When I first booked the trip to LA to attempt to see the Police, I knew it was going to be a long shot. This was like once upon a daydream. Out of all the stories of Police, my favorite is the show that took place at Last Chance in Poughkipsie, NY. I knew this would probably be my Last Chance (pun intended) to ever get to see the Police in a venue such as this. And after advising Nicole and Jean that I wasn't the third or fourth winner, I admit I was a bit disappointed. This would be the first time I wouldn't get to attend a cool Police related event such as this with her (which I think would have been the fifth time we'd have gotten to do something so cool). I was disappointed for all of two seconds and then I emailed Jean and Nicole back and decided what the hell, what did they think about me coming out there even though I hadn't won a pass to see the Rehearsals. They both talked me into it as well as several of my co-workers whom I advised I might be taking a few days off on short notice (thank god I have one of the greatest supervisors in the world). So, the rest of Friday afternoon was spent snagging last minute deals off the internet I lucked out pretty good as I usually do in these situations.
However, perhaps as a harbinger of things to come, one of my co-workers came down with sinus infection that left him feeling nauseaous and wanting to just lie down and school. On Saturday, the same ailment descended upon. Despite this potential hindrance in my plans, i decided to go ahead. My flight was out of BWI (about 80 miles from my house) and I knew when I would be coming back I'd likely be facing a major winter storm, so I decided to to take an Amtrak train from Quantico, Va (about 15 miles from my house) straight to BWI and spend a night at a hotel near the airport. I got a last minute deal via Hotwire and I learned that you can use Paypal to pay for Hotwire bookings which I thought was brilliant. Anyway, the train idea it worked out to be a great plan. The train actually had lay over at Union Station in Washington DC for an hour and a half and I was actually able to get decent sleep which I desperately needed. The rest of the ride was pleasant and I took some Benadryl before hitting the sack. If only I had gotten sick on any other day.
I woke up on Sunday morning feeling worse than I did on Saturday evening, thinking I was going to be the first to fall over in the air less than perfect. I could barely stand up and thought for sure i was going to go into convulsions and pass out. I only got about 4 hours of sleep after having suffered from insomina the entire week before. I was still determined to make the damned trip. I could barely keep my eyes open on the shuttle ride to the airport and was able to change my seats to window seats on both legs of the trip so I could get some sleep on the way out.
Fortunately, I didn't have any medical distress on the airplane and almost miraculously, the malady had departed as fast as it had struck me and i felt 110% better. Fortunately, I had enough time between my flight and Jean's arrival that I was able to check into my hotel and relax a bit and then take a quick walk to the convenience store because I burned for a Diet Coke and a cheap pair of sunglasses to replace the ones I'd lost somewhere in the airport in Charlotte through which I caught my connecting flight to LAX. Some protesters were protesting something out in front of the hotel and there was some conference going on in the hotel but I was too tired to even care what the issue may have been. Sometimes living the life like a man in a suitcase can be exhausting..
I made contact with Nicole who had met with Maggie and checked into their room in Beverly Hills a few blocks away from the Backstage Cafe. The plan was for us www.stewartcopeland.net people to meet up with sting.com people for dinner and watch the Police grammy performance at the Backstage Cafe.
Jean called me after she checked into her hotel located just a few blocks away from mine. This was the first time I'd spoken to Jean, and within ten seconds of the conversation commencing it was like we'd been lifelong friends. It had been like the first time I met Kim and Nicole as well. This confirmed my first suspicions that this trip was going to be rocking awesome. Jean and I talked practically non-stop during the entire trip to the Backstage Cafe. I tend to be a bit quiet and shy around people I hardly know when I first meet them, so this was a rarity and I knew there was something magical about Jean.
At the Backstage Cafe, we met up with Nicole, Maggie, and some sting.com folks who were all a blast to hang out with. They are just as cool as the stewartcopeland.net folks. I couldn't think of anywhere else I'd in the world I'd rather have been that evening. Barrett and Chandra were there as well and all felt right in the world when I got my scrumptious Buffalo Backstage Burger and dipped my fries into the heavenly Backstage Cafe sauce and I knew Ian's spirit was in the air. Everyone seemed to think I'd have a good shot at getting into the show the next day despite not having won a ticket beforehand.
Anyway, when we got to the car, Jean couldn't find the ticket to exit the parking garage near the Backstage We were so excited neither of us paid attention to what happened after she got it from the booth attendant when we entered. And I was pretty lit when we left, so I forgot exactly how she got out of paying the full amount instead of the two dollar rate we were supposed to pay, but I think she had to fill out a piece of paper and give them her license.
|Jean and I met up early the next day and Jean decided to avoid the 405 and instead used La Cienega as our main conduit to get to Sunset Boulevard , with which I totally agreed after the bad experiences Nicole and I had with the 405 when we'd come to LA last year for the LA premiere of Everyone Stares. It turned out to be a great idea and we made good time. All the sting.com folks, Maggie and Nicole had already arrived and started an unofficial line across the street from the Whisky A- Go-go where they'd used sharpies to assign number positions in line. I was 8 and Jean was 9. Several other sting.com folks showed up, but as I watched the pretty tight security work across the street, I began to come to the realization that my chances of getting in were starting to drop precipitiously and i thought I was going to be driven to tears. But at the same time, I was having so much fun it did not feel the like the world was running down, but Nicole, Jean and all the other folk made the best of what was still around with the slim hopes that i was going to get into the club. About 9:00 a clock we started to make our approach by crossing the street to the club, walking in the long gone footsteps of others who must have made similar approaches at this historical venue.|
The view on the road of the Larry Flynt building
And the moral of the story is, if you're gonna use an internet cafe for your porn, be sure to close all your windows when you're done!
Then Jean and I dropped Nicole off at the airport with a few departing hugs. Jean and I next hit a nearby cyber cafe and caught up on the posts. Jean uncovered some personal porn that looks like was left behind on the computer she was using from a previous customer that was just hilarious. I couldn't help but think someone was updating their myspace webpage and forget to erase the evidence they left behind.|
Soon after, it was time to go back to my hotel room (a sleazy Hilton. Stewart was right, they suck) so Jean dropped me off and more hugs ensued. We all really had a wonderful time and it turned out to be even greater than we had originally imagined, even poor ol' me. Nicole and Jean were right that I should have come along, even though I was ticketless.
After i got back to my hotel room , I caught the last 45 minutes of "24" before I went to bed and one of the villains this season has the last name Gradenko.
With one breath, with one note, you will know Synchronicty.