Tag Archives: superman

RIP, Margot Kidder

Sad news in the world of entertainment as it was reported today that Margot Kidder, the best Lois Lane there was, died yesterday.   She and Christopher Reeve (along with Gene Hackman), made the first Superman movie everything it was, and it was imprinted on my mind from the first viewing.  Her moment getting saved by Superman after she plummets from the crashed helicopter towards the ground and then Superman catches her?

Everything about this scene is magical, and I still get such euphoria when the main Superman theme kicks in as he then catches the helicopter.  I mean, just…amazing.

Margot Kidder played that role so well though and in both this and Superman 2, she knocks it out of the park.

I talked about my own experience “meeting” her while working at Bookstar back in the 90s a few years back:

My Margot Kidder Moment

It’s very sad how much she suffered, but she did fight back, dammit.   I’ll miss her but she is eternal now having been immortalized in one of the greatest movies of all time.   Thank you for everything, Margot Kidder.

Back From the City

It had been about 14 months since I had lost gone to New York City, but that dry spell has ended after this week!  I went back there for some additional training for my job and I have to say I definitely enjoy getting trained in NYC rather than in the Atlanta airport vicinity.   But that’s just me.   I’m very appreciative of this week’s training as I got an increased visibility into just what it is I can expect to be doing and I got to learn some valuable skills that I want to keep perfecting, especially in the Spotfire and Tableau realms.  I also met some great people who were also going through this session – networking, networking, networking!  The also fantastic part of this week was that Larry was also back in NYC with me, but he was here for his own job.  There’s also some hopeful news coming from there and which I hope to report on very soon.  Fingers crossed.

The time spent there certainly wasn’t a vacation although there was time in the evening to at least get out a little.  Walking around New York during the morning and evening rush hours was invigorating, and I got to recognize that even though I thought I was a fast-walker, Los Angeles speeds don’t compare at all to the NYC walking pace.  I was once one of their number, but you do chill a bit back here on the west coast.

Anyway, I took some pictures, of course, while back.  I revisited the United Nations (exterior, at least), finally got in and saw the Daily Planet globe, braved Grand Central Terminal, and of course the views of the PwC building in Midtown Manhattan.  So there’s pictures of those things, but not much more as it was damn cold while we were there.  Well, Larry is still there until tomorrow night, and apparently it snowed today.  I’m happy to be enjoying the 70-80 degree temps here.

Monday, March 16, 2015 – First Day back

16-Mar-2015 18:01, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 50
16-Mar-2015 18:01, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 64
16-Mar-2015 18:02, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 50
 
16-Mar-2015 18:02, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 50
16-Mar-2015 18:02, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 320
A few of my favorite places
A few of my favorite places16-Mar-2015 18:02, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 50
 
16-Mar-2015 18:03, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 40
16-Mar-2015 18:03, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 125
16-Mar-2015 18:03, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 160
 
Los Angeles!
Los Angeles!16-Mar-2015 18:04, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.042 sec, ISO 250
My hotel for the week on the east side of 42nd St
My hotel for the week on the east side of 42nd St16-Mar-2015 18:06, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 32
The lit-up Chrysler Building just down the street
The lit-up Chrysler Building just down the street16-Mar-2015 19:50, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 320
 
16-Mar-2015 19:50, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 400
It's such a fantastic skyline component
It's such a fantastic skyline component16-Mar-2015 19:53, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 640
16-Mar-2015 20:06, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.067 sec, ISO 400
 

Oh Blue Smoke, how I missed thee.

Tuesday, March 17

Monday’s training was in one of the basement conference rooms, but Tuesday’s was on the 7th floor and hence we were afforded a bit of a view!  After training, I went to visit the exterior of the United Nations, as now that I’d built it in LEGO, I felt like I knew it.  I really loved taking a tour of the UN shortly before leaving NYC in 2010 – highly recommend it to anyone!  For dinner, I was on my own so I wandered to Grand Central’s restaurant concourse in the lower level and treated myself to Shake Shack.  Honestly, it wasn’t as good as I had remembered – maybe I’m truly an In-N-Out man?

