If you've never been to one of these parties, the general idea is that when the first season of TAR was coming to an end, a couple of the New York forum posters suggested that finding a Manhattan bar where they could get together to watch the last episode. That was the way this started a year ago. This December, we basically took over an entire bar, and were visited by nineteen TAR3 racers, nineteen former racers, and Phil. Not only that, but according to almost every racer we talked to, we were able to rescue them from a truly abysmal CBS party. CBS had better watch out, or their party is going to become the equivalent of the prom at my high school, where nobody really cared about the prom, but everyone had fun at the after-prom party. What follows is a recap of the party, in traditional recap style, sort of as if it were an episode, despite the fact that it isn't an episode. It was a party. Yes, "Alli" of the recap is me. Yes, I am referring to myself in the third person. Yes, I am recapping myself. Yes, it is completely me-centric, because the things I was there for were the things I saw, if you get my meaning. Yes, some of the things like subtitles are imaginary, but everything else is true. If any of this seems odd to you, you'll just have to learn to cope.
Drunken careening cameramen dive down the stairs of what the little white subtitles tell us is Proof, a New York bar that is to be the location of TARcon 3: This Time, There's A Cover Charge! There are approximately forty thousand people in the downstairs section of the bar, or so it appears from the way they're crammed in. Back to back and belly to belly, as they say. Alli is seated on a bench against the wall right under the TV, and for some reason, she has a bunch of gifts. Considering that I suspect she's about to mooch drinks for about the next six hours, it seems to me that she hardly needs gifts, but that's just me. She appears to have a Christmas stocking, a write-on/wipe-off board shaped like a television, and a stuffed donkey, among other things. If you watched last season's TARCon, you know that she got a stuffed white sheep, so it's quite the menagerie she's putting together. We get a close-up of the tin of cookies she's holding, and apparently, they are shaped like racers. Hee. There are naked twins and gingham-shirt twins. Hee, again. Lawtalkin' Guy comes over, plunks down, and drops an arm around her shoulder. "Whatcha drinkin', honey?" "Rum and coke," she says. BZZZZT. That is a seriously bad decision. She is going to get really hot and dusty in a room this crowded, and cocktails are going to make her way too drunk way too quickly. Rum is no thirst-quencher. While he's at the bar, she looks around at the little collection of presents on the table in front of her. "I'm going to cry, is what's going to happen," she says. "I'm going to cry." Oh, bring her her drink, or she's going to get really maudlin. Unsurprisingly, given the close quarters and attendant sweat, she peels off the black shirt she has over her sweater, leaving her in red, which wouldn't be funny, except that The Amazing Editors cut back to a sequence of her in her hotel room -- apparently getting ready for the party earlier -- saying to Dallas and KTyger, "I'm not wearing red again. No more red. I wore red last time, and I can't look at one more picture of myself wearing red." We see her emerge from the hotel room bathroom in a gray shirt under the same black button-down. She peers at herself in the mirror. "Eeew, too corporate." Now she comes out again in the red and black. "I wasn't feeling the gray," she mutters to her bored roommates, who are trapped with her like miners after a collapse. "I can't do gray. And this is just a little bit of red. I can stand a little bit of red." Oh, my God, just wear something already. We cut back to the party, where she has ditched the black shirt and is once again a loud blare of red, sticking out like a colorized fire hydrant in an Ansel Adams print. If she was going for "inconspicuous," she missed by about three miles. And a half.
Once she sucks down the rum and Coke, Alli gives up her seat and stands up, as if she's going somewhere. Of course, there is nowhere to go. She stands for about three minutes before abruptly getting shorter. It takes a minute to realize that she just took her shoes off. At a bar. Apparently the entire thing is now some kind of exercise in hepatitis acquisition. Moreover, there is another funny cut back to the hotel room earlier, where she is fussing over shoes. "There are these shoes" -- she holds up the ones she just took off -- "and there are these shoes," and she holds up a pair of black heels with pointy toes that probably would have killed her dead in about five minutes. Way to bring nothing but uncomfortable shoes, bonehead. At any rate, now she's barefoot, in among about a hundred and fifty people in big, heavy shoes. If she escapes with all her toes, I will be shocked.