Friday, September 25, 2009

Craig Ferguson NYC Book Signing

American on Purpose
Book reading & signing
Barnes & Noble book Store
New York City
September 24, 2009

Arriving at the Barnes & Noble Book Store in Union Square at 4:30ish, my hands were full and I as anxious as I can possibly be. As I walked into the seating area, I was instantly embraced with Craig love. It was really weird, like a Star Wars convention. Here we were all meeting for one common purpose and you could feel it in the room.

I had received a tweet earlier in the day that someone was saving a seat for me. Not someone I know personally but who was offering a kind gesture. The room was was a bit crowded so I started looking for a seat. I don't know what anyone looks like and no one knows what I look like, amongst other things, so that complicated things. I noticed a group of chairs in the first row with no one sitting but a dude fixing some jewelries and a lovely older doll trying to read. I started a game of 20 questions with them and realized that there was a seat indeed waiting for me right in front. I was so shocked by the gesture I thought I was misunderstanding it...for the first few minutes I was jumpy, waiting for the real seat owners to return and give me a piece of their mind.

To my surprise, the very lovely Corp Heidi returned and introduced herself. A very kind die-hard Craig Addict Supreme that I will forever be indebted to for being so considerate. The gesture made me feel quite special and placed me right up front, within feet of His Chattiness. I suspect we'll meet again Corp Heidi...

As the room filled up, a tiny woman approached the microphone on the stage. On her tippy toes, she announced that more people have come than expected. She strongly suggested we all not hold seats for those who weren't in the building. B&N employees started moving around shelves of books and adding rows and rows of seating. Oh my...

From the corner of my eye, I noticed someone that I recognized. There was only one person on the net that I know what they looked lik, so I approached her, looking to make a total fool of myself. Phew...It was indeed my good buddy, Lip Syncing Scot! She wasn't seated too far away and came to join us for some Craig-socialization.

The little group I sat with was quite interesting and most pleasant. All exchanged stories of our favorite show moments and some chatted about the Tweet-A-Thon that occured 2 days before. Ahhh yes, the wonderous Tweet-A-Thon! There was still some pride beaming even 36 hours after Craig was done trending on Twitter.

I found the TAT quite the endearing experience. So many Craig fans joining together to bring the King of Late Night to trending status on Twitter, a form of popularity on that site. The tweets ranged in a variety of verbiage that was loving, but also sharing their favorite popular video clips, pictures, articles and quotes...with a dab of naughtiness in between the cracks. I felt a great pride from the experience in doing a bit of crazy with other Craig Addicts.

There's always one rotten apple in the bunch. At some point, when single seats were filling in, a rickety older gentleman (stay with me) sat down in the second row behind me. He proceeded to flap his gums at me about how he didn't appreciate that I was standing by a group of empty seats. I understood what he was thinking and I immediately explained the people were in the store. I gave him three sentences of assurance in between his ranting accusations of how I thought I was special, or better than anyone else and how I didn't have to follow the rules. Blah, blah, blagh...Creep. I wasn't alone in this battle. Before I knew it there were 4 women yelling at this old flake and I felt the urge to step back. It was starting to get ugly. And he continued on. I solved the situation by giving him a pleasant listening face. He slowly faded like a crap tube radio... It was the mutual feeling of the group seated that this old fart stunk up the place.

A sudden roar of clapping occurred just after 7:00pm. You could feel the giddiness fill the room, like the build up of steam in a warming kettle. He approached the stage and sat as he was introduced.

Craig seemed to be in quite a pleasant mood as his face had a soften look about it. He looked well rested and absolutely delicious. He started to read from a book but it wasn't his. The book was "High on Arrival" by Mackenzie Phillips. After a few sentences, he made his point...that book is full of crazy. Holy Crackers!

Instead, Craig decided to do a small Question and Answer session. A mic was offered and managed to come my way first.
Mal: Are you going to renew your contract?
After an awkward pause
Craig: What contract?
Mal: THE contract for the show
Craig asked if I was with a reporter from the New York Times. I made sure to quickly respond negatively. In Craig fashion, he gave a round about answer and then asked:
Craig: Is that the answer you were looking for?
Mal: It's the answer I expected
Craig then proceeded to answer honestly, stating that they were in negotiations.

