It's not everyday you get to blow something up, crash a car, or get directed by JJ Abrams while fighting Kyle Chandler, but that's exactly what I did for years as a career stuntman/ stunt coordinator. There were days of sitting around on set for 14 hours wondering when I get to go on camera only to have my scene cut to days of working 20 straight hours because the director thinks the shot is more important than overall health and safety. However, I did have a lot of fun and made some fantastic memories but that's because I made a major shift in my core philosophy and can now look back on them with glee. After working too many nights, snacking on production provided food that was low in nutritional value and watching my fellow crew mates get berated by self-important producers and directors, I decided it was time for a change.
I walked away from being the stunt coordinator for a major AMC television series along with coordinating Meg Ryan's directorial debut film. Did the job not pay enough? No, it paid very well, though there were several issues getting paid the agreed upon amount in a timely manner. Working stunts on features pays an average of $900 to $1300 a day. That's before overtime and meal penalties which are almost guaranteed to happen because of the nature of how film productions are so poorly managed. But that's a story or perhaps a series of stories for my blog pages.
The how is not as important as the why.
"Don't let other people control your time"
So why is this page here? Simple. I've lived what most would consider an exciting and extraordinary life and now it's time to start putting pen to paper, flush out some thoughts and perhaps, just maybe, you can extrapolate some value from what I've seen and done. But don't worry, this isn't just a blah blah blah learn more about me site. I'll be posting about everyday life observations, raving about Freakonomics podcaster Steven Dubner, sharing my thoughts on everything from public education (by the way, I'm a high school dropout) to products from Exolens Zeiss, to the 2017 Porsche 911 Turbo. So if you're looking for a breath of fresh air from Facebook and need some more substance in your life then stick with me, you might learn something and I might get inspired to start blowing things up again!
preview - Stunt talk
Simply put, fire is fire. It's fucking hot no matter what type of fuel you use. Countless times I would hear other stuntmen talk about the fuels they use because they felt that a fuel burning at 1700º fahrenheit was better than burning at 2200º, not realizing the danger isn't in the extreme temps, but more about the preparation and protocols. Don't prep for a fire that burns at 1900º or even 2200º; instead, prep for a fire that burns at 4000º or even 5000º. That's how innovation is achieved.
Trial By Fire
I learned a lot about checklist manifesto when my life depending on it.