Friday, September 17, 2004

Kalanadian Idol

Tracie and I went to the Canadian Idol finale at the Medicine Hat Arena last night. There must have been a couple of thousand screaming 14 year-old girls. Doors opened at 4:00 and the tickets said the show would be starting at 5:00. We got there at about 5:00, but that was about an hour too soon. They played clips from past shows until 6:00 when the show *really* started. We got really good seats, right in the very front near the tv screen. I guess the kids were too cool to get seats near the front.

In any case, after about 10 minutes I realized that the girls would be screaming the *whole* time. I got some toilet paper from the bathroom to put in our ears. It took the shrill edge off the more hysterical screams.

Tracie's little sister was there with a bunch of friends. (Becky reads this so I'll refrain from calling them little friends.) They were having a good time, and there's no doubt that they added to screaming by no small amount.

Towards the end of the show the kids started lining up for a live shot along the boards of the rink. Volunteer security guards tried to keep them pushed back to leave a path for the cameraman, but I could see after about three seconds that it wasn't going to work. I'm sure the cameraman could too. He didn't even have a cable puller to help him along. The kids at the front of the line started crowding up against the portable fence. The kids at the back didn't clue in, so I went back and got Becky and brought her up to a prime spot at the very front. We were there for a few minutes when I noticed a little kid behind me, so I let him in front.

He was still at least a foot shorter than Becky, so I asked him if he wanted to go on my shoulders but he declined. I guess I'm kinda creepy to nine year-old boys that don't know me. The kid looked so sad, he was so close to the front, but too short to appear on any of the cameras. I could tell that he *really really* wanted a better view. A few more minutes passed, and as it became evident that they would be announcing the winner any second the crowd of girls was reaching a fevord pitch. Tons of girls were uncontrollably sobbing.

I asked the kid if he wanted to go on my shoulders one more time. I guess the desire to be able to see anything at all and the wanting to be on tv was enough to overcome everthing his parents ever taught him about not talking to strangers. I couldn't really see him once he was up there, but Tracie said he looked pretty pleased.

I just saw us on TV. The kid would have been completely hidden if he hadn't been on my shoulders. I hope he sees it. There were two really good shots of Becky too. I imagine that we might be on several national shows.

In any case, Kalan Porter was in my Mom's kindergarden class, so she was probably the first person to teach Kalan how to sing.

-Gary Milner

ps. I'll post photos when I get back to Calgary Saturday night.

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