"You're cute, but you can't sing." Randy Jackson
The 5:45a.m. train leaving from Fitchburg didn't leave at 5:45. There were mechanical errors. It left just before 6. The next stop was at North Leominster. It overshot it's stop and had to back up. Whoever heard of a train backing up?!? That shows how ghetto central Mass. is.
I arrived in Boston circa 7:40. I was told to be at the Boston Convention Center by 7. I knew though that there would be a lot of waiting. A lot.
I took a cab and the traffic ran up the meter. I told him don't bother driving across the bridge, I'll get out run across the street, go up the stairs, and go across the bridge myself. I probably saved myself $3 all the while wasting a $10 bill when I could have caught the underground for $1.25. I was in fear of being late.
That fear left when I entered, presented my green paper to security, went upstairs and viewed a long line of hopefuls. And I rushed?!?
We were seated in a room. Assigned seats actually. There were 7 rows of contestants with about 10 in each row. The actual number of contestants was either 63 or 70. A good number of those contestants were from New York.
When I first entered, I saw a girl who I recognized from the Boston Herald. Becky O'Donahue. She's a twin. 25. New York. Her and her twin, Jessie who was present but not a contestant, were on Fear Factor a few years ago. I started talking to her telling her I know who she is and stuff.
My seat was right behind her's. She was in row 5. I was in row 6. Later I left to use the bathroom, which I did a zillion times through the day, and when I came back a man was talking to her. He was complementing her presence and sophistication. He was the parent of someone. He then asked her "Do you play sports? My daughter...-"
"Are you Senator Brown?" I asked.
"Am I Senator Brown? Yes, I'm Senator Brown."
I rolled my eyes at him. "Ugh" I said. Then I took it back. "Well, I didn't mean it like that," I tried to explain. He smiled and said it was okay. When he left I asked O'Donahue if she knew that was the Senator. She said she didn't. She felt like she was talking to someone's dad. Ummm...she was.
Hours later a girl, from New York, and I were on our way outside. On our way down the corridor, guess who was coming up the corridor with a crew of cameras following. Paula Abdul herself. Twirling in front of the cameras and acting stupid. Even though I met her before in Orlando, I became temporarily star struck. I kept walking straight. Staring at the crew and watching how silly she was being. I kept walking straight for the crew. The girl I was with pulled my arm. "Come on. To the left, to the left," she was telling me. My jaw was still ajar but I kept a straight posture as we walked past Paula Abdul. There was eye contact and I looked at her like she was stupid and she returned the look like "Oh the contestants saw me."
Going towards the escalator we could see men in black through the window. This entourage coming out of the limo included Randy Jackson and Simon Cowell.
We went down the escalator and we said to the female security "Did you see Paula?" She said she did and Paula was acting stupid. She said Paula hid behind her and her partner "hiding" from the camera saying "You can't see me." Duh
On our way out the building my attention and eyes focused on Simon. He had a coffee in his hand. Starbucks I beleive. I can't be sure. He walked in the Convention Center and looked up and around like he was an inspector making sure the roof wasn't going to fall on him.
Later, AI producers were telling everyone to get back in thier seats. Camera crews surrounded the door and I knew what was happening. Paula was gonna come in and speak to everyone. She entered and everyone cheered and clapped. She gave a pep talk and at the end she said ...."cuz we want to give you a..." and she made a square with her hands and I yelled out "Golden Ticket!!" She looked at me, pointed and gave me the thumbs up. "That's right," she said. Then she left.
Later all three judges came in for a pep talk again. They began saying things like "Argue your case." "We do change our minds." Yeah right. I felt that they were saying these things to get people rowled up to give television what television wants. Angry people begging for a reverse decision.
Ryan Seacrest was last to enter and do his thing. He said something like don't try to read the judges because we'll never know what they are thinking. He said just keep singing no matter what they do. They may look at us like we are aliens. They may not be looking at us at all. He was right.
