Black Friday

I was thankful for a lot of things this year. My parents whom I can’t live without. My grandma who helps me see life from the eyes of someone who’s been around for a while. My new agent that I got right after doing Annie!!! My kitteh-cat, Indy, the one indything I’m happy to come home to.

BUT BLACK FRIDAY is NOT what I’d be thankful for…EVER.

 

So my parents and I have never actually tried out Black Friday before because we feared the hour long line where, somehow, you feel like they should have figured out the fast-pass at some point recent. Disney got it right, for heck’s sake!

Mom had this wild idea to try it out for the first time this year. Well, why not. I’m a whimmer, after all. How bad could it be in Prescott Valley, Arizona, where the town itself is nearly ghostified. Prescott Valley

Mind you, some of those houses aren’t even occupied, as in never finished, as in real estate got so bad the companies ran like sh#t.

Okay, so I’m not a fan. You might as well accuse me of despising the entire state of Arizona…because you would be right.

 

Anyhow, in the small section of Arizona called Prescott, Mom and I are thinking chances are good at the midnight opening of Black Friday…not so much.

Lost mom…so took refuge in the kid game aisle.

I pretty much lost mom for about an hour. She told me I couldn’t hang around her, so I was assuming she was attempting to shop for me. After about thirty minutes, I decided to look for her.

Searching for mother in Best Buy.

I went back to my car after this. She called me fifteen minutes later saying she’d given up as well. There was one line and it circled the inside of the building. She said it wasn’t even moving.

Yeah.

We’re not doing that again. What a whim that wasn’t!

Whimming high up in the sky…

…With Funny Man, Mr. Georgia, and Funny Man Jr. (names have been removed for privacy reasons). And when I say high, I don’t mean stoned, although that would be another interesting whim. It was a great time, just three older guys and a kid-girl getting to know each other for about an hour as we flew from Van Nuys, CA to Mesa, AZ on a Hawker 800 for Funny Man’s comedy tour.

But getting to that Hawker is a whole nuther story in of itself.

My dear friend Anne was supposed to pick me up 45 minutes before I needed to arrive at Clay Lacy Airport. The time to get from Simi Valley to Clay Lacy is about 35-40 minutes. But she needed a buddy to ride with us so they could get back to Thousand Oaks in time for work by way of the carpool lane. So our friend Joe calls me. He decides he’ll be driving because both of their cars are out of gas and Joe drives fast enough to get me to the airport on time. As he’s explaining his plan, he’s also sitting at Cisco’s having a few drinks with our other friend Reid. I roll my eyes thinking Anne will still be driver.

So 4:17 rolls by, just a few minutes behind when I need to be leaving, and my friends pull up with Joe as driver. I immediately have a bad feeling. This is going to suck somehow.

I jump in and Joe takes off. In the wrong direction.

“Where the hell are you going?” I say, as he begins to drive deeper into the mazelike neighborhood, instead of having turned around back to the main street which he should have done in the first place!

“What? You never gone this way?” Joe says in his usual cocky tone.

Anne laughs.

It takes 10 minutes for Joe to blindly and arrogantly navigate through the neighborhood to finally pull out back onto the main street. As we drive towards the freeway, we pass my road. Obviously, THAT was no shortcut.

Anne laughs again. At this point, I want to pull out my hair, which I spent time making pretty, and was now being blown around by wind and smoke because Joe decided to start smoking in the car.

“So where’s the gas station?” Joe asks. At this point he’s finally listening to me, which he should have been doing 10 minutes prior! I tell him and we get gas as he’s smoking and admitting it’s illegal. Of course! Joe is Mr. Invincible and can get away with everything as long as he buys the other whoever a drink.

We hit the freeway at 100 mph. In traffic. Not too heavy, but enough that driving 100mph made me think we were either gonna DIE or get pulled over, which BOTH would have made me very late! Needless to say, from what should have taken 40 minutes took only 20 as we pulled up to Clay Lacy. As I frantically tried to straighten myself up and pretend like I didn’t just go through hell, Mr. Georgia came out and greeted me. All was better. He took my bag and ushered me inside the private reception area as Joe took off with Anne.

I told Mr. Georgia the entire story. He just laughed. We walked toward the Hawker 800 right as Funny Man and Jr. pulled up to board. To sum up the flight, I talked with the pilots, asked if I could fly (no, alright next time), got to know Mr. Georgia and Jr., and Funny Man Christanna2 piped in once in a while either teasing me about living in Simi Valley or why in the world did I move to California if I did mainly theater stuff. Mr. Georgia would back me up. 🙂

All in all, it was a lifetime experience. Thankfully Mr. Georgia had a camera because I forgot to bring mine. It was nice of him to offer taking pictures. It was also great to see my parents and grandparents whom I hadn’t seen in a long time. It’s not everyday you can just call up your mom and say, “hey, what are you doing? I can hang out today in an hour if you want” when you live in another state.

One of these days, private jets will be the only way I fly. 😉

PS-Come to find out later that Joe rear-ended someone after dropping me off. But he was only going 30 mph. Lol.

Had the craziest dream last night…

I am visiting Marilyn, my old roommate in Arizona, and Bellie, our kitty, wasn’t really dead, then in L.A. trying desperately to find the Terminator, gave up and met some other actors to do a stunt show in the water with a real great white named Jaws, "Jaws" decided not to cooperate and really try to eat me, not cool, then left the beach to go find Terminator again, ran into a gang of motorcycle dudes from Mad Max, I started shooting them up because they were bad, then they chased me all over Australia, me on my own motorcycle trying desperately to lose them and find my baby and…wife? Yep, I physically turned into Mel Gibson in Mad Max.

2010: The Sequel! And…what should be my new Resolution?

Of course, I’m referring to the 80s film 2010 which precedes 2001: A Space Odyssey. Neither of these films actually foretold the future of the Millennium very well. We have not built a base on the Moon and have not found the answer to the beginning of intelligence on Earth.

However, once 2010 hits, a simple revelation will be made…sort of. Of course, I’m referring to myself. What else are blogs for but to write personal accounts, heavy opinions on topics that reside within my own brain, untouched and stubborn to the outside thoughts of others, but mildly interested and appreciative of those thoughts.

2010 is coming and so a whole new year will unfold. It was only a year ago when I was making my slow-crawling ascent from the depths of despair which I had somehow allowed myself to tumble down into. My New Year’s Resolution then was to go “whimming,” to start a whole new look at life, to find happiness when happiness seemed so foreign and far, to embark on adventures, to laugh and play, to DATE like no other had dated before! Allowing myself to be open in case lightning struck me hard, waking me from a dreamlike reality I had been escaping to.

I found it: the path to Happy Ville. I found the ability to not need too much, to use logic rather than emotion ( in simpler terms, I have found a way to become more Vulcan), to be more confident in my beliefs about life, to not be knocked down, and so on.

At the beginning of 2009, I was barely surviving my own destruction, deciding on writing being the only way out. I made the bestest (YES, bestEST) of friends I could ever think of having and had the pleasure of creating memories I will never forget.

In 2009, I discovered the life of dating many different types of guys, while finally slowing down with The Terminator, whom I also refer to as my manfriend.

In 2009, I finally found a home: California. I never thought I would feel so comfortable here as fast as I did. I still revel in the fact that people here actually pronounce my name correctly right off the bat, rather than always screwing it up as they did in Arizona. I always think that’s a sign I belong…

However, not everything is all peaches and cream. My grandfather, Papa, is dying, mentally and physically. Once the smartest man I knew, is now the weakest man I know. I thought it would frighten me that he couldn’t remember me or mom, but it hasn’t. I had come to accept this, along with the rest of my family. He may not last another year, and even if he did physically, he will have no memory left. He brought me up as a child, but he will not witness me become a wife, a mother, a successful person…It is weird to think about.

Nonetheless, I actually did conquer my previous New Year’s resolution. I found the motivation to keep up a consistent blog, I finally graduated college, I got the hell out of Arizona and didn’t get stuck in a place I never wanted to be, I found a drama-free living situation with roommates who are kind yet distant, I am interning in two places at once, both being apart of the entertainment industry, I have already done three different Red Carpet events, met Patrick Kilpatrick, and have developed friendships with wonderfully interesting and fun people.

