Saturday, May 05, 2007

Happy Cinco de Mayo!

How do you say in Spanish, it's my birthday and I turned 46? Here, let me try.

"El birthday--"

Never mind, It would only just get worse from there.

I'm going to go for a run, then come back and finish the first post of my 46th year.

Here are some pictures (mostly) from yesterday. I'll explain them when I get back.

Hey, I'm back. In case you're wondering, this was my first day back to the gym this year. I lost a lot of ground (and I wasn't that fit to begin with), but at least I had the good sense not to kill myself on my first day back. Anyway, on with the show. . .

My cell phone rang just as I was passing through downtown Los Angeles. It was Rod from the assignment desk. The station needed me to relieve the photographer standing by at the Baldwin/Bassinger court hearing. On the one hand, YIPPEE! I can handle that.

On the other hand, isn't he the Baldwin who hits photographers? (Not that I was worried or anything.)

You already know how that played out. The lawyers had promised to come out and make a statement after the hearing. For whatever reason, they left without making an appearance. Baldwin wasn't even required to be in court, so I found out that he was never there. Everyone who had been there earlier in the day had gotten shots of Bassinger. I would have liked to have gotten a still shot, but I'll get over it.

It was half past six when the desk finally cleared me. The mic stand and all the other crews were long gone by that time.

I thought I was safe for the evening. I was wrong.

You might remember this shot from a few months back when I covered the "Alpha Dog" movie premiere. That's Paris Hilton pulling up in her convertible Bentley.

Recognize the car in the driveway. Okay, shake your monitor or nod your head up and down really quickly. Recognize it now?

I recognized it. As it sat in the driveway of Paris Hilton's house in West Hollywood, I spotted it right off the bat.

It must have been my day to be the relief photographer, because that's what i was doing around 9:00pm last night. We had covered Paris' own court appearance earlier that day and someone back at the station wanted to get footage of her coming and going and you never know when a celebrity might just throw common sense out the door and come over to talk to the media.

It could happen.

Hey, you can laugh all you want, but we're in sweeps, darn it!

One thing that makes these assignments worthwhile to me is the opportunity to meet and talk to people. There were three Paris Hilton fans keeping the media company out on the sidewalk.

Clockwise from the top, that's Anthony, Nereida, and Alma. I'm not a Paris Hilton fan, but they were nice young people and they were having fun just hanging out in the hopes of maybe getting an autograph or a picture of a celebrity whom they enjoy.

Now, it would seriously freak me out if my kids were hanging around in front of a celebrity's house at night, but I don't want to judge it. They caught enough crap from the folks driving by and yelling at them. I hope they weren't bothering Paris Hilton, but I'm sure they weren't doing anything to the people just driving past.

Because I know how dangerous the world can be, I wish they'd find another (safer) way to enjoy their young adulthood. The object of their adulation might not be a choice I understand, but their willingness to brave the cold, the dark, and the slurs of strangers kind of makes me nostalgic for the summer nights of my misspent youth.

Hanging out in front of a celebrity's home? I don't think I really ever did anything like that. Sure, I'm doing it now and I have to admit it was kind of fun.

Just keep in mind, I was getting paid to be there.

By the way, I saw that cat leave from Paris Hilton's yard. I don't know if it's her cat or not, but I'm gonna try to sell the picture to the Enquirer. You never know. They might give me a couple of bucks for it.


Jill said...

Happy Birthday Frank! You and my Mom are both Cinco De Mayo babies! :)

Neighbors driving by and yelling at the fans, not at the media? That must've been refreshing, no?
They look like decent kids ... at least they aren't out drinking and driving. :-P

beFrank said...

Well, to be honest they just drove by and yelled out things like "go home" and "losers"!

I just assumed they were talking to the fans. Hmm, now that I think about it. . .

beFrank said...

Jill - Oh, and a Happy Birthday and Happy Cinco de Mayo to your mom.

~jolene said...

Hey Frank!
This is Jill's Mom. Yes, the Jill who constantly stalks you on your blog. Oh wait, stalk is not a good word..uh, Jill who adores your writing and photography on your blog!

Happy Cinco de Mayo birthday back at ya! I was 46, once, uh, eleven years ago...hmmph!

beFrank said...

~jolene - Mucho gracias.

Yeah, 46 is working out pretty well for me so far. I think I'll stick with it for a couple of years. :)