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Our names are Amanda & Megan. If you're reading this right now we can only assume that you are a fan of Straight No Chaser! We have had so many adventures in our journeys to see them that we needed a place to write them all down. Cue blog! We can only imagine the adventures will continue and we can't wait to see where they lead us.

8.24.2011

PBS Taping


August has been a very special month for Amanda and myself, to say the very least. The beginning of August we were named the Chasers of the Month. I just wanted to take a moment to say that we are both truly honored to hold this title. Straight No Chaser brings so much joy to both of our lives, and we love doing everything we do for them. We were both shocked when the announcement was made that we were Co-Chasers of the Month. We never expected recognition for what we do, but we take pride in the title and hope that we won’t disappoint as the August Chasers of the Month! Alright, that being said, it is now time to tell you about one of the craziest weeks of our lives.

      
It is safe to say that the week prior to the PBS taping was torturous (like most weeks leading up to a Straight No Chaser event). Both Amanda and I were working, and I had a few interviews for jobs for the upcoming school year. Neither of us wanted to deal with the real world (although I knew those job interviews would be beneficial in the long run). Instead we wanted all of our focus to be on our preparations for our spontaneous trip to Atlantic City.  Prior to our last trip to the Jersey Shore we had no intentions of returning before Labor Day Weekend. The announcement of the PBS taping and a small amount of arm twisting from Marna and Tara, however, brought our minds right back to Harrah’s a lot sooner than we had expected.  Due to the spontaneity of the decision to go to Harrah’s on August 17th, we had some other events planned around the same time that resulted in an extremely musical week which was so much fun, but which also allowed for very little sleep. It was totally worth it!

We started off our musical week with our Friday adventure to Hyannis. This had become routine in our summer schedule at this point. We had to go see and support our local a cappella group, Hyannis Sound. (We would also be attending their final Hyannis show the Friday following SNC, as well as their final show of the summer in Chatham on Saturday. Despite our busy week, we knew we had to support these guys as well. There was no way that being extremely overtired would stop us from attending their last two shows of the summer.) I then had to work Saturday morning (but that clearly wouldn’t stop us from doing everything we wanted) and then we headed to the Maroon 5 and Train concert that evening. Both of us agreed that this concert was amazing, but it was kind of weird to be listening to live music that wasn’t being performed a cappella. It was decided that this concert would be practice for the concert we would be attending on Tuesday night…the one and only, Ke$ha. We had purchased tickets to this show months prior to deciding to attend the PBS taping. It was literally hours before we would be getting on a plane to see Straight No Chaser, and pretty much the exact opposite of the experience we would be having the next day. If you don’t know who Ke$ha is, she is pretty much the trashiest female artist out there, but we love her. She sings songs like Tik Tok  and Your Love is my Drug. I suggest you look her up just for shear entertainment value and so that you get a good idea of how drastically different our two back to back days of music actually were.

At the Ke$ha concert, everyone was dressed (or maybe not so dressed is the proper way of saying it) in neon colors and glitter. It is safe to say that we probably stuck out the most for our lack of outrageous attire…which is weird in and of itself because typically we’re the ones sticking out at an SNC concert due to our glowing apparel. And the tables had turned. Logically we discussed how a Ke$ha concert would be the perfect venue to promote SNC…too bad we had dropped the ball as Chasers of the Month and not brought our promo supplies. We clearly would have made so many new Chasers that night…if only we had known.

Although the Ke$ha concert was amazing, throughout the evening we could not stop ourselves from thinking about Straight No Chaser. In merely a few hours we would be starting our adventures to see them again, and we were so excited!  We went to bed that night with much anticipation for what the following day would bring. It wasn’t long before we found out. A meager four hours after drifting off to sleep, our alarms were blaring in our ears, the sweet reminder that we had an early flight to Atlantic City. Although our eyes were barely open at four o’clock that morning, we still believed that taking this trip was the best decision we had made. I can only imagine how miserable we would have been that day if we hadn’t been at the Straight No Chaser concert.

At 8:00 am our plane departed from Logan Airport and we were Philadelphia bound! We didn’t have any travel delays and actually landed in the Philly airport earlier than expected. We only had carry-on luggage due to the briefness of our trip, so we found a nice blue bench outside the airport to rest upon as we waited for our Chaser escort to Atlantic City. (Yes, these were the same Chasers who had perpetuated some arm twisting to get us here). We waited patiently and tried not to look too much like hobos. Luckily our excitement kept us from passing out on that not so comfortable blue bench.

Tara and Marna had some errands to run after they picked us up from the airport so we had the opportunity to see what New Jersey was really like. Go figure, it’s not that much different than Massachusetts…so weird. Like Amanda always likes to point out, it’s so weird to think about people living outside Massachusetts. Apparently they do things similarly to us (with a few minor vernacular differences that we have come to expect…not everyone can be as cool as us after all). After our errands we headed to Marna’s house where she was nice enough to let us freshen up. Obviously we were unable to sleep despite our exhaustion and decided to just get ready for the show instead.

