Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Finnish 101

Don't you hate it when you find out you've been pronouncing something wrong your whole life?
I've always heard of Tuonela. Who hasn't? And I know it's Finnish and means land of the dead. but everybody I know pronounces it wrong. It's like when every damn person in the world said Nir-VA-na, not Nir-vah-na.

So, on our way to Tuonela we get lost and have to stop at a gas station for directions. We ask how to get to Tuonela, and everybody just stares at us. "No place with that name around here," one guy says. We are leaving the damn gas station when someone asks if we're talking about Tuonela. Except he pronounced it Two-A-nell-a, emphasis on the A. Oh-kay. Don't we feel like a buncha dumb shits.

Required reading for dumb shits:
The Kalevala

Peaches and the view in my head

Right now I’m sitting in a café called Peaches. Wisconsin isn’t known for peaches. Too cold. The should have named it Apples. That would have made sense. Or Beans. Or Corn. Or Alfalfa. Even a café wants to be something it’s not. How fucked up is that?
I’m surprised they asked me to be part of the film crew. I’ll bet I was last person on their list. The probably called all the snobby wankers at Peck and they all turned it down. A shoot in Tuonela? That would probably rank down there with taping some spoiled little brat's birthday party. Hell, I think the idea is lame, but for a hundred bucks a day I’ll wax Robin Williams' back.
The biggest problem in this Tuonela deal? I’m no team player. That’s why I dropped out of film school. Didn’t fit in with the rich white kids. I’m white. But I hate a lotta white people. But I’m white trash. Not the same as White with a capital W. Not the same at all. Anyway, I got sick of the pretention and the black turtlenecks. I swear somebody once rhymed art with pot. Try it. It works. Some goddamn Julie Andrews from Hicksville, Iowa. I fucking could have killed the guy. So pretty funny that a group of journalism majors would hire me as their camera bitch. But they wanted somebody who could shoot both digital and film. Videography is blue-collar shit. And most of the time when I’m behind the camera people don’t even acknowledge my existence. Which is great, because you want to be invisible.

Okay, that’s too much personal information. I’ll probably delete this when I read it tomorrow. But nobody knows it’s here. I’m doing this for me. Not for people to read. Shit, I don’t know why I’m doing it. I’m in a weird damn mood. I’m not always so bitchy. Really.

Oh, there's a cute guy working here at the museum. I think he's kinda young, because he acted nervous when he told me to put my camera away. Light, curly hair. I'm crazy about curly, messy hair. Somebody called him Stroud. The writer/vampire guy's name is Evan Stroud, so I'm wondering if this kid is related. Almost has to be in a town this size. I know Evan Stroud has a skin disease that keeps him from going outside. I know he's not a real vampire. But we've have a couple of crew meetings, and that's the lame angle they want to go for. The plan is to make this Stroud think they're doing a legitimate documentary, but you know damn well they're going to end up making him look like a total freak.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Tuonela, Day One

So, here we are in Tuonela, Wisconsin. This is the inn where the crew is staying. At least at first. Later, when we invade Old Tuonela, we get to camp out in tents. Jeez. I’ve never camped in my life. Twenty five and I’m going to be a Girl Scout. Pretty wild.

Here's a picture of the town. It's hilly as hell, and full of churches. I've never seen so many churches. A lot of them are boarded up.

This is a bar just two blocks from the inn. Tonight we're going to check it out. I hear they have karaoke.