This is what Shawn Morton would look like if he had been made of LEGO sMoRTy71.com -- the personal website of Shawn Morton
UPDATE: This blog has been retired as of August 2011. See this post for more information or connect with me on Twitter.
Friday, September 26, 2008
"Rollin' VIP" in L.A.
I flew out to L.A. on Wednesday afternoon for a two-day business trip. I hadn't been to L.A. in almost 10 years, so I was excited to get back out there.

We had our first celebrity sighting in the Denver airport when I noticed that former New England Patriot and 3-time Super Bowl champ Ty Law was sitting about 10 feet away from me talking on his cellphone. Turns out he was connecting to L.A. on the same flight. Ended up bumping into him again at LAX baggage claim. While on his cellphone, I heard him utter these prophetic words, "I've got a 7 million dollar house, so I gotta take care of my cheese." Who can't relate with that?

As we arrived at our hotel (after an hour-long, bumper-to-bumper taxi ride on the 405 with no air conditioning), we run into the rest of our group who were just arriving from Dallas.

The view from my hotel room in L.A.
Depending on the smog, you could see the Hollywood sign from my hotel balcony

After getting checked in, we decided to hit The Ivy for dinner. No celebrity sightings there; however, we had a great dinner (I had the homemade lobster ravioli which was excellent).

After dinner, we headed back to the Four Seasons and I planned to call it a night. However, my friend Rob McKittrick (who wrote and directed "Waiting...") called and we decided to grab a drink. I hadn't see Rob in 13 years, so I didn't want to miss the opportunity.

We ended up going to The 3rd Stop in West Hollywood. There, we ran into Rob's producer friend Kat who joined us for a round. We were also briefly joined by Bryce Wagoner who is working on a new documentary about porn stars' lives after they leave the business. It is appropriately titled "Life After Porn." I ended up cutting the night short around midnight Pacific since my body was telling me it was really 3AM Eastern time.

Got up (too) bright and early on Thursday and spent most of the day at IPG's Emerging Media Lab. Met some really great people, talked about social media, gaming and mobile, and saw demos of some very cool technology.

Before heading out to dinner, we had a drink in the Four Seasons lounge. There, we saw director Joel Schumacher showing off his unique fashion sense (blue blazer, blue polo, burmuda shorts and rubber flip-flops) and his intense texting abilities.

Dinner was at Madeo on Beverly Blvd. The highlight of the night (and maybe the trip) was when Al Pacino arrived to have dinner with director Harold Becker and a handful of others at the table next to ours. Turns out it was Becker's birthday. Pacino and his female friend gave Becker a copy of "The Savage Detectives."

After gawking at Al for a while (and getting this really bad cameraphone photo), we decided to head out. On the way out of the restaurant, we walked past Robbie Robertson of The Band. Outside, the paparazzi were already waiting for Pacino to leave (Here is a video that one of them shot when he arrived. Note the shirt and scarves.).

We made a quick and uneventful (except for a loud, intoxicated cougar in thigh-high white boots) stop at AGO before returning to the Four Seasons. During our stroll around the Four Seasons' patio, we saw Nina Garcia from Project Runway.

We caught an early flight out of LAX Friday morning. On our connection to Denver, I sat next to green makeup artist Paige Padgett. I gave her some tips on Twitter and she told me about some of the work she has done for people like Tim Gunn, Phil from The Amazing Race and Jillian Michaels from The Biggest Loser.

During our layover in Denver, we spotted Dan Rather and his assistant. This would turn out to be our final celebrity sighting of the trip.

I spent most of today getting some rest and getting back in the real world. "Morton! Fries!"

About Shawn Morton

Married father of 6; VP of Social Media at JPMorgan Chase; gluten-free; gadget enthusiast; hair metal aficionado; #Movember man View more on LinkedIn.