Feeds:
Posts
Comments

img_6727

My third and final batch of hot sauce (habanero, shallots, garlic, salt, pepper, smoked Chilean merken pepper, organic apple puree, apple cider, honey, brown sugar, and apple cider vinegar) is a lip-smacking (in both senses of the word) masterpiece.  It’s a scorcher…but delicious as well.  A true culinary capsicum achievement.  I don’t know whether to eat it by the spoonful or smear into the eyes of my enemy.  It’s THAT good!

img_6730

Today, I had lunch with Dark Matter Episode 305 director (and Bitten Executive Producer) J.B. Sugar, a guy who’s as gracious and good-hearted as he is talented. It was a sit-down to review his experience on the show which, I’m happy to report, was nothing but great.  Like his episode, a manic adventure chock full of action, humor, bittersweet character moments, and the Android’s most bizarre undercover guise yet!

On our way, we happened across this familiar fellow adorning some sidewalk art in support of the local Canadian film scene…

img_6732

Why, yes, it’s none other than Cowboy Bruce McDonald, indie film auteur and occasional Dark Matter (Episode 107, 202, 206, 302, and 312 so far!) director.

the-android-relaxing

Speaking of the Android – she is also enjoying a well-deserved break from all the shipboard mayhem.  Pictured above in relaxed mode.

Hey, who feels like voting for another episode title?

img_6701

Another day, another hot sauce.  This one is a cascabel pepper and yellow bell pepper base with shallots, garlic, salt, apple cider vinegar, pear juice, honey, dehydrated organic Japanese pepper, and dijon mustard.  Surprisingly, a touch hotter than the cayenne pepper-based sauce I made yesterday.  But it will no doubt pale in comparison to tomorrow’s habanero-based hot sauce.

P.S. My new-found appreciation for things spicy comes from reading this book by Finnish author Johanna Sinisalo:

1

” Set in an alternative historical present, in a “eusistocracy”—an extreme welfare state—that holds public health and social stability above all else, it follows a young woman whose growing addiction to illegal chili peppers leads her on an adventure into a world where love, sex, and free will are all controlled by the state.”

My favorite read in recent memory.

img_6698 img_6697

Today, we brought Suji in for her first training session.  I know, I know.  She’s 11.  But she has a few bad habits – like barking at other dogs, people, balloons, cars, carrier bags, the occasional light reflection, and poopy bags being blown about by the wind.  In all fairness, she WAS raised in a barn.

Two days into my horror-fest and I’m four movies deep.  Last night it was Hush, about a deaf woman being stalked by a deranged killer (well-directed but there were a suspect character motivations that gave me pause).  This afternoon, it was Under the Shadow, an Iranian movie about a mother and daughter living in an abandoned apartment complex that may be haunted by a djinn (interesting but a little slow).  And then, tonight, it was The Witch, about a 17th century New England family targeted by supernatural forces (eerie and unsettling; the best of the bunch so far).

Thanks to everyone who has sent us well-wishes for Bubba.  He remains in good spirits.  Today, he actually walked the three blocks to the pet shop!

img_6692

Then he ran out of steam, so we ubered it back.

screen-shot-2017-02-18-at-6-01-01-pm

There are still some rewrites to do, a couple of polishes to finish, and a series finale to break but, for now, I’m taking it easy.  For now, it’s all about the dogs.

img_6660

We broke out the stroller for the dogs while Lulu managed to limp her way to the dog park long enough to say hit to all the dog owners before calling it a day.  Suji got to put on her wheels and motor around the park as well while Bubba, as usual, preferred to spend quality time with mom –

img_6642

So, we’re wrestling with indecision regarding Bubba.  The oncologist recommended a drug called Palladia which is a chemotheraphy medication.  It seemed simple enough: give him a single pill every other day with his meal, alternating with Prednisone, a corticosteroid and anti-inflammatory.  But, when we got home and read the special handling instructions, Akemi instantly had second thoughts.  Always use gloves when handling the pill.  Always wear gloves when cleaning up after your dog and be sure to quickly bag and dispose of your dog’s feces.  Keep pregnant women, children, and other dogs away from your dog’s waste…which, on the surface, seems simple enough unless you consider urine which isn’t really covered in the handout.  Also, we have to other dogs.  What are we to do if Bubba has an accident in the house?  Do we have to start crating him?

Sure, there are answers, but they all lead to one big question: Is it worth it?  We tried to do everything we could for our boy Maximus and he was pretty damn miserable in the end.  Maybe the Palladia will buy Bubba more time, but will it be good time?

So far, he seems in good spirits and his appetite remains typically voracious, but Akemi has noticed changes in him.  He still gets excited at the prospect of going for walks but, the boy who used to love his lengthy strolls now only manages half a block before we have to pick him up and carry him home.  He’s had accidents in the apartment, once even finding Akemi before doing so as if trying to send her a message.  He doesn’t so much nap as he does drift in and out, which makes us wonder what kind of discomfort he is experiencing.  Akemi says she feels like, every days she’s losing him a different way.

I’m looking into some homeopathic and alternate treatments as well.  Chinese herbs.  Mushrooms.  Someone even recommended cannabis oil.  As for the Palladia, we’ll make a decision on that after the weekend.

img_6665-1

I made another batch of hot sauce today using cayenne peppers, vidalia onions, garlic, salt, apple cider vinegar, apple cider, apple puree, brown sugar, hot smoked Chilean merken pepper, organic tomatoes.  Pretty damn tasty.  Akemi thought it mighty explosive (She describes it as “painful on the throat”) but I found it just so-so.  Tomorrow, I make another batch, but this time with the fresh habaneros I picked up from the farmer’s market.

