#ProTip: Don't shit where you eat, and always remember to keep earrings & lipstick in your purse in case you're invited to a gala at the last minute.
WARNING: There is a video halfway down that is from a 60s topless dance party (this makes sense as you read the post). Thumbnail is NSFW!!
I've spent the last 2.5 years living on a 4,000 population island. I would laugh to my island friends saying "I can't believe I ever thought Los Angeles is a small town ..."
After this weekend, I'm changing my tune (again).
On Friday, I ran to a coffee shop by my house to grab an ice tea, and got stopped by a familiar face.
JEN FRIEL, she shouted as we hugged.
Woah, I said. Good to see you!
It was an old actress friend of mine whom knew (from Talk Nerdy) all about Romeo and she in fact happened to be Facebook friends with one of Romeo's friends who has since done extremely well for himself in TV. You might not know his name, but you definitely know his face.
<tangent> If you all remember the story of Romeo he was my first love. I wrote about it on Talk Nerdy, then he cast me in this commercial he was doing (and I had to also tell him that I faked an engagement to him for page views), then years later he texted me from the bar that was a stones throw from my house (he had no idea), THENNNNN I had to finally say goodbye and ask him to not contact me again. (Totes normies.) He was my dude for a really long time, but the relationship stopped being healthy and I couldn't do it anymore. I loved him, but respected myself more.
UGH!!! I still remember sobbing so hard I lost a contact (which being so poor was actually a horrible thing) after I got his first Facebook message ...
We caught up for a minute, and she asked if I knew that Romeo got married?
No shit, I said with a smile. Good for him!!
I saw it on Facebook, she said. B was in the wedding party. Do you really mean that? she bluntly pried.
Are you kidding? ABSOLUTELY!! I laughed, I don't have that "chip." I don't know how to explain it, (I continued), but to love someone doesn't mean you have to hold onto them forever or be sad it didn't work out - the opposite. All I ever wanted was for him (or anyone I've dated) to be happy. Truly. Great dude, not my dude.
I don't think I can be that mature, she said laughing.
Is it maturity, I wondered? Feels like common sense to me.
I then walked back to my house and smiled. What a fucking journey that was, I thought. He was such a big part of my first year in LA and most of my twenties. I had friends ask when I came back if I was going to try and reach out to him, and I said absolutely absolutely absolutely not. He was a teacher, not a partner.
You start to see these things in this magical state called your thirties.
But don't you ever wonder? a few of them would comment.
That's what the block feature is for, I said laughing (yet very very serious).
I feel like there are two prominent aspects of self.
1) Is your inner 6 year old who had a plan, and knew where s/he was going and by what age.
2) The "you" you know you are.
I'm really fucking good at listening to option 2).
(Unlike the uh, other number two, that one is a learned behavior.)
There's a reason I'm not married right now and I'm not going to force something that in my gut isn't going to work just to appease my six year old self.
I then went home and got ready for a holiday party with a guy I met on Twitter.
<tangent> We met IRL for the first time a month or so back. We've chatted for so many years it didn't even occur to me that we hadn't met IRL until I was literally stepping into his car (whom happened to arrive at the airport the second I stepped outside).
B turned saying, I can't believe we haven't met before.
I was LITERALLY just thinking that, I said laughing.
He's an entrepreneur so I asked him about his projects while we picked each others brain's over Chipolte. I liked his style. I think ideas are great, but I 100% believe in the person first. Maybe not how many companies you may or may not have exited, but the passion and that tenacity behind what makes you "you." I'm rabid for it, and I can sniff it out.
He definitely had it.
I grabbed a LYFT to head over to his place before picking up his friends and heading over to the party (all on the west side, which in LA terms might as well be Alaska).
Hi, he said opening the door, I got us Whole Foods not Chipolte.
Thanks, I said laughing (I like boys that bring/have food).
We sat and chatted while we ate. I told him more about projects I am involved in (I have my hand in a lot of pots). He then showed me his deck for his startup (which had pivoted since the last time we chatted).
Good for you, I said looking at the deck.
Does it make sense? Be honest.
I am honest. I am always honest. I'm just genuinely shocked this doesn't exist in the market place.
I know?! he said.
I feel like the best ideas aren't all that "innovative" or my favorite buzz word "disruptive" - it's the moment where you think, hmmm this is almost so easy someone had to think of it.
We then met up with a group of people and went to the holiday party.
This is fun, he said, but I'd rather go "dive bar adventuring" with you.
Sure, I said. Am game (love me a good dive).
En route to the bar B reached down and started freaking out. SHIT! he said. I can't find my wallet.
He then called his roommate, and she couldn't find it either.
