The Busiest Girl In The World


No, right now I am not the busiest girl in the world.

In fact, for the past 12+ hours I’ve been sitting in a room full of walkie talkies. But honestly I’m pretty happy to be here.

Since last week I’ve been incredibly excited about my new internship at Red Carpet Tips. I think it’s incredibly funny that my first job reporting is also a writing job. Finally I feel like my two college educations melded together and found me a job.

As I mentioned before though, this is an internship. Which means what you think it means, no money. Which in all honesty doesn’t bother me until I realize I can’t afford to live. Then it’s a slight problem.

Side note: this is when I would be happy to discuss how I feel about communism. But that’s another story.
Anyway, so I’ve magically extended my $$ in three ways since I got my position.

1-the best thing that I ever EVER came across, Foodbuzz’s 24×24 program where they PAY me to throw a party and write about it. Sometimes I don’t believe it’s real, then get excited when my bank account revives.

2-I’m getting all my money back from the government! I’ve never felt so good about being poor. Also, thank you dad for turbo-taxing my many w-2’s from multiple states.

3-and 3, where I’m sitting right now in the basement of the Orpheum theater in downtown LA working the LA auditions for So You Think You Can Dance. And I’m already making overtime. Yes I’m sitting here as walkie talkie security for the next three days, but guess what else I’m going? Earning May’s rent!

Happy me. Plus since that little baby toe is still twisted and blue, sitting for three days might be a good thing.


Horseshoes and Handgrenades


It’s too bad getting close to something doesn’t count that often. I mean, sure in a competition second place sometimes goes home with a small trophy or a consolation prize – such as a lifetime supply of razors (Modern Family), but even sometimes those run out.

But you know what second place doesn’t get? The job. Wah wah. Ok, that and my office candy supply raid are my consolation prizes for being told, “it was between you and one other person – he had more experience than you do.”

So I will move on. I’m still super, super lucky to be working at American Idol again, and now that can last a little longer – basically til they kick me out or I find something new. It’s better pay and very nice people here – plus they have pretzel m&m’s. And, Brian, made a really good point when I said that I was bummed but really still grateful because most people don’t encounter this many opportunities so fast, he said – “and look where you’re working.” Exactly. I may not be hosting the show, someday Ryan Seacrest – you better watch out, but I’m still working for quite possibly the number one show on TV.

Tomorrow is another day. I’ll take the bummed out candy raid over this time last year when my Friday afternoon consisted of preparing for a 30+ hour work weekend.

Wishing, hoping and re-gifting

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I currently spend about 10-12 hours on my computer everyday, and yet I haven’t been posting so much. I blame it on my inner worry of getting in trouble – even though the travel coordinator I’m assisting told me I can play on facebook when I have nothing to do. Since I have a bit before I need to get ready to leave, let’s catch up.

You know that I am going to my 6 am bootcamp class – waking up at 5:30 is difficult, but I still like the class, it beats having to figure out how I want to workout for the day, it’s over at 7am, and I’m hoping it’ll do more for me than just running. Let’s be serious, than just running 1 mile and walking the rest while on the phone with my mom.

I’ve also been working again at American Idol as a travel PA, which is almost a too-good-to-be-true deal. I work from 10am-7pm (ish), on a $125/day rate, which is usually for a 12 hour day, there’s food, coffee, water, diet coke and the occasional birthday cake and jar of candy at my disposal. I bring my own computer, and either I’m so busy that the day flies by, or I get paid to order my contacts and play words with friends. Win-win-win situation going on. Plus, this was completely out of the blue. The travel guy – Brian – happened to call me the second day I was back asking if I was free to help. I’m still waiting to hear about the job I flew back to interview for, but so far so good, I’m still in the running. I’m hoping to find out about that this week and hoping, hoping, hoping that I get it because it’s job security for a year!

That’s pretty much what’s going on right now. I need to buy new shoes and get a car wash, but I mean whenever that happens it happens.