17-Mar-2015 08:54, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 50
St Patty's day was slightly rainy in the morning
St Patty's day was slightly rainy in the morning17-Mar-2015 08:54, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.033 sec, ISO 64
As you'll see, plenty of people took today off to drink regardless of rain or time of day
As you'll see, plenty of people took today off to drink regardless of rain or time of day17-Mar-2015 11:02, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 32
 
Yep - loud too
Yep - loud too17-Mar-2015 11:02, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 50
Lots and lots of celebration
Lots and lots of celebration17-Mar-2015 11:03, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.008 sec, ISO 32
17-Mar-2015 11:12, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 
The pwc logo awaits thee!
The pwc logo awaits thee!17-Mar-2015 15:11, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 32
17-Mar-2015 16:53, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
Grand Central feels like a special place and time within Midtown
Grand Central feels like a special place and time within Midtown17-Mar-2015 16:54, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 32
 
17-Mar-2015 16:54, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 32
The UN!
The UN!17-Mar-2015 17:52, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
17-Mar-2015 17:52, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 
Bridges in the distance!
Bridges in the distance!17-Mar-2015 17:52, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
17-Mar-2015 17:52, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
17-Mar-2015 17:53, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 

Wednesday, March 18

Back in the basement that day, but I did want to see what the PwC building actually looked like from the outside.  It’s kind of the midst of everything in Midtown so you really can’t see it and then all of a sudden, you’re there and walking into the very spacious white lobby.  It’s a very nice building – and then Osman took me to lunch in the cafeteria and I got very jealous because the LA office does NOT have such luxuries!  🙂

18-Mar-2015 08:47, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
18-Mar-2015 08:47, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.005 sec, ISO 32
18-Mar-2015 08:47, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.005 sec, ISO 32
 

Thursday, March 19

And finally, the last day of training.  This day, we were on the 21st (!!!) floor and the view was stunning from the conference room’s windows.  Stunning.  You got a singular view of the Chrysler Building and a nice overhead view of Grand Central.  You could also see the thin sliver of what will be the tallest residential tower in the Western Hemisphere as it keeps building higher, 432 Park.  We could see the construction elevators going up and down and you could NOT pay me to go on that.  Nope, not at all going to happen.

My flight was leaving that evening after the training as that was what we had been told to schedule, but damn, if there is a next time doing this, I will have to rethink it all.  You see, trying to leave Manhattan towards JFK at 4pm, which is early-ish, is a horrible idea.  Normally, the ride can take about an hour or so, even with traffic.  But this ride?  It took me just under 2 hours.  Luckily, I had made the command decision to cut out a touch early as my flight was at 6:45pm and I realized, I can’t leave at 4:30pm and hope to make my flight.  Sure enough, that 2-hour cab ride meant I got there with just less than an hour to get checked in and to the gate.  I ended up arriving at the gate and being nearly the last to check in.  That’s cutting it close.  I made the flight though (one of the new American Airlines jets with some tricked-out business and first class sections and Hobie wants that now, please), decided to watch Moneyball as I hadn’t seen it (I know!) on the entertainment system and now I’m back.

Flying a lot is exhausting.  But I actually will have a Sunday this weekend and I am fucking thrilled.  Larry will be back by then and I won’t be flying out and all will be nice in the world.

Grand Central from our 21st floor perch
Grand Central from our 21st floor perch19-Mar-2015 08:55, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.006 sec, ISO 32
The Chrysler Building was right there!
The Chrysler Building was right there!19-Mar-2015 10:09, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
MetLife (former Pan Am) building too
MetLife (former Pan Am) building too19-Mar-2015 10:09, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 
432 Park in the distance - it may look not that imposing from this angle, but it's realllly far away
432 Park in the distance - it may look not that imposing from this angle, but it's realllly far away19-Mar-2015 10:09, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 32
19-Mar-2015 10:09, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 32
19-Mar-2015 10:09, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 32
 
19-Mar-2015 12:22, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 32
19-Mar-2015 12:22, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
Thanks, Google Auto-Awesome
Thanks, Google Auto-Awesome19-Mar-2015 12:22, Apple iPhone 6, 4.15mm
 
19-Mar-2015 12:24, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
19-Mar-2015 12:24, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.003 sec, ISO 32
19-Mar-2015 12:49, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 32
 
19-Mar-2015 12:49, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
19-Mar-2015 12:50, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.002 sec, ISO 32
19-Mar-2015 12:52, Apple iPhone 6, 2.2, 4.15mm, 0.001 sec, ISO 32
 

A Long Way Here

There have been some lessons learned in this recent trip to NYC – first and foremost, enough with the 1-stop itineraries.  You’re going to get screwed.  How do I know this? Because my Burbank-Phoenix-JFK itinerary got blown to hell when after arriving in Phoenix, I received a text from AMEX Travel that said my flight to JFK was flat-out cancelled. UGH.  After about an hour on the phone with the amazingly helpful PwC AMEX Travel team, I was re-booked, this time now to fly to Dallas first, then to LaGuardia.  Even through many delays for the flight leaving Dallas because ATC was keeping air traffic out of NYC due to wind (it seems), I finally got here.  14 hours later.  Ridiculous. Amazingly, my bag actually made it too.  I figured it was gone for good.

