Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Rufus! Rufus! Rufus!

The Hollywood Bowl goes Over the Rainbow.

On Sunday we saw Rufus Wainwright perform Judy Garland's 1961 Hollywood Bowl Concert. Strange concept. Very intriguing. We were trying to get four terrace level box seats, but since I drug my heals, we wound up in the Benches. The joke of that is that for the price of ONE seat in the terrace box level, we had four seats and parking for one dollar more. YAHOO!

I won't bother to give a review of the concert. Many others have done that better than I can.

I likes me some Judy Garland. I'm not a crazed fan. I likes me some Rufus Wainwright. But again I am no crazed fan. I can tell you that some people seemed disappointed that Judy didn't show up. I say go see and impersonator. Some thought Rufus' voice sounded tired and there were times on some song endings where his voiced seemed to give out.

It seemed to bring home the point of how amazing must that original performance have been. At three hours of non-stop singing and you know Judy Garland was still belting them out. Murder I tell ya'. Murder.

What I enjoyed the most was the one of a kind experience it was. Rufus is doing this mini-tour recreation of the original tour. New York at Carnegie Hall, London at the Palladium, Paris at the Olympia and finally in Los Angeles at the Hollywood Bowl. I am always up for one of those "Only in LA" type of experiences, though in this case it was actually "Only in New York, London, Paris and LA" I still wanted to go. (the Carnegie Hall album and DVD will be available in stores December 4, 2007 - you know I'm getting that.)

I knew from reading a little in advance that he should at some point come out in the classic Judy Garland wardrobe for "Get Happy" which is a double breasted black tuxedo jacket,a black fedora and fishnet stockings. After he allegedly had sung his last song bu the orchestra was still on stage, I told my little group to stay put, they were going to love the encore. And sure enough he did not disappoint.
Judy "Gets Happy"

Rufus "Gets Happy"

So I enjoyed the spectacle of it all. I loved the part where he went out into the audience and gave Debbie Reynolds a kiss. I loved that he brought out his performing mother and sister and included them. I loved seeing Lorna Luft (Judy Garland's daughter) perform and being able to close my eyes and hear Judy Garland on the stage. And in the end I'm glad we bought our $22 tickets and not the $100 tickets because then I can do more things like that.
Debbie Reynolds gets a hug from Rufus.

Lorna Luft and Rufus Wainwright.

This is a mini-movie I made with low quality images from my cellphone video camera. Clearly I added the soundtrack.

Here are some much better video's shot by other people:

That was all fun and great, but now for the most interesting part. The stacked parking lot at the Hollywood Bowl. There were two lanes of cars parked between a green strip of grass wrapped in concrete curbs with Palm trees spaced in the middle close enough that you could not drive a car between them. In Stacked parking, no one goes until the cars in front are occupied and leave. You know this when you pull in. Oh well, such is the parking at the Hollywood Bowl.

Except for the Asshat in the minivan three cars back and one lane over.

Since we had been sitting for about three hours, when we got to our car and found no one in the four cars in front of us, I said, "No point in getting in the car and sitting some more. Let's just hang out here next to the car." A common sentiment around us as three other groups of people waited around their cars next us.

Then the minivan man flashes his lights and sticks his head out his window, "COME ON! LET'S GO!! WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU WAITING FOR?"

Mostly the groups of people glance up then sort of laugh it off. He gotta be kidding. Right? Too bad he's not really funny.

Then he repeats his light flashing, shouting tirade. This time accompanied by honking his horn.

Oh my God. He's serious.

So I walk back three cars and ask him what he wants us all to do? "MOVE YOUR CARS!"

"Well that would be great!" I tell him, "Did you bring your car jack that lifts 3 ton cars and moves them to the other side of the parking lot? Or are you just so big and burly that you're going to come out of that car and he-man lift them all by yourself. We're not all just standing around for the love of standing. We have to wait for the cars that are in front of us, just like you do. So if you have some magic powers that the rest of us don't have, be my guest and come on down."

To which he responded, "Oh I'd like to 'Come on down' for you sweetie." with a slight mocking tone. To which I replied, "I don't think you'll ever be man enough to do that!" as I walked away.

I got back to my group of friends and asked them if they would tell me if he was getting out of his car with a crowbar and walking towards my back. They promised they would.

A minute went by and a man approached from behind nearly scaring me, "I just have to tell you, that was brilliant. Thank you." and he went back to his car which was parked next the the Asshat.

