Guns At Work

Watching the newest episode of The Mentalist reminded me of a funny story.

Last week at work, I was at the museum when the following happened:

Actor Owain Yeoman, who plays Wayne Rigsby on The Mentalist (which films at the Warner Bros. lot in Burbank, CA), was in the museum. He was there with some friends and family members. His wife, the beautiful and talented Lucy Davis, was there with him. She’s a doll, by the way, totally unassuming and so cheerful.

Owain was in costume that afternoon, which means he pretty much looked like a business man on a break (no jacket). He didn’t really stand out that much from anyone else in the museum, except that he’s strikingly tall and thin, not to mention quite handsome.

Perhaps it was the way he was chatting and laughing with his posse, or maybe it’s just his natural, easygoing manner, but there’s nothing really about Owain that screams “celebrity.” So most people probably wouldn’t pick him out as an actor, let alone as one of the stars of TV’s highest-rated dramas (Biased opinion? Not really. Well, maybe just a little.).

Anyway, after perusing the first floor of the museum, Owain, Lucy and their family and friends headed to the second floor to check out the props and costumes from all the Harry Potter films.

At the museum, there are security officers on both floors, wandering around to make sure no one messes with the props or costumes. There are also docents, retired employees, who volunteer a morning or an afternoon to spend in the museum, answering questions from guests about Warner Bros. The docents are our link to the past, some of them having been at Warner Bros. since the days of Jack Warner.

When one of the docents saw Owain showing his friends and family the Harry Potter exhibit, she became quite concerned.

Approaching one of the security guards, she whispered, “Is he allowed to have a gun in here?”

I guess she’s never seen The Mentalist.

The gun is just a prop, ma'am.

Reading Material

I may be in trouble.

I found a great used bookstore called The Iliad (it used to be next to a video store called The Odyssey). My friend Jenny and I went there the other night. They have a cat that only has one eye (she looks like a pirate), and TONS of books. We only spent an hour there, yet I managed to find 5 books I needed to buy.

Then, when I got home, I had two more books waiting for me that I’d ordered from Amazon.

In my defense, one of the books I bought is for my dad’s birthday. 🙂

But the other six? Yep, they’re for me.

The books I bought are:

by William Golding

by David McCullough

by Stephen King

Now I just need some time off from work and all my other responsibilities so I can read them!

What books are you reading?

Casting Call: “Superman: Man of Steel”

I’m gonna go ahead and just throw this out there:

I think Leonardo DiCaprio should play Superman.

There, I’ve said it.

In election-speak, Leonardo DiCaprio is my write-in vote. He is a gambler, taking risks and choosing projects that are ambitious and on-the-fence (the kind of movies most people would pooh-pooh as “a nice idea, but not box office money”) and turning them into compelling, must-see films, not to mention worldwide blockbusters (Inception, anyone?). With Zack Snyder on board to direct “Superman: Man of Steel,” DiCaprio could be persuaded to sign on and I’d be first in line to buy tickets to see the result of their collaboration.

Plus, he’s tall, handsome, looks good in a suit and he’s an American boy (I’m looking at you, darling Henry Cavill – much as I love you, I don’t think fans would like a Brit playing their beloved Superman).

So while the folks over at Entertainment Weekly (who, I’m pretty sure, don’t have any actual say in the casting of our next Clark Kent) didn’t mention DiCaprio at all in their recent poll, I’m still hoping for a blue-eyed Superman.

And Spain Wins!!

My boys won! I’m so proud of them! And it’s a good thing I don’t have high blood pressure or anything, because those 15-minute quarters of extra time were crazy intense! I don’t think I sat down the entire time. 🙂

And good job, Team Netherlands. Way to make the boys in navy work for it.

So until 2014, viva España!

It’s the World Cup!

Wow, has it been four years already?I’m a little overwhelmed right now, as there are sooo many games to watch. Until the competition starts to really heat up and losers are sent home, there’s almost too much going on.

Thank goodness for DVR, eh?

