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Reader Party at the W
Finally, an actual "crasher" in the "daily crasher".
When I went to the party at the W downtown, I hadn't planned on writing about it. But so many people asked me if I would. And, I'm sitting in a hotel room in New York, so I figured I would. I didn't take any notes, though. And I drank a lot. So who knows what I'll remember (or remember accurately).
Contrary to what my job entails, I'm not the best at going up to people I don't know well, and striking up a conversation. They usually have to say something to me first.
I saw Barbarella when I walked in. Gave her a hug, talked briefly with her. I joked with her husband about not having his camera with him. I figured he'd have it everywhere. He laughed and said he used to, but found he'd be pulling over all the time to take pictures. I said, "You're like a heroin addict, but with photography." Listening to him talk about his craft is so enjoyable. Everyone should have a hobby in their life they enjoy this much.
Chris Cantore, the former 91X Dj, was playing the tunes. I went over and talked with him. I saw the word "Nico" I said "Wow, you must be a huge Velvet Underground fan." He said, "Wow, I can't believe you knew that. You're the first person. I usually have to explain to everyone why I named my son Nico." I asked if he had seen the documentary about her called "Nico Icon." I was surprised he hadn't.
After our conversations went to every musician under the sun, I realized I was monopolizing his time. And he had a cute woman nearby that I'm sure he would've rather chatted up. So I went off to mingle with others.
I saw an African-American guy sitting by himself. I remembered seeing him when I parked, and he asked me how long he had at the parking meter. We talked about his job, and a little about the Celtics Pistons game, which wasn't on any TV in the place. When I said I hate both those teams, and didn't know who to root against, he laughed and agreed with me.
I ran into a guy that was fascinated with the sand. The rooftop bar does that theme, with firepits, shells and aquatic stuff on the tables, etc. I said, "Yeah, I'm going to get home, and my shoes will be filled with sand." He said, "I should've worn my flip-flops."
I ran into Sean Kelly, a local comedian who works for the Reader. We talked a little about Michael Richards of Seinfeld, and his unsuccessful stand-up attemps. He was with a few people that worked for House of Blues, and somehow, I was able to score a pair of Ted Nugent tickets from them.
That works perfectly, because I was taken a friend a few years ago, and the show sold out. I'll now be able to repay the favor.
I met a photographer whose work I've admired in our pages. I told Mr. Decker I loved his work. I told him he looked like Sydney Pollock, and he said "Oh great! He's dead!" I replied, "Well, I meant when he was alive." His wife asked who she looked like and I sasid "Heather Lockler." She liked that. I didn't care for it as much when she said I looked a little like Bill Murray. Ouch.
We talked a great length about Pollack (in fact, I'll blog on him tomorrow). He asked questions about me crashing parties. And, his wife told a great story about crashing a party, and not realizing the person she was bragging to about getting in for the free food, was actually the person that put on the event. She was able to get out of it, by name dropping a few of her friends that would be there, that was of interested to the guy (wow...I completely messed up that story. it involved big name artists or furniture makers from some show....)
But, you forget things when women come around with trays and trays of drinks. Usually, they were these pink cosmos. As a guy, you never look cool with one of those in your hand. And, these were in smaller glasses, too. So, a few gulps, and it was gone. One time, the blonde with the tray said to me and a few people I was talking with "I'll just stay here, and you guys can finish the trash off."
We had an orange drink. A newscaster from KUSI said "I'm going to call it an Orange Embrace." We all agreed it was a good name. And a really strong drink.
Her and I talked a lot about local bands. And, I loved her attitude. She moved her a few years ago, and started going to clubs and getting into local music. More people should do this. We have a mutual friend in musician Steph Johnson, and because more people don't go support local musicians, there was such a small turnout at the Belly-Up Tavern for one of her recent shows.
I had to tell her how as a writer, I was once offered a job to write newscasts for 39 News. It paid $8.50 an hour. She laughed.
More drinks were brought over, and I was really buzzed. Since Tommy Bahama was one of the sponsors or something, they had some Rum & Cokes. I had never had one, and was surprised and how smmooth it was. Jack & Cokes disgust me. But, I could drink these all day. The waitress explained why the rum was so good. I ssked, "Do you own stock in this rum?" She smiled as she walked away, saying "I should."
Barbarella grabbed the mic, and started giving prizes away.
A few people came up and introduced themselves to me. It was nice to get feedback on some of the stories I've written in the past.
The biggest surprise was meeting Fred. The last week, we've been battling another guy on the Reader website. And, to talk with him in person was great. He had a lot of interesting stories. But at that point, I was so plastered from the drinks, I was hoping I didn't sound idiotic. My girlfriend had already given me crap because I interrupted Decked and his wife three times while they were telling a story.
When Fred went to talk with some other folks, I met the Navy wife. She had her hair cut, and we talked about the volume of letters her Reader cover story got.
I wanted to tell her about the time I met a guy at a party that wrote for Blind Date, and the amount of mail that show got from angry folks.
She said, "Oh my god, you're the party crasher! My friend wants a picture with you. I don't know where she is, though."
I had to leave to catch my flight to New York, so we never took that photo.
Probably a good idea. I'll see it posted somewhere, and say to myself....they're right. It looks Bill Murrayish.