Arcade Fire was in town Saturday night playing a “surprise” off-the-tour concert in Bushwick. Tickets went on sale earlier in the week for $45 and sold out minutes later, only to be resold on StubHub for $200 up to, rumor has it, $5,000 (as lead singer Win Butler later said at the show, if you had $5K to spend on tickets he has a nonprofit for Haiti, if anyone wanted to donate…). While I can’t say that I’ve never spent money on stupid stuff that make me happy ($500 for a bag I just HAVE to have even though the $$ comes out of my nonexistent New York “savings”? no problem!), I’m not particularly game for paying $200 for 1.5 hours of live music…especially since $150+ of that was going to scalpers. Or that’s what I told Olivier when he pinged me on GChat at 3pm Friday, definitley looking for someone to talk him off the concert cliff. But in the end, he took the plunge and bought the tickets, and we began our preparations Saturday afternoon to go to what the site advertised as a “dress-up/costumed” concert by “The Reflektors“. Did someone say costumes? Sorry, I love Arcade Fire…but this $200-a-ticket concert just got a WHOLE lot better:
Yup that’s us, Halloween circa 2009.
And 2011, as Little Red and the Big Bad Wolf.
So how could we possibly do a “Reflektors” “costume concert” justice? We discussed 20s-style suit/tie/dress with masks, like the band wore in their latest promotional video. Not really “us.” Then, joking about how James Franco *might* be there (I’m kind of in love even if he just *might* be interested in men and not women…and he showed up in their 22-minute long tongue-in-cheek Reflektors SNL skit), it came to us. We’d both wear these (depending on which way he swings if he didn’t pick one of us, he’d for SURE pick the other):
After downing a stiff Jack and Coke, we decided to take the subway from Chelsea to Bushwick. Olivier insisted we wear our costumes (signs and all) on the walk down 6th avenue to the L stop. While I’m all for dressing up with friends, it’s another thing to wear full-on costumes on the street on a random night. My inner introvert almost convinced me leaving the signs at home…but I sucked it up and we walked out the door.
I should have known. It’s a sign you’re in New York when people don’t look twice (or, rather, pretend not to look) at your giant Alpaca-fur hats and neon pink-and-orange xoxoxoxoxs #JamesFrancoIsHot fan posters. Is it totally un-PC to say I felt — just for a moment — what it must be like to be a mentally-unstable street person? When we got to Bushwick, we stopped for food. More out-of-the-corner-of-my-eye (but I’m too cool to stare at you) looks.
Just eatin my pizza.
At the warehouse, the line wound around the street with banana suits, ballgowns, suits & ties. But I think the level of craziness of our “costumes” stole the show (yes, pre-concert Arcade Fire, the show is all about the costumes). But what more appropriate for a Grammy award-winning band that goes by a code name for a concert in a dumpy Brooklyn warehouse, dresses in bunny suits, and buddies up with Michael Cera and Zach Galifianakis? The couples behind and in front of us went to a nearby liquor store and bought us all beers. When we finally popped the bottles and were drinking from our paper bags (do you sense a theme to this post?) quietly on the side of the dark street, three cops popped from behind a car and grabbed the group in front of us, confiscating their brews and walking them to their patrol cars (how Olivier and I were not their drunk tank targets amazes me). For what. To protect the kiddos who shouldn’t be out at 10pm anyway from seeing a couple of adults with beers? In France, where Olivier is from, drinking outside is TOTALLY LEGAL. The rationale behind this puritan American law reminds me of one of my parents’ favorite reasonings for telling me “no”: “Because we said so.” In any case, tossed our 40-ouncers and piled into the 90+ degrees humid concert hall, shook our maracas (oh yes, we both had a pair of those too) and DANCED. And not caring if anyone was looking felt…GREAT: