So when I left off, I had gotten my green ticket for Round Three.
This time, I had two days in between-- two days when I managed to develop a sore throat, thanks to the beginning of allergy season, and didn't eat a damn thing except chicken soup.
The guys at work kept giving me a hard time, the motherfuckers, because I couldn't tell anyone what was going on. But it was all good, and Friday night, I went back to Philly, where I met up with my mom, dad, and liret who apparently got lost crossing the street.
We went to dinner at this amazing restaurant called Moshulu, where I COULD NOT EAT DAIRY, and on the way there, we saw Nigel, who totally pretended not to see me, haha. Anyway, then like half the production staff was in the restaurant, which was kind of funny.
We leave, go to the hotel, I practice all my songs, then go to sleep. Get up at 6, and pretty much everything is the same as on Wednesday, except that this time when they line us up on the wall, I have MY FAMILY AND JESS with me. We wait on the wall with this kid from NYC who didn't have any family with him, and behind this girl who had the most amazingly snobby attitude ever.
They let us in, I go through the sign-in process, and then they sit us back down in rows like we were in on Wednesday, except that this time...there are only 46 of us. FORTY SIX. They had people going on Sunday, as well, but people were saying the Sunday group was slightly smaller. So. Holy fuck. Because we were all expecting 150-200 people to have made it this far.
I see some people I remember from previous, most especially Matt, who is mortified that his whole family is there including several obnoxious nieces and nephews.
I am also seated next to a drag queen. A drag queen who sings in a church.
This day is, well...there's a lot less I Love Rock n' Roll being played, mainly. I am the fifteenth person to go, I think? We have assigned seats again. Anyway, they first call us out to do a series of different televised interviews. Meg from the previous day does my first interview. She's awesome and I enjoy talking to her a lot. We banter about clothes, I tell her I brought my pirate stuff, and she gets really excited and tells me she wants to film me in pirate clothes so she'll get me later. I give shoutouts to liret, phuck, and all of hogwarts_elite when I have a chance to.
I do another interview, with a woman named Hope, who is also awesome. I think I gave a couple more shoutouts with her, but I'm getting fuzzy between who I tried to and who I actually got to give them to. Hope makes me jump up and down a lot. She asks me why I should be the next American Idol. Since I really don't think I should be, I have a hard time with this question and say something about how there's never been an American Idol who is a total geek.
Then I get called out to do a series of posed still photographs. The guy who does the still photographs keeps trying to get me to do sexy poses. I can't do sexy at. freaking. all. So I do some silly shit for him. As soon as I get out, I wish I had done a Junior Birdman pose. Oh well.
Anyway, I sit around a while longer while the local news comes to interview people, and Meg comes in and asks me to come out with my pirate clothes. I change into pirate clothes, get filmed, change back.
Around NOON, the celebrity judges get there. Meanwhile, Ryan Seacrest-- who is awesome in person, by the way-- has been there all morning-- not as long as us, but since maybe 10 or so, and you can kind of tell he's irritated that the judges are taking their sweet time. We hear murmurs about how Paula is teeny and Simon is much smaller in person, but we don't see them.
FINALLY, they start calling people in to see the judges.
I don't know what time they finally call my row, but it's taken for-fucking-ever and I think out of the ten people in front of me, they've gotten through five and picked one. A girl who apparently had already been to Hollywood in previous years...TWICE...and cut in the first round in Hollywood. At this point, I'm becoming very aware of how important this is to the other people there. Whereas I'm there for the ride. Which makes me feel kind of bad. There are several people there who've been to Hollywood before, which is crazy to me. Some of them had auditioned in multiple cities this year and were turned down at several auditions in other cities. And people who've been coached specifically for this. About half of them are professional or semi-pro singers, or voice majors. And I'm like, shit, I started practicing three weeks ago?
Not in a worried way, more in a haha ironic way. So I'm waiting, waiting...and they let through three people in a row. Wow. Two of them were pretty cool, one of them is this blonde girl who is from Oregon and is a cage fighter and is a bit snobby but GORGEOUS...but she had one of those attitudes like she knows she's gorgeous. One of them is a girl who is a sweetheart and a guitar player and into classic rock and I was thrilled for her.
Oh, before I go that far, I should tell you about my favorite auditioner-- this guy I talked to at the first auditions. He was from Delaware, and came because a friend of his desperately wanted to try out. He was tagging along. He decided oh, what the hell, he could make an ass of himself and audition, and as long as he was making an ass of himself, he might as well dress up in THE METAL PRINCESS LEIA BIKINI HIS FRIENDS MADE FOR HIM AS A JOKE.
His audition goes like this: He walks in. Thirty seconds later, he walks out and says "They told me to wax my chest and come back next year."
So we get to the girl one ahead of me. At this point, the judges have already stopped for breaks twice. Ryan has been bitching openly about Simon's inexplicable need to change his shirt and how Simon is incapable of working for 20 minutes straight and he's getting really irritated with them-- particularly Simon.
We see the Judges. Simon is ignoring all the contestants, Paula is polite and smiles and waves-- and really is tiny. And Simon is definitely not over 5'8". He's much scrawnier than he appears on TV. Randy is EXACTLY like he appears on TV and is pretty awesome and chats with everyone.
And the judges decide they need to take an hour for lunch.
Which is fine by me, because I get to eat soup and practice some more and I am sounding pretty awesome, if I do say so myself.
After lunch, Simon decides he has to change his shirt again, much to the chagrin of Ryan.
The girl ahead of me, who had been a professional singer for seven years and was a finalist on the show Popstars? She goes in.
She comes out. No ticket. Now, I heard her. She was fucking amazing and incredibly sweet. But, she says, the judges didn't like her song choices.
Ryan sends me off, and is really cool.
I go in. Everyone is incredibly friendly, except for Simon, who is not being particularly snarky so much as off in his own little world and unattentive. Paula, believe it or not, is doing the interviews, and she is lovely and not at all the way she comes off on television (read: not stoned off her ass).
And Randy and Paula...just keep talking to me. No singing. They are just chatting. Asking all kinds of questions about me, about what I do, about what I've done. Then Paula looks at my resume and sees the bit about Playgirl. And they start asking me questions about my job there.
Finally, Simon chimes in. "What on earth was that like?" he asks.
"I pretty much looked at naked men all day," I say. "It was the most boring job I've ever had. It's probably a lot like your jobs, actually."
And then Randy and Paula... KEEP TALKING TO ME. Finally, Simon is like, okay, we kind of have to make her sing, guys. So what are you singing?
I tell him my song. FINALLY SOMEONE HAS HEARD OF IT. Simon is like, oh, okay, interesting choice.
And I start singing. And about three lines in...I start singing lyrics that aren't even in any way right. It's not even forgetting lyrics. It's COMPLETELY WRONG LYRICS.
It's like, wtf, brane?
And Randy is shaking his head, looking disappointed, and I almost stopped and was like, okay, you know what, we all know I fucked up, would you like me to do something else or just call it quits because I knew I sucked, but I figured they're doing this for TV and they'll tell me when they want me to stop. They let me go on for quite a while and finally Simon tells me to stop.
And Simon asked me a question, and I don't remember what he asked, but I was like, "look, I really respect your opinion, and I almost always agree with you on the show, and if you say I sucked, I'll know I sucked."
And he kind of raises and eyebrow and is like "Well, what do you think I'm going to say?"
And I said, "That I sucked, because I did."
And he was like. "Yeah, pretty much. Did you really think you'd be the next American Idol singing that?"
And I was like, "Well, I hoped so, but I also wasn't intending to fuck up the whole audition."
And they all kind of laughed and I thanked them for listening to me and was like "I'm sorry I messed up, but I really appreciate the opportunity to sing for you all, it's a real honor."
And Simon looked sort of surprised and said, "Likewise."
And then Randy said, "Hey, can you get me a job at Playgirl?"
And I said, "In a minute! I don't know about you, though, Simon, sorry."
And Randy started cheering.
So then I walk out of the room, and Ryan is like "It looks like we have a..."
And I give him the thumbs down.
And Ryan is like, "WHAT? WHAT? But they all loved you! Randy said you were his girl!"
Which is funny, because he's on headset, so they're all telling him shit through the audition.
And I said, "Nah, that's because I said I could get him a job in porn. I totally sucked. I messed up my lyrics."
And Ryan still looked baffled, because it seemed pretty obvious that the whole staff loved me and they weren't expecting me to fuck up.
Then they make you go to this other section to sign out. And again, the women there are like, okay, we need you to wait here.
And I was like, "I thought I only needed to wait if I got a ticket?"
And they ALSO looked shocked that I didn't get one. So there was kind of something going on there? It seemed like there was.
Anyway, then I did my debriefing interview with Hope, who was still very cool, and then we went out for lunch AND I GOT TO EAT CHEESE and then we got GELATO AGAIN and then we went home! And I had all of Sunday to go boating in Mattituck and yay!
So it was pretty awesome all together, even if I may end up getting made a fool of on national tv.