Another question asked if there would be Killer Duck puppets on the show, fashioned after his bad childhood acid experience. I believe his answer was "I dunno."

Another question asked if there were going to be any more obscure songs used in the puppet song sketches. That is when he let on that another song with the puppets was being planned. We pressed him to reveal but he denied us in an attempt not to spoil the surprise. He suggested we would see it next week.

Another person had a comment, not a question. They said they were going through some heavy changes in their life but no matter the horrid day they've had full of stress, they are certain to end the day with a chuckle...allowing all the day's badness to drift away. Craig seemed to take this comment to heart. At this time Craig explained that there are days he doesn't feel like or want to do the show but once he gets in front of the camera, that feeling goes away... He promised that he would no longer continue to do the show if he didn't feel good doing it. I whole heartedly agreed with this with a positive verbal response.

At this event, those who know me on the net, that got to meet me, may have realized why I use ellipses so much in my comments...I'm quite Chatty and have a lot on my mind. I found myself somewhat annoying during the Q&A because I was verbally responding to some of Craig's comments. It was so bad, I had to keep trying to stop myself. It's not my fault. I'm used to Craig being on tele and tend to speak to the set when I watch The Late Late Show. It is what it is... I just pray I didn't make too much a fool of myself.

Another person stood up and told Craig that she sleeps with him every night and asked if she could hook her husband up with Megan, Craig's wife.
Craig: Let me get this straight. You get to watch me on television while your husband gets to screw my wife?
And then someone shouted out "yeah, but she'd be saying your name, Craig!"

It was certainly a good crowd indeed. I believe we made Craig feel right at home because he was his usual, uncensored self. No tie=cussing Craig

My mind is a bit like swiss cheese right now so please forgive me if I've missed something. There were a few questions and I honestly can't remember them all. I'm not even sure I heard them all...

After the Q&A session, which Craig admitted he was enjoying, we were lined up in precise order. We were given strict orders of no flash pictures, no conversations & no signing of anything but the book...but as many copies of the book as we liked. Yikes! I was one of the lucky first few on the stage.

Same handsome face, but skinnier since we last met face to face.
Warm, lovely hands as usual, without a smidge of roughness from the bouts of drumming a couple of months ago.
We exchanged a few revealing, kind words and before I knew it, I was leaving the stage.
The rest of the time after, as Craig continued to sign hundreds of books, we hung around the store, chatting each other up with our signing experiences.

It was really such a pleasant time but for Mister Waving Fist Crank-A-Lot, who apparently was denying the Craig love that was flowing throughout the room. It was fun meeting some tweeps, YT users and even some good ol fashioned viewers. Perhaps I'll be lucky enough for our paths to cross again.

Thank you.


  1. aww man, I wish I were home to be there. sounds like it was a really amazing time

  2. Wow Malinky, sounds like it was an awesome experience! Wish I could've been there to meet you!

    Speaking of which, the buddies I met at the Chicago signing made a joke where I said that when and if I ever get to meet you I would say, "Hey, thanks for being on top of Craig." Of course, NOT LITERALLY, but just as a funny inside joke.

    Love your writing style as well. Is there any way that I can submit my report to you if you'd like it?

  3. Hi Malinky!

    Thanks for the recap. I just back tonight from City Arts & Lectures in San Francisco. Craig seemed little tired, probably because he must have flown in this morning from New York. But he was only the more hyper and edgier for it.

    A few highlights: when asked about matters of religion and spirituality, he said that without doubt, you can't have faith. Faith without doubt is OCD.

    He mentioned his first acting experience which he didn't mention in the book: playing Judas in a school play. He said he tried to convince the teacher that the story was really about Judas.

    And he talked about the giant Craig-head puppet. Apparently it was not commissioned by the show or CBS, it was a local guy and a fan who came in one day and gave it to them. And when the mouth didn't work right at first, Craig said he fixed it for free.

    And lastly, he related a complement he got from a fan at a recent book signing (either Chicago or New York) who said "Thanks for being funny. And knowing when not to be funny." Craig seemed touched by it.

    Also, he gave the host a tough (but funny) time.

    FYI this talk will be broadcast on NPR on the City Arts & Lectures program.


