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I Have a Better Idea!

Désirée (síc) commented on Friday’s post:

I wonder, do not these pro copy guys some form of woe of silence? Or couldn’t you just have stood by him while he did the job, making sure he didn’t read or made 119 copies?

It feels like it must have been much easier for you to miss pages or leave original pages behind in the copier or left jammed paper being readable rather than a pro giving the script feet.

First of all, I googled “woe of silence” to see if it was a fantastic expression I’d just never heard before.  Alas, it appears to be a typo.  🙁

Still, I take Désirée’s méaning.   It’s perfectly reasonable.  I wondered about that exact same thing.

I say “wondered,” and not “said,” because I would never state such a thing out loud to my boss.

See, even though they’re not “creatives,” production coordinators, APOCs, and the rest of the office staff have the same fragile egos the above-the-liners are famous for.  It doesn’t matter how bad their instructions are, or how much better your solution is, if you question them, you’ll get shot down.

I wonder if it’s because they see your ideas as a threat?  After all, a good portion of their job is identifying problems, and giving out orders on how to fix them.  If a PA has a better idea than the boss, then that means, to a certain extent, the PA is even more qualified than him to do his own job.

Which, in my case, is true.

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7 Responses

  1. Out of curiosity, could you have had the copier guys make the copies for you while you take the afternoon off, then return to the office with 118 copies in hand, looking all frustrated, with no one the wiser?

  2. Sorry about the typo. It’s a hard time trying to be a little funny when I miss the target.

    Well, what I was trying to write was “vow of silence”, confidentiality.

    It’s a terrible thought that any person’s ideas could be considered a threat just because they are better than your own. But I guess you have a point there.

  3. The other PAs on my show do the same thing Javaman describes all the time. I would never talk that way on set because of what happened to Javaman. It always surprises me that someone would dare talk crap or talk about improvements on a show while on set/in the office. You never know who’s around the corner.

  4. “I wonder if it’s because they see your ideas as a threat?”

    Yes, they do.

    While working on a commercial, back in the primordial days, there was an awkward moment, when the dialogue didn’t match the action. It was really bad. So everything halts, until “the creative people” from the agency figures something out.

    Me and my other PA buddies were just hanging around waiting. While waiting, like any bored PA will do, we started riffing on the commercial.

    We thought we were out of ear shot of both the talent and the agency. Nope.

    The talent comes over to us and loved our ideas. We were a little hesitant, telling him, “we don’t think you telling the agency our ideas is a good idea”.

    He was a fairly big star outside the commercial realm, as such, he insisted. We cringed.

    He blabs our ides to the agency.

    Evil eyes scan in our direction, we all evert ours.

    Later on, all the PA’s get a note: “none of the listed PA’s are to work with such and such agency ever again”. (I worked at a production house).

    So, yes, they look at anyone with even a modicum of intelligence as a threat.

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