A Bit About Me

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Along with my daily duties as founder and head writer of HumorMeOnline.com, in 2003, I took the Grand Prize in the Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest (also known as the "It Was a Dark and Stormy Night" competition). I've also been a contributor to "The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson" and the web's "The Late Show with David Letterman". I also occupy my time writing three blogs, "Blogged Down at the Moment", "Brit Word of the Day" and "Production Numbers"...and my off-time is spent contemplating in an "on again/off again" fashion...my feable attempts at writing any one of a dozen books. I would love to write professionally one day...and by that I mean "actually get a paycheck".

01 August 2010

A Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On

"Bigfoot started it, dammit!"

"You mean sightings of paranormal things, Mariann?"


"The whole Sasquatch craze of the 70s, Mariann?"


"The idea for Chewbacca's costume, Mariann?"


"Then spit it out already...what??"

"The shaky camera technique."

Personally, I'm getting a bit more than miffed at the whole thing. It seems I can't watch a show which doesn't employ some of this annoying jumping thing. Films have it, television shows have it - in fact documentaries are using it to the extreme.

I've never been schooled in the cinematic arts, but you can bet I can qualify as a camera operator. I mean, think about it...how much knowledge of being able to jerk around a camera is there? Are there actually "Less Than Steady Camerawork" degrees being handed out? Can I get one online because it seems to me I already qualify...maybe I should add it to my resume - it's not like I couldn't do it, right?

And those paranormal shows with people looking for ghosts and Chupacabras have taken this "Blair Witch Project"-styled theme and ran with it.

In fact I don't think there's anything filmed IN those shows which isn't taking you on a nauseating roller coaster ride...it's annoying and I can't stand it. It hurts my eyes and gives me migraines...I also keep thinking I'm going to go into seizure mode worse than listening to Mary Hart's voice.

And, if that wasn't bad enough, who's the idiot who decided each of these shows would also have the "night camera" going? I'm tired of seeing things in shades of blue. I'm tired of seeing their eyeballs glowing. I'm tired of seeing people toting flashlights wherever they go...if I want to do that, I'll watch an episode of "The X-Files". At least they were able to shoot it with a guy who knew how to operate a damn camera.

I mean, heck I'd be able to scare up the whole viewing public of my ghost show if all I did was jump up and down in the dark going, "Oh my God...did you SEE that???"

"NO! I can't! You're filming in the dark, you hop-scotching moron!"

Every single episode I see advertised looks like every single previous episode I've seen advertised. Do they ever catch a ghost? Do they ever find the "Jersey Devil"? Has anyone ever filmed one of these episodes without a camera falling over and someone screaming in traumatized fashion about it? It's on a tri-pod and you set it up on the side of a mountain...ya think perhaps maybe it MIGHT possibly fall over???

Consequently, I refuse to be lured into watching any more shows with the words "Ghost Hunters" or "MonsterQuest" in the title.

But, while these may get my goat...and not in the "Goat Sucker" kind of way, what takes the cake is on my favourite and unfortunately rapidly "Jumping the Shark" network: "The History Channel".

Stay tuned for it...in my next blog.

I didn't mean to insult anyone's intelligence, but I linked a couple phrases...just in case.


  1. I hear ya Mariann, not only does it makes my head and eyes hurt, the shakiness makes my stomach ache.

  2. You know what makes me hurt? It's waiting for an update on HMO. You say you try to update once per day. How's that workin' out for ya? More like once per month. (provided you do another since 3 July)

    Oh btw, I'm not who you think I am so don't call me up later to complain. oops.

  3. I generally avoid that type of show just on principle. But the few times I've seen that technique, it's made me kinda queasy.

  4. A little bit of shaky goes a long, long way. But I didn't learn that from films. I learned it from my Uncle Bob. He was--is--an alcoholic. Probably works as a cameraman. That would explain a whole lot.

  5. Thank you. I am so damned tired of having producers and directors attempt to manipulate my emotions via crappy camera work. Just show me some damn film, give me an accompanying voice-over, and let me make up my non-nauseated mind.

    Can't wait for the piece about The History Channel (which becomes less about history every week, it seems.)

  6. When "NYPD Blue" first aired, they used that jumpy-swaying technique on purpose! (I even think they were nominated for an Emmy for it - ugh.) It made me dizzy and nauseous, more so because David Caruso was in it. I could only watch that show after a couple of merlots.