Sunday, August 31, 2008

The Omnivore's Hundred

Purely for the sake of research... Oh, who am I kidding? I'll do anything to keep from writing! Anyway, this list is a test of your gustatory (ain't that a nifty little word?) prowess.

Here’s what I want you to do:

1) Copy this list into your blog or journal, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out any items that you would never consider eating.

The Omnivore’s Hundred:
1. Venison - yes, in jerky form
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros - Yes, although not a Mexican food fan
4. Steak tartare
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding - In sausage form, until I found out what It was made of.
7. Cheese fondue - YUM!
8. Carp - Too muddy-tasting
9. Borscht - I'm a nice, Jewish girl. Need I say more?
10. Baba ghanoush - Baba yes!
11. Calamari - With ponzu sauce is to die for!
12. Pho - Not yet, but I definitely will.
13. PB&J sandwich - I think every kid in America lives on this stuff.
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart - With sauerkraut, please!
16. Epoisses - Never heard of it.
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes - *HIC*!
19. Steamed pork buns - Chinatown, here we come!
20. Pistachio ice cream - Love the flavor, hate the color.
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras - Ahhhh, Paris!
24. Rice and beans - Listening to great jazz.
25. Brawn, or head cheese - No how, no way!
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters - Not a fan, but I have slipped a few down.
29. Baklava - Okay, now I'm hungry!
30. Bagna cauda - A tradition at every Christmas Eve get-together.
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl - San Francisco, baby!
33. Salted lassi - Good, but not as great as the mint!
34. Sauerkraut - Anytime, anywhere!!!!
35. Root beer float - **SLURP**!
36. Cognac with a fat cigar - Lose the cigar.
37. Clotted cream tea - Ahhh, good times...good times!
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O - No, but would love to try it.
39. Gumbo
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects - Probably already have without knowing it. Blech!
43. Phaal - WTF?!
44. Goat’s milk - Yes, even made soap from it! Aren't I clever?
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more - Too strong for me -- or my wallet.
46. Fugu - Curious, but not stupid.
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel - Unagi! *drools*
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut - Totally unimpressed.
50. Sea urchin - Tastes like Janitor-in-a-Drum cleanser.
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi - Wouldn't be a Bento without it!
53. Abalone - Cheew-eee!
54. Paneer
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal - Ain't America great?
56. Spaetzle - Yavol!
57. Dirty gin martini - Not yet.
58. Beer above 8% ABV - Not a beer drinker.
59. Poutine - Never heard of it.
60. Carob chips - I don't care what anyone says. These do not taste "just like chocolate"!
61. S’mores - Every chance possible, as a kid.
62. Sweetbreads - Another one of those icky things I should probably try.
63. Kaolin - ???
64. Currywurst - Never seen there around here.
65. Durian - Not allowed into the Mainland. Did try to find it in Hawaii.
66. Frogs’ legs - Tastes just like (tiny) chicken (legs).
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake - Yes, yes, yes & yes!
68. Haggis - Very tasty. Not at all as gross as you'd expect.
69. Fried plantain - OMG!
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette - So not my thing.
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini - Not a huge caviar fan -- except in sushi.
73. Louche absinthe - Would love to try some. Got any?
74. Gjetost, or brunost - Translation, please?
75. Roadkill - You must be joking...right?
76. Baijiu - No clue what this is.
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail - It's the garlicky buttersauce that make it.
79. Lapsang souchong - I love tea.
80. Bellini - Ready, willing and able.
81. Tom yum - Yum is the word!
82. Eggs Benedict - Heart-attack on a plate!
83. Pocky - Fun, but for the kids.
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant. - My wallet holds me back.
85. Kobe beef - Poverty prevents.
86. Hare - With a mustard-cream sauce. Oh. My. God!
87. Goulash - Okay, I guess.
88. Flowers
89. Horse - My daughter would disown me!
90. Criollo chocolate - Have never seen it, otherwise I definitely would!
91. Spam - Even have some in my pantry right now!
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa
94. Catfish - MUDDY!
95. Mole poblano - Oooh, baby!
96. Bagel and lox - See #9 above.
97. Lobster Thermidor - Honestly don't remember.
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee - Not a coffee drinker.
100. Snake - Are you nuts?!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

The Countdown

Here's hoping.

Tomorrow and Monday I will find out if I go from semifinalist to finalist in two important screenwriting competitions.

I could really use the validation. Especially since the agency that loved my writing, said I have "a way with words that is rarely seen", and wanted to talk has since disappeared off the face of the map.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Law(suits) of the (Hollywood)Land

From Deadline Hollywood: Not only did the over age-40 TV writers settle with ICM but also the old Broder Kurland Webb agency which ICM acquired in 2006. How much moolah did it take? The $4.5 million I reported, paid for by insurance. According to the consent decree filed today, the settlement talks over the 8-year-old age discrimination class action lawsuits began in November 2007 after both parties reviewed and evaluated demographic data including television writer employment by age, earnings, and studio and agency representation during the liability period. But here's what I really love about the consent decree: ICM must now provide training on at least a biannual basis to recognize and prevent age discrimination to all its personnel involved in screening potential TV writer clients. ICM even has to take attendance at each training session. ICM also has to pay $50,000 to sit on an independent task force to examine its representation practices, and to participate conditionally in a job relief program that will promote the top 25% of older TV writers based on script evaluations by a neutral panel qualified experts.

Wow, the agents are now the older writers' bitches. What a great day for Hollywood.

Especially now that 10,000 TV writers say they've "penned a happy ending" to the first of 23 class action age discrimination lawsuits by obtaining both dollars and programmatic relief designed to enhance work opportunities. Still unresolved are the other class actions in Los Angeles Superior Court against the major TV networks and production studios, including ABC, CBS, Disney, Fox, NBC Universal, Columbia, Warner Brothers and talent agencies Creative Artists, Endeavor, Paradigm and William Morris. Judge Emile Elias is expected to conduct a hearing later this year to grant final approval on the ICM deal. Class members may obtain claim forms from plaintiffs' counsel upon the issuance of the settlement notice, but monetary awards to class members will not be made until at least thirty days after the deadline to file claims and approval by the Court. The settled case, Edwards, et al v. International Creative Management, Inc. alleged that the more than 150 named plaintiffs and others like them - television writers who were aged 40 and older after October 22, 1996 - were victims of systematic age discrimination by talent agents, who aided and abetted networks and studios by refusing to represent and refer older writers for work at the production studios. "The settlement agreement with ICM provides these talented television writers with a fair resolution to their claims," said Steve Sprenger of Sprenger + Lang, lead trial counsel for the plaintiffs. "However, we still have a lot of work ahead of us to get these older writers the programmatic and monetary relief they deserve."

Monday, August 18, 2008

Hollywood's undying contempt love for the older writer

From Deadline Hollywood: EXCLUSIVE: Slowly but surely, a group of over age-40 TV writers alleging age discrimination by Hollywood networks, studios, production companies and talent agencies have been winning their lawsuits. Their latest victory took place last Thursday when the California Court Of Appeals issued a ruling on discovery in their favor. As a result, one of the defendants has now decided to become the first to settle with the writers. I'm told it's ICM, and I understand that the other big Hollywood talent agencies are none too happy about the tenpercentery breaking ranks and "going rogue", in the words of one rival agency owner. (Won't that be a fun session at the next meeting of the Association of Talent Agents?) Insiders inform me that ICM's settlement amount is $4.5 million and will be covered by the agency's insurance. The deal is done, and all that's left to finish is the paperwork, I hear. Now that ICM has taken this seriously, look for the other agencies -- at least those with insurance -- to get in line to settle, too.

About two dozen class action lawsuits were originally filed 8 years ago in federal court in Los Angeles by 150+ older writers claiming pervasive age discrimination since the early 1980s. The allegations included violations of the federal Age Discrimination In Employment Act, the Labor Management Relations Act, and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act. Targeted were the then six television networks, including CBS, NBC, ABC and Fox; studios including Walt Disney Co, Fox Entertainment, Universal and Paramount; 12 production companies; and 11 talent agencies, including William Morris, CAA, ICM and Endeavor. Among those taking up the writers' cause has been the AARP which joined the class action specialist Sprenger + Lang law firm. Since 2000, the cases have wound their way through California state and federal lower courts and appeals courts with some setbacks but also much success for the writers. Ultimately, the outcome of these cases could affect thousands of unemployed or underemployed older writers and help change the way TV deals are done in Hollywood and elsewhere.


Thursday, August 07, 2008

Grab a Kleenex

(You have been warned)