Possibly unecessary disclaimer: This article is, in the spirit of Saturday Night Live, a gentle parody of the SNL Adventures, a semi-regular series written about the fun and excitement involved in going to see a taping of the popular television show, from waiting in the standby line to the show itself. I had the idea for this while we were standing in line waiting to get in to see the Broadway musiclal, Rent. I mean this article to be good clean fun, as it were. With that being said, here is the Rent Adventure Story.

Elizabeth and I were sitting at the computer, trying to think of what Broadway show we were going to see. She wanted to see Mamma Mia, presently showing at the Winter Garden Theater. I had not particularly even considered going to see this play but since she wanted to see it as much as she did and I didn’t want to be the cause of great dispute, I offered to see this show with her.

However, things took an unusual turn, and there were no tickets available for the day that we wanted to see the show – that day being Tuesday. I would have to give the sold out status of Mamma Mia (at the Winter Garden Theater on Broadway) an F. After a bit of discussion, we thought back to an earlier conversation held by e-mail in which we agreed on certain shows – one of which was Rent. Sending the list back and forth certainly made things easier for us – one of the miracles of the computer age. I give computers and e-mail an A+.

We were able to quickly find tickets to the show at a reasonable price. However, since we were going through Telecharge online, we were assessed a thirteen dollar and fifty cent charge. There is nothing worse than a failing grade, though the ridiculous convenience charge deserves it. I got an e-mail from the site with the pertinent information, which was quite helpful.

We started out by trying to figure out where we were going to be having our evening meal. We wanted to go somewhere that would wouldn’t be too far from where we would be seeing the play (41st street) and it ended up being a toss-up between J-2 and Kosher Delight. I think Kosher Delight won out in the the end because they had meat and I was oddly in the mood for a pastrami sandwich, despite the fact that meat upsets my stomach a bit.

There wasn’t much of a line at the restaurant, which was a relief since we were both hungry. There were, naturally, a few people who were ahead of us in line that had to take up considerably more time than average people waiting in line at Kosher Delight – I would have given the wait in line an A but for the people who were slower than usual, and so I have to go with a slightly reduced grade, a B+. They made up for it the following evening when we were going to go to see the Upright Citizen’s Brigade – but that story will just have to wait until Upright Citizen’s Brigade Adventure Story.

Elizabeth ordered a plain burger with ketchup on the side, fries and a cola beverage. I had wanted a pastrami sandwich with fries and a Dr. Pepper, but they didn’t have the small size of Dr. Pepper and wanted to charge twenty cents extra for a larger size – of course, I had already given all of my loose change to various charitable organizations via charity boxes on the wall. I give the lack of Dr. Pepper a D+ and my putting money for good charitable causes a solid B, because I shouldn’t really be so obnoxiously self-congratulatory about it.

We sat down to have the meal after I washed (for bread) and found the seats to be roomy and comfortable – a B+. However, there was a woman who was talking about her status as a single woman and dating in general, who could not bother to get up to move to the table of the person with whom she was speaking – she gets a C- for this gesture.

The Line
After wandering around for awhile and realizing that I should have probably gotten an exact address for the Nederlander Theater but wanting to avoid looking like a clueless tourist (I think two years of residence disqualifies ones tourist visa) we went into a large magazine store on New 42nd Street (it would have been called “New and Improved 42nd Street” but that probably would have been just a bit over the top) and skimmed through an issue of Time Out New York until the listing for Rent was found.

We walked over, slight drizzle though there was, and Elizabeth got in line while I walked over to the box office to pick up the tickets. The gentleman at the box office was sharply dressed in a long sleeved collared shirt and coordinating sweater – I have to give him an A for looking good.

Back in line, the drizzle was enough to be a bother but not enough to merit finding a newstand with its $3 umbrellas – a soft C- for the rain, since I can’t help but think of my dear grandmother on my father’s side, who should live to be one hundred and twenty, and how she would tell me that rain was good for plants and so we should be grateful for it. Additionally, there was a woman standing behind us in line holding an umbrella and she shared it with us. She gets a huge A+ for doing so. Said grade also is extended due to the fact that she was generally quite pleasant.

Prior to going to our seats, we perused the items for sale at the merchandise stand. There were t-shirts, buttons, posters, and of course, a medallion with the lyrics to “Seasons of Love” on it. In the end, liquor won over all else and Elizabeth bought a whiskey and Coke with a side order of chocolate M&M’s for a mere $9.50. Since there were no prices listed we had to assume that the whiskey and Coke were absuredly expensive. It suddenly made sense why some men walk around with metal flasks in their coat pockets.

We found our seats and got our playbills – no unpleasant surprises about cast members being replaced with understudies from Kindergarden Theater School or the like were to be found. The whiskey and Coke gets an A+ but its price gets a D+. It’s not like the theater is doing so badly – the play was pretty much sold out and as far as I understand it usually is.

After the play, there were cast members who were collecting for a charitable organization. In retrospect, we probably should have collected a few autographs, but that’s okay. I picked up a couple shy of a dozen playbills (including the ones we had already) and made a note to give them to friends. Elizabeth picked up a souvenir magnet and a book with the original cast in it. The souvenir stand gets an A+ for being so friendly.

Oh, and the musical was pretty good, too – B+.