When we got to Harrah’s we met up with some Chasers for a preshow dinner. It was apparent that everyone was super excited for the evening, and there was a lot of speculating about what would happen during the show. We headed over to the Concert Venue early (per our instructions). As we entered the venue, I was instantly overwhelmed by the amount of cameras that were around the room. There were apparent changes to the venue and it was hard to take them all in at once. We went to find our seats (which luckily we already had a general idea of where they were…or else I may never have found my seat with all of those distractions) and discovered that John, Terry, and Antoinette (the Oldest Chaser) were our seat neighbors! As we settled in our seats and prepared for the show we heard a voice from behind us state, “oh it is them.” She then said to us “you’re the girls who write the blog. I wasn’t sure if it was you until I saw your leis.” Unfortunately I didn’t catch her name (or maybe I just don’t remember it after all of that excitement), Her name was Sue & I just wanted to take a moment to thank her for all of the kind words she had about our blog and our writing talents. It really is appreciated.

Then it was time for the preshow productions to begin. PBS had some announcements they needed to make and they also took this opportunity to film the crowd. That was cool. We got to yell and cheer for SNC without them actually doing anything…so pretty much exactly how I conduct myself on a daily basis. The guys put on the best show I have seen by them EVER! They stepped it up and pulled out all of the stops. I am so proud of them! They did most of their Harrah’s show, performed a few key staples that we all love and enjoy from the fall tour, and ended with some Christmas music. Unfortunately we cannot give away too many details per PBS’ request, but I can guarantee you that the PBS special will be amazing! It was so cool to see how the show was put together. I can’t wait to see the final product when the PBS special airs.

The show was longer than a normal SNC concert at Harrah’s due to all of the production details and it was nearly 11 pm when we exited the Concert Venue. They guys were ever so gracious and still stuck around for their meet and greet even though it was late and they still had work they needed to do with PBS. The woman that had been sitting behind us during the show stopped us on our way out and asked us for some meet and greet tips. As good Chasers, we explained the best way to go about tackling the meet and greet line and how they could hang around after for pictures with the guys.

As we waited for the end of the line we had the opportunity to meet (or see…we we’re dead on our feet at that point and didn’t do much talking and interacting) a lot of the guy’s family members. It was cool to see how much they appreciate the chasers and how much we support the guys! During this time there also appeared as if a Gaggle of Chasers had convened at the bottom of the stairs.(Not that I’m trying to compare Chasers to geese, but at this time of night with pretty much no sleep in at least a 24 hour span of time all of our conversing sounded like a gaggle of geese honking “that was amazing” over and over again…I may have been delirious. Amanda and I are trying to master the art of sleeping with our eyes open, maybe I was just practicing.) It was too cool to look around and see so many people you knew or recognized that had come out to support these 10 fabulous guys. You could really tell that we are all really proud of Straight No Chaser’s accomplishments.

As we approached the front of the meet and greet line you couldn’t help but notice that PBS had their camera set up near the beginning of the table. Naturally when Amanda and I approached said camera they caught a nice view of us fighting. Amanda threatened to push me down the stairs. I can feel the love. (We fight because we care.) Tyler gave us a wave of recognition, which I missed, but Amanda informed me did happen. Thanks, Tyler! Jerome said hi to us and how great it was for us to come out to the show. Mike’s face lit up when he saw us and he said “hi ladies, it’s so great to see you!” His recognition of us was so cute. We then approached Seggie and Tyler:

Seggie: So I saw your tweet about your clam chowder mission. How’s it going?
Megan: After some research, Legal Seafood seems to be winning.
Tyler: Yes! I knew it!
Seggie: No, I will not accept Legal Seafood. I want more of a Mom and Pop type of place. (I guess the search must continue!)
Tyler: So why didn’t you say hi!? (He was referring to when we saw him at the Hyannis Sound Show)
Amanda: You were out of context, it was weird.
Megan: Ya, and you were talking to people. We didn’t want to barge our way in.
Tyler: So…
(Sorry, Tyler. We promise we won’t drop the ball next time.)
DR (to Tyler): What show did you see them at?
Tyler: Hyannis Sound
DR: oh okay (as if that was a perfectly acceptable and normal response)
DR (to Amanda and Megan): I love your leis.
Amanda: Thanks, we also put on Christmas light’s for the occasion.
DR (flashing one of his heart-melting smiles): oh nice

Charlie then jumped up from his seat when he saw us and gave us both huge hugs!

Charlie: Thank you, thank you, thank you for coming out for the show. It is so nice to see familiar faces in the audience.
Amanda and Megan: You’re welcome!

You’re welcome, Charlie! His reaction to us was so cute and heartfelt. It truly melted my heart, and it will be a moment I will never forget. We then moved over to Randy:

Randy: So when can we expect a blog about tonight?
Amanda: Well it depends when we have time to write it. We arrived in AC this morning at 9:30 and we have a flight home at 6:15 am (so really in a few hours from then).
Megan: Yeah, and then we both have to go to work straight from the airport.
Randy: Wow! You guys are going to hate us tomorrow.
Megan (laughing): We could never hate you. (In reality I was really hating my boss, who wouldn’t give me the day off.)