We continued to wait for the cars in front to be moved by their owners. Still not enough had arrived to free us. Then the lane behind us started to open up. The last car left, the next car left... but still one car was sitting behind us keeping us from a reverse exit. Oh well, what can you do. We started chatting to the people around us as we were out of topics to discuss amongst ourselves.

By now the lane next to the minivan was open but neither car in front of him nor behind him had come to drive away. Stacked parking has attendants that encourage you to pull in as tight as you can so they can fit one more car, one more car, one more car at the end.

But the minivan believed he could get out.

He started inch forward, turn wheel, inch back, turn wheel other way. Inch forward, turn wheel, inch back, turn wheel other way. This was going to be a lengthy 18 point turn. Then on inch forward and back number 16, he thought he could skip a step and pulled forward past the car in front... or rather he thought he would but instead scraped the hell out of the back bumper of the car in front. Then continued to jockey back and forth.

This did not sit well with the witnesses. One man from the car next to us reached into his car, got out his camera cell phone and went over to eh minivan and took a close-up photo of his license plate.

"What the hell are you doing?"
"If you aren't going to leave your contact info, I will." said the camera man.
"I didn't even hit it!"
"How would you know? You never got out of your car to check. Even Britney Spears got out of her car to check!" Which of course you must have figured out by now, that a Judy Garland Tribute concert there were in fact quite a few gay men waiting for their cars to be unblocked. Gay men love a good Britney in trouble reference.

So the man got out of his car to come and check the damage to the front car's bumper. He deems it just minor dust disturbance. And his wife shouts that he doesn't know how to drive and she will now be taking over. She gets out of the passenger side, wobbles, then staggers to the driver's side and revs the engine.

"Oh my god, she's hammered!" says Lyle.

She pops it into reverse, jumps the curb behind her, pushes on the palm trees (which luckily stopped her from going into other traffic) then swings the car hard around to ram into the front of the car the used to be behind her. Hell yeah,she's the better driver! She made a much louder noise!

With no intention of leaving anymore information this time either, the husband goes to get in on the passenger side and the pair of them will make their getaway. Except for all these pesky people who've been watching. The mob drags over a parking attendant who has been watching but from a distance. As if to protect himself from becoming involved.

Mob member #1: You need to stop them!
Mob member #2: Don't let them drive away!
Mob member #3 (to different attendant): You! Go get the police!

And the mob steps into the van's way and the parking attendant walks over to tell the man that he's going to have to wait where he is.

It takes longer than it should to get the police there. They are standing at the base of the driveway (about 500 feet away) and seem reluctant to step away from watching traffic drive past them. But finally one officer arrives,then a second. The drivers are both removed from the minivan and it is discovered neither one has brought their license.

Now the owners of the scraped cars return. Cameraphone photos are sent and finally the drivers of the last car behind us has arrive. Except that blasted van is now blocking our reverse escape!

Lyle tells the police to move the van. The protest that it is now a crime scene and can't be moved. Lyle tells them that the crime happened one lane over and the van has already been moved so why not let all the nice people who did their job of holding the drivers leave by the reverse escape route and the police finally agree.

As we are departing, one friend in our car is chanting "Cuff 'em! Cuff 'em! Cuff 'em!" and I make Lyle promise to lock the windows so he can't shout that as we drive by.

So, to the Asshat who was in such a hurry that he thought he could do a 36 point turn and leave after the Rufus Wainwright concert, I hope those 15 minutes you thought you could save were worth the night you probably spent in jail Smart one.


Sherri said... is so rare that those who live in permanent colon inspection mode have justice visited upon them quite SO completely. Lovely story. Restores my faith in humanity, it does :D

Rachel said...

That is hilarious! Dinner, drinks, and TWO shows!

Carolyn said...

Okay, I am not a gay man, but I love a Britney Spears bad-girl reference too! I laughed out loud, which is something I don't do very often (unless I'm drunk at a basket party). I also love Judy Garland and Debbie Reynolds...Hmmm...maybe I am a gay man.
Anyway, I love that you got in that guy's face and managed to put him in his place without a single swear word. Fuckin' A!!

jay said...

I love Rufus!

The T-Dude said...

You are a better man than I am Gunga Din. It would have taken a lot for me not to drop a few f-bombs at that moron. Well done.