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After having posted about my Madonna meeting and pic-with, I thought I'd put some distance between that and this post—my wrap-up of the entire Truth or Dare fragrance event—to spare those Boy Culture readers who aren't Madonnaphiles.
Attendees (including many friends, like Anthony, Angel, Jeannie and more) were lined up facing east at the side of Macy's and press and photographers were clotted around the entrance to the tent area right out front. Photographers are a motley crew (not the band).
I had one skanky woman turn and say, "Are you press? Yes? Oh, if you weren't I was going to say to back up." Then, a minute later, she turned to say, "No, seriously—back up." (We were all jammed together and I was in no way on top of her.)
Saw my buddy Bruce, an event photographer I met via the mail (remember that?) 20 years ago when he was running Sandra Bernhard's fan club and killed time reading people with him (a text he got from a famous Madonna anti-fan asking him, sarcastically, to say hello was too juicy for me to print!), then chatted with my equally fabulous shutterbug pal Greg.
Surprisingly, when the press line was formed (they call out names as looky-loos swarm the area), my name was actually on it! I wound up at the very end of the print and video interviews and just before the photographers, a good spot for my hinted-at photo op. One of the PRs for Macy's came by and offered us all free samplers. I am not a fragrance boy (though I am still turned on by sniffing a 20-year-old sampler of "Jacomo" an old flame once wore), but it smells good. It has a humid flower garden scent that seems to change aromas the longer you wear it. She should totally do one for men. And boys.
Manager Guy Oseary came first and was working those in the press line that he knew. He said the tour is going to be mind-blowing and again stressed the idea that she was tied up in rehearsals, though she did make time for some TV interviews the same night.
Madonna makes up for coming from a "smelly" town
One thing I noticed was that out of all the music blaring in the tent, most was not by Madonna, let alone her new album. "Give Me All Your Luvin'" definitely played, but there were quite a few interesting choices, such as "Groove is in the Heart" by Dee-Lite (whose lead singer LOATHES Madonna), "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" by Cyndi Lauper (a one-time rival and the song some have bitched is appropriated by "Girls Gone Wild") and also tunes by the late Michael Jackson and Whitney Houston. But to get back to Madonna songs, "Material Girl" showed up, too.
And speaking of which, when the Material Girl showed up, there was a hush and then lots of commotion. (CLICK HERE TO SEE VIDEOS.) She hopped out of her car looking flawless, as you've seen by now—all in sheer black with long hair flatteringly styled. She's been looking good lately in general, but I think this might be the all-around best she's looked in forever. And happy! Even from my vantage point halfway down the carpet, it was clear Madonna was having a ball—she was very chatty and laughing a lot as she did her interviews.
I had fun talking with ABC Radio correspondent Andrea Dresdale, who's interviewed Madonna before and let me know she already had her photo op. I took this as a good omen. We spied on Madonna's progress, noticing when Madonna mouthed to Liz, "I'm cold!" No shit, woman—you're in a see-through dress! She donned a black jacket for the rest of the line.
Madonna closed in on me and, well, you know the rest!
Right after we parted, I wondered aloud if I could get into the event. I was pointed in the right direction, dashed in and barely had time to settle toward the very back when Madonna came in and everyone lost it.
I was next to a new friend (as in, I spilled my guts to him about my pic-with on the spot!) named Robert, holding my camera over my head to capture the fun proceedings.
Madonna looked stunning up there, very regal, and yet was extremely game. The questions we'd all written down when we purchased her Truth or Dare gift set had been vetted by Liz (which I knew because Liz told me mine sucked for a writer, lol), and she did the honors, reading them out for Madonna.
All were either good questions or fun questions (Madonna joked about the "intelligent" questions she was getting after being asked how many shoes she owns), evoking mostly terrific answers (I could have lived without, "Wearing perfume and smelling good has been a big part of my life"). But the obvious unforgettable moment was when Frank Orlik's question was used.
"Will you sign my arm so I can get a tattoo of it?"
Madonna looked surprised but told him to get up there. She promptly signed his arm and even caved in when he greedily asked if he could get a hug. It was a lovefest, the whole night, and the questions used apparently came exclusively from my Facebook page judging from the names!
My favorite question was, "Cut or uncut?" The unshockable Madonna feigned shock then quipped that if we were talking about sandwiches, "I like my sandwiches cut." I'll say!
She answered way more than the promised 10 questions but didn't stay overly long. I think fans really enjoyed it and felt they'd gotten their money's worth; Madonna certainly did!
It ended with a contest and a gathering of all the winners on the stage.
As I was leaving, I wanted to take a picture of the gigantic Truth or Dare fragrance logo near the door but a Macy's PRista shooed me away. Really? It's good publicity, baby!
Outside, I of course had to snap some photos of Frank being interviewed by NBC regarding his tattoo. What nobody but him, me and now you knows is that Frank is bisexual when it comes to divas—he loves Lady Gaga and Madonna. So when Madonna signed his right arm, she didn't know it, but he already had a Lady Gaga tattoo on his left! I love that. He's the human bridge between the communities and the generations.
But there's only one Madonna—and I think we all felt happy to have gotten a refresher spritz of her star power.