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KANDRE Does Clay Aiken


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RECAP BY KANDRE

Ha HA! Someone in my office actually had to check with me about Clay and the plane - we laughed...my cousin is emailing me about this! Heh!

The Beginning of the Totally Terrific Texas Twofer and Tulsa!

Warning: spoilers ahead so beware...

Ok, so the eHP might be powerful...we are definitely hot...we're do evil well...but organizational skills tend to be spotty.

Tuesday, July 3: I go see my podiatrist and tell him I'm planning on spending a quiet 4th with my leg elevated above my heart just like he told me too, and didn't planning any walking around. Since I am such a good patient, he said my stitches could come out on the 10th. Woo hoo! I head to my office, pretend to work until it's time to go get Solo, and make freakish good time. We both wander cluelessly around passenger pickup until I see her calling me on the phone (no, not hear her - see her), toss her stuff in the back and head to a Nissan dealership to car shop. What? You don't go car shopping when you pick up guests? You ought to try it! After messing around at the dealer (where they lost like everything, including the car I was looking at), we have we've got to go meet the rest of the eHP for dinner because Scarlett has demanded it. And we want to go shoe shopping. At the big DSW. [Do not try to understand our priorities - they change from minute to minute.] After running around like chickens with our heads cut off, we get a call from that heifer Scarlett abandoning us for pizza with her husband. And we can hear her telling her husband that we just didn't want to eat with her and he needed to pamper her. We threaten Scarlett, but she figures her cuteness factor will win in the end. So we go to the little DSW in the Galleria, Solo makes me put back some excessively cute hooker shoes, I buy two other pair anyway, make merrieeee drive into town to have dinner with play and all lie to each other that we actually know where the restaurant is. As we are waiting for merrieeee and play, Solo goes to another shoe store. We decide to arrive at merrieeee's at 7:30 the next morning and leave by 8. Scarlett, who is on the phone, insists that she will be at merrieeee's house at 6 am (merrieeee indicates that Scarlett will be wandering around in the dark as she doesn't plan on waking up at 6 am for anybody who's not named Clay). We all agree we will head for Frisco by 8 am. Solo and I head for my place and I tell her it's messy, and she goes, "like duh". She goes in my front door and my cat is in looooooove. He ponderously rolls on his back to show her his cute side. He carefully cleans her toes. He follows her throughout the house, and wails piteously outside the bathroom door since she wouldn't let him in. She just should've given him the Cheez Doodle he wanted. I set the alarm for 6:30. We go to bed. The alarm goes off, I get up, and my cat, who is trying to be helpful, sort of nips Scarlett to wake her butt up. She screams. I tell her it was true love. She says bad things about the cat. We putz around until 7:10 looking for a BofA ATM, realize we have 20 minutes to do 45 miles, and take off. Still make it to merrieeee's by 7:35a and beat just about everybody there. keepingfaith pulls in right behind us. We go in merrieeee's house and admire the high class door prizes. At 8 am, we think maybe it's time to hit the road. But wait! Who's not here? Why, it's Scarlett! Solo calls Scarlett who claims we said be at merrieeee's by 8. We said, no, we didn't, and anyhoo, it's 8 now where the hell was she? It boils down that we left at 10. Which is when we sort of guessed we were leaving anyway. And anyway, PerusingOne likes sitting at the airport, waiting for our butts. We fill up the SUV with our crap, and caravan north, pick up PerusingOne and get lunch in Dallas. keepingfaith volunteers (or is volunteered - it general works out the same) to come with me (or I guess I go with her since it's her car) to pick up Muski and Claygasm and to be introduced to the joys of that is a GPS. The rest of the eHP has discovered a Best Buy, and we have yet to go on a trip without stopping in one. Because we (and we are using the royal we because it's just actually one named Scarlett) are insane. keepingfaith proceeded to name my GPS Elvira, and learned to holler at it like we do. We picked up Muski first, who then proceeded to 'accidentally' fling her underwear in the air. No, not the pair I assume she was wearing. I was so surprised. Claygasm appeared shortly thereafter, but underwear flinging did not ensue. keepingfaith, apparently feeling that we needed exercise, promptly forgot where we parked the car, but faked like she knew where she was going really well. Me, I just went back to the car. I don't believe in running unnecessarily (Hush! No comments from the peanut gallery yet, ding-dang it!). We only drove in a couple of circles around in the parking garages, as it was clear that DFW did not see the point of actually posting too many exit signs - we might get spoiled. The rest of the eHP tells us to stop playing around and head to the soccer field. We say no, we're not that far away, stay there and we'll meet you at Best Buy. By now Elvira is telling us to go in what I think is a stupid direction, and I am sure I know much better than the GPS, even though I've only driven in Dallas once. Maybe three years ago. keepingfaith hasn't been around long enough to know that this is a bad sign and listens to me as I tell her to ignore Elvira and go this way. After not actually seeing the mall again (apparently it was on a completely different freeway, though frankly it sorta looked like the other freeway - maybe they were fraternal twins or something, I call Solo back and say we've decided to go on to the venue. Solo made a rude noise for no apparent reason. Elvira snickers, and directs us to Pizza Hut Park (see, I occasionally remember the name!) Since we seemed to be on a roll, Muski and Claygasm decided they wanted to go to their hotel. Not that they knew where it was. Or the address. Claygasm claimed it was the only Hampton Inn in Frisco. Even though Elvira said there were two. We picked the closer one and off we went. The rest of the eHP still hadn't made it to Pizza Hut Park (Elvira kicks Damion's ass!) and so said they would meet us at the hotel. We scramble around little bit, some of us change clothes and the caravan heads off to the venue. We park in the lot directly across from the entrance. This is called foreshadowing and will be important later (Points at muski and laughs). We (for no reason that I can see) wander all over creation, passing by some medical personnel, who grab me and force me to take a goodie bag and a cold soda. Of course, since we were ten feet from the entrance, we had to dump the free soda. We have great seats, see lots and lots of Clay fans, find sugrbugr. Apparently there was some sort of soccer game. One of the teams won. play discovered the location of the t-shirt, frozen lemonade, and best of all, frozen margaritas that cost the same as frozen lemonade. I was good however (especially since I had vicodan back in my purse), and play being the excellent scout that she is, hauled all the loot back to me. I, remembering what my wonderful podiatrist told me and being the good girl that I am, just wandered close to the gate to get a better view of the field, and only commented a couple of times that the guard on the other side of the stadium were letting people actually on the freakin' stairs, but we won't go into that. I swear, the crowd simply wafted my butt onto the field and fairly close to the stage.

