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Who I’ve run into in Starbuck’s in Hollywood in the last year

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Anyone who knows me knows I enjoy television and movies based entertainment.

I have spent a fair bit of time in and around Hollywood, and have yet to meet one celebrity type since I have been here in the last year who I actually want to shake their hand and tell them:

“Fantastic job”

Not one.

For instance, just now, Megan Fox came in with her significant other.

Quite frankly, she doesn’t hold a candle with her attractiveness in contrast to a LOT of other women who come into Starbuck’s.

And it’s kind of funny. As I sit here thinking that I have single handedly worked on the vast majority of satellite software code that handedly pinpointing anyone’s position with GPS. When you check into many hotels in the world, that’s my software. When you withdrawal money from the bank, part of that is my software.

Which has really begun to put things into perspective.

What did Megan Fox do? She shook her ass on a screen and got paid a million dollars for it.

So far. No one has shook my hand for what I have done.

Not even so much as a thank you.

But I am finding – that’s ok.

I don’t mind the obscurity as much as I thought I would.

But this also has me looking at someone like her and thinking.

A nice ass and tits are a dime a dozen nowadays. And yours, are cute, don’t get me wrong, but what have you really done other than what any good stripper would do which is shake that ass for a buck?

In any case.

It was Michael Bay who entertained me with Transformers.

Now THAT man I would like to shake his hand.

Forrest Whittaker was in here with his daughter the other day.

A few people knew him professionally in here.

But being real.

What has he done to impress me?

Nothing really.

He entertained me. Don’t get me wrong.

But he entertained a few million.

So what’s the point of saying to a man like this ‘good job’.

He hears it all the time.

Unlike most programmers who receive a rash of shit and hate and we only get feedback when we’ve fucked something up.

I’m convinced it’s all the negative energy of my mistakes which has led me to the real life manifestation of pressure which caused me a drug addiction and has invariably wound up with me homeless.

Whittaker played a few memorable characters.

Don’t get me wrong.

But did he work on guidance and navigation code and communication code like I did which allows the satellites to distribute the movies he and many like him are on?

Who gets the credit?

Not the guy behind the curtain, that’s for sure.

The guy from Fargo – that’s how I knew him – I still have a hard time remembering his name as well as I remember my real friends who I doubt walk this planet any longer…

What’s his name? William H Macy.

I had to use IMDB to look that up.

Memorable face. I didn’t like Fargo. And I don’t know what else he did for entertainment.

Someone spotted him as he came to kick back and asked me to hold the camera for him to take a picture of the man with him.

I was nonplussed.

This isn’t jaded. It’s just. Nonplussed. Use the second definition of that to understand what I am referring to. The first definition says surprised, which I was not. Unsure how to react.

Nonplussed.

After the picture. I think he could tell I was nonplussed.

I like that word. Nonplussed.

So he sat and relaxed at the chair at the table I was on “Mind if I sit here” – he asked. me “all yours” I responded.

For an hour he kicked back and read the paper.

I sat and worked on my holodeck program.

No words exchanged. I had my headset on, listening to Avicii.

Being real. William Macy – looking at your resume on IMDB – you’ve been in some really great flicks. Jurassic Park. The Lincoln Lawyer. Thank you for Smoking  (loved that one), heck you even went uncredited for being in Wargames.

So don’t get me wrong, My Macy, I have a great deal of respect for your work. But I analogize what you have done to meeting a decent programmer who’s worked as a consultant for 10 firms.

I fixed the Foreign Exchange for Wells Fargo.

What have you done?

While you have had a memorable face, and with one glaring exception – Fargo – you have chosen your career options with calculated precision and that truly is the extent of what you’ve done.

Don’t get me wrong. This is not to say I do not respect you.

I do.

But I’d rather sit across the table and have a conversation with a man named James Dunn who single handedly sold Microsoft’s SQL Server to this world in my opinion.

And HE wasn’t horribly interesting.

But he did introduce me to Thai food.

I said “hey” as my friend walked out the door the other day.

Erik Estrada – the same guy from the old television show CHiPs turned and smiled at me – thinking I was talking to him.

“Oh sorry. Not you – Ray – behind you – have a good night man.”

It was almost like I’d broken his heart.

Erik, don’t get me wrong bud, but I have a shitload of friends – who are no longer with us – they were replaced by robots – who have memorable faces too. In fact. I have about 10,000 people I have worked with over the years who have memorable faces too.

So when I hear someone say ‘do you know Erik?’, I immediately think back to my friend from ASU who I was always jealous of for the quality of women he could get. Eric Hilleboe.

“No, not that Erik,”  which immediately has me thinking of Eric the Red – the first Viking explorer who actually found America – 400 years before Columbus.  Columbus ain’t the first just in case you’re a historian buff. That’s Catholic and Spanish propaganda.

You might confuse me by saying “No, not that Erik,” because then I might think of my old friend Eric Matis who went on to become Vice President of Playboy. Again. another Eric I am jealous of.

You might leave me scratching my head by saying “No not that Eric,” because then I might think you’re referring to my childhood friend – Eric – a neighbor who used to live across the street from me.

I might bitch slap you if you said no again and kept me guessing.