According to Wikipedia.org, the first two World Cup matches took place simultaneously on July 13, 1930, and were won by France and USA, who defeated Mexico 4–1 and Belgium 3–0 respectively. The first goal in World Cup history was scored by Lucien Laurent of France. In the final, Uruguay defeated Argentina 4–2 in front of a crowd of 93,000 people in Montevideo, and in doing so became the first nation to win the World Cup.

The World Cup is the most widely viewed sporting event in the world; an estimated 715.1 million people watched the final match of the 2006 World Cup held in Germany. 715 million people?? That’s mind- boggling. The current World Cup is being held in South Africa (it started June 11  and will end July 11), and the 2014 World Cup will be held in Brazil.

During the 18 tournaments that have been held, seven national teams have won the title. Brazil have won the World Cup a record five times, and they are the only team to have played in every tournament. Italy, the current champions, have won four titles, and Germany are next with three titles. The other former champions are Uruguay, winners of the inaugural tournament, and Argentina, with two titles each, and England and France, with one title each.

I think it’s time for a USA win.

But… I don’t think it’s gonna happen. Let’s face it, soccer (or “football,” as it’s known everywhere else in the world) is not really a priority here in the United States. Baseball is our favorite spring pastime, American football our fall fav, basketball is another spring fav, but soccer? Meh.

Even with the addition of David Beckham to the Los Angeles Galaxy team (yep, L.A. has a professional soccer team), soccer is not a big priority on the DVR list.

There are a bajillion movies about football, basketball, baseball, hockey, running, and even surfing, but only a handful of movies about soccer. I can only think of three, two of which are British films (Bend It Like Beckham and the original Fever Pitch), and the other is a lame Will Ferrell comedy (Kicking and Screaming).

So until we start straightening out our priorities, a USA World Cup win ain’t gonna happen. Not for lack of trying or heart, though. We did tie England last week, after all. (Thank you, Robert Green.)

Next up for USA, 11:30amPST tomorrow against Slovenia. We’re scheduled to kick their butts. I’ll be at Disneyland, so it’ll be up to y’all to keep me updated.

The Surreal Life

Today was a bit surreal. But it was also totally awesome.

Two fun things happened today. Read on, dear reader!

Thing one: My tour this morning was a sing-along tour. Yep, we sang. Well, not all of us sang. But me and some of the older women sang “Sisters” from “White Christmas.” Later on our tour, more people chimed in when we sang “Seventy-six Trombones” as we drove around Midwest (aka River City, Iowa from “The Music Man”).

I’ve always thought life should be a musical, so I’m always singing on tour (much to the amusement of my guests). It was so fun today to actually have people singing with me.

Thing two: The Chancellor of Germay came to Warner Bros. today.  She’s quite a remarkable woman, this Angela Merkel. In addition to being the first female Chancellor of Germany, she’s also the second woman to chair the G8 (after Margaret Thatcher from England).

Chancellor Merkel was in Washington for the Nuclear Security Summit. President Barak Obama invited over 40 heads of state and governments to consultations on guarding against unsecured nuclear material. So why exactly is she visiting Los Angeles?

According to the Los Angeles Times, Germany is the fourth-largest source of direct foreign investment in the Los Angeles area, with German-owned and affiliated companies employing nearly 3,000 people. That amounts to about $149 million in wages paid to employees, according to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa’s office.

Her visit to Warner Bros. is just one stop on her 5-day visit to the States. According to Wikipedia, health care reform and problems concerning future energy development have thus far been major issues of her tenure.

I personally have great health benefits, but that’s more a result of my union (yes, I’m union) than anything Warner Bros. is doing. But the environmental stuff? Ah, now there’s where we’re the leaders in the industry.

The Warner Bros. Studios Environmental Initiative is one of the leaders in the entertainment industry. We recycle and reuse EVERYTHING, we’ve installed a solar power system of more than 500 kilowatts (this helps us save about 900 kilowatt hours of energy and $1 million annually), and just last year we completed construction on the first environmentally-efficient soundstage in the industry. And, heck yeah, they gave me a reusable water bottle.

