Since getting a ticket to the evening’s show unexpectedly, and since I was a little on the tipsy side from throwing back welcome shots with the walking billboard and Cali-boobs, I decided to take another New Kids ride and head up to the room to say hello to the roomies. The roomies who had just returned from snuggling up to Joe, Jon, Jordan, Danny and Donnie at their VIP sesh…might I add. Bitterness (but not inebriation) aside, I tentatively entered the room and joined the Boston girls for some story time. And boy did they have stories. They didn’t have tickets to the pool party that took place before I arrived (I know, wipe your tears) so they strategically placed themselves in the elevator bay after overhearing some security personnel walkie-talkie arrival instructions. So smooth, ladies. They stood there, loudly discussing how I had asked them to wait for me there so as not to alert any roaming Blockheads to their plan. And before long, the guys and entourage flooded out of the elevator. Donnie looked at the ladies and since he’s a smart man, asked if they were coming with him. And of course they did. They managed to follow the entourage right through security and into the roped off area to enjoy a VIP poolside Block Party. For about half an hour. Which is when security caught wind and asked them to leave. But what a half hour! I’m sure you’d like details but I blocked them all out for my own sake. You understand.
I sat perched on the edge of the bed to listen and choke back hot tears of jealousy until it was time to head back downstairs (and go down on Jon, ironically) and get seated for the show. The lobby was littered with women, mostly in their thirties and a lot of whom were wearing vintage bedsheets and/or pillowcases they had converted into toga-like NKOTB-wear. It was a look. It was definitely a choice. I decided to be classy and stay in my sweaty, probably smelly traveling clothes. Not because I wanted to stink up section 102, but because I had brought a finite amount of outfits and hadn’t expected to get New Kids-ified on the first night. My row-mates were another adorable family from right in Las Vegas. A mom, sister and the coolest 12-year old girl I’ve ever met. And not just coolest at age 12…she’s likely cooler than anyone reading this right now. This pre-pubescent Blockhead plays in two rock bands. She dabbles in drums, bass and sings if the mood strikes. And she knows all the words to not only the old, novelty-ridden NK songs, but to the entire 10 album as well. I was impressed. And she was super pumped to be there. But more so that her dad hadn’t joined them since the impending crotch-grabs would have embarrassed her in his presence. I was on the fence, since there was a high probability that her dad was hot. But hey, I can respect the pre-teen predisposition to mortification.
After rushing back two rows for a photo-op with a local celebrity (google Frank Marino) I settled once again into my seat only to hop back up as the lights dimmed and the screams lifted.The adrenaline rush that comes right before your favorite band hits the stage is unmatched by anything I’ve experienced. Even if you know the set-list by heart and can mirror the ad libs that come with the performance. It’s a rush of shared experience and common interest. The show began by illuminating the guys at the back of the stage, in all their dapper glory. I joined the other thousands of women (and handful of dutiful husbands and gorgeous gays) in bouncing up and down uncontrollably as the guys slid, sang and sauntered all over the stage. Finally the time came for the lights to crash off and for us to guess where the five of them might pop up. As the lights returned, we noticed them spread out just between the upper and lower sections. The girls in the cheap seats were getting just as good of a view as the VIPers in the first few rows. I was not, however. I was somewhere in between and was pouting rather visibly until I noticed Joey balancing on the ledge and coming my way. I mean, directly toward me. I looked at the girls around me and we all screamed in giddy (and nostalgic) anticipation as we watched him teeter, grabbing girls’ hands for support. When he finally appeared in front of me, I joined the others in reaching up my hand in assistance, watched him grab that of my neighbor to the left, and then my neighbor to the right. Skipping right over my out-stretched and practically pleading fingers. Ouch, Mr. McIntyre. Ouch.
I managed to recover from that blow and continue bopping to the delightful set list. I laughed out loud at Joe singing the wrong verse in “Summertime” (maybe a little out of spite) and even harder at Donnie singing the wrong verse as a result. They laughed it off, knowing that we don’t expect them to be perfect and Lorde knows I hope they don’t expect us to be. As a group, we Blockheads are kind of a hot mess. But would we have it any other way? I was looking around during a ballad and noticed a familiar face a couple of rows back. I did a double take and realized that yes, it was Andrea Barber. Better known as Kimmy Gibbler from Full House. You heard me. I saw Kimmy Gibbler at a NKOTB concert. That is literally the most 90s thing that has ever happened to me. Until I tweeted the interaction to Rider Strong, that is. And Andrea replied with a “Hell Yeah!” So I guess you could say that things with me and the 90s are getting pretty serious.
After trying (unsuccessfully) to remove all of the confetti from my bra, I headed out of the venue and up to the room to charge my poor, dying phone. I was jet-lagged but not quite ready for bed so I responded to a tweet from another solo BH and met her downstairs to wander the strip, making her the third new friend in Vegas. See how quickly that happens? And people say it’s hard to make friends as an adult. All you need to do is throw an aging boyband in the mix. Simple.
The strip was bright, loud and hot. And my jet-lag caught up to me quickly. My new friend and I trekked back into Planet Hollywood and I managed to lose her in the bathroom before going to bed. Like I said. Jet lag. The roommates were busy being fabulous at the official After Party, no doubt booty-shaking with Donnie or a Knight brother. And I drifted into ear-ringing dreamland.