So, last night’s Vending Machine Challenge… here’s the deal: two teams of three people race to eat every item in a vending machine (they must buy each item). The first challenge was the Onion vs. AM New York, the second – MoMA vs. Pocket Change. The event was organized by the ultra exclusive LVHRD, and sponsored by Dewars and Brooklyn Lager. Details of the location were unavailable until the day of the challenge when they delivered by text-message, with instructions to bring a big of unpopped popcorn in order to gain admittance. Sounds bombtastic, no? NO!
To be fair, I left before the main event, so bored and annoyed was I. It could have taken a turn for the awesome, but I doubt it. Also, I should mention how incredibly sweet the organizers were. There was a mix-up with my tickets (which happened to be totally my fault), but the long and short of it was that they let me in with very little proof that I’d actually paid. It’s a rare occurrence for people to be so kind. Finally, the booze was free (or came with the cost a $22 ticket, but I drank my money’s worth). Okay so, all in all, it wasn’t bad. But it wasn’t awesome, and it should have been.
The problem with the VMC was one of hubris. The event wanted to be amazing, but it was brought down by the waxwings of a small venue with an inadequate sound system, underwhelming participants and the stench of burned popcorn. I shouldn’t be surprised that the Onion’s intern staff is comprised of petulant, smug kids whose apathy glares stretched the lines of believability. Still, I was disappointed. The AM New York team delivered (indeed, one even vomited though I couldn’t see over the sea of Nikon DSLRs), but it just wasn’t enough. Listening to Z-List blogosphere celebrity/drag king Murray Hill – the events’ host – boast about a future post on Gawker wasn’t just unamusing, it was pathetic. The first challenge seemed to mimic the well-known ‘Tortoise v. Hare’ challenge, but without the unexpected climax of that age-old race. AMNY were there to compete, but the Onion kids seemed to be casually snacking and getting wasted on Dewars. Of course, given that the stage was three inches off the ground and I was in the back, I could have been missing all kind of action below everyone’s neckline.
Unsurprisingly (the theme for the evening), the AMNY team won, and I left before I got in the way of another hipster photographer eager to get a shot in the L.