Braving Brooklyn

Last Thursday night at the Cine Magic Riverfront StudiosSamsung celebrated the launch of Milk Music’s new streaming music service and partnership with ADD52. Signing up for the event, I didn’t really know what to expect. All that I was told about it was that the event would feature a showcase of musical performances by up-and-coming artists through the ADD52 program and an exciting A-list headlining performance. One of my bosses informed me that Passion Pit was rumored to play but I had no way of knowing for sure. Either way, I was excited to check it out!

image001The invite

Getting to the event was a bit stressful because I left my apartment 20 minutes before the event was set to begin only to realize that it was being held in Brooklyn. On my way there I considered turning around and going home because as we crossed over the bridge into Brooklyn things began to look a little sketchy. I thought I was in the wrong place until we pulled up to a building with a slew of people outside and flashing blue, pink, green and yellow lights. I checked in with the press, was given a wrist band and walked on in. I was pretty nervous because I had no idea what to expect. To enter I walked under a light up circle entrance which then led me into a room that resembled a basketball court, with gratified walls and headphone stations. My first thought was, holy shit I am really in Brooklyn now. It was one of those ‘Toto, I’ve got a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore’ moments.

photo 2As I continued farther down the room I eventually ended up in a huge warehouse-like space that housed a stage, two open bars, more headphone stations, and servers with champagne and appetizers. I watched three performances by Tayyib Ali, 3D Na’Tee, and Love Dollhouse and I promise I didn’t just make up those names, they are real believe it or not. They all are ADD52 artists who Russell Simmons has taken under his wing. His publicist described them to me as his “babies”. They were interesting performances to say the least. My favorite was 3D Na’Tee’s, though she was a little hardcore, but I mean after all she is a rapper. I got to meet Russell Simmons and take a picture of him for Guest of a Guest’s website. He was very friendly and animated. He reminded me of a nice, hip, not ready to be a grandpa, but still a grandpa, kind of guy. photo 3Russell Simmons

Out of no where a group of drummers came marching into the room singing and dancing and drumming up a storm. They opened up a side of the wall that turned into an enormous door and had everyone follow them outside. We were led down a winding path, lined with huge colorful balls of light, and then into another gigantic open studio room. Inside there was a big stage with bright lights flashing everywhere, a huge open bar with a beautiful view of the city all lit up, and a roped off VIP section.

photo 5photo 6Russell Simmons and Steve Rifkind made a short speech on stage before releasing the never before seen commercial for Milk Music’s ad-free radio service. Then Niykee Heaton kicked off the performances with her single “Bad Intentions“. I had no idea who she was or that she was known, but I quickly learned that every guy knew her and loved her, even the guy who I wanted to love me.

photo 10Niykee Heaton

For her next song she brought a rapper on stage to sing with her. I knew he must have been famous because the crowd went crazy but I didn’t know who he was because I’m not good at identifying rappers by their faces, I only know their music. He went on to sing a few songs by himself, but because he was singing songs like “Mercy” and “I Don’t Like”, that I know Kanye West sing, I couldn’t figure out who he was and I wasn’t even sure if he was famous anymore.

photo 13Turns out, this mysterious rapper was indeed famous and he was actually Pusha T. When I discovered it later that night while lying in bed I felt really stupid. It makes sense though because he is featured in all those songs, just not the main rapper. 

I had a similar experience when the next artist came on stage. The first song he sang was “Simple Things“, which I am currently obsessed with, but I thought that because he wasn’t introduced and I wasn’t told Miguel would be at the event, that it couldn’t really be Miguel. When he went on to play “Adorn” I freaked out and immediately pulled out my phone to Google search Miguel. When the images loaded I found myself looking at a picture of the man standing six feet in front of me. I’m a huge Miguel fan so the fact that I was watching a surprise performance by him seemed unreal.

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Miguel

It was very upsetting when Miguel left the stage, and my secret crush (that was standing next to me) left to go to the bar. Everything was made better though when Passion Pit entered the stage.

