A Year And Change.

It’s hard to believe that just over a year ago, last August, to be precise, Nick and I were over in Indianapolis (hit the jump to scope the first blog on my Indy Adventure!), supporting my short film, First Date.

Flights, hotels, overbearing custom control (oh, the memories…), sitting on panels, fighting, food (so much food!) and a cavalcade of films and board games all blended together to make a hopeful trip a memorable one. Not only that, it made it an important one.

It was a trip that forced me to reflect on who I am, and what I want. It had me reassessing a number of elements in my life.

It was the first time that I had been a part of a festival to any degree; it was also the first time I was able to support a piece of art that I had helmed, with the help of many artistic friends throwing in to make sure it came to life. The panels were a lot of fun to do, and I got to meet and interact with a bunch of interesting filmmakers. I’ll also be the first to put my hands up and admit two sad truths:

  1. I didn’t belong on those panels, given the wealth of experience that I was flanked by.
  2. First Date didn’t make any sort of indelible impact, and has failed to segue into anything else since it was filmed, oh so long ago.

And that is a particularly sad, and harsh truth for me. I put a lot of myself into First Date; time, effort, money, and faith (blind, blind faith), but unfortunately all it kind of amounted to was experience.

I relished being on a set, and having actors come in and bring to life characters I had written, speak words I had crafted, was a special feeling, one I will hopefully experience again some day – but ultimately it was all an experiment that can be chalked up to experience.

This trip opened my eyes, however, to a different path that interested me. A total refocus on what I wanted to creatively explore; a new world that I wanted to be a part of.

Writing.

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Gen Con: Day Four (17/08/2014)

The final day of Gen Con finally rolled around, and with it, the excitement for that nights Summerslam event. But first, the day.

Rolling out of bed at 9:30, after allowing ourselves an actual lie in (despite the fact I’ve been getting up at least an hour before my set alarm every day), we made our way back over to Indy’s for another phenomenal breakfast. My anti-diet pill consisted of the ‘Ultimate Omelette’, complete with country style breakfast potatoes (whatever those are) and a choice of breakfast bread. I elected for the banana walnut, and didn’t look back, despite what my health conscious, guilt tripping, brain was trying to tell me. Or was that my now clogging arteries?

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Gen Con: Day Three (16/08/2014)

I finally got the chance to meet the Doctor yesterday. Well, at the very least a beverage that felt like it was taking me through time and space. The amount of caffeine, and the flavour involved, made it feel all timey wimey, what with my heart racing and senses heightened and whatnot. It was fucking awesome, and all thanks to an indy Indy coffee shop: Bee Coffee Roasters.

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Gen Con: Day Two (15/08/14)

Day Two at Gen Con did nothing but highlight how easy it is to deviate from a plan or itinerary when confronted with a lack of sleep, jet lag, and still getting up early in order to haul our asses over to the Indianapolis Convention Centre.

First up, however, was breakfast. Walking through the back lot of our hotel, and across the space of land that separated us from the diner that was our target, felt eerily reminiscent of The Last of Us: empty, desolate and forgotten. Thankfully, the restaurant was the complete opposite of that. Indy’s Family Diner was a neat little restaurant that revelled in its city’s racing roots and fame, adorning its walls with chequered flag trim and racing car models displayed proudly everywhere.
The diner didn’t rely solely on gimmick however, as the food and service more than met the high expectation set by our cab driver the previous day. Ashleigh, our waitress, was friendly, bubbly, kind and attentive, despite the early hour (8:30am), and was on top of our orders and, importantly, coffee needs throughout. It was a perfect example of American hospitality, and served as a further reminder as to why Hooter’s Shelby didn’t actually deserve the $5 we left her. The food itself was as delicious as it was enormous, check it out:

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All of that, for $4.99?! Let alone the fact that I had initially ordered the ‘Ranch Hand Breakfast’, only to be told by Ashleigh that they had a special meal deal on that was essentially the same thing, but more value for money. Or bang for your buck, if you will. Needless to say, I took her advice.

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Gen Con: Day One

First day down, and a lot of stuff has already transpired. Nick has been hard at work editing on his iPad to deliver the first vlog of our travels to you guys; entitled ‘Day 1 – No Sleep Til Indy’, it’s a short burst of a video that contains a lot of highlights (or low lights, really) of our journey into the States, and though it misses quite a lot in the connecting fight area, as well as the actual journey into Indianapolis, it’s a fun way to watch two friends grow increasingly exhausted over the course of 16+ hours. Which, incidentally, is the only reason why we are missing footage in the first place – the sheer exhaustion caused by travelling so consistently, as well as having run ins with passport control (which I wrote about yesterday) led to Nick’s weary eyes to droop, rather than readily capture footage for these vlogs.

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The Doctor, and The City of Brotherly Love

Yesterday wasn’t easy. I knew going out that it wouldn’t be easy, and I was right. Between waking up in South East London, and laying my head down to sleep in Indianapolis, we were travelling for a constant 16 and a half hours; this monumental trip included surly boarding pass checkers in Heathrow, a baby who enjoyed nothing more than beating the shit out of Nick, a free Shuttle service we chose to forego and a delayed flight between Philadelphia and Indianapolis that saw us waiting, due to technical issues with the electrics, followed by a changing of crew members that led to a total of 2 hours with us grounded before we finally got air bound. All of this pales in comparison however to the wonderfully twisted run in I had with one specific passport controller, and ten year psychiatric veteran, in Philadelphia: Dr Estrada.

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