I kicked off 9 day horror-fest with a viewing of The Invitation.  Although I guessed where it was going, I liked how it eventually got there.  A promising start.

photo courtesy of Roger Cross

photo courtesy of Roger Cross

And that’s a wrap on Dark Matter Season 3 Production Phase II.  The third and final phase commences a little over a week from now.  Until then, it’ll be R&R&R (Rest and Relaxation and Reading) for me.

img_3938

Unfortunately, not everyone made it to the hiatus.  But those that did have earned a well-deserved break from 7:30 a.m. crew calls and 7:30 p.m. wraps.

img_6628

A rare shot of the bridge from fake space.  This is usually where the actors kick back between scenes.

(Security feed playback courtesy of 1st Assistant Art Director Sumeet Vats and 2nd Assistant Art Director Victor Mare)

Hey, do me a favor and keep an eye on The Raza nest cam while we’re away!

img_6570

“It’s like when you make ganache and you put it in the fridge and when you take it out it’s an hour too early and it’s not yet set.  That’s what it was like.”

Akemi describing Bubba’s stool sample this morning.

img_6576

Today, we took Bubba a very relaxed Bubba (he’s already on vacation!) to see his oncologist.  This was the result of our meeting –

img_6585

In a nutshell, no to chemo but yes to targeted therapy which is comprised of a single pill (Palladia, which sounds like a great scifi world) given every second day. In a perfect world, it will target the tumors in Bubba’s lung and not the person charged with  administering said pill since the instructions explicitly caution anyone handling it to wear gloves while doing so!  We’ll alternate the Palladia with Prednisone, an anti-inflammatory.  I’m also going to look into a few promising-looking home therapy treatments.

img_6591

Suji and Bubba.  They’re like an old married couple.

img_6597

Despite her recent injury, even Lulu gets in on the action.

img_6614

Meanwhile, on Dark Matter, it was business as usual in the Raza underbelly.

Finally, presenting Dark Matter’s diabolical and deadly Misaki Han like you’ve never seen her before…

Ellen Wong Flips Out:

img_6498

“Is your dog relaxing or in distress?”asked the receptionist, prompting Akemi and I to swing a look over to the shiba inu sprawled out on the floor by a row of seats at the back.

“Relaxing,”replied her owner.  “She hasn’t eaten in five days.”

Five days?!!!  If any of my dogs skipped a single meal, it would be enough to set off the alarm bells that would send me off to the vet.

“Oncology triage to the front, please,”we heard the receptionist call over the P.A.

It was 9:45 a.m. and we were at the clinic, taking advantage of a late cancellation to get Bubba seen.  His cough, and the outlook, were looking progressively worse.  He’d had blood work done the previous night and this ultrasound would presumably confirm the worst.

And, this afternoon, when the results came in, they did.  The biopsy all but confirmed the cancer diagnosis and its advancement, between the results of the ultrasound and the x-rays taken the other day, suggested it was aggressive.  The doctor prescribed some cough suppressants to make Bubba more comfortable. Tomorrow, we go in to see an oncologist to discuss our options.

img_6509

I realize that fourteen and a half years is great for a pug and it’s almost two and a half years more than Maximus had, but about two years less than Jelly had.  Still, it’s hard and I had a great talk about this with Anthony Lemke this afternoon, all about family, relationships, and tough decisions.  Not sure how much time we’re going to have with the little guy, but we’re going to make the most of the time we have left.

Because of this morning’s appointment, my two awesome lieutenants were on set to cover for me as usual – Co-Executive Producer Ivon Bartok was on second unit, while Co-Executive Producer Lawren Bancroft-Wilson was on main.  I thank them for stepping up

Some Dark Matter-related goodies…

ryo-and-ash

Emperor Ryo Ishida (Alex Mallari Jr.) and his man Ash (Michael Reventar) – photo c/o Michael Reventar.

img_4223

Finish him! 

Security drone c/o VFX Supervisor Lawren Bancroft-Wilson (concept design by Henry Fong, modelling by Ethereal Assets, shots by CVD VFX)

Let’s celebrate Valentine’s Day (except in Pakistan where it’s apparently been outlawed) with a brand new episode title!  Here are the results of yesterday’s fan poll:

screen-shot-2017-02-14-at-5-53-56-pm

Wow.  This one wasn’t even close.  I honestly thought “This Galaxy’s Most Notorious” would have put in a better showing, but what do I know?  That’s why I just write and produce the episodes and leave the naming to those more qualified.

img_6440

The “helmet” for Episode 307 is a glorious thing.  Gorgeous workmanship by On Set Key Props Lisa Amaral Wright.

creator-pod-1

A few more pods for your consideration c/o Set Designer Karl Crosby.

pod-4

If and when I get that new military SF series off the ground, I’ve already reserved Karl’s seat on the hero destroyer.

img_6456

A costume design sketch from, appropriately enough, Costume Designer Noreen Landry.

img_6473

Director (and Dark Matter Stunt Coordinator) John Stead calling the shots.

img_6465

And ordering our the new crew (?!).

fc-comm

Incoming transmission.  But who’s calling?  Commander Nieman, I presume?  (Playback still c/o 1st Assistant Art Director Sumeet Vats).

img_5793

Our apartment is now a veterinary clinic.  Poor Lulu, laid up by a paw injury enjoys some R&R.

This is poor Bubba and his hacking old man’s cough.  Based on the x-rays, the early prognosis isn’t good, but we’ll learn more after tomorrow’s ultrasound.

img_5804

Despite this, he seems happy during the day and his appetite is good.  This afternoon, he hit the park with doggy uber (aka Akemi).

Tonight, Akemi and I celebrate Valentine’s Day by taking Bubba for some blood tests, eating leftover pork, and watching Gail Harvey’s director’s cut of Episode 306!  Pretty romantic.

%d bloggers like this: