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It All Started with a Big Bang

Featured Photo from It All Started with a Big Bang

Our Community Director Shares Highlights of Her California Adventure

My husband and I really don’t like to leave all three of our kids, and we seldom vacation alone together. I have actually written about why we take separate vacations for a parenting website, which you can read here. Earlier this year, my husband went to Colorado with a friend to go snowboarding. In March, it was my turn to take a trip, so I met one of my friends (Amanda) in Los Angeles for what turned out to be an epic girls' trip.

Let me start by explaining something that people ask me all the time. I am friends with Mayim Bialik. You might remember her as Blossom from the 1990’s hit television show. Currently she stars as the adorably geeky neurobiologist Amy Farrah Fowler on the hit show The Big Bang Theory. Mayim and I met in college. She attended UCLA, while I attended the University of Florida. We met at a conference for Jewish student leaders in Chicago about 20 years ago and we’ve been friends ever since. She is the most intelligent, down-to-earth, generous soul you could ever meet.

Amanda and I had an incredible trip. We visited with friends. We brunched. We shopped. We brunched. We went to Venice Beach. We brunched. We toured some incredible places where our friends work. Amanda’s brother is a writer and is currently working on a project for Lin Studios, which produces the Lego movies. We got to see the offices and much to the delight of my children (and husband), I met a professional Lego artist. We also visited my friend, Lake Mary High School graduate April (Jernigan) Warren, who is a Disney Imagineer. Now THAT was a treat.

But the most exciting things we did would have to be going to Dancing with the Stars and going to a taping of The Big Bang Theory. Mayim got us tickets for both. (It pays to know people.) Here are some of the highlights.

  • We arrived at the studio for Dancing with the Stars to find out we were on the VIP list. That meant we were on the floor (about 4 rows back) and our seats had our names on them! We were delighted.

  • They had a dance party on the floor before the show. We danced next to some of the pros – it was so fun!

  • RuPaul was sitting in front of us, and Aly Raisman was sitting across from us. There were assorted Bachelors and their wives in the audience. I had no idea who they were, but the 18-year-olds next to us were really excited! Yes we saw Nick, yes we saw his wife. Still, I had no idea who they were...

  • The show was pretty exhausting! We were on our feet for the entire two-hour live broadcast and we had to wear cocktail attire. My heels definitely came off about 90 minutes into the show. The energy in the room was so great. It was fun to cheer and boo the judges when we didn’t agree with their scores.

  • Even though cameras weren’t allowed in, a few special guests who had their phones were kind enough to snap pics with their phones and text them to us.

The next day we went to The Big Bang Theory taping.

I had gone once before, but this was Amanda’s first time. We were lucky enough to be in the front row since we were guests of Mayim’s. First, they had us watch the episode that will air the week before the one we were about to see. Then the cast came out and we watched them tape their scenes. It took about 2 ½ hours. The entire process is fascinating. They tape each scene a few times. They are recording the audience’s response, and if a joke doesn’t go well, writers are on hand to rewrite the joke on the spot.

I’m not going to give anything away. I’ll just say that Amy Farrah Fowler sings “Soft Kitty” in different languages. Mayim practiced this the weekend we were there. Can you imagine a more amusing lunch than Mayim practicing her Mandarin while you eat?

After the taping we were a few of the lucky guests who got to go down to the set. We met some of the cast, took a photo in Sheldon’s spot, the elevator, the stairs, and Penny’s apartment. It was magical. A highlight for me was meeting James Burrows – one of television’s most famous directors/producers.

All in all, Amanda and I agreed it was the perfect trip. We got a much-needed refresher we both needed. We had incredible experiences that most people only dream of. We saw two television shows, took photos with celebrities, and we went to brunch… did I mention that?

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Posted By: Karen Almond

I love the adventures that you share with your readers, Sam. I think that Big Bang Theory is one of the funniest, if not THE funniest show that I have ever seen. I am glad that you had this memorable opportunity.

Posted By: Jen

I love that you met James Burrows! He is such a legend. Very exciting! Thanks so much for sharing!

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