Most importantly, I found where I belong. I found my Happy Place. I guess finding happiness is easier than losing weight…? At least it is for me—I like food too much.

Next New Year’s Res.? I am FINALLY READY to find Love!…Although, considering this is much harder to achieve than even losing weight, I might change it to Being Able To Quit BJ’s. Or maybe they shall both be my New Year’s Res.? What do you think? Which one should be my Resolution? Love or Quitting BJ’s? You tell me.

I hope all of you had your wishes come true this year. And even if they didn’t, or you feel disappointed in some part of your life, just remember, tomorrow is another day! (thank you, scarlet o’hara).

California Update!

Okay, so after about a couple of weeks of boredom, suddenly in one week I am bombarded by a billion things to do. Last Sunday I spent all day in Santa Barbara with The Terminator and experienced oysters for the first time. Let me tell ya, eating oysters was a difficult thing to do.

Tossing an oyster down...ugh.
Tossing an oyster down…ugh.

It’s like going down on a guy. Just gotta keep telling yourself to not think about it. Just swallow—swallow—swallow. I had two and that was enough for a lifetime. That day I also had lobster for lunch and filet mignon for dinner and freshly made cupcakes for dessert at this awesome little bakery called Cupcakery. Love it! And then around 11pm I sang Sweet Child O’Mine and Don’t Rain On My Parade at this little karaoke bar, flooring the bar inhabitants. Didn’t get home until 2:30am.

The following Tuesday I was invited out by a girl, Stephanie, from work to go to the Jay Leno Show. I was totally stoked! She and her boyfriend and I got to sit up front and shook Leno’s hand. You can actually see me for a couple of seconds at the very beginning of the show. I’m in the teal and black striped sweater. He was so cool. Looked like a plastic doll up close. His guest was Bill Cosby and he was freaking hilarious! So amazing is Bill Cosby!!! [UPDATE: …..no longer hilarious or amazing……]

Later that night we went CANYON RACING with Stephanie’s friend Corey!!! Instead of 30 min., it took us 7 min. to get to Malibu from where we were. My stomach was in my throat the whole time. I was holding on for dear life, but it was incredible. Corey owns a street car race car which means it can grip regular street pavement and turn on a dime. Pretty nuts.

The next day, I met up with an old friend from high school, Jennifer Ricks. She is assistant designer for GUESS Jeans. She showed me around her work inside GUESS headquarters. We had lunch at the Wolfgang Puck cafeteria and then shopped inside the warehouse store where GUESS items that were approved or not approved (meaning they probably never made it to the big stores so it makes them one of a kind) and I was in GUESS heaven! Because of Rixie’s 40% discount off of already hugely discounted stuff, I bought over 500$ worth of clothing for only 100$!!! I was a very happy girl. I’ve never owned nice jeans before and they fit me perfectly. Maybe because the girl the base all their jean sizes on (whom I met during lunch) is exactly the same size as me. I said to her, “So you’re the girl I can blame if something doesn’t fit me right.” She laughed and said, “Yep!” One of the pairs of jeans I bought would be priced close to 200$ in the store, but in the warehouse they were only 40$. I nearly choked when the register lady told me that.

So, all in all, it’s been quite an interesting week. I’m getting the hang of Burbank, Westlake, Simi Valley, and even a little bit of L.A. Speaking of which, I noticed the L.A. style of driving is rubbing off of me. There was a point in downtown where I cut a bunch of people off to get back on the freeway (which, by the way, sucks because the on ramps to freeways are crazy illogical!). I thought to myself, wow, I really am turning into a California driver.

I will say, though, I haven’t had a tinge of homesickness. I have missed my closest friends very much, but I definitely feel great here. I love how all the towns dress up for Halloween. Everywhere I go there are elaborate decorations making me feel like a kid again. Much different than lame Arizona which doesn’t get in the spirit for any holiday. On a side note, I have been applying to IGN consistently for all their openings, one of which really fits me as Expanded Editor. However, the job is in San Fransisco. Boo. 😦 But I applied anyway. If I could get a well paying job with IGN, I would be set for life. We’ll see what happens.

