How to Win an Emmy: Add it to your Bucket List

I have a pie-in-the-sky bucket list. My bucket list contains very specific items like:

  • Sing karaoke in Tokyo while wearing a pink wig like Scarlett Johnasson in Lost in Translation.
  • Hot air balloon ride over Napa with someone I’m madly in love with.
  • Win an Academy Award.
  • Win an Emmy® award.

Well, okay, those last two aren’t very specific at all when you think about it. I never specified what kind of Academy Award or what kind of Emmy® I wanted to win. I just put it out there for the universe to chew on.

I spent last weekend in Hollywood: at the 62nd Annual Primetime Engineering Emmy® Awards, as the recipient of an Emmy®. Yes, really.

There are three  types of Engineering Emmys, and these are the definitions:

The Engineering Emmy®: This award is presented to an individual, a company, or an organization for developments in engineering that are either so extensive an improvement on existing methods or so innovative in nature that they materially affect the transmission, recording or reception of television.

The Engineering Emmy® Plaque: This award is presented to those achievements that exhibit a high level of engineering and are important to the progress of the industry.

The Philo T. Farnsworth Award: This award honors an agency, company or institution whose contributions over a long period of time have significantly affected the state of television technology and engineering.

This year they awarded ONE Engineering Emmy®, TWO Farnsworth Awards (one went to Desilu Studios if that gives you an idea of how prestigious this award is), and FOUR Engineering Emmy® Plaques.

Ensequence and Showtime were awarded the Emmy® Plaque for Outstanding Achievement in Engineering Development for the Showtime Sports Interactive project, which I have been the technical operations lead on for the past 18 months.

I have submitted my application to become a member of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences. You either have to win an Emmy® or get signatures from two sponsors in your peer group (mine is Interactive Media) to get approved. I did both just to hedge my bets!

I am still on Cloud 9.

Engineering Emmy Awards 2010

Right before I walked in.

Engineering Emmy 2010

Accepting the award with Showtime.

Engineering Emmy Awards 2010 Stage

Standing on the stage after it was all over.

Big Bang Theory Emmy

Our hosts for the evening, Kunal Nayyar and Simon Helberg of Big Bang Theory.

The Emmys and Silversun Pickups

Let me just say that last Thursday was surreal. Wait a minute, let me back up a week or two.

The Emmy Nomination…

A few weeks ago I wrote in a Cheers and Jeers blog that a project I’m on had been nominated for an Engineering Emmy. The category we were in was tough, and the enthusiasm was tempered because of this. Nobody expected us to win.

And the Emmy goes to…

Well, we won! Ensequence (the company I work for) won a joint Engineering Emmy with Showtime for “Outstanding Achievement in Engineering Development” for Showtime Sports Interactive. I have been the technical lead on this project for the past 18 months so this is what I have been living and breathing for over a year.

Word in the hallways was that we would probably only get a few seats at the awards ceremony, so there was no way I was expecting to go. I assumed the CEO would go with the project manager or something.

Fast forward to last Thursday.

L.A. Bound…

I get an email (from someone I won’t name) asking if I’m available on August 14th to go to L.A. and attend the 62nd Primetime Emmy® Engineering Awards. Holy sh*t! It took me less than five seconds to reply, “YES!” And I spent the next three hours bouncing off the walls like a 5-year old on a sugar high, and texting all of my friends.

My company got two seats at the awards. TWO. And they decided to send me and the project manager, who is also a woman. That is so cool.

The 62nd Primetime Emmy® Engineering Awards will be hosted by none other than Simon Helberg And Kunal Nayyar of Big Bang Theory. It doesn’t get much cooler than that.


The Super Secret Silversun Pickups Concert…

Oh, I almost forgot about the second reason Thursday was so surreal. My friend Peter sent me a text asking me if I was going to the secret Silversun Pickups show, and he forwarded me the email with the clues from 94.7 KNRK. I had received the same email but hadn’t had any time to even open it. I read the clues, “Take the trolley to the Pearl…lips that are hot…” I immediately knew it was Hot Lips Pizza in the Pearl. So, I recruited my friend Joe to walk over there with me at 5pm to see if the Silversun pickups were really going to play a concert in the parking lot of the Ecotrust Building (where Hot Lips Pizza is located).

I think the pictures below speak for themselves. They came, they played, they jumped in a tinted-windows van immediately afterwards and headed to the Crystal Ballroom for sound check (they were playing a regular sold-out show there that night).

So let’s recap:

  1. I woke up and found out I was going to the Engineering Emmys.
  2. The day ended with a free concert by the Silversun Pickups,who played in a parking lot in the Pearl District.

SSPU take the stage in the Ecotrust parking lot.

Silversun Pickups Portland

Silversun Pickups Portland

Brian Aubert SSPU

Nikki Monninger SSPU

Three cyclists powered the show.

Cyclists SSPU

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