Thursday, July 24, 2014

What Time Is It?

For most of my career, knowledge of time has been a huge factor. As a Booth PA, I carried a stopwatch (the old-fashioned kind--round and silver, with a clicky button for starting and stopping and resetting), and was called upon to estimate the times of scenes, time the taping of scenes, add and subtract time, and know how script changes would alter show time.

When I became an AD, while I no longer carried the stopwatch everywhere, I remained time-obsessed. How much time would come out in the edit, how much time was it taking to shoot a scene, how much time would we lose by making a double camera move?

And, of course, when I have edited, there has always been the issue of "cutting to time," and delivering the final product on time.

Given all of this, you would think I would be acutely aware of time--at all times. And yet, this morning, as I was having coffee with a friend, I wondered at least once if I was okay for time for getting to work. Our conversation was so consuming that I pretty much lost track of time--no sense of (PA-speak) how much time we had used, how much was left, how long or short we were running. And that was a glorious feeling. As useful and satisfying as time management may be, there is nothing like losing all track of time when doing something you enjoy. Sometimes in life (not in PA, AD, or Editor land!), the best time management is about immersing yourself and counting on the time to work itself out. Not always the safest bet--you may end up with a lot of "post-production fixes"--but certainly one of the most enjoyable.

Oh, and if you're wondering, the time all worked out--the coffee was not cut short, and my arrival at work was right on time, no cuts or editing necessary.

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