Monthly Archives: November 2017

NKOTB Cruise 2017 (The End of the Road)

(Read it from the beginning HERE)

**It has come to my attention that some people may have read a bit too much into my musings about Z. I would like to take this opportunity to clarify that he was nothing but professional on the cruise, never crossed any lines or boundaries and had only a platonic, friendly discourse with Rae. In other words, much like in my own life, there was no sex. I am a comedic writer, and take creative license for entertainment value. Also, I projected my own tendency to look at butts onto Z during my photo-op blog. He did not look at butts. He just made sure everyone got on stage safely, and without embarrassment. I 100% looked at butts. I apologize if my writing style and allusion gave the impression that Z was anything other than a consummate professional.**

Back to the fun stuff. Not that eating crow isn’t super fun. If you’re into that sort of thing. Didn’t Ozzy Osbourne do that once?

It was GPS Night on the cruise. The one theme you can count on and start planning years in advance. Or, if you’re me, you just nod and buy whatever your cruise roomie tells you to buy. In this case, it was a sequined white body-con dress, a beauty queen sash and a mother-effing tiara. Because. Go big or go home, right? Right. In a sense, I’m always going big. Because. I’m a size 14. Get it? See? I still have jokes. I tend to have more of a “anything but a pageant girl” look to me, but decided to roll with this costume as much as I’d rolled with the others. And again, I didn’t have any Spanx, so I just had to let my body live its life. Visible bellybutton indentation and all. I didn’t have quite the level of misplaced confidence I had on Superhero night, but the squad and I did look pretty fierce walking down the hallway together, in our red, white & blue glory, tiaras twinkling in the poor lighting. If you have a squad, you have to strut. It’s the rule. So we strutted right on up to deck 10, where we knew there was room for us to dance in VIP without getting intimate with stage-hugging Blockheads.

Try to picture what my answers in the "Interview Portion" would be like...

Try to picture what my answers in the “Interview Portion” would be like…

The second we stepped up on the open deck, we were smacked in the face by mother nature. She’s kind of a bitch. I spent a lot of time being too lazy to get my hair cut, so it’s long and majestic. This doesn’t really work for gale-force winds in the middle of the night. I was worried I’d accidentally strangle someone. Which is exactly what I was on spacious deck 10 to avoid doing on purpose. It was so windy, I’m told I shouted, “Oh my god, this wind feels like I’m being slapped in the face by a hundred dicks!” So at least I don’t let my education in English Literature go to waste. We posed for about 10 seconds in our painstakingly put together beauty queen outfits, then Jenn and I gave up and went back down to our cabins to change into something more weather-appropriate and dance-conducive. I came back up in leggings, a black t-shirt, a top-knot and a great new attitude. I was ready to dance. Rae tried to fight the good fight and keep the pageant getup on, but gave in shortly after us and also slipped into something more comfortable. Except, in this instance, we all very much meant “more comfortable” and not “naked”. Please just use the reminder, “not in a porn way” as a general rule for reading my stories unless instructed otherwise. No penises were seen in the making of this vacation.

You can’t see much of the action from “VIP” on deck 10. I spent a lot of time asking the wind, “How is this better?!” because when I hear “VIP” I assume it’s better than the general population. But, the more I get access to different VIP areas (*ahem* humble brag *ahem*), the more I realize they’re just areas with fewer people that give the illusion of being a “chosen one” and therefore fool you into thinking it’s better. Sure, I wasn’t rubbing the front of my body up against the back of a stranger all night, but I also got left out of all the shenanigans onstage. I have no idea what happened during the GPS party. I was just up on 10, literally dancing by myself and chatting with security staff who seemed like they had kind of had enough at that point. They ran out of fucks to give, and so had we. Between salsa dancing with one, to getting a shoulder rub from another (in a porn way), these guys had become our insta-besties. I’ve been saying that I was on a crusade to gather best friends. And I succeeded. With Rose Tours security staff. Hey bois. Get at me.

SO WINDY. So majestic.

SO WINDY. So majestic.

At one point, I looked around and was actually by myself. It was the wee hours of the morning, and I looked up from my pseudo-Cumbia dance moves just in time to see Rae disappear into a doorway, All Access pass floating in the wind behind her, with a security dude who looked a lot like Magneto. But like, a young one. Oh, ok. That was the last I’d see of her, surely. She had been gunning for one of those all weekend. A pass, not a Magneto. One more quick glance saw Jenn clad in a stranger’s sweatshirt, ducking down a flight of stairs into oblivion. And then there was me. Twirling barefoot in the rain, cold and wind, insisting to everyone who looked at me that I wasn’t cold because I was from Michigan. It was only after the awkwardness of my situation dawned on me that I decided I should head back to the cabin and try to get an hour or two of sleep before we were kicked off the ship.

