Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Stephen Colbert Show update...

Well, I'm back home now after a LONG day. But all in all, it was worth it, and I had fun.
I left the office at 2pm today figuring that would give me plenty of time to get over into the city, into an area I wasn't that familiar with the area - though it was neat because it was only a few blocks away from a Bar I used to frequent often "back in the day" (some 20+ years ago!) called the "Chestnut Cabaret", lots of local bands, and some alternative bands there too. I was introduced to Reggae there and will never forget that experience. Anyway, I got sidetracked there going down memory lane... sorry...
I found parking with no problem and proceeded to try and find the Annenberg Center. It wasn't clearly marked, but I did see some papers posted up that said "Colbert report", so I eventually found my way to the right spot. There was only about 14 people in front of me at this line... cool. But, I learned this line, was just to check-in, and to get a seating number. I got #162. The auditorium held about 900 people, but there were about 100 (maybe more?) "VIP" people who got all the good seats up front. Many of these were teachers and staff of the Penn University. I saw one guy with a Nutter Hat too (Mayor Nutter) so I presume there were some political big wigs there. (Michelle Obama was a guest tonight).
So, from about 2:30 until about 6:40 I did nothing but wait in line. This was the grueling part. At one point, they let everyone into a large room, to wait for the last hour or so. This part almost drove me insane... I got stuck next to this threesome. Two guys, and one girl, and their voices and conversation was driving me up the wall. The one girl had the kind of voice that was like a chalkboard sliding down a hill of broken glass. And as if that wasn't bad enough, their conversation was pure drivel. Everything from how cool she was in 10th grade, to the three of them comparing who had the worst cell phone* of them all - without giving one example as to why! Then when the one guy started talking about clipping his nails, I almost turned around and punched him. THEN they'd have something good to talk about in the future - "Remember that time when that long haired crazy guy just punched you for no reason?"
That was one of the longest hours of my life.
But then the good part...
The show!
The theater held about 900 people and it was almost all packed! (no one sat next to me which was fine by me cause I had extra leg room), I was afraid though that one of the ushers was gonna ask me to get up and leave so a twosome could have my seat. but (knock on wood) that didn't happen. I often wonder if that happens because I scare people, or because I'm a big person and no one wants to sit next to me. Trust me though, I'm not complaining.
It was really interesting to see how the show was put together. Tonight was shot out of sequence, where we saw the band called "the roots" play. They are going to edit this clip to come after the main show tonight. all because it would have meant they would have to move the band and put Stephen's "Big C" desk where the drums were :)
What surprised me the most... Stephen is honestly having a good time up there. It wasn't all just and act, he was actually having fun. And because of that, I did too. At one point we (the audience and Stephen) were watching a previously filmed clip (on the liberty bell) and Stephen was laughing at his own jokes :) (Not in a conceited way, but because he thought they were funny).
The band... Wasn't so impressed. They did a "rock and roll" version of the national anthem, and I gotta say, that annoys the heck outta me. EVERY rock band, I'm sure has done, or will do, a Jimi Hendrix type National Anthem, and they usually end up butchering the song. Then after the big song, the lead guitar player does the old "smash the guitar" thing. Yawn. What a waste of a perfectly good instrument.
(Though it was funny to see the bass player trying to be tough by breaking his bass, and not having enough strength to slam his guitar, he basically just tossed it in the air, hoping it would break- lame ;)
It was neat to see Michelle Obama too. I gotta admit though, her voice and intonation fell right into that "every other politician" format and nearly put me to sleep. Funny how they all sort of talk the same way isnt' it? Michelle, Hilary, Obama, and even McCain... they all have the same style of public speaking.
Well, other than all the waiting, the show was a hit for me. Thanks Stephen for the free ticket, and for putting on an entertaining show!
Tip of the hat :)

One more observation...
I'd say the average age of the audience was college age (it was on a college campus after all).
As I was walking up to the main building one of the other building had a stream of students exiting... it was so comical... almost every student as soon as they hit the outside air, they had a cell phone to their ear. I was amazed. Then during the hours of waiting, I was amazed that almost every kid had their cell phone out and were either texting, talking, or playing a game on them. What did people do before cell phones? It was kinda creepy in a way.


JWD said...

You wrote: "..the kind of voice that was like a chalkboard sliding down a hill of broken glass"

That literally gave me the chills as I read it. Congratulations.

Have you seen Annie Hall lately? There's a great scene when Woody Allen interrupts a guy pontificating in line in front of him at a movie theater. Hilarious. And may be a bit cathartic given your experience last night. :)

We haven't watched the video yet, but will whether we're able to discern your presence or not!

What a cool thing to get to go to the show. (By the way, have you tasted Colbert's Ben & Jerry's ice cream flavor yet? YUM!)

cyen said...

Thanks jwd :)
I thought that little analogy was a good one too. Sry for the chills ;)

I don't think I've ever seen annie hall! I'm not a big fan of woody.
But, now you have me curious, so I'll have to add it to my netflix queue.

Ice Cream... I don't usually partake in that one either :) But I'll keep an eye out for it and maybe give it a try.
Hmm, maybe an annie hall movie and ice cream night?
I don't even know what annie hall is about!? :)

JWD said...

ooh, yes! We can do it here. I actually own Annie Hall.

...wait... it might be on vhs... maybe I need to update! :)