques need to be signed? Do they wait for the boss man to return? Does the office stop functioning when he is away? The funny thing is that the contract was formally signed over two weeks ago. Couldn't they get the silly cheque signed during this time? So much for being a global leader in the television business!

What is making me so mad is not that we've been baulked again. Not at all. Because being baulked is not alien to me. In fact, I'm the king of Been Baulked! If things seem to be working out smoothly for me, whether in my personal or professional life, I immediately start to suspect a conspiracy and/or mala fide intent. Because I always get baulked.

So, that's not what this is about. Like I was telling my friend, in the last few months, because of this project, it's like everything else has been put on the Pause mode. It's like I'm waiting for my life to start again. And, I'm afraid, all this unnecessary delay may have already robbed me of all the joy of working on the project...when it finally gets underway. Besides, what I'm feeling these days is exactly how I feel before a trip...all fidgety and restless. Especially if the trip is to Bombay. The last few days before a trip are the hardest for me to pass.

Anyway, there isn't much that I can do about this except wait. I can't beat myself up over this delay, I know. So, will someone else volunteer to be beaten? Please?


Blogger MockTurtle said...

That sounds completely frustrating.
Out of curiosity, is it an Indian firm that's behind the hold-up? It sounds like you're dealing with a lethargic babu-dom.
And to prove how clueless I am regarding the film industry, is there no way you can start on the project in some non cash-intensive manner until the TV channel formalizes anything? Maybe working on the script, scouting locations or talking to the actors.

7:50 pm  
Blogger Sonia said...

i solemnly volunteer to be beaten black and blue! oh wait, did i say solemnly? hyuk!

seriously though...
hang in there. and take up shadow boxing or something.

8:25 pm  
Blogger km said...

Say, there's a business idea. Rent-a-human punching bag. 15 minutes, 50 dollars, punch all that you want. We could be rich!

Also, have you guys considered singing "Big Boss Man, can you hear me when I call" loudly?

9:33 pm  
Blogger Sonia said...

KM: they've already started that at a restuarant in japan, where waiters dress up as whoever you wanna punch and you can punch them (for a fee of course).
most of the people come with pics of their bosses apparently :)

9:38 pm  
Blogger Szerelem said...

awwwww.....i feel terrible for you!
dont want to be a punching bag though. Dont worry, am sure everything will work out just fine...and start kickboxing lessons in the meantime.

10:10 pm  
Blogger Tabula Rasa said...

sympathies. this sounds pretty much like the reason i took up squash. (playing, not drinking.) try it.

8:46 am  
Blogger GhostOfTomJoad said...

MT: No, it’s an American channel but, in a way, you’re right because it’s the India office that has caused this delay. We could do all the things you’ve suggested and would have too if we were producing the show as well. But because we thought we needed a big name to get the series through, we had to involve someone else on this. So, my friend and I are only writing and directing. Mr Big Shot is producing the series and highly unlikely to take a step before the money comes through. And, honestly, in this case I can’t even blame him.

But, just to let you know, this is a non-fiction series in English. So, no actors! Will post more details when we get to the shoot.

Sonia: Shadow boxing would be great but...where do I go to learn? When I feel like it, I do try my own version of it...for about 30 seconds :-)

KM: I was inclined to agree completely...that it is a great idea till I read Sonia’s next comment. Someone beat us to it, pal :-(

But, I do remember reading a short story a million years ago about two down-on-their-luck friends who are in dire need of money. They decide to offer to slap and, as a result of that slap, publicly humiliate people’s enemies for a fee. For instance, if you were a celebrity and didn’t like the latest news story about yourself, you could hire them to slap the journalist. Sounds like fun, doesn’t it?

Szerelem: :-( There goes another potential punching bag. Thanks :-) Kickboxing? Would love to but where does one go to learn? Maybe I’ll just look it up on the Net

TR: :-) Thanks! Considering the practical aspects of my situation, drinking seems more do-able than playing. As with kickboxing etc, I’d love to play squash and have wanted to for years...but there’re no courts near my house. Lately, I’ve been dying to learn Krav Maga but, as luck would have it, the only class in Delhi is held exactly 24 km from my place and that too at 7 am or 8 pm!!!

10:44 am  
Anonymous driftwood said...

Go ahead. Take a shot at me. I make a good punching bag.

Sometimes, I spring back and knock you out. Don't mind that, that's all.

Hope everything works out soonish, Ghost. God speed.

5:13 pm  
Blogger km said...

Sonia, you've just crushed my dream :D

6:28 pm  
Blogger Prerona said...

hey! sounds awful ...
hope it gets better soon!

5:56 am  
Blogger Enemy of the Republic said...

Gosh, that is irritating to say the least. I had been checking your blog to see how you are. What a drag. Hang in there.

6:59 am  
Blogger kundalini said...

sorry to learn, ghost. if it helps i have a good feeling that it will all get going sooner. get in touch if you head south of the cooperage.

7:40 am  
Blogger GhostOfTomJoad said...

Driftwood: Now that's what I call a punching bag from that hits back :-) Incidentally, this reminds me of the line from Enter the Dragon when Bruce Lee turns to his opponent, who has just demonstrated his strength by breaking a solid wood board into two, and says: Boards don't hit back!

Thanks :-)

KM: Should we sue her?

Prerona: Thanks, it should be okay by middle of next week :-)

Enemey of the State: That's it. This sort of completely avoidable delays are irritating and annoying. But, thanks :-)

Kundalini: Hope so too but, either way, by next week things should be back on track.

