Thursday, July 31, 2008

American Idol Auditions

That's right... I auditioned for American Idol... Just another thing to add to my resume... "American Idol Contestant", which is true, but probably deceptive, since some of the biggest morons in the world also can say that they were American Idol contestants.

So, here's a story of how it all went down. In order to audition for American Idol, you first had to obtain a number. So, on Sunday (July 27) morning, I went with my cousin, Chantel, and her mom, Claudia, to the Energy Solutions arena in Salt Lake City. We got there at 6:30 in the morning, which put us probably the 1000th in line out of 6,000 or so. They gave us a wristband and a ticket for our reserved seat/place in line.

We came back on Tuesday (July 29). They told everyone to come back at 5:00 AM. But the thing they don't tell you is, you really don't need to be there until noon. The reason they want you there early is to film all the crowd shots. Also, it gives them time so they can pick out who the freaks are.

At 8:00 AM, they finally started letting us all into the arena. Upon entrance, the filmed the crowd for about an hour and a half or so. They filmed us doing the same thing over and over again. They'd have someone in the audience say "This is American Idol" or "Welcome to Salt Lake City" or "Welcome to Happy Valley" (which I just about refused to say), and then we'd all have to scream and cheer, destroying our voices.

Ryan Seacrest finally showed up (which was a miracle, since, apparently, he was recently bitten by a shark), and then we had to do the stupid crowd shots over and over again, but this time, he was saying all the lines. All the girls were fainting and trying to give him hugs and stuff. All for a guy who is only like 5'6" and weighs maybe 140.

Then the auditions started. Your initial audition was in front of everyone. They set up 10 judges tables on the arena floor. Four people at a time came down and stood in front of a judges' table. Then, they called you forward one at a time, and they had you sing until they said, "Stop". Sometimes, they would ask people to sing again if they wanted to hear you sing a different style. After you were finished singing, they would tell you either, "Yes" or "No". Those that were told "Yes" walked out the "Winner's Exit" and stayed for the next round. Those that were told "No", had their wristbands cut off and were shown to the "Non-Winner's Exit". From what I could see, it looked like maybe 2 or 3 percent of the people that auditioned were put through to the 2nd round (Randy, Paula, and Simon were at the 3rd round).

We waited for FOREVER. I was starting to get a headache because I was so hungry, so I went out to get a hot dog at the concessions. I waited in line for an hour, and I was two people away from ordering when Claudia called me and told me that it was our turn to line up for the tryout. So, I waited all that time for NOTHING.

Finally, we got on the floor. It was interesting, because once we got down there I wasn't nervous at all. I was just so sick of waiting that I pretty much just wanted to get it over with. So, finally we had our chance to sing. My cousin, Chantel (a.k.a. Channi) did a really good job. She sang, "Can't Help Falling In Love".

Then it was MY turn. I sang, "Now and Forever" by Richard Marx. There were two judges, one British lady, and another Asian-looking lady. The British lady didn't seem too impressed, but the Asian lady liked me a lot, I could tell. After I sang, instead of calling for the next person, they talked with each other behind their clipboards. Then they asked me to sing something else. My mind went totally blank, and they told me I could think about what I'd sing while the next person went. Then, I decided to sing Brian McKnight's "One" (It's funny, because I never practiced it really, but it came to me as something good to sing. A couple weeks previously, my friend, Rhett Richins, and I would sing it as a joke while warming up for the musical, Little Women, mainly to annoy one of the other actors).

Once we were finally all done singing, they told us that they weren't going to put any of us through to the next round. As I was leaving, they told me that they like my voice, but that I needed to work on my stage presence. I'm not sure how I could have shown my stage presence in a matter of 30 seconds, but I did my best. After the auditions, we were all SO HUNGRY, so we went to the Gateway and ate at Biaggi's... one of my new favorite restaurants. Overall it was a fun experience. I know what I'd do differenlty next time, and it gives me a year to work on my "stage presence". If anything, I had fun hanging out with Claudia and Channi. Better luck next year, I guess.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

The Alarm Clock

So all of us are different when it comes to sleeping. Some of us are heavy sleepers and could sleep through an earthquake. Some of us are light sleepers and wake up to a pin dropping. Some of us snore, some of us drool, etc. I know that none of us are perfect, but I have a bone to pick with one particular individual.

