By Rya Backer
Back in early ’09 when First Date was just an idea, I put together a list of dream dates – of which there were a lot. One of them was a band that featured the dreamy lead singer of Midtown, who sang that awesome catchy song with Blair Waldorf that I couldn’t get out of my head all summer. But then other things got in the way – their fame skyrocketed, I continued to date other eligible bands I liked in need of a big break, and that’s just how we left it. But I don’t like unfinished business.
I first worked with the guys in Cobra Starship during VMA weekend in 2011. They played the pre-show and I shot an interview with them and produced a sketch in which “Dick Bagwell” and “Vincent Twice (Vincent Twice),” better known as the band’s Ryland Blackinton and Alex Suarez, respectively, donned fake accents, mustaches and Hawaiian shirts to handicap the nominees for our big show. They were hilarious, genial and, most of all, game. They were willing to go there for the laugh and played to the camera. In other words, they were a producer’s dream, and I wanted more than ever to take them out classy. Calls were made, pitches were sent and just a few weeks ago, fate was sealed.
The Village Party Store was the choice location for a lot of reasons. Sure, it’s a pretty atypical spot for a date (but so is going out with two dudes at once, right?), but I knew there was fun to be had in it, and there would be room to play. Also, my ENT doctor is a block away, and when I got delivered some lame news the other day that I needed my deviated septum situation sorted out ASAP, I went in there before heading into the office to perk up (it worked). In any case, fun was had, flamingo balloons were bought, and next time, we’re getting food.
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