Thursday, March 1

My Fastest Day on Record

Today I flew up north to go to Pixar Studios. Can you believe it?! Pixar Studios! A group of about 10 of us went up for work and it was beyond cool. A bus picked us up and drove us through those famous Pixar gates. For some reason I thought the studios sat on a Teletubbies variety landscape of acre upon acre of well manicured rolling green hills. It is, in fact, extremely well manicured but it's not in the middle of nowhere and there is, mercifully, no creepy baby smiling down from the sun.

One poor soul was in charge of wrangling us on and off the bus. I called him the Den Mother. He acted as a sort of tour guide and was pointing out sites of interest including an outdoor amphitheater. He then pointed off in the distance to some sort of stadium that they do something in. It seemed incredibly tall with steep seating so I asked if that was where they played their quidditch matches. (They don't but certainly could if they felt like it.) It was at that point I seriously thought I must have stumbled upon some sort of heaven on earth because I realized, and I'm not kidding, it smelled exactly like freshly baked cinnamon rolls. I asked Den Mother "Why does it smell like cinnamon rolls? Are they kidding me?!" He laughed and explained that there was a bakery behind one of the buildings. Phew! I thought I was losing my mind.

We walked indoors and, I gotta say, the place is gorgeous. We should all be so privileged to work in such a fantastic environment. The floor resembles that of a basketball court. It's all very airy and environmentally sound and everyone is darting around on Razor scooters, and playing ping pong and casually eating in the open commissary. It's just too perfectly happy.

We all know that if you're a world class genius of a rocket scientist, you go to NASA. If you're a world class animating genius, you go to Pixar. I got to meet some of those world class animating geniuses and it was immediately clear that they were Super Genius level. The remarkable thing is that they were incredibly nice super geniuses.

There is a sort of reverence to Pixar. You're walking around dying to take pictures but you don't because it just isn't done. Besides, there is a feeling that as kind as everyone is, if you pulled out a camera you should expect be tackled. Everyone is SO nice and welcoming but everywhere you go it is clear that you are to stay put and not wander off. They have very tight security and you're not getting in that complex without an appointment and your name on a list. I must say I like it that way. Those people work their butts off the come up with completely unique films and I don't blame them for doing whatever they feel necessary to prevent leaks. It's all about protecting the fantastic worlds being created within those walls. I'm glad they're so good at both.

As we made our way back to the waiting bus someone finally snapped and pulled out a camera to take a few outdoor shots. I said "I need those! I was dying to take pictures in there but didn't dare." It seemed everyone felt the same way.

On the way home, I was traveling with someone terrified of flying. She explained her theory that if ever a celebrity was on her flight, it couldn't crash. I told her I disagreed and that if a celebrity was on my flight, if anything, it made me a little nervous. We got to the gate and she was thrilled to see semi-celebrity Keenan Ivory Waynans at the ticket counter. Even more exciting was the nun we spotted. My turbulence hating friend seemed to feel very good about both fellow passengers. Later, after hitting some of the dreaded turbulence, I leaned over and whispered "Don't worry! We've got Sister Mary What's-her-name up a few rows. She's got us covered."

... and that was my day of heaven on earth.

Disclaimer: The above photos were taken from the net. I haven't beaten todays pix out of my new friend yet.


Stacie said...

Sounds like a really cool day! I'm jealous!

shandon said...

Well, you did a very good job of not revealing any trade secrets. Grrrrrr.