We then moved on to Don and Ryan (Walt was missing from the meet and greet table. I think he had to do something for PBS…we’ll forgive you this time, Walt.) As it was Don and Ryan’s birthdays a week or so prior to the PBS taping we had brought them birthday cards.

Don (face lighting up): for me?
Amanda: Yup, happy birthday!
Don: Thank you, you girls are so thoughtful.
Don: So how mad were you when everyone got one of these? (He was pointing to the blue glow sticks that got distributed during the last song...which I won't reveal what it was, but I can tell you it was AMAZING!)
Amanda: We were so mad!
Megan: We were so mad that we had to take two glow sticks. (Most people only had one.)
Don: Good! You guys deserve two glow sticks. 
(For the record, we weren't mad about the glow sticks at all. We thought they were awesome! If I had been allowed to take them on the plane, I would have stolen a whole bag of them...well Blake gave me permission to, so I guess it's not stealing. Alas, TSA had to bring me down!)
Ryan:  Were you the two doing crazy things with your glow sticks?
Amanda and Megan: Probably. (It most definitely was us...we make our own glow stick rules!)
Ryan: (looking at his birthday card) This card fits you two perfectly.
(We bought the card because it illustrated two nuts...like peanuts with arms and legs...and stated “happy birthday from your two favorite nuts”. I then added a personal touch and gave each of the nuts speech bubbles. They are obviously Bostonian nuts that say things like “oh my gawd it’s Mahky Mahk” and “Hahvuhd, Hahvuhd, Hahvuhd.” Glad you enjoyed it, Ryan!)
Megan: That's why we got it for you!
Ryan: So what New England shows are you going to...other than Boston?
Amanda: We'll also be in Rhode Island.
Ryan: You know, we will also be in Connecticut and New Hampshire 
(We are aware, Ryan, however those shows are during the week and we have 2 shows planned...unless we can hitch a ride on the tour bus and take the week out of work I just don't know if it will happen. Although Ryan should watch out when he says things like that...we almost bought tickets right then and there! We are also seriously considering making the trip out to Fresno for New Years' Eve...this will be our biggest SNC trip yet and requires money saving...New Hampshire and Connecticut would definitely cut into those funds. Hmmm...so much to think about and consider.)

The PBS people were rushing the meet and greet line along because they still had some more production things they had to take care of. Amanda and I waited near the stairs for Marna and Tara. Ryan then called us back over (apparently he wasn’t done talking to us). He had spotted Antoinette coming down the line and wanted us to know that she was the oldest chaser. He was so excited to be seeing her again and was equally impressed when we told him that we had dinner with her before the show and that we sat near her at the show. Ryan also took this opportunity to tell us some secrets about Tyler. For the simple fact that Tyler cannot defend himself, and that I pride myself in being a good secret keeper (most of the time), I will not share what Ryan told  us, however I will take this opportunity to  thank Ryan for acting like we have known him forever and for sharing such great pieces of information with us. You’re awesome!

Twins!
Ryan then tried to steal Don’s birthday card when he was piling up his belongings. Don quickly informed him that that was his card and that we gave it to him. It made me so happy to see Don so happy over something as simple as a birthday card. We ventured over to the group photo line at this time. We could tell that PBS wanted to make this as quick as possible, but it was great that they still let the guys do their thing and appreciate their fans. Tara, Marna, Amanda, and I (typing that I just realized they all have a lot of a’s in their names…just thought I would share) decided that we would get a group photo together…we are twins after all, it only seemed fitting. As we approached the guys they all started yelling “Chasers of the Month!” I think Charlie may have started the call out. Thanks, guys! This was certainly wrapping up to be one memorable evening.

We then went with our fellow Chasers to Ben and Jerry’s for some post show festivities. We reminisced about the amazing show and the experience of being at the PBS taping. We then departed back to Marna’s were we were lucky enough to catch a two hour cat nap before heading back to the airport. I cannot thank Tara and Marna enough for what they did for us. Without them, this adventure never would have been possible.

We landed back in Boston at 7:30 am August 18th. I already had my camp apparel on and headed straight from Amanda’s apartment to work. I lived life as a zombie that day, but I will never trade anything for that amazing experience. August 17th, 2011 will be a day for the record books. 

3 comments:

  1. Great blog girls! Thanks again for the awesome memories of that night. We also had to go to work the next day (albeit with a few more hours sleep than you but 20+ years older too...lol) but my permagrin lasted for quite a while. Even my evil boss couldn't make that grin fade. Love the picture and love that Mike is wearing my glow stick!! He is so cute, he loves the orange glow sticks and bracelets so I try to give him one after each show. Nice to see him wearing it! Can't wait to see you both again...Baltimore?? AC?? Thanks for the great blogs!! Kelli

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  2. Thanks, Kelli! We will actually be in Baltimore and AC...Tara is good at the arm twisting. Just finalized plans for Baltimore today :-)

    ~Megan

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  3. Ummm... No. That is unacceptable. You must share your Tyler secrets with the at of us. :P

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