Okay, this is me, finally writing about my trip to New York last weekend. I’m going to just go through the whole weekend, but I’ll put in titles for the major events, in case you just want to read about one thing. Warning: It’s gonna be long.
So it started on Friday afternoon. Left work at 4:30 to catch my bus, which didn’t leave until 5:30, but I was a.) paranoid and b.) wanted to get some food for the road. The bus came a little late, and didn’t have outlets in every seat as advertised. It also seemed to be lacking heat. The bus ride home was fine, as was my sister’s trips, so I somehow got the ghetto bus on the way up. Blerg. Entertained myself by listening to some podcasts and watching season 1 of Big Bang Theory. (I love you, Sheldon Cooper. I also love video iPods. Best. Invention. Ever.) Anyway, I got to New York around 10, met up with my sister, and we took a taxi to our hotel. We didn’t get to bed till like, 2 a.m.
Saturday afternoon, SaTC hotspots tour
Saturday morning, we woke up and headed to Starbucks before going to the Sex and the City Hotspots tour. This was very cool. Our tour guide was a young pretty blonde, who was a part time guide and full time (?) stand up comic. I wouldn’t go see her comedy. She was fine for the tour…a little too bubbly for my taste, but I guess that’s to be expected, as it was for Sex and the City. She was also at times way TMI, but overall, she was good. She told us lots of stuff about the show, and behind the scenes, and facts about the actresses. (Did you all know that Kristen Davis was a recovering alcoholic? I didn’t.) We basically went all around the city, starting at the Plaza, going to Soho and the West Village, and ending up by Bryant Park – specifically right by the HBO Store. A smart thing to do, and yes, I totally succumbed. Got my dad a Sopranos hat, my mom a Gem Saloon (from Deadwood) glass, and myself, a black t-shirt that says Absof***inglutely.
So the tour was mostly on the bus. Our guide would say, “And now we’re coming up on (x landmark). If you recall this is where (x happened).” Then we’d pass it and she’d play the corresponding clip. But we did make 3 stops – one at The Pleasure Chest, where Charlotte bought The Rabbit, in the West Village, where Magnolia Bakery is (which is actually just stuff of legend in my family – I had forgotten it was in the show) as well as some stores, and once at ONeial’s, the bar that was used as Scout – Aidan and Steve’s (STEVE!) bar. The bar was very cool. It has all this intricate woodwork. Our tour guide informed us that was a big reason the show used it, as they wanted a place that would have a lot of Aidan The Furniture Maker in it.
The other highlights were going past The Little Church Around the Corner, which is in…midtown, I think? Maybe? It’s where Samantha met Friar Fuck, which is actually my least favorite SaTC plot line of all time. BUT, it was a really pretty church, and it has a cool history: Way back in the day, when people revered actors very poorly (our tour guide likened it to porn stars today), a lot of churches refused to have funerals for them. The Little Church Around the Corner (or The Church of Transfiguration) was one of the few that actually did. The church has always had a good relationship with actors. So, it was appropriated for a show that highlights NY to use it. Also cool was seeing the New York Public Library, where Carrie and Big were supposed to get married in the movie. Fun fact from tour guide: You CAN get married there; you can’t return books there – it’s a research library. Oops, SaTC. Maybe Carrie shouldn’t have returned her book of love poems, huh?
Outside The Pleasure Chest. don’t worry, we just bought a funny (and completely clean) card. For the record though, it’s a full-on sex store. I’ve been in them before, but never with members of my family. It was a little weird, I’m not gonna lie.
Magnolia Bakery from across the street. And FYI, that’s a line out the door you see. It’s always like that, day or night. BUT, our tour company has some sort of deal, so our guide went right in and got us cupcakes. I had a chocolate on chocolate, which was excellent.
Me in ONieal’s, AKA Scout. I just had a water, but the bar did have a line up of cosmos when we came in. It was like, noon. Too early for this girl. And FYI, if you are ever in the neighborhood, go there – the seats were ridiculously comfortable.
A weird pic, I know – but this is the ceiling in ONieal’s. Cool, huh?
