Bradford Anderson’s Fan
the SoapNet camera crew waiting, ready to film his event, Bradford arrived
munching on a breakfast burrito looking distinctly unSpinelli-ish with his
humor and confident body language. In the hallway in front of the event
room, before Debbie O’Connor introduced him, I watched him warm up with
several exuberant jumps, talking easily with Debby O’Connor and the
SoapNet people. It struck me how much he has changed from the first time
I saw him.
first time I laid eyes on Bradford Anderson in person, he was walking
behind Steve Burton like a shadow with his head down, avoiding eye contact
with anyone as they headed towards the stage to announce Night Shift 1 at
last year’s Kick Off Event. Clearly, Steve Burton was the guide and
Bradford was his grasshopper when it came to fan events. Over the past
year, his star has risen. Last year, he was charming and grateful to be
adored. This year I saw a man growing into the popularity blooming around
him and appreciating the moment. What I enjoyed most about Bradford both
last year and this year is how appreciative he is of the fans’ support.
No airs of importance or dismissiveness towards fans, everything about him
shouts “happy to be here” and it’s contagious.
speaking a few words on stage, he began the event by working the tables as
the camera crew hovered around recording his every nuance and syllable. I
marveled at his ability to be Bradford Anderson while surrounded not only
by fans soaking in his every word but also cameras and microphones. Guess
that’s why he’s the actor and I’m the journalist because he laughed, joked
and spoke with fans like the cameras practically in his face and the
microphone hovering over his head were table accessories.
breakfast was being served, Katrina and I left for our own quick breakfast
at the Patio Café. When we returned Kirsten Storms and Bradford were
seating on stage doing a Q and A.
Others will post more detailed write ups but this is what hit my note pad.
common to talk about a happy dance but Bradford really does one. That’s right, he’s perfected a signature
dance and I’ll be waiting for Spinelli to break out his twinkle toes.
When he does, I’ll laugh knowing that Bradford has incorporated
a bit of himself in to his GH character.
Obviously, Bradford surfs the net because he referenced a really cool guy
named Matt Harding who travels around the world to amazing places and does
a little dance when he gets there. If you are seeking a slice of happy,
you can visit
WhereTheHellIsMatt and know that Bradford found it entertaining also.
Guza stopped Bradford in the hall one day and said, “Watch Ingo.”
Thinking there was something about Ingo’s acting style that Guza wanted
Bradford to see, he worried that he was doing something wrong. It wasn’t
until he read the script where Spinelli emulates Jax that he realized he
was supposed to be learning to speak with an Aussie accent.
Bradford announced that he is now a property owner. He has a couple
bedrooms that are NOT painted regrettably pink but off white. In one
bedroom resides the famous futon that Steve Burton slept on when he spent
stopped by recently with a bag of In and Out Burgers, chips and soda after
a late evening filming and again slept on the futon. Bradford laughed that when Steve Burton goes on a junk food
binge he goes all out.
Brown, white and blue Martha Stewart towels from K-Mart decorate his
has a tree named Rosalita.
Tom Pelphrey lives in a rental unit on the property. He has cats
named Dick and Burt and he feeds stray cats in the neighborhood. They
call him the cat whisperer.
Kirsten and Bradford clearly enjoy each others company. She commented
that Bradford doesn’t give himself enough credit about his
accomplishments. In her opinion, Bradford’s house is lovely
and suits him.
Kirsten Storms is left handed. Not that it means much of anything but
being a lefty myself, I noticed.
person asked when Spinelli and Maxie would be together and Bradford
laughed about his upcoming promo without his shirt. The scenes aired on
the Tuesday after the Fan Club weekend.
about working with Sarah Brown both Bradford and Kirsten expressed their
awe of her acting abilities saying, “She’s an acting monster.” Kirsten
said in scenes with her they just stand back and let her (Sarah Brown)
one fan table, gifts were given to Bradford and Kirsten in honor of Maxie
and Spinelli hitting the sheets.
rest of the event consisted of time at tables with individual fans and
since it would have been impolite and stalkerish to follow Bradford and
Kirsten around (though I admit the urge was there) we decided to head over
to Nazanin Bonaidi’s event which was due to begin shortly.