Many of you noticed on my Facebook profile a few days ago that I had put "Steve Plowman wonders whose freakin' alarm keeps going of at 4:00 AM... SHUT IF OFF ALREADY!" as my status. Well, here's the thing. So, a few weeks ago, and 6 or 7 times since then, I was trying to sleep (one of my favorite things in the world), and I was awakened by a beep... beep... beep... beep... beep, beep... beep, beep... beep, beep... beep, beep... beep, beep... beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep... you know what I'm talking about. One of THOSE kinda alarm clocks. At first I thought it was the dudes above me, so I banged on the ceiling, and the alarm turned off shortly thereafter. Thinking it was coming from THEM, I went back to sleep.

A few days later, it happened again, only the alarm didn't turn off when I banged on the celing. It kept on beeping, for like 20 minutes! My brother, who usually never hears the alarm, but hears me banging on the ceiling, went upstairs and rang the door bell and asked the dudes above us to turn off their alarm. But... it wasn't them! So, I called the dudes that live next to me (I know it was 4:00 AM, but I was TICKED!). They said they couldn't hear the alarm. So, I just tried to go back to sleep.

The next day, I went around to all of the apartments on my side of the complex and asked if anyone was getting up at 4:00 AM and wasn't shutting off their alarm. They all said, "No" and that they would let me know should they find out anything.

Then... on Sunday, I was walking to Church, and one of the dudes that lives next door (Dave) told me that the other night, after I called them at 4:00 AM and asked about the alarm, they finally heard it and found that it was their roommate's alarm. I won't tell you who it is, but I'll say that his name starts with a "W" and rhymes with Beston. Anyway, so now I know who the freakin' alarm clock belongs to. And believe you me, they I will what it takes to make sure that they suffer (You know, in a non-threatening, revengeful kinda way)!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Mexican Cruise on the Carnival Elation

An update on my life wouldn't be complete without mentioning the Mexican cruise I went on right after Graduation. It was pretty much the best vacation EVER. Accordingly some of the best things about the cruise:

Tara, Rachael, Dale, Cohan, me, Brodie, Whitney, and Leisa in the Mikado Lounge

The first day of the cruise, we noticed these four girls several times on the ship (they were stalking us). Finally, at the evening show, we saw them looking for a place, so we just motioned for them to sit by us. We were all instant friends. And what do you know? They all live in Provo.

On the second day of the cruise, we were on the deck and there was a South African chick asking for volunteers. We all went to volunteer without knowing that we were entering the hairy chest competition. It was pretty embarassing... they had us all do this sexy dance, take off our shirt, and then go up on stage. I figured it was going to be awkward anyway, so I had fun with it. The crowd like it enough that I ended up winning second place, even though my chest really isn't that hairy.

I ended up winning the "Name That Song" competition. They played a list of 20 songs. You got a point for guessing the song title, and one for the singer. You could also get extra points if you sang, danced, or did something else embarassing... right, Dale?

This is pic of the boys at dinner with our servers, Sau (from Myanmar) and Edmond (from the Phillipines). They were really funny. The dinners were incredible. Every night we had the choice of some great meals: Salmon, Steak, Duck, Lamb, Veal, etc. We could also pick all the appetizers we wanted every night. We each had about 10 shrimp every night. We also tried a bunch of fruist, escargot, etc. The desserts were awesome too. The other food on the ship was great... they had all-you-can-eat burger bars, pasta, breakfast, etc. It was so great to never have to worry about food.

During Karaoke, Whitney did such a good job that they asked her to be in the cruise ship variety show. She played the role of Aretha Franklin. She sang "Respect", of course.

One day, we just decided to wear our bathrobes all day... with swimming suits under, of course. It was a ton of fun... and, as the cruise went on, we saw more and more people doing it.

Yeah, I ended up throwing up twice while parasailing. Can't say I'm EVER gonna do it again.

While in Ensenada, we got to do some horseback riding. We went for about 30 minutes on the beach there. My horse was totally crazy so that had this Mexican kid named Abram stay walk alongside me the whole time. We crossed past a deal dolphin and seal... pretty crazy.

          This is a pic of us in front of La Bufadora. For those of you that don't speak Espanol... La Bufadora is Spanish for... The Bufadora... Actually it means blowhole. There's only three of 'em in the world (one in Australia, one in Ensenada, and one... somewhere else... I wasn't really listening). The blowhole is created when a bunch of water is trapped in a cave. As the water is trapped, it builds up a lot of pressure until, eventually, the water is blown through the cracks. It can rise up to 120 feet... pretty amazing

          Funny Quotes

          "So... are you guys on a cruise?" (Chick from Iowa that knows Dan Evans)

          "Ladies, and gentlemen... welcome, to the Mikado Lounge." (Stu)

          "Stick around for R-rated, adult humor." (Stu)

          "What time is it, Cohan?" "Holy Cow... it's 10:15" (Steve and Cohan)

          "Holy Crap, guys, we're on a cruise" (All)

          "There's nothing like karaoke... especially when it's from a naked guy in a bathrobe." (Jeff)

          Little Women

          If I haven't told you yet, I'm peforming in the musical, Little Women, at the Hale Center Theater in Orem. It's a ton of fun. It's being directed by Chris Clark and the music/choreography is by Korianne Orton-Johnson. The cast is amazing, most of them are MDT or acting majors at BYU. I'm playing the roles of John Brooke and Braxton Prendergast. Mr. Brooke is the tutor of Laurie, the neighbor. John marries Meg, the oldest of the March sisters. Braxton is the villain in Jo's operatic tragedies, which are probably the funnest part of the show. Here's a couple of pics:

          This is part of the operatic tragedy called: The Weekly Volcano Press

          Meg (Laurel Lowe) and Mr. Brooke (I) performing the song "More Than I Am"

          Monday, March 17, 2008

          St. Patrick's Day!

          So, I received an order to update my blog (Thanks, Dani). But in all honesty, it was needed. My family usually says they don't know what's going on in my life, so my friends are probably in the dark too. In honor of St. Patrick's Day, I've posted the following picture:

          This picture is actually from Halloween, where my buddy, Abe Neiderhauser, and I went to the ward party as two trees and a hammock. We did, however, get people that thought we were leprechauns... probably due to the beard I was growing for an upcoming musical (Christmas Carol). It seems interesting, however, that they ignored the hammock that we carried in between each other the whole night and the fact that people were sitting in it from time to time. I guess if people are going to pick a spot to sit, it would have to be in a hammock and in between two leprechauns, right? Go figure. Here's another pic from three years ago (hard to believe).

          The girls in Virginia (Liberty Square) invited us over for some green apple soda. After we had a burping contest that I'm pretty sure I dominated. Something you wanna brag about, right?

          Anyway, what else is new? Ah... Intramurals. So this week is the start of the intramurals tournaments at BYU. I'll be pretty busy; I'm currently on basketball, co-ed soccer (Ward Team), and inter tube water-polo teams. I think we should do pretty well. I'll have my hands full, that's for sure.

          It's hard to believe that I'm finally graduating from college next month. After a couple weeks of midterms, it feels like it shouldn't be that bad, but the Accounting program has always surprised me with how much "fun" things can become real fast.

          Meanwhile, I'm just enjoying life. I've started going country dancing in Provo about every other week. I've only dropped one girl so far, and luckily I didn't break her. I'm also trying to learn just about every Nickel Creek song on the guitar that I can. I was pretty stoked when I learned "When You Come Back Down" (probably the best song... EVER) yesterday.

          I'm proud to say, I'm reading books that aren't required of me right now. I've got about 50 pages left in President Gordon B. Hinckley's biography... an amazing book. I've got so much respect for him. What a perfect example of doing what's right no matter what. I think my next book will be Rich Dad, Poor Dad. That's been on the list of "To Read" for quite some time now.