Is being “not available” the kiss of the devil?

When I went through the whole fiasco of getting snowed-in to Charlotte, I had to tell the coordinator I had been working with in Miami that I was not available for a day of work. This is the first time I have had to do something like this. It was like the blood icing on top of an ash black cake for the whole hustling the coordinator in Wilmington situation. Just one more thing to make the trip a bigger obstacle.

I know this sounds ridiculous, but I had not heard many good things about not being available for jobs. It seems to me as if you have to be available for everything or coordinators take it personally. They think that you don’t want it “bad enough.” At least this is the opinion I had somehow formed in my head from what other stunt guys had talked about.

I didn’t end up hearing from the coordinator for weeks and this made the situation worse. I was now stressing that my only way to gain experience had just vanished. I was going to have to start all over now. And now, this is a little embarrassing to admit. After about three weeks I finally got a call from this coordinator. They needed me for a continuation shot from the last fight I was in. The production actually delayed this particular shot because I, as well as another guy, were not available the previous month. How silly is this? I was so worried because of what I had heard that I didn’t stop to think that it could be a coincidence. Maybe they had to move on and shoot other scenes? Maybe I didn’t fit the bill for a couple of weeks? There were so many other possibilities and I completely blocked them out. I learned a good lesson here…Worrying doesn’t help anything!

But still, after all this, I can’t stop wondering if I did this to another coordinator, would it be the same reaction? There has got to be some middle ground here. Or…maybe there is not and I have a hard lesson to learn.

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