Feb 262008
 

I wish I had listened to everyone when they said things like, "You’re not going to like it. You’re going to be bored" and "You’re going to be angry that you wasted your money. You won’t get anywhere near John Black" because those wise ones weren’t too far off the mark.

Henry had the good sense to park in a garage a few blocks away, where we’d only be robbed of $5 instead of the $10 that the Convention Center overlords would collect at the end of the weekend and probably use to buy a few thousand Ukrainian sex slaves, and I’m not sure I’d feel too comfortable having my cash play a part in that.

When we got inside and went upstairs to pay, I was relieved that it wasn’t as crowded as Henry warned. He always tries to play off my inherent hate for packs of humans when he’s trying to get out of stuff. Like concerts. We got in line, with only one family in front of us, to pay. I mocked dramatic sadness when I saw a sign that said Henry Winkler wasn’t going to appear due to illness, but the older man behind me was acting from the heart. "He’s not here? Then let’s go." I don’t think they ended up leaving, but the corners of his mustached lips were hanging flaccidly after that discovery.

A deep booming voice looped over the sound system, getting everyone pumped up for the Happy Days reunion (if Erin Moran and Cindy Williams constitutes a reunion), Mater from "Cars" (we made Chooch pump his fist, but he didn’t give a shit really) and Drake Hogestyn from Days of Our Lives. I was shocked to discover that I had been mispronouncing his last name for the past twenty years. Henry called me a re-re (his new name for me, thanks, I’m honored) but seriously, I’ve never heard his name spoken before; it’s not like Soap Opera Digest reads itself aloud to me.

$26 dollars later (RIPOFF) we were armed with our tickets and stumbled around blindly looking for the entrance. An older red haired lady stood next to the entrance and when she took our tickets, I pointed to the turnstile next to the large open entrance and asked, "Do we have to go through there?" She scoffed and said no, but I kind of wanted to. Turnstiles make me feel important, like my admission counts. Because it counts my admission.

Even when we crossed the testosterone-coated threshold, I still didn’t think it was all that crowded. I was somewhat amazed to see that there were regular-looking people there, but comforted when my expectations were met when I spied a steady flow of Nascar-jacketed indigents. Some of them wore bandannas on their heads and I think it tugged at Henry’s lower-class heartstrings. He used to wear bandannas, you know. There were also many men who appeared to have come there straight from huntin’.

Within the first minute, we found a small stage with a large banner that read Meet Drake Hogestyn, John Black from "Days of Our Lives" and the tugging of Henry’s arm began. There was a line of about fifty people waiting for his emergence. He was 45 minutes late. Henry took charge and said we should get the whole Mater thing out of the way.

After pushing past a bunch of orange-faced broads with hair so over-bleached it crackled and squeezing past acne-faced teenage boys looking at a table full of shiny car thingies (I think people in the know call them "car parts"), Mater loomed off to our left. Chooch was like, "Yay Cars!" but his face fell when he realized it was just Mater and not Lightning McQueen. Kind of like meeting the Cure but only Lol shows up and not Robert Smith. I wonder if Lol is excited that his name means ‘laugh out loud.’ I mean, the kid was still marginally happy and tried to crawl under the ropes while snot-faced creek-swimmers were getting photographed. We went to stand in line and soon found out that they wanted five fucking dollars for some gayblade to take a picture using a tiny point-and-shoot on a wobbly tripod. Henry, wanting to retain some semblance of the bread winner even though he makes me pay for everything because he blows his money on computer shit and truck porn, actually took it upon himself to go to an ATM and take cash out of his own account. What a fucking man.

While we were in line, a woman over at a near-by podium announced that a boy named Evan had lost his family. I looked at him, and I looked at Chooch who was desperate to break free of Henry’s clutch and visions of the next ten years polluted my once-happy thoughts. My child tried to get kidnapped about eighty times.

We ended up losing the crappy picture in the crappy cardboard frame that they gave us but it didn’t matter because we were allowed to take our pictures too, after we fed them their damn five bucks.

I love that there’s a gigantic can of Skoal hovering above Mater. Very subtle. Hey kids, love Mater? Now you can have teeth like his, too! Come get a free sample.

Around this time I took a good look around and realized that I was horribly overdressed and wasn’t showing any cleavage like all the other hotties and mulled over the idea of plopping out a boob. I hope someday my skin gets that beautiful sun-weathered crisp that they all proudly bare. I saw a lot of B.U.M. Equipment sweatshirts. It brought back memories of middle school.