to be continued with...

The Concert!

Hey! Where are my paragraph people! Y'all need to come fix this!

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KANDRE RECAP

I never though we HAD to bold – it's not like consistency is our middle, first or last name…

You will also notice that Claygasm does not deny knowing nothing about the hotel except for the fact that it was in Frisco…

And Clay, Clay just totally rocks…

Starting to Get Into the Middle But Still Mostly Close to the Beginning of the Totally Terrific Texas Twofer and Tulsa!

The Baby Duck that was Frisco...

Tuesday, July 3 (evening): See, back in Houston, we purchases tarps and toe rings and cheap shoes to keep us dry at the concert as we had anticipated dancing to Clay on a sea of mud. My fellow eHPers, knowing I was among the walking wounded, promises to go and find a nice spot on the field for US and I would perambulate down later at my own pace. The guards open the gate, the other eHPers going down on the field leap the people in front of them and never look back. As I was passed by a "young" gray-haired lady and her walker hoofing down the field going at least 20 mph, I knew I needed to pick up the pace a tad or get run over. I get to my spot, spread my tarp to mark my territory in a family friendly way, and sat my ass down because running down the field was not the brightest thing I've done in a long time.

I am surround by a nice variety of people to whom I point out my clearly bandaged foot in order to engender pity in case I need character witnesses if I have to coldcock someone for stepping on my foot.

Absolutely gorgeous 4th – perfect weather – and the excitement on the field where I was was palpable…people were playing around a lot but hell, that's what we do on the fourth…

Quiana came striding out to cheers, waving madly at the audience…Angela came out next to more cheers (I could hear people asking who were they and others answering). Then a rumble of screams began, and Clay didn't stride, he strolled out to Here You Come Again, just as casual…smirking to himself in that delightful way he has – he didn't seem particularly stressed, but no matter what the show is like, Clay will be put on a performance for you on all levels. (More on that later). People screamed for that. Then he talked. And he talked. And he talked some more. He was pushing it a little at the beginning, which makes me think he was really as excited as we were. He and Quiana sounded great on I Want to Know What Love Is; then he started talking again. And he talked. And he talked some more. Then he did When I See You Smile. Then the orchestra did something orchestral that I didn't recognize. He said it was the theme to "West Wing" though it could have been Pavel's Concerto in F flat for all I know. But I'm a good fan, I believe Clay. I just was totally indifferent to it. Then he talked. And he talked. And he talked some more. This time about TV. Man, the dude likes him some TV. And talking. Then they did a whole bunch of theme songs, of which I recognized about half (even though I've seen about 90% of the shows), I just have never cared about theme songs. He does sing them excessively well. Though he should know trying to make me identify Matlock is just a losing proposition. Then he talked. And he talked. And he talked some more. And sang These Open Arms freakishly well, as I loved it and I didn't love it before. Then he intro'd Quiana and said no intermission and she did great on Lights Go Down. Then he talked. And he talked. And he talked some more. And then there was the glory that was Without You – I have always found that to be a gorgeous vehicle for his voice. Then he talked. And he talked. And he talked some more. At this point I begin to realize it's a real possibility that he is being paid by the word. He talks about uptempo, and classics and swings into Baby Got Back. Interesting choice. I feel that he was expressing the latent sensuality inherent in a segment of the population of the nineties that showed a distinct preference for the voluptuous over the media's portrayal of willowy body type as superior. I admit, I admire Clay's philosophical choices in these matters. No, really. His other choices were equally interesting (OK, y'all are gonna have to give me a couple of days to come up some sort of rational for Achy Breaky Heart – that's a toughie). He stole my heart with his version of OPP and Yeah, if only because of the number and types of explanations rapidly promulgating across the boards. Heh. And Opposites Attract was just frickin' HOT.

The wretch took Lover All Alone to another level for me. It's still not about the lyrics – honestly, anyone else singing this would not have made any impression on me at all – and Clay's voice on the CD is just enough to keep me from skipping it – but he threw his back into this performance. And it was a performance in my opinion. I know others have commented on the "trembling", "shy offering"; hell, he wrote it at least what 18 months ago, I don't think he's really planning on torturing himself to project the appropriate attitude any more than he was really pissed off during I Survived You. I will be listening to the live version repeatedly however. Because You Loved Me was totally sweet…and he really does a great job with God Bless the USA.

I wander back into the stands for the most incredibly fireworks display I can remember seeing. They must have had explosive lined up for a mile!

to be continued with...

The Joys of Invading Other People's Houses!

Ha hA! I've put in random white (blue?) space this time!

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KANDRE RECAP

Ha! I'm on my THIRD installment! People said I couldn't do it!

I got until midnight!

The Joys of Invading Other People's Houses and Then Discovering That Martha Stewart Is Filled with Envy at Our Lackadaisical Attitude!

Man, I like chewing on Peking Duck!

Wednesday, July 4 (evening): Of course discussion immediately ensued after the concert and as always, we are among the last to leave the field. We get to the front and Muski – dear, dear Muski has to make a pit stop (ifyaknowwhutimean). She and Claygasm wave us on – they'll catch up with us later – it's just across the parking lot. Days later, I finally think to check my mostly dying cell. M & C appears to wish to reenact some sort of Chisholm Trail journey, since they had wandered around to either with South or East or North side of the stadium – hell, we didn't even know that damn thing had other sides. Because we're lazy like that. We described what we can see from the car, and they describe some sort of hot tundra with lots and LOTS and LOTS of angry people in cars and it's clear they have somehow managed to get to another county. Finally, they appears sort of like the Lost Tribe of Israel, trudging over the horizon. They get in the car with me 'n keepingfaith, we start 'er up – and sit on our asses for what seems like hours while all those bastards who thought they were leaving early were frickin' WRONG! However, this gives us even more of an opportunity to discuss and disagree and throw hissy fits, and challenge each other to duels, and commit seppuku…what? None of that happened? Oh, my bad. Apparently, some people don't appreciate how an author like myself will add literary tension to stories to make things interesting. We drop off Muski and Claygasm who seem to be tired for some reason and head to sugrbugr's. Who has a seriously nice margarita machine. And mango margarita machine. And when we finally found the Triple Sec, we were in serious hog heaven. Along with the widescreen HD tv in her bedroom upon which we played OPP over and over and over again. Because that was ART, dammit. And we sincerely appreciate art. Play decides to abandon us psychos around two in the morning...we run around some until our batteries stop twanging a bit – only to pop up bright and early in the morning to watch OPP some more. We like OPP. And fresh baked cinnamon rolls. And mango margaritas. And discussing Frisco. And every time someone new would come into the house we would make them watch OPP again. Good times, good times. Eventually we leave sugrbugr's abode and head south to Houston. And the eHP party.

After sitting for what seems like hours on 635, someone remembers we have clack to watch – the Emmy submission for AI, that happens to consist of the Atlanta auditions and the top 5 performances for AI2, which happened to have Keith's performance on it. So we watched the whole thing. Which really was amazingly entertaining. I'm not sure if we came to a consensus if Clay was doing Keith or not – we did think there was some Madonna and Weird Al though.

We eventually make it to Houston, and I need to leave because I have stuff I have to do. That I probably shoulda done last week. Like buy a frickin'car. And have posters made up. And oddly enough I did the posters before I did the car. And BTW, Kinko's sucks. And get some of the stuff for the raffle. And figure out where the hell we were supposed to park. So I overslept after staying up until 4 am designing crappy posters because my brain wasn't working well enough to have merrieeee design cute ones.

And of course at that time the heavens decided to open up and deluge my butt. As well as the rest of me. Then I had to terrorize the car salesman. Then I realized there was no way in frickin' hell I was gonna make it back to the Woodlands to help haul stuff. And then the skies, heck we were just playin' with you, now we are REALLY gonna rain. I said many, many bad words. Got to the restaurant, and things began to get better. Even without the Vicodan. The catering manager was darling, the space was perfection, the food – superb! Of course we told people they could show up anytime after 3 pm and it was 2:55 pm and I was in crappy soaking wet shorts. So I haul ass into the men's room (like it was gonna get any use that night), fling on some makeup, a couple of glittery things here and there, pull my understated and demure dress over my head, notice I have really lost a couple of pounds cause it was a little loose – and of course the frickin' zipper sticks. I subtly make Karen Eh come and zip me up and it turns into a battle of wills between the zipper and us and we eventually win, though at one point I though Karen Eh was going to mention that running around half naked might be a kickin' fashion statement. And then some evil person (and yes, I'm looking dead at you Solo put a sign on the door of the men's room saying, "Go in for free clack!". You know you will pay for that eventually.

The party seemed to go OK.

to be continued with...

The Houston concert – or Nirvana as it is sometimes known (you know, prior to psycho Courtney Love)

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KANDRE RECAP

The Houston concert – or Nirvana as it is sometimes known (you know, prior to psycho Courtney Love)!

Man, I like chewing on Peking Duck!

Friday, July 6 (evening): After everyone abandoned us to go to Jones Hall, we half-heartedly straightened up until the last of the locusts left, and then stopped all pretense of cleaning, left the dudes a great tip, dropped off more stuff at the cars (Oh, and TBAF is like $1200 richer! Thanks, guys!) and wandered through various tunnels and arrived at Jones Hall, where I had to sit on my butt and wait because Solo took her butt back into the tunnels to look for moi. We wandered in, immediately attracted to the lovely poster with silver numbers on them! Since they had some sort of half-assed special on me ‘n _______ (OK, y’all should know by know I am total crap with names) bought the t-shirt and poster together and contemplated thumping asshole behind the table – when ________ asked for a small, asshole said they didn’t send any, guess they know Clay’s audience. Which is being reported to Jones Hall. So I climb up stairs and then down a ramp, and there it was, my shiny front row seat with only inches between me and climbing up on the stage and having my butt hauled off by security.

