For the most part, the jump off premiere was almost an utter failure. We made a deal with the hotel that we would get enough people in the place to meet a $4,000 minimum in bar sales. We also agreed to rent 10 of the 23 rooms in the hotel. On top of that, we promised them that we as skateboarders wouldn't get too crazy and that no more than 160 people would show up, since that number is the capacity of the bar and the pool.
The video was supposed to play at 8pm, and they were to shut down the bar around 11pm. Pearl hotel is a classy establishment, and i think they were expecting a classy crowd. By 7pm, every inch of the hotel was packed with grimey skateboarders drinking their own beers and smoking cigarettes everywhere they're not supposed to. my guess would be that 350 or more people were packed in the bar and pool area. Surprisingly, for a skate event, a good percentage of the attendees were lovely ladies. People were jumping off the banisters into the pool, sneaking into the hotel through the kitchen and getting progressively more wasted as the minutes counted down to 8pm.
Meanwhile, I was busy exporting the video in my car driving back from ivery's house where we'd been editing the video for the previous 48 hours, with no breaks. I get to the hotel and the place is gnarly. So many homies showed up i was almost moved to the point of tears, but i was far too overwhelmed to sit and get sentimental. I still had to burn the dvd!
So i'm in my room, burning the dvd, feeling like i'm on cloud 9. It was 7:45, the video was being burned, the hotel put on a trailers loop of all the web videos we've been putting on the blog, and the crowd was getting hyped. The hotel manager told me he was getting nervous and he wanted to play the video to keep the crowd controlled, and i assured him we were on schedule.
With 7 minutes left on the IDVD countdown, the worst thing imaginable happens. My computer completely freezes. With 7 minutes left, the burning program that comes with the macbook pro decides it can't complete the process. We diagnose the problem, which was due to having far too many applications up and running at the same time, along with a completely maxed out hard drive. Both of which i hadn't taken the time to check before beginning the process, which to my deep remorse could have taken me a total of 30 seconds.
After i shut down all the programs, delete an entire music folder, and retry the burning, i hear a knock on my hotel door. Its the manager, and he tells me that the hotel is getting its ass kicked and unless i have the dvd ready to play that moment, he's pulling the plug, calling the cops, and kicking out the entire party.
I explain the situation and tell him itll just be a few more minutes, but he apologies and says there's nothing he can do. The party's over.
So there i am, in my room, watching the dvd countdown the minutes until the video is completed as the cops are storming the hotel kicking every single person out. The bar gets shut down so we can't meet the $4000 minimum, the video hasn't even been played, and as far as i know there’s tons of drunk skateboarders outside getting arrested.
once the place gets cleared out, the dvd completes the burning process. I have the dvd in my hands while the whole party is kicked out of the premiere! I tell the manager its ready to play and he runs to put the video in.
This is when the magic happens. Somehow, once the video starts playing, people just start appearing in cheers, as if from thin air. People run in from all unguarded entrances, through the kitchen, over the fences and around the back. Herds of people stumble out of the ten hotel rooms, and as the john's video starts playing i hear loud cheers and look back at a packed bar and a full upper banister of homies.
After the video played, the manger called the cops once again and San Diego's finest cleared out the masses.
in retrospect, The SHUFFL premiere happened exactly the way it should. Skate homies showed up from far and wide to watch a homie video, the cops kicked us out and the higher authority tried to stop the fun, but in the end we got to do what we wanted to do anyways. Sounds much like what we do every time we go skate. Almost an utter failure, with a solid victory in the end.
Thanks to everyone that showed up and made the party fun.