Invisible Mikey: Most Evil Job Ever

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by Invisible Mikey

Some of my readers urged me to write about another odd job I held once, but at the time I deferred because it was an unusual experience of real evil, the kind that swims in the dark river of sludge beneath all capitalism. I did it because at the time I wanted more income badly.  However, no one needs money badly enough to do this.  It was the desire for money that seduced me into doing it.  It was the desire to have a clean soul that got me back out.  For eighteen months, I helped make INFOMERCIALS.  (You may scream now.)

When I went to interview, I was still a “human search engine” by profession (seeOddest Jobs Ever Pt 4).  The interview was in a nice condominium which should have been a red flag, but my curiosity often wins in these situations.  The initial job was billed as “office manager”.  There wasn’t an office, and the manager was a nice old lady doing the books.  I had done simple bookkeeping, so I thought I could handle it.  How much commerce could be taking place in an apartment?  I could sense that the old lady and the man who interviewed me didn’t get along, and you would need to in such a close environment.  The man who interviewed me was gregarious, charming, enthusiastic and nicely dressed.  I didn’t see the horns and tail.  They must be removable.  (Eerie music cue goes here.) read article

Invisible Mikey: The Village Martinet

The On-Camera Martin Clunes
The On-Camera Martin Clunes

British TV shows are better than American ones.  I’m sorry, there’s no other position to take. They don’t try to crank out 26 episodes a season, like we do here.  When you do that, you are guaranteeing that at least 10 of the episodes will be “meh”, even if all the others are good.  It takes a lot of work to make a superior hour of filmed television.  Aside from the necessity of great scripts, the days are very long when in production, at least 12 hours, often longer.  It’s too much of a grind to survive and still end up with a jewel at the end.  The Brits have it figured out.  Make 6-8 episodes/season, so they’ll all be good.  Not only that, but it leaves the actors free to have a real life, or perform in plays or even to be in a different series at the same time if they wish.  It’s civilized.

I’m totally hooked on another series about city folk moving to the country.  It’s an ITV production called Doc Martin that’s shown here in Port Townsend but not where I used to live.  You can, however, see three season’s worth of episodes (21 shows) in full 420p, 16×9 aspect ratio at hulu.com. Because I loved it from the moment I saw it, I went back to see it from the beginning.  It fits what I wrote about in the previous article on Green Acres.  The city guy is the fish out of water, in this case in the fictional coastal Cornish village of Portwenn.

The show is filmed in beautiful Port Isaac, and is about a once-successful surgeon from London who becomes a GP in a sleepy fishing village because he suddenly can’t stand the sight of blood.  The Dr’s name is Martin Ellingham (Ellingham is an anagram of the last name of show creator Dominic Minghella), and the locals refuse to call him anything other than “Doc Martin”, which he finds disrespectful.  The doc is a surly curmudgeon, has no bedside manner whatsoever, and is constantly in conflict with the villagers, except for his Auntie Joan (Waiting for God’s Stephanie Cole), a long-time resident.  This is a dance of dominance between the doc and the locals, so in an inspired choice the show uses catchy tango music for its theme and underscore. read article