‎"...a little 'trouty', but quite good" ~ Eve Kendall, North By Northwest

Friday, August 1, 2008

Woods Hole Film Festival

So the other day I was talking to my editor (ha! I love saying that! as if!) and he offered me a press pass to the Woods Hole Film Festival.

Woods Hole. Film Festival. Press Pass.

Do you have any idea what these words do to the heart of a pretentious poser wanna be writer such as myself? Good gravy. Let's review.

Woods Hole. Every time I go I want to chain myself to a tree and refuse to budge. I love it so much. It's like they took a college campus - one with extra-smart people - and put it in a harbor town. Okay, it's not LIKE that. That's actually what they did. Professorial-types in flip flops and community bulletin boards with everything in the world you'd ever want to do. And every where you look there's boats and water ways and places to get coffee. Oh it is sheer heaven.

Film Festival. I know NOT ONE IOTA about film but I know that it is way classier than "movies." Wait, I take that back. I took a french film class in college because I was massively pretentious even then. I am deep. I am worldly. I watch films. At the film festival I get to hobnob with the directors and then attend very brainy Q&As. Look at me, directors - I have a PRESS PASS! I am smart like you! Which brings us to

Press Pass. Oh the rush of sheer joy to be admitted graciously wherever my whim takes me. Having a press pass dangling from around my neck is Reckless Power. No one has any idea who I am (same as usual) except now they think I might be SOMEBODY. Because I have this plastic thing hanging around my neck, see?

Having said all that, I didn't plan to go. I just wanted to tell everyone I had a press pass to the Woods Hole Film Festival. That should just about do it, right? Because the whole point is that I could go if I wanted to. And I would want to if I could get out of my own way. But there's the picking up of the pass and the getting a sitter and the studying of the films to pick a day and then finally, the coup de grace, finding parking. The very thought of looking for parking usually makes me turn right around and go back to bed.

And that's how it would have gone down if my bluff hadn't been called by the very first friend I gloated to. She picked a night, chose the films, lined up a restaurant and asked if I had a sitter yet. So I lined up a sitter.

Today I picked up the pass from my editor (ha!) and he handed me my paycheck. A paycheck. They paid me to write columns that are exactly as well-researched and literarily lofty as what you are reading RIGHT NOW. Seriously, what is the world coming to? Am I dead? Is this heaven?

And then I asked him about parking. His response was, "Pray. And bring quarters." So I did both.

Meanwhile, the friend who made me do all this stuff and is the reason I was no longer on the couch in my pajamas, has bailed. It was a progressive bail, so I didn't really have a chance to go back to bed. First it was "hopefully the babysitter will have stopped barfing by this afternoon." And then it was "nope, maybe in time for dinner." And finally "9pm? maybe in time for the 9pm show?"

But really, by then I had gotten all "I am OUT OF THE HOUSE!" and was not looking back. I found free parking (free parking!) and scouted out the restaurant she had suggested (Quicks Hole). It turned out to be quick and cheap and there I was with my paycheck burning a hole in my Intrepid Reporter's Messenger Bag, so I went to Pie in the Sky afterward for a cannoli and coffee.

That's really where I want to chain myself. I could stay there forever. And would have if it weren't for those darned films.

The first one I saw was Killer Poet. I was going to say that the best thing about going was getting inside a restricted Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute building, but then I saw the film and deemed it even better than WHOI access. I won't ruin it by telling you about it (not that I'd ruin the plot, just that I'd defile it somehow), but I will say that during the Q&A afterward the director, Susan Gray, mentioned that Norman Porter had just gotten a tv in his maximum security cell and he was watching lots of PBS.

Then I walked out, in a fog of highbrow ecstacy, and there in front of me was a jazz quartet playing on the porch of a coffee shop. Woods Hole, I dig you so.

I was torn - stay and listen to jazz? Go to next viewing? I was afraid I had already had too much coffee (is it obvious?) so I chose to wander down the street, where I was smilingly ushered in to see four short films from the UK.

I must admit that I left after two because I loved them (but not as much as Norman Porter and cannoli) and I was afraid that if I stayed for the last two I might implode. There is a point when every perfect event should end, and this was it.

Besides, I want to ease into this press thing gently. I don't want to intimidate anyone by my intellectual analysis of short works. I will save that for next year, when I write my own documentary on finessing free parking. Anyone need any quarters?


Anonymous said...

I liked the guy who did time with Porter and went on and on about how they blew the robbery and how it should have gone off. Uncomfortable moments in Q and A time 4 sure.

Susan said...

anon - Hey wait, are you one of the smart people there? Are you here to call me out?