Friday was my birthday. I spent it well enough, mostly looking for things to buy with various gift cards I'd legally acquired. I found myself at Barnes & Noble. They were advertising the Twilight Saga book release party for Breaking Dawn. I asked a few questions. Nah. Amusing thought, but nah. However, with my curiosity now piqued, I drove to Borders Books and found a couple of more helpful employees who were decorating for their version of the party. Now, Borders I had a gift certificate for. And I'm a member of their thingy or whatever. And they told me I would get 40% off the book price if I bought it that night. Hm. "Is it going to be a bunch of 16-year-olds and me? 'Cause I refuse to be the old freak there." No, they assured me that "other old women" would be there, too. Well that was a load off. I made up my mind regardless. The reduced book price, combined with the winning formula of a teenaged debate over Edward and Jacob and a sure-to-be-awesome costume contest, and how could I not go?
I mulled over exactly who would be willing to accompany me on such an excursion rife with possibilities. Of the friends who had read the book(s), I could only find two who were willing to go on short notice (the rest of the people I considered are dead to me now. DEAD!). Jody read the books and enjoyed them. She's also too nice to say no, especially on my birthday. She agreed to go. Lisa read the first book and hated it. She's not too nice to say no, but fortunately I have guilt working on my side that forced her hand. Her excuse was something about her getting away from her family, but I know deep down that she only came because 1) it was my birthday 2) she DITCHED MY BABY SHOWER, and 3) SHE DITCHED MY BABY SHOWER. So she agreed to come. I was giddy with anticipation. Our mighty trio was unstoppable.
And then we got there. Jody and I arrived together first and just stared at the unholy mass before us. This mass was in the midst of a painful trivia contest led by one of the fearless employees I had spoken with hours before. Jody and I stared at each other. I instantly thought to myself that this was a big mistake. Gah, two more hours of this?? What was I thinking? Fortunately, it didn't take long for the quiet observations to begin, and when Lisa arrived those observations stopped being as quiet.
Lisa brought me a giftbag for my birthday (I think there was something in it--I can't recall now). As she arrived during the Heated Debate portion of the festivites, I used my new bag to announce my preference for Team Mike, mostly in hopes of irritating some fans. Instead, mostly it just amused them to the point of one girl even asking if she could take a photo of my bag and the Volturi-chick high-fiving me. Sure, whatever, just take my joy from me already IT'S ONLY MY BIRTHDAY.
Over the course of the evening I offered $5 to Jody if she would get up in the middle of the debate and make a solid case for Mike over Edward or Jacob. I also offered $5 to Lisa if she would get up to the mic and tell the entire crowd exactly what she thought of Twilight. Sadly, neither took me up on my offer. Should I have offered $10?
Speaking of the Heated Debate. When I read the evening's program (organized, aren't they?) I was pleased to learn about the Edward v. Jacob debates and what that would entail. I was disappointed to find that instead of the orderly panel discussion that Jody and I had envisioned, it was a screaming free-for-all. Now, don't get me wrong. That was entertaining in its own right certainly. I especially loved the fiesty black mother who got up and yelled, "I'd rather have my daughter bring home a dog than a dead man!" Not surprisingly, this comment was met with much enthusiasm from the crowd, including Jody who applauded comments in Jacob's favor, and also Lisa, who was screaming loudly and applauding any comment from either side that she could hear or not hear. I've never been so entertained.
The costume parade was next. Most of the books' female vampires were represented, with my favorites being the Volturi member and "Rosalie." Of all the freakshows, Rose was the nicest and gladly let me take her photo. Imagine my joy when I discovered yesterday in conversation with Gwennifer that she actually knows the girl in the photo. Seriously, what are the odds?
While the "vampires" were getting their photo taken I attempted to sneak up behind in hopes of recreating my favorite photobomber photo:
Instead, Lisa saw me creeping up behind them and announced in a very loud voice, "My friend, Abby, LOVES your costumes! Can she be in the photo with you?" So I had to actually pose with the lot. Thanks a million, Lisa. At least I made up for it a little by mustering as much visible stupidity as I possibly could for their photos.
The evening progressed with various activities to keep us from trashing the place and ending up in prison (I'm assuming that was their goal anyway). Borders employees handed out buttons and stickers that said things like "I was bitten by Breaking Dawn," "Breaking Dawn left me breathless...." and "Bella & Edward 4ever." They also handed out stickers for Team Jacob and Team Edward with the respective actors' faces on them. I still regret not getting a photo of the girl who had covered her entire upper body in Jacob stickers.
Most of our conversations with strangers happened to be with mothers of daughters in the crowd. You know, since we looked old and safe. But by and large the most enlightening conversation we had took place with a couple of mid-teen girls. One of them expressed her fondest desire to live long enough to see the creation of an Edward/Jacob Rock 'em Sock 'em game. The only thing that she would love to see even more, as it turns out, is a topless mud wrestling match between the female characters in the book. When we didn't respond (what do you say to that?), she defended her wish by stating that no one would be more interested in such a match than teenage girls. We stared at her until she went away.As 11:30 approached, the Event Staff (aka Book Event Law Enforcement) raffled off the first place in line (a raffle I was informed I could not enter because I hadn't had the foresight to reserve the book last week--and yet, a different lady said I could do whatever I wanted. I'm sure she knew it was my birthday. Mostly because Lisa and Jody kept telling her it was.). We didn't win. So we got in the back of the line and got pushed around by obnoxious, intentionally oblivious teens. As midnight approached, we began hearing brief screams from the front of the queue. We finally decided they screamed at the top of the minute as the time approached midnight. We got to hear two countdowns from the crowd, the first being a false alarm since the crowd forgot to take into account that the books only could be sold at 12:01, not midnight.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Jody and Lisa for going to a function they certainly didn't need to attend, all for company's and entertainment's (and Guilt's) sake. They didn't even buy a book and yet they waited in line with me until nearly 12:30am until I acquired one of my own, cheering me on and reminding the crowd yet again that it was my birthday. Smart-alecs....
You wish you had friends like mine. Well, two of them anyway.
DEAD! Do you hear me? DEAD!