My leftover story today is about birthdays. Brian’s birthday was Tuesday and I gave him an adorable little square balloon on a stick and a “birthday story” about my mom running into the secretary from our elementary school who was excited to hear a “Collins story.” I explained to him and the office that I’m poor so my birthday presents are inventive this year. For example, my sister’s birthday was in October and I re-gifted her a brand-new wallet that I wasn’t really ever going to use that happened to be similar to something she was looking for. My brother Tommy is getting a pretty creative present this weekend, that cost me nothing, but Michael’s gift was by far my favorite. Remember when I was spending my days doing audience work? Well, one day on the set of The Doctors, in addition to getting my $20, we got the audience gift – the male version of the shake weight. Despite my love for exercise, I wasn’t planning on using it. But, I knew the perfect person who had a birthday coming up and a goal of shedding some lbs before a vacation in April. Boom – Michael’s birthday present. But the best part is I also gave him the bag of fried onion strips from my airplane salad – to teach him portion control, and half a bottle of energy vitamins that gave me a headache.

So until I become famous don’t expect to be rolling in expensive birthday presents – but you never know when I might re-gift you something awesome.

Let’s Keep This Up, Literally and Figuratively


I just don’t think I’d ever been this happy on January 5th.

According to studies, yesterday, 1/4, it actually the most depressing day of the year. I forget the exact reasoning but it has something to do with the end of the holiday season, putting away decorations and realizing your fat. And the cold, gloominess that most of the world (or at least the US, since I think this may have been a national study) experiences.

Not me! Yesterday was actually pretty fantastic. I started bootcamp, which I’m severely sore from already, but obviously that was going to happen and that means I’m getting my monies worth and getting a good workout which is the whole reason I’m going.

Then I had a great interview for a YEAR-LONG job, that starts at the end of the month, so we are keeping my fingers crossed for that.

But then – boom – I got a phone call about a month-long job working at the American Idol and So You Think You Can Dance office for the travel coordinator, which started today. I think I’ve already made more money this month than the entire month of November. Huge Michelle-style smiles about that.

So I started the job, loved it, loved actually having tasks to do and being good at them. Liked working with people who I met during Hollywood week and you know, not spending the day sitting on my bed talking to my computer. I mean I’m doing that right now, but that’s totally fine when it’s just an hour instead of 12.

BEST PART – it’s 10am-7pm, Monday-Friday. Amazing since my mom and my Chrissy are already booked to come visit the weekend of the 21/22! I mean, let’s be honest my mom is really coming just to see Wicked, but I’m sure Chrissy wants to see my apartment and be a tourist for a day, which I love.

Long story short, happy Michelle, me, is NERVOUS that the ball is gonna drop soon. It has been a really really really really, did I say really yet? Really long time since things have gone well like this for me. Probably not since I started broadcasting school and was told by one of my co-workers that I flipped my happy switch on. I think that was the same week my manager told me he liked bitchy Michelle better than chipper Michelle.

The only slight negative is waking up at 5:30am to go to the classes, but I do prefer morning workouts, just not early bedtime. Bootcamp is an awesome accompaniment to an office job. Being super sore is totally acceptable when you’re just gonna sit and reconfigure spreadsheets, which I nerd-ily kinda love.

This flurry of gleefulness gives me my leftover story for the day – Why I liked the movie New Year’s Eve.

No, I don’t think it was a great movie by any means. It wasn’t that classy and it wasn’t that funny. But, there are so many story lines going on at once that the movie is very entertaining. You are intrigued by each character enough to wonder what happens next and suddenly the movie is over and even though you don’t mind if you ever see it again, you will be put in a really happy and optimistic mood.

I saw it a few days before actual New Year’s Eve and it made me believe that positive things could happen in the new year… it’s kinda working for me. Just hoping that figurative ball doesn’t drop like the one in Times Square.

I apologize for that nerdy pun. It was too oozing with cliché to resist.



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Whoa in the very best way.

I was actually 100% too busy to sit at my computer last week, which was phenomenal. I know my computer is my best friend, but guess what? I didn’t even miss it. Thank God I still know how to interact with real people. (That’s a joke by the way, not a very good one though).

