Monday, January 28, 2008

Kir Royales At the Roosevelt Hotel

I don't think I've had a Kir Royale in at least four years, but when Katya ordered one Friday night at the Roosevelt Hotel, it just seemed like the way to go. Our new Hollywood elite gathered at the famed hotel to show those Tinsel Town partiers what a good time really is. The elite, shown posing here for the paparazzi, included Katya, Gabe, myself, Assaf and Fabulous Patti. Unfortunately, Assaf and Gabe only made brief appearances, but Katya, Patti and I kept the party going. We met some guy from England whose name I can't remember, but he was nice. He was in town on business and was quite lucky to stumble upon our company. We also tried to go to Teddy's, an old school Hollywood lounge in the Roosevelt that I'd read about in the New York Times (yes, I live in California, but I read about Los Angeles destinations in a New York paper).

What the New York Times failed to mention, however, is that Teddy's is apparently super exclusive, and without a reservation or a spot on the guest list, you're not getting in. So we were turned away. While I had previously just been curious about Teddy's, I now have to see what's in there. Not that I'm into super exclusive clubs, but once I was denied access, it became a challenge. You can bet I'll figure out how to get myself a reservation the next time I'm in L.A. Our swank Roosevelt evening was just one of the mini-adventures I had on my mini-vacation last week. Lots of fun times were had, and here are some highlights. They're in no particular order, including chronological, so don't even try.

I had exactly one celebrity sighting. Okay, this guy isn't really that famous, but he's a good actor, which counts as celebrity in my book. On Saturday morning I ran into... well, ran by, really... Matthew Mahar as he and I were both jogging. He has done a bunch of movies and television, but he really impressed me last year in Berkeley Rep's production of The Pillowman. He was amazing. He also had a small role in the Kevin Smith film Jersey Girl, which I remember because he utters the best line in the whole movie. You may not think that's much of an accomplishment, given the poor press Jersey Girl got, but it's not such a bad film. I've seen much worse. Anyway, I had occasion to meet Matthew through my job while he was doing Pillowman, and I briefly considered saying hello on Saturday. But I decided against it in part because we were both exercising and in part because stopping him on the street to reminisce about making his acquaintance a year ago might have been a little creepy and weird.

Since I was in the Movie Capital of the World, I decided to take in a movie. I saw Juno, and it was super duper cute! Oh, my goodness, it was so good. Do I think it is a Best Picture? Well, maybe not. And I'm not as enamored of the screenplay (or screenwriter, for that matter) as the rest of the known universe seems to be. But what makes this film so fantastic, in my opinion, is the acting. Star Ellen Page is every bit as good as everyone says she is and then some. She just takes no prisoners. In fact, everyone in this film is phenomenal. The actor who plays Juno's father is terrific, and Michael Cera... well, I just want to hug him, he's so cute. Oh, yes, it's so good. Plus, I saw it at an independent theatre; so I only paid $7.50 for an evening screening. That's a 2007 film for 1997 prices!

On Saturday afternoon I got together with my friend Jon from high school, whom I hadn't seen since 2001. In the last six years, he and his wife Holly have created another human being, and I got to meet that human: their two-year old son Milo. Holly was at a meeting on Saturday; so Jon, Milo and I took a light rail ride into South Pasadena for coffee (none for Milo, though). Milo's fascination with the train gave Jon and me a chance to catch up, and we talked about everything from our high school classmates to Los Angeles real estate to music. Jon used to work in the music industry and is as big a music fan as I am, if not bigger. You know I always love talking music.

Hey, wait a second, Jon's neighbor Garrett is an actor and has had a degree of success. I met him, which I guess means I had two celebrity sightings during this trip. Oh, and my friend Assaf is an actor and is doing rather well. Okay, fine, there were celebrities all over the place.

On Thursday, I had dinner with my friend Jonah, whom I hadn't seen in almost 13 years. 13 years! Jonah and I know each other from college, and it was wonderful to reconnect. Plus, he took me to that restaurant-bar with all the hot guys (see January 24th post). I was certainly grateful for that.

All in all, it was a rather successful trip. And I anticipate more good times when I go back to L.A. next month.

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