Sunday, October 20, 2013
A Quick Story (or Two)
This photo has been making the rounds for a while.
It popped up on my newsfeed again tonight and, for no apparent reason, reminded me of a story from early in my career that, nearly 30 years later, still makes me chuckle.
I was starting work on a very low budget film with a small crew. We had had a production meeting a couple days earlier, where the crew was introduced to each other.
On the morning of the first day of production, the director called the crew into a circle.
He said, "I know we all met the other day, but I am really bad with names. I promise I will know all of your names in the next few days. In the meantime, I want to make sure that I know what all of you do."
One by one, the director pointed at each of us and named our position.
"You are make-up. You are craft services. You are camera, you are the gaffer. You're a grip, you're a grip, you're a grip, you're the best boy..."
This went on until he came to a large, black man with a deep, rumbling voice.
Picture Michael Clark Duncan or Ving Rhames in his prime.
"You're a rigger," the director proclaimed.
The crew member drew himself up to his full height, puffed out his chest and, in faux self-righteousness announced...
"Where I come from, we call ourselves regroes."
A beat of stunned silence, followed by hilarity.
I hope that that story is as funny in print as it was in person.
I just remembered another story.
More recent. And more apropos of the photo that inspired this post.
A couple of years ago, I was having a conversation with the senior hairstylist on my current team.
She is a spunky, African-American woman who does not suffer fools gladly.
The subject of one of her former employers, Diana Ross, came up.
I said, "Did you hear that she recently filed a lawsuit against "The Cracker Barrel" restaurant chain, because she felt that she got bad service because of her race?"
"Well," my friend asked, "What did she expect from a place called "The Cracker Barrel?"
And on that note...
Have a great Sunday!