Nazanin Bonaidi Fan Event
with Guest Peter Billingsley
year Nazanin arrived at the Kick Off Party, a soap fan event virgin with
no clue about the loyalty displayed by GH fans. This year she hosted her
own event and participated in other fan events in recent months. Petite
and perfect body wise, she projects genuineness and fans were instantly
has a part in Iron Man, one of this summer’s blockbuster movies produced
by Peter Billingsley.
Leyla had to be drunk and dancing on a table at Jake’s she wasn’t sure how
to act since she’d never been drunk in real life. Her mom asked her how
she was going to do the scenes since she’d never experienced drunkenness.
Never let it be said that she’s not a team player. To make the scenes
real, she drank right before she did them. Not so much that she forgot
her lines but enough that when she stumbled, it wasn’t acting. We all
laughed about her drinking on the job, for her job.
lively discussion ensued over Leyla’s prospective romantic partners.
Since Patrick is taken, we considered Spinelli (Maxie has her hooks in
him), the new doctor (didn’t know where he was going), or Nikolas (she
thought Nadine had dibs on Niko). No solid romantic leads appear to be in
Leyla’s future but she’s hopeful that someone will show up.
Billingsley arrived and after introductions the Q and A proceeded.
Cash was sitting by Katrina and me practically jumping up and down with
excitement. He asked when Iron Man 2 would be coming out and was happy to
learn that Iron Man 2 is set for release in 2010 although the
script hasn’t actually been written yet.
The Avengers, a
story alluded to at the end of Iron Man, is scheduled for release in
2011. Dylan and many others applauded at the news.
Billingsley credits having a solid family behind him for keeping his feet
on the ground after the popularity of A Christmas Story. Living in
Arizona, he didn’t experience the pressure of child stardom nearly as much
as he could have.
grew up, he worked hard to transition from actor to producer. Starting at
the ground floor doing grunt work, he worked his way into the position he
holds today as Executive Producer for more than one popular film.
Man posters were given out while Nazanin and Peter worked their way around
the room autographing pictures and posters and answering more questions.
Snaring his attention for a moment, I asked him if he thought soap fans
were much different than other fans wondering if he’d been to an event
like this before. He mentioned that his brother worked on a soap so he’d
observed his brother’s experience and expected passionate fans.
the event wound to a close, Katrina and I slipped out to meet up with
Delena (Katrina’s daughter) who was hanging out at the pool with Dylan
Cash, scarf down a sandwich and relax. We planned to slip into Greg
Vaughan’s event but as it turned out, GH was on, we watched for a bit,
chatted and without planning naptime rolled over us.
Friday afternoon/evening turned into a relaxing time for us. In all the
years I’ve attended the GHFCW this is the first time I’ve actually
experienced any down time. Boy did I appreciate it! A couple other
events were scheduled for Friday and I was able to glean only small bits
of info about the events.
Greg Vaughan’s Event
time over, we stopped in to catch the last couple minutes if Greg’s
event. He was busy talking to fans moving from table to table so I was
only able to snap a couple pictures. I can attest that Greg looks as
wonderful as ever.
the pictures aren’t better.
Greg is known for his
Kelly Monaco looked
beautiful in her yellow dress.
Carolyn Hennesy in the
dark pants and top.
Sonya Eddy’s Event
you wondering what’s up with Sonya Eddy? So are we. Her event proceeded
differently from the rest in that no press was allowed. The closed door
made me curious and presented a challenge so I had to stroll in and ask if
I could watch from the back and do a write up. Umm, no. I was politely
ushered right back out as though I were a spy trying to ferret out
volatile political secrets. From my brief moments inside the sacred, no
enter room, it looked as though folks were enjoying themselves.
Hopefully, the one press person they allowed access will write up
the event and post it along with pictures on the net so the wonderfulness
of Sonya can spread. Somewhere on the net. Good luck with that.
know that Reign Morton (Cassius, the orderly) was one of her guests
because I escorted him personally to the sacred, no enter room after he
strolled into the lobby area of the Cascade Room where Katrina and I were
chatting looking for Sonya’s event. Also, later in the evening as I
headed towards my room I spotted Kiko Elsworth standing in the hallway
talking to a friend so I’m guessing he was at her event also. I would
have snapped a picture because he was looking handsome and healthy but he
was intent on his conversation and I didn’t want to intrude.
Nancy Lee Grahn’s Event
Nancy served pizza and fun dialogue with a helping of
Sebastian Roche at her event. Because of a commitment out of town, she
was unable to attend the Fan Club Luncheon on Saturday.
Laura Wright’s Event
know is about LW’s event is that folks left with sore bellies from
laughing so hard. Next year I hope to experience it for myself even if I
have to leap tall buildings to get there!
Update on Friday’s small, dark haired, angry lady who shook her finger in
my face: Seeing her speaking with another woman as I crossed through the
pool area, I stopped to apologize again. It wasn’t happening. She
immediately began ranting about my unfair treatment of her and actors
needing fans more than fans needing actors. It was clear that my apology
was NOT accepted. Unable to appease her, I said that I hoped she would be
able to get a picture on Saturday. She assured me that she would NOT be
standing in line for a picture with Steve and it was all my fault. I
couldn’t follow her reasoning. She turned to the lady beside her to rant
some more. Not willing to participate in a pointless conversation or to
unwittingly inflame her further, I walked away, hearing her speaking
loudly to the other woman about the fact that I was walking away. It was
clear I couldn’t win.
However, a lesson was hovering in the background waiting for me to grasp
it. Thinking back over my interaction with this woman, I honestly
couldn’t find any bad attitude on my part so I didn’t feel guilty about
how I’d handled the situation. I tried earnestly to apologize twice. The
startling lesson hit that no matter how sorry I was she didn’t have to
accept my apology. That has never happened to me before. Realizing that,
I felt sad. Sad that it couldn’t be resolved. Sad that she apparently
valued her anger over letting it go and enjoying the rest of the
weekend. It’s darned unpleasant to hang onto anger much less pick at it
like a scab to inflame it further. I don’t know if she let go enough to
stand in line the next day for her picture with Steve Burton but I
sincerely hope so.
crawled into bed fairly early so we could be bright eyed and ready for
Review of Day 1 of the GHFCW!
On my way
All roads (or airways) lead west. At least that’s how it is for me as I
made my annual trek to the General Hospital Fan Club Weekend, my one
yearly break from family and responsibilities. Four glorious days of
deep discussion, laughter, fandom, and making new acquaintances. It’s a
total girlfriends r us, quality time extravaganza with the added spice of
hunky, breath stealing guys and mind blowingly beautiful women strolling
through time and space with us normal folks. The only way I can recap is
in time order so here goes with my impressions, stories and observations.
Did you know that there are real nuns who wear black habits like the movie
Sister Act flying around the country? I saw three waiting to board
a plane at LAX. I wished I could sit down beside them and ask them about
their lives because their day to day reality must be completely different
than mine. That’s definitely a conversation on the shelf for someday.
Arriving at LAX, my luggage was calling so I headed towards baggage claim
with a stopover in the first ladies room I saw. Ordinarily I’m not one
for bathroom stories but this little event made me laugh. As I was
washing my hands I heard a pounding from inside one of the stalls and the
voice of a woman who sounded older (older than me that is though I
couldn’t see for sure) and an intense demand to “let me out.” Another
woman who obviously knew her tried to tell her to unlatch the door but the
woman inside was too busy pounding on the door with her fist demanding to
be let out to hear her.
“Let me out!”
“Push the latch on the door.”
“Let me out!”
“Can you see the latch on the door? Is it stuck?”
“Let me out! Open the door!”
“Do you see the latch?”
“Open the door!”
The door swung open and her only comment was a calm, “Oh.”
Like she hadn’t just locked herself into a stall and then apparently
forgotten how she did it. I had to laugh.
Katrina and I arrived at the hotel within minutes of each other and
overcame a couple minor glitches such as the room we thought was equipped
with two king sized beds actually had only one. Katrina and I shared the
bed. Delena, her daughter, slept on a comfy roll away cot. The next
glitch hit when we learned that though we had arrived around 10:30, our
room would not be available until 3. Even that wasn’t an issue as we were
ready for lunch (getting up at 3 a.m. means lunch time hits early) at the
Patio Café and to visit with our waiter, Mo, who was waiting for us. In
previous years, Katrina has charmed Mo right down to his socks so he
remembers us each year, fixes her potato skins just so and provides an
endless supply of iced tea. Fun conversation and great service - what
could be better?
After eating, we chatted with folks as they passed through the lobby as we
recognized them from years past. The lobby of the Sportsman’s Lodge has
undergone some decorating changes and the effect is debatable. Let me
just say that if you have ever fake fished, or pretend hunted, you would
feel right at home. More on that subject later.
Once in our room, we spent an absorbing couple hours catching up and
talking about things we touch on in e-mails but have a hard time going
into in depth. LOL, put two writers at a keyboard and LOTS of words are
typed but there is never enough time to write/say all that’s in our
heads. Katrina and I covered a multitude of deep subjects that will be
appearing in my journal for many moons. We were so deep in discussion
that we forgot time and surfaced about 10 minutes before we were scheduled
to help with check in for the Kick Off Event. We brushed teeth, threw on
clothes and hurried to the Cascade Room.
The Kick Off Event
Check in proceeded quickly as we have a system down pat. One person
checks names and verifies ID while a second person puts on the
wristbands. Katrina checks, I band, smooth and easy. My favorite part of
check in has to be talking to the people as they arrive all excited and
ready to enjoy the evening.
Ignacio Serricchio was strolling about, helping his band set up. It’s
obvious that Nacho is enjoying his life and his varied career. I caught a
quick glimpse of a poster for a One Man Show (I think) but I can’t find
any reference to it on the ‘net. If you want more Nacho, I am sure
Debbie Morris can help you find him. From Delena’s happy face, I know
that he still gives great hugs as he came up behind her and wrapped his
arms around her. She glowed. I missed mine this year but I was happy for
Steve Burton arrived first. He headed right for the stage and began
entertaining the crowd. Within moments, Dylan Cash, Sebastian Roche, and
Rick Hearst joined him.
Steve Burton, Dylan
Cash, Sebastian Roche, Rick Hearst joined shortly by Greg Vaughan with his
baby on his hip.
Since check in was pretty much done, I headed towards the stage for a
couple shots of hunkdom in action. Dylan observed that he was on
stage with his three uncles. Sebastian Roche spoke about his charity
that involves the children of Sudan. His trip to the Sudan affected
him deeply and he planned to use the money from his event and silent
auction items to promote his new passion. (I’ve searched the net for
a reference to his charity but so far, I’ve been unable to find it or I’d
give you a link. Maybe someone out there can e-mail me and I’ll post
Actors that I know were at the event include Steve Burton, Dylan Cash, Jay
Pickett, Greg Vaughan, Sebastian Roche, Carolyn Hennesy, Megan Ward, Rick
Hearst, Kin Shriner, and Reign Morton. Hopefully, there will be
other write ups that offer more details than mine.
Greg Vaughan joined them on stage as Steve Burton made his way towards the
floor. That’s when the wonderful, magical thing happened. Talk
about standing in the right place at the right time! Debbie Morris
glanced my way and asked me to escort him. It’s probably
embarrassing to admit how excited I was to be given the task of hanging
out with Steve Burton for an indeterminate period of time. Flaming
appendicitis could have struck me and I wouldn’t have left his side.
So, not to be lopsided or anything, but I don’t know much about what the
other actors did or said since I was wholly absorbed in my appointed task.
Of course, Steve was asked about the
juice. That would be Mona Vie the drink of choice many GH cast
members swear by. I am not his walking, talking, typing
advertisement but I’ll tell you in brief what was said because, well,
because it was Steve Burton who said it which is precisely why so many
fans are willing to listen and participate in the Mona Vie craze.
Mona Vie helps with high blood pressure, arthritis, inflammation, fatigue
and a multitude of other ailments. 3-4 ounces a day provides more
than 10 servings of fruit.
Steve can personally attest to higher energy and fewer colds along with
his wife and children.
