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THE DO’S AND DON’T’S OF PAING

DON'T: Take the "walkies" assignment On most shoots, some poor PA is in charge of making sure every Walkie Talkie gets returned. Those walkies are worth more than your life, and there's always some teamster that goes home early and leaves his walkie in his truck. If you hear someone asking for a volunteer for this job, subtly look away like you have something more important on your mind. DO: Take that run! Going on runs (driving somewhere to pick something up) is great, because you get to get away from set. On a run, DO: take the scenic route, pad your mileage sheet, find receipts floating around the Rite-Aid parking lot, turn them in, and deduct the total’s amount from petty cash. Fortunes have been built in this town by this very method! DON'T: Volunteer for pro-bono office PA duty the day after shooting. One day, someone will ask this of you and say, “do us this solid, we'll hook you up down the road.” They are lying. No one’s gonna “hook you up” or give you a chance “down the road.” They will forget your name within three days. Acts of kindness come rarely to PAs, and when they do, they come without rhyme or reason, like prostate cancer.

DON’T: Tell anyone your name. When someone knows your name, they’ll ask you to do all their bullshit work. If someone asks, turn you head away, put one finger in your ear and your forefinger of your other hand up in the air. This is the universal sign for, “Hold on, I’m getting a call.” Now slowly back away. DO: Smoke cigarettes. Smoking cigarettes is the best way to network in Hollywood. It puts you in an exclusive club that often includes the most powerful people on set. It’s also the most acceptable way to take a break- more so than eating or childbirth. DON’T: Talk to grips. Most of these entitled union pricks are convicted felons who would sooner stab you in a bar fight than tell you what a C-stand is.

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