I’ve had a pretty damn fine reception from the fandom and my peers during my run as the Machine. But there’s nothing like two weeks of a spotlight on a gal to bring out more trolls than I’ve ever seen in my short Schmoedown career. Going beyond silly sarcasm and fun banter, into shaming you for flaws, and attempting to weaponize your mistakes.
I was thinking about competitors who have to make certain special arrangements to even be involved in the show and wondered if those watching really know how it effects our everyday. I thought it might be interesting to outline what I go through to compete and how it impacts my daily life; Not just for those who may be interested, but also for the haters who forget we’re people with actual lives, who love doing this enough to work it into our days and probably beat ourselves up for mistakes we’ve made in the game far more than they ever could.
I live in Clovis California in Fresno County. Fresno is roughly 3.5 hours away from where the Schmoedown tapes. I drive a 2013 Jetta Sedan. A full tank can range from $45-$50. That 3.5 hour drive utilizes about half of that each way. I work a full time PM shift job in a surgical hospital kitchen, 5 days a week, Tuesday to Saturday, with Sundays and Mondays as my set days off. I have little vacation time and it builds up slowly.
Schmoedown tapings and Live events are always on Saturdays. So this requires me to constantly switch a shift with a very generous co-worker who takes my Saturday shift when needed, with me taking her shift the following Monday, turning my 5 day work week into a 6 day work week. When this Saturday to Monday switch happens, I sometimes drive up at 7:00 pm on Friday night when I finish my work so I’ll be in LA already for a taping the following day.
While it’s manageable, it’s not ideal since I co-host and guest host on 2 weekly podcasts that require me to watch movies for them and are done with a co-host who is 8 hours in the future. Add to that the fact that I also run my patreon, work on design commisions, guest on other shows and write these very articles. Oh and let’s not forget about one other important thing, studying for the schmoedown. These are all things I’m incredibly passionate about, so I make time for them but I’d be lying if I said it was easy.
This is a Thank you to those who do see my progress and potential. To those who support and understand that bad days can happen in this game and despite that, I do what I need to do to come back every chance I get. However, to those who choose a smaller way of thinking I’m going all “8 Mile” a la B. Rabbit’s final rap battle, Laying out my failures for you Just to say this; Please don’t forget, like everyone else in the league, i’m just a regular schmoe that puts in a lot to be a part of this show.
That before you talk about my “loud” manager and my beltless, broken faction; My big losses, my “easy” wins; My flubs, Brain farts and misses (John Voight, Liam Neeson, That Awkward Moment, Cara Delevingne, NightCrawler, Randall Wallace, Tom Cruise, Cellar Door-Yes I recall all my notable and infuriating mistakes), know that every time you see me at that desk or on that stage it’s a 7 hour journey, a hefty chunk of gas money and an extended work week that’s gotten me there.
So while you’re staying small, I’m here doing something I love and representing something far bigger as the Machine on the greatest damn movie trivia shown there ever was.