August 11th, 2001


A Call to Bake: The Conspirator's Journal

One of the best ways to do research is to find the people who have access to information, but not enough prestige to gain loyalty or conspicuousness. The way information flows willy-nilly in the world - as it must in this world - you can find out horrible secrets just by offering the right person a batch of home-made cookies.

Finding these people, and making batches of excellent cookies, are two paramount skill to the modern conspirator.

I watched a movie last night ("The Score", with Ed Norton, Ted Knight, and Mr. E.T.) and watched the credits afterwards, as I always do. And, as I always do, I noticed that so many of the positions are shared by people who share a last name. I'd always assumed that this was because of rampant nepotism in the movie industry, but why be lazy about these things? So late last night I packed a change of clothes, some white chocolate, and my personal cookie dough blend, and headed down to LAX.

I just got back about 45 minutes ago, and it turns out the "rampant nepotism" theory was only partially correct.

At Paramount Studios, the reason there's so many crew members who share a last name is, in fact, because they're family.

At University Studios, though, it's because the studio contractually requires their employees to legally change last names to one of a small set of available names, to be easier to track.

At Columbia Studios, cloning is involves. I couldn't get the rest of the details, but there's something about the occult significance of the Confederate dollar in these somewhere too.

That's all the studios I could find today, and I had to get back. I'd really appreciate it if you all could help me - go to LA with camera and oven, find out the reasons for other studios, and post it in this forum. I'll even give you my secret $2000 Neaman-Marcus cookie recipe.