I really can’t give y’all details of the Houston concert except he was perfectly Clay. I really think Houston is how he always planned for this concert series to go, he just cut and pasted the show to fit the Frisco as good as possible (I know there’s something wrong with that sentence but for the life of me I can’t fix it. Maybe one of y’all could do it gooder.) The mocking of Scarlett was so priceless, we couldn’t have don’t it better ourselves – and the quickness of thought to protect the clack! It was soooooooooo good. The dancing. The jokes. The orchestra. The singing.

It was just serendipity that I was in the line to shake Clay’s hand – always a good thing.

to be continued with...

The New Sooner Generation or How the Cop Apparently Decided We Weren’t Threatening Enough to Arrest

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KANDRE RECAP

The Rest of Nirvana

or, Misleading everyone 'cause it all sounded good on the front row!

Friday, July 6 (evening): Y'all know I touched the stage (and forced someone to wriggle up there and couldn't reach and then was forced to turn the charm on a strange man who gave them to me and get what turned out to be what I think are Quiana's lyrics but at least Clay stepped on them several times). Believe or not, I haven't actually downloaded any clack - awaiting a certain minion who claims I'm writing "fanfic" - I know where you live now missy! - it has made it really, really clear that where you sit makes a fair amount of difference in the sound quality. The camera snark was so frickin' perfect - until Clay realized that Houston security apparently took everything to heart. Just like us. I think I enjoyed Clay ratting out security dude best of all - and y'all couldn't see Security dude's face who was flabbergasted that Clay had turned on him - abandoned him to the knees of a dozen women. Clay's voice was GORGEOUS; the, uh, 'tribute to Prince', yeah, that's the ticket (man, I think I've loved Prince almost as long as Clay's been alive - that was funny - snarky but funny); the dancing, the eyefucks...the total and complete fuckery of the words to "The Way You Make Me Feel" - hell, I don't think he even got the chorus right. The audience did though. And I have to give a shout out to the behaviour of the Houston audience - for a Clay concert, honest to goodness there was such a minimum amount of damn psychotic bitches shrieking in the middle of Clay's singing "I'm (who clearly am off my meds and have no filter whatsoever and even negative attention is perfectly wonderful when it's from you, Clay!) an attention whore, Clay!" Though in the Classics sections, it says a LOT about the audience make up that "Bills, Bills, Bills" did not get more of a response - as Destiny's Child is from Houston and that was their first top 40 hit. Maybe he should have added "Legs" from ZZ Top. He so totally performs his songs though. Of course, if I ever get some time up close and person to him, we will do a variety of things I will leave to y'all's imagination, then I will kick his ass because the goddam them to "The Greatest American Hero" has been floating around in my head all frickin' week because I don't frickin' KNOW or THINK ABOUT TV theme songs and he has pried open my brain and that one got in. It's not even one he's freakin' singing! Dammit. Ahem.

After the concert, the eHP decides we ain't walking 5 blocks to the Hyatt and go get our cars. Being my minions, they abandon me without a second thought and disappear into the tunnels. Realizing I can save maybe twenty whole feet by staying above ground, I head back to Birraporetti's, when I spot a line. Being me, I get into the line even though I have no earthly idea what it's for, but the possibility that I will get something free has always been a big motivator. I think sugrbugr enlightened me that Clay may come down the line - and it was short! Hey! My kind of Clay line! Jerome came down the line to line us up (though again, the Houston crowd was very well behaved) - small girls stopped him and demanded autographs - he told them he couldn't right then, didn't they want him to keep his job? They pouted at him and he surrendered. We shall turn Scarlett loose on him shortly. No, you don't get to know why. Clay started at the end of the line closest to me (cool) and was moving like that squirrel in "Over the Hedge" on a caffeine high. Nice strong, soft hands - and I'm afraid they were moist because everything is moist in Houston at night in July - we may be a little humid - just a teensy, tiny bit. As soon as he shook my hand, I continue onto my car and was stopped by some people leaving Alley Theater, who pointed to the cliched pop star scene of people attempting to follow Clay into the hotel, and asked who it was. I told them of course. They asked, "Good show?" I say wonderful. They say, "Popular, isn't he?" as we watched two fans who were definitely old enough to know better run into the street against the light and in front of traffic to get all of thirty feet closer to the door Clay went into. I say Yep. I eventually get to my car, drive to the Hyatt, valet park since I didn't pay for the Birraporetti parking, and headed toward the noise.