And so the sun rises…

 

It was my last night at work and I didn’t get home until 6 a.m. For the first time in years, I saw the sun rise. As I drove up the curving mountainous highway, only a few of us other late nighters keeping company on the long road home, I watched the star-studded sky fade into a pale blue. And then, from the east, the pale blue blushed orange and red, the distant mountains hiding the awakening sun.

My eyes ached for sleep, my legs throbbed to rest, and I smelled of milk…or rather dried whipped cream. Indeed, it was a long night. And as I spend my last few days living in Arizona, I wonder vaguely who I will become, what will alter me, who will I meet, who will I befriend? And, though the mere thought of existing in a place where life starts all over again is thrilling, I can’t help but feel panicked. Because the people I know today cannot be replaced. And they are amazing human beings.

It’s not every day you look forward to going to work, but when your work includes a ton of fantastic people, it changes your perspective. That is, if you allow yourself to SEE the people and who they are.

Like I said, it was my last day and I ended up closing, which was great cause I needed it! I had a group of friends from work waiting for me at a bar. They came back to see how close I was to being done, and graciously surprised me with whipped cream to the face, which I shared by smearing back on their faces—though some escaped before I could get to them. We met up with some other buddies from work, some of which had already started drinking. Knowing I had a two hour drive to get back up to my parents’ place, I had to make sure I didn’t drink too much.

The boys bought us rounds and we laughed the night away, all work relations faded, all differences gone, acting like we’d known each other all our lives when we‘d only known each other for a short time. Being an observer type, I marveled at how distinctive we were and, yet, very much the same. All searching, all learning, needing, wanting, regretting, forgetting, beginning. Wanting different, but feeling the same.

We watched a friend serenade to us—and the bar—which then inspired them to provoke me into singing as well. I complained about not knowing anything with meaningful lyrics, whereas Hakim had been singing some seriously deep stuff. But, later, as I drove up I-17, watching the sunrise, a song I hadn’t thought about in years popped into my head and I couldn’t believe I didn’t think of it before. The first time I sang this song, I was in 6th grade and didn’t fully understand the meaning of what it was I was singing, though I thought maybe someday I would. I do now. So here it is:

A new life.

What I wouldn’t give to have a new life.

One thing I have learned as I go through life,

Nothing is for free along the way…

A new start.

That’s the thing I need to give me new heart.

Half a chance in life to find a new part,

Just a simple role that I can play…

A new hope.

Something to convince me to renew hope.

A new day.

Bright enough to help me find my way.

A new chance.

One that maybe has a touch…of romance.

Where can it be? The chance for me?

A new dream.

I have one I know that very few dream.

I would like to see that overdue dream,

Even though it never may come true.

A new love.

Though I know there’s no such thing as true love.

Even so, although I never knew love,

Still I feel this one dream is my due.

A new world.

This one thing I want to ask of you, World.

Once before it’s time to say adieu, World,

One sweet chance to prove the cynics wrong.

A new life.

More and more as sure as I go through life,

Just to play the game and to pursue life,

Just to share its pleasures and belong.

That’s what I’ve been here for all along.

Each days a brand…new….life.

-Frank Wildhorn

I believe this song relates to all of us trying to find our little niches in this world. No matter how old or young you are, some of us never stop looking for that special…something.

This is what I see in the people I work with. This is what I see in the strangers that pass by me. This is what I see every day. The search for a new life.

That night, we finished by taking home a troubled friend who had had a little too much to drink. Then Erica and I walked nearly two miles back to our cars. Thank goodness it was cool out.

I know that I’ll never forget the people I’ve worked with. It’s not every day your work buddies become an important part of your life. I’ll remember the days we got along and the days we didn’t. But in the end, we all came together…with a little drink or two. 🙂

And as I drove the long two hour stretch back home, I passed Sunset Point and laughed. The sun was rising.