Do you mind if we head back? I need to find it.
Of course, I said.
He then rummaged through his place frustrated that he couldn't find it. He cancelled his cards, and I could tell he was still super flustered as he got back into the LYFT.
It's really okay, I said laughing. I was planning on paying for drinks, but I know how much it sucks being in that situation.
He then vocalized the logistics of getting his ID back, etc.
You figure things out, I said. After the initial shock, you have to remain logical and you'll figure it out. We always do!
Yeah, he said finally laughing. Watch, when I get back home and am calm I'm sure I'll find it.
Am sure you will too.
We then went to one of his favorite bars which featured a drink called the "last resort" which is $4 for a PBR and a well shot of your choice.
I know the bartender, he said so I'll get in without an ID.
We pull up and the bouncer asks B for his ID, and he says he doesn't have it.
Don't worry, I say, I'm old and he truly does know the bartender.
B then stuck his shoulder inside to talk to the bartender whom confirmed that they knew each other.
He's good man, said the bartender.
I smiled walking inside, always good to know people.
He then ordered drinks and paid with cash.
I laughed as I said you gotta let that shit go man, this concept of who you need to be. Everything really is okay. I had my phone and wallet stolen less than 24 hours before a destination date to Miami and had to navigate without any money, and wifi on my iPad. (Fortunately my actual ID was in my purse and safe from the theft.) You always figure it out! (Sensing a theme yet?)
Don't mind the 60s porn on in the background, he said as I almost spit out my wine.
I look up at the screen and can't stop laughing ...
MY SEDUCTION TECHNIQUE IS FROM THE WRONG DECADE!! I shouted super freaking excited.
My boyfriends have always made fun of me "when I try to be sexy." Yes, I have zero problem going into Boss Bitch domme mode, but I'm also really fucking corny, and say things like "does this make you horny baby (at really inappropriate times, like when you're about to go down on a guy)?!?"
I call it my "white girl wiggle." It's exactly like the dancing above and similar to those zestfully clean commercials we all saw as a kid.
You wiggle while you have this towel around you (only you don't, you just move your arms in said fashion) ...
Well that's my go to dancing move at parties. I stick my hands out and kind of move my bum to the beat.
I explained how excited I was to B ...
I don't think you understand what an epiphany this is for me. I clued him in on what I was talking about and he laughed.
We hung out until sometime way past my bedtime, and upon leaving I asked what he was doing tomorrow and if he liked Seinfeld?
(Stupid question, I know. Who doesn't love Seinfeld.)
Yeah, he said why?
I am going with my girlfriend M to see the Seinfeld apartment in the morning. Want to come?
Sure, he said.
I then grabbed a LYFT back home and M texted me before bedtime.
I set my alarm shortly there after and woke up the next morning hating my life.
WHYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY alarm WHYYYYYYYYYYYYY
<tangent> The Seinfeld apartment was an experiential marketing campaign brought to you by Hulu (who is currently streaming all Seinfeld episodes). They created this "mock" Seinfeld apartment on Melrose with tremendous, tremendous demand. The first few days had over a two hour wait, as we found out on Saturday the wait grew up to five hours.
I am OBSESSED with this type of marketing btw. It’s creating a conversation around a brand and utilizing social platforms that people are ALREADY USING!!! </tangent>
I went with my buddy M and B (from the night before). Would you like a breakfast sandwich, he texted.
FOOD!! Yes, I texted.
I found my wallet, he texted back. It was in the jeans I was going to initially wear.
HA! great! I texted.
We then met up with M whom was in a MASSIVELY long line.
.15 miles to be exact ...
M completely cracks me up, btw. Not only is she like stunningly, stunningly beautiful - but she is also goofy and a total roll dog.
Roll dog: n - a dope ass chick that has your back at all times and won’t steal your boyfriend.
See also: JLAW
She has this effortless charisma about her. I feel like she should have an announcer every time she walks into a room, M, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN!! ::cue trumpet and horns::
She is engaged to the founder of a startup I am working for (more on that later).
Despite the long, still hungover wait, it was totally worth it.
We had SO MUCH FUN!!!
I was super impressed with the amount of memorabilia, and attention to detail. They also had WONDERFUL staff who were not only enthusiastic but kept shit on lock!! That was a LOT of people to move through a very short period of time (we never felt rushed-everyone was super respectful).
On a scale of 1-10 it was 100.
I pulled their stats and the numbers were incredible - even days later!! (Mind you this is only Instagram, and pulled from 12/21- 12/23:)
Click below to scroll through the pictures
After that, I went home to pass out only to wake up a handful of minutes later for a Skype call that I had with a girl I went to high school with and her fiancee.