But I’m here, I made it to my first day of training, and I got to see Superman‘s Daily Planet lobby on my way to work.  I then took pictures of it on my way back to the hotel.  That’s swell…

My Margot Kidder Moment

I was wasting time on the Internet today as can occasionally happen and there was an article on the A.V. Club defending the 2006 movie, Superman Returns, which is a worthy read in itself, but in the comments section, someone linked to a 2009 A.V. Club article/interview with Margot Kidder about her many movie roles.  It’s a fantastic read and really lets you appreciate just how ballsy Ms. Kidder is and how little she gives a shit about dishing the details on her experiences.  She’ll happily own up to all the shitty movies she’s been in and is a harsh and hilarious judge of her own acting capabilities.   Beyond just wanting to share these fun reads to the world, I also have to say that I have a very non-involved role in Margot Kidder’s crazy bipolar experience of 1996 when she entered the tabloid news after having been found stumbling around all rough and haggard in someone’s Glendale backyard.

An A.V. Club commenter (Anonimoose)  helpfully posted this summation of her experience in 1996, and I’m posting it here because it gives perspective:

She had a manic episode, spending 10-12 hours a day typing on her memoirs (then titled Calamities). She suffered a data loss, had her hopes raised by thinking something could be salvaged, then dashed when it was deemed impossible – she lost 3 years of work.

This coincided with a severe crash into depression and manifested itself as a paranoia: her data loss was part of an effort by her ex-husband, Thomas McGaune, and the CIA to kill her. She freaked out in an airport, threw away her purse (rendering her penniless). She tried to use her ATM card outside the airport but thought the cash machine was about to explode. “I took off running,” Kidder recalls. “I slept in yards and on porches in a state of fear.” By the afternoon of the 21st, Kidder had made her way downtown, a distance of some 20 miles, and was taken in by Charlie and another (homeless) man.

Kidder set off on foot to see her friend Shuster, a former Saturday Night Live writer who has a home in La Crescenta, some 12 miles north of downtown L.A. Margot had hacked off her hair close to her scalp as a further disguise.

The next day, says Kidder, “I was walking up this endless mountain and had the wondrous realization that though I was stripped of all traditional forms of identity, I was still me.” That moment of relative clarity finally led to her rescue. Feeling less driven to hide, the actress took refuge in a backyard in Glendale, where she encountered homeowner Elaine Lamb and told her, “I may not look like it, but I’m Margot Kidder.”

Where I come in:  I was working at Bookstar in the Beverly Connection, a mall in West Los Angeles across the street from the Beverly Center.  It was a fairly popular bookstore in the area and we got many frequent celebrity sightings in the store.  One weeknight while manning the front counter, I hear a strangely familiar voice at the small end of the counter and look over.  I nearly die.  It’s freakin’ Lois Lane.  As a ginormous fan of the Superman movies, seeing Margot Kidder in person was like having the imaginary become real.  She had her long hair and she talked with that raspy smoker’s voice.   I possibly squealed, but I’m fairly certain I didn’t and managed to keep it together.  She ended up talking with another clerk who was there, telling him that she needed books on how to restore data on hard drives and anything on how to remove computer viruses.  We only had a few books on that topic and really, books aren’t that much help when what you need is a software or hardware based solution.  We got her the books that we did have and she ended up staying at the counter for a while scanning the contents.  She chatted with the clerk a bit and revealed that she knew she was being monitored and that what was happening was some kind of attack.  Further, the books we had just didn’t have the details she needed to help with her situation.

I remember listening for a bit out at the counter and then going into the back office so I could listen at the door without being completely obvious I was gawking.  I couldn’t get over that one of the stars of possibly my favorite movie as a kid was right THERE! I figured she was a bit eccentric with her story about the reason for her data issues but when a few days later the story broke that she had pretty much lost her mind, it was very strange to ponder that her moment at Bookstar could have been her last lucid one for a while.

This rambling is all to say that I still love Margot Kidder’s Lois Lane the best and after reading that Random Roles interview in the A.V. Club, I love her even more.