I had a front row view of Passion Pit’s performance. I had some how weaseled my way up to the front of the stage. They were great in concert but, at the time, my mind was elsewhere. I was scanning the room looking for the group of 6’foot tall guys who all looked like beautiful models.

photo 29photo 26Passion Pit

I still can’t understand it but for some odd reason, at the time, I thought it would be a good idea to leave 20 minutes early. Turns out it wasn’t a good idea because all I did was leave to go home and get in bed which was way less exciting than listening to Passion Pit. Also, it turns out that my crush looked like a model because he is a model. Also missed out on that one. So, I have a few regrets from the night but I cannot complain because overall it an awesome night!

NG

Events of the Rich & Not Famous

Last Tuesday I thought I was going to be going to the best, absolute coolest event for work. It was Bvlgari’s celebration of 130 years and I eagerly signed up for it expecting celebrities galore. Well what I got was cool but was more like a bunch of rich people. Turns out the private party was only for Bvlgari VIP members, and that doesn’t include celebrities. It was extremely cool to be in the closed off store with music, free champagne, and appetizers but I had such high hopes of seeing famous people that I was kind of bummed.

Just about every other intern that I work with has been to an event with celebrities, but some how I keep picking all the events with a bunch of rich people and no celebrities anywhere.

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At this event I sort of just walked around the room awkwardly because I had no one to hang with and everyone was busy chatting with their friends. I think I confused people because they were probably thinking who is this young girl and why is she here alone? That was another thing, I was clearly the youngest person in the room, which I hated. I think the water here in NY makes you look older because I swear, even some of the kids that I know who are still in high school look older than me. What is the deal with that?! So I grabbed a glass of champagne to show people that I wasn’t 12 years old. To be honest though, I really just wanted a glass of champagne and in my head that was a good excuse.

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It was the first time I had even been in the store and I must say it was extremely beautiful, and also that I’ll probably never go back in because I don’t have that kind of mula to spend. There were vases of white flowers on the display cases, thousands of dollars worth of gorgeous diamonds behind glass and soothing jazz music in the background. I made the best of my some what awkward situation by taking in all of my surroundings and people watching. Oh boy, was people watching fun.

The best person to watch was the one older woman, probably in her late 60s or so, who had so much plastic surgery that she could hardly move her face. Her face was tighter than my skinniest skinny jeans, her lips gave her a not-so-flattering Donald Duck look, and her boobs were so large and fake that I thought if I came too close and bumped into her one would pop. Of course I asked her if she wanted me to take her picture because I knew I’d have to share the sight with my friends and family. I will not post the picture on here for privacy purposes but just know it’s a great pic.

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After an hour, and 200 pictures, I left the store and walked home and met up with Chelsea and Shannon, my roommates, who were in the area. I walked along the park for two miles until I made it back to my apartment. One of my favorite things about New York is all the walking that I do. It’s a good little work out that keeps me entertained the whole way.

As Chelsea and I walked in the apartment the strangest thing happened. Tulus, one of the doormen, stopped me dead in my tracks. He handed me his hat and said, “wear it, all the girls love it!”. Strange, I know… So I hesitantly put the hat on and tried very hard to hide my look of befuddlement, as Chelsea laughed her ass off. At that exact time more people than I have ever seen walked into the apartment, as I stood by the front door in my fancy black dress and doorman hat. I jokingly welcomed people to the apartment, but not all of them thought it was as funny as Chelsea and I thought it was.

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Do you think I can pull off the doorman look?

Tulus came back from greeting everyone and went on a rampage about how the daughter of the Discovery channel loves to wear his hat and what not. He insisted that we take a picture together and when Chelsea’s phone died he excitedly suggested we use my big Canon camera, that happened to be draped over my shoulder. The elevator man, our friend Astrit, must have heard the commotion by the door and he came by to see what was going on. Then he too pulled out his cell phone and started taking pictures of Tulus and I.

After our short photo shoot Chelsea and I went up to the room and died of laughter as soon as we were in the privacy of our home.

