Wednesday, April 4, 2012

My Evening with Barack

Yes. I know.

Well, it's true.

What follows is the e-mail to a friend I got out the day after:

Went out to the ABC carpet bash for obama last nite. Everybody either dressed to the nines or 8.5s, w/exception of the scurvy rich who look like bag ladies and grab the samosas off the hors d'ouvres tray in handfuls and follow the champagne bottles until they get a refill. I would say glitterati except that a lot of the heels were only half, so maybe glimmeratti. And it was sold out too. Hard to believe that I could ever attend anything exclusive again.

Yes, I know. How did the old bear and mi espousa mousa get an invite? We ponied up the big bucks. She feels that this is the last chance to save America (and why? she is not a citizen, you know) and that it is more important to re-elect the president than go on vacation. (For real.) (Yeah. like we had any time, either.) Her biggest panic--and I’ve never heard her say this before, just to show you how utterly theatrical it is--was: I have nothing to wear! (Really. you have no idea how comic this is.)

But as marathons go, this was the "iron man" of shindigs. Literally; you got digs in the shins, insteps, elbows in ribs, shoulder butts...the lady next to me had this purse tucked under her arm that had the consistency of a leather cuirass, and held it high and tight to the body, like a fullback heading for the end zone. See, it was all about jockeying for position. And being that Yoshiko's usual view of proceedings such as these is should blades and backs, I determined to get her to shove her way as far front as possible. It worked but required that I not push myself any further. As a result, we only had intermittent contact for the next few hours. Because that was the way to get through it: stand and wait. Of course they had intros by Russell Simmons and Deepak chopra, but the funnest stuff was this guy aziz (from a TV show called "parks and recreation", I think) doing a routine commenting on the gal who did the deaf-signing for the event and what certain hand signals were used to designate certain ethnic groups. ("What is that?" mimes gesture of sweeping arm movement from side up to end with a thumb placed in the center of forehead. "That’s Indian?!?!" and says it over and over again--funnier than it sounds--then asking, "so what's Chinese?" sees her making this sort of slash across her throat. "Oh that's so racist!" this is what we call "meta"-humor: that which comments on itself. Kind of like "30 rock", so I gather.) And then the roots came out and jammed with Ben folds and it felt a lot like some really cool hybrid of, say, EWF x'ed/w/the Doobie Bros. when Michael MacDonald was fronting them: mellow yet bumpin'.

So it was like almost 9pm when he finally takes the stage. Pure stump speech golden hits but, yeah, it was sort of transcendent. I made sure Yoshiro knew to stick out her hand when he went by and she did at least get a handshake. But what she said later is what I meant by weird. "It was so strange. I couldn't believe it wasn't television."

Soak that one up for a while, eh?