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Avia S-199 in Israeli Air Force Service

A night of schmooze

I spent last night at the latest Montreal Film Group (MFG) soiree, meant to be an evening of informative presentations by film-related organizations. The room was packed, and I met several people. It was impossible not to, even for me.

At the same time, the size of the crowd proved a disadvantage. About half the attendees showed up to socialize, and rudely yammered on during the presentations. Granted, most of the presentations could be summed up as “Hi, I’m Jane. Go to our Web site for more information.” But show some courtesy, people.

I think Ezra and Val have reached a fork in the MFG road. With more than 500 members to manage, they will have to decide to take their group along the path to social club or helpful organization, or at least they will have to define the events more precisely. I would not have wanted to speak last night, and the noise bothered a few of the people onstage who did.

I met several people from Alex’s parties, including Doug Taylor and the seemingly omnipresent Elana.

I ran into Josa again, and she remembered my name – my last name, not my first name, which was on my nametag. In one of those degree of separation deals that seems so out there until you realize that only 274 anglos still ive in Montreal, I chatted with Geoffrey Uloth.

Geoff works the IITS/AV counter in Concordia’s CC building. For the two school years previous to this one, for which the Journalism Department moved into new quarters, I taught my courses in the CC building and twice a week, I would borrow a projector from Geoff. I had no idea he was a filmmaker until last night.

That’s a nice coincidence, but the twist is that Elvi’s band, the Disciples of Ursula Big Band, contributed to the soundtrack on a film by Geoff’s twin brother David.

There. Now that story is all O. Henry on your ass.

I met several new people as well. I kept bumping into Ridge, an Aussie who was clearly having too much fun working the crowd. Another gentleman, Emru, has a life that parallels mine. He’s a freelance journalist and editor, runs a hobbyist history Web site, and blogs (all his links are available there). Who knows, he might turn out to be a friend.

Most intriguingly, Phillippe came over to chat as my evening wound down. He’s looking for a collaborator on a screenplay. His pitch seemed right up my alley, setting-wise, and I can only hope that he’ll appreciate the upcoming revision of “Sheep’s End” as a writing sample.

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