This is what the bar part looks like. It’s actually pretty small. But look, toward the front of the bar – remember when Carrie stood there looking for Aidan, and Samantha was sore from using a strap on with her girlfriend? And when Steve made me cry (as always) by telling Miranda that he never would have gotten off his ass and opened the bar if it hadn’t been for her? *sigh*
Outside of ONieal’s.
So, the bus dropped us off at the HBO store, and after I was in fangirl heaven and bought a bunch of stuff, we met Nicki at Bryant Park. Fashion week had just ended, and they were still breaking down the tents. I found this a little bit exciting. Tim Gunn, I miss you!
I actually took this picture right before we met Nicki . My sister was on the phone with her, and like, two seconds later she walked up. I said to Dori (my sister), “Oh great. Now she’s gonna think I’m such a tourist for taking a picture of Bryant Park.” My sister’s response: “Sarah, you ARE a tourist.”
We went around the corner to the New York Public Library, and eventually made our way to The Little Church Around the Corner, going through a lot of downtown along the way. (Midtown, maybe? I don’t know.) The church took a long time to find, so we got to see a lot of the city. Then we went back to the hotel for a bit so we could get ready for the show.
New York Public Library
Fun lion statue. And FYI, EVERYBODY takes this picture. As do they the next one…
I’m all bundled up because it got COLD.
Here’s the church my sister was determined to find.
So, after a bit of a rest, we met up with Nicki again and we went for a drink and appetizer before the show. I forget where we ate. The appetizers were very good and very tiny. Oh, New York. And then, finally, it was time to go to The Booth Theater for the play.
So, we were in the front row, right? Now, I thought that this meant we’d be a little ways back, because the orchestra pit would spit out some. Umm…no. The orchestra was actually UNDER the stage, not spit out, and so we were like…see how far away you are from your computer right now? That’s how close we were. I could have reached out and touched Malcolm and Will. (Don’t worry, I didn’t.) When we discovered this, Nicki and I couldn’t stop laughing. My sister just got really freaked out. So, this was very cool, but also, put on a little bit of pressure. Like, we all tried really hard not to move during the show, because we didn’t want to distract them. And, not that we were bored, but if we had to yawn or cough or something, we tried our best to suppress it. We were all very concerned with NOT distracting them. Also, Nicki and I were really into watching Malcolm, because, in addition to being gorgeous, he’s also, you know, a wonderful actor, and has the best facial expressions and reactions to what’s going on. So, when it was Will’s turn to speak or sing or whatever, we just wanted to look at Malcolm, but felt like we should pay attention to Will, since he was RIGHT THERE in front of us.
The play itself was great, I thought. Was the story the most original? No. (But what story is?) Was the music awe-inspiring? No, but it was GOOD and very pretty, and Will Chase and Malcolm Gets both have wonderful voices and sang it very well. But for me, the real reason to see the show – what should have kept audiences coming – was the chemistry between the two characters, and the fact that they were played by two amazing actors. Of the two, I’d say that Will Chase is the stronger singer (and don’t get me wrong, Malcolm has a wonderful voice) and Malcolm is the stronger actor. But either way, they were both a pleasure to watch.
I’m not at the point yet where I can write intelligently about it, so if you want to really know what I thought, read this and this . Those reviews pretty much sum up my thoughts. And yes, I’m still heartbroken it closed. Though, as you’ll see in the second link, one of the reasons they closed the show so soon is so the producers could use their remaining money to put out a cast recording. Which is VERY exciting. Now, hurry up and do it!
Things I Learned about Malcolm Gets Sitting Inches Away:
1.) He has very nice fingernails. They are trimmed just right, and filed in little half circles perfectly.
2.) He has very long, delicate fingers. Considering he plays piano like a mofo, this doesn’t surprise me.
3.) He is very pale, which I normally find a big turn off, but it works for him.
4.) His hair is still wild, and, when not done by professionals on movie or TV sets, gets frizzy and wiry. I wanted to run my hands through it, despite the fact that…
5.) He sweats, a lot, on stage. And cries. We could see the sweat and the watery eyes. As my sister said, “He literally put his sweat and tears into his performance.”
6.) He spits, a lot, on stage. As does Will Chase, and probably, anyone in the theater. Which, think about that – normally speaking, one doesn’t spit. Think about how HARD you have to be speaking, you know? I’m not a trained actor or anything, but this kind of baffles me. (I’ve obviously thought about it too much.) And, at one point, he spit on me, on my neck. Yes, I’ve washed it since.
7.) He’s very thin, but not too thin.
8.) He had on the most adorable shoes ever, these white tennis shoes that were almost Chucks but they weren’t. They were so dorky and adorable. I mean, it was his character, but still. Loved them.
9.) He has one of the most expressive faces ever, and it’s really a pleasure to watch him on stage. He’s always doing something. Which, I know is the point of acting, but not everyone is on, without a break, for the entire show.
10.) He had a bottle of water with him on stage, which he occasionally drank from. I’ve never seen someone do that on stage, but considering the show as 90 minutes with no break, and mostly singing, it makes sense.
So, afterward, we were standing around, as I don’t think Nicki and I wanted to leave. (Well, I can’t speak for her, but I know I didn’t want to leave. I didn’t want the show/experience to be over.) Then someone mentioned the stage door, and I don’t think anyone but me really want to go stand outside and wait for them to come out, but…we did. And, for the record, let me just say I have never done ANYTHING like that before. I’ve never had a desire to meet actors (I mean, there’s the occasional NPH daydream, but really, what do you say to them? Especially me, as I get totally tongue tied in front of celebrities.) However, something possessed me. I was determined. I think I was flying on adrenaline.
So we waited outside for maybe 10 minutes. There was a crowd of maybe…20-25 people. I didn’t think that was a lot, but was informed it was. So, yay? I dunno. Anyway, everyone but me was freezing and starving, and I could have had no coat on at all, and could have gone hours without eating. Cause, you know, adrenaline. Malcolm came out first, and I watched people surround him, and noted that someone took a picture. I didn’t want to be that jerk who asked for one if no one else did. So, my sister and I made our way through the crowd, and waited patiently. He was sort of all over the place, going from one side of the crowd to the other. We finally got close, and he was signing a bunch of stuff for these two fanboys. (And, I know I’m not one to talk, but I am quietly a fangirl in public, you know?) So these guys were asking him a bunch of questions about the merchandise, and talked about how they went all over the city looking for a poster of the show. Malcolm told them to check the website, and then signed my program. I said thanks, and he said you’re welcome and just as I was going to ask for a picture, he was distracted again by the stupid fanboys and pulled away. So my sister snapped a picture, but, as you’ll see below, it didnt’ work at all. And it startled Malcolm and he jumped a bit. Dori was then humiliated. “I didn’t know what to do!” she said. “I was trying to get the picture, and he was walking away, and I panicked!”
We went back to Nicki and she asked if I had gotten the picture. I told her no, and must have looked absolutely crushed.She was all, “Well go back.” And I said, “No…I was just there, and he already signed my program, and I’ll look like some weird stalker.” “No you won’t,” she said. “Go back!”
I looked at my sister, who was like, NO WAY am I going back over there. So I said, “No…it’s okay.” At which point Nicki grabbed my arm and said, “C’mon, Sarah. C’mon, lets go!” and pulled me over like I was a little kid. (Which was necessary because I never would have gone over again by myself.)
So we went over to the group. Malcolm was trying to sign someone’s program but her pen wouldn’t work. We had the following exchange:
Him: Does anyone have a sharpie? (to me) Do you have a sharpie?
Me: No, but I have a pen.
Him: Can I borrow it?
Me: Sure. (Gives him pen, he signs and gives it back to me. Then he takes a picture with the girl and gives the pen back to me)
Me: You’re welcome.
Then he started to walk away, and Nicki called, “Excuse me, Mr. Gets?” He didn’t hear, so she said, louder, “Excuse me, sir?” He turned around and she said, “My friend here is a big fan of yours. I am too, actually. Could she get a picture with you?” He said, “Aww, of course.” and put his arm around me, and I put my arm around him. She snapped the picture, and then said, “The show was great, by the way.” He thanked her. I said, “Yeah it was great.” and then said something very dorky that I will not repeat here about being in the front row, and he kinda laughed (that, “uh..okay…” laugh) and went over to other people.