So I can see why Chancellor Merkel would want to visit Warner Bros. We’re the best, anyway. 🙂

Just a few more things about this remarkable woman:

Forbes magazine listed her as the most powerful woman in the world from 2006-2009. Chancellor Merkel has also been the chairwoman of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) since 10 April 2000, and Chairwoman of the CDU-CSU (Christian Social Union) parliamentary coalition from 2002 to 2005.

From 2005 to 2009 she led a grand coalition with the Christian Social Union (CSU), its Bavarian sister party, and the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD), formed after the 2005 federal election on November 22, 2005. In the elections of 27 September 2009, her party, the CDU, obtained the largest share of the votes, and formed a coalition government with the CSU and the Free Democratic Party (FDP). Her government was sworn in on October 28, 2009.

Chancellor Merkel is also a member of the Council of Women World Leaders, an International network of current and former women presidents and prime ministers whose mission is to mobilize the highest-level women leaders globally for collective action on issues of critical importance to women and equitable development.

In 2008, Merkel received the Charlemagne Prize “for her work to reform the European Union”.

And she’s only 55.

Enjoy some pictures from today’s meet-and-greet with the always-dashing Simon Baker, one of the stars of Warner Bros.’s hottest drama The Mentalist.

German Chancellor Merkel meets Australian actor Simon Baker, left, on the back lot of Warner Bros. Studios during her tour of the studio in Los Angeles on Wednesday April 14, 2010. (AP Photo/Paul Buck, Pool)

Simon Baker showing Chancellor Merkel some of the Midwest set. (AP Photo/Paul Buck, Pool)

Chancellor Merkel and Simon Baker (AP Photo/Paul Buck, Pool)

Dr. Zhivago

I just got home from seeing “Dr. Zhivago” on the big screen at Warner Bros.

Beautiful film.

If you ever have a chance to see it on the big screen, do it. It’s not a film to be taken lightly, while at home with the distractions of life readily available.

Also, I vow here and now NEVER to see the remake of “Dr. Zhivago” with Keira Knightly.

I don’t understand why Hollywood insists on remaking films (a remake of “Clue,” really?!?) that are so perfect just the way they are.

“Dr. Zhivago” is a masterpiece. Good job, MGM and David Lean.

(P.S. I saw Bryan Cranston today at work. He was in the museum, just looking at all the stuff.  He’s got hair, so “Breaking Bad” must be on hiatus.)

Oscars – 2010

Sandra Bullock, Ben Stiller, Jeff Bridges

Yep, I watched the show last night. Christa and I watched it later though, starting it around 9:30pm.  Which actually was awesome, because we were able to fast forward through all the commercials, some slow speeches, and all Twilight kids.

I loved NPH’s opening song – he’s so awesome and epic (yay, Barney Stinson!) and it was a great way to kick off the night. Alec and Steve were great hosts – funny, but not overly so, and I liked the simplistic stage dressing. It was a classy night that seemed to move along pretty quickly (or maybe that was just me fast-forwarding through the commercials and slow parts).

I realized, however, that I’d only seen a handful of the movies nominated last night – Star Trek, District 9, and Up… and that’s it!  I saw some of the movies nominated for sound and art awards (like Harry Potter, Transformers, and Sherlock Holmes), but that’s it.

I think it’s a bit strange that I work in the industry, at the best studio in the world (in my humble opinion) and yet I see very few movies. I don’t like to think that I’ve become a movie snob, but I kinda think I have.  It certainly doesn’t help that they do free screenings for us at work about once a month or so (Dr. Zhivago coming up this week!). I don’t know what it is, but I have to really want to see a movie to actually put in the time and money and go see it at the theaters.

The last movie that I saw in theaters was Shutter Island – it was fantastic. Before Shutter Island, the most recent movie I’d seen on the big screen was Sherlock Holmes and I only went to see it because it was my family’s annual Christmas Day movie outing.

Anyway, back to the Oscars.  I thought it was a fun show, a good idea to have two such charismatic hosts.  And I LOVE that they had co-workers of the acting nominees give a little speech. This happened last year at the ceremony and I feel like it truly honored the nominees (as well as having them onstage at the beginning of the show) for their achievements. And Oprah calling you the new American Cinderella? That’s a great consolation prize.

