This week, I spend the weekend in a Chevy Tahoe, change my name to Uber, operate in a COMBINED EIGHT hours of sleep and navigate the strange streets of this city.
Friday (Continued from here):
After driving from Conneticut in the aforementioned Tahoe, meeting Nikki Bella and sneaker gawd Masch, I do my best Uber impression and drop off everyone AND then pick up new gear.
I start a group text for the ages and plan for the next day. Always have to think of the future at least professionally. Personally, again, walking shitshow.
I then head back home where I circle like a large shark in this beast of a vehicle. I accidentally look like a fed doing laps in this car.
I find a parking super late at night and zombie shuffle home.
I learn that I really enjoy nice fancy cars, good music and wonder if I’d be your favorite Uber driver.
Early morning for back to back shoots.
I’ve named the Tahoe Brenda and she and I drive off to Brooklyn for the finale of a micro opus; the pirate black yeezys.
As it turns out, the super lousy and much maligned Adidas Reserve app blessed a few people with a pair of expensive Roshe run water shoes.
Again. The entire team is wearing Nikes.
We’re awful at branding strategy.
We knock that out and climb back into Brenda for a drive out to Long Island for the Billboard Hot 100 Festival.
The drive out is facinating though. We’re cruising through Queens in all its multi leveled confusing street named business before its transformed into wide suburban wilderness. We wind up in Roosevelt Field Mall for meal and really, it’s like walking into the mall from Clueless.
My fat ass gets a Charley’s steaks sandwich and I savor every second with it because I know it’s going to be the last meal we have for a while.
Jones Beach is a big lovely piece of sand and water on the edge of the madness that is New York. Breathtaking. All that sun, wide open sky, spotty cell service, no shade, nothing for miles…no actually it’s hell adjacent. We pull to the Nikon Theater (we shoot on Canon cameras and glass by the way.) and park Brenda. I make long range Hail Mary lobs for interviews with big names and know they’ll fall very short of their mark but sometimes you just gotta try it y’know? I’m now in that elite circle of people who’s had Jason Derulo (you sang his name admit it) management team say, “Nah.”
We divide and conquer; shooting everything, slowly wilting under the August sun while every kind of could be, will be, top 40 music blares everywhere.
I get to film Halsey (weeps)
Some Betty Who (weeps again)
Micheal Braun (EDM tears)
Jason Derulo (because my mom is weirdly a fan)
Interview Trinidad James (don’t believe me? There’s a video. just watch)
We get an interview Natalie La Rosa and Justine Skye.
I film Lil Wayne’s performance.
Here’s where it gets to be funny though. During Wayne’s set, I mean, you have to know his music to get this but, just…picture a front row of white girls, chanting, sweaty excited about life suddenly yelling Wanye lyrics.
I’m with a crew of African American dudes and we’re all standing there looking like Patrick Star completely stunned. We knew it was gonna happen but to actually bear witness to darling Becky, Lisa, Heather and Stephanie (names I pulled out of my butt) screaming
Uh, real nigga fuck these haters
These hoes got pussies like craters
Can’t treat these hoes like ladies, man!
Pussy, money, weed, codeine
She say my dick feel like morphine
I hope my name taste like sardines to these niggas
She wake up, eat this dick
Call that breakfast in bed
I mean, “Bitches Love Me (Good Kush and Alcohol)” Is totally a deep piece of music but we stopped in our tracks and stared for a good minute before realizing we had to leave.
We do interviews on the beach and are promptly eaten alive by the adorable ants and bugs that live on the beach and crawl out at sunset because why not? It’s summer.
We get our faces melted by Axwell and Ingrosso which, if I may, was almost a religious experience. I forgot how much I truly love house and EDM music. There’s something beautiful in computers and synths making you feel something the same way real strings can. We pile up into a long media line and prep to shoot the last act of the night.
Remember that line of screaming girls? Still there. All deaf from Axwell and Ingrosso but they’re holding strong and immediately complaining about the press arriving in the front for photos. Guys, if ever you’re at a show, enjoying your night, drinking, laughing smoking and just being you in the moment, don’t bitch about or at the people working a show; we are in a place you want to be and we can go anywhere. You’ll live if my body blocks your view for ten whole minutes. Besides, watch the stage, not me.
Anyways, he’s great live and performed “Crew Love” while we were up there.
I get it, it’s music and people are allowed to do and sing however but it’s SO FUCKING WARPED when twelve year olds are screaming ‘THERE’S A ROOM FULLA N*GGAS WHATCHU BOTHERIN’ ME FOOOORRRR’ with conviction.
In anycase, we stick around for another two and beat the traffic.
