Wednesday, August 13, 2008

It was a little slice of small town Americana; a group of town folk gathered together in a nice community bonding experience. The fact that the town is LA is probably surprising. I went to a free screening of The Incredibles in the middle of a trendy shopping 'mall' in Los Angeles -- The Grove -- one of the busiest and most popular shopping attractions in town. [My sister and her sister-in-law took our little 'niece' who was mesmerized watching the dancing waters fountain at The Grove.]

Families and movie lovers filled bleachers and the makeshift outdoor theatre for the event which the Grove called Movies in the Park. As we approached the viewing area, I was taken aback at the size. For some reason I thought it was going to be in the Pan Pacific Park next to The Grove. The park was actually an intimate patch of lawn inside the 'mall' that could possibly fit 3 or 4 Hummers. Luckily we arrived well-ahead of the start time to set up our picnic area. Some of us on the lawn were within a yard of each other while we sprawled on our blankets and quilts. It was amazing to have so many people in a relatively small space, yet it was good vibes all around. Little ones crawled up to say hello, while a well-behaved mini greyhound tentatively tried to make friends with us.

I felt like I was picnicking with a bunch of family and friends. We had the pleasure of watching a movie under the stars, while thankfully being spoiled with creature comforts close by... like Surf City Squeeze, Barnes & Noble, restaurants, clean public bathrooms, etc. I could never have survived at Woodstock!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

THE PASSWORD IS... TELEPATHY! The CBS game show PASSWORD hosted by Regis Philbin was taping in LA for a few days and in a fit of mild adventure-seeking I decided to attend. I know, you're saying:, "that's not much of an adventure!" Au contraire, mon frere. You try navigating LA traffic, seeking a quick bite to eat so you don't faint in the TV studio, waiting in line during the summertime (anti-perspirant anyone?) and act like a professional game show audience member.

But, if you’re at all the curious sort and up for just about anything, then I say: what the heck, why not? You get a peek at behind-the-scenes professional precision and the occasional screw-up. Plus you get to see one of your favorite celebrities.

I can’t mention any specifics about what happened during the game, because all the audience members had to sign a confidentiality agreement. But since Regis was on the Late, Late Show talking about it, I guess I can at least mention something. The reason I went was to see Craig Ferguson. Or as Regis would say in his “Scottish” accent: Crrrrrrrrrrayg Ferrrrrrrrrrrguson.” But I don't want to have the wrath of the CBS legal department on my behind so all I'll say is -- they were fun, the show is exciting and fun!!

I thought I might have a good chance at winning a prize for audience members, like a T-shirt, tickets to the Laugh Factory or a spa getaway …but no, nothing, nada, bupkiss! Some of the trivia questions thrown at us were for die hard game show viewers. And I thought I had a pretty good knowledge of pop cultural trivia. I groused: "Why didn't they ask something like: what was the name of the pig in Green Acres?" My sister looked at me, her jaw dropped and she said, "OHMYGAWD! I was thinking the same thing!" We just had a sibling mind-meld!

Guess I had an adventure into the twilight zone ...