Wednesday proved to be a struggle for me as I’d planned to wake up around 8 to get my belongings together and move into the city for the rest of the week. Of course, I overslept and ran into a few road bumps (i.e. no cabs pick up in Brooklyn), but managed to get into Manhattan around 11. After dropping off my bags at the Hilton, I made my way over to Canal Street to meet with Emily and her mother. By some miracle I was able to find them in the thick crowd and bustled madness. We spent the next couple of hours perusing through knock-off stores at clothes and shoes all along Canal until we were almost positive we’d seen everything worth seeing. When we got hungry, we grabbed some delicious cart food. Chicken and lamb over rice. Delicious.
We hopped on the subway over to Loehmann’s near Greenwich Village and then walked over to Union Square to scrounge around Nordstrom Rack. We’d worn ourselves out after the Rack, so we journeyed back over to the Hilton near Times Square where Emily’s family is staying. Before pulling ourselves together to go to our play (!!!!), we hit up Happy Hour at the top floor of the Hilton. I ordered my first and (hopefully) only $15 cocktail (yikes!) and we snacked on some delicious happy hour foods. After we filled up our tummies, we went back down to the room to change and get cleaned up to go see ‘How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying’ starring the one and only Daniel Radcliffe.
If you’ve spent at least two hours talking to me, chances are you’ve heard me talk about Harry Potter. Whether or not I’ve gone into detail about why the series means so much to me, it’s pretty easy to recognize that it’s a big part of my life. I can bust out HP Trivia in a snap and I’ve been to every midnight premiere of both the books and films since my parents let me stay out after 10 pm. One of the biggest influences on my want to travel to NYC over Christmas break was so I could watch DanRad play Finch in ‘How to Succeed…’ since Darren Criss will be taking over for him come January. When I received two tickets to the play for my birthday, I was thrilled beyond measure. Excuse me as I sound like a pre-teen fangirl, but I’d been dreaming about meeting DanRad since I was 11 years old. These tickets were my key to make that dream come true.
So you can only imagine my excitement and anticipation the entire day before heading to ‘How to Succeed…’. Time went by extremely slow but when it was finally time to watch the play, all I wanted was to freeze time. Sitting about 50 feet from the man that I’d idolized from my time as a young girl on until my adulthood… I was awestruck. And certainly star-struck.
As for meeting him, I had a plan to speed out of the theatre as soon as the curtain fell so we could secure our spots at the stage exit door. After the final bow, Emily and I nearly sprinted out to the street. Somewhere in the frenzy of people, Emily and I were separated with her on one side of the barricade aisle and I on the other. This was a problem since she was carrying the only camera capable of flash. I managed to make it to the front of the barricade on my own and grabbed tight of the metal bar to brace myself for any wave of crazed and shoving fans.
About half an hour passed before we saw anyone come out of the exit. One of the first was John Larroquette. He was very friendly and stopped to sign every piece of paper in front of him. He actually made eye-contact with me when I talked to him and was very appreciative and conversational with the fans.
Dan emerged shortly after John. He was tiny, like a little elf. His hair was still slicked back from the show and he seemed exhausted and frazzled and rushed. He started signing and taking photos on the opposite end of the aisle, but made his way through pretty quickly. Once he reached my side, he seemed even more rushed. And as hard as I tried amongst the swarm of shoving and yelling fans, I did not get a photo or an autograph. He was literally inches from me and I got nothin’. I was too frozen to speak actual words. I completely forgot how to function as a human being. I’m still kicking myself for that.
Emily managed to grab his autograph, but I skulked halfway back to the hotel. I shouldn’t get to upset about a celebrity that will not remember my face for 15 seconds, but it felt like part of my childhood was instantly killed. I’d been building up this grand event in my mind for half of my life and it ended up being a very disappointing encounter. He wasn’t as friendly and gracious as I think he should have been. It may have been his awkwardness, but he was very one-worded. He almost seemed annoyed that he had to come out to sign autographs and “play nice” for the fans. I couldn’t help but feel like he wanted to get out of there as quickly as possible. And as thrown-off as I was about his demeanor, I couldn’t shake off the disappointment I’d developed in myself for missing such an easy opportunity to at least exchange a few words with him. The only comfort I could give myself was “We’ll try again tomorrow…”
As a pick-me-up and a late-night treat, we spent some time admiring Times Square at night and then ordered a heaping slice of strawberry cheesecake to eat back at the hotel. We fell right asleep the minute our heads hit our pillows.
(I’m a day behind, but after today I can’t possible manage to write another novel. I’ll get back on track tomorrow!)