But. I had locked my key in the room. I was in such a hurry to wear a t-shirt that obscured some of my belly that I left it behind. Like an idiot. I knocked on the door but nobody was in there. And nobody was answering my texts. So I did what any logical, sleepy, drunky BH would do. I went to chat with the cute security guard sitting at attention near the New Kids’ rooms. Roosevelt was happy to see me, of course, but I was just complaining about how I needed to lay down. I was hesitant to spend too much time there, since I didn’t want to look like I was stalking the guys in the early Monday morning hours. I literally wasn’t. I swear. I was just about to say that when I heard the shuffling of bare feet coming down the hallway. I looked up and locked eyes with a rumpled Jordan Knight. He jumped, looked genuinely terrified that there was a fan standing there, and then froze. I realized he was nervous I was going to ask him for a selfie, so I laughed, put my hands in front of me like he was a wounded animal, and said, “It’s cool. I’m cool.” He relaxed a little, in his plaid PJ pants and nighty-night t-shirt, asked Roosevelt if he could arrange a wakeup call for 7:00am, and then raided all of Roosevelt’s snacks without permission. It was truly a sight to behold. He padded back to his room, Oreos, chocolate chip cookies and perhaps even a slice of cake in hand, and presumably went to sleep in snacking bliss. It was like seeing a rare, exotic animal in the wild. More afraid of you than you are of them.

In other news, where the hell am I looking? It looks like I'm blind and guessing.

In other news, where the hell am I looking? It looks like I’m blind and guessing.

I said goodnight to Roosy once Rae answered my text and met me back at the room, and became one with my bed for very little time until those dreaded and jarring announcements starting shouting at us all to get the hell off the ship.

I’m sad this is the last installment, but with any luck, some more New Kids-specific stuff will come up that I can write about. Provided I don’t have to buy anything. Because, you know. I’m not a successful adult. Thank you so much for reading these and indulging my need to prolong every little detail of the trip. I sincerely love you all. Most of you all. I at least tolerate you all.

 

NKOTB Cruise 2017 (Part 10: Rain All Day)

Let’s see if I can write this next installment as if I’m still unaware that Donnie knows about this blog. Strap in, it’s going to be a long one.

Sunday after finishing our photo-op while it was still late morning, Rae and I realized that we had several hours before anything was happening, so we napped, which is what you do any time you KNOW for a fact that the New Kids are otherwise occupied. It’s a safe zone. I actually had slept a bit the night before, so my nap was short. I wandered up to Lido to find Jenn and Ana, still in my blue dress, blueberries out.

I hadn’t eaten anything since the ill-fated steak the evening before, but that was no longer in my body. It came out the way it went in. I grabbed a plate full of only fries, to test the waters. I was still pretty shaky, but you know the saying, “fries before dry-heaves”. I’m pretty sure that’s the phrase. Jenn was sitting with a yummy looking Rose Tours security guy, so I joined them to tentatively nibble at my fries and butt into their conversation. Since I’m changing names, let’s call this security dude uh…”Raul”. We were laughing and eating, I was constantly tugging down the sides of my way-too-short-for-daytime dress and over-sharing as usual. Then uh…”Roberto” joined us. As did Ana. And Rae. And uh…”Franklin”. It was a party. And then for some reason the subject of pubic hair came up. Maybe I brought it up. I probably did. But soon I was talking about my “full 70s bush” and Raul and Roberto were piling money on the table in a bid to see what is apparently rare among our generation. Roberto was eyeballs deep in a flirt-fest with Jenn, and Raul was talking up a storm to Ana while Franklin giggled across from Rae. And there I was, weirdly describing my downstairs, without a flirt-partner at all. Go figure. I’m just kidding. Raul DEFINITELY wanted to bone me. He said. But that seemed kind of icky, so I pretended I didn’t notice.

This is what it looks like when I'm sick. Well, this but with more puke.

This is what it looks like when I’m sick. Well, this but with more puke.

It was raining. A lot. There was supposed to be an acoustic concert out on lido that afternoon, to fill time between photos and deck party. But not in the rain. The lido deck was flooded, and Carnival employees were doing a constant, choreographed squeegee dance to keep the water at bay. I choked back several hundred Titanic-related jokes and wondered out loud what the hell we were all going to do with ourselves with no scheduled events for hours, immediately as Donnie got on the loudspeaker to announce that the guys would be “popping up” around the ship for selfie opportunities in the down time. Fools. For lack of anything better to do, the girls and I went back down to deck 7 to hang out in our cabins. At least, we thought that’s what we were doing. Once we stepped off the elevator and saw an enormous crowd of ladies waiting hopefully for a selfie-tunity, we changed our minds. It was swamped. A line formed. Donnie was out, passing out selfies like Oprah with book club stickers. But, you know. I don’t like standing in lines.

Oops.

Oops.

I lost track of Rae (or maybe I just have a fuzzy memory) but I do know that Jenn and I were basically just wandering the ship. Everyone was grumpy and touchy. It was a strange vibe. You can’t leave that many single-minded women to their own devices all day. It’s…sticky. We ended up back on Lido, ran into Raul again and tried to catch an elevator down to the casino, you know, just for funsies. But instead of a clear path, we encountered a clusterfuck selfie line. Again. And the elevators on our side of the line wouldn’t open, but the elevators on the other side of the madness were. So there we were. Jenn and I. Standing inadvertently behind Donnie as he snapped pic after pic with windblown fans. Us, trying to communicate to Cory that we needed to get past everyone to jump in an elevator, but in turn, just sort of getting in the way. Donnie shouted back, “You guys are photo-bombing everyone’s selfies!” and I said, “Oh. My. Gawd!” before we both ducked into some finally-opened doors. Then, of course, we collapsed into a fit of giggles because Donnie yelled at us. It was like getting in trouble with the hot principal. In like a Degrassi episode. Not porn. I promise.

