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Just An Online Minute... Drag Queens, Slap Bracelets, And Inflatable Squirrels. Must Be A Mr. Youth Party...

Mr. Youth Holiday Mashup, Tammany Hall, New York
December 9, 2010

What happened last week?  Oh right, a whole slew of holiday parties.  Good thing this week is slower, right?  Ah ha! Ah hahahahahahaha!  That maniacal laughter is dipped in sarcasm, swirled with insanity, and sprinkled with couch separation anxiety.   This week isn't slowing down, and if you slow down, it is going to mow you down with a sleigh driven by an overweight elf careening toward a triple bypass.  You know, if you believe in that sort of thing.

But seriously, folks.  Last week ended with the Mr. Youth Holiday Mashup.  I could see the wall I was about to hit getting closer and closer, but I pushed it back as I approached Tammany Hall, a place with no online presence, and an even stranger IRL presense. This was not, I repeat not, intensified by the 7-foot-tall drag queen sucking some nicotine from her cancer stick by the entrance.  Tammany Hall used to be The Annex, which I know nothing about.

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The pitch-black hallway reminded me of The Haunted Granary in Mantua.  I expected a masked drunk high school dropout to yank my hair and thrust a rubber chainsaw in my face.   Instead, the coat check guy popped out, yanking my coat and thrusting a cardboard square in  my face.  Around the corner I found Diana Levine, the super-talented and not-high-off-her-own-exploding-fame (well deserved, she's amazing) photographer.  If you ever hit this industry's party scene and the photobooth has the brunette, bespectacled Levine tucked in the corner with her trusty camera, you know you're in good hands -- and that the party was planned by someone who wants to impress.

Tammany Hall has a meat counter.  Not a guy who counts the meat, no no, a glass display case with plates of meat or... something... in it.  I could not identify the food, but I assumed it was meat.  If it wasn't meat, everyone was in trouble.  The downstairs dance area was packed with thirsty partygoers bopping around to Eclectic Method, digi media "It" dudes (but there was only one dude there this time, that I saw).  I found another drag queen as well as a gold lamé cowboy.  Thanks to Wikipedia, I now know that lamé is also used in fencing, so it's not just your granny's retirement community fabric!

I found AgencySpy's Kiran Aditham keeping a bench cozy with Kristen Bryan and Nora  Lyons of DiGennaro Communications.   "Where the heck is Kenny!" I said, inquiring of the whereabouts of Mr. Youth poster boy Kenny Heinau.  "Everyone's at the Barbarian Group party," said Kirin, sounding very confident about this bit of intelligence.  "There is no way Kenny would miss his own party," I said, much more confident in my knowledge of Kenny. 

I eventually did find Kenny, but first I spilled an off-tasting Bud Light down the back of Mr Youth's Alexis Dorenter's lovely party dress.  I then ran into Doug Akin, Managing Partner, and Chief Engagement Officer at Mr.Youth.  His jacket was Michael Jackson Thriller, his wrist wear was of the slap bracelet variety (I'm probably dating myself here, but remember when those were outlawed at school for slicing wrists?).  He warbled excitedly to me about Four Loko or something, which I sort of blocked out because I'm not a 19-year-old boy.

According to Manisha Marberry, Associate Account Executive and Social Media Manager at Mr Youth, I had missed the electronic violinist.  And I was about to miss more, but I have a feeling the Mr Youth party troupe is thankful the party writer left -- what with the dropped pint glasses and the amount of shots I saw slinging back. 

Of course Catchafire's MaryBeth Bognar and I had to stop at Diana Levine's photo booth, where I lifted an inflatable squirrel prop over my head and nearly destroyed her lighting set up.  Happy Holidays!

Photos from this party are up on Flickr.  More coming.

Tonight I am covering The Atlantic's Holiday Party as well as the AICP Holiday Party (at Angel Orensantz Foundation, a sure sign of a unique experience).  Wednesday I am covering Digital DUMBO #22, which I'm fairly certain is busting at the seams.There is no way DUMBO Loft can hold that many digital media, social media, startup newbies, bearded techies, new biz schmoozers, blogging beer swillers, and PR  pimpers, but it looks like they're definitely going to try.  Wrapping up the week on Thursday, Conversation is throwing a Naughty or Nice party, which terrifies me for reasons only my therapist can explain.

Ding dong!

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