More people than I could recall came up to him to ask about the juice or
about Friday’s scheduled conference call and he happily answered the same
questions over and over.
would bother me that he is using his celebrity to get people to buy a
product except that his every word and body movement showed that he
believes in what he’s selling and his enthusiasm spills over onto the
people asking him about Mona Vie. He said it several times so I don’t
feel as though I am spilling private information when I repeat that he’s
made over $400,000 in the last 4 months selling The Juice.
Also a Mona Vie juice drinker, it was Guza’s idea to use the juice in the
scenes between Jason and Spinelli when Jason was sick. Steve didn’t know
it was in the script until he read it.
When Spinelli spilled the glass of fruit juice it stained his face for
half a day.
Remember Jason’s long hair a couple months ago? He grew it out because he
was scheduled to play a part in a Western. However, the writer’s strike
threw off the scheduling. The movie is still planned and when you see his
hair start to get longer you’ll know he’s preparing for his role. It
takes about 6 months to grow out.
doesn’t know how to ride a horse but luckily his wife rides so she’s
Steve’s contract is up in October. He was asked about his future plans
One young lady asked him if Carly and Liz were drowning, which one would
Jason save. After countless questions about juice, Steve had to pause and
regroup. He said no one had ever asked him that before. After signing
the lady’s picture and thinking for a moment he replied, “Everyone wants
to throw Carly off a cliff sometimes.” This doesn’t exactly answer the
question but perhaps offers some insight into Jason’s perception of Carly.
For three hours Steve signed photos and answered questions. He tried to
not take photos with anyone though he kept making exceptions if someone
had a reason that they couldn’t go to Saturday’s event. One lady asked
for a photo and I explained that he wasn’t taking pictures with people
tonight but would be happy to take them on Saturday. Seconds after that
another woman asked if her mother could have her picture taken with Steve
as she wouldn’t be at Saturday’s event so he graciously agreed. The first
lady saw him take the picture and she marched right over, shook her finger
in my face and scolded me for not being fair. I tried to explain what she
saw but she was too busy being angry. She stomped away in a whirlwind of
tiny, dark haired righteous indignation. I was sorry for her unhappiness
but a part of me could see the comical. At 48 years old, I haven’t had a
finger shook in my face since…gee, I can’t remember when.
the picture signing wound down, he made his way to a table set up in a
corner of the ballroom with a Mona Vie representative. Clearly friends,
they chatted as still more people came to ask him about Mona Vie. It
amazed me that he remembered so many names and faces as fans came to speak
Reign Morton stopped by the table to ask Steve what he was supposed to do
and how long he should stay. Steve advised him to stay until he was
tired. Reign is one of those guys that looks good from afar but up close
he’s even better in an oh-my-goodness-I-think-I-forgot-to-breath kind of
way. Though new to the soap fan event scene, he looked as though he was
thoroughly enjoying the attention.
Scheduled to attend Rebecca Herbst’ event as guest at 9 p.m. Steve stepped
out to use the facilities and call his wife a little before 9 as the Kick
Off Party was winding down. He began talking with one of the
photographers in a side hallway and he didn’t need me as a buffer any
more. My job was done though I would have gladly hung around as his
shadow for the rest of the evening.
It’s no secret that Jason continues to be one of my favorite GH characters
though I try not inflict my personal preferences on others when writing
about the show. I’ve been to several of Steve’s events and one reason I
continue to enjoy Jason is because I admire the actor. While standing by
him, I watched him interact with others and how they responded to him. He
sets respectful boundaries and maintains them. Whether acting or selling
Mona Vie, he gives 100% while remaining a nice guy. I appreciated the
chance to watch him in action.
you are interested, here is the main website for
We snapped this at the
end of the event. I could sit and listen to Sebastian Roche talk in his
French accent for hours about his interesting life.
Sonya Eddy arrived at
the end of the kick off party and posed for a couple pictures before
heading to Rebecca Herbst event. Such a classy lady, she makes me wish we
could go out for a bite to eat and talk for hours. Plus, she’s funny.
Content with our first evening at the GHFCW, Katrina, Delena and I
strolled to our room comparing notes and relating our individual
experiences. Though we’d all be up since early morning (3 a.m., also
known as the middle of the night), Katrina and I had some serious catching
up to do. We talked until late even though we had to rise early to attend
Bradford Anderson’s event in the morning. From start to finish, it had
been a great day to be alive.