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"DOING" HOLLYWOOD

September 14, 2002

Partying with a celebrity...dinner on LaBrea followed by a madcap ride in a convertable around Hollywood to the theatre...a friend's play...a night in the Hollywood hills...breakfast at a sidewalk cafe...a movie screening on the Fox lot...a photo shoot... another time to see the play...a mad dash to LAX and then home. I haven't spent a weekend in Los Angeles, I've spent a weekend "doing Hollywood."

I didn't make my 4 a.m. bike ride with Cindy on Saturday. I was still hunched over a hot computer trying desperately to get some transcription done. The plan was to leave for the airport at 6:30 and at 6:15 I hadn't packed yet. But by 6:25, I had managed to throw some stuff in my lovely Australian backpack and we were off into the rising sun, headed for the Sacramento airport.

The flight was eventful for it being the first really congenial flight I'd ever had. There were 5 of us sitting in a group--two facing back and 3 facing forward and we had a lovely chat all the way to LA. The guy from Australia was going to meet his girlfriend, who was flying in that afternoon, the mother and daughter were meeting the daughter's sister, and all were going out for eggs benedict and the personal trainer from Chico was going to give a lecture at a health club.

When we arrived in LA, I rented a car and, armed with my folder full of Yahoo maps, managed to find my way to the bridal shower. The bride is Stacie, the daughter of Walt's cousin, and the shower was being held at the home of Michelle Phillips, her best friend for the past 12 years.

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Michelle Phillips - Stacie Seifrit

(In anticipation of knowing very few people there, I wore my "Beverly Hills" shirt, with the "Beverly" prominent and the "hills" barely visible.)

It was a lovely party. Michelle is part owner in a well known Mexican restaurant, so she'd brought in the bartender, who set up a full bar (Fabulous margaritas!), and brought all the food in from the restaurant--including a veritable vat of guacamole. She was disappointed that the band of mariachi players she'd hired to seranade us during lunch never showed up.

It was interesting wandering around the house. It's a fairly nondescript place in an upscale, though by no means luxurious part of town and there certainly is nothing particularly lavish about it, but it's just...different. From the snapshot of the Baldwin brothers with a baby, sitting on the bookshelf, to the faded framed photo of a young Michelle with Mama Cass on the piano to the dusty statuette sitting behind some other thing that shows that Michelle has been inducted into the rock and roll hall of fame.

When the shower was winding down, I grabbed my Yahoo maps, hopped into my 8 passenger van (they were out of compacts, so they let me have a van for the same price) and spent the next hour wandering up and down LaBrea looking for the restaurant where I was to meet my friends Merrell and Pat. After a lovely Japanese dinner, we went off to the theatre in Merrell's convertable. She drives like a maniac and since I suffer from autophobia anyway, I made sure I was very tightly snapped into my seatbelt and held on for dear life.

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("The Lex" theatre)

The Big Voice in its revised format is much tighter than when I saw it a few weeks ago. It's a wonderful show and got a standing ovation at the end. I think by the time they finish this "workshop run," they should have a solid hit on their hands when it moves to the Zephyr theatre, and the critics are invited to attend.

When the show ended, I spent the night at Merrell's hideaway in the Hollywood Hills, just off Sunest Blvd (a house she bought, by the way, and paid cash for, out of her one-day winnings at the racetrack!) Her house is set so high up on hillside of the land she owns that racoons play in her little waterfall, and deer munch the peaches off the peach tree in the garden. I completely died when I hit the couch and didn't wake up for 7 hours.

Then it was off, back down Sunset Blvd to the theatre to meet Michael, who was taking me to breakfast and then to a movie screening on the Fox lot. This was for a movie called "Igby Went Down," which is excellent. I recommend it.

TBVLex.JPG (27316 bytes)When it was over, he drove me back to the theatre, where we had an hour before showtime, so Jimmy and Steve had me do a photo shoot for them, taking pictures of various parts of the show (my favorite scene, which I wanted to shoot, is supposed to be a surprise for the audience, so we skipped that part).

And then the next performance of the play, again to great audience response. One elderly woman was overheard talking to her husband at intermission, saying "I've seen some pretty mediocre things in this theatre--but this is excellent." I took that as a positive sign that the show has some longevity to it.

Unfortunately, I couldn't stick around after the show, because I had to catch a plane, so I fumbled my way through the streets of the city and somehow, miraculously, managed to get to the airport without too many traumas. By the time I had returned the car and been delivered to the Southwest terminal, it was nearly 7 p.m. and I hadn't had a thing to eat since about 10, so I was starving. I found a nice Mexican place to get a quick bite to eat and then just settled in with my book until time to board the plane.

But now the weekend is over. There was a message from Dr. G about assignments for tomorrow, the bike is sitting there waiting for me to ride it at 5 a.m. and I haven't even begun to do any transcription. But it's nearly midnight and I think transcription is just going to have to wait till morning.


Imagine my surprise when I returned home and discovered nearly $300 worth of pledges for my AIDS walk.  You guys are the greatest!  Thank you so much.  I promise to walk my little tootsies to blisters for ya!

 

Quote of the Day

....she was recently elected to be Miss Teen USA. So now she's got this movie career and she's complaining about the fact that she has to show up three hours earlier than everybody else to have a prosthetic jawbreaker put into her throat because she's playing a corpse who has been choked to death by a jawbreaker. So she's complaining about that and she's complaining about the fact that she has to fly to North Carolina to film the new movie Carrie 2 and she's going to have to have her chest blown up and she's going to have to shoot a gun and she's begging us to come out and visit her so she can at least have friends with her and I'm thinking--my god. I'm not just having breakfast, I'm doing breakfast. With a movie star!

--Paul Sykes

Photo of the Day

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a young Michelle Phillips

 

 

 

 

 

One Year Ago
Moving On
It's difficult to think of writing "How I'm spending my autumn vacation" when the horror continues and the country is on the brink of war.

Two Years Ago
Stuff and Nonsense*
I just realized what I’d save. I should have thought of it right away. It’s the only truly valuable thing in this house. The only thing that is treasured by everyone in this family. The only thing that is truly irreplaceable. The only thing that we would all miss...

*This one won a Diarist Net Award


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Pounds Lost:  77.8
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URL 660.8 + 36
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Created 9/14/02