Documentary Blog #11 – Meeting Victor and changing attitudes

On a Wednesday morning my videographer for this part of the documentary, Frank Nolan, and I jumped in the car and made the six hour drive from Los Angeles to San Francisco/Marin County.  We had our hotel in Marin County booked and wanted to get into Marin in time to meet Victor, grab some food and get some sleep before three action-filled days of filming and learning with Victor Buick.  Along the drive I learned a lot about Frank, his wife, their son and his background in Australia.  Frank is also a musician (as am I) so we talked a lot about music, bands, songs, albums and concerts along the drive.   It actually made the trip go significantly faster.
Victor Buick of Marin Meals on Wheels

Victor Buick of Marin County Meals on Wheels

We got into the SF area a little earlier than expected so we had to time to get some great B-Roll shots of SF and the Golden Gate Bridge before meeting up with Victor at the hotel later.  Victor told me he couldn’t meet up with us until around 7:30pm or so and he could not stay for dinner.  So, we have about 1.5 hours to get some footage so I pulled off HWY 101 just before the Golden Gate (on the SF side) and drove down by the Presidio to get some time lapse and scenic shots of the Golden Gate, barges passing through the channel and Alcatraz.  We spent about an hour down in the area getting some great footage that I know will make the final theatrical release. We then got into the car and made our way to the hotel, checked in and waited to meet Victor.  I remember Frank asking what Victor looked like and I informed Frank that I couldn’t tell him that because I had yet to meet him (however, thoughts of what I thought he looked like based on my previous judgment were running through my mind and made me laugh as to how much of an idiot I was in judging Victor). VIDEO B-ROLL CLIPS OF THE GOLDEN GATE BRIDGE Time Lapse Fast Time Lapse Slow Meeting Victor at the Hotel Frank and I walk outside to meet up with Victor.  We see this little white Prius (or something like that) pull up and someone started to get out.  I was not prepared for what I was about to see.  A man came up to me and said, “Are you Seth?”  Clearly I could tell it was Victor but the booming, deep voice.  I answered, “Yes,” and then we shook hands and talked for a bit.  Another side note – As many of you know me, you know I am not a small man, never have been nor ever will be.  I am 6’3” tall with very broad shoulders and weigh (currently) 237 lbs. so not many people dwarf me.  However, Victor dwarfs me.  Victor stands about 6’4” and weighs (I’m guessing) around 265 lbs.  He frame is that of an offensive lineman from college or professional football teams with formidable facial features in his cheeks and chin.  He looks like on of those guys in the movies who don’t flinch a muscle when hit with a folding chair.  He is a big man but not someone I would call fat.  His shoulders are much more broad than mine and while standing next to him I look thin!  He also has dark, dark hair that is pulled back into a nice ponytail.  It’s a cool looking ponytail and not one that looks like a lot of the white trash ponytail the thugs in my high school use to sport.
Victor Buick Meals on Wheels

Victor Buick standing in the hall of his Meals on Wheels organization

After the “official” meeting Victor asked us to help him get something of the car that he had brought for us.  It was a large white cooler filled with water, soda, beer and snacks.  Once again, this man, unknowingly, made me feel like a complete idiot about what I thought of who he could be and what he is all about.  I think subconsciously my judgments of Victor are more about me projecting my thoughts of this documentary and seniors than anything else.  Remember, I didn’t care about this topic and my commitment to this documentary was/is part of me trying to figure out why I never cared.  It’s hard for me at this time to wrap my head around the thought that anyone around the same age or younger than me can really care about this matter of senior hunger and be so completely selfless and, well, a really good, caring person.  But, that’s exactly who Victor Buick is.  I cannot believe how sincere, genuine, warm and caring this man is and how he is treating Frank and me.  I look forward to seeing what makes this man tick.  Yes, I spent some time on the phone with Victor prior to coming to Marin Co. but that was to understand what is happening in this part of the country.  And, not knowing him or his genuine concern and care our conversations were little more than me listening to him explain his anger and frustration.  Frankly, he came across as “angry and frustrated” but now I am starting to see a gentle man who is passionate about that in which he believes, is adamant about his position, is intelligent and articulate and cares deeply about what he does and the people whose lives he helps.  I started to see a lot of myself in Victor.
Victor Buick - Life-Saver, Thrash Metal Drummer

Victor Buick - Life-Saver, Thrash Metal Drummer!

I am looking forward to riding along and feeding the masses of hungry seniors in Marin Co. tomorrow. Day #1 recap tomorrow.

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