Archive for March 2013

Lionel Richie Tribute at Last Year’s ACMA’s

Lionel Richie and Kenny Rogers sang Lionel’s hit song, “Lady” live at the tribute show for Mr Richie the day after the ACM Awards in April 2012.  It was a great show.  The crowd was so into it and every song (except this one sadly) sounded incredible live, and as a duet.

Lionel Richie Kenny Rogers Lady live

All my videos from this show feature an older couple dancing with each other.  Try to spot them.  Seeing them enjoy the evening with each other made my night.  I hope they melt your heart too.

Click the photo to watch the video of the live performance from the arena

T-minus 4+2+0 days til Vegas!

IMG_0773

 

This was taken at last year”s day after tribute concert to Lionel Richie.

I wonder if the security guards get to chose their t-shirt #?

Deep thoughts should never happen in Vegas.  Just sayin…

Another Day In LA

Came home the other day via the little airport near our house.  I was waiting at baggage claim when I saw this group of college-age co-eds waiting to get an autograph.  They were getting antsy.  I could tell from how the were stepping in place, agitated, wringing their hands, that they were afraid whoever they were there to see had already left.  I watched as they quizzed a flight attendant from our flight.  I have no idea what they asked her, but you could tell they were trying to find someone.  I think it’s so sweet that people think this much of someone they see on tv, or in the movies, or hear on the radio, that they would try to find them to get an autograph.  I really do think fans seeking autographs is what it is all about.  Defines the entertainment industry, in a glance.  The simplicity and the complexity, all rolled up into the excitement at the chance of fans meeting their idol.

MySurreaLife at Burbank airport

In the span of the 20 minutes it took me to drive to work yesterday, I passed two location shoots.  Not sure if they were still shots or filming for a show or movie but they did chose lush, gorgeous scenery to be surrounded by!  It’s always fun for me, driving by, wondering what world they’re creating beneath all those lights and screens and cameras.

Yesterday I also went to the Century City mall to return some home organization items.  I thought I saw Michael Keaton in the store and I was giddy with excitement at the thought of being in the presence of a Batman.  The man I saw wasn’t Michael Keaton after all, but it was a fun thought while it lasted.  Still kind of is fun, thinking about being in a room with someone who played Batman.  To be that actor, living in that world of Gotham City and the joker and all of them.  I don’t think I’ll ever be able to fully understand how actors can get into their roles the way they do.  *Applauding them*

MySurreaLife at the Century City Mall

While at the mall, I stopped in the food court to grab some lunch and saw this vending machine dispensing items including caviar, white truffle oil and even vegan caviar.  This seems so very LA.

On my way home, I was stuck in traffic, but this was my view.  I wasn’t mad in the slightest.

MySurreaLife on Mulholland

Random thoughts about another day, in LA…

T-minus 8 Days ‘Until I Spend a Week in Vegas !!! Gulp

An annual trip to Vegas is almost upon me.  It is nearly that time for many of my colleagues & I to head to Las Vegas for the Academy of Country Music Awards.  This is by far one of the most fun award shows we get to work because, #1 – it is in Vegas and #2 – it is country so the talent and the fans have been, in years past, beyond awesome.

To sum it up, this time every year, I get to work with some of my favorite people, in Vegas, surrounded by nice people, not jerks like we are used to working around when we are working most shows in LA.  Hooray!  This year the trip is extended by a couple days so I can spend some time with family who will also be in town, not to work but to celebrate one of my cousin’s milestone birthdays. Fun!!!! I am so excited to spend some fun times with my family and then get to go to work with my fun friends too.

The only down side is that I will be in Las Vegas for SIX days.  Six days without a kitchen, nearly a week without home cooked food, days upon days in that insanely dry air conditioning / smoke filled air.  All this in the midst of preparing our house for a new arrival or two.  Gulp gulp gulp.  Deep breaths.  Trying not to panic.

In counting down to this year’s ACM festivities, I thought it would be fun to share some photos and video from last year, because last year was just about as good as it could get for me.

This is a pretty cray video of a day that I was able to take a stroll down the ol Strip.  The guy with the snakes got me GOOD.

Click the photo to be linked to the YouTube video. Enjoy!

MySurrealife in Vegas March 2012

Twas a Very LA Sort of Day

I saw this odd little scene en route to the UPS store not far from our house.

MySurrealife view of Studio City

Even the bicyclist on the “tall” bike is looking at this guy like, “what the heck are you thinking man?!”  I was thinking how balls-y this person on the little bike is, riding in traffic, pretty much below the sight line of all cars, relying on only his flag to keep him from being run over.  Balls-y? Stupid?  Both?

The day all started so beautifully.  Typical LA day; blue skies, temperature in the high 60s, slight breeze blowing against my skin.  And then I had to deal with people.  That’s when things turned not so beautiful, but typical of LA yet again.

I arrived to the UPS store, thrilled to find someone backing out of the then only available parking space in the tiny, always over-crowded lot.  When I asked the chick behind the counter, with the UPS shirt on, if I had to fill out a tracking slip, or if everything was done on the computer, she said to fill out a slip.  I reached for the forms they had sitting out on the counter, filled out the form, I handed it to her and said, “I have an account.  Where do I put that information?”  She then gave me the stink eye saying, “you didn’t tell me you had an account,” as she handed me a different form and said, “you need to fill this out.”

I gave her my own stink eye and a frustrated sigh.  I had to remind myself to count to ten, take some deep breaths and fill out the next friggin form.  After I filled out the second form, I kindly told her I was frustrated because I don’t in fact work at the UPS store and she does.  She got defensive saying how I didn’t say I had an account.  I responded kindly, reminding her I don’t work at UPS and had no idea there would be different forms for different types of senders, those with accounts and those without.  I showed her a FedEx form I happened to have with me, saying there was only one form for Fedex, whether you have an account or not.  I told her I wasn’t trying to be rude, but that it would serve her better to ask the right questions of her customers to save everyone some time.  I HATE wasting time.  And I really despise when customer service people are rude.  I know plenty of capable people who need a job.  Don’t make me want to go on a rant to your boss about you because I will.  I really do hate wasting time because of someone else’s bad attitude.  I digress…

Back into the crowded parking lot to get back into my crowded car to go to yet another business where I hoped I would get some decent customer service.  Thankfully I did, shortly after I saw this in the next parking lot I visited next.

MySurreaLife in the BBB parking lot

I literally laughed out loud and grabbed my phone to snap a shot.  I wanted to wait to see what the person looked like who drove this thing, but I just let myself imagine him instead as I went inside to return some merchandise.  This customer service person in the Bed, Bath & Beyond location was beyond helpful, although not very kind initially.  I made a few jokes, she loosened up, we took care of my hefty return of a transaction with ease and I felt accomplished and happy as I left the store.  Take that UPS.

I had to rush back home to meet a person I found on Craig’s List who was looking for older bikes to restore.  I have been storing my grandfather’s Murray bike for the past 6 years, had not ridden it once and was hearing complaints from my neighbors that the bike had to go elsewhere, but there was nowhere else for it to go.  I finally gave in and sold it.  My heart felt broken for only a second and I enjoyed the thought that I didn’t have to worry about storing it anymore, or restoring it or hearing my neighbors anymore.  I have the memory, and I even have a photo.  That’s all I need…until I find myself needing a bike.  Until then I will enjoy the feeling of passing it along to the next person who can use it.

MySurrealife Gpa's bike

Not long after the sale of the bike, my significant other and I decided we would like to go see a movie.  We decide on “Olympus Has Fallen,”  which I had never heard about before, but it looked good enough, especially next to the other choices.  We bought our tickets online, got two good seats, printed our ticket and headed to the theater.  It was a Saturday night, so when we pulled up to valet (I know, I know.  Keep shaking your head.), it was a very crowded scene.  We got our goodies from the concession stand and went into the theater to find our seats.  As we began the climb up the stadium seating, I overheard a couple discussing Scientology. hahaha.  Ohhhhhh, LA.

We sat down, started munching on our popcorn and candy.  I opened my box of candy to find that the bag in the box was already open.  I was not going to eat a bag of opened candy, even if the box was sealed shut.  Better to be safe indeed.  I returned the candy, came back and as I got close to my seat, a young-ish boy (10-14 years old) accidentally knocked my bottle of water over, which was fine because I hadn’t even opened the bottle yet.  I sat down and said to him, “thanks for shaking up my water bottle buddy.” He and his mom/aunt (?) who was with him laughed.

After the water bottle incident, I overheard the lady asking the boy, “are you excited to see yourself running down the halls of the White House?”  Of course we would be sitting next to someone in the movie.  Turns out the boy had a pretty significant part in the movie.  This kid was Finley Jacobsen.  He played the part of the First Son, a vital character to the story line.  I wondered to myself, “why was he seeing this movie in a theater?! Didn’t he go to the premiere?  If so, why was he seeing it again?  Taking his mom, or his aunt to see it?  Why didn’t they go to the premiere? Perhaps someone was out of town that day and they dragged the kid out of the house to get see the movie with them?”  These are the thoughts that go through my mind.  Come to find out via imdb.com that the kid did in fact go to the premiere.

That was my very LA sort of day.

Countdown to the Academy of Country Music Awards !!!

One of my jobs shouldn’t actually be called work.  Well, it is work, but it is so much fun too, because of the people I get to work with.

I freelance as a talent logistics person at award shows.  I don’t even know if that’s the right phrase or way to describe what I’m hired to do at award shows, but it’s basically being eyes and ears on talent to make sure they’re in the right place at the right time for their 15 minutes on stage/screen that day.

One of the most fun award shows I am blessed to work is the Academy of Country Music Awards in Las Vegas.  I live in LA so it’s nice to get paid to go to Sin City, even if there won’t be a lot of “sinning” while there.

Last year, Beth Behrs from the TV show “2 Broke Girls” was a part of the show.  These are a few fun, candid shots I got of her when she was at the venue for rehearsals.

Beth Behrs 2 Broke Girls MySurreaLife

Beth Behrs 2 Broke Girls MySurreaLife2

Stay tuned for some more great photos and even better videos from last year.

Be sure to REALLY tune into the show when it airs on CBS Sunday, April 7, 8pm Eastern.

Or click the link below for tickets!

http://www.acmcountry.com/tickets.html

The Thing About Baggage

MySurreaLife The Thing About Baggage

Lately, we have been cleaning out our house to make room for a child, or potentially children, to come live with us via the foster care system.  This Friday will be the last meeting we will have to have with our social worker in this process to become certified foster parents.  To say it has been a challenge, rearranging our house and consolidating our things to make room for someone else, would be correct. But it has been a fun and rewarding challenge.

I’ve always been one to do things very thoroughly and by this I think it’s just a nice excuse for me to think I’m doing it more than just slowly.  In this process of cleaning out stuff to make room for someone else’s stuff, I have gone through closets of boxes and boxes of papers and cedar chests full of clothes.  I’ve gotten rid of a ton of treasures; clothes, old letters and memorabilia, photos, household items and it has felt great to let go of so much clutter.  This process, however, has made me wonder why I have acquired so much stuff and why it is is so hard for me to get rid of.  I used to be a lot more sentimental about “stuff.”  I would think to myself, “oh, well I got this on that adventure where we experienced (whatever it was that was experienced.)”  I’ve recently come to understand how, as long as the memory is there, the less necessary it is to hold onto whatever item I am associating the memory to.  I’ve taken photos of some items before I’ve gotten rid of them, items that brought back specific memories or feelings I had otherwise forgotten.  I wanted to be able to look at whatever the item was in the future, but only on my camera or computer screen, and not in a box somewhere taking up space, making me feel claustrophobic.

MySurreaLife Sweater

Wherever I spend a lot of time, I am finding that I have a lot of places I have stuff neatly organized behind a clean surface.  My home needs to look nice and without clutter or I won’t rest until items are put away neatly where they belong.  And my car, as another example, it’s a hatchback, but it has one of those lovely rolling covers to hide the items in the “trunk” and boy, are there a lot of items in that “trunk” on any given day.  Why can’t it just be nice and cleaned out?!  Because I’m always carting items to be donated, or putting things in the car that need to be returned.  Why do I waste my time with such things?!  Why can’t I just throw them away like one of my former roommates who just trashed whatever she didn’t want or need anymore?!

