There comes a point in everyone's life when you realize you've made it. I recently experienced such a moment. In a scene my future biographers will no doubt reconstruct in the glorious colors of autumn, I found myself standing in Kiki Vandeweghe's kitchen, swigging cold Pabst Blue Ribbon with Ernie Bjorkman. Each sip tasted more like victory than the last, and I found myself thinking, "This is how everything is supposed to be."
And then a Black Eyed Pea stole my girl.
Here's how it came down. Over the past few months, apparently there have been what experts refer to as "hurricanes" in or around the United States. According to reliable sources, these "hurricanes" have had a disastrous effect on a region called the "Gulf Coast," which I think is off Nova Scotia. I really had no idea about any of this, what with the baseball playoffs and that Foley's Red Apple Sale and all, so when a colleague asked if I wanted to attend a benefit for the Rock Works Foundation that's helping rebuild this "Gulf Coast," I just blinked at him in confusion, like a CU student in a bookstore.
Black Eyed Peas
"Do you want to go see the Black Eyed Peas do a private performance at Kiki Vandeweghe's mansion?" he patiently elaborated.
But of course.
Walking into the Vandemansion, I felt more out of place than a CU student in a bookstore, my Sony My First Beard patchily strewn across my face, my frayed and tattered blue jeans -- and without my trusty companion lemur, who recently parted ways with me in a manner far too ugly to discuss here. Good luck in Hollywood, Marshall, you fucking asshole.
Men with LoDo haircuts sipped martinis while their female counterparts scanned the crowd for Nuggets, who would appear momentarily from the VIP party in the basement, shake the right hands, snap the right photos, then lumber back below. I clearly did not belong, but I couldn't help but want to. Before my very eyes, Denver's B-list celebrities were laid out like a veritable all-you-can-eat buffet. There, by the window, was WB2's Asha Blake! Over there, by the couch, could that really be Channel 4's Molly Hughes? In the same room as me? And lo, by the bar, gossip columnists Penny Parker and Bill Husted! What juicy tidbits were they gathering? Ha, ha, what fun!
"Adam!" my colleague snapped me out of my starstruck trance. "The caterers have PBR in the kitchen."
Which is how I found myself cheersing with Ernie Bjorkman, who looked tan and newsman-like, as if he'd just slept off a bender inside the sun.
"PBR!" he said to us, as he headed back into the party, carrying a can of the Blue Ribbon.
"PBR," I agreed.
"Hell, yeah," my colleague said, giving Bjorkman the devil horns, which he accepted uncertainly before disappearing.
Then it was go-time.
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Before the white folks in the crowd could say "I don't understand hip-hop," the Black Eyed Peas were on the Vandeweghes' staircase, getting it started and getting it retarded in there, with spastic dance moves up and down the stairs. Looking like two J. Crew catalogues and one L.L. Bean magazine had vomited all over them, the Peas ripped through several of their more well-known tracks while balding men smiled and awkwardly tried to dance and thought, "I swear to God, if my Becky brings a guy like this home from Kenyon" The only person in the place who seemed to truly grasp the music was Peggy Vandeweghe, who danced on the landing of her staircase with the expertise of a video diva.
After the performance, I sat outside on the patio and let the alcohol I'd imbibed flirt with a comely young lass. The mixture of PBRs and whatever concoction the martini bartender had made for me after I told him I wasn't really a martini kind of guy and he looked at me with a smile that said "Uh, no shit" was working. Because when a few friends came by to check on her, she responded, "Don't worry, he's cool." Which is sort of true.
But then who should come strolling our way but one of the Black Eyed Peas -- you know, the long-haired, Native American-looking one. He struck up a conversation with the two of us, but from the get-go, it was obvious that I hadn't piqued his curiosity, despite the Sony My First Beard. It soon became clear that two was company, What's So Funny's a crowd, but before I could gracefully excuse myself, that uppity Black Eyed Pea had walked off with the comely lass.
I thought about chasing after him all John-Wayne-in-The-Searchers style. I thought about how I could yell that the Black Eyed Peas should coach a clinic on the most effective way of selling out. But in the end, I wound up doing nothing. I just stood there blinking, like a CU student in a bookstore