She reached out via Facebook asking for some connections in LA re: her beau’s slate of flicks. He’s a screenwriter, producer and (as I found out) really fucking well connected.
Specifically press, she asked. Do you know anyone?
I know lots of people I said, but I don’t just source my friends. I have to meet first and trust my spidey senses. I don’t name names, and I don’t pitch my friends if it’s not something that is mutually beneficial. I’m SUPER stubborn about this. Like it or leave it.
We had a great, great call, and as I found out not only do both of the big projects he is working on align with people that coincidentally I have meetings with in the coming weeks, but he's the right amount of quirk for a dear friend of mine whom happens to be a journalist.
It makes me happy getting to help people, truly. I love being a connector and watching my friends succeed.
I then passed out again and sometime after it started raining, my alarm went off for my next meeting; this time dinner at the Montage hotel in Beverly Hills.
Cue Weezer Beverly Hills …
Beverly. Hills. That’s where I wanted to be until I looked outside and saw that it was raining and absolutely freezing.
BED IS SO WARM!! BUSTER (dog) IS SO WONDERFUL.
"Work, get your ass up," said my big girl pants.
I then put on a sort of slinky black dress (not my sexiest, just meh. Scale of 1-10 a solid 6 but appropriate for work) and Dolce Vita ankle booties while I waited for one of the other founders to pick me up.
We arrived at the dinner a bit late, but got right down to business.
What are you doing later said S? I have this event for my company and I’d like you to come and meet people. It’s technically black tie but your dress will do.
Score one for being randomly prepared, I thought.
<tangent> One thing that I’ve learned since being back in LA is how many of these “social circles” there are. It’s not the illuminati or any of that BS - it’s vetted "membership only" groups.
Yes, there are the ones that invite you to orgies (have an update on that as well), but they’re also the professional ones. Much like Summit Series in the sense that it’s all walks of life that are at the “top of their game.” They have mixers, and speakers - I love it. </tangent>
Fortunately, I keep earrings and lipstick (plus liner) in my purse for exact moments like this. The one thing I learned about couch surfing was the value of always having whatever I needed on me. I’ve honed it down quite a bit now, but had I not been 1) in a dress and 2) had those extra accessories, there’s no way I would have fit in.
Always. Always. Always be prepared. Luck is opportunity meeting preparation, truly.
She then walked me right through the front door (sans having to pay the hefty entry fee) and I was suddenly warped into this art gallery and world of some of the most attractive people I have ever seen in tuxedos and ball gowns.
Literally fucking ball gowns.
And to think I was going to go home and have the masturbatory version of netflix and chill (translation: solo netflix binge watching and passing out on the couch).
S is also a connector so in a matter of moments not only did I have a drink but I was introduced to some of the most attractive men I have ever seen.
Like Manservant level attractive, only these guys run their own businesses and can actually tell you about themselves.
I then asked one of the gentlemen about his business, and he said please don’t kill me.
Eh, I said wondering if I was intruding in some fashion.
You have lipstick all over your teeth.
Of course I do, I said laughing. "I genuinely appreciate you saying that" were the words that came out of my mouth as he turned and walked away. Well, now I need to die I thought as I bumped into a tech buddy of mine that I had just seen a few days back.
(Men do not understand what a commitment red lipstick is. Le sigh.)
Good to see you, I said with a hug.
JEN!! S shouted, I need to introduce you.
(I’m friends with very passionate people if you cannot sense the theme. I’m shockingly a lot quieter than people expect; they're the cool ones. I just happen to be a yes person and go with the flow.)
She literally whisked me away at that point as I was brought to the other side of the room.
I was then introduced to a girl named J whom I could tell we were immediately going to be besties. There was this intensity in her stare. It spoke volumes of her confidence, experiences, and she was also rocking a burberry poncho, skull flats, and pants.
We can be friends, I thought. She really doesn’t give a fuck.
We totally hit it off, and I met some of the most FANTASTIC people I have met since being back in LA. Super impressed. Super smart. So in love.
Sometime later, I retired to the restroom, and was greeted with a very very long line. (Art galleries aren’t known for needing copious restroom stalls.)
I began snooping around to see if I could find an employee restroom as I am grabbed by a stunning redhead.
YOU ARE SO PRETTY, she shouted obviously enjoying the adult beverages.
Thank you, I said confused and wondering if this was a Regina George moment.
You need to be with him, she said pointing at her insanely hot date.
WOOAAHH, I said picking up the fact that he definitely felt awkward.
Well, they aren’t swingers I thought. Not that I’d be mad at that … (I HAVEN’T HAD SEX IN SO LONG!!! DAMN YOU FAILED ORGY!!!)