Entertainment Weekly, my go-to source for all things entertainment, has a fun little article that highlights what happened in the press room.  Read the full article here, but my favorite moment comes from Jeff “The Dude” Bridges.

Jeff Bridges, who is more similar to Jeffrey “The Dude” Lebowski than we may have initially realized, was his usual go-with-the-flow self backstage. However, the Best Actor winner did manage to put together a rather lovely metaphor when asked about his personal key to success. “The first thing that pops into my mind is my wife,” Bridges said. “She holds that kite string. She lets me go way out there, and then it’s so sweet being reeled back in. I love coming home.”

Wow. Where’s the man who’ll hold my kite string?  Jeff Bridges, by the way, has been married to his wife for 32 years. It’s possible, Hollywood. If “The Dude” can choose wisely and make it last, so can you. I’m just sayin’…

So another Oscar season is down and done. I wonder what movies from 2010 will be nominated at next year’s ceremony. I nominate the always-captivating and amazing Leonardo DiCaprio for Shutter Island.

I know we’re only three months in, but have you seen any Oscar-worthy films or performances this year?

Geek Out

I try to keep this blog professional (-ish), fun, and entertaining.  I try not to spread the geek on too thick, but it happens sometimes.

Like tonight.

I met Wil Wheaton today.

He was on the lot again to tape an episode of the funniest comedy on TV (The Big Bang Theory) and I ran into him (and Bill) outside the commissary while on a dinner break.  Bill and I are old acquaintances, so we fell into easy conversation, with Wil interjecting every once in a while (I agree, Wil, Tim Burton’s Pee Wee’s Big Adventure is a classic).

It wasn’t a long conversation, I didn’t even properly introduce myself to him (hi, Wil, I’m Emily!), but in those few short minutes, I learned a lot about him.

He’s very sweet: he was on a well-deserved break after 5 days of rehearsals and was about to perform live in front of an audience full of die-hard fans, but he took the time to just chill and chat with Bill and I.  No rush to get back to stage, no impatience, he seemed very content just to hang out for a bit.

He’s a super fan: he was following Bill around like a puppy.  Wil has proudly proclaimed his love for The Big Bang Theory on his blog, and I’m sure he’ll continue to do so for as long as the show is on TV and probably even after that.  Wil is a BBT geek. He was also, I’m pretty sure but my memory could be fuzzy, wearing some shirt that had something to do with sci-fi, computers, or science. I could be totally wrong, but I do remember that his knapsack thingy had an old-school seatbelt buckle.  He looked like a college student who was on the lot to shadow one of his favorite producers of his favorite show.

He’s cute: Yes, the man is, according to IMDb, 37 years old, but without the beard, he’d look like he was only 12. It’s strange for me to think that Wesley Crusher, the heartthrob of my youth, is all grown up, is a husband and a father, is playing evil incarnations of himself, but it’s all true.  He’s still handsome!

He’s a great writer: I already knew this just from reading his blog, but hearing him speak only confirms that he’s smart, reads a lot, and is a great writer.  I’d love to just grab a cup of coffee with Wil and pick his brain about writing.  Mostly, I’d ask him how he tricks himself into just starting (that’s my big problem).

In conclusion, Wil Wheaton is everything I’d hoped he would be.

Wil, if you’re reading this, I’m in the Eagle Rock area every weekend – let’s grab coffee sometime!

Whirlwind Week

Well.

Where to begin.

Last week was a crazy week.  Some major changes started happening at work (I don’t want to go into it here, but if you want to know, email me!), so it was nice to have two days off from work.

Wednesday:

Lunch at the Disney lot with my friend Heather was really fun. I actually spent about an hour and a half there. We accidentally walked through filming of a scene of Brothers & Sisters (look for me!) and accidentally walked into a screening of Tim Burton‘s Alice in Wonderland.  We also ate at the commissary – always fun to eat good food with good friends.  And then, my favorite part, she took me the Lost writers’ office!!  It was magical. 🙂

After lunch, my aunt Lauri and uncle Dave from San Jose met me at Warner Brothers and we spent the afternoon poking around at Gilmore Girls and Chuck sets. They’re big fans of both shows, so it was fun.