Later the first Golden Ticket winner entered the room with Seacrest building up the excitement. He was like "I know you guys are saying 'yeah that's great for her but I want one'." I told him "Yeah, that's exactly what I'm thinking!!" He wore a sweater that said Royal Flush on the back. I asked him if he played poker and he said I was the second person to ask him that. The answer is no and he didn't even know it was on his sweater until someone asked him. My guess is, he was dressed by someone else.
The girl, I don't know her name had golden curly hair. She was pretty. There were actually two girls with golden hair. One had braids, the other girl's hair was natural.
Each contestant was seen individually for a camera interview and for a pre-judge confession. By 12:30 only 9 contestants had Golden Tickets which were exchanged for Green papers. Only about 3 rows had auditioned.
The production stopped for a one hour lunch break. I went to lunch with the two guys in foil. They will definatly be on TV so you will definatly know who I'm talking about. Actually when I was going outside they were being escorted by security. I got the story from them. The judges had them sing a duet. Once they got their no, outside the doors for the cameras, one of the two took off his foil helmet, grazed his foot on the ground like a bull or horse ready to attack, and ran straight for the camera bumrushing it with his "weapon". Security escorted them towards the exit and that's when I ran into them in the corridor. We left together and then came back about half and hour later.
The judges had a press conference during lunch. It was leaked Simon said he was disgusted at the talent here in Boston. Maybe that's why 1/3 of the room was from New York:-) LOL
It was just prior to 2:00p.m. Very shortly after my lunch it was my turn for my personal interview. I was recognized from last year and told to say my name and where I'm from and what I do. I was asked what it would mean to me to go to Hollywood. What happened last year? How will I approach the judges this year? What am I all about? What's the "B" around my neck stand for? Hold it up to the camera. I went into an explanation about two missing holes in the B. I made reference to the camera man probably having digital zoom. I remember finishing my interview by saying "I'm gonna be me, but a toned down me."
You can read last year's experiance at
For those who are interested in comparing last year to this year.
Hours later it was time for my confessional. While waiting, Golden Tickets crossed my path. A chinese girl. A black chick with a long ponytail. Also, a girl with golden curly hair who I know the name is Brianna Taylor. She smokes Newports.
Jenny Anderson, I recognized her picture from the Herald. I saw her walking down the corridor with a Golden Ticket. I put the name and face together.
Of course the senator's daughter, Ayla Brown, made it earlier in the day. She was the only one in the contestant room wearing a huge Patriots blanket like she was too cool to wear a jacket.
Becky O'Donahue, who I was rooting for, made it. I hope she beats out Ayla Brown. Becky O'Donahue is my fave for Idol. And I hope she reads this blog.
And the best thing happened. There was another set of twins. They were annoying. When the judges came in the room earlier they were totally acting obnoxious and trying to get everyone to do a spirit cheer. I yelled out "Shut up!! Sit down!!" Me and some other people went 1, 2, 3 "NO SPIRIT CHEER!!!" People laughed.
Well, while waiting for confession a , no offense, huge girl went in. She was in there for like 5 seconds before the Spirit twins came down the hall crying. "Yes!" I exclaimed. A producer opened the confessional door and told the other producer to take whoever was in there out cuz they wanted to get the twins RIGHT NOW while they were still crying and carrying on. It was sad but funny. Then some guy was running full force to the bathroom and a camera ran with him. He ran full force back to the judging area. Seconds later he ran by again full force to the bathroom. "What the hell is he doing?" people were wondering. I now know the boy is Michael Sandecki.
After confessional me, a girl I call Brooklyn, and a boy went to look for somewhere to warm up. I already did that in the bathroom down stairs but I joined for the heck of it. We were soon. We went to a room that the producers and crew ate in earlier in the day. There were still pie pieces on a table and coffee and hot water. We all poured a cup of hot water and I put a lemon in mine. And we each took a package of honey.