NG

A Weekend We’ll Never Forget & Never Remember

My roommates and I had all been eagerly waiting for this weekend. It was our first weekend together as working women in New York City. No early alarms needed to be set, no long hour days – just relaxing, eating, drinking and of course some partying here and there. Exactly what we all needed after a long week.

It began with a lazy Saturday afternoon of tanning on the rooftop, transforming ourselves from white ghosts to golden goddesses. At least that’s what we were going for…

We were resting up for our big night out that night. One of my roommates was having a few of her high school guy friends over at the apartment.

They came armed with four cases of beer and a very concerned looking elevator man, our friend, Astrit.

We sipped wine and drank beer on the rooftop until the sun went down. It was like something straight out of Gossip Girl or a movie. A perfect view of Central Park in the background and the hum of summer songs playing from the speaker. At that moment in time I was so perfectly happy and 100% content. I thought to myself I could do this every weekend for the rest of my summers. Although, later we found out we weren’t really allowed to be up there drinking, soo that kind of kills my plans but I think our elevator friends like us enough to let us get away with it another once or twice. We shall see!

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The 11G Core Four that actually live in the apartment

The party eventually moved back down to the apartment were we played some games and mingled more with our new friends. One of the guys there played the piano for us in between games. It was the craziest thing, all he did was listen to a song and then he could play it perfectly on the piano. Even if was his first time hearing it, he mimicked it absolutely perfectly. The coolest thing he played was Timber by Pitbull. I didn’t even know that was something that could be played on a piano. It sounded exactly like it too!

Once the clock struck midnight we knew we had to make some moves. Not all of us made it out of the apartment at the same time. Some left much later and some never left at all.

My roommate, Shannon, and I left to go to this bar with some of the newer guys that showed up late. The rest were going to meet us later. It is incredibly hard to get a large number of people all out of the house at the same time. I’m learning how slowly people move as a group.

Shannon and I waited on the sidewalk, with the other guys, waiting for everyone to get downstairs. One of the guys thought it would be funny to start a pull up contest on the construction bars above our head. As soon as some people walked by and the guy asked if they wanted to join his pull up contest. That is when I made a quick exit to the side of the road and hailed a taxi cab faster than I have ever hailed a cab in my life. Within 45 seconds of the first pull up Shannon and I were in a cab on our way to Bounce Sporting Club to meet up with her brother.

The club was elegant, upscale and was filled with so many well dressed people. I got to meet Shannon’s brother for the first time and I also got to make an incredibly embarrassing first impression of myself. Here’s why. Lately I have been working out and trying to work on my arms. I know how bad that sounds, but I’m not doing it in a I-want-to-get-ripped kind of way. All I want is a little definition because right now I have none of that going on. So, when I go out I sometimes notice peoples arms. Well… I noticed Shannon’s brothers arms because they were big. Jokingly I said to Shannon, your brother does arms at the gym, which she then proceeded to turn around and tell him how I too do arms and I thought he had nice arms. I immediately covered my wimpy arms in embarrassment as he looked at them to see if you could tell I had been working out, which of course you couldn’t. He laughed about my comment and I secretly wanted to die. Great first impression, ugh.

Shannon tells me I had a great time the rest of the night. Callie and Chelsea were jealous I went clubbing but basically I really didn’t. At least memory wise… Whoops! It happens to the best of us. Too. Many. Pineapple. Vodkas.

I got my first business card from a guy. It was a new experience for me. Shannon said I denied this guy on three separate occasions so he finally just gave me his card with the hopes I would call. She said I just wasn’t having it with him, which I don’t know why that was the case because turns out he’s actually a cute somewhat successful real man. Perfect, I threw away my chances.

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Poor Shannon, he tried so hard to get us to sit at his table with all his cute guy friends but god only knows why I insisted that I would not go near or anywhere with him. Soo we never met any of his cute friends. Yup, there I go again throwing away more chances.

It started to get late and so we went home. Except I left a little earlier, got a few slices of pizza and then brought it all back to the apartment to share with everyone. I ordered some weird chicken calzone type thing so I guess I lose that earlier point for being normal.

