Friday, November 20, 2009

I'm Sorry, Ripley

What can I say? I've been bad. I've ignored you, walked all over you and treated you poorly. You deserve better. You're talented, beautiful and strong. You redefined what women can be, what they can achieve, what they're truly capable of. You showed me that sometimes the best man for the job is a woman. You don't take any prisoners or suffer fools. But if I put my trust and faith in you, you'll lead me to the light at the end of the tunnel. You're tough, passionate, inspired and sensitive. You're deadly, yet caring. If it's a crap day, you're the one person I can count on to pull me out of the abyss.

You are strong enough to fight for both of us, yet gentle enough to cradle. You are Ripley, Dr Slaughter, Dian Fossey, Dana Barrett. And I'm sorry I've treated you like a doormat. At least once a day. If you weren't right at the foot of the stairs on the way to the gym, this wouldn't have happened. I really didn't notice for the first few months. Please forgive me. I'll take more care, now, I promise.

*EDIT: Just noticed the cigarette butt. Does no-one care? LOL.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Soldering, Sounds and Superheroes

After delicately (and successfully) soldering new earphones onto my iPhone earphone cables, I realized that I can actually do something else other than act with some degree of skill. (And even that is open for debate) Buddy James even suggested I could perform the same task for friends. I could call it Pimp My Phones. Or I could call it Nothing At All, as it's never going to happen. Seeing as it took me easily an hour to perform and may have fried countless neurons in extreme concentrated effort, I highly doubt I could do it again. Like climbing Kilimanjaro, it's a one-time thing. And Kili was a walk in the park by comparison. Literally - Kilimanjaro National Park. But I digress. Mountain: easy. Headphones: not so easy.

Speaking of the 405, how wonderful would it be if you could just go bang-bang at drivers who change lanes without signalling or steal the parking bay you've been waiting the past 7 minutes for. (Just to avoid confusion, "bang-bang" is not a sound that emanates from one's mouth.) Oh, and what's the deal with people who drive with one arm out the window? I understand if you have to make a signal because your indicator's not working (how many are these days?), but why hang an entire arm out the window? Flipping the bird can be done quite comfortably within the confines of your standard automobile cabin.

I'll admit, I rest an elbow. I'm an elbow rester. There, I said it. But it's only an elbow, folks. Like a skirt that ends at the knee, I'm not showing the whole thing. I'm leaving something to the imagination. Plus, my hand is actually inside the car (or skirt, if you will), so as to provide immediate assistance should the need arise. What use are 5 limp and dangling digits when there are only milliseconds to respond? Huh? No use at all. Except perhaps to open their own door from the outside, which is just stupid. Arm danglers are just advertising the fact that they can't drive stick. (Or that they can't fit into a pair of jeans, if you're still following my awful analogy) I know that makes no sense whatsoever, but it makes me feel better, so there.

Moving on...

I guess the point of all this is that there will always be things to whinge about. Those arm danglers aren't going anywhere. It's the little things that surprise us, sometimes and bring us pleasure. Like a good cup of tea (even if it's been microwaved 3 times 'cos you forgot to drink it and it went cold). Or soldering something for the first time. And if you don't succeed at first, at least you gave it a good go. We can't all be superheroes all the time. Even Spiderman needs to take off his mask and have a smoke break sometimes...

Sunday, September 6, 2009


We've been going through a heatwave in California and I realize that heat can drive people to do things they wouldn't ordinarily do. Like wander out at midnight because they can't sleep. Cover themselves with fake tattoos. Play the kazoo and enjoy it. The list goes on. I've found myself doing more online shopping. Daft really, considering it keeps me at home in the stale heat of my apartment. There's something very wrong with the fact you can return home late in the day when the heat has finally subsided, only to open your door to an oven. Very wrong.

Even more wrong is the strong probability that my landlord thinks I wear nappies. What could possibly give him that idea? Perhaps it was the large box which arrived yesterday, emblazened with the words DIAPERS.COM. If I did in fact order diapers, I would ensure they arrived in something a little less conspicuous. The actual item was a stand for my laptop. It's a used item, so Daddy56 (or NewMom29) figured he'd just drop it into whatever was handy. "Too big...too small...ooh, wait. Honey, do we still have that big diaper box? You know, the one that says diaper that you can read from like a mile away? We do? Cool."

Now I get to endure endless chuckles and sniggers whenever I enter or leave my apartment. (I should mention that I am sans child and my landlord is fully aware of that) I could explain the real contents of the box. "Oh and by the way, that box? The one with with DIAPER on the side? Funny story, but that actually had something else inside it. No, really. Haha. Alright, then. Have a good day, now."

But what would be the point? Would YOU believe me? Probably not. It's not like I can prove that the stand actually came from the box. Even worse, I distinctly recall being excited when the landlord gave me the package. I thanked him warmly and ran upstairs! No doubt to slip into something more comfortable!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Healthy and Good

I went to help buddy Cliff Simon on a shoot recently and we stopped at a gas station for snacks. Among the usual assortment of chocolates and candy, I spotted this (how could I miss it?). A stand offering bananas. Not just any kind of banana, mind you, but fresh, healthy bananas. It even called them "good". Yum. I like bananas. Offer me a banana: I'll take it. Leave me in a room alone with a banana and lemme tell you - only one of us is coming out alive. You might even call me a banaddict.

Anyway, clearly one of the yellow fellows was well past his prime. And not in a "passed in the night" kind of way. More in the "dead for a week" kind of way. It was black, for crying out loud and bloody conspicuous. How the heck does one miss such a thing? Admittedly the guy behind the checkout was a little slow, as in weed slow. But surely he's not the only person in the store? Did no-one notice the thing? I find that hard to believe. Nay, impossible. I reckon he or one of his stoned San Bernadino cronies did spot the offending fruit and simply ignored it, too lazy to chuck it out. Instead, they left it for an unsuspecting/complaining customer to bring it to the counter for them.

It's not as if Chiquita Bananas are directly responsible for the lies on their stand. (For they become lies once the bananas go rotten) But on some level, they should shoulder the blame. Who actually delivers on their promises? In this case, clearly Chiquita did not. What's worse, of course, is the flood of TV ads promising to cure your headache, back pain, joint pain, sleeplessness, erectile disfunction, give you fewer periods or more hair. All sound wonderous and full of hope, yet the side effects, more often than not, include the very symptoms you're trying to alleviate. Anti-nausea drugs may cause nausea. Headache tablets may cause headaches. Anti-depression medication may lead to suicidal thoughts. How the f%$&* do all these things get approved the FDA (Farcical Drug Administration) if they can cause such hazardous or even lethal side effects?

It's all down to business, of course and the pharmaceutical companies are the biggest business, alongside WMD production. So they can push their products through, grease the right palms and it's business as usual. Maybe in 1980, but in 2009 it's still happening? They're not protecting us, the public. They're protecting the health of their stocks and patents. Every week I see a new TV ad from a law firm declaring a major suit against a drug company. "If you or a loved one became ill or died while taking XXX, call the law offices of..." Has no-one learned from all this? The sicker we are, the more it costs to treat us. That costs the economy in the long run. And the worse off all of us are, as States fall into bankruptcy and disrepair.

But we won't see change as long as drug companies and politicians see only as far as the next quarter. And the worse conditions get, the more they'll push their snake oils. I wouldn't be surprised if we see the emergence of infomercial style drug ads. Pfizer's own Billy Mays, shouting "Limp dick? I've got your card; Viagra's the pill that gets you hard! Call now and we'll even throw in these edible panties. That's a $20 value, absolutely free!"

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Socks in Crocs

Went to the Coldplay concert last night, which was fantastic. We were in the pit, so got a great view of the band. I also got a great view of one of the patrons leaving wearing crocs with socks, which is never a good look. And an excellent view of another gent heaving his guts out 2 feet behind me. Personally, I didn't think the concert was that bad, but I guess people have different tastes.

Speaking of crocs (the chomping kind), you can catch me in killer croc movie Primeval on FX, today at 1pm and 7pm. And I'm in Creepy Gid repeats on CSI:NY on Tuesday at 1pm and 5pm. Without repeats, I'd just be repeating myself, in that I have nothing else to report. Although I did discover a store in Pasadena which sells, amongst other oddities, stone hands, scarab beetles and a stuffed beaver. Quite why you would want one or all of the above is beyond me, but, for the man/woman who has everything, I know a place...

Come to think of it, I have always wanted a stuffed crow. Since I was a kid, I dreamed of owning one. Why stuffed? So it wouldn't fly away, have to be fed or mess on the floor. Perhaps these are commitment issues. Perhaps simply a small window into the mind of a creepy young man who would grow up to play creepy roles on television and film. Perhaps...perhaps.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Just Another Bloody Day at the Office

I was going to call this entry "Michael Jackson Made Me Fat". But that seemed in poor taste, even if it is somewhat accurate. Here's the thing - my gym is on Hollywood Blvd, just on the other side of Mann's Chinese Theatre. In other words, juuust past MJ's star on the Walk of Fame. Which is all fine and dandy, except for the throngs of people both on foot and in vehicles, clogging up the roadways.

It's been nearly impossible to get through them to get to gym for nearly a week. In fact, I've made it through only once. And once a week does not a 6-pack make. I can feel myself getting softer by the hour. It might be insensitive to cut through the masses with a machete, but hey - "I'm tryin' ta work, here!" And casting peeps are looking for fit creeps. I don't go up for creepy slobs or chunky stalkers. It aint me. Nor is this pseudo East Coast accent.

So why the pic? Well, it's from a recent gig and hey, I hadn't posted a pic of me in a while, so there you go. Except for the one with bike - and that pretty much cast me as a background performer. Which I'm not, okay? Okay. Moving on...

What else? I just completed narrating The Atrocity Archives, a rather fun sci-fi novel and am set to voice another video game next week. So things are looking peachy, despite the industry slow-down. Just waiting on that cheeky recurring creep of a role. I know he's out there somewhere...

Monday, June 8, 2009

Miami Heat

It's been a busy patch after a rather dry spell. And, as if to drive hom the point, I have been caught in a number of rain showers. I've been in Miami for the past week or so, working on a TV show. Really humid here, if you don't already know that fact. So humid, in fact, that on my first day of filming, I was close to brain dead by lunch time. Fortunately I got through a rather lengthy scene, chock full of dialogue and am a tad more acclimatized than I was.

This is me in between showers in what I quickly learned, is the rainy season. I traveled with my folding bike for the first time and have had great fun tooling around the hood of Coconut Grove, where I'm stationed. (Note el cheapo plastic bag on the seat for weather protection) Today I stopped for my first ice cream in over a year, which was a ridiculously good Argentine chocolate flavor. Yum.

