Business And Financial Wisdom You Can Put To Work


Portable Holes Inc
  Organized Links to Powerful Resources  
From Waste Lines To Waist Lines
From The Desk Of Drumlin S Boulder

I’ve been discovered!

I was on our local Business Happenings news segment a few weeks ago with Stacking Pits & Cavities Chairman, M.T. Kranium. The producers thought it would be a good show because we had just had a “public misunderstanding” with them regarding our periodic sorting of their garbage containers, and seeing corporate espionage is always a “hot button”, we could perhaps shed some light on the subject.

Well we’d both agreed, and set out a framework for the show, but when it was being filmed, M.T. started in on us again and accused us of underhanded activities, despite the fact a judge had thrown out their complaint, and accepted our position that we hadn’t broken any laws and that if M.T thought what we took was so important, he should have been more careful and treat it as ordinary garbage. He commented any liability sought to be established was offset by the plaintiffs contributory negligence. Well I lost it somewhat and I called them a bunch of weenies, which became the show’s sound bite and played over and over the next few days.

Then, out of the blue, I got a phone call from an agent who said she might be able to get a part for me in a television commercial.

Now I know a bit about how they fake things in commercials, like using chemicals to make food “smoking” hot, but I had no idea how to fake acting. And I always thought commercials were intrusive, repetitious, and dishonest, and appealed to base material instincts, …well really only after reading Naomi Klein,…so I wasn’t even sure I wanted to. But then interest got the better of me and I went to see the agent at the offices of MTE Ltd, which I found out when I got there, stood for Management of Talent by Edna.

“Why me?“ was the first question I asked Edna, who’d welcomed me with a big smile into her autographed picture filled office. I mean I’m not bad looking if you like circumferentially challenged middle aged men with a slightly off-center bald spot, but compared to some of the guys in those pictures, I really look like someone who finished second in a race where everyone else tied for first.

“It’s the passion and energy behind the way you said you weenies” she said. “It was like forked lightning striking down from the skies”. That gave me comfort because a description like that can only come from someone who knows drama and show business.

My imagination began to get the better of me, so I asked about maybe getting a part in television. “Dahling” she said, “television is what happens in between commercials, and I assure you, commercials are more carefully and elaborately crafted and more frequently seen than any program on television” . “And the stars”, she added. “There’s the Maytag Repair Man, Josephine the Plumber, the Man From Glad”.

I was beginning to warm to this woman and the idea. I mean if they can make stars out of Charlie The Tuna, Morris The Cat, dumb beavers, and that annoyingly smug tool couple that used to be on Canadian Tire commercials, I was good to go. So I started to ask more questions about next steps.

“First” she said, “you get yourself a terrific agent,…. that’s me”. I liked the opening…this was sales!

“Shoot days generally run to 16 hours or more, and someone keeps you and everyone in line to make sure the shoot comes in under budget, on time, with no disasters” she went on. “You get chosen by casting directors who work for the producers, so we’re going to need a dynamic head shot, a resume, a list of your special skills, and some acting and… ” and here she paused, peered over her glasses, gave me one of those looks people give you when you wear a paisley tie with a checked shirt, and added, “presentation classes would do you some good”.

Undeterred by that daunting challenge, I pressed on. “What else should I be doing?”

Out came a torrent of advice. “Do your homework” she began, and she went on to say that many people were trying to break into show business, so be professional and stay ahead of the competition. “Get to know the industry professionals and people who are working now”. Here she reinforced her value by adding she had the contacts I needed and that her network was the best in the biz. Yes, she really did say “biz”

“Study, practice, and study some more and learn from the best. Look at commercials, and take notes on how people move, their gestures, how they speak. And we’ll start small so you can learn, and develop you into a big fish in a small pond. And we’ll get your name, resume and photo out there, and often.” Here she paused, as if waiting for me to be impressed by her game plan.

“Sounds just like starting a business” I began, but I felt foolish as she immediately purred “But it is dahling, why do you think they call it show business?

I must have noticed my discomfort because she immediately went for the clincher and offered to take me to a location so I could see for myself how a set worked. I must say I had a great time watching actors sit around for hours while others worked frenetically around them setting up a sequence that took 5 seconds worth of film. Yup, a 16 hour day for 30 seconds worth of airtime would leave me plenty of down time to run Portable Holes via cell phone and fill my stomach with the fine food they had catered to the set. I was sold and signed on with Edna.

But back at Portable Holes my staff wasn’t too sure when I told them I was “in the biz“, citing my skills and looks and responsibilities elsewhere.

"Looks don't matter", I retorted, it is all about the needs of the scene. "I could be a lot of people" I added. and acting is simply faking being real about saying and doing whatever the script and director say".

Since following the money goes through the producer who owns it all, I was interested in that too, I told them, but this commercial gig is real. Edna helped a lot in that she said "present positively and passionately" and "think in the moment real" and "think scripted and practiced sales presentation" just before we did things in front of the camera in a screen test. That got me through to the extent Edna and I made her agency officially mine.

I promised them all I would not get a swelled head and too ambitious about it. As long as they gave me a day or two here and there I'd be happy. They all agreed they could run the business while I was shooting and who else but The Big Guy suggested I might want to go on TV as our company spokesman, like the hair guy who’s not only the president, but also a customer.

Inside I'm secretly pleased because once again I've got M.T Kranium jealous. So I’m off to my first shoot, though I’m afraid I’m already being typecast. The commercial calls for a circumferentially challenged middle aged man with a slightly off-center bald spot.

Corporate Memory Builders
Smart Taxonomies
Communities of Practice
Powerful Questions
Insights and Know How

         TeamStart Publishes Trusted Business and Financial Wisdom

TeamStart is a registered trademark owned  by Info L inc. Copyright to articles indicated in article. The rest is copyright © 2016 Teamstart and Info L inc.