Another layer of naivete falls away...
As I complete my 5th week at Autonomy, more things become clear about the nature of people in the entertainment industry. As you've heard they're very plastic and artificial out here. This is more true than you can imagine. There's a lot of things they say that you literally have to translate, often on the spot. Sometimes it seems as though they like you personally or may even come across like you have common interests. In the real world this might be construed as a possible friendship or at least a work pal. Ah, but remember where we are...this world of make believe, this world of The Wizard's curtain which hides the true meaning or intention. The only problem is you have to be able to decipher what is behind the curtain without physically pulling it aside. Nothing is black and white here except for the Chaplin films in the vault somewhere.
I've learned that an editor is a tool...a creative and talented one at that, but still a tool. If you're a freelance editor working at a post house, socially you're not really part of the machine. You're like the repairman who comes in to make things right, do a great job, be thanked in word and paycheck, then go on your way. No matter how friendly they seem, you're there to do a job for them...period.
I've learned when you introduce yourself to the company president and, after conversing for a moment, he says you should come up to his office to talk at some point, this means 'I'm glad we spoke, thanks for taking a moment to say hi'...something I realized as it was happening (because of past experience) and did not follow up on. See...smart.
I've learned that when payroll screws up your paycheck twice in a row DO NOT ask them to correct it more than once. They will begin to look at you as being difficult, and this is something you don't need if you expect the phone to ring in the future after the current project is complete. Then when you drop the subject even though it was their mistake, they're all smiles again and any concern they may have had evaporates. Yes, this is particularly idiotic in my book (and I'm sure everyone else's outside of LA) which I will explain in more detail if you ask on the phone.
I think one of the mistakes I've made in the past is to take people at face value, even though most times I know better and have learned quite a bit since my first trip out here. I'm allowing my subconscience desire to meet new people cloud what I really should be solely focusing on in the workplace; doing the best job I can creatively / professionally and making the client happy. Both of these have so far been accomplished very successfully on this project and with Autonomy. Anything else is a waste of my time.
I know I'm not the brightest guy when it comes to social interaction, and possess a serious sensitivity problem. I've always put an overt amount of stock in human relationships. In other words I would expect too much from people. A disorder from before 8 years ago (this Wednesday is that anniversary) I've done a very good job of flushing out of my system. But occasionally there are latent symptoms. It's an ongoing struggle but in the end I'll hold the award high and say "I've arrived, thank you". I think of Tom Hanks saying he's always laughed off the whole Hollywood facade thing. I need to embrace this more and continue to keep my eye focused firmly on the ball.
Once more from the top: Me. Career. These are the only two things that matter............well O.K. and my home theater. :-)
So this coming week I go to work with a renewed feeling of who I am, who the people I work for really are, what I need to do, what my professional worth is (confidently excellent), and most importantly where I am in comparison to 8 years ago. Never forget.
...And all of this without paying $75 to see my therapist. Not bad!