Have 10 pages to shoot tomorrow, so keeping this brief. Just to let you know I'm still alive and kicking (though somewhat slower in this oppressive heat). Nice role, too. For once in my acting life, I don't come to a grisly end. Will share more details once it's all in the can.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

American Accents

For years, I foolishly watched American television. I endured marathon sessions of Airwolf, Golden Girls and Magnum. I purchased my own copy of Gotcha, so as to replay the scenes where Anthony Edwards teaches Linda Fiorentino about Roots Beer floats and Big Macs. I would sit there, blurry-eyed from hours of study, absorbing as much as I possibly could, before passing out and being woken by the dog licking my face. As time went on, and we got satellite TV, I even sat through weeks of the first Iraq war on CNN, just to hear Wolf Blitzer's scholarly tones.

Little did I know that there was another, quicker and more effective way to learn an american accent; indeed, any American accent. The solution? Furniture. But not any kind of furniture. Oh no. You can't sit your ass down on a pine dining chair and expect a transformation. There's only one kind of material to help master an American accent. And that's wicker, my friends. Good old, time-trusted wicker. Like a good neighbor, wicker is there. Or maybe that's State Farm.

Anyways, I thought about getting an armchair and then I thought "Why not get the whiole dinette set, too?" So I did. Well, I tried to. Fact is, it's not furniture they're advertising, but paint. Spray paint. No matter. I bought a couple cans, but after a month spraying my throat with "ocean blue" and "matte black", I sound no more American than when I brought it home. Though I am sounding a little more hoarse. And the nausea's killing me.

But maybe that's how it starts! The transformation might already have begun. This will be handy at my next audition - I can just throw a can in my bag and have a quick pfffft before I go in! Gonna sign off and go spray again. I just wish I had a can of "pearl white". I could give myself a movie star smile at the same time!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Klingons and Corpses

There are many strange and interesting sights on offer in a town such as Hollywood. Today, I offer you a glimpse of but two. Strolling to my local coffee shop, I passed this gentleman, lying sprawled on the sidewalk. Still recovering from a heavy night of drinking, no doubt. Returning home an hour or so later, the man was still prone and passed out. Or possibly dead. He did fit the very stereotype of a chalk-outlined corpse. And in that, I took some solace. If he was really expired, I am sure his position would have been far more ghastly.

The following day, en route to watch a certain film, I was accosted by 3 peculiarly dressed thugs. They were speaking in foreign tongue and brandishing weapons. As I passed by, they became aware of my presense. (Although, I suspect they were aware of me all along) I surreptitiously snapped this photo, before moving on. Only in the comfort of my home, hours later, did it hit me. These men were undoubtedly responsible for the sprawled man's demise!

Phew. Another lucky escape. You gotta watch Hollywood, people. Turn your back for a second and it'll stab you with a spork.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Men Who Wear Masks (and other tales)

As I left my apartment building this afternoon, I was greeted in the lobby by a man cutting a woman's hair. There are 2 things I find disturbing about this encounter. The first is obvious: giving a haircut in a public thoroughfare is, well, creepy. The second thing that irked me was the blase greeting: "Hey there, how you doing?" As if this was the most normal sight in the world.

Now I don't know about you, but if you're going to have someone cut your hair, professional or otherwise, do it in a salon. If you don't have access to a salon, do it in a private room. Away from prying eyes. And people who might be perturbed by strangers' follicles falling to the very stretch of floor you have to cross to get from the front door to the elevator. Note that there was no special mat or assistant sweeping up the brown locks; they were landing in delicate abandon on the bare floor.

I thought at first there must be a shoot going on. One of those "ambush make-overs" they have for breakfast TV, but, alas, no camera crew in sight. I was further disappointed by the fact I had an appointment to get to and thus could not engage the "stylist" in the health implications of such an event and who the heck was gonna clean up this hairy mess?! It won't be my fellow tenants, who see fit on occasion to walk their barking dogs after midnight and stomp out cigarettes in the passages.

With my own private GFR (Gideon Freakout Rating) reaching code red, I breathed deeply and headed for the car. Safely straddling the 101, I felt a little calmer, until it became apparent that the car behind me contained a robber. The driver had a mask on to conceal their identity. Easing off the gas (to afford myself a closer view), I realized that the driver was a man and his mask was of the surgical variety. I thought immediately of the dreaded Swine Flu and looked for other passengers in the car. None. Unless his girlfriend was in the terminal stage and curled up in the footwell, Masky was travelling solo. (He was also driving a Honda S2000, so had no backseat for a hidden person to lie on)

So why the mask? Surely if he did have flu, he would only need the mask around other people. Then I figured that perhaps he'd just had some kind of facial surgery. Rhinoplasty or a particularly aggressive Restylane session. But then he'd simply have a surgical dressing, wouldn't he? Maybe, like me, he simply prefers his dressing on the side. In the current pandemic pandemonium, a surgical mask tells people you're cautious, sensible, with a family to protect. As opposed to vain and insecure, with a desperate need to alter your appearance. Or maybe it's the latest fashion trend and I've been left behind. Yet again.


Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Cheesy Creep

Being somewhat of a cheesy actor, I thought it fitting to venture downtown for the Grilled Cheese Invitational. As the name suggests, the event is a competition to see who can create the best grilled cheese sandwich. There are 3 categories: Missionary (standard cheese, bread and butter), Kama Sutra (any cheese, bread, butter and other ingredients) and Honey Pot (dessert sandwich sweet in nature).

