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)!