Immediately after returning form Los Angeles with a U-Haul full of apartment furnishings, my good friend whisked me away to the premiere red carpet event in Palm Springs, the Awards Red Carpet for the Palm Springs International Film Festival. This friends of mine was inspired by a Facebook post of a contest I entered through a local TV station for tickets to the bleachers of this event to enter as well. He won, and since I inspired the win, he brought me along with the second ticket.
The event did not start out as a grand evening of fun and frivolity. It started as an afternoon of near blindness and boredom. First, we had to be there at 2:30 pm for an event that was not going to start until 5:30 maybe. The awards gala was at 7:00 pm so the red carpet was going to start at 5:30 according to crowd guesstimate.
Next we went through a metal detector that was somewhat reminiscent of what some inner city high schools used back in the early nineties. We were allowed to choose which seats we wanted. We choose the top row back in a corner where hopefully, no one would block our photo ops. During this entire time, we are forgetting we are in the desert in winter. This means that when we took our bleacher seats, we are staring directly into the blazing setting sun...for two hours. We may not be able to see anyone famous even if they came up and gave us a lap dance due to our retinas being permanently damaged.
The crowd surrounding us kept us mildly entertained and annoyed during our wait time. Included in this are the extreme fans, who want nothing more than a photo op with a start on their iPhone, their face mashed against a start in some cheesy photo that will be used to prove to friends and relations how well connected they are. There is also a couple who is swearing up and down that they know most of these starts when they were less famous and so they will get a personal hello and time with this celebrity. As always there is a precocious young girl who is hell bent on getting face time with the stars and brought an autograph book ans spent most of the time before the stars arrived haranguing those around her for a pen, because she forgot one.
Around 4:45pm the chaos began with the arrival of the first marquee star. The bleachers immediately emptied to the front rows and left my friend and I to fire away with unobstructed shots, except when his arm got in my way. The couple was swearing they knew her when was calling out her name and was somewhat perturbed when she did not come over to our section. The girl, with pilfered pen in hand, was trying to get her first autograph by being impossibly obnoxious, and the women with signs did nothing, because this was not the one they came to see.
I could go into an entire list of who I saw and who they were wearing, but that was done by other bloggers who specialize in that kind of star watching. I got to check something off my life list and both my friend and I swore we would never do this again because extreme boredom paired with chaos and mayhem is just not our thing. I did get some good photos though.