The highlight of the day though was getting great seats to a taping of The Big Bang Theory that night.  A friend of mine (he’s awesome and shall remain nameless) got us seats to the show and we spent four hours busting our guts. It was seriously one of the funniest episodes of television I’ve seen in a long time.  I love this show!

Thursday was work again – bleh – but then I had Friday off!  Spent the day doing a lot of chores and errands, which wasn’t as fun. But at least it meant that my weekend was truly my weekend.

I had a great weekend with friends and family and Marvin (my new/used MacBook Pro).

This week has already flown by – turns out days spent working and nights spent with good friends makes for a quick week.

Tomorrow is Friday and I have plans to hang out with a friend until the wee hours of the morning, Saturday morning will find me running around the Rose Bowl, Saturday night I’ll be with my kids, and Sunday I’ll be running at Lake Balboa in the morning and church in the evening!

Whew!

What are y’all up to this weekend?

Valentine’s Day Thoughts

I am going to repost a blog from Donald Miller’s blog.  Sometimes, other people just say it best.

Check out Don’s blog for all the things he shares.  He’s got great wisdom to share and stories to tell.  It really feels like I know him.  Plus, he wrote Blue Like Jazz.

The repost:

A Guest Blog from Dr. Henry Cloud on Valentines Day

by Don on February 14, 2010

Dr. Cloud was kind enough to write a guest blog just for this website. I’m honored. And even more honored because it’s a great one. Sorry I got this up a bit late. We had something of an e-mail mixup. But here are some things to reflect upon as you prepare for bed….

A Few Valentine’s Day Thoughts

By Henry Cloud, Ph.D.

When I first became a Christian, I remember a wise older man told me he wasn’t going to church on Easter. I was surprised, especially in my newfound excitement about the faith.

“What? Why not?” I asked.

“It’s amateur day,” he said. “People go who never go any other day of the year and really aren’t serious about it. So, it is too crowded and I just stay home with God.”

I walked away thinking, “weird.” But there was a point to it…..sometimes “special days” take on a meaning to people as if they are the essence of what they are meant to symbolize and commemorate. Easter should be a day that symbolizes what we realized each and every 365 days: we have a risen Savior. He is alive every day. And then on that day, we celebrate the reality that we have all the year long.

Now, about Valentine’s day…..

Apart from being a windfall for Hallmark, what is it for us? Hopefully, it is also a symbol for what is happening on the other days in the year. For married people and singles in serious relationships, it should be a day that celebrates all of the good stuff you are expressing to each other all year long. No “amateur” day….right? Just as going to church on Easter does not mean a person has faith, neither does breaking down and buying a card for a spouse mean that good things are happening the rest of the year. It should not just be a “cease-fire” where you try to be loving for a day and then devour each other for the rest of the year. It should remind people of what they have and share, and also inspire to continue to practice that kind of love all year long.

Also, remember other people than your spouse or the one you are dating. For other important people in your life, you might let it remind you that they would like to hear from you as well…..(especially Moms….they like this sort of thing).

So, what if it is the worst day of the year for you?

The reality is that it is often a day of reminding some people of what they don’t have and are longing for, single or married. For the married folks, it should be a call to action. Let this day symbolize what you want, and maybe start you off on a little different plan for getting there than the one you have been working so far. Kind of a wake up call if a relationship is not going well. Maybe it can be a day where the two of you think of a new direction for your relationship, possibly even getting some help. But what if you are single?

Many times, Valentines day reminds some singles of what they are long for and have not found. What to do then? Here are a couple of thoughts:

First, see it as a time to celebrate the love that you do have in your life right now: your friends and community, family and friends. Make it a point to let some people know that on Valentines Day you were thinking of all of the sources of love in your life and you wanted to thank them for being one. They will love it, and you will be reminded of how fortunate you are to have them. You will feel more grateful and know that you are not alone on the planet. If you look around and don’t have a community of friends, then make that your first priority. That may be the real reason this day is the worst, as it gets you in touch with a deeper aloneness than not having a Valentine. It may remind you that you are alone. Make finding community the first call to action.