I venture deep into Queens on personnel delivery drops on some Uber meets GTA mission level stuff, wall eyed, exhausted and trying to figure out how to process the day.
I park outside Waffle’s building, figuring reckless charm is all one needs to make things work. I text and send a hilarious video of myself bopping around in the car and receive a text that is both mixed and positive. “You should’ve text me earlier, it’s too late now.”
By the time I arrive home, it’s well after one am I’ve been up for 18 hours and not really fatigued so much as just…
Recovery sort of happens. I still have the boat I spent at least 20 minutes battling for parking (seriously, it’s competitive as all hell) manage to park the boat and work out a few things. I get pizza for everyone because pizza forever and wind up taking some home in a box that’s almost novelty in its size. I climb into the car again, mutter ‘One Last Ride’ on some Vin Diesel shit, place the box in the passenger side and roll out.
I will now add pizza delivery service to my list of things I can do.
So many hats.
The boat goes back to the rental service and as I leave Brenda, grateful for her service, dependability and rear camera system, I’m greeted by one of the clerks who walks around the truck with big wide eyes.
“How’d you like the car?” she asks.
“It’s great. A little much but I had a good time.”
“Is it the one you ordered?”
(I didn’t order it, it just popped up on me) “Yep.”
I watch as she climbs in and turns the car on to check the settings. “Oh it’s like, you didn’t do anything with it.”
*in my head* You’re right I didn’t do anything but shuttle people and gear around for three days. I didn’t sit in it for awhile blasting music and staring out at the traffic ahead of me wondering about my place in the universe, if I should pick up new comics this week and if Coldplay will go on another world tour. “Oh I kept it clean before bringing it back.”
“I appreciate that!”
*in my head* so do I get a break on this discount or nah?
I shuffle my exhausted ass back to the train, which, given how much driving I’ve been doing feels incredibly weird. I’m one of those assholes with a box of pizza on the train and I can feel everyone judging me; I’m holding the box correctly. Cold pizza or not, you do NOT under any circumstances hold pizza under your arm like a surfboard. I sit down with this stupid box in my lap and just think about how my life as flip turned upside down. I can be as tired as I want but being broke is even more exhausting.
The interesting thing is as I continue to work and get farther away from my last self (the struggling to make ends meet freelancer me) I find that I’m still trying to figure out which me I am now. I believe that we are born and reborn over and over again, given different lives to live in the moment we walk into that timeline and this timeline is almost new, the entire experience unknown and I can’t parallel it with anything I’ve been through so far. I don’t want to be an asshat but it’s so strange and I guess its kinda cool that way. Scary but cool.
It’s funny because given how eventful this weekend was, Monday feels like another random ass day where things happen. We had cookies so, that’s always a good time. I actually leave my house at a decent hour and spent some time with my mom before holing up in my lab to write and stare at Monday Night Raw.
Mostly because I hadn’t seen Nikki’s sneakers in action.
Fun fact? We’re the same height (5’7) and shoe size (8) BUT definitely not that good looking.
Also fun fact? She wore the sneakers again.
A delightful flurry of activity happens and yours truly basically does her very best to keep up with the everything going on. I’m overseeing a project on a group, The Bushwick Collective and as it turns out, there are great supporters and even bigger obstacles they are facing. You can be so good at your job that other people want to take it from you. It’s a big piece and with everything going on…well…I hope it’s straight napalm and melts faces.
I randomly text Waffle and ask if dinner is an option.
We have a quiet dinner where Waffle rails on everything happen while I politely shovel pasta into my face hole and try my best not to stare lovingly at that face.
It’s kinda embarrassing how big a loser I am.
I wind up picking up some CDs: Florence + The Machine, The Weeknd, Halsey and Tove Lo. I have all them in digital format but The Weeknd and Halsey were ill begotten advances because physical stores haven’t caught up with the digital Friday releases…haha. fight me.
A day off doesn’t mean you’re actually allowed to unplug and it DEFINITELY doesn’t mean life won’t throw many nasty curveballs. I’m told to continue to persevere but that’s easy to say when you’ve been getting square meals, sleep and feel appreciated.
Waffle needed to get some dental work done and so, me and my white knight ass volunteered to meet her and shuttle her around.
I finish my book, Shadowshaper, and watch as Waffle emerges from the room bleary eyed and puffy. Extractions are the least fun thing ever. We spend the early afternoon shuffling between pharmacies and I endure increasing levels of grump bitch before getting an apology text.
I’m running errands because taking a break isn’t a thing that I know how to do.
I spend the day with Waffle and basically do the worst job of covering up my heart eyes.
It winds up being a good day.