So I had to post this real quick because I found it mildly hilarious:
For the past couple of days, there has been one of those big honkin' digital signs sitting at the entrance to downtown Noho saying something like, "Delays, Limited Parking - 6 am to 1 pm daily" with some dates. I haven't paid it much mind because I just assumed they were doing inconvenient road work downtown and what are you going to do? I mean, I was a little surprised that they weren't doing night work, like usual, but I didn't think about it more than that.
Turns out Mel Gibson is filming a movie here. I found this out after my students were griping that they hadn't gotten a glimpse of the man yet. :)
Turns out I have been holed up inside my office the whole time the movie's filming, so whatever. But this morning, I got up at the crack of dawn to go swimming at the Smith College pool and so when I was picking her up around 7:30, we had to drive through downtown (I'd avoided downtown thus far, completely unwittingly), we realized we were driving right through the filming. How did we know?
No, I didn't see Mel Gibson. Don't really care to either. I saw something much more entertaining in my book.
So we're driving downtown and well, Noho is one of those college towns that's got a lot of pedestrian culture and people like to generally hang out downtown - street musicians and the like. But as we're driving, something seems a little off. We realize that there's a LOT of people just hanging out downtown for 7:30 am. Well, that makes sense, there's a movie filming - gawkers and all. But then: sundart
: Wait. Look how evenly those people are spaced. millari
: Huh? You think they might be people connected to the movie. sundart
: And look. Look at the assortment of people. I realize that there are indeed a multitude of people standing in some really unnaturally spaced way. One guy is in a business suit with a briefcase, like a lawyer, then there's a suburban mom type a few feet away, then a teenager a few feet away.
: Yeah, they do look kind of weird.sundart
: Dude, these are so fake pedestrians. You know how you can tell? None of them are moving
And indeed, half of downtown Northampton right now has been transformed into a modern-day Potemkin village, waiting for
Catherine the Great
Mel Gibson to come by and notice them for the cameras. Even more hilariously, down the road on the corner of Main and King Streets, there are a whole bunch of fake protesters holding up signs against the Iraq War (I'm suspecting the first one because some of the protesters are dressed in full hazmat suits, with ventilator masks and everything). Others are dressed like cartoon characters or something. One guy is dressed in camos with a banjo. They all hold preciously differing protest signs. They are all technicolor wonderful.