As always, I'll be staying in Bandra but, you bet, trips to town are a must :-) And with Ramzan coming up, plans also include stuffing face with the many sweets at Mohammed Ali Road, etc :-) Will get in touch once I reach Bombay.

1:01 pm  
Blogger Sonia said...

hey, don't kill the messenger!

2:49 pm  
Anonymous chandni said...

hey u1 cheer up and take it as it comes...I know its easier said than done but then..dont have a choice do we??

as for ur location, I am confused now...weren't u based out of bombay anyway? if not, then where??

If its delhi..well I guess its time for the coffee :)

3:50 pm  
Blogger sattva said...

ghost, this must be really infuriating. fingers crossed it happens soon.

at least u will get to visit bombay...i won't! bandra. town. sigh.

5:15 pm  
Anonymous scarecrow said...

ah,that's pretty bad, frustration and restlessness can be killing at times.

anyway what abt a FightClub...

5:39 pm  
Blogger Bidi-K said...

maybe we should all contribute and buy you a punching bag instead, i am sure it will be well-used :) chill out in bombay.

6:22 pm  
Blogger GhostOfTomJoad said...

Sonia: Who killed the plan? The messenger, right? So, tell me, who do we punish? :-)

Chandni: *sigh* I was based in Bombay for a long time but *sigh* have been in Delhi for way toooo lonnng now :-)

Coffee it is then :-)

Sattva: Thanks. I feel bad for anyone who loves Bombay but can't be there :-) But look at the bright side of things...would you have had orange hair if you were still in Bombay? :-)

Scarecrow: Fightclub? What a brilliant idea, man! That's where I need to go :-)

Bidi-K: Thanks, how kind of you...unless, of course, you were planning to buy that punchig bag from Hell for me. You know, the kind that hits back :-)

1:41 pm  
Blogger Bidi-K said...

now that you put that thought in my head *evil grin* but maybe that will keep you too busy to get that series going!

5:35 pm  
Blogger GhostOfTomJoad said...

Bidi-K: Me and my big mouth. Damn! :-)

7:15 pm  
Blogger Sonia said...

umm, I say KM should be punished, for not coming up with the plan soon enough! *hee hee hee*

9:21 pm  
Anonymous fingers said...

Do something else in the interim.
Waiting is awful.

12:14 pm  
Blogger GhostOfTomJoad said...

Sonia: As long as someone else is being punished, I'm happy :-)

Fingers: Lookee who's here! :-)

Oh, there're things to do...especially since we're working with a new production team that has very little experience. As a result, we're having to do a lot of their work as well. It's just that we'd like to get going quickly and start doing what we're supposed to be doing.

1:04 pm  
Blogger Essar said...

If it's any comfort I know exactly what you're talking about! Most often, it's these "big" companies that end up being the most unprofessional - which I supose has got to do with the fact that they've reached a really complacetn stage - just like you did, a lot of pople ARE willing to wait for 9 months! TOI had awarded a fellowship to a very famour journo and 2 years after his book was published, they handt even paid him the first instalment!

1:37 pm  
Blogger Arthur Quiller Couch said...

Get drunk. Get stoned. Get laid.
Life is long.

4:15 pm  
Blogger Arthur Quiller Couch said...

If possible, also get black font on white background.

4:15 pm  
Blogger M (tread softly upon) said...

It is but natural to feel disappointed. But you learn to deal with it. With frustrations and delays and disappointments. And it just makes you stronger. To face the next wave. So keep your chin up.
And if you really think you'll feel better if you hit at something try it on a pillow. It works :)

9:28 pm  
Blogger sophie said...

oh just buy a fart machine and
go out and have some fun:)

9:10 am  
Blogger GhostOfTomJoad said...

Essar: You're absolutely right, I guess. In our case, however, there was never any uncertainty about the project coming through. Without going into the details, it's the really cumbersome process and the fact that we had to deal with four different offices of the channel, each located in a different country, that took up so much time. So, it was because that the delay was understandable that, up to now, I didn't really start cribbing. But not being able to start because these guys couldn't get the cheque signed was really too much :-)

This TOI journalist you it the person who wrote extensively about famine, etc?

AQC: I'm doing my best, man!

About the font...been meaning to do it for quite some time. Will, soon.

M: Considering I have only one pillow left, maybe I should start taking it out on something else :-)

Sophie: On my way to get one :-)

11:13 am  
Anonymous chandni said...

yaaaaaaaaaaaay!!!!!!!!!good to know that!
lets make a plan :)

1:46 pm  
Blogger Cocaine Jesus said...

feel free. punch away. be patient though, your time will come.

6:04 pm  
Blogger GhostOfTomJoad said...

Chandni: :-) Yes, let' weekend, then?

Cocaine Jesus: I hope so :-) But, thanks!

11:29 am  
Blogger austere said...

Curious- how do you expense for the assignment? In terms of manhours and the time difference in receipt and expense.

9:05 pm  
Blogger GhostOfTomJoad said...

Austere: The budget has gone up from what we had originally given them but the increase is not on account of the long delay...we should've been compensated for all that but, as you know, people usually don't bother with such niceties. Besides, if it does go into a full series, which will be clear by December, it is actually quite a huge project in terms of costs. So, maybe the channel felt that, on account of what they will end up paying, the delay is justified.

12:22 pm  
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11:26 pm  

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