For the next like, hour…well, okay really for the rest of the night, including when I was supposed to be sleeping, I was on the most incredible adrenaline rush/high/euphoria ever. I really didn’t know that meeting someone you really enjoy and admire would be so thrilling! I can honestly say it was one of the best experiences of my life. (Yeah, I know how that sounds, but really…it was.) I don’t know that I would ever do it again with another actor/musician/whatever. Partly because I don’t want to ruin that feeling, and partly because I did it once, I think in the best possible way, and it wasn’t someone so hugely famous that there had to be security or there was a big whole mob of people.
Anyway, we walked through Times Square. My companions were talking about finding a place to eat, but I really wasn’t paying attention. I was on a whole different planet. I just sort of followed them around, not cold or hungry, just elated. I called Liz and told her about it, as she had said to call if anything exciting happened. So I did, and can I just say – if you all ever have the need to call someone and totally squee and be excited and fangirly over something that just happened, call Liz. She had the exact right amount of excitement for me. Cause sometimes, you know, you get excited and want to call someone, and their reaction is not appropriate and then you’re not excited anymore. She had the perfect reaction.
April! This was among the posters outside The Booth Theater.
This is when my sister tried to take the picture. I showed this to a friend and he said, “Look how intently you are staring at him.” Yeah. He’s still talking to the stupid fanboys. Grrr.
Hee, I forgot to tell this story. Nicki and I were waiting behind these girls (they of the non-working pen) and she quietly said, “Hey Sarah, look.” I saw the bag and we both laughed. I said, “Quick, take a picture.” So she discretely took the picture. It was very funny. But I think you had to be there.
Hee! This has not yet gotten old. It’s still new, and I forget I have it, and then I’ll click on the desktop at work or home (you bet your ass it’s on both) and squee a little bit to myself. Also, something I’ve learned this week? People at work don’t understand I’m joking when I say, “That’s my boyfriend.” or “That’s my broadway boyfriend.” Reactions I’ve gotten include: “Um…okay.” “Your broadway boyfriend? What does that mean?” “Wait, who is that? He’s your boyfriend?” and my personal favorite, “Isn’t he a little old to be your boyfriend?” I’ve worked with these people for over a year, and they still don’t know when I’m joking around? Really?
Dori and me in Times Square, moments after The Meeting. You can’t tell here, but I am absolutely elated and basically walking on air.
And the rest of it
We eventually found a place to eat and had a delightful meal. Well, okay I couldn’t really eat it, but we sat around and talked for a few hours, and laughed a LOT, and my sister told her funny skunk story (you have to hear it; it’s the funniest thing ever) and I told my Amy Sedaris mix-up story (which my sister loves) and Nicki and I briefly geeked out about Buffy and James Marsters and how his death was made so much less significant by going over to Angel…and I have to stop now or I will go on a big rant. (I had to stop myself at dinner, too.)
That night, I couldn’t sleep, and I woke up the next day feeling like shit for various reasons. I was supposed to meet up with a friend, but she missed her train. Considering I wasn’t feeling well, and had a bus to catch mid-day, it really worked out for the best. So Dori and I had a leisurely lunch and then got our bags and went to our respective buses. I actually caught an earlier bus, and was home by 7:30, so it turned out well.
Overall, it was a great weekend. I had so much fun. I got to geek out over Sex and the City, and theater, and hang out with my sister and get to know someone I’ve been speaking with over blog comments for more than a year. Oh, and also, I decided when I got home that Malcolm Gets has now entered prestigious ranks in the world of Sarah: He now joins U2 as being the only two performers I will see anytime, anywhere, for whatever money. He’s THAT good. So…hurry up and find a new project soon, Malcolm, so I can go see you again!
Video of the Day: Behind the scenes and opening night of The Story of My Life. Good stuff. I especially like Malcolm’s (Alvin’s) last song. It won’t embed, but go watch here.