I’ll never forget a couple years ago when I was traveling.  I felt like I was forgetting something because I wasn’t loaded down with tons of stuff.  I remember how good it felt to walk through the airport briskly and quickly, without constantly pulling a heavy bag up over my shoulder or having to switch arms because my rolling carry on suitcase was too heavy.  I thought back to all the times I travelled carrying everything but the kitchen sink along with me, just in case.  Just in case what?!  I was so scatter brained back then, so unable to focus and decide what was a necessity, thinking so un-clearly that I needed to have everything with me.  I used to carry so much paperwork, and a laptop, a book, and a magazine, and on and on.  Now I know I will never do all of those things (read the book and the magazine and use my laptop) while traveling, nor will I likely use everything I used to bring with me everywhere.  Now I know to prioritize and be selective, with “stuff,” as in life.  Feels good to keep lightening the mental and physical load.

MySurreaLife Americas Greatest Hits

I have come to realize that all this stuff I’m constantly carrying with me, going through, compartmentalizing and one day getting rid of, is exactly like all the other stuff I just can’t get rid of in my head, compartmentalized memoires & mental clutter messing with my emotional feng shui.  I’ve worked recently to make it a point to mentally and physically say goodbye to certain items because it is simply time.  Time to let go of the item and, often also with some of the items, it has been time to let go of the memory as well.

Feels good to clean house and it feels really liberating clearing out my head too.  Downsizing everything, to make room to love someone else.  Can’t wait!!!

Thanks for the reminder Sylvia Plath

“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”

I found this scribbled on a piece of paper in my office today.  Who knows how long I’ve had it.  I’ve definitely had it long enough to not remember writing it down, which makes me think it might be from my college days 15 (!) or so years ago.  That’s when I was really wondering what I wanted to do with my life, what I wanted to major in and all those details that really only matter in college.  Once you get to the “real world” so much happens to all the plans you made.

As I grow older and as more and more changes in my life, I strive to be able to have something to look back on, something to remember the details.  These days I love finding a photo album and sitting down to go through it, smiling at the memories, remembering things about my life at those times.  It’s getting harder to have photos to put together in books with other memorabilia because no one really prints their photos anymore.  Everything is digital.

Hence the blog.  Here we are, online.  I’m writing this, you’re reading it (thanks by the way.)

*smiles*

MySurreal Serendipity

Everyday, more and more things keep happening for me where the timing could not be better.  Today, for instance, I was running errands when I got hungry and decided I wanted to go home to eat, even though I would be joining some family to eat an early dinner in a few short hours.

I was home maybe thirty minutes when there was a knock on the door.  It was the delivery people for the components for the new closet we’re having installed in two days.  If I would have forgotten this, it would have messed with a great many things this next week, making my life way more difficult than I would have preferred it to be for the week ahead.  Thankfully, I listened to my gut (ha!) and took care of me which in turn took care of the plans I had spent quite some time preparing for.

After everything was dropped off and the delivery man was long gone, I went to pick up my mother-in-law to take her to dinner with my Grandmother and Aunt.  When I went to her apartment, she was dressed and ready with the exception of having her shoes on.  She asked me to help her, which is not unusual.  She is 83 and wobbly and I am happy to help with anything she needs.  I helped put her shoes on, which ended up being too tight on her so I had to recommend a different pair of shoes to which we put on her instead.  I asked her to please put on her jacket and off we went.  I laughed to myself as I buckled her into her seat belt.  I realized how great practice this is for me as our dream of being parents looks to be a much closer reality lately.   *SMILING!!!*

MySurreaLife…to go

MySurreaLife to go

I still don’t know what to make of this.

Awesome or totally wasteful?

I loved it because my hand didn’t get wet from the condensation, nor did my hand get cold.

I hated that I was wasting a paper bag for my own comfort.

I think these people are onto something with this though.

Anyone down to go into business with me and make these for all to go drinks?!