Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Front Row at Dancing With The Stars!!!

Who knew that 3 months ago, as I would be sitting in the studio audience of Dancing With The Stars and in front row no less! WOW!! Mariah and I went and we had a BLAST!! I loved every minute of it... it's a DWTS fan's ultimate wet dream!! (sorry, had to say it!) LOL!! It's filmed next to The Grove in LA and in the CBS lot - which is funny because it's an ABC show (from BBC) Keeping up?

OK, so to start, I won tickets for DWTS at an online charity auction. We were sent information and yesterday, got dressed in fancy cocktail attire and drove to The Grove. We parked and waited in line for about 1/2 hour before being let in at the VIP gate. I overheard some girls who were "not on the list" walk past us in a huff and openly declare, "I guess we've got $#itty seats!"

After going through security, we waited for another 20 minutes. By this time my 4 inch rhinestone heels were starting to throb. I saw other folks - who didn't read the "no cell phone no cameras" warning in their instructions get their stuff taken away from them (to be returned upon exiting).

We were finally lead into the studio and it looks exactly the way it does on TV - twinkling lights and all! The seats had all people's names on it and I pulled excitedly on Mariah's arm when I saw our seats - corner, front row seats on the same side as the judges! We were only 7 seats away from Carrie Ann. We tried to contain our excitement and just said F-it and started to do high-fives as others watched in envy. They were awesome seats - we couldn't help it!

There was one Master of Ceremonies that was giving directions to the audience of when to clap and how loud. He basically entertained the crowd while props were being set up for Usher's performance! It was cool because the taping of this performance is actually for the finals so the whole studio was in full regalia. I noticed the trophy ball right away and the banners and thought, hey, this isn't the finals, but it made sense when the judges came out and the crowd cheered. Bruno was dressed in his famous white tux only reserved for the finals.

Usher performance was truly entertaining. The moves in their choreagraphed dance was tres cool! While they were setting up for the set, the MC had some little giveaways for anyone that can answer some DWTS trivia... and guess who won herself a gift card?!! Yeah, he asked the audience which two stars were the first to get eliminated! My hand shot straight to the air, he asked my name and then I gave the answer: "Penn & Monica Seles" and was right!! Whoo hooo!!

So Usher and the dancers performed two sets for next week... then all of a sudden the show started and it was truly a one-hour LIVE show!! This week, it was also the finals for the Dancing With The Stars Kid's Ballroom Competition. Those little kids were so fun and entertaining to watch! (Man, I sound like Bruno...) All my votes that night went to the cute filipino kids, Jaryd and Cara! Well, they were, to me, the most entertaining of the three!

The best part is the judges choosing Kristi and Mark to perform their tango from last week! Man, she's good!! As you can see above, I reall, really enjoyed their performance... ok, ok, I was clapping the whole time I sat there! So sue me! ;)

It went by too fast... and I was sad to see Marissa go. Her kind speech of gratitude touched me. She had tears, but they were happy ones too! After they dismissed us from the taping, Mariah and I headed out to the grove. We were starving after hours of not being able to drink, text.. or anything!! ;) We ended up at Morels French Steakhouse and it was, as Len would say, "Three words: FAB-U-LOUS!!!" I will be yelping that! Look on for Jenny "Traveling Foodie" D.'s profile


Friday, May 02, 2008

Taking the plate at Dodger Stadium!!

Man oh man!! Of ALL the days not to have my camera!! My firm's Quarterly Staff Meeting was held at Dodger Stadium today!! We had plenary sessions at the Dodger Stadium Club house, a catered lunch, had access to the ultra private Dodger's Club, got to hang out at the Dodger dugout, has a private tour of the Dodger locker room (lots of fan mail still waiting in the bins!!) and best of all, for those who stood in line for half an hour - we each put a helmet on, got 10 pitches and got the chance to hit one out on the field! My bat connected 7 times and I got to hit to the infield 4 was soooooooo friggin' cool! A big plus was the reception with famous Farmer John's Dodger Dogs, cool appetizers and a cool bar tender! It's been years since I've been back to the stadium and now I want to go to a game! Any takers??!?!?!