 

Sunday morning was rough but we all made it through with lots of water and delicious food from 72nd Street Bagel.

NG

Stanton Social Escapade: The $20 Cab Ride Should Have Stopped Us

74 blocks South and approximately 8 blocks East is about how far we had to travel to get to this bar, Stanton Social. It was a very interesting night, to be more specific, Monday night. But let me start from the beginning.

Yesterday my three roommates started their first day of work. To celebrate, we we’re thinking we’d all go out and get dinner and drinks. Chelsea and I got a bit sidetracked by the endless shopping in the Time Warner Center, soo our dinner plans sorta fell through. At around 10PM Chelsea and I were just sitting down for dinner and drinks at a sushi place, called Tenzan. We were shocked and excited to see that the mojitos were only $9 each, because in most other places cocktails are around $13. (It’s a sad day when a $9 drink seems cheap to you). We clearly had to get a drink though because we were celebrating Chelsea’s first day at the law firm!

BTW, if you go you must get the mango shrimp roll, add eel and the Philadelphia roll. Yes, I realize that last night I was being a bit particular and weird, because who gets a mango shrimp roll and casually adds eel… well, I do, but it turned out to be quite yummy!!

ImageSippin’ and Surfin’

The drinks were great, the food was delicious but once it got to around 11:30 we knew it was time to navigate our way down to Stanton Social. I think I aged a bit in the taxi ride because it took so long to get there. Ya know, 74 blocks down isn’t exactly around the corner, by ANY means.

When we got to the bar we were alarmed by how few people were there but then we quickly realized that it was a Monday night and we were in the restaurant section. So as we walked upstairs we could hear the booms and feel the reverberations from the music. We knew we were in the right spot.

If I had to sum up this bar in two words I would say ‘ghetto fab’. It was fab but also definitely ghetto in a strangely somewhat classy way. Chelsea and I made the best out of it though and made our way to a table in the back with free drinks. In New York the word ‘free’ has a whole new meaning. It’s not the same as the ‘free’ in North Carolina or anywhere else because ‘free’ here is so damn valuable. You don’t pass up free stuff here and you take as much as you can get when you’re handed the opportunity. Although when it comes to drinking I’m not sure if that’s a great mindset…

We danced in the crowded section but then slowly made our way to the open section near the bar. We continued to dance with not a care in the world. The two of us were having the best time on our own. Chelsea doesn’t listen to much ghetto music in CA so since we’ve been here I’ve been playing some more of the ghetto music that she has missed out on. It paid off because she knew a lot of the songs that came on. (I’m a great influence/teacher)

We made friends with some Quay character and his friend, but ditched them quickly after. So… not really sure if you could actually call them our friends… We left them and got a cab home because we both had work the next day early in the morning.

I tried to drag my sluggish body out of bed this morning when my alarm went off but I couldn’t do it. Snooze was my best friend for a while.

I was proud of myself though because I was on schedule and was set to leave on time for work. Everything was great, until… I opened up my bag from the night before only to discover that my small wallet was missing from its place. Gone! Like it was never even there. I frantically turned the bag upside down and looked in it all over, hoping that maybe it was some sort of mean magic trick and the wallet would eventually fall out of the bag from thin air. Unfortunately that’s not how it worked.

My next step was to cancel my credit and debit card, but not before I wallowed for a little. I have never lost anything, so the fact that my wallet was missing this morning was, and still is, very troubling to me. One of two things must have happened. Either one of the ghetto fab people swiped my wallet from my bag or I dropped my wallet in the cab without realizing it. I believe the latter to be true because there were zero charges on either of my cards. That would have to make someone a very kind robber and that just isn’t a thing.

I lost a lot of important things last night so I am hoping and praying that some miracle will occur and I will get my wallet back. But we all know that probably isn’t the case…

So, if anyone sees a small blue Tory Burch wallet hit me up because that holds part of my life, which is now floating somewhere in NYC.

NG