It was time. It was nearly 5:00 pm. We went back to the contestant waiting room where only like 20 people remained. My how the room emptied since the day began. Ken Warwick came in the room for a pep talk. He said the contestants are starting to get boring because they are just coming in and singing their song like this ( he was speaking in a monotone). He said we needed to keep up the energy. We've been there all day in our best clothes waiting for our 3 minutes in front of the judges. We were tired, hungry, and losing energy. We pepped ourselves up with a game of Simon says. We said "Let's pretend it's 7 a.m. and we just got here." We started cheering and clapping just to pump ourselves up. Next 5.
Me, Brooklyn, a German girl, an adorible 16 year old boy who I now know is Colton Rudloff, and another girl with curly hair was in the group of 5. We sat outside the judges' door.
A boy with huge nerd glasses wearing a half cut shirt with Mickey Mouse on it had his crew of friends. Like 20 or 30 people there just for him. I know he's going on tv. His shirt was half cut revealing his floppy belly. His contestant number had to cover Mickey Mouse. He went in and came out ranting and raving about how the judges didn't appreciate Metallica. Seacrest was there in the midst of his friends and said something like they're here to support you. Group hug.
A few contestants later it was my turn. The camera was on me. I got up, paused. The producer was rushing me. "Go in. They're ready."
I had a flashback. When I was in the Army we were training for rifle qualification day. You only have one chance. Before the targets come someone asks over the tower megaphone, "Drill sergeants ready? Soldiers ready?" or something to that effect. They can't start until everyone gives the okay. Our Drill Sgt. used to say, take your time getting the sand bags right. If a drill sergeant is yelling at you just say "ummhmm whatever" and don't start until you are comfortable. I took that advice.
The producer was saying "Come on, they're ready."
"Yeah, Yeah," I was thinking. I was about to walk in but I stopped and turned back. I stared in the air and took a deep breath. Then I started for the doors again...
The judges had a different seating arrangement than usual. Simon was on the far left where Randy usually sits. Paula was still in the middle and Randy was to the far right where Simon used to sit.
"Hi Paula," I said. She was looking down. Then she gave me a delayed reaction. "Yo!" she said still looking down at her paper.
"We've seen you before," stated Randy looking at me with one eye big as if he was Sherlock Holmes.
"Yes" I smiled.
"Where?" he asked.
"Orlando." I said. Then my personality began to come out. I started speaking really fast. "Remember? I had the microphone headset?" I made a motion with my hand around my head and across the side of my cheek.
All three looked at me expressionless. I stopped talking.
I can't exactly remember exact words that were said after that. I believe Randy asked if I was in the Armed Forces. I said "Yeah I was in the Army," but I didn't sound too happy or proud of being there.
A few more questions before Paula asked "What will you be singing for us?"
"Janet Jackson's Together Again" I beamed.
"Uh-Oh. That's Paula's favorite artist," exclaimed Simon.
I could tell they were being sarcastic. They joked on it for a minute. I guess Paula and Janet are rivals. I do know that Paula choreographed for Janet back in the day. I also made reference to that last year.
I began singing.
"There are times when I look above and beyond...."
Paula Abdul was paying me no attention. She held a paper up to her face and was chatting with Simon and laughing and giggling. Simon was talking back with her. She was looking at the director Nigel and smiling, still with the paper to her face, and shaking her head no. Was she talking about me? Then I remembered Seacrest's speech.
I looked over at Randy who was the only one paying attention.
"When I feel that I don't belong draw my strength..."
Finally somewhere in the middle of my performance Paula exaggeratly looks up. It scared me.
"Dream about us together again baby. What I want us together again baby. I know we'll be together again cuz everywhere I go, every smile I see, I know you are there smiling back at me. Dancing in moonlight I know you are free, cuz I "
"Okay you can stop," said Simon.
I faded the last words.
"Miranda. I believe the other judges will agree with me when I say you sang that song better than Janet Jackson."
"Really?" I beamed. That was fantastic coming from Simon. "Thank you," I gleed.
He sat back and put his hands above his head. They all stared at me expressionless. There was a pause.
"I'm kidding," he said.
"Oh." My heart fell.
"That was terrible."
"Really?" I cried.
"No, that was good," he said.
"No, that was horrible."
I was confused. Was it good or bad? I wanted this game to end.
"It was terrible," said Simon.
