01 Jan 2013 in Review
In writing my 2013 end of the year wrap-up, the word that continually pops into my head is “eclectic”. The word eclectic is defined as inclusion of a broad range of tastes and sources. I could stop this annual anecdotal report with that sentiment, but, (as always) I have many examples to share.
2013 is the year that I had many ups and a few downs. Highlights for me include attending an outdoor Arizona wedding of my baby cousin, celebrating the film, STAND BY ME’s 25th Anniversary and launching my New York City stage debut with my one-man show, DON’T CALL ME WALTER! As an official selection for the United Solo Theatre festival, it was sold-out in the midst of the theatre district.
Low points for me include signing-up, registering and losing out to attend the official Comic-Con convention in San Diego, and being (verbally) disciplined by a masseur manager for “being too loud” as I screamed in pain from a deep tissue massage. (He quipped that I was scaring the other clients). High points for me in 2013 include seeing many great films. From seeing an advanced press screening of Ron Howard’s RUSH to seeing my two favorite films of 2013: PHILOMENA and THE BOOK THIEF, I am forever grateful on the power that movies can give our lives.
My eclectic year extends to many “firsts” for me as well as the beginning for many new experiences. First experiences include walking the red carpet to press shout-outs at the AFI Film Festival, styling a good friend for the Cannes Film Festival, winning a scavenger hunt competition on Hollywood Boulevard. and taking my Fuzzy-Faced boy, Rocco, on his first airplane ride. A couple of first experiences from this year have also led to addictions. This year was the first year that I have used (and purchased) an iPad, a gadget that I can never let go. And, this year is the first year that I tried dining at a lobster food truck. (This resulted in a true addiction for me).
This year is also the year that I’ve “started” new experiences. From beginning a pen-pal relationship with a good friend from high school, to joining a high-profile performance group, The Indigo Children, and registering as a Heritage auction client (to bid on celebrity memorabilia), I can sense the start of new, ongoing experiences. Even my dog, Rocco, had his “first”. Like the Brady Bunch, he has also added a new family member: a mixed breed dog/cousin named Oliver.
Crime was another (unfortunate) highlight for me in 2013. Earlier this year, I was accused and searched for shoplifting at a Blockbuster Video in Arizona. (A crime that I did not do, nor would commit). Several months later, I became the victim of undesirable activity. From being stalked by an eighty-five year old woman at a Goodwill in Crenshaw, to having my car robbed of credit card numbers and cash in a parking lot one-thousand feet from the police station, I’ve had experiences that I would rather not have.
Fortunately, 2013 also brought me moments where I was proclaimed “a winner”. There are many examples, from this year, that showcase my winning streak. From winning a Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS silent auction in order to work with WICKED’s “Elphaba”: Shoshana Bean to winning a Christmas cookie decorating contest during the month of December, I am proud of my victories.
To round out my year of eclectic activity, I have to share random experiences that made me smile. From attending a “Drag Queen Brunch” in New York City to sitting at an Academy Awards rehearsal to hear Jennifer Hudson sing “And I am Telling You” followed by Catherine Zeta-Jones singing “All That Jazz” and the cast of LES MISERABLES perform as an ensemble, I’ve had many moments that brought a smile to my face. Other eclectic moments include having Melanie Griffith personally invited to join me in an intimate birthday dinner and receiving an umbrella from the New York City Hilton hotel for their “Random Acts of Kindness Day”. Probably the most random moment for me in 2013 was being the recipient of Jon Hamm’s (personal) cupcakes from his dressing room at the ESPY Awards. It was an eclectic moment, indeed.
As I look back on the year that was, I am forever proud of my eclectic experiences. I will proudly embrace the word “eclectic”. I am a firm believer that living a life layered with eclectic activity and moments allows one to be a fully rounded, exposed individual.
To all of you, I wish a new year full of positive, eclectic moments…..to enrich your lives for good. Much love to you all……..