Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Chapter 23: Let Go of Rationality

Alison meets with Gavin, the actor Carey wants to cast as Dream for his next movie in her office.

"The thing is, I'm not an actor," Gavin explains.

Most of them aren't, Alison thinks, but try telling them that. This one, however, doesn't even have a SAG card. And the fact that Carey picked him up at one of Lady LaLa's parties doesn't bode well.

"Carey was very insistent that we sign you," Alison explains. She  doesn't always get her bosses' choices, but he's never made a bad movie, "He must have seem something, some spark of talent. I'm sure you'll be fine."

"I don't even know that this is what I want..." Gavin wavers. He's only here because Tori insisted, suddenly in love with the idea of being a movie star's girlfriend since Carey approached them at LaLa's party.

"This is serious business," Alison warns, "I got you set up with a union membership. You sign up for this, you become a professional actor. And this movie will be your life for as long as it's in production."

She had hoped to warn him off with her advice, but instead it seemed to firm his resolve. "All right, I'm going to trust that this is my dharma. This has to be happening for a reason, right?" Gavin says, "I'm in. I'm fully committed."

Great, Alison thinks, for the starring role, Carey has cast not just an unknown actor, but an untrained one with no clue how the business works. He's going to need a lot of hand holding, and guess whose job that will be.

Alison joins Carey later in his house. Watching movies with him is always illuminating.

"This Gavin is an artist, you know, not an actor," Alison says, hating to interrupt the screening. But work is work. "Are you sure you want to cast him in the starring role? That's a really big risk you're taking."

"Alison, the most important thing you'll learn from me is that if you don't take risks, you die as a director," Carey says "Any project, any actor, any script that's absolutely safe is an absolute piece of crap. There is no real success without the very real chance of failure at every moment."

Alison absorbs every word. He's totally batshit crazy, but he's also the most brilliant director in Hollywood. He drives her like a mule, but what she gets in return, what she learns from working for him, it will all be worth it when she's sitting in the director's chair.

"There are times when your deepest instincts will tell you what is right, Alison," Carey continues his lesson for the day, "Your reason will fight it, logic will demand you are wrong; you have to learn to turn that off, let go of rationality and go with your gut. It will never fail you."

Maybe he's let go of a little too much of his rationality, Alison thinks, but his movies are undeniably genius. Even the ones that aren't box office success become cult classics; there's just something about a Carey Burden film that speaks directly to your soul. Alison wonders if she'll have to be as crazy as he is to ever be as brilliant a director.

"One more thing," Carey says as she prepares to head back into the office, "I had a vision, and I need to go to Nepal for a month. I'll need someone to take care of Grok."

Grok being his dog. Alison had asked him once what the story was behind the name, and he just laughed and said 'You may not grok Grok, but Grok groks you.' Probably fucking with her; Carey likes messing with people's minds. 

"When are you leaving?" Alison asks.


Seriously? They're in the middle of casting and pre-production for his next movie, and he's swanning off to some Asian country for--what? A vision? Batshit crazy. "So, by 'somebody' to take care of Grok, you mean me? I don't know who else I can get on such short notice."

"Could you, Alison? I'd feel so much better knowing you were staying here."

Alison rolls her eyes. Manipulative bastard. Like she has time to babysit his damn dog. "My girlfriend is really good with animals. And with my schedule, I'd need the help," she suggests.

"Sure, bring your girlfriend to stay here with you," Carey says with a smile, "I'll be leaving tomorrow afternoon."

Alison spends the rest of the day in the office, making sure she gets everything taken care of that will need Carey's signature or approval before he's out of town for a month. It isn't until well after sunset that she's free to meet Kelly at the Grind.

"I was beginning to think you wouldn't show," Kelly says, not looking up from her drink when Alison approaches.

"I'm sorry, Kel, but..."

"But work, I know. It's always work with you. Pre-production, production, post-production, you never get like an hour to yourself."

"That's not true," Alison protests, "Sometimes I even get two hours of sleep a night."

"Well, you're here now," Kelly says, and grabs her for a long kiss.

"So, Carey's going out of town for a month. We have to stay at his house. You have to take care of his dog."

"Oh, great," Kelly says, "My lifelong dream is to be a celebrity dog's personal assistant."

Alison suggests they stop talking about work and dance.

Kelly may not be the best dancer, but she's always interesting.

As the bartender calls out the last call, Kelly drags Alison out behind the club. 