Anyway, it was an awesome week. I worked on the set of American Idol for 5 days of the crazy Hollywood Week. I basically baby-sat the contestants in the holding room for four days, which was awesome and terrible at the same time. Each morning I was in charge of making sure they were quiet so that the cameras doing interviews around the room wouldn’t pick up the noise. That was the terrible part. One on hand I felt bad for all of the contestants, they were full of nerves and excitement. I mean this is their DREAM, and they were in a room with so many other people feeling the same way and I had to walk around carrying a “quiet” sign shushing them. On the other hand, they aren’t 7 years old. After one time of being told not to talk you’d think they would realize I was just going to continue to tell them. Plus they had no idea they were dealing with Super Ears Michelle. I could hear a whisper in a gym full of people and pick out the culprit. Even the guardian parents wouldn’t shut up.

Plus sleep deprived Michelle turns to Mean Michelle, she came out on the last day. I went up to one of the guys, sat next to him and said, “Listen, by now you know you have a deep voice. And it carries.” Then I got up and walked away. He apologized later.

That was the terrible part, the amazing part was everything else. How lucky was I to be in the same room with all of these kids (some actual kids, some probably older than me) that were on their way to living out their dream, which is a sense was why I was there too. Granted, being a PA on American Idol is not even close to my dream, it is way closer than I was 5 months ago, so that gives me hope that 5 months from now I can say the same thing. They were all so excited and ready to take on the world, plus amazingly talented. How many times is it your job to sit in a room where 60 amazing singers were crowded around a piano singing “Lean on Me.” And, I was in the room with whomever the winner will be, totally cool. It made me pretty excited to watch the season now that I met these guys, and also since I’m an editor nerd at heart I can’t wait to see how the editors create the stories from the days of footage.

Let’s be honest though, the best part is that when I get back from my Christmas stay here in IL there’s going to be a real paycheck in my mailbox. One that will cover my rent and most of my car payment for January, which was very necessary timing.

I also have an interview for an awesome position on January 4th and I’m hoping that I may be asked to come back to Idol when the show resumes next year.

And Steven Tyler smiled at me.

More to come from home the next two weeks – Ahh Christmas. yay!

I’m pretty sure it’s Thursday, which means I’ve been here for a WHOLE week. whoa.

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In case you’re wondering, “what’s going on with Michelle all the way over there by the Pacific ocean?” well then you’ve come to the right place.

Exactly this minute I’m watching the TODAY show (on one of the small selection of channels we get with our amazing $11 antenna), there’s a really cool commercial on for new Rock Elmo toys, I kinda want to buy them for one of my little kiddos so I can play with it, maybe it’ll be on sale for Christmas. I’m also contemplating why I am so exhausted.
Anyways, more interestingly, I spent two days working on Fear Factor, which was an amazing opportunity to see what goes on in the adventure/reality tv realm, it’s obviously not where I want to be for career advancement, but definitely two days well spent. And, you know, I got paid, that was super unexpected so quickly. I’m done with that now, but if they called again, I probably should return.

I also went to a game show contestant audition yesterday afternoon which was pretty much a group interview with 3 Michelle’s and 2 Christina’s, which was so strange. I’d love to be casted for some fun and potential prizes, though I’m hoping for a nerdy trivia game or something like the Price Is Right as opposed to some extreme gross and physical thing, wish me luck!

Other than that, I’m impatiently waiting for my furniture to arrive because, well, Linda and I are tired of sleeping together in such a disorganized room!

I’m still trying to delineate a plan for getting a job (albeit a super crappy and bottom of the totem pole job, which I’m fine with) related to my career hopes, so today I’m researching that, cleaning up as if my truck is coming soon, and maybe doing laundry.

Here’s my LA thought for the day:

It’s funny to be here from the midwest because about 67% of the cars here have tinted windows, but when I”m running or walking in downtown Culver City near Sony studios, I try to start in every window to see if there’s famous person in the car. Literally yesterday I paused near a gas station because a tinted window person had their door cracked. It was not  a famous person. In fact it was a pajama clad thirty year old regular woman, :(. Come on famous people, I wanna see your face!

On that note, don’t forget if you meet a TV producer, or anyone famous who you think can find me a perfect spot, send them here!

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