Sunday, June 22, 2008

Summer's Here.....Finally

Since we actually have seasons here in California (unlike Florida, where I spent most of my life), Summer Solstice is a big deal for me, the weather-obsessed-one. The Solstice parade is a biggie in Santa Barbara. I know, I know - we have a parade every other weekend, but this one is definitely the Mac-Daddy of them all. Actually SB's Summer Solstice Celebration is a mini-Mardi Gras. I'll just leave it at that and let the pictures fill in the blanks. (Click images to enlarge.)

Saturday, June 21, 2008

And the Emmy Goes To.....

Time for my favorite event of the year: The Daytime Emmy Awards. However, ya know how just a few people ruin it for everyone else? I think Jilly G and I may have done that a couple of years ago. (Click here to read about those adventures.)

"I'd like to thank the academy."
See, the DTE Awards used to be in New York, but it came to Hollywood for the first time in 2006. That year we were allowed to take in cameras, run around the lobby mingling with the stars, and go in and out of the Kodak as much as we wanted. Now they've gone all Hollywood-security on us and had the main part of the red-carpet blocked off, we weren't allowed to take in cameras (even though we snuck them in), the bar closed the minute the show opened so you couldn't even get water, and we weren't allowed to re-enter if we left the Kodak. Secret's out - soap opera fans are a wild and crazy security risk.
BFF Carrie-ITC flew out for this event (we've been watching All My Children together since college) and we all stayed at BFF Jilly G's apartment near Hollywood. Carrie-ITC and I went to the red carpet fesitivites for some early stalking and then Jilly G met us inside the Kodak after work. We had great seats and, surprisingly, the show wasn't as boring as usual so we stayed until almost the end. Of course we had to leave a little bit early to get prime stalking spots as the stars left. Some red carpet sightings (left to right): Rachael Ray, Susan Lucci (Erica Kane, AMC), Tyra Banks, Anthony Geary (Luke Spencer, GH), Brian Kerwin (Charlie Banks, OLTL) and Tuc Watkins (David Vickers, OLTL, and Bob Hunter, Desperate Housewives), Sherri Shepherd (The View). (Click images to enlarge.)
Some of my favorites (left to right): My boyfriend, Michael Easton!!! (John McBain, OLTL), Kristen Alderson (Starr Manning, OLTL), Roger Howarth (ex-Todd Manning, OLTL, Paul Ryan, GL), Tracey Bergman (Lauren Fenmore, Y&R), Daniel Goddard (Cane Ashby, Y&R), Cameron Mathison (Ryan Lavery, AMC, host of DTE 2008, Dancing with the Stars 2007), Jeanne Cooper (Katherine Chancellor, Y&R, Corbin Bernsen's mom in real life).
Other noteworthy sightings:
  • Aiden Turner (Aidan Devane, AMC) Got a picture with him; he seemed very shy.
  • Alicia Minshew (Kendell Hart, AMC)
  • Ellen Wheeler (Exec Producer, GL, ex-Cindy Chandler, AMC)
  • Thorsten Kaye (Zach Slater, AMC) He's kinda an ass, but I did get a picture with him.
  • Heather Tom (Katherine Logan, B&B, ex-Kelly Cramer, OLTL) Got a picture with her.
  • Bryan Dattilo (Lucas Roberts, DOOL)
  • Darin Brooks (Max Brady, DOOL) Jilly G got a picture with him.
  • Jason Cook (ex-Shawn Brady, DOOL)
  • Judi Evans (Bonnie Lockhart, DOOL) Got a good close-up picture of her.
  • Rachel Melvin (Chelsea Benson, DOOL) Very nice; got a picture with her.
  • Thaao Penghlis (Tony Dimera, DOOL) Jilly G got a picture with him.
  • Greg Vaughan (Lucky Spencer, GH)
  • Kirsten Storms (Maxie Jones, GH)
  • Rebecca Herbst (Elizabeth Webber, GH) Got a picture with her.
  • Rick Hearst (Ric Lansing, GH)
  • Ron Hale (Mike Corbin, GH) Got a picture with him.
  • Brandon Buddy (Cole Thornhart, OLTL) Got a picture with him.
  • Bree Williamson (Jessica/Tess, OLTL)
  • Robert Woods (Bo Buchanan, OLTL)
  • Adrienne Frantz (Amber Moore, Y&R) Got a great picture with her at the end of the night.
  • Amelia Heinle (Victoria Newman, Y&R, ex-Mia Saunders, AMC) Got a picture with her.
  • Bryton McClure (Devon Hamilton, Y&R) Got a picture with him.
  • Christel Khalil (Lily Winters, Y&R) Got a picture with her.
  • Christian LeBlanc (Michael Baldwin, Y&R) Got a great close-up picture of him on the red carpet.
  • Don Diamont (Brad Carlton, Y&R)
  • Doug Davidson (Paul Williams, Y&R) Jilly G got a picture with him.
  • Elizabeth Hendrickson (Chloe Mitchell, Y&R, ex-Frankie/Maggie Stone, AMC)
  • Greg Rikaart (Kevin Fisher, Y&R)
  • Kate Linder (Esther Valentine, Y&R)
  • Kristoff St. John (Neil Winters, Y&R) Carrie-ITC babysat his cute little daughter while he was taking pictures with us.
  • Michael Graziadei (Daniel Romalotti, Y&R) Got a great picture with him at the end of the night.
  • Peter Bergman (Jack Abbott, Y&R, ex-Cliff Warner, AMC)
  • Thad Luckinbill (JT Hellstrom, Y&R) Got a picture with him.
  • Vail Bloom (Heather Stevens, Y&R) Got a great picture with her at the end of the night.
  • Barbara Walters Talked to her while standing at the hostess stand in a restaurant; she's not overly friendly like most daytime stars.

