ComplexCon returns to Long Beach Nov. 6 - 7 with hosts J. Balvin and Kristen Noel Crawley, performances by A$AP Rocky and Turnstile, and more shopping and drops.
Secure your spot while tickets last!
My friend recently invited me to an event that billed itself as "an evening in the clouds," involving a hot air balloon flight, a dinner by a renowned chef and a performance by an "award-winning" musician. My mind instantly transported me to this fantasy night of eating crab legs in a hot air balloon with my napkin tucked into my shirt (I would be mobbing like that), while Josh Groban serenaded me with his latest adult contemporary slappers. My fingers banged out the reply "I'm down" at 12-year-old girl texting speed.
After a few days of waiting to see if I was being Punk'd or not, the day finally arrived. My friend informed me that stretch SUV limos would be taking us 45 minutes north of LA to Disney's Golden Oak Ranch. We got in the limo and claimed the back seats in order to control the AUX. After realizing we had no AUX, we became in charge of switching the radio station from rap to alternative rock and then back to rap. The dress code called for "upscale alt" so we naturally came with our strongest alt-goth looks. The rest of our limo brought "we actually make money" looks. When our party realized that the limo was only stocked with Stella (the event's sponsor), we made the driver stop at the nearest liquor store to cop some Tres Commas Tequila Patron and wine.
After a few cocktails, I broke my rule of "never talk to anyone ever" and found out that everyone in our limo was either a publicist, model or knew a publicist or model. After lengthy drive involving zero bathroom breaks, we stepped into this field that felt like the VIP of Bizzaro World Coachella Weekend 72. We grabbed a Stella, some hors d'oeuvres and ran into this girl named Gogo who ended up being an op who thinkpiece'd our entire fucking night was very friendly, but seemed to linger a bit because she was at the event by herself. Gogo told us she worked for Newsweek. We ended up eating dinner with her and bearded freelancer Luke O'Neil.
The rest of the night was fun. The award-winning performer was John Legend, who did about five songs. The food was good. There was no line for drinks. Most importantly, everything was free and we deserved absolutely none of it. The hot air balloon ride ended up involving getting in a hot air balloon for roughly 2 minutes while it went up roughly 35 feet before heading straight back down again roughly. It felt a bit like false advertising as we were nowhere near a cloud let alone above the clouds, but, then again, it was 35 feet higher than I have ever been in a hot air balloon.
Towards the end of the night, Gogo asked me for my Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat and Facebook, which seemed a bit odd, but I was drinking so, like, fuck it. Another one of my rules is that you only ask for social network handles after 2 to 4 years of knowing a person. She wanted to keep partying and head to Hollywood to meet her friend after the Lana Del Rey concert. It was past our bedtime, so we politely declined and got in the limo to head back. A few days later, Gogo dropped her thinkpiece bomb on us and, well, got me thinking about thinkpieces.
Is no one safe? Is everyone #content? Does every event have meaning? These questions ran through my head in Carles' voice (RIP). Gogo took some shots, clowned on the event a bit and ended up comparing modern day branded events to ancient Roman orgies because sex sells. In actuality, it all felt more like a relatively well run and enjoyable corporate event that was attended and documented by people fortunate enough to have the right connections. Shouts out Gogo for writing about us and shouts out Stella for feeding our broke faces. Thinkpiecers gonna thinkpiece.
Robesman is a former brand, now human thinkpiece. Follow him on Twitter here.