I managed to get a table, herd the eHP into it and we squealed and talked and I drank as I am surrounding by teetotallers. Waves madly at Savonnette and Savonnette's seriously cute husband, who matches Savonnette's extremely cuteness. Oh, I forgot. I did tell y'all I went ahead and bought a car earlier that day? And lied to the salesman and told him I was picking it up? Well, I did remember to call him sort of from the party and tell him to keep the car until Monday. I have every faith that he wasn't just sitting around waiting for me. Yep.

The eHP eventually leaves the Hyatt a little after midnight, head to merrieeee's, change, throw everything in the back of the SUV in a way guaranteed to give every man I know a headache, make sure there are enough Cheez Doodles and head north. I sleep until the cop shines his light in my face. OK, I have no earthly idea what my minions were doing while I was asleep - they deny any wrongdoing - and I don't think we were doing more than 75 - and I think there's some sort of law in Texas that they aren't supposed to bother you until you hit 80. However, I don't think a carful of innocently blinking ethnic women and one token white girl who wasn't actually mouthing "Help me" was what he was looking forward. We tend to take advantage of that. We got off with a warning, and I went back to sleep. We eventually arrive in Tulsa, find a Mickey D's, and then find our hotel. PerusingOnechecks us in, and I swear, every bellboy in the state of Oklahoma takes one look at all our crap (Kimiye's stuff alone weighed like, lots. I'm actually really bad at estimate weights) and heads for the hills (wait, are there hills in Oklahoma?) Anyhoo, I grab one of there cart thingies, and after a number of minor accidents that weren't my fault at all, I discover that one pair of wheels, like, turn, and the other pair are fixed and if you steer using the turning ones it's easier to avoid running over people. We all crawl into bed and sleep. Except for PerusingOne, who has issues. Fun issues, but issues nonetheless. And me because I wanted a massage. But they didn't have any, so I went back to my rooms and posted stuff. So we went off to lunch with Kimiye's sister and Kimiye's sister's friend, who lived in Tulsa awhile back and so we volunteered her to drive. We had lunch and were called and told that "the hotel said that Tulsa had cut off it's water and it wouldn't be back on until 7 pm" We said bad things. We said many bad things. Kimiye her dad's water conservation rules. We are clearly gonna have to kill someone. And eat less fiber. So we wandered around Tulsa until we found a Walmart and bought: 2 gallons of water, wet wipes and pillows (and we got the good ones for $2.92!). We thought about buying a dresser, but changed our minds (well, Kimiye was feeling up the dresser - how the hell she thought she would get it back to Florida was beyond me - but the eHP is surprisingly versatile). When we got back, the remaining members of the eHP had wandered off and upon their return, provided...interesting...pictures of the venue. The eHP prides itself on knowing exactly what can be given to various members, detemined on what they have lost before. I am not allowed to hold purses. PerusingOne, no tickets. Scarlett, no hotel room keys. Ever. No matter how much she wants them. Because Solo doesn't like sitting out in the hallway of hotels, being propositioned by strange men, oddly enough. We accept these sorts of little quirks. And I did not torture her to get the spare key back, no matter what she says. The water comes on in enough time so we can run it longer enough that it doesn't look like spare irrigation water. We get dressed, and head to the penitentary, I mean, high end venue....

to be continued with...

How We Turned Out to Be An Experiment in How Many Seats Can Be Wedged Into a Limited Space Without Air Conditioning in July and Shrieking Audience Members Without Me Turning and Killing Them All

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