Drunky mcgee ball gown then grabbed my number as she said she wanted to be best friends. You’re just so hot, she kept saying.
This is getting a little weird, I said awkwardly laughing to her date.
Two other girls then approached, and she commented on one of the girls’ beautiful bright lime green dress.
They were WAY more sober so I leaned on them trying to find a quiet place to talk.
What do you do, asked one of the girls?
Loaded question, I said with a pause. I'm not really sure what I'm doing.
See, with Talk Nerdy I was FIERCE about my elevator pitch, and would then and there pull up the site on their phone to get an extra unique.
People would reply, so it’s a blog, and without skipping a beat I would say “no, it’s a revolution.”
Genuine enthusiasm/ borderline insanity actually gets you pretty far in life. Who knew?!
I’ve kind of already done what I wanted to do, so now I'm still trying to figure out what's next. I’m for SURE going to be the fiercest brand ambassador for the CBS show, but what else do I say? Do I feel like talking about myself for the next hour? It’s all another lifetime ago to me, I want what’s next.
I defaulted to my elevator pitch, and the girls were absolutely shocked. We had a great, great conversation for about the next half hour, and somewhere between the event stopping the music and literally shutting off the lights I saw a familiar face.
SHUT UP, I said as he approached the group.
Remember the Mentalist? Well, this was/ is his best friend.
Hi, he says with an embrace. I was with him that night he found you on Bumble btw.
I started laughing as I introduced him to the group. This gentleman here is best friends with the guy that is responsible for the story I just told you all.
WHAT?! They said laughing.
I didn’t know that, said the best friend as he snapped a picture to send to the mentalist.
Yeah, I said, if he had listened to me in terms of social media (and not cheated obvi) I highly doubt I ever would have started the blog. I would have been too busy helping him with his career.
Congrats on everything, he said.
Thank you so much. I’m really glad you’re his best friend. From the little I discovered I know about him, it seems like he needed it.
Do you remember that night at Big Wangs we met?
EEHHHH, I said cringing remembering being 25 and thinking I could drink boys under the table via consuming shots.
I vaguely remember almost getting kicked out (we offered to leave … I think?!?), and then passing out on a bench outside the mentalist's apartment while someone stole my SUPER CUTE Michael Kors Mary Janes - off my feet.
WHO STEALS SHOES?!!? Lesson learned. God, your 20s suck man.
I then swapped instagrams and numbers with the bomb ass chicks I had met, and grabbed a LYFT to hang out with my actual friends at a quasi divey bar.
"Business Jen" off, I thought.
I met up with everybody, and one of the guys pulls me away from the group saying he wanted to introduce me to his best friend.
Hi, I say extending my hand.
JEN FRIEL!!! He says walking around the bar (he’s the bartender, among like everyone else, many other things).
My name is J!!!! We met on Myspace when I first came to LA.
Of course we did, I said laughing and actually remembering who he was.
(I’m an auditory learner if there is rhythm, otherwise it’s photographic memory FTW! I don’t remember names, but I will forever remember “handles” and avatars.)
We met through L. She’s a good friend of mine.
Yeah, and I know her through Mr. Doyle’s junior year math class. SO RANDOM!!!
I wanted to meet people also from West Hartford, CT (where we are from), but also you’re really hot.
I started laughing, as he offered to buy me a drink. I work here after all!
How can I say no? Thank you, I said with a smile.
Moments later my buddy wanted to introduce me to another friend whom I ALSO happened to have met randomly at this same bar about four years ago. My manager (at the time) was hitting on her, and I played wing girl. (Didn’t work, but we stayed friends on Facebook.)
I LOVE YOUR WRITING, she said.
Thanks so very much for reading, I said.
It’s just so real. Your articles crack me up. No one’s life is perfect, and we all do crazy shit. Good for you for putting it out there.
Oh it’s out there, I said thinking of my poor parents whom daily cringe at the stories they are subjected to.
I claim it's payback for the time that they dropped me as a child. True story.
She’s such a beautiful person (inside and out), I thought sipping my wine as I listened to her adventures in traveling (she’s from Greece). She then went to the restroom and I finally got to sit with the buddy I actually came to see and I laughed at how small of a world it is.
Don’t shit where you eat, I said drinking my wine. If there’s one thing I know to be true it’s keep your head down, work hard, be prepared, and let the “luck” fall into place. You not only can’t make this up - you can’t even predict it. The truth TRULY is stranger than fiction and this “best off???” I never could have imagined.
Here’s to hoping the holidays are quieter, I said.
Who am I kidding, have you seen my family??