There was a moment when I waited in the lounge on deck 3, because Andrea Barber had tweeted that she’d be down there if anyone wanted to chat or grab a selfie. I love her, so Rae and I waited down there for quite a while. You know, nonchalantly. In my head, she’d be sat at the bar, casually, and I’d plop down next to her and we’d strike up a hilarious conversation and be best friends forever. But you knew that. I want to be best friends with everyone. I’m a bestie whore. What actually happened was every single blockhead who was done with the photo-op, standing in a massive selfie line for Andrea. I’m sure you know that I couldn’t bring myself to stand in line. So I didn’t. We left. Of all my missed selfie-tunities, this is the one I’ll regret the most. I really need to redeem myself for that time I saw her in Vegas and took a selfie in which I look very scared of her.

Do-over, please!

Do-over, please!

Joe graciously filled some time by doing an impromptu concert in a small lounge area, but by the time I got there, it was way too crowded and I couldn’t see anything but the backs of people’s rain-frizzed heads. Pretty much the theme of my trip. So I left. I heard a rumor that Jordan was also supposed to perform, but every time I walked past the jam-packed area, Joe was still singing near a piano. Like, literally for hours. He just sang. For hours. That Broadway baby really does love the spotlight, god bless him. I know the feeling, Joe. I know the feeling. Donnie’s poker tournament was coming to a head in the casino sometime around 7:30, so Rae and I made plans to meet there. If only to stand at a distance at watch Donnie do things. That seems creepy in retrospect, but it’s literally why people go. To just like, watch Donnie be Donnie. Watching poker is not fun. You can’t see anything and it’s not like there’s a play-by-play. I didn’t last long there either. I was antsy. It was my last day and I was finally feeling human again. I needed some action!

Sometimes I LITERALLY know the feeling, because I was also in a boyband.

Sometimes I LITERALLY know the feeling, because I was also in a boyband.

Instead of finding action, I took another nap. Listen, I’m unpredictable. I said to “strap in”, didn’t I? I was doing my best Rae impression, sleeping on my back, when she walked into the cabin with Z, saying, “see, she’s awake. It’s fine.” Z wasn’t able to get off the boat in Cozumel, so Rae gave him some extra souvenirs she had bought so his kids didn’t think he was a huge jerk of a dad when he got home before disappearing out the door with him again. So thoughtful. I’m not keen on dads (daddy issues) so I was indifferent. I’m sorry I said the word “daddy”. I’ll just say “zaddy” from now on. But it’ll be a vastly different context. Anyway, we were all a little worried that the lido deck party would be cancelled because of the storm, but were reassured by Z that Donnie himself said they wouldn’t cancel. And, as I was publicly told this morning on Twitter, Donnie doesn’t lie.

 

 

 

NKOTB Cruise 2017 (Part 9: Photo-Op)

(Do your homework! Read parts 1-8 HERE)

I was trying to wait for the group photos to be posted before I wrote this, and it was half procrastination, half waiting for inspiration. As we get further and further from the actual cruise, it becomes more difficult to remember events in the exhaustive detail I like to write. But, since Babs is surely at the mercy of the New Kids (he said the other day that he has the photos edited and uploaded and they’ll be to us soon), and since “soon” means whatever Donnie wants it to mean, I figured I’d better just get this one out without the photo evidence.

Here's LAST year's photo. Don't get too excited. It's just an example of the format for those who haven't seen it.

Here’s LAST year’s photo. Don’t get too excited. It’s just an example of the format for those who haven’t seen it.

Sunday was a rough start, I’m not going to lie. I spent the previous night/early morning vomiting my life away in the cabin while my Trouble Trifecta had the most fun without me. But the morning of our photo-op had arrived, and it was pretty much the only face time we were getting with the guys, so I was not going to miss it. Plus, it was the last day. A bittersweet thing for someone who just sort of wanted to be on dry land, but maybe bring the New Kids with her. I had had a pretty crappy experience thus far, and was determined to turn it all around for the last day. So I got up, got dressed, and beat my damn face like a bad bitch. Rae was still in bed, writhing from a horrendous hangover. She wandered back to the cabin sometime around 7am. It was 10. I felt for her. Sort of. At least she hurt because she had fun. I hurt because my body really hates motion. I wonder if I can use that excuse if I’m tired during sex…

We already had a full photo group, at least. I had to recruit one last Jon girl by promising I’d grab her butt and write her into this blog. My intention was that I’d spend some time with her to make that first thing happen, and then the second would follow organically. But I was so sick, I barely even got to speak to her. Jenn J., I’m sorry I didn’t grab your butt. Please forgive me. We were supposed to meet the rest of the girls in our photo group sometime around 9am, but obviously, had to push that back a few times. Rae did manage to get ready in under 20 minutes, which was unprecedented. I’m sure it had something to do with her funereal sleep-pose, but still. Now we knew she could do it. Most of the girls were already in line, so we wandered up to the front to get in our pre-set group of 10, and waited in nauseated silence for the line to start moving. I was taking a big risk by wearing burgundy lipstick instead of blue. Donnie had recognized me with red lipstick at the after-party, so…I had hope that he wasn’t face blind after all. I wasn’t standing with him this year, either. I was with Joe. My forever-favorite. So there were risks all around. I’d only have about 4 and a half seconds to speak to Donnie as I walked past him to get situated next to Joe before the click of that way-too-fast camera. How was I supposed to convey that I needed him to help me get famous? To introduce me to Jenny so we can all be best friends forever? To let me play a dead body on Blue Bloods? To share one of my blog posts, at the very least? I was stressing. It goes so fast. I know this. Last year I panicked, and I’ve panicked in every meet-n-greet photo I’ve ever had. But I was determined to not be weird.

Loved them since I was this little gal.

Loved them since I was this little gal.

Being normal when you’re seasick and face to face with men you’ve literally idolized since birth is a tall order. And no, I didn’t pull it off. Z was there, helping everyone onto the small stage (and no doubt looking at butts). So I mentioned something about his ever-present sweatpants to break the tension a bit. Then I greeted Danny in the exact same way it happened last year. By forcing him to look at me because I was aggressively standing in front of him and saying, “Hi Danny.” in a dry voice. He sort of tap-hugged me and I moved on. That was a fair response. But then it was Donnie. He grabbed me into a hug and said, “I adore you.” My whole body collapsed into a pile of fangirl dust, and I said, “Aw, I’m glad you recognize me without my blue lipstick!” He replied, “Uh yeah, I’m a fan!” Before pulling me into one more hug. And then I blacked out. I have a memory of touching his sweater and saying, “I like this sweater.” But I could have made that up. It seems too normal. Who knows. I do know that as I walked the 6 inches to Jordan, I said over my shoulder, “Keep watchin’ the show!” and then got so pissed at myself. I meant Inaccurate & Inappropriate, of course. But sheesh. I know he was just being nice when he said he was a fan. I know he doesn’t have time to keep up with my comedy. But in the moment, I panicked. Like I do. Then I transferred that panic to Jordan, said hello and had to initiate a hug. Which is something I am NOT good at. It was ass-out, double-tap for sure. Jordan did say, “Look at you!” which at first I was pleased with (I was wearing a VERY tight/short blue dress and am always low on confidence) but in retrospect, that’s something I say to toddlers when I don’t know what else to say about their weird twirl.

Donnie liked this status and then I was embarrassed that I posted it. Someone teach me to be cool.

Donnie liked this status and then I was embarrassed that I posted it. Someone teach me to be cool.

Shaking my head, but chalking it up to just another in a series of awkward interactions with Jordan, I moved on to Joe. He asked how I was doing, and I answered, “Pretty damn seasick!”. Because of course I’d want the man I thought I was going to marry as a literal baby to picture me vomiting. Of course. He said, “Hehe…yeah, it’s bad this year”, and gently prodded me into position for the photo. I have no memory of what I did for this photo. I can pretty much guarantee I forgot to suck in my stomach and stand up straight. Which means instead of my sexy hourglass silhouette, which can only be achieved if all levers and pullies are working correctly, I likely look like my name is Violet Beauregarde and I ate the wrong piece of gum. But we’ll see. If one of my arm-rolls is showing, I sincerely quit. I don’t know what I quit. But I quit.

Here's a good example of what it looks like when I forget to suck in my belly.

Here’s a good example of what it looks like when I forget to suck in my belly.

In the daze that happens right after your photo is snapped, I stepped up to Jon, said something (literally cannot remember what), hugged him and zombie-walked out of there. And I kept that damn dress on all day. Blueberries and all.

 

NKOTB Cruise 2017 (Part 8: Evil Dead)

(Catch up on all the fun of parts 1-7 here)

Once back on the ship, I made a tequila-mess of many conversations on Lido, including one with the lovely Reagan, the “bridezilla” from season one of Rock This Boat, “The Scots” from season one of Rock This Boat (and my heart, because I love them) and Tina. Who informed me that I told her last year that I didn’t like her. Oops. Usually I lie about stuff like that. I don’t even really dislike her that much. I must have been feeling salty that day. Sorry, Tina.

Luckily for everyone else on the ship, Joe was doing a show in the theater. Whenever there’s a solo show like this, especially with Joe, I have no idea what it means. Last year, Joe’s solo time involved a monologue about how he kind of wants to suck a dick. So I was pretty pumped to see what kind of ridiculousness we were in for that afternoon. Because, it was the middle of the afternoon, still. Rae had already gone to the show, probably having had enough of me for the day, understandably. Jenn and I wrapped up our lido-drinks with The Scots and headed that way ourselves. Jenn couldn’t finish her disgusting, blue sugar-booze, and I don’t like wasting $10 drinks, so I offered to take it off her hands before we parted ways for our very disparate seats in the theater.

I annoyed everyone already seated in my row with my big butt, and found my way to my seat near the middle, behind that big ass pole. Rae greeted me and we discussed the marble penis a bit more before Joe came onstage and delighted us with his two 1999 hits, “Stay the Same” and “I Love You Came Too Late”. There may have been other songs, but those are the only two my post-post-post adolescent heart cared about. But then. It got weird. Weirder than his dick-sucking soliloquy. You see, Joe has been into meditation lately. And whatever, that’s cool, man. Do what you need to do. But. Meditation definitely isn’t a spectator sport. Listen, I once said that I’d watch Harry Styles do anything. I’d watch him pick out an avocado for an hour. But I didn’t mean it. So, when Joe ACTUALLY meditated. On stage. FOR FIVE WHOLE MINUTES. I lost it. I couldn’t retain my composure. I’d like to blame it on the tequila, but. That would’ve been excruciatingly awkward to my soberest self. But drunk Kaira couldn’t hold in the giggle-snorts. And die-hard fans around me did not care for it. Oops, again.

This. FOR FIVE MINUTES.

This. FOR FIVE MINUTES.

After the LITERAL FIVE FULL MINUTES of JUST MEDITATION. I can’t stress enough that he set a timer. Assumed the position. And then actually sat in silence while a theater of like 1500 people stared at him. Some of us giggle-snorting out of pure disbelief. I don’t want anyone thinking I’m a hater. I love Joe. He’s my forever favorite. My “I first got horny 2 U” guy. (Mom, Grandma, that’s an SNL sketch. Don’t worry.) But. Come on. When he asked the audience if anyone had moved to a different country and wanted to talk about it for a bit, I lost it. And when he pulled someone onstage who then chatted about all of her military moves, I had to leave. I couldn’t sit there any longer. Especially not with Miss EE, Seat 29 all over my jock. I was going to get myself in trouble.

I'm not lying.

I’m not lying.

Luckily, the other girls were equally as annoyed, and hungry. We all met in the formal dining room for another try at a decent meal. I’ll eat almost anything when I’m drunk. Including Taco Bell. So, I devoured whatever was put in front of me without much complaint. I believe I started with the shrimp cocktail, then tried a medium rare steak that they managed to cook pretty decently to my specifications. But then it was nap time. Nap time for sure. I mean, after some hilarious foul play with the marble penises, of course. And yes, I did post this on social media. I have no shame.

It was Neon Night, the night I was most looking forward to. So the plan was to nap off the tequila a bit, then get ready and hit the Lido deck early enough to get a good spot for the deck party. Instead, I woke up with a combination hangover/seasickness that left me cabin-bound all night, and into the not-so-early morning. I missed everything. EVERYTHING. I got intimate with the cabin toilet, and said a pretty gruesome goodbye to that medium rare steak. I wished for death as my head and stomach spun while Rae put several glowing items on her body and did her makeup, hoping I’d feel better by the time she was done. I did not. I drifted in and out of sleep while Jenn, Rae and the rest of our friends got into the VIP area on deck 10. While they danced the night away with Jenny McCarthy’s dad and made friends with countless security guards. While they all had the time of their lives in the after-party, dancing and sweating and making inside jokes that I’m still pretty mad about, I cried and tried to figure out how much money I was wasting by being sick instead of having fun. But that just made it worse. Because there was nothing I could do. I already had the seasickness patch on. And Lorde knows it wasn’t the tequila that did it. I’m a standup comic. It’ll take more than a few shots of tequila to make me puke. Trust.

I just had to lay there, sort of listening to New Kids TV as I imagined my Trouble Trifecta having the absolute best time without me. Which of course they were. And the worst part is that I didn’t even get to glow.

 

NKOTB Cruise 2017 (Part 7: Port of Cozumel)

(Missed parts 1-6? Find them here!)

On the last cruise, Jenn and I had the time of our lives just sitting in a particular bar in Cozumel, and we were hell bent on doing it again. We made a pact with Rae several months ago that we would all get off the boat by 11 at the latest, and nab the closest cab to el centro for maximum tequila time. Except. Jenn and Rae scheduled massages on the ship at 10am. Which means they didn’t even get back to the room until after 11, sweaty and full of rogue lactic acid. I was shakily putting makeup on, as hungover as could be, and was becoming visibly irritated. Our window for getting off the ship was closing.

I’m pretty high maintenance, but will be gross if the situation calls for it. Rae is high maintenance without give. She needs at least 12 hours to get ready for any given situation. That’s an exaggeration, of course, but she does take forever. So when she mentioned that she’d have to shower, wash her hair, and start her makeup from scratch, I pretty much threw a tantrum. Then she graciously said that Jenn and I could go without her and she’d meet up with us later. After all, Jenn and I had an errant husband to find. Estefano was our bartender last year in Cozumel and he was so adorable, Jenn and I declared ourselves sister wives when we left. Rae wanted in on that situation. And we were ready to induct her. So I left with Jenn, assuring Rae that we’d save her a swing. Because. This bar didn’t have barstools. It had swings, instead. It is so much fun. At least, I remembered it being fun.

I don’t know if you know this about Mexico, but it is hot. And bright. And when you’re hungover it’s just about the worst air-situation you could imagine. I started sweating the second I stepped off the ship, and never stopped. Even now, I’m still sweating. My entire physiology has changed because of those few Mexican hours. Last year, we happened upon this delightful bar by accident. So we had no idea where it was. I was going to wing it (because I’m dumb) but Jenn had done her research. She found out that the bar in question was called Habanero’s, so that’s where we told the cab driver to take us. And then I heard them joking about taking us to the supermarket. I speak a tiny bit of Spanish, but not enough to convey to these people that we wanted to go to the bar with swings, called Habanero’s. The cab driver insisted he knew what we meant, then dropped us off in front of Habano’s. Which is not at all the same thing. So we wandered aimlessly in the sweltering heat, speaking terrible Spanglish to passersby until finally, someone said, “Oh, Mr. Pepper’s?” and pointed us in the right direction.

No. HABANEROS.

No. HABANEROS.

First of all, it’s not our fault everyone on that damn island refers to it by a nickname and doesn’t have cognitive reasoning skills. I’m kidding, of course. We were the dumb Americans who couldn’t speak enough Spanish to convey that we DID know a habanero is a pepper, but that we wanted to go to the BAR that was CALLED Habanero’s. It was a whole thing. But we made it. And it was still really, really hot in there. My skin was made of salt-water by that point, so I gave up on looking even a little attractive. I had my trusty blue lipstick on, though, and Marbella the bartender recognized me from last year’s shenanigans. We were appropriately excited to see her, and then devastated to learn that our prodigal husband had moved on. Not from this world, presumably, but from his job as a bartender. We were divorced.

We did notice a few familiar faces a few swings down, though. Several Rose Tours employees had chosen our out-of-the-way watering hole as well, which put a tiny damper on our apparent tradition of having Marbella play us NKOTB songs from her phone. We didn’t want to remind these poor souls of work while they were on their short-lived break. So, Jenn and I ordered chips and dips and margaritas the size of our heads and obviously took a tequila shot or two. We swung to our heart’s content until the Rose Tours guys had to get back to the boat. Then it was on. Marbella grabbed a phone from one of the barbacks and gave it to me. I was the DJ now. I played the requisite NKOTB tunes over the bar’s speaker system, and our new friends whose names I have forgotten (Lovely lady and Faux Jordan, I’m sorry) swing-danced with us. See what I did there? Because that’s a type of dance, but we were literally swing-dancing. I’m so funny.

I'm not sure how to say Trouble Trifecta in Spanish.

I’m not sure how to say Trouble Trifecta in Spanish.

Then, just as we were talking shit about how there was no way she was going to show up, Rae walked into our lives. We broke the news of the divorce, and she self-soothed with a drink. By that point, I was three sheets to the wind. I was done. Marbella was handing out free shots of tequila like she wanted to marry us, and I can’t say no to free tequila. Then it was time to head back to port and back onto the boat. As drunk eyes tend to do, ours wandered and got distracted by a shop selling lifesize “pen holders” that were literally just stone penises. And they were 2 for $10. What a deal! No sane person would pass it up. So Jenn bought two. One for her, one for me. And it is my prized possession.

This picture is self-explanatory.

This picture is self-explanatory.

On the gangway (is that a thing with ships? I think it’s a thing.), we ran into Christina, Dan and crew and I’m pretty sure I talked to a few people about my new stone penis but I was several shots of tequila deep and unable to form lasting connections. If my photo-sleuthing is correct, we narrowly missed Joe Mac getting back on the boat and taking pictures with a few lucky people by the cheesy photo-op. I’m pretty thankful I didn’t see him, to be honest. Because I was a hot tequila mess who couldn’t shut up about her new stone penis.

Do I look drunk to you?

Do I look drunk to you?

NKOTB Cruise 2017 (Part 6: Superhero Night)

(Please read parts 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 if you haven’t already!)

It has just come to my attention that I completely forgot about the mother effing CONCERT that we enjoyed on Friday evening before Superhero night. My timeline is a mess. Between seasickness, vodka and adrenaline, I have no idea when anything happened. Or even if it happened, tbh. So yeah, there was a concert! I saw some of it as I nestled into the right breast of the woman next to me. Both sexually and so I could see around the giant pole in front of my seat. And obviously it was delightful. You all know this. You were there. They’re goddamn delightful when they get microphones in their hands. And anytime I can watch Jon struggle through choreography, I’m happy. He’s a mess. A beautiful, beautiful mess. I’d love to be another notch in his best friend belt. So. Putting that out into the universe to speak it into existence. Unless he makes me go outside or stop eating meat or something. Then I’m out.

So. We thought for sure we’d be able to hit the deck party a little earlier that night, since the show got out fairly early and we just had to throw on some unitards. But no. It was a whole thing. I mentioned before that we had way too much spandex and lofty delusions about our appearances. This was never more evident than on Superhero night. I was dressed as The Flash, Jenn was The Green Lantern, and having exhausted other costume options over the weeks leading up to the cruise, Rae landed on The Joker (sort of). Rae is a lot more cognizant of what looks good on her. Jenn and I just sort of said, “Ass out, class out!” and shrugged. I made sure to get good and buzzed before putting on my dreaded leotard. I hadn’t bought any Spanx or other “sucky inny” undergarments for some reason. So I just had to go out into the world with my body being the shape of my body. I jumped into some fishnets and then zipped myself into the thickest material I’ve ever had the pleasure of sweating in. And for some reason, I thought I was killin’ it. I even stuffed some tissue in the outsides of my boobs to push them together more. Cleavage is a process. Half my ass was hanging out, and I knew damn well I had cellulite. But my buzzed mind thought fishnets were magic erasers.

Just my body-shaped body. My grandma commented, "Nice view", so at least I have that going for me.

Just my body-shaped body. My grandma commented, “Nice view”, so at least I have that going for me.

So I was strutting. So was Jenn. We were twinsies in outfit and makeup…and ass. Obviously, we brought those asses over to Roosevelt to say a quick hello. He approved. Then we saw all five New Kids file into the elevators to head up to Lido. Then we ran into Z and got held up even more. It was already nearing midnight. We hadn’t even set foot on Lido yet. But. I was REALLY feeling this costume, so I wanted to go be seen.

Once we stepped onto Lido, the wind hit my butt cheeks and I began to reconsider. There was absolutely nowhere to go, and I was already sweating. Jenn and I decided to descend into the crowd and try to find Christina, Dan and co. if only to see what adorable outfits they were wearing. While fighting elbows and straight up humidity, I heard a yell from close to the stage. It was Brandon, giving me a big thumbs up for my outfit. But, realistically, it could only have been in approval of the top part of my head. It was too hot and crowded to stay there in our scuba-material outfits, so Jenn and I headed back to our safe space behind the pool to awkwardly dance around without our butt-jiggles causing the boat to rock more than it already was. The only saving grace was Jon and Donnie dressed hilariously as the Ambiguously Gay Duo. Like. Nothing could ever be more perfect. I laughed out loud. For almost too long. Moving on…We tried to lean into the amount of ass, taking butt-to-butt pictures that’ll never see the light of day. Melissa Lima strutted by, also rocking fishnets and buttcheeks, but doing it with a damn cheat code or something. She insisted that we looked “AMAZING” because she’s a really kind liar, and then said, “Fix your tits!” and made me tighten my bra straps to lift my sad torpedoes to attention. I’ll always thank her for that.

Here's me, thinking I looked GOOOOOOD.

Here’s me, thinking I looked GOOOOOOD.

It was nearing 2am and my feet, knees and will to live were hurting. We made an executive decision to go grab some pizza and take a short nap before the after party. So we could be fresh-ish. As fresh as one can be when they’ve been sweating into three-inch thick, vagina-hugging material for several hours. I mentioned before how Rae is an expert at sleeping like she’s at her own funeral. She seriously folds her hands, smooths her hair and sleeps without messing up anything about her look. I thought I’d take a cue from her and try the same thing. I didn’t have time to redo any makeup before the after party if I wanted to catch any sleep. So I looked over at Rae to get some pointers, snapped a quick photo because I was sure I’d need it for blog reasons, and then fell asleep myself. Doing what I thought was the exact same funereal pose.

Yep. Exactly the same. Just two sleeping beauties. THE SAME.

Yep. Exactly the same. Just two sleeping beauties. THE SAME.

Evidently, Rae also took a picture of me, but only one of us is a big jerkface. She swore she’d never let that picture into the world, but I have no shame so here it is. It sums up my tendency to exaggerate my attractiveness in my mind more than anything I’ve ever seen.

Even though we swore all night that we were so uncomfortable with our asses out, none of us changed before going to the after party. We all just strutted in, past the line of hopeful Blockheads waiting to get in. Melissa smacked me so hard on the ass that it’s actually STILL jiggling, and we headed straight for the dance floor. I like to do this thing where if I know Donnie (or anyone even remotely famous) is near me, I pretend I am way too cool to care about it. This usually backfires in a big way since I have yet to get a selfie with any of them on these cruises. I got another drink, popped a Stacker (remember those from high school?) and started dancing like it was Wall to Wall Wednesday at The Margarita Grille. That’s a very local reference, and I apologize. But you can imagine. I had sweat dripping down my face. My hair was just wet at that point. But I kept dancing. If I stopped dancing, I was pretty sure I’d drop dead. Actually dead. Plus, Donnie was bopping around the dance floor. I know “Breakfast Club” is a lot like fight club, in that we’re not supposed to talk about it and maybe some of the people there are just a fragment of someone’s severe mental illness, but whatever. Donnie caught my eye on the crowded dance floor and grabbed me into a giant hug while someone else reenacted “freak dancing” from 7th grade way too close to him.

I can't post pics from the after party because they're bannnnned.

I can’t post pics from the after party because they’re bannnnned.

I fear I’ve been friendzoned by Donnie Wahlberg. I have no idea how to explain that in a way that doesn’t make me sound like a creep. But I don’t mean it in the way that douchey guys who say, “salutations, m’lady” mean it. I just mean that he smiles, wraps me in a hug and smooches my forehead or cheeks when he sees me. It’s very…”this girl is such a card!” Does that make sense? It makes me feel an innocence I threw in the garbage and lit on fire years ago. And that’s totally ok with me. But I do think he’d be horrified to hear some of my comedy material. Because. Reasons.

After that lovely moment, I swam through the sea of frantic dancing to get to the stairs. Making the dance floor resemble a literal pit was a terrible idea. There is no air in there. No air, no air. Read that in a Jordin Sparks voice. Or Chris Brown if you’re punchy. But I did take a moment to lock eyes with a beautiful brunette who I feel is from a South American country (but I literally have nothing to base that on) and have a short-lived dance battle. She smiled as I struggled to keep up, and I had to call it quits before I shit out a lung. I was dying. I had to call it. I couldn’t breathe or stand anymore and there was so much sweat all over my body that I was afraid I’d start to slip through cracks, Alex Mac style. It was gross.

 

 

NKOTB Cruise 2017 (Part 5: Day 2)

Stay with me, folks. I just took a little too much Robitussin to get rid of the Berg Flu that keeps on keepin’ on. And let’s just say that I’m feelin’ real weird with it. And apparently I no longer use Gs at the ends of words. I’m 80% sure that what I’m about to write is a true account of what happened on the cruise. But it’s been almost two weeks since it happened. So.

With an interior cabin, there’s no way to know what the hell time of day it is on the ship. This is great for a NKOTB Cruise specifically, since you have to just sleep whenever you can fit it in, regardless of the sun’s position. Thursday night was the only time we slept during conventional hours. Ish. Waking up around 10am, Rae and I decided to prop the door open again, to encourage passersby to see how gross we are. Really, it’s because we were on deck 7 and heard that everyone just does that. In case of a New Kid sighting or something. Nevermind that I didn’t have eyebrows on yet, or that my bare legs were very hairy. I was sitting cross-legged in bed, sort of chatting with Rae, when who should come wandering in, but our new best friend Z. I say best friend because this sweatpants-clad piece of man-meat hopped into bed with us like we were at a damn slumber party. Right in the crack between our two twin beds. I was bracing myself to swat away his hands because I was 100% sure he was going to french braid my hair or ask if we wanted to play “light as a feather, stiff as a board”. He flounced, y’all. Google that word if you have to. I mean, there aren’t really any chairs in there, so I don’t blame him, but it was the level of familiarity that threw me off. I didn’t even have a bra on. My sad torpedoes were at ease. Of course, Rae looked adorable in her matching PJ set and perfectly “rumpled” hair. I did not. I looked like if Frank Gallagher were a 32-year old woman.

My morning look.

My morning look.

So there we were, three girlfriends, gabbing about boys. Me, Rae and the ultra-buff Z. We talked about my comedy career, about our real lives and about our “personas” on the boyband ship we were currently riding. Then something sparked Z’s memory and he pulled out two wristbands for that night’s VIP after-party. FINALLY. Kind of let me down on the magic of it all, though. Pulling something out of your sweatpants pocket isn’t really making them magically appear. I don’t want to get too hung up on the details, but I mean…I like a good illusion every once in a while. Except. We needed two more bracelets. We had a foursome. That wouldn’t do. He said he’d go “look” for more, and then said he had to wake Donnie up at 10:30 for the photo-op for Group B. It was 10:32. So off he went to rouse the D-Dub after likely only 3 hours of sleep. And I bet he still looked amazing. Donnie and Brandon Reichert are in the same warlock coven.

He even looks good when he's talking. And I look like a dog who's confused about sounds.

He even looks good when he’s talking. And I look like a dog who’s confused about sounds.

It was around 11am and we were awake and with nothing concrete to occupy our time. It was weird. Group B’s photo-op would take up most of the day, so we knew we didn’t have to be on high alert for a New Kid sighting. So we went to get breakfast. Which I honestly didn’t even know was a thing last year. Sure enough, the buffet had french toast and eggs and sausages, oh my! The trouble trifecta got into a little argument about how cooked eggs should be, I won because my palate is the most refined. And then we sat. Trying to ignore the rocking ship long enough to drag a piece of egg-bread through a puddle of syrup. We saw Christina and Dan, shortly after sitting down and grabbed them to debrief about their photo-op. Christina was full of special Joe moments, as she tends to be, and she and Dan (Faux Joe, excuse me) were appropriately outraged that the icky fireman had confronted me the night before. Faux Joe and I talked a bit about how odd it was for strangers to approach us as if they knew us, but agreed we kinda liked it. Then Jenn, Rae and I moved on to try to squeeze in a nap.

They're like the damn king and queen of the adult boyband prom.

They’re like the damn king and queen of the adult boyband prom.

The downtime on the ship, much like my cold-medicine brain right now, is a big mushy fog. But I do know that sometime after breakfast, Z reappeared in our cabin with two more wristbands, so our fearsome foursome might be whole again at that night’s after party. It was then that he told us some juicy tidbits about his career as a bodyguard, stunt man, and small-part actor on Blue Bloods and, wait for it…The Sex and the City Movie. Remember when Jennifer Hudson is unpacking Carrie’s things and the delivery man tries to get a look at her goodies? She says, “Ain’t nothin’ in there for you” and we all squeal? Well, that leering man is Z. He was convinced I hadn’t seen the movie since I didn’t immediately realize it was him. But listen. I’ve seen that movie a hundred times. I am basically Carrie Bradshaw. If she was fat, brunette, 15 years younger and VERY poor. And I can’t find any evidence on the internet to back up this claim. So I guess I’m gonna watch the damn movie again with Z in mind. I blame the tears on him. I really do.

We closed out our chill day by heading to the formal dining room for dinner. It’s important to do that at least once per cruise so you have something to complain about the rest of the time. The menu always looks so promising, but the food is overcooked trash. You know what sounds amazing? Scallops to start, and then prime rib and a baked potato, with a creme brulee happy ending. Sounds good. Was trash. The scallops were the size of quarters and just as hard. The prime rib was a dull brown all the way through. I even asked for it to be cooked rare, citing their tendency to overcook EVERYTHING. But the server assured me they do not have that problem with prime rib. I’m hoping it’s a cultural difference so I can give him the benefit of the doubt. And then the creme brulee. You guys. It was so overcooked it tasted and felt like scrambled eggs. Not the good kind I like, but the hard, lumpy kind that Jenn and Rae like to choke down. It almost ruined my favorite dessert for me for the rest of eternity. Almost.