  5. Hi Malinky,

    You too have a wonderful way with words - thank you so much for your recap of the NYC signing. Your experience with the Craig fans reminded me of a similar experience I had with Viggo (Mortensen) fans at his 2002 NYC book signing at Housing Works. Alas, this, and the NPR broadcast will probably be the only chance I get to experience the signings, as it doesn't seem as if Craig is coming up to Tranna (or Toronto as you lot say it ;).) for the tour.

    As always, thanks again for your dilligent and loving Craigophelia work. You are appreciated by millions, well, thousands, ok hundreds, well fine at least almost a dozen of us...

  6. Thanks, Mal!
    When did you get to see Craig in person before? At another book signing or show? =)


  7. I was also at the NYC reading, but arrived so late I was in the standing-room-only section. Just wanted to add a question I heard that night that you didn't mention. Someone asked Craig what were in the frames on his desk. He replied that they were photos of his son, and when he didn't feel like doing the show for whatever reason on a particular night, he'd look at them and remember he still needed to make a living for his family. I thought it was a really down-to-earth response, as if he still views himself as a working class guy despite his celebrity.

  8. watch this video Malinky and FYI..i just found out thet you where a woman ...

  9. This made me all warm and fuzzy inside, and I'm so happy that you had this experience, Malinky.

    P.S. I just saw the short clip on YT where he says "Don't aww me". Made my knees go wobbly :)

  10. I'm so happy and I admit slightly jelious of you and everyone who has managed to go to a book signing.
    I just wish Craig would come back to the UK and do a bit of stand up but I don't quite see that happening sadly =[

  11. "Another person stood up and told Craig that she sleeps with him every night and asked if she could hook her husband up with Megan, Craig's wife.
    Craig: Let me get this straight. You get to watch me on television while your husband gets to screw my wife?
    And then someone shouted out "yeah, but she'd be saying your name, Craig!""

    that was me! :)

  12. Hey Malinky! - Thanks for another great week posting all things Craig. Reading your report from NYC was just like being there!

    And checking in from the west coast - here's a clip of Craig talking about puppets from his visit in SF:

  13. Thanks for once again feeding my Craig obsession! I'm glad I'm not the only one who talks back to Craig through the TV set...

  14. His visit to Seattle last night was wonderful, but not nearly so smooth. I didn't feel the questions were especially witty or insightful - and the final one, in particular, consisted of an attention seeking woman trying to hassle him - but I obviously enjoyed myself regardless! I got to meet Craig Ferguson! My books are signed, I got to say hello and listen to him answer a few questions and wander through a mini-monologue of sorts. It was the highlight of my week - maybe month - but I do wish Seattle could've been a bit of a better audience for him.

    Also, he really does have such nice hands, doesn't he?

    -Lauren (lbd1459 on youtube)

  15. Hi,

    Just came over from Youtube. I wanted to say thanks for putting up the videos that you do. I don't have YT account (maybe in the future) so I couldn't thank you over there. Anyway, just wanted you to know that I appreciate what you do. It is awesome that you take the time to upload each day. I also enjoyed hearing about your Q&A with Craig. Got to love him, he seems so sweet!

    Ouida Gabriel

  16. Hi all,
    Ditto to all coments,particulary re: Seattle, which I attended (at least we know his novel sequel is coming ;) Glad to see another Viggo fan here :) (Naomi, we have great taste in men!)

    But I'm writing to say that his answer to my request for an AUDIO version of BtBatR, was 'I'm willing'. Chronicle Books said the author has audio rights, and his lit agent needed to be contacted - they are BJ Robbins - a Google search will pull up email addresses for them. I've sent mine, with no answer - yet!!

    Wouldn't that be a great Xmas present - another half dozen or so hours of Craig telling us a story ! :)

  17. I am actually jealous that you were all there and I wasn't. I really did miss out on something amazing. Craig always keeps us together though :)

  18. I don't have a TV, so w/out you, I would be Craig-less. In fact, I appreciate your efforts so hugely that I have listed your YT link on my blog. Hope you get lots of visitors via my page!


  19. Gosh I am late finding this - but now I can follow you on Twitter and know when and where I can see Craig!