It seemed like a splendid outing and so, with buds Karma and Nicole, I jumped on the Metro and cruised from historic Union Station, through the fabulous food fest and trinket-laden Olvera Street, to join a queue half a mile long. After an hour drooling in line, we were informed that judging tickets were all gone and we would only be sampling the free Kraft Singles sandwiches. Better than a kick in the pants, but, after a further 20min wait in another line, the tiny triangle, albeit free, did not fill much of my belly.

So we headed back to Olvera and scoffed down some cheesy Mexican fare instead, washed down with a couple of Dos Equis and a churro. A rather good way to spend a Saturday; out and about with other humans and feeling almost normal. But that feeling was short-lived. As I arrived home today, I held the elevator door for a woman just entering the apartment building. I asked what floor she wanted. She said I should just go to my floor and that would be fine. No, she wasn't flirting. She was afraid to give me her floor number, lest I follow her out. Yup, even when I'm smiling and being friendly and nice, it seems I still come across as creepy.

Good to know I haven't lost my touch...

PS. Fear not, Incognito, the blog will continue unfettered!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Gid is now on Twitter

After boring untold dozens on a near weekly basis, it is time to take things to the next level. I have joined the Twitterati and now have a Twitter account. You (all 4 of you) can now follow me as gid72 on Twitter.

I like the idea of Twitter - a real time update, where each entry must be kept to 140 characters. I like compact. I like brief. Even now, I am, struggling to come up with anything meaningful to share. After today's rather rough voice session, I am left speechless in both word and print. (I think I experience mild brain atrophy after such gigs) So with that said, I will leave you to a well earned weekend.

Tweet tweet!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Lost in Trainslation

The Japanese website for horror movie Train has a new trailer. A little different to the first one. It also has a very brief (2 person) cast biography. The still shot above shows me trying to decifer it, without success. Eventually, after gaining naught apart from a blank stare and some bleeding from the temple, I thought I'd try an online service to see what they said about me.

I think it may have lost a little in the translation...
I am from the U.K. and will emigrate to the Republic of South Africa later. In the days of a student, I take the audition of a professional theatrical company and start a career as the actor triggered by it. I repeat a career as a comedian, a singer. For a movie star TV movie "Rhodes" of the BBC production96), "TheSorcerer 'sApprentice"02), "GloryGlory"There are 04), TV movie [red water / shark hell]. I play the leading part in [the marsh of the カニング・キラー massacre] (07) by a guest-shot, the movie in [24] popular TV series, [CSI: New York] after emigration in Los Angeles.

Couldn't have said it better myself! And now I am off to hunt down one of my recent appearances in a little gem called The Marsh of the カニング・キラー Massacre. I hear it's like The March of the Penguins...

Only different.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Barely Functioning

This morning, I poured cereal into my coffee cup. Do I prefer it that way? No. Am I on a strict diet? No. Am I having a stupid day? Quite possibly. What joys are in store for me, after starting the day like this? Only time will tell...and this blog.

It could be the pineapple juice I had last night. With vodka. There was a time when I was drinking fit. I could have a couple of beers, multiple shooters and still conduct a lucid conversation and (irresponsibly) get home. That time is long gone. I simply don't train any more. I barely drink twice a month, so when I do, it's a strain.

As with any exercise, a warm-up is essential if you're going to push heavy. Start with a Rock Shandy or light beer, perhaps. After that, you're ready to ease into a few sets of Guinness or white wine spritzers. Then (and only then) should you attempt your heaviest reps of clear liquors. Or go for a one rep maximum with a straight-up shot of Tequila or Jack Daniels.

Now I will take my leave and finish cleaning up the kitchen after pouring an espresso onto a side plate. It was all going well until I tried to add the sugar...

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Is You IQ Above 98?

That is the question designed to lure you to an online test-your-intelligence application on Facebook. Unfortunately the creators of the thing would have to answer "NO", seeing as they can barely even speak. The correct phrasing, of course, is not "YOU IQ", but "YOUR IQ". Oh the sweet irony.

Perhaps they're targeting people who say things like "Is you gonna eat that?" and "I aint no criminal". In which case, I would recommend putting [sic] after the question. Sadly, they can't be all that stupid because, after you take the test (and get results sent to your cellphone), the app surreptitiously charges you $10/month until you cancel. And that is really

Another choice example of the dumbing-down of the world was on my radio yesterday. Here follows the commercial (give or take):

WOMAN VO: Wherefore art thou, Romeo?
MALE VO: Flashlight...five dollars.
WOMAN VO: Wherefore art thou, Romeo?
MALE VO: Eye glasses...forty dollars.

And that's where I stopped listening. (The eye glasses may have cost more but I care not) What the heck?! Wherefore does not mean where, people! It means why. As in "why are you Romeo, because if you weren't Romeo, you wouldn't be part of this ridiculous ongoing Capulet-Montague clash and we could live happily ever after". Poor Shakespeare would be turning in his grave, as would any other English speaker who ever studied Romeo and Juliet at school. Which, presumably the copywriter (and intended audience) of this spot did, otherwise s/he wouldn't have written it!

And yes, it's a Mastercard ad. Not an SNL sketch, in which case the misinterpretation could be said to be deliberate. I'm glad I don't have a Mastercard. After hearing that, I'd be compelled to give it back. However, I have decided that the spot could still work, with a little rewrite...

