Sherry's Rockapella Trip Report
Lancaster Performing Arts Center--October 26, 2001
I picked up MJ at the Ontario Airport (late--sorry, MJ), and we had just eaten our doughnuts and bought an eyeglass repair kit when Monica called from the Hilton. I had requested Monica to take a shuttle there after she landed at LAX, because that airport is just a nightmare these days, due to heightened security. I was wondering what she looked like, since it had been 7 months since our first and only meeting, but, luckily, I recognized her face instantly. She and I accompanied MJ to the nail salon, and we laughed at the outfits on the models in the fashion magazine. We all marveled at MJ's fabulous french-tipped nails, and at a low cost, too! Yay!
The three of us chilled out at my house and talked about 'Pella. Ang called and we talked clothes because I couldn't decide whether or not to wear my leather pants. It pretty much depended on how fat I felt.
We all got ready and beautiful (I decided to wear the leather, yes), and left for our trek to Lancaster. Thankfully, we didn't hit much traffic and arrived early enough to check out the venue before dinner. This, we realized, was a good idea, because we found out that half the parking lot was under construction, and we needed to be back earlier than we had originally planned.
We drove back to Applebee's for the Pella Posse Rockavention. Liz and Karla were already there, setting up stuff. At this point, I had expressed that I was hungry about 500 times. MJ was giddy with hunger herself, and Monica was politely starving. We all ordered our food, and when it arrived, I finally shut up about being hungry. My poor friends and the stuff they put up with that day! I checked out Karla's Rockapella Museum more closely than yesterday, and I was more amazed every time I noticed another detail. When Angela and Gordon arrived, we took the lengthy and difficult Rockapella Quiz that Angela had written. MJ won, and she chose the mug from El's alma mater, Brown University, as her prize. Liz distributed awesome goody bags, which her co-workers had helped her put together. Thanks, everyone! We didn't have enough time to eat the special Rockavention/Hallowe'en cake that Ang and I had made, so we just unveiled it for everyone to see. My carpool mates and I decided that we'd be eating cake on the way home.
When we arrived at the venue, the parking lot was already full, but there was adjacent parking, so that was fine. We finished primping and sat in our "front row" seats. It turns out that our seats were behind the pit, which were not only at a HIGHER level than our seats, but also contained additional seating! Ang was understandably upset. She had bought over a dozen tickets for all of us, and had been assured several times by the ticket sellers that the pit would be empty, and she had the very front row. It turns out that once the regular seats sold out, the pit seats were sold as overflow. We were NOT happy campers.
Rockapella stepped onto the stage, and from the comparison of their outfits to the previous night's, Elliott and Barry must have left their other clothes at home. ;) The rest of the guys were wearing different outfits. Scott clearly had baseball on the brain: during "Moments of You," he mimed being at bat, and during "So Much Better," he mimed being on the pitcher's mound. I think he was practicing his fast ball, because that song had a much quicker beat than I'm used to.
Elliott indicated that it was their first concert in "The Valley of the Antelope," To show off some of his geographical knowledge. It turns out, however, that my neighbors in Lancaster were rhythmically challenged. During "Sixteen Tons," people tried to clap on the same beat as Barry's snaps, but, alas, this was not meant to be. Scott tried to get the audience to clap with him, but nope. It was so bad that the song went awry, and ended in a different key. Oops. The crowd tried again during "Use Me," and one of the guys said, "They're determined." The PellaPosse was in hysterics of laughter. Poor guys.
Kevin said that Barry was happy, because he was back in L.A. I didn't think Barry was quite proud to have been brought up here after the whole I-ain't-got-no-rhythm debacle.
Since there were no opening acts, we had an intermission, during which Angela and I tried to sit in a couple of the pit seats, because nobody seemed to want to stay there once they sat down. We were booted out by the real ticket holders, though. After the guys sang "Love Potion No. 9" (my first time to hear that--yay!), El mentioned that he was confused about the pit seating, because those people were the fifth set of people to sit in those particular seats. He wondered if we were all playing a version of "Survivor," and people were voted out of the audience.
After the Folger's jingle, people from the audience started telling the guys where they should visit. Scott couldn't take it any more. He finally said, "Yes, we've been to San Diego. Stop talking!" During Holiday Folger's, Scott played up the lyrics by ad-libbing, "Ooh, that aroma." I now giggle whenever I hear that song.
Kevin told Pretty Woman Sandy some whacked-out story that Barry had an ex-girlfriend named Sandy from the High Desert, and has a difficult time singing the "Sandy" song. OK, Kev. Afterward, he made fun of Scott's dance.
The guys started to sing "Don't Tell Me You Do," and April et al squealed in delight, almost throwing off the guys. I slouched in my seat and, in embarrassment, pretended to not know them. Just kidding, gals. Although I did try to shrink in my embarrassment. I love being able to hear Jeff included in the harmony for this song. Go, Jeff, sing it!
Scott was in rare form. He said that every night, he has to face the man with "the largest things we've ever seen...a mountain of man." Whoa, Barry! I can't believe Scott said that first phrase. Anyway, he said that he'd transform from the "girlie caterpillar, the frilly, fuzzy centipede," and let break forth the "Paul Bunyan Butterfly." He would cease to be the "man trapped in a man's body." WHAT???!!! That segued into Barry's rendition of "Big Bad John," which I love more every time.
During "Tempted," Elliott stopped singing, because he was laughing. When the others noticed, it just made him laugh more. Cute.
Afterward, a table was set up in the lobby for the guys to meet and greet. Elliott was cute. I was standing away from the crowd and leaned against a wall. He saw me, caught my eye, and waved to me with a smile. That made my day. :) We were finally able to give Phil his goodies, which he especially enjoyed, because they were toys that he didn't already own.
The guys were quite impressed with our loco homage to them, and perused Ang's awesome scrapbook. Jeff even wrote a little remark next to his picture with major monster eyes. He said, "I look like the devil. I'm possessed." We took some pics with them--finally, a new PellaPusher pic for the site!
Elliott was hungry. He couldn't decide if he wanted to eat the food that was already prepared for them, or if he wanted to eat at Chili's. He said, "I want shrimp." He looked at me and asked, "Do they have shrimp at Chili's?" (I guess I look like some kind of Chili's expert). I told him that I thought so, and he decided that they were going to Chili's. Boy, did I hope that I was right about that.
Phil said that the guys needed to eat, and we'd get to talk to them more at Santa Rosa. Kevin waved a bag of granola at us (Phil didn't want his, and gave it to Kevin upon our suggestion), and Kevin yelled out to us as he left, "You're saving my life!" Kevin makes me smile a lot.
On our way home, we ate cake and hashed out the night's events. I'd like to say that we were too excited to sleep, but we were all quite tired from our early morning travels, so we went to bed soon after we got back to my place. Sweet 'Pella Dreams, Gals!