Cheers to another successful stalking outing (and not getting arrested)! (Click here to see ALL pictures.)

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Everybody Loves a Parade

...Even our four-legged friends. The Santa Barbara Dog Parade is a big deal each summer - I'm talking people come from miles around, spend a year getting their dog floats ready, 1200 dogs participate, and the Big Dog Foundation donates millions of dollars for charities helping dogs, children, and dogs that help people. They even made a film (a "dogumentary") that premiered at the Santa Barbara film festival in January. This year The Dog Whisperer, Cesar Millan, was the grand marshall. Here he is waving to me.....well, in my general direction.
You know those pictures of dogs dressed up that are entitled "This is why I hate my owner"? I wish I could've read the thought bubbles of all the dogs in the parade, because I'm sure that's exactly what they were thinking. However, always one to exploit cute-ness, I have tons of pictures. I couldn't even decide which ones were more "awwww" than the next, so I just posted them all. If your dog happens to chew through the power cord while you're viewing this page, he may be sending you a message that he won't be receptive to these potential Halloween costumes. (Click images to enlarge.)
2007 champion and co-star of Unleashed: A Dogumentary

Monday, June 2, 2008

The China Monologues

How to sum up the most amazing trip of my life...? First, we must all thank my BFF Jilly G for making the trip and my oh-so-informative recaps possible. As I alluded to before, I am the ultimate SWF-esque imitator of all my friends, so there's no way I would've ever thought, "Hey, I think I'll go to China to run in the Great Wall Marathon and then go hang out in Hong Kong for a while" on my own. I'm just not that brave. She is, though, and I owe so much of my currently-fabulous life to her. Next, I must thank The Wonderful Husband for putting up with my stress-mood-swings before leaving, lack of communication during, jet-lag whining upon returning, and of course the financial backing for this little jaunt to boost the Chinese economy.

Significant discoveries:

  • Toilets: 'Nuff said. I hear they're like that some places in Europe also, but fortunately I did not experience it while I was there making this my first exposure to such hideous-ness.
  • LIT (Lost in Translation): "What?! You mean not everyone in the whole wide world speaks English?!" Oh, how arrogant we are! The funniest part is that in the US if we don't understand someone, we just say "I don't know", whereas in China everyone is so polite that they just nod. So you think they understand you, but alas, it's usually an LIT moment. I vow to be more patient with non-English speakers at home in California (of which there are millions).
  • Money math: Having to divide everything by 7 to figure out the money conversion was really a stretch to my 10th-grade-level math skills. I ended up writing out a little cheat sheet of 10HKD=1.28USD, 20HKD=2.56USD, etc. I highly recommend this to other math illiterates while traveling.
  • Time math: Most of the clocks are in military time, which I can do, fortunately. The time-zone - not so much. "What time is it there?" has always been one of my most frequently used phrases.
  • Metric system math: Seriously, everyone uses it - why don't we? The marathon organizers said "We have distance markers throughout the course and for our American friends we even put it in miles". How embarrassing!
  • Geography: Two months ago I couldn't even pick out China on a map. I'm happy to say I am no longer the stereotypical American Geogr-illiterate.
  • Pollution: Beijing makes LA smog look pristine.
  • Humidity: (You know I don't go a day without commenting on or complaining about the weather.) Hong Kong makes Florida look like a dry desert.

So ends my adventure. I learned a lot, saw a lot, and spent a lot, which makes it the perfect vacation! (Click here to see ALL pictures.)