A day out

Apr. 9th, 2005 09:21 pm
akawil: Powerpuff Wil (Default)
[personal profile] akawil
[livejournal.com profile] ladymondegreen is in Boston this weekend, so I'm home by myself. Usually when I'm home alone I end up sitting around all weekend not doing anything, but that seemed like a bad idea, so I decided to get out today for a change.

Despite not getting to bed until 5:00 am last "night", having stayed out too late at Games Club, I woke up about 10:00 and wasn't able to get back to sleep. I decided to make the most of things, and got up.

The cast of Veronica Mars was doing a signing at 1:00 at Macy's today; there was an announcement to that effect during Tuesday's airing. [livejournal.com profile] ladymondegreen was disappointed in not being able to go, but encouraged me to go instead.

Due to the PATH train deciding to sit in the tunnel under the river and not go anywhere, I didn't get up to Macy's until almost exactly 1:00. When I got there, I saw an absolutely enormous line outside. This worried me a bit, until I asked the people there what it was for: apparently Macy's was also hosting a cattle call for America's Top Model today.

So I go inside, and I ask a guard there where the Veronica Mars cast event is. Unfortunately, I think all of the question that got into his head were the parts "television show" and "where", as he then told me "ninth floor".

I started taking the escalators upstairs. When I got to the third floor, I saw a bunch of people lined up, and Veronica Mars stuff playing on a TV. However, the publicity flaks entertaining the people in line were handing out America's Top Model DVDs as prizes for trivia questions, so I assumed that the TV screen was a cross-promotion, and decided to continue to head up to the ninth floor.

(As an aside: Macy's has some really cool old wooden escalators; I imagine they're the originals from when the store was first built. Despite having lived in New York for almost 15 years now, I'd never been in Macy's before.)

When I got up to the ninth floor, though, it was quickly pretty clear that everyone in the line was a) young, female, and too skinny, and b) holding release forms for America's Top Model, so I pretty quickly concluded I was in the wrong place. I asked someone else who worked for the store, and they directed me back down to the third floor.

I scouted out the line on this floor, noting that it contained people who were of mixed gender (even if still majority female) and who actually were shaped like real humans, and indeed discovered the cast of Veronica Mars sitting at a table at one end of the line, being interviewed by the UPN 9 news team. So I went to try to find the other end of the line.

This took a while. The line by this point stretched most of the way across Macy's, which is to say most of the way from Fifth to Sixth Avenue. I got there just in time, as about twenty people after me, they closed the line.

Just ahead of me in line was a nice NYU film student named Jared (I think), and we talked some as we waited for the line to slowly crawl its way across the store. On the way, I discovered that, indeed, the publicity flaks were handing out America's Top Model DVDs — I suppose to promote another UPN show, or possibly because they had a bunch of DVDs in stock that no one would want to actually buy. I actually won one, for successfully identifying Weevil's real name. I now have a DVD I'm even more dubious about owning than The Toxic Avenger, something I would have thought unlikely.

After about an hour and a half, we made it up to the front of the line; they handed us a little card with a picture of the core cast, and then we walked across and chatted with each of them for about ten seconds each. Sort of an anti-climax, I must say.

I did manage to find out, from Francis Capra (Weevil) I think, that they've finished filming for the season. Capra's begun to let his hair grow out; I don't know if it's an effect of the hair, how they make him up for the show, or just acting, but he seemed a lot softer in person than Weevil does on the show. The rest of the actors looked basically the same as they do on the show.

The one interesting thing I managed to say was to complement Enrico Colantoni (Keith Mars) on the contrast between his character on this show and his portrayal of Mathesar in Galaxy Quest. He said it was a bit schizophrenic for him.

Once that finished (as we departed they gave us DVDs with which apparently contain the first episode and some actor interviews; I'm looking forward to watching it), I said goodbye to Jared and headed out for what I'd hoped would be the second part of my day.

The Museum of Modern Art has been having a Christopher Guest film festival this past week, and this evening he and the other two guys from Spinal Tap and The Folksmen are doing a live musical performance. So I headed up to MoMA. When I asked at the desk about it, though, the guy looked at me with some incredulity and said "that was sold out at 7:30 this morning." I suppose I shouldn't have been so surprised; it was featured on the first page of the New York Times weekend section yesterday. Still, disappointing.

So instead I decided to head down to Rockefeller Center, another New York landmark I'd never visited; this was even sillier of me than never visiting Macy's, since I've just finished and greatly enjoyed Daniel Okrent's Great Fortune, a very good history of the place. I bought some lunch, and sat down to eat it in what I believe are called the Channel Gardens, between the Maison Française and the British Empire Building.

I wandered about the Rock Center shopping promenade a bit, then headed down Fifth Avenue. Before she left, [livejournal.com profile] ladymondegreen had given me a card she got on the street to potentially win a free trip to Scotland. You had to scan it in a bar code reader at Grand Central Terminal, so I headed down there (after a stop at Coliseum Books, where I picked up a copy of Seize the Daylight, a history of Daylight Saving Time).

The thing at Grand Central was a tourist exhibit sponsored by the Scottish Tourist Board. Unfortunately, we didn't win a free trip to Scotland, but it was in general pretty interesting. They had William Wallace's sword, on loan from some museum in Scotland, and a cask formerly used for Glenfiddich which you could stick your nose in and smell the whiskey. There was also a musical performance by a group called the Peatbog Faeries, an instrumental folk-fusion band from Skye. Some pretty cool stuff.

After that, I grabbed some dinner, and headed home. All in all, definitely a more fun time than I would have had sitting around at home all day.
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