Thursday, January 19, 2017

Brush With Celebrity!

Congresswoman Gabby Giffords, April, 2010
Congressman Ron Barber, Aug, 2013
Working at a high-profile location like the Mirror Lab, we get our occasional VIPs and celebrities. Frequently some of these groups are lead by the College President or more likely by founder Roger Angel or former Director Peter Strittmatter. The Lab is quite the local source of pride - and so it should be! I think I recall spotting Senator John McCain once, but have recorded two congress-persons, Gabby Giffords, shown at left, and her replacement Ron Barber at right. Gabby's photo was taken at a solar power technology meeting hosted at the lab and the photo is of a solar-powered car an engineering team had built. The photo was taken 8 months before she was shot in the head in an assassination attempt. Ron Barber's photo was taken in the Lab as he was hounded by the media! Since these photos we've also seen their Republican replacement Martha McSally...

Mike with Bill Walton
Linda and Bill, photo by Steve West
But I've never quite seen the excitement that was caused by a VIP last Friday. After announcing the UA/ASU basketball game at McKale Center Thursday night, Former UCLA and NBA standout, and now sports commentator Bill Walton was taking in a tour from engineer Mike Tuell! Evidently Mike had contacted him nearly a year ago through Bill's website offering a tour and it finally happened last week! Now you have to realize that Mike towers over most everyone at the Mirror Lab, so it was a bit unnerving to see someone, anyone, towering over him! And later I saw a photo that I also had to share - the same grinning Bill Walton REALLY towering over our receptionist Linda - who I always considered normal height, but appears deficient by comparison here... Oh, and his actual height - Mike claims it is 7', but there was some conspiracy involved for listing it officially at 6'11"...

Anyway, there was excitement in the lab as he was recognized by most, signing autographs and posing for pictures. Congressmen and Senators, I guess are dull by comparison compared to a famous athlete!

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