Second, as I mentioned above, see it as a symbol and reminder for what is happening the rest of the year. “Wait a minute….,” you might say. “That is the problem. I don’t have anything going the rest of the year. That is why I am bummed out today!” Ok, good. That is a good awareness to have. So, ask yourself the hard question. “If I don’t like where things are, what am I truly doing about it besides wishing, praying and waiting?” In my book “How To Get A Date Worth Keeping,” I talked about how a lot of Christians approach dating in a very different way than they approach the rest of life, and different that the bible tell us to approach life. They think that somehow God is just going to drop this person into their lives, without their doing anything. Really? Is that how he provided a job for you? Or a church? Or food every day? No….he provided those, but you got off the couch and went looking for it too. He secured the Promised Land for Israel, but Joshua and others had to go possess it with some hard work!

So, maybe it is time to get a plan and think about how you would like for your dating life to look different and start to work it. For some, that might mean some hard stuff….maybe even some therapy to work through some old hurts or fears. For others, it might mean getting out of some comfort zones. Either way, what I have found is that it can be an awesome growth journey when people decide to own it and go for it. Make a commitment that next Valentine’s Day will be different than this one. Even if you are not in a serious relationship by then, you will be having a blast in your dating life.

So, in sum….Valentine’s Day can be a celebration of what you already have, or it can be a wake up call to take God’s hand and find what you haven’t found. Either way, even if it might be a reminder of some disappointment, it can be transformed into hope if you let it jumpstart you to a different future.

Cheers,

Henry

If you’re single, check out Dr. Cloud’s book How to Get a Date Worth Keeping

January, where hast thou gone?

Seriously, time flies!

January has been a crazy month.  I’ve done things I’ve never done before, like play broomball – it’s so much fun!  I’m still running – training for a half marathon and beating personal records.  I’ve also become a big fan of the dash – though I don’t think I use it correctly all the time. Katie, I should’ve paid more attention in college! 😛

Work has been tough this month.  Spiritually and emotionally, it’s not a healthy place for me anymore.  I’ve been really struggling, because I genuinely love my co-workers and manager, and the job itself is still fun.  But there are bigger, stronger things that are overshadowing the joy I have at work, and it makes me sad and sick.  I’m doing okay, still trying to excel at my job, nurture relationships, and love my colleagues.  But I’m also actively pursuing my true passion and calling – TV!  I’m hoping that pilot season gives me an opportunity to work on a TV show at Warner Bros.  Ideally? I’d LOVE to work on The Big Bang Theory, The Mentalist, Shameless, Chuck, or Cold Case, in that order.  I just hate the wait-and-see part.

Luckily, February is here and things are already getting better.  Why?  Because Lost starts again in two days.

Finally!

This is the sixth and final season of Lost, and it’d better be a good one!  I have faith in the show though – I went to a panel with the writers/creators a while ago and just hearing them talk shop for a few hours told me that they are all over this final season and have great things in store for the show.

If you haven’t been watching Lost, then, well, that’s ok.  There’s still plenty of other great TV you can be watching.  To list just a few: The Big Bang Theory, The Mentalist, Caprica, Community, Burn Notice, White Collar, Psych, 30 Rock, and of course, there’s always ER.

But Tuesday night at 9:00pm?  I’ll be watching Lost.

Checking In

Well, Twenty-Ten, how’d we do this week?

It was a great week for me, personally.  If you’re my friend on Facebook, you know that I’ve brought the sexy back this week.  When it rains, it pours!  It’s been fun.

And my co-worker/friend/running guru Sheryl has been kicking my butt and helping me really get in gear for the half marathon I’m going to run.  My favorite thing this week was running on the treadmill (boring) while watching Jeopardy! and Wheel of Fortune (yes, I yelled answers at the tv).

What?  I didn’t tell you?  Yeah, I’m gonna run the Rock and Roll Half Marathon in Los Angeles in October.  Whew!  That’s 13.1 miles, y’all!

Now I’m off to do some chores, hit the gym, and then time with my junior high kids tonight!

OH!  Chuck premieres its third season on SUNDAY on NBC.  Watch it, y’all!  It’s no more Mr. Nice Spy. 🙂