The other judges agreed.
"Would I lie to you?" he asked.
"No," I choked out.
"Would Randy lie? Would Paula lie?" he asked.
"No," I softly said.
I can't remeber exactly what happened. I think Paula said "I think she's shocked at you Simon."
"No," I said. I can't remember what I said after that.
Simon asked me about choreography. Like why I didn't do any or something to that effect. I wanted to explain how the song was a last minute decision. There was a lot I wanted to say to answer that question. I started a word of a sentence stopped, started again. I was thinking of what to say. I was choked up.
Then Paula made fun of me. "Uh,guh uh duh uh uhgah," said Paula. She was looking down again. I got red.
"Do you want me to do some choreography?" I asked Simon. "I can"
"No, thats' alright," he said.
"Do you want me to sing another song? I can sing another song," I offered.
"No, don't sing," said Simon.
Randy said I was out of key and my voice sounded vibrato. He made a motion to his throat. They way the French say F-you.
"Paula, what do you think?" I begged to her.
She looked up. "Hmm?" she looked around like who called my name. She shook her head at me. I can't remember her exact words but whatever they were didn't help.
Then Simon asked me "Who are you here with?"
"I'm here alone. My mother was too sick to come," I said.
"Who told you you could sing?" asked Simon.
"Everyone," I said
"What do they say when they hear you?" He asked.
"They say 'wow' and 'good job'-"
"Are you willing to sing out in public?"
"Yes! Do you want me to go out there and sing and bring you back ten people-"
"No, that deal's already been done," said Simon
"You know what? There was a guy that came up to me today outside when I was practicing--"
"Ooooh a guy," giggled Paula.
They started making fun of me again.
"What can I do to get better?"
"Stop singing," said Simon.
"Give me some feedback," I asked.
Randy said "What more feedback do you want? You can't sing. You're out of key. You're not a singer." Then he paused.
"You said we wouldn't lie to you, right?" asked Simon. "Would we lie?"
"No," I choked out again.
"Look," said Randy," you're cute, but you can't sing."
Then Paula said "You have an access television show. So that shows you have creativity."
"Yes!!" I piped up. "And I can use that creativity in Hollywood!"
"No, no, no, no, not in this competition you won't," she said.
"Can you act?" asked Simon
I looked at him. A flashback came. A friend told me they might have me in mind for another show. Last year in Orlando, I got a no from the judges but weeks later they wanted to do a story on me. Why? I wasn't going to Hollywood. This year they wanted to do a story on me but the Nor'Easter scared them away. Do the producers have something in mind for me that has nothing to do with this competition?
"I can." I said. "I want to be a popstar. Please just give me a chance."
"No, no, no"
"Don't you want to work with me?"
"No, no, no"
"Listen, " I started singing again. "There are times when I look above and beyond-"
"Stop singing," said Simon. "Randy, yes or no?"
"No," Randy said firmly.
"Paula please, please, Paula please?" I begged.
"Paula?" asked Simon.
She shook her head. "No," she softly said.
"Thank-you," said Simon.
I exited the room to be greeted by cameras. "They want me to get mad and cry and punch the cameras. I'm not going to give them what they want?"
"Why not?" asked a producer. It will get you on tv."
"No, " I said. "It just makes you look more stupid when you do all that and I'm not going on tv looking stupid."
I grabbed my coat from by the window and walked down the corridor.
I went to my after-judge confessional in which at one point I referred to the judges as "jerks". Other than that I think I was pretty calm.
Walking down the corridor, I walked past an AI camera. "I'm sure you guys will have a great season," I attempted a failed smiled.
Becky O'Donahue was still around. "Good luck Donahue!" I yelled.
I lingered around for a minute. The girl right after me got a Golden Ticket. Brooklyn didn't get one. We walked downstairs together.
I went outside, walked ten feet, and came back in. I asked the security guard how to get to the underground. He pointed straight. I made my way to North Station. My train was at 7:35. Twelve hours later from when I first arrived.
The season starts in January. If my clip is shown, someone somewhere out there will see me.