Honestly, I almost don't want to blog about this show because somehow it feels like my grand Mars adventure isn't officially finished until I do. Right now I'm in the car with Bec, Jess and my mum, headed back to LA. We were supposed to stay in Vegas one more night, but no to that. I need to be in LA. That's where I belong.
We arrived in Vegas yesterday morning after having roughly 2 hours of sleep. We'd planned to have a nap before the show, but I was far too wired. I was feeling antsy about not being at the Artifact screening which was happening just a few minutes away, and Artifact tweeting about what was being said was NOT helping. I tried to relax but I couldn't, so by the time Jess and Bec were ready to go exploring, I was ready to burst out of my skin.
Our first mission was to find a secret pizza place Dai had told us about when we met her in Irvine. It took some hunting, but we did it! I ordered a cheeseless vegetarian pizza (effectively making it vegan), much to the dismay of the guy serving me. It's funny -- I've ordered cheeseless pizza a few times in LA and no one's even blinked about it. I do it in Vegas and it's like I've sprouted a second AND third head. Even the people behind me were appalled! Ha.
We had our pizza (which was delicious, by the way. Thanks, Dai!) and decided to just hang around until check in time. We left the pizza place and I got out my phone to thank Dai for the suggestion, when Jess elbowed me in the ribs. "It's Jared!" she whispered. I laughed, thinking it was a joke, but when I looked up, there he was. When I think of all the times we wanted to spot a random wild Leto, it seems so ridiculous now that it's actually happened. I don't know what we thought we'd do if we saw him, but I can tell you what we did do...We freaked out. A lot. We froze indecisively and just watched him for a moment and saw that Shannon was in the store that had Jared walked into. We briefly toyed with the idea of going to say hello, but decided that they were just out as normal guys (as opposed to out at a screening or event), so we turned and went downstairs to calm down and compose ourselves.
We sat on some couches until eventually we stopped hyperventilating. Then, just as my heart rate had returned to normal, who should walk towards us but bloody Jared Leto. Haha. I elbowed Bec and all the blood drained from her face as she elbowed Jess. I quickly looked away from him as I didn't want him to think we were deliberately following him (we weren't, honest!) He clearly didn't want to be spoken to or stopped (not that we would have done it) so we didn't react to him at all. Externally, of course. I'm sure internally we were all having the mother of all meltdowns. I know I was! After we were sure he was gone we laughed about how scary that was and felt pretty proud of ourselves for keeping our cool and not trying to shove a phone in his face for a picture like some people may have. We decided it was dangerous to stay there in case he came back, and headed up to the Meet and Greet check in instead.
Now I expected Vegas to be a big show, but I hadn't expected it to be THAT packed. The Meet and Greet was the biggest one out of all the shows I did for this tour. It was so bad that we barely even fit in the room. Even Jared said he was surprised at how big it was when he arrived. It was only him and Tomo, though, as Jared said Shannon was feeling sick.
Now I have to say, this Meet and Greet may have been the best EVER. It was damn freaking funny that I am laughing just remembering it! There was a TV there, so Jared kept getting distracted by the football game and commenting on what was happening. I could hardly breathe I was laughing so hard. He kept taking about what a weird game it was -- "Guys wearing tiny shorts and singlets and chasing each other, pushing each other, grabbing each other and patting each other on the butt when they do something right" -- and how he doesn't watch or care for any sports at all. He also kept making fun of one player in particular (don't ask me who because as if I know) and because from the back he had long hair and tattoos ("Hey is that me??") but in reality he was, "an ugly son of a bitch! He gives the ombrè a bad name!" It was so hysterically funny that I can't even find the words to explain it. He was on fire.
He was also completely adorable with three little girls who had come to the Meet and Greet. He called one of them to sit next to him, and was playing around with her all night. He was touching her ears and her hair, cracked an egg on her head (the game, not a real egg) and kept talking to her in this really sweet voice. It was perfect. Completely perfect.
There were so many great moments in the Meet and Greet that I don't even know where to begin. He took off his shirt at one point (the flannel I mean) and made it into a strip tease. Someone threw him a dollar and he caught it and said, "I think I've earned it!" She laughed and said it was a down payment, and he said, "Honey, once I get the dollar I know I've got the whole purse." I lost it and I'm losing it again just writing that. God I love him!
Someone asked how they choose which songs to cover, and he said that they are asked to cover pop songs so they try to make it something unexpected. He then started singing Bad Romance but stopped short of "I want you open-mouthed and on your knees" because there were children in the room!
He was distracted by the ads for Chippendale strippers and said that he couldn't understand why he wasn't asked to do Magic Mike Two. Good Lord it was hilarious. He was like, "If they wanted to sell tickets to that show, why didn't they ask me?? I mean I don't want to say...But I just gotta say, you know what I'm sayin'?" He said that Matthew McCon wasn't doing it because you probably can't go from winning the Oscar to Magic Mike 2, but that, "I could fill that banana hammock, you know what I'm saying??" OH MY GOD JARED, STOP IT. Someone had a pornographic picture of him taken by @itsrosemary at a previous show, and she held it up to prove his point. He lost it laughing and joking about how dirty we all are and Rosemary yelled out, "That's my picture!" He was giggling like a child talking about how perverted she is for taking that pic. Purely for descriptive purposes...This is the picture in question. For science. For science.
He then acted out this little skit about how taking dirty pictures of him was Rosemary's life work and how after she took the picture she would throw her camera away because her work was done and she'd said what she needed to say. Then he paused and added, "Next time...Video!" I feel I'm not adequately describing just how hilarious it was, but trust me, I can't even type this without losing it!
(Picture taken by @itsrosemary and posted with permission.