I stalked this man while he cruised the entire circumference of this bad boy. (The truck, not the actual boy.) Henry caught on quickly to what I was up  to and said, "You’d make the worst spy. You look right at the person and laugh" and then he hurried up and walked away so he wouldn’t be seen carousing with me. After I took this picture, he looked at me, ducked, and said, "Oh ha-ha, I’m sorry!" I told him it was OK, and then under my breath I mumbled, "This is right where I want you, anyway. Snap."

In between all the car showcases were long tables over-stocked with various car products. My first thought was, "But it’s all car stuff." We walked past one table and I excitedly yelled, "Oh I need one of these!!" to Henry, which made the vendor look up. "You don’t even know what that does," Henry snapped. I laughed and said, "I know." Those were the days.

We made it back to the John Black stage right as he made his grand appearance. The crowd was going nuts. Kind of. Not really, but there was some applauding and few of the hardcore female fans swooned loudly. The line was much longer by this point, so instead of going to the end of it, I accepted that Chooch wouldn’t last that long standing in a line so we stood on right up front near the stage, but out of line. It was a decent trade off, because he took some time before signing autographs to field some questions. I wasn’t expecting him to be so personable and funny! Every once in awhile, I’d glance back at Henry, who was cheekily smiling like a gaybo. He tried to act like he couldn’t be bothered after that, but I know deep down he couldn’t wait to call his mommy.

It was cool seeing Drake "John Black" Hogestyn, but seriously, I’ll never go to another car show. It was dumb. Where was the nudity? Maybe at the Gun Show.

  16 Responses to “World of Wack”

  1. LOL Lol!

  2. You know, I’d love to, but I never go to concerts any more because I can never find anyone to go with, and going alone is really lame (plus a lot of hassle that might be bearable with a companion, but when it’s just me the alternative of staying home is just way too attractive). I suck, I know. I need to make some more RL friends.

    • No, I know what you mean. I missed out on a lot of good shows because I didn’t have anyone to go with. I only went to one show alone, and it sucked not having someone to share with it. The only person in Pittsburgh who will go to shows with me is Henry, but he doesn’t enjoy it and then it’s like, “Haha, that girl came with her dad.”

      :(

    • LOL your dad! Maybe if you brought Chooch you’d get in with the band like you did with Choriodos (or whatever, sorry, never heard of them before you). I think a lot of Cure fans are getting older now. Like the time I saw Peter Gabriel and the crowd was just a bunch of aging hippies.

    • If you send me your address I’ll make you an mp3 cd! You might like some of Chiodos’ stuff. And based on what I know of you, I can think of a bunch of bands that I know you’d probably like.

      email me! erinr.kelly@gmail.com

  3. What, no nudity?? You went all the way to see John Black and didn’t even get to see his… Johnson?

    So, how do you pronounce Hogestyn?

  4. Eew, John Black looks like John Mark Karr.

    *shudder*

  5. “I mocked dramatic sadness when I saw a sign that said Henry Winkler wasn’t going to appear due to illness, but the older man behind me was acting from the heart. “He’s not here? Then let’s go.”

    Turnstiles make me feel important, like my admission counts. Because it counts my admission.

    He used to wear bandannas, you know.

    Kind of like meeting the Cure but only Lol shows up and not Robert Smith. I wonder if Lol is excited that his name means ‘laugh out loud.’

    I saw a lot of B.U.M. Equipment sweatshirts. It brought back memories of middle school.
    “You’d make the worst spy. You look right at the person and laugh” and then he hurried up and walked away so he wouldn’t be seen carousing with me. After I took this picture, he looked at me, ducked, and said, “Oh ha-ha, I’m sorry!” I told him it was OK, and then under my breath I mumbled, “This is right where I want you, anyway. Snap.”

    Those are the things that are cracking me up about this post. Fucking ace!!

    So, how IS John Black’s real last name pronounced?

    • It wouldn’t have been half bad if the admission wasn’t so ridiculous! I like going to stuff that has me out of my element because I get to observe all the people that are there because they WANT to be. It’s interesting!

      I always pronounced it “HOE-GA-STIN” but it’s “HODGE-STIN” — I never would have known that so maybe it was worth it on some small level!

  6. “the older man behind me was acting from the heart. ‘He’s not here? Then let’s go.’

    oh man- that poor guy! i’d be bummed too!!!!

    i agree— what kind of car show doesn’t have nudity!??!

  7. “I was somewhat amazed to see that there were regular-looking people there”

    Translation for people outside of P-burgh:

    “the place was wall-to-wall sketchy bemulleted weirdos.”

  8. I <3 the Soap Opera Digest. I leave it on the back of the toilet and I’m pretty sure I’m the only one who reads it, but I used to get the National Enquirer and leave that in the bathroom and my best girl friend from high school would come over and bring it out of the bathroom to read it!
    I guess we’re that comfortable with each other. =)

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