"We have a bed at home, you know," Alison quips as Kelly presses her up against the wall.

"It's more fun when there's a chance of getting caught."

"Naughty girl."


  1. Yes Carey, I'll let go of all rational and logical thought. Whatever you say. <3

    Also I really like Alison's character. I wasn't too sure at the beginning with Gavin but by the end she grew on me. She seems like one of your more "normal" characters. (Whatever the hell normal even means, I don't know).

    Oh and Kelly's hair is kick ass. That is all.

    1. I didn't mention it in this chapter, but Alison is a native NYer (it will come up, but it's not some huge spoiler to tell you now) and I created her in part exemplify the contrast between NY and L.A. While Carey embodies the stereotyical flakiness and flightiness of the Angeleno, Alison is down to earth and very direct, and much more cynical.

  2. Alison and Kelly. <3 LOVE.IT.

    Also, is Grok a reference to Stranger in a Strange Land? If so, I luff you... so, so much. Not creepy at all. Nope.

    1. Yes, very much a Stranger in a Strange Land reference. =D
      I'm totally a scifi geek. *accepts your creepy, geeky luff*

  3. I love Carey! He makes me lol, and his dog is adorable! And the whole "I had a vision so I must fly off to Nepal now." Haha, love it! I kind of feel bad for Alison though, having to be his practical side. It doesn't seem like she minds though.

    Alison and Kelly make an awesome couple. Who was Kelly cloned from, if you don't mind my asking? Her nose kind of reminds me of Wolf/Aymeri, but I'm usually wrong about these sorts of things.

    Great chapter! =)

    1. Thanks! I love Carey and Alison together, too. They work well together, even being such total opposites.

      Kelly is cloned from Sundari McDermott, a 3rd generation spare from my very first legacy. Her nose comes from Thornton Wolff of SV, actually, as he was her grandfather. I had that nose up through I think gen 5 of that legacy.

  4. I always really liked Alison. She has that no nonsense personality that I imagine it takes to keep the dreamers like Carey from floating away into space (or Nepal) and never returning. I mean really, even with Carey's genius, would the movies get made without Alison? I like Kelly's sassy makeover, too!

    Grok is seriously adorable! :D Much cuter than he was in Sims 1 - I need the Sims 3 Pets expansion, I'd love to have creatures running around again. Hehe, if Alison read Stranger in a Strange Land, I think she'd realize she's not too far off target with the whole messing with your mind...Martians and Jubal will do that to you.

    1. That's definitely true, Alison really does keep Carey grounded and takes care of the business that gets his movies made.
      Kelly really needed a makeover. She was one of my original characters in Sims 1, but most of her story was just wandering around the downtown lots I was building, and her story really didn't get going until she met Alison. Rather than try to recreate that, I just created a new Kelly specially tailored to Alison, who was always the stronger character, though she came into the story later. And who knows, now that Kelly is a whole new person, maybe she'll develop a new story line for herself.

      The pets are much cuter. And I love that there are two sizes of dog instead of just the small dogs. And thanks again for reminding me about Grok!

  5. Ooh, I'd love to see more storylines with Kelly. She had such an interesting back story (although all of your characters do) so it would be really cool to see more of her. And her dancing...hehehe.

    Oh you're welcome about Grok! Glad to be helpful! He's so fluffy and adorable. I've always loved that line "You may not grok Grok, but he groks you!" That's probably because I come from a family where my parents would say in ordinary conversation, "I grok you speak rightly," LOL. That is so cool that you can get large dogs and small dogs in Pets, as opposed to Sims 1, where they were all what my mother refers to as "rat dogs."

  6. Allison is funny to me lol calling her director batshit crazy. I like that she takes care of what she needs to though. If he is as talented as she thinks she can learn a lot from him.

    Kelly seems to hate her job though; sounds like it gets in the way of their relationship quite often. It's sad but it's nice she is still trying to be there for her girl :)

  7. It's definitely hard to maintain relationships with people who work on movies. They have ridiculously demanding schedules. And Alison is very career oriented, so she's a little more devoted to the job than anything else.

  8. I absolutely love Alison, I may ask permission to borrow her. I think she would make an awesome addition to my story. I also love how she thinks Carey is batshit crazy, but of course would never tell him.

    Loved this Chapter.

    1. Thanks! No problem, I will package her up for you later. I look forward to seeing what you do with her. =D