Bless her little heart :3 )
Someone asked about what he thought the U2 release, and he once again asked us what we thought. He asked us if we thought DJs and Rock and Roll were dead, and said that he felt Rock and Roll was dying. He asked the little girl what she listened to, which was just too precious for words. The way he spoke to her...Gorgeous. Just beautiful. Everyone cheered when she said she didn't like One Direction, and everyone was shocked when she said she didn't know who U2 were. Jared laughed and said that was okay, as long as she knows who Thirty Seconds To Mars are!
J talked about how weird Vegas is (agree. I hated it) and said it was very dry and hot. He kept saying it was a dry heat, and made sure the AIW staff gave everyone a bottle of water. So sweet. He spoke about the weird looking hills and Tomo said, "You want to run up those, don't you!" and he laughed and said he doesn't want to move at all because he's feeling lazy.
Someone asked if he'd ever considered partnering his merch with a charity, and he said that they did that with the Haiti book, which is still available. He also said that they do a lot behind the scenes that we don't even know about, and then encouraged us to buy the Haiti book to help people in need.
He then asked us about merch and asked what we liked and what we were waiting on. He did a couple survey type questions, then asked us what we want to see in store. There were some great suggestions such as socks, dog accessories an bringing back some tees that have been sold out. He asked about the Mars shoes and a girl said that hers were stolen, so he said, "As they should be! Those are cool shoes!!" He was in such goofy mood. She said something I couldn't hear -- probably about being disappointed -- and he said, "I'm sorry about that, but that's what you get for leaving them around! Those shoes are hot shit! Somebody out there is looking goooooooooood!" Damn I wish we could record Meet and Greets because this one was just perfect. He also talked about why they make such limited amounts of merch at a time, saying that they learnt their lesson with some merch they just couldn't sell. He mentioned a yellow From Yesterday shirt with a fish on it, and said that when that sold out they had a party.
Someone yelled out that they should make merch with a triad made out of rhinestones, and Tomo laughed and said that's a home bedazzled job. Jared switched into his "I am unicorn" persona and the entire room lost the plot. He was pretending to host an arts and crafts lesson with glitter and feathers and rhinestones, but he did the whole thing with his eyes closed because he only opens his eyes to make a POINT. I can't even begin to describe just how funny it was. I will be laughing for years.
People continued to shout out ideas and suggestions and he had Reni write them down until it started to get too out of control. He ended it by thanking us for coming and wishing us a great show. Then it was time for the signing. Now a lot of people say things like this happen to them when really they don't, and maybe I'm one of those people, but I swear this is what happened. Bec was in front of me, and when she put her poster in front of him he looked up at her and smiled. Really, really smiled. It was beautiful. I was next and he looked straight in my eyes and smiled, then held my gaze as he signed my poster, and continued to smile at me as he signed my mum's poster. He didn't even look at her or her poster, haha. I had to turn away to keep walking so I didn't get in trouble for holding up the line, but oh my God. I will never forget that smile. Ever. Ever ever ever. He's smiled at me before, but nothing like that. That was the first time I felt seen by him, you know? Like he really saw me. I'm so glad my mum saw it because I would have thought I made it up if she didn't. That smile was the highlight of the ENTIRE trip, and yes I'm including his reaction to the poster and going up on stage. Nothing can compare to it. Nothing.
I walked away (although I wanted to run, skip, sing and dance) and rejoined the line for the pictures. He smiled at me again when it was my turn to take a picture and told me to "Get in here!" between Tomo and him. He then looked down at me and said, "This is my favourite shirt, the clouds and the triad." I don't know what I said in reply because I was smiling too hard to really form basic syllables, but I think I said, "Aww, thank you" which doesn't even make sense. Haha. I thanked him after the picture and he patted me gently twice on the back. I have never ever walked away from a Meet and Greet so happy in my life. That even includes Perth, and we all remember what happened there!
We went outside and bought some merch...Including the CD for the signing. Shut up and don't judge me, haha. We went and stood on the barrier, but it got crowded and horrible very quickly so we left and went to the back of the venue. The venue was super weird so it was hard to find a good place to stand, and we ended up in a weird little alcove on the side of the stage. It turned out to be an amazing place to stand because not only was it relatively free of drunken fools, Dai came and hung out with us for most of the show. It was amazing! Dai is just so wonderful and she is so one of us. Fangirling, asking "Oh God, what is he wearing? What is he doing?", singing along, jumping and touching the sky and just generally having an amazing time. Watching the show with her made it truly special and the perfect way to end the tour. I actually really miss her already. She's a beautiful person.
The show was cut short because of the weather, but it was amazing. I'll never forget Jared watching himself on the big screen and talking to himself ("Hi, Jared! I missed you! Looking good!"), or the acoustic set in which he played From Yesterday, Attack, Witness and The Kill. It was so fitting that it rained during Closer To The Edge because it was as if the Heavens themselves opened up and sobbed with us that the tour was over. Only Mars could make it rain in the desert in the middle of a drought. It was truly magical.
After the show we went to get our CDs signed and say our final goodbyes. Shannon wasn't there, but I said goodbye and thank you to Tomo as he signed my CD, and he said, "Thank you for coming." When Jared signed my CD I said, "Thank you for an amazing tour," and he looked up at me, smiled big and said, "Nooooooo thank YOU." I will hold onto that until the next time I see them. Who knows when that will be. Soon, I hope. Even a little bit of a Jared soon. I can wait. It's worth the wait.
One day, maybe we'll meet again.
THIRTY SECONDS TO MARS
Jess, me, Dai and Bec.
Excuse my face. Lol
And here comes the rain
Tour of a lifetime.
TITLE LYRICS: "Closer To The Edge" by Mars
For more posts about my adventures in The City Of Angels, click HERE.