Do you know who Josh Brolin is? Because I do. But apparently I was the only one in a recent crowd who knew who he was. Amateur celeb stalkers, sheesh!
F and I went out for my birthday dinner 2 days before my actual birthday. One advantage of spending my birthday in Santa Barbara is that it falls within a day or two of the Santa Barbara International Film Festival’s opening weekend. Each year the Film Festival honors outstanding performers, showcases new and interesting films, and brings in celebrities…my favorite part!
It was an unexpected star-studded night for us beginning with dinner at the delicious Ca’Dario. Seated next to us were some power players including the Chairman/CEO of Google. Perhaps not the celebrity I was hoping for, but kind of fun to say I sat next to him for 2 hours and eavesdropped on his conversation. He seems quite well-travelled…enjoys Barcelona and Venice, but you didn’t hear that from me!
Post-dinner, F and I didn’t have any plans before heading back home to the munchkins, so I requested that we walk the 2 blocks over to the Arlington Theater and try to catch a glimpse of Penelope Cruz as she arrived for her award celebration. Since it was “my day,” F agreed. We found a nice spot right against the barricade just in time to see Josh Brolin signing autographs.
“Who’s Josh Brolin?” I kept hearing people ask.
HELLO?!?!?! Josh Brolin — Portrayed George W. Bush in the recent film W, was in last year’s award-winning No Country for Old Men, just got nominated for his role in this year’s Milk, married to Diane Lane, was in Thrashin’ AND played the older brother in The Goonies. Come on, people!
After having a few minutes to recover from the Josh Brolin sighting, we then saw Rodrigo Santoro. I admit I didn’t know who he was until some Brazilian youths next to me told me. He’s a Brazilian actor who was in one season of Lost and in the movie 300. Later I realized he also played the sexy Karl in one of my favorite movies Love Actually.
About 5 minutes later, a black Suburban pulled up in front of the theater and out climbed Penelope Cruz. Wearing a short, black dress, black tights, and what looked like 6-inch black heels, Penelope Cruz walked around and politely signed autographs. When she came toward me, I wanted to break the ice and say “Hey, Penelope. My 8-month-old is Penelope. She goes by P.Lo, P-Nizzle and P-Nizz. Sometimes even Meatloaf. How about you?” I didn’t get a chance to initiate what could have been an interesting conversation. That’s probably for the best.
While Penelope Cruz was taking pictures for People magazine and doing interviews with Extra, Efren Ramirez came by and shook our hands. Who, you ask? Pedro from Napoleon Dynamite. Vote for Pedro!
After 18 months of living in Santa Barbara — the American Riviera where folks such as Oprah, Rob Lowe, and Michael Douglas have homes — I FINALLY saw some celebrities. For some reason, I’ve always been star-struck, so you can imagine how excited I was to have spotted these stars. A good friend summed up this aspect of my personality by saying, “You can take the girl out of the mid-west but you definitely can’t take the mid-west out of the girl.”
Happy Birthday to Me!