Oh! I guess I should write about The VMAs. DUH.
Ok let me preface this by saying just how excited I was to be a part of it. It's the biggest award show of the year, point blank. Yea, there are the Grammy Awards and the Emmy Awards and all of that, but none of them bring the excitement like The Video Music Awards. It has always been a can't-miss event of the fall, and this year was no different. I'll do my best to relay the experience with help of the pictures I was able to discreetly snap using my BlackBerry. So here goes.
Saturday Morning. 4am. I wake up, stumble out of my bed and into the shower, and before I know it, the town car was outside to take me to LAX. A little after 7, I was on a plane to New York City. The flight was about six hours, and since we were going across time zones, I got to New York around 3:30 in the afternoon. This took a minute for me to wrap my brain around, since I was still sleep deprived and in a jet lagged haze. By the time I got my head together, I was in the back of another town car in the middle of Times Square. It's a little surreal to wake up in a (albeit swanky) little neighborhood in LA and then hours later be in the center of the busiest city in the world. But I mean, that's what sums up the last few months of my life: surreal. Anyway, I get dropped off at the hotel that everyone from MTV was staying at, The W Times Square, without much time to spare before I needed to get to work. So I ran in, threw my bag down on the bed, briefly admired the view, and was off to Radio City.
Now, it's a well known fact that my sense of direction is basically non-existent, but The W is so close to Radio City that even I couldn't screw it up. It was almost 5:00, and Press had a walk through of the venue, so I rushed through the crowded streets and made it there just in time. We were taken through the MTV press compound, the general press room, the house, and the red carpet. It was so nuts to recognize the venue from past VMAs, and see the whole thing from behind the scenes. Then I got my credentials, which I'll admit, was really exciting.
After all of that, we were all dismissed, but I stayed back for a few to talk to my bosses to make sure we were all set for the next day, and to just sort of take the whole thing in. Then it was off to MTV Headquarters, the historic 1515 Broadway. We ended up working there until 3am, finalizing credentials and press releases and things like that. A lot of work, but I'm not about to complain. So worth every second of it. Plus, the offices had a sick view of Times Square.
The view from 1515
I only got a few hours of sleep that night, but when I woke up, I was immediately so excited about it being the day of the show that I didn't feel tired at all. Some of the girls I was working with and I went to brunch at Blue Fin, and then it was back to Radio City. We got there and started sorting credentials and figuring out carpet placement for the media. Every so often, I'd sneak off into the house to get a peak at dress rehearsals with Katy Perry & Joe Perry (no relation), Pink, and Beyonce. I had my eyes peeled for Lady Gaga the whole day, but they were keeping her under wraps. Then we went a block down to the building that we were going to be doing press check in and holding all the people from the different media outlets in until it was time to line them up on the carpet (which also happened to be the Republican Women's Convention Center. Ummm...) Reporters and bloggers from over 150 different outlets came rolling in, and as the day wore on, and the streets outside Radio City filled up with fans wanting to catch a glimpse of their favorite stars on the red carpet, people started having a pretty hard time actually finding the building to check in at.
A few times, I had to actually hunt people down. They would say “Tynan, Marc Malkin from E! Is having trouble finding the place, we need you to go find him.” Me, who has no sense of direction whatsoever, and doesn't know how to get around New York at all. GREAT. So off I went into the streets of New York City, now packed with fans, trying to find one of the biggest entertainment bloggers in the business. Luckily I found him without much trouble. Now, getting him an all access cred was another challenge, since he wasn't technically 'talent.' So here's me, on the brink of a meltdown, trying not to screw things up or look like a complete ass. But he was really great to work with and had a sense of humor about the whole thing. We're basically BFFs now. I had to do the same thing with Trevor from JustJared as well. This is my job people.
The Red Carpet
So before long, we loaded everyone onto the red carpet, and the night began. My job on the red carpet was “photo running,” meaning working with a couple choice photographers and getting their memory cards to the photo editing room. Except there were so many of us doing it that I basically stood at the top of the carpet and helped with the flow of talent. Not a bad gig. I saw EVERYBODY. Oh my god. Seriously.
Ok here's the quick gossip breakdown. Pink and Shakira were two people away from eachother on the carpet wearing THE SAME DRESS. Obvious travesty. They both had a great sense of humor about it and joked the whole time. I mentioned something about it out loud and Pink's publicist threatened me within an inch of my life and was only half kidding. Leighton Meester is the only person who can pull off looking like a total crack whore and really glamorous at the same time. I ran face first into Taylor Swift on the red carpet, oops. I guess that's karma for all of the shit I've talked about her this passed year. I'm not even a fan of hers, but she looked flawless, although I'm not convinced she hasn't already experimented with botox. Just saying. It was great to see the boys from 3OH!3 there, and nominated! It reminded me of my ZBT boys :-). Kristin Cavallari is a fucking snake. Taylor Lautner is the most gorgeous minor EVZ. It's excruciating. I literally thought I was going to die when Cobra Starship pulled up in a double-decker tour bus going like 80 miles an hour straight at me. I also thought I was going to die when Lady Gaga hit the carpet. She is the only person I got starstruck over. Once I heard “Lady Gaga has arrived” over my headset, I swear to god the world stopped turning for a sec. You think Chase Crawford is hot on Gossip Girl? Wait until you've seen him in person. Unreal. We locked eyes and it was like he tore my soul into pieces. Mmm. J.Lo and Marc Anthony came, but the paparazzi only wanted pictures of J.Lo alone, so Marc came over and stood next to me and rolled his eyes. HA. Shut up Marc, you're married to Jennifer F-ing Lopez, you have nothing to complain about. Stephani Pratt is my age and has had entirely too much work done. She was literally unrecognizable. And Perez Hilton is a parasite.
I snapped a few photos of people on the carpet. This one of Pink for Kassi:
And this one of Beyonce for Dee. I can't lie, the girl is fierce.
Some of the Zebes and my friend at San Fransisco State found these pictures of me on the red carpet. How funny is that?!
Nikki Hilton. I love that the camera caught me totally judging her outfit. Naturally.
Alessandra Ambrosio. I don't know, I guess she's a super model that models for Victoria Secret & the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition. I guess that one's kind of lost on me.
I was lucky enough to get to see the show from inside the venue, since I was photo running and trouble shooting during the show. I was so happy because all of the performances were INCREDIBLE. So impressed with everyone. It was great to see Madonna (MADONNA!) (...and her huge hair) introduce the MJ tribute. And no, the Kanye thing wasn't staged.
It was a crazy night altogether, but wow, how amazing. After the show, I was SO tired and SO hungry, so much so that I turned down the after party in mid-town to get some food and get to sleep. (Me turn down an after party? I know right.) My friend Brendan, the founder of TheFacesOfUs.com, lives only a few blocks off of times square, so we went to an all night diner in Hell's Kitchen. After a huge burger and three pints of beer, I was feeling great. I ended up crashing at about 2am, and flew back to LA at 8 the next morning. What a weekend.