At which point a light bulb might come into my head seeing the man’s face and saying:

“Ponch” (Erik Estrada’s nickname in CHIPS).

In any case. Besides having memorable faces and bodies.

What I am coming to realize is.

RARELY does an actor actually act.

Most read lines. From a script.

Like a robot.

Now I have nothing against robots.

They can be quite brilliant at times.

But most actors are decidedly not actors.

They’re script readers.

And being here in Hollywood, I think it’s setting in – why I never wanted to be an actor myself.

They don’t seem to think outside of a simplistic ‘look at me and how cool and pretty I am’.

George Clooney. I don’t think you’re a good actor. In fact. You suck as an actor. Giant monkey balls.

BUT YOU TRY to be one. Whether it’s “Men who Stare at Goats” or “Oceans 11” – not only do you provide a notable presence on that screen – but you bring with it personality and class.

You clearly don’t just read lines. You try to be yourself and insert your own personality into these characters. In fact. you go overboard with this. But I have the distinct feeling who you are and who the character is that you’re portraying is a line you’re still trying to figure out. Which is what makes you an actor – but not a good one.

Look at someone like Al Pacino. He did the SAME exact thing. He had no versatility as an actor. He merely put himself o the screen. But he did it well. That’s not acting. That’s stage presence.

But look at someone like Brad Pitt.

When he played the crazy guy in 12 Monkeys. HE WAS that crazy man. When he played Tyler Durden in The Fight Club. He was absolutely, undeniably – Tyler Durden. His body – and his language – reeked of character.Ditto for Inglorious Bastards, Legends of the Fall, Brad Pitt – doesn’t just put himself in the character. He gets into the mind of these characters.

Which to some degree is like playing with fire.

Look at Christian Bale and American Psycho. Batman. The Mechanics. Arguably one of our generation’s best actors who not only plays these roles. But he IS that role. You half wonder if he’s got a chainsaw at home and pays Chinese people for cloned humans for him to dice up.

Or whether he’s Dexter in real life, and police just choose to look the other way because he’s doing them a service.

Jamie Lee Curtis – I ran into at the Four Seasons in Maui when I was on my Honeymoon. For three days, I resisted wanting to shake her hand. but the truth of the matter was – she’d played a GREAT jealous housewife trying to discover her husband’s truth in True Lies. I should know. This life was the life I wished I could have told people about with my own background. In Trading Places she was the memorable prostitute.

So the fact of the matter is – Jamie Lee Curtis isn’t just real with her acting and DOESNT just read lines off a movie script like a robot.

SHE actually puts herself out there and TRIES to act.

For that. I tried shaking her hand. And for that. I got face to face with her body guard.

Jamie. Even though you’re a paranoid freak.

You still impressed me.

Being in Hollywood has been a lesson in reality.

I’ve created the software and support systems which has made this country what it is today, and is the solitary reason Hollywood is still on this map.

This isn’t narcissism. It’s just me being real.

Do I need or want credit for it?

I sincerely don’t know.

To some degree. taking credit for my work scares me because of how I have judged those entertaining me.

But the truth of the matter is this:

I only became better with what I did through harsh criticism that I often did not want to hear.

And maybe – Hollywood’s been living in an isolated shell and needs to understand it’s obligations not just to itself – but to this world – to do better with what we have.

Mr Macy. I enjoyed not talking to you.

That was refreshing. Just to hang out.

Jett. Another person who can be seen in Starbuck’s – who’s John Travolta’s son. I’d like to shake the hand of your father and thank him for being real and helping me understand anyone can play any role they want to.

Jett. You’ve got quite the life ahead of you. To follow in the footsteps of your father is quite the monumental task ahead of you. But in the brief moment I met you – you already have the stage presence to become that man. The question is: do you want it?

I dont. I like being behind the scenes. To this day.

But even my types need credit for the work we do.

In my life, I have met a bunch of celebrities.

But what I am realizing is.

No one has been more famous and important to me.

Than the people who I once called friends and lovers.

Spencer. Bill. Ron. Jeff. Lisa. Jackie. Kena. Kevin.

I could go on.

But what’s the point?

The real celebrities were around me the entire time and I never knew it.  Hollywood is nothing more than the shallow shell of what could be, but what isn’t, because everyone’s too busy chasing the dollar and reading from a script without the desire nor inclination to take the time to learn how to be real.

Which in my opinion.

Forrest Whittaker.  You sat with your daughter in a Starbuck’s. As a common man

William Macy. You sat across from a homeless man in a Starbuck’s. As a common man.

For that. I shake your hand.

At least you’re trying to ‘put yourself out there’ by taking the ‘risk’ to get to know the world around you which actually made and supported you becoming who you are.

I can’t say the same thing about the vast majority of stars.

Who i am convinced are all barricaded behind walls with security guards awaiting the apocalypse – all too afraid to come out.

Even Brad Pitt.

What’s wrong with hanging with the locals?

Are you that afraid of that which you have created?

Yes I tend to ramble. And yes I can be crazy at times.

That’s just me being me.

Get over it.

All of you.

I want my friends and part of my life back.

Not all of it mind you. Too f’in stressful!

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