North Fork Theatre
June 2, 2007
I started off the day by taking a bus into New York City to meet Serge, Vanessa, and their daughter Phoebe, for Phoebe's first birthday party. They decided to have an informal, intimate, lunch at the Olive Garden in Times Square. When I got there, I got to hang out with Serge and play with Phoebe while we waited for one more person to arrive. Once he arrived we sat down for a great lunch and I had a lot of fun.
Afterwards, the group went to Toys 'R Us, and I walked down to Penn Station to catch a train to Westbury. The biggest stress about going to Westbury is that you never can predict what traffic will be like on any day on Long Island, so despite it being so close, you actually have to build in lots of time beforehand to your drive to get there on time. For the first time ever, I didn't have to drive to Westbury, and it was really nice. I'd definitely consider doing it again. Jackie had to work so she was going to take the GPS and meet me there. Adrian and Anne were coming in by car also.
This is the seventh time I've seen "Weird Al" Yankovic perform at this venue and each time it was an incredible experience. Now called North Fork Theatre, it was formerly known as Westbury Music Fair. The theater has a rotating stage in the middle of the venue and there is literally not a bad seat in the place. Plus, because of the setup, I usually get lots of fun pictures.
I arrived in Westbury and Jackie met me at the train station. We drove over to the venue and Adrian and Anne were waiting there. There were only a few other cars there, and we had plenty of time to kill, so we drove around and found an Italian restaurant, with odd seating arrangements, to get something to eat. During dinner we filled Adrian and Anne in on the latest round of concerts, and they filled us in on details from their honeymoon.
We drove back over to Westbury and went inside. Right before Jackie was about to enter she remembered that she still had to meet up with a coworker to give him his ticket. Adrian, Anne, and myself already had our tickets scanned, so we waited just inside the door while she waited outside to meet him. She waited as long as she could, but he didn't show, so I called her and suggested she leave the ticket at the will call window.
We went in and found our seats and I estimated there was just enough time for me to run and get a soda in the lobby. While out there, I also bought Anne some popcorn because I know she loves it so much. No sooner than a minute or two after I had returned to my seat, "Fun Zone" started playing.
Because of the rotating stage, the setup was a little different. Most notably, Al and band would need to run up one of the aisles between songs for costume changes, and instead of the three video screens, there were single screens hanging over the audience. While we got our fair share of face time, a lot of action also happened the front of the stage was facing opposite of us. We did get plenty of good views of Rubén Valtierra and Jon "Bermuda" Schwartz.
The bubbles from "Polkarama!" overlapped a bit into "Canadian Idiot." Streamers from that song only fell in one spot and it was on the direct opposite side of the theater from us. "Bob" was the rotating song.
During "It's All About The Pentiums," Al stopped part way down the aisle and got in someone's face while singing. He really worked the whole audience around for this song. At the end, he was a bit disoriented and it took him a long time to find the correct ramp to go up.
"You're Pitiful" entirely unfolded facing the other side of the theater, so we didn't get to see what shirts he used. To my surprise, people actually took out their cell phones and waved them in the air for this song. As the song went on, more and more people took out their cell phones. I was laughing, and I think even at one point Al laughed. It was hilarious on its own, but even funnier knowing what was coming in the encore.
The first woman Al approached during "Wanna B Ur Lovr" gave Al a kiss as he got in her face, so in return, he sat on her. He went up and down a couple aisles before eventually getting in someone's face that was seated in the front row. At first he crawled towards her, but by the time the song was over, he was literally draped all over her and the chair. It was really wild.
Lots of people took out their cell phones for the slow songs in the medley. Jim West kneeled on the stage next to Rubén during "Trapped In The Drive-Thru."
For "Yoda," Al ran from one side of the stage to the other to get the audience to sing along. For "White & Nerdy" he actually rode the Segway down the aisle and onto the stage. Unlike other shows though, he did play it safe and had one hand on the handlebars while doing it.
Lots of people left after "Fat," and next thing I knew, Adrian tells me he's moving to front row, and disappears. I had all my stuff spread out in front of me on the floor, so I threw everything into my bag and went down front. I got down front and didn't see anyone, then Adrian pulled me into a seat in the second row.
We were so incredibly close to the stage that when Al came out for the encore, it was a totally different experience! It was a little hard to hear the music and lyrics being so close, but Al was right on top of us. We were so close, it was difficult to even take pictures! I think we confused Al, because he did a double take and gave a confusing stare to Anne and Jackie when he saw us all in the second row for the first time.
I couldn't see the audience during "Cell Phones" because we were so close and lights, equipment and band members, were blocking our view of the other side, but I'm sure the place was crazy waving their cell phones. I stood up and thrust my cell phone high over my head.
At one point during "Albuquerque" two people on the other side of the theater got up to leave. Al saw them and started yelling at them asking where they were going, and saying that the song wasn't over. When they didn't react, he started to chase them up the aisle, until someone grabbed their attention and they went back to their seats totally embarrassed. They had no choice but to stay after that! The confetti cannon went off right in front of us! We got covered! I was picking confetti off myself for a long while after that.
It was the longest line ever by the buses that I remember at Westbury. Adrian commented that we were waiting for over an hour and a half, but it didn't seem that long to me. I passed time listening to those around us sing lyrics to Al songs, and by randomly taking pictures of everyone in the darkness until Anne repeatedly broke my camera. Every time I took a picture of Anne, my camera would freeze and I'd have to pull the batteries to reset it. This didn't happen when I took pictures of other people. Watch out Adrian, she might be a vampire.
Once we finally got under the tent, Steve Jay said, "Hi Dave" to me and asked how I enjoyed the show. Even though we were fairly close to the end of the line, I told Al that there were about 600 more people in line after us, and he wondered if anyone actually went home after the concert. I told him some people did, but they came back later with their friends. Al then asked me what I had learned since yesterday, and I said not to sit so close to the confetti cannon, and he laughed. He said that the reason that there were no dollar bills during "I'll Sue Ya" was because the venue wouldn't allow it. It was against some fire code to use an automatic feeder, so they couldn't do it. I'm not sure how they would have anyway, because of the layout.
We hung around the venue way too late, and took the traditional goofy pictures in front of the Bad Hair Day era picture of Al that they have, and mocked the other performers who had pictures up. Since Anne had thoroughly killed my camera by then, I didn't get to take a lot pictures myself, but I did participate in a few.
Waiting on Adrian's car was a postcard for a raunchy band called Filthy Elvis. We made fun of their logo and song titles, and I picked up a lot of discarded postcards and decorated Adrian's car with them. We hung out so long in the parking lot that we were the last two cars there, except for the random guy who came to feed the ducks.
We were there so long that even the tour bus left before we did. I think the bus driver has a sense of humor because he kept driving aimlessly around the empty parking lot. I'm almost positive he was doing it just to humor us. He circled the venue twice and waved to us before finally leaving. It was very odd, yet incredibly hysterical, in our sleep-deprived state.
You can click on the highlighted words above and below to see more concert photos.