10th Aug2007

Virgin Fest Part 2: Meeting Richard Branson

by Will

“You gotta have a ticket if you wanna ride the ride.”

Man, why didn’t anyone tell me that Date My Mom still came on? The things you discover at this time of night…

So, where were we? Oh, right:

Virgin Fest Pt 2: The Meeting

So, at this point, with this being my Star Fucker Summer (the SD post will better explain that), I was determined to meet Sir Richard Branson. That’s when one of my coworkers, Tim, answered my prayers. You see, we had 2-day passes, but none of us really wanted to go on Sunday. The bands were lame (except for the Pumpkins), and we’d really had enough from Saturday. But the owner of my company had requested a meeting with Branson on Sunday, and Tim needed help arranging the meet. This was going to be like a meeting of titans: the most powerful man in comics meeting the most powerful man in modern media? When they shook hands, I imagined that every window in a 1-mile radius would simply shatter. I *had* to witness this, so I offered to help my work bud with the meet.

Sunday, we meet up at the Metro and head on over. On Sunday, the fest was dead. D-E-A-D. Why? Because all the acts sucked except for the Pumpkins, who weren’t scheduled to go on until 8:30. It was now noon. Dead. There were about 12 people in the guest area, when there had been a good 200 at its most crowded point on Saturday. Actually, let me throw in one correction. I did get to see Regina Spektor, and she was adorable. I really only know that once song from VH-1, “Fidelity”., but she’s Russian – it’s my kryptonite. Plus, I’m a sucker for the piano-songstress. After all, there’s still a special place in my heart for Sarah Mclachlan and Nellie McKay. Anyway, back on topic.

Anyway, we get into position. Tim is going to meet Branson and his people, while I was waiting for our guy. Well, I wait and wait and wait. Yeah, he never shows. Now, I’m pissed because I’m determined to meet Branson. Something had to justify that day. I only have one day a week that I don’t work (even though I had blown of the PT gig the day before; it didn’t matter); I was wasting my Sunday, and something needed to make that worthwhile. We went into strategy mode, and texted Branson’s assistant. We told her the big guy was a no-show, but we still wanted to meet Branson. Before we know it, he comes through the guest area again. Finally, we got our chance. I don’t really remember much of it. A bunch of douchebags kept cutting in front of us because they worked for Virgin. We finally got up to him, but Tim did most of the talking. Shot the shit about the comics line, and quickly got pictures. Emphasis on quickly. I took Tim’s first, and it’s a great, well-planned shot. When it was my turn, Branson was clearly trying to move along, so mine didn’t come out as rosy. I’m not posting it here because, frankly, it’s ugly. If you’re on facebook, you’ve seen it. But they can’t take away my dignity!

Apparently, as we were leaving the guest area, Darryl Hannah walked by. Whatever. Billionaires have the weirdest friends. Sure, she’s a actress and all, but she’s always going to be weird to me because of her Kennedy connection. She dated JFK Jr. That makes her part of the Kennedy Curse. The same thing with Sarah Jessica Parker. It’s amazing how much Sex and the City made people forget about her past. If you go back to Square Pegs and Honeymoon in Vegas, you’ll get a hint of the weird. You better believe I think there’s a Kennedy Curse, so I don’t want that bad mojo on me. “No, thanks, man. I don’t want you fucking up my life, too.”

After we accomplished our mission (without the help of a banner-laden aircraft carrier, I might add), we took off. It was all in a day’s work. Kind of an anticlimactic finish, but it’s part of my whole “I wanted something and went after it” attitude that I’m trying to cultivate lately. Sure, he sort of came to us, but that was after we worked pretty hard to make ourselves known. After our dude was a no-show, I don’t think that crew gave 2 shits about us. We could have left, but stuck it out. Anyway, I needed to get that story out of the way for the good stuff. Next up, San Diego Dreaming: A Williambrucewest.com Event Told in (At Least) 5 Parts.