WOMAN VO: Wherefore art thou, Romeo?
MALE VO: Paperback copy of Romeo and Juliet...eight dollars
WOMAN VO: Wherefore art thou, Romeo?
MALE VO: Vocal training...two hundred dollars
WOMAN VO: Wherefore art thou, Romeo?
MALE VO: Wondering what you really learned at school...priceless.
For a quality education, there's anywhere but here. For everything else, there's Mastercard.

And as I searched online for a photo to go with this post, I discovered this Google AD which says it all:

American IQ test
Get your IQ in few minute´s
try our proffesional IQ test now.

Gawd 'elp us!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Billboard Bliss

I was driving along the other day and this billboard caught my eye. I don't remember getting paid for it. Come to think of it, I don't recall the photo shoot, either. But, to be honest, I barely recall what I had for supper last night. So that's no surprise.

Anyway, it's pretty cool being up there. I've always wanted to be up in lights. Or at least large and looming on a wall. I'm just a tad concerned about the message: Rescue Me. Yeah, I need rescuing, but isn't that a bit personal? Like printing Unemployed Actor. That bit's not cool. Not cool at all.

I don't think I like my billboard any more. I'll get them to take it down. Rescue shmescue. And why do I look all dejected? Look at my posture. It's positively suicidal. Oh man. I'm gonna jump...

Don't jump, Gideon! Don't jump!

Hang on. I'm not really up there. Why am I shouting at a billboard. It's not even a billboard. It's my computer screen I'm shouting at. Ah, silly me...

What's that? (sorry - someone is talking over my shoulder)
Not me? What do you mean it's not me?
Shut the $%@** up! It's clearly m--

Wait a minute. You might be right. My nose does look different. That's not me at all!

Oh, I see what's going on here. They used a photo double. That's why they didn't pay me! Sneaky bastards.

I'm calling my lawyer...

Saturday, April 11, 2009

A Scarf in Summer

The weather has been warming up nicely and what better way to welcome in the summer, than by scarfing down an entire roll of Oreo cookies? To be fair, I only had half. Half a roll. Well, half of two rolls. I may even have had more than half of one or both, which means I may have scarfed more than a roll. Alone. In one sitting. Well, I was standing with a friend. But it was a single session. Of excess.

I don't even like Oreos. I think I've only eaten them once or twice before. Well I certainly made up for it tonight. And shoot me now if they weren't the most delicious thing I've tasted in 2009. What's worse is that I vaccuumed up a turkey panini in between the two rolls. Or two halves. Whichever way you look at it, it isn't pretty. That's like having dessert, followed by an entree, followed by another helping of dessert. Disgusting. And yet so very very good.

I've never been a big eater, but I may be changing. These days, I can't go to bed without a jam sandwich. Hey - I eat it, I don't snuggle with it! This is how obesity starts. I might be preparing for a new movie role. Yeah, that sounds good. "I'm bulking up for a feature". Sounds better than "I just can't stop shoving crap in my face". Jared Leto reportedly gained 60 pounds for Chapter 27. Pa! Gimme a couple more weeks and I'll be ready for Chapter 28. I think I have my dodgy 90210 glasses lying around here somewhere...

Monday, April 6, 2009

Manly Men and Secret Sects

I'm happy to reveal that I have two upcoming audio books. The first is an abridged version of Neil Oliver's Amazing Tales for Making Men Out Of Boys, which is rather a long title but good stuff nevertheless. It's a good old fashioned compilation of tales of manly men and their remarkable accomplishments through history.

Scott of the Antarctic, the men of the Birkenhead and the astronauts of Apollo 13 are just three of the extraordinary stories brought to life. The kind of book a father reads to his son. As the author states in the opening, "there was a time when boys were taught to be men" and this is just the sort of book to help them on that path.

The second book is entirely different. An international thriller reminiscent of The Da Vinci Code, The Genesis Secret by Tom Knox centers around journalist Robert Luttrell, who is sent to cover an archeological dig in Turkey, but soon becomes wrapped up in something far more sinister and deadly. Bizarre murders are being committed in the UK and soon we discover that Luttrell's story is inextricably and terrifyingly linked.

The Genesis Secret is a captivating read and, with its large cast of characters, was a real treat to narrate. More news when these audiobooks are available for download.

Oh yeah, and you can catch me on the CW's 90210 tonight at 9pm playing, you guessed it, another creepy guy. I look a little like Nineties James Spader in this one. Wasn't a good look then and still isn't. But hey - director Jason Priestley did choose which glasses I got to wear, so...

Friday, March 27, 2009

Fake Cops and Real Detectives

Watching the news today, there was a report about a murder in Sherman Oaks, California. Then a detective came on to read a statement. Fair enough. Except, the detective in question wore a fedora as if he had stepped right out of the fifties. And the murder in question? Perpetrated by 3 guys posing as cops.

Ironic that the real detective reporting on fake cops looked every bit the fake cop himself. Or mafia hoodlum. I mean, he looks snazzy and hip but if he came to my door, I wouldn't buy him as a detective for a second! He's trying too hard. If I went in to an audition as a detective, wearing a hat like that, the casting director would shout "Next!". Or maybe he'd just comment "Nice hat" and then giggle to himself.

But what do I know? I'm the guy who wore a bathrobe to look like an Angel. Hahaha...

Head Games

During a recent audition, the casting director commented on my footwear. "Nice boots," he said. "Thank you," I replied. Then he chuckled to himself for a few seconds and then began the scene. What the hell is that about? Obviously a private joke. He can't have been sarcastic. I mean, my boots were brown, very normal looking boots. You might laugh if they were clown boots, bright pink or very pointy. Haha. Very funny. Let's all take a moment and guffaw. But they aren't. They're common brown leather boots. So why the comment? Did he genuinely like them? And if so, why the laughter?

During another audition, I noticed, mid-speech, that the casting director was looking at a resume. (His assistant was reading opposite me) It wasn't my resume, mind you - which would have been nice. If he's not going to look at me in my audition, I'd rather he was looking at my resume than looking down his assistant's blouse. But no. He was looking at someone else's resume. I know this, because the headshot stapled to the back of the resume was very clearly not mine.

Now, to be fair, he could have made a mistake. The casting assistant did take 2 men in to the waiting area at the same time. (See? Some of you are confused already) Both of us gave her our headshots. (Stay with me) Then he called "Gideon" and in I went. (I know, it's dizzyingly complex) There's only a 50/50 chance of him picking up the correct resume. But when each actor's resume is attached to each actor's headshot, the odds have to improve, right? And when my name (like every other actor in this town) is printed in bold typeface on the front of the headshot which, coincidentally, also has a large colour image of, um, ME, you would think he could pick up the right one. Especially since the other actor had a shaved head! You would also think that he would quickly realise his mistake and either swop resumes or put the one down. But no - he continued browsing through the other guy's credits until I finished the scene. Sweet. Perhaps I was so dull, he thought he'd see who was next...

My other favorite is where I arrived to audition for a major series about a quirky detective. I arrive 10 minutes early, to find the office locked. I knock and knock but no answer. So I wait. In the sun. Slowly sweating in my "hitman black" sweater. After 20 minutes, someone saunters up and unlocks the door, but says nothing to me, the obvious waiting-to-audition-actor, brandishing my stapled sides (script). So, after a moment, I go through the door and sit in the waiting room. After another 5 minutes, the guy comes through with a sign-in sheet and says "I'll be with you in a minute; I have to make some calls". I sign in and wait a further 5 minutes, before he calls me in.

In the room, he asks what role I'm reading for and then pages through his file to the scene. Then he looks at me expectantly, waiting for me to start. I look at him. He looks at me. I remind him that he starts the scene. Oh. He starts the scene and remains, head buried in the script. I wonder where his reader is and where the hidden camera is for this "on-tape for producers" audition.

Midway through the audition, the door bursts open, and in walks a guy carrying a tripod and camera, no doubt for the day's auditions. He has a brief chat with the casting person, who suggests he comes back in a few minutes. The guy leaves. Then the casting guy says "okay. let's just take it back a couple lines..." And we finish the scene. Did I get the gig? No. Will I ever get back in to read for them? Unlikely. Because the guy won't remember me, as he didn't watch a second of my audition. However, my name will be sufficiently familiar for him to know that he brought me in - I just didn't make an impression, so he won't call me back.

Now, one could make the argument that I have every right to utter the following responses to the aforementioned behavior:

Scenario 1. "Excuse me. I'm glad you like my boots, but what's so funny? Do you think it will help my performance if you laugh at me for no apparent reason immediately before starting the scene?"

Scenario 2. "Excuse me. That resume you're looking at? It's not mine. I'm Gideon Emery. The name on the one you're holding is Not Gideon. He's still in the waiting room. Would you rather see him first?"

Scenario 3. "Excuse me. You're obviously a little rushed this morning. How about I come back later when you're all set up?"

Unfortunately, as an actor, you can't. Because if you do demand the same basic respect you offer them (being polite and courteous), you won't be seeing them again. Ever. Naturally everyone is entitled to a bad day. And not all casting people behave like this. Most are consummate pros. But it can be a challenge when you spend hours preparing for a casting, missioning through traffic, struggling to find a parking spot, only to have the person clearly sign the fact that they couldn't be bothered.

Sometimes I couldn't be bothered to blog. But I do. I suck it up and blog, people.


Because blogging is all that separates us from the beasts...

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Western Stage & Eastern Screen

The 50 Hour Theatre Festival that I acted in a few weeks back was a blast. I got to tread the boards at Zombie Joe's Underground in a whirlwind get-your-script-and-learn-it-stage-it-perform-it-in-24hrs blitz. We had 3 performances and, all things considered, it wasn't too bad.

Here's a pic from our little piece, entitled Dr Lox. I played the good doctor, who seemed to be going through some kind of withdrawal. I say "seemed", because it was rather esoteric and my character (like the actor playing him) was quite unstable. The whole Zombie Joe's family are fabulous and my trusty fellow actors were Danielle Larson and Jeffrey Grin. Some fun wordplay, stylistic staging and physical performance. Good to scrape off the old theatre cobwebs!

In other news, a sci-fi thriller that I filmed a while back finally got a Japanese release. It looks pretty cool with the Japanese titles and has a great little trailer. You can check it out RIGHT HERE. Hopefully it will make its way stateside one day soon...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Fix Your Accent

Only in LA would you find a sign offering accent services. Yes, if your accent isn't up to snuff, these guys will fix it for you. I love it. No "perfect your American accent" or "sound like a local in 2 weeks". Just a rude "fix your accent". It's not even aimed at actors, just the public at large. As if anyone stupid enough to read the sign must be in need of help. Your accent sucks and needs fixing. Nice.

Last time I checked, my accent was in good shape and needed no repairs. They should focus on the people I have to deal with every time I call the cable company/gas company/phone company, cos I can't understand half of what they're saying. And it really doesn't matter if the call center is in India or Indiana.

To be fair, being a British South African living in America has taken its toll on me. I say things like "paaass me the waa-duh". I'm neither English nor South African. And I'm hardly American, either. I'm just one big fake accent that becomes whatever it needs to be for the occasion: Russian mobster, home grown terrorist or snooty British talent show judge (I mean, do I really look anything like Simon Cowell?)

Maybe my accent does need fixing after all. I should call these guys. Question is, what exactly happens in a "fix" and how long does it take? Is it like fixing a sandwich or more like fixing your hair? How long does a fix last and is there a 90 day warranty? (I fixed my car and it still isn't fixed!) Is this a one-size-fixes-all kinda fix? And if I am going to pay to fix something that isn't broken in the first place, the least they can offer is a fix with all the fixings!

I like my stuffing and gravy...

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

I Can't Quite Put My Finger On It

With no news of my own, I thought it only fair to share the story of a Finnish blogger (and computer programmer) who, after losing a finger in a motorbike accident, decided to turn himself into a cyborg.

Well not quite. Jerry Jalava has attached a prosthetic "finger drive" where the digit used to be and can now apparently plug himself quite literally into computers. Kinda cool and creepy at the same time.

I typically prefer the gym over robotic evolvement. But if I had to do a little tinkering, I would build an espresso machine, so I'm never without a fresh cup of coffee. Plus, I wouldn't have to stand in line at Starbucks. Nor would I have to tip the cashier or the "barista" for pressing "pour".

What the heck is that about, anyway? Tipping for a cup of take-out coffee. It's not like they bring it to your table! If I'm tipping for service, why don't I tip my auto mechanic? They really work hard and even have greasy hands to show for their troubles.

Oh wait.

I remember why I don't tip my mechanic...

Monday, March 16, 2009

Very Close Now

You know how you have those feelings sometimes? Feelings that you're really close to getting something? Well, my landlord just informed me that I am "very close now" to getting parking in my building! The only catch is that I've been "very close" for the past 6 months. Before that, I was "number three on the list". He also said he saw me in both "the crocodile movie" and "the vampire".

Splendid. Maybe he'll be inspired to bump me up the list. Or not. Next month, he'll tell me "it was between you and another actor". This guy could have a career in casting. "We really liked you for the parking spot, but the plumber thought you were too creepy."

Thanks for the comments from those of you who watched my vamp stint. It was probably the most fun I've had on set to date. Coincidentally, my CSI:NY appearance aired earlier that day on Spike. Naturally, I discovered that after the fact. Probably just as well. A double dose of creepy Gid could cause irreparable damage.

Creepy or not, hopefully my next job is a little closer than my parking spot...

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

The Moonlight Shines Again

After some mindless surfing on the net, I stumbled upon the fact that Moonlight is screening on the Sci-Fi channel. For those of you who didn't catch me the first time, or anyone crazy enough to go for a second helping, 'my episode' of Moonlight is on Sci-Fi this Friday @9pm.

I thought it was a great little show that really didn't have a chance to build its audience. If you like a little romance and aren't scared of a little blood, then you won't be disappointed. Oh yeah, and if you like vampires, you'll like it too. Please be sure to watch beyond the opening scene execution, unlike some of my friends the first time around. I might be coming back...

When the only news is the state of the economy and supervillain-du-jour Octomom's new "octo-lair" (as Fox "News" calls it), don't you deserve a little fantasy escape? And what better day than Friday the 13th...

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Another Stage

With the disappearance of both the high pitched whining and the spring cleaning somnabulant neighbors, I am free to focus entirely on my lack of work at the moment. And in this downtime, I thought I'd add some new pics to my website. Pics of plays I've performed in over the years.

Here's a link if you're interested. It was quite fun revisiting my old photo albums to pick out a few nostalgic shots. Not least because 2 of them feature the man who got my professional career into gear, the late great Bill Flynn. He introduced me to my first agent and I was fortunate to work with him on 3 occasions.

I miss Bill and the experience of being on stage. It was great to jump back in, albeit briefly, for the "50 Hour Drive-By" the other weekend. Stirred up my passion for performing. It's curious how rarely one gets to actually act in LA, since most time seems to be spent in the pursuit of work. Theatre instantly reminds one of what acting is about - the act of performing for other people. And there's nothing like the immediacy of a live play to bring it all home.

I'm hoping to get a picture from the recent festival, but in the meantime, here's a look at Gideon over the years. Try not to laugh...

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Suppressing the Urge

How does one suppress the urge to kill? Most of us take a deep breath. Try to think of something else for a moment. But what if you can't? What if the very thing that's driving that urge is a high pitched tone that starts and stops every 30 seconds? What if you can't do anything about that tone because it's so disturbingly high pitched that you cannot identify the source - and thus cannot shut it off?

What if your ears are extra sensitive through lack of sleep? What if you've been woken up every night between midnight and 5am for the past 5 nights, because your crazy neighbor decides to his "spring cleaning" at that hour?

What if your anger from the high pitched wine and lack of sleep is exacerbated by the quote from your mechanic who informs you that you need $1200 of repairs on your transmission? And what if you spent $500 on a new alternator only a week earlier?

Is it wrong to kill if the opportunity presents itself?

Is it?

What if....?

Thursday, February 12, 2009

50 Hour Drive-By Theatre Festival

It's been a while since I stepped on a stage and it's time to step things up. On stage. So to speak.

Bring on the 50 HOUR DRIVE-BY THEATRE FESTIVAL. A half dozen or so 10 minute plays are written, directed and performed in a speedy 2 days. It's crazy. It's foolish. It's downright dangerous! But I'm doing it, because there are other brave people out there, like Captain Sully, who landed his passenger-laden US Airways jet on the Hudson river. Why didn't he land on, well, land? Because he wanted a new experience, people. A new challenge. When asked by reporters why he settled on the Hudson river, the Captain proudly replied "Because it's there!"

Okay, he didn't say that, but you get the picture. Nothing like throwing yourself in the deep end. A lottery system determines which writers get paired with which actors and directors. It's all so gosh darn random - just like life. We actors get the script on the Friday night and rehearse non-stop until opening night the very next day! And while I have no clue as to the story or role, I can promise it will entertain. How could it not? Plus there's a super talented team of peeps on board.

Shows are at Zombie Joe's Underground Theatre in North Hollywood; Saturday 2/21 @ 8:30pm, Sunday 2/22 @ 2pm and Monday 2/23 @ 8:30pm. Oh yeah, and there's also live music. All for the bargain basement price of 15 smackeroos.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Prodigal Twins Unite At Long Last!

I cannot express fully my delight and dismay at discovering that there's a film in production starring both Toby Maguire and Jake Gyllenhaal. Finally. For years I've been confusing the two. I mean, is there any difference between them? Are they even separate humans? Like Latoya and Michael (though the human part is debatable) - have the two ever been seen together? Lord knows I haven't seen them together at the same time. But then I've never seen them apart, either. And that's just as scary...

Nevertheless, Tobey and his separated-at-birth twin Jake are to star in a new film called Brothers. Oh. Okay. That's not so interesting now. I mean they already look like siblings. Surely the real acting challenge would be to play totally unrelated characters or, even better, mother and son. Now THAT would be interesting.

In other gripping news, I booked that "creepy presense" role for 90210. Look out for another Emery creep crawling across your screens soon. I was also briefly put on hold for a "scary-looking, downright unpleasant convict" on Cold Case, but "they went another way". Ah well.

If anyone knows which way they went, please point me in the right direction. Maybe there's time to catch up. I can be scary and, now that the rent is due, I'm downright unpleasant!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Eleventh Hour Approaches

Look out for tonight's episode of Eleventh Hour and you'll catch me doing my creepy best. Well not exactly, but close enough. The episode is called Miracle and, while I won't be giving away any spoilers, IMDB had this to say about the British version:

"The seemingly miraculous cure of a boy's tumor from drinking spring water sends Hood on a mission to debunk the claim".

So there you go. I can't say who I play, but I can tell you with absolute certainty that I am neither the boy, nor the spring water.

Eleventh Hour stars Rufus Sewell as sci-buff Jacob Hood and Marley Shelton as Rachel Young, the agent assigned to protect him on his intriguing cases. When the cops and feds can't figure it out, they call on Hood, the last man between us and total innihilation.

Alright, I made up that last bit, but you get the idea. It's a fun show that is somewhat part X-Files, part House. Eleventh Hour airs 10pm Pacific on CBS. You can also catch shows online at CBS.COM.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

I'll Have the Baby Back Ribs with a Side of Beethoven

We're well into the new year and I figured I should post a blog. At least something. Haven't thought of anything remotely interesting to write about, but to be fair, that hasn't stopped me before. And dammit, it won't stop me now!

New Year's was pretty low-key. I managed to see it in, despite my better wishes. My aim was to get blotto, but, seeing as I was driving, blotto was put on hold. Better. My snowboarder-wannabe ribs are bruised but not broken. But I have a new ailment to add to the list - tinnitus. After parking my car in a garage yesterday, a truck drove by and set off another car's alarm. It went off about 10 feet away at such a shrill pitch, that by the time I got home my one ear was ringing. As if I'd been to a concert. Just the left ear, mind you. As if I'd spent the entire concert less concerned with the band, and more interested in the person sitting to my right. Or perhaps I had to delicately sit on my right bum cheek, as the left was too bruised from a recent snowboarding trip. (Not that I'd know anything about that)

Anyway, my rib continues to make its presense felt. My back reminds me each morning that I need a new mattress and I may be going deaf in one ear. But otherwise, all is good. I'm thinking of writing a concerto. Unfortunately, the only note I can hear is a persistent, incessant E. No jokes- I tested this on my pitch pipe - it is a definate E! I was chatting to my mega-talented musician friend, KARMA, and she told me that a great deal of music is written in the key of E, so that's good, I suppose.

Auditions have started up. I went in for Lost yesterday and have one for 90210 on Monday. Just in case you thought a new year brings new opportunities, I will put your mind to rest. The 90210 character is described as having "a creepy presense". Phew. For a moment there, I bet you thought I'd cracked a normal role.

Must run off now. Gonna be a busy day. Haven't been creepy for a